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To jumpstart US job market, turn workers into owners–this is an idea I really like, but I doubt many business owners will turn this direction.

Seldom do the United Steelworkers, the United Nations, and film director Michael Moore express the same idea at the same time. But all have, in their own way, promoted the benefits of cooperative businesses in recent months.

Cooperatives–worker-owned businesses–are not at all a new idea, but I am glad to see it is gaining favor again. It is something I wanted to do with my restaurant some 26 years ago. The article cited here focuses on how cooperatives might help the US economy back to growth and high employment, but the real value of cooperatives is the proper placement of incentives.

Profit is typically the incentive of investors, but if it were also the incentive of workers imagine the potential for a really productive enterprise, with people going about their work because they really care about it.

Time to finally behead the paternalistic monster. That kind of management is not suited for a cooperative (it does not work anyway) and people are perfectly capable of motivating themselves if it is for the right reasons.

Utopian literature often introduces cooperatives as a model for their communities. Some people say it will never work, but I think it depends on the level of cooperation and realistic expectations.

(Don’t forget to visit alphainventions.com)

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4 Comments

  1. Cooperation is the fial goal for all the communist:it pictured us a unbelieveble scene:where people all living together,eatting in one same bowl and share all the resources,which sounds sort of Utopian.And China once carried out such a wonderful plan,and it turned out Utpopian is not as beafutiful as we thought,even ugly.So I say there will be never perfect cooperation on the earth.However, we can always found examples of double-win situation when both paticipants benefit from cooperation.Cooperation can be a good thing when it occurs in team work needed jods such a football.It’s a product with ennurmous positive externalities and should be encourged.
    The bad twin-brother of cooperation is collusion, who cann be found among oligopoly firms…the best examples would be Baidu,Tencent,Shengda those 3 network companies,they are takin over the whole chinese internet.

  2. The worker-owned businesses can easily achieve the high-effieciency, which means that people who shares the same idea and aims work together can apparently increase the efficiency of works, thus promoted the economy. Many company struggled for looking for incentives for their workers to make their best. If the workers can together own coops, the ‘workers’ and the investors will both benefit from this.

  3. Adam Smith claimed that self interest would lead to the whole better of of the society.While, John nash stated that the point of Adam Smith can be perfected by additionally saying that : it is better that all the people do the right things toward the public benefit .

    i actually hardly see what US government is planning is gonna have a good result. Though whether the people will work or not will depend on the level of cooperation and realistic expectations, people are mostly too lazy to do so.

    So, currently , workers dont have such active incentives ,, and let workers to be the owners hardly work…

  4. Cooperation have more benefit for the us,when we share all the resources with each other,we can get maximum benefit for the world,such as a team’s power is bigger than a person.But everyone is selfish,all of people want to oligopoly the market,so there will be never perfect cooperation on the earth.


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