Along with direct action and other forms of resistance, a successful movement must also build new institutions based on solidarity, justice and cooperation. From small, worker-owned cooperatives to national advocacy groups, hundreds of thousands of people around the country are working to create democratic and sustainable systems that meet the basic needs of all people. Below are some organizations, tools and other resources to help you get involved creating a new world.

Featured Video:The video to the right is the trailer for the new film, Fixing the Future, highlighting effective, local practices such as community banking, worker cooperatives, local currencies and more.

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Recent Articles in Create!

New Ferguson Judge Finally Doing Something About Abusive Court

Ferguson Mike Brown mural

By Ryan J. Reilly in The Huffington Post – Ferguson Municipal Court Judge Donald McCullin issued an order on Monday that attempts to address some of the damage caused by St. Louis County’s practice of issuing arrest warrants and harsh penalties for minor violations, a revenue-driven approach the Department of Justice criticized in a March report. The judge’s order withdrew all arrest warrants issued before this year, and reinstated drivers licenses that were suspended only because of a missed court date or failure to pay a fine. The move comes a year after after the death of Michael Brown helped call attention to theabusive practices of municipal courts around St. Louis County that undermined relationships between police and communities in the region.

Community Moves From Resistance To Focus On Solutions

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By Grassroots Big Splash – We started to not just focus on the environmental damages that fracking does and start trying to present solutions. In 2013 the events continued to support and provide a platform against fracking and dangerous LPG storage in nearby Seneca Lake. We wanted to offer solutions and education about how to remedy these problems as well. In the Summer of 2013 the Big Splash Sustainability Fair was born. A platform for renewable and sustainable business that was accessible to everyone. The events we transformed into two day, family oriented, solutions based activism. There were solar and wind exhibits, up-cycled jewelry and clothing, local and farm fresh food and produce. The two day events allowed people a little more of a get away and was a lot like sustainability summer camp. This is where we are today as well. We are growing and learning all of the time. Basically, we will continue to support local economy, the communities we visit and live in, and the environment.

Why German Universities Will Offer Free Education To Refugees

Hundreds of migrants wait outside of the reception center for refugees and asylum- seekers in Berlin, Friday, August 21, 2015

By Beatrice Gitau in CS Monitor – About 60 German universities in Germany are providing free university education to the growing population of refugees who are seeking asylum in the country, German newspaper Handelsblatt reports. Some universities are offering language tuition, have waived semester fees, provide free student passes for public transport, and give access to hardship and grant funds, according to survey done last month by the German Rectors’ Conference, a voluntary association of state universities. “Migration is a task for all of society, and universities must do their part,” University of Hildesheim president Wolfgang-Uwe Friedrich explained to Handelsblatt on why he set up the program. The Washington Post notes that, “German universities have been tuition-free since the beginning of October. The country offers more than 900 English-language degrees even Americans could pursue for free, with courses ranging from engineering to social sciences.”

California Financial: Let’s Take The Initiative & Create A Public Bank

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By Stephen J. Butler in Occupy – I personally think the time has come to set wheels in motion to organize a state-owned bank here in California. North Dakota has operated its own bank since the early 1900s and it has made money for taxpayers while strengthening the state’s own regional banks. The net effect has been to keep bank profits in North Dakota. The only losers have been the “too-big-to-fail” banks that would otherwise have enjoyed making the spread on money borrowed by, and throughout, the state. Of course, there is little political will to organize anything this effective in California because the banking lobby deploys too much money throughout the political process. However, our state’s initiative process offers voters an option to do an end-run around elected officials.

Should Food Irrigated With Fracked Water Be Labeled?

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By Lydia O’Connor – A new bill proposed in California would require all produce irrigated with fracking wastewater to come with warning labels. The bill, which Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D) introduced on Monday, would require any crops grown with water that had previously been injected into rock formations to free oil and gas reserves and sold to consumers in the state to be labeled. The warning would read, “Produced using recycled or treated oil-field wastewater.” “Consumers have a basic right to make informed decisions when it comes to the type of food that ends up on the family dinner table,” Gatto said in a press release from his office. “Labeling food that has been irrigated with potentially harmful or carcinogenic chemicals, such as those in recycled fracking water, is the right thing to do.”

