No, I’m not talking Evangelical Christian style. For me its about social and economic justice. I really like what Paulo Coelho says about what the “Good Fight” means to him:

“The Good Fight is the one we Fight because our heart asks it of us.The Good Fight is the one that’s fought in the name of our dreams. When we are young our dreams first explode inside us with all of their force, we are very courageous, but we haven’t yet learned how to Fight. With great effort, we learn how to Fight, but by then we no longer have the courage to go into combat. So we turn against ourselves and do battle within. We become our own worst enemy. We say that our dreams were childish, or too difficult to realize, or the result or our not having known enough about life. We kill our dreams because we are afraid to Fight the Good Fight.”

Now I’m not endorsing his spiritual viewpoint, in all honesty I haven’t read much of his works. I’ve seen many of hi quotes of his floating around the internet, and sometimes they really resonate with me. This one in particular. I’ve long dreamed of an ideal world, with human needs met, resources shared, knowledge freely available, and spirit of cooperation and love between people. I see glimpses of it all around me every day. I fully believe it’s within our capacity to realise this dream, at least for the vast majority of the time. We’re all learning, growing, developing all the time. That means we make mistakes, and things get messy. But there is no earthly reason the decent, human side of us can’t be manifest in our societies and our organisations. We’d all be better for it.

Well, it turns out there’s quite a few around who feel the same. I want this page to be a place to share the Good Fights others are fighting, in whatever way, because we need to connect with other “warriors” and dreamers so we don’t turn against ourselves and do battle within. I’ve been there. When at 16 it dawned on me that our society and economy were damaging all of us, and the march toward a Brave New World of Big Brother and desolate souls seemed so overwhelming and overpowering, I was utterly depressed. It happened to me again at 29 when I saw even Buddhism can be twisted and perverted into oppression, control and hoarding of wealth (thanks NKT, your silly little cult taught me a very valuable lesson).

So some of these will be people raising our awareness of the reality of the economic war waged against us. Some of it will be the efforts of people fighting back. Some of it will be the dreams driving the warriors.

If you have anything you think might help others along the road, drop me a line. If I like it, I’ll include it.

Dreaming the Dream:

There’s a lot of alternatives to the current strategy of cuts and austerity, and to our economic model in general. Here’s some I like:

These two are explanations of a Buddhist view of Economics: http://www.colorado.edu/economics/morey/4999Ethics/Religion/SchumacherEF_BuddistEconomics.pdf and http://www.urbandharma.org/pdf/Buddhist_Economics.pdf

This is the New Economics Foundation: http://www.neweconomics.org/

This is Positive Money: http://www.positivemoney.org/

This is a fantastic