• Kim’s Dream
  • Orlando R. Ravanera

In a recent 3-month International Study conducted by the United States  Agency for International Development (USAID) headed by Dr. Judith Hermanson,  it is the conclusion that where there are cooperatives, the quality of life in the communities where they are operating is better and that the cooperative members are enjoying a better economic life than the non-members.  What is even more amazing is that, according to that international research study, “the Philippines is the Cooperative Leader in Asia and the Pacific.”  Wow, so wonderful! Why is this so?

The biggest asset of the cooperatives is its philosophy: the time honored and universally accepted cooperative principles and values.  Unlike global corporations, oligarchs and cartels, they may not have might of Power, neither lots of money nor influential people. Yet, cooperatives have survived all these years and in fact are growing and blooming without let-up.  Many are wondering how is this possible.  How such an organization run where there is no boss dictating, where nobody passes orders, where all enjoy equal rights? In fact, there is nothing to wonder about. Cooperatives are putting in motion the essence of democratic control.  Glaringly as described, “the key to success of the cooperatives lies in the treasure of their basic thoughts and DNA.”

Indeed, the very essence of cooperativism lies in its DNA, to wit: members-owned, value-based and philosophy driven and sustainability.

Common ownership or members-owned – all members are the owners. As declared in the Articles of Cooperation, “All the profit and loss, whatever it may be, is shared or owned by the members.” As their pledge states, “I shall adopt the broader meaning of common ownership… instead of thinking in terms of I should get more than others, I shall aspire that other should not get loss than me.”

Value-based and philosophy driven that gives high adherence to paradigm shift towards high spirituality.  This shift has become imperative in a world that is giving so much veneration to the profit motive that has already captured the mindset of all governments, all institutions, all religious groups and all universities. Humanity has been so enamored in so much externalities and trivialities.  How do we countervail against the dominant economic paradigm that has sacrificed Mother Earth and the people to the altar of greed and profit?  How do we rescue humanity now buried in so much consumerism and materialism?  Only through a Philosophy called Cooperativism!

Of the three DNAs, what appears to be the urgent call of the times is Sustainability. We are now in the 20th year of the 21st  but we don’t know anymore if we can reach the 22nd century which is only 80 years from now. The biblical John’s Revelation of the Coming of the Four Horsemen of Apocalypse is now unfolding with the onset of the Corona Virus. Worse is the Climate Change Crisis.  An environmentalist from Canada has even a more horrible prediction.  “At the rate we are destroying the ozone layer and the world’s resource base and subjecting to extinction some 100 species of flora and fauna every day, what seems unimaginable may become possible, which is, the end of life on Earth.”

In his essay, “Moral Collapse in a Warming World,” ethicist Clive Hamilton said, “It now seems likely that the world will warm by 4 degrees Celsius or more, which will transform the conditions of life on the planet and result in catastrophes.” But while such horrible scenario is now in the offing, climate change deniers lead by no less than US President Trump never stop in misleading the whole world so as to continue the use of fossils fuels that is giving US global corporations great profit at the tune of 9 trillion dollars annually or 10 million dollars every minute. As concluded by Mr. Hamilton, “Indeed, there are three kinds of actors in this process of subversion: those who tell the lies, those who repeat the lies, and those who allow themselves to be seduced by the lies.” Let notice be served to one and all that we are facing a crisis on climate change and hiding this truism is an unprecedented crime against humanity

Indeed, we are dealing with the phenomenon that even though climate is a severe threat now and to the future civilization, the circle of lies and subversion causes inaction at all levels. We have to rectify that subversion which if not rectified, will cause the earth’s 6th extinction. Despite this glaring reality, humanity is deep in slumber because of the morale collapse that includes religious apathy.   The Unseen Being, the Creator (God) will not allow the demise of some 7.3 billion people on earth, thus, – the Corona Virus, to awaken the apathetic Homo Sapiens, the most flawed of all of God’s creation.

As a countervailing force, the robust cooperative movement with some one billion members worldwide or more than eleven million nation-wide must now stand for Mother Earth because sustainability is its foremost essence.

Cooperatives rejoice! You are the answer to prevent the forthcoming catastrophe facing humanity. Through cooperativism, the divine purpose of the universe is now unfolding – that’s how important you are!