Town In Michigan Pooled Money To Send HS Graduates To College

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By Walter Einenkel in DailyKos – The Atlantic has an article about the town of Baldwin, Michigan, and their decision to help the young people in their community afford college. According to the article, 10 years ago less than half of the small graduating class even enrolled in college, and the number of kids from that class actually graduating from college was two. Today, nearly every student that graduated high school is heading off to college this fall. What changed was the introduction of the Baldwin Promise, a fund which in 2009 offered to pay up to $5,000 a year for any student from the Baldwin public schools to attend a public or private college in Michigan. Now $5,000 might sound like a pittance when compared to the $31,000 private college now costs annually.

California Businesses Save Water In Style With #DroughtNotDrab

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By Sara Aminzadeh in EcoWatch – As the drought continues, Californians are stepping up to conserve water, and collectively exceeded Gov. Brown’s 25 percent reduction mandate in June 2015. Nonetheless, water-intensive lawns and other hallmarks of an English garden-style landscape still remain a huge draw on our state’s dwindling water supply. Outdoor watering accounts for about half of residential water use in urban areas, and up to 80 percent in hot, dry inland areas. Reducing outdoor water use is a key focus of state conservation enforcement efforts, particularly in areas of the state that failed to meet the emergency water conservation mandate. Research from the Pacific Institute suggests that Californians could reduce outdoor water use by 70 percent by landscaping with low water-use plants, saving water and money.

It’s Now Free & Legal To Plant Vegetable Garden On City Land In LA

Credit: HollywoodParkLife

By Amanda Froelich in Nation of Change – As ridiculous as it sounds, growing food on government land is an illegal practice in many cities and towns across the U.S. But not everyone desires – or has the means – to pay an extraordinary amount on fruits and vegetables just to maintain their health. For this reason, a growing percentage of the populace has begun planting foods near their home and on lesser-visited plots of land in the city. Known as Guerrilla gardening, this practice has been deemed illegal, as the food foragers do not have a permit to grow a garden – even if they are only trying to use the Earth to its fullest capacity. Such was the case for Ron Finley, who, four years ago, was given an arrest warrant for planting carrots outside of his home on a small strip of city-owned land.

Islamic Declaration On Global Climate Change

Climate change ice melt

By Various in The Shalom Center – Islamic leaders from 20 countries today launched a bold Climate Change Declaration to engage the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims on the issue of our time. The Declaration presents the moral case, based on Islamic teachings, for Muslims and people of all faiths worldwide to take urgent climate action. It was drafted by a large, diverse team of international Islamic scholars from around the world following a lengthy consultation period prior to the Symposium. It has already been endorsed by more than 60 participants and organisations including the Grand Muftis of Uganda and Lebanon. The Declaration is in harmony with the Papal Encyclical and has won the support of the Pontifical Council on Justice and Peace of the Holy See.

Sowing Seeds Of Autonomy

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By Samantha Demby – On Sunday, July 26, 2015, The Caravan for the “Buen Vivir” of Peoples in Resistance arrived to the community of Paso de la Reina on the southwestern coast of Oaxaca, Mexico. The intense sun had already begun to fade, but the hot air lingered in a thick and gray repose, hopeful for a twilight breeze. Windows wide open, the caravan’s mobile laboratory clunked down a rocky road, past lime trees and lush cattle pastures, until reaching a modest, yellow bridge. It was at this site on the dawn of July 11, 2009 that residents of Paso de la Reina prevented the entrance of workers from Mexico’s Federal Electricity Commission (CFE, Comisión Federal de Electricidad), initiating a years-long encampment in resistance to the damming of the Río Verde.

Obama Must Confront Monopoly Practices In Health Insurance

(Image: Health care costs via Shutterstock)

By Lawrence J. Hanley in The Huffington Post – The flurry of recent merger announcements from the handful of remaining national health insurance providers is cause for alarm for all Americans. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has taken nearly full effect and it is clear that staggering annual increases in health insurance premium costs are still with us. The skyrocketing costs of health insurance and health care treatment are pushing working American families well past the breaking point. There is a limit to what working people can afford to pay for what should be a human right. The most recent corporate advances down the road of health insurance monopolization are the announcements that the enormous Aetna intends to absorb rival Humana, and at the same time the Anthem corporate giant — formerly Wellpoint — is maneuvering to swallow Cigna.

Can Gov't Budgets Become Democratic? Participatory Budgeting

Participatory budgeting in Brazil

By Laura Flanders for Grit TV – Can budgets and even the federal reserve be brought under public control? One radical tool for grassroots democracy that is taking hold is Participatory Budgeting. Josh Lerner is co-founder and executive director of the Participatory Budgeting Project and is the author of two books, both released last year: Making Democracy Fun: How Game Design Can Empower Citizens and Transform Politics, and Everyone Counts: Could Participatory Budgeting Change Democracy? Also on the show: what is the Federal Reserve, and what role could it have? Connie Razza works with the Center for Popular Democracy and their “Fed Up” campaign, working to make the federal reserve work for the 99%.

Imagining A Progressive South

Am frühen Samstagmorgen kletterte Bree Newsome, 30, auf den Fahnenmast vor dem Parlament in Columbia, South Carolina – und nahm die umstrittene Konföderiertenflagge einfach ab Foto: REUTERS

By Chisolm Allenlundy in Talk Poverty – “The South is not, today, one whole.” Those words, uttered by the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. in a March 30, 1963 essay for The Nation, are as true today as they were then. In that statement, Dr. King invoked the dedicated minority of progressive Southerners who were determined to bring racial justice to the region, while simultaneously putting pressure on the equally-dedicated majority hell-bent on maintaining the status quo. Indeed, if anything is true of the curious collection of states commonly referred to as the “American South,” it is that things never seem to change. Or, at least, that was the story told in a recent Politico Magazine article by Michael Lind that claimed the South is simply deadweight on the rest of the nation. Lind harps on some themes that we Southerners, and particularly progressive Southerners, are all too familiar with: our soaring economic inequality, our propensity for violence, our pitiful progress in advancing racial justice. In making all of these statements, Lind is by no means incorrect, yet the focus is wrong.

The U.S. Wind Energy Boom Couldn’t Be Coming At A Better Time

Wind energy is booming as oil and gas prices drop. (Ron Antonelli/Bloomberg)

By Chris Mooney in The Washington Post – The Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan, released last week, requires the country to use a lot more renewable energy by the year 2030 — and a lot less coal. And right on time, two new reports published Monday by the Department of Energy find that one key renewable sector — wind — is booming, a development that can only help matters when it comes to reducing carbon emissions. The reports being released — including the 2014 Wind Technologies Market Report, published by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory — suggest that wind is being installed at a rapid rate, that its costs are plummeting, that its technologies are advancing, and that it is creating a growing number of jobs to boot. Wind energy in the U.S. is now at 66 gigawatts of installed capacity, according to the report — providing roughly 5 percent of total U.S. electricity demand. 66 gigawatts is enough electricity to power 17.5 million homes (a gigawatt is a billion watts).

The Kurds Liberating Themselves Through Grassroots Democracy

Kurdish protest

By Joris Leverink for ROAR Magazine – The developments in Kurdistan — and especially in Rojava, the Kurdish region in northern Syria — have tickled the radical imagination of activists around the globe. The revolution in Rojava has been compared to Barcelona in 1936 and the Zapatistas in Chiapas, Mexico. The radical left needs its own mythology as much as everybody else, and in this sense Rojava, Barcelona and Chiapas serve as hopeful reminders that there is an alternative; that it is possible to organize society in a different way. Bookchin believes that if our ideal is a Commune of Communes, the natural place to start is at the local political level, with a movement and program as the “uncompromising advocate of popular neighborhood and town assemblies and the development of a municipalized economy.” Ultimately, the best way to support the struggles of the Kurds, the Zapatistas and many other revolutionary movements and initiatives that have sprung up across the globe in the past few years, is by listening to their stories, learning from their experiences and following in their footsteps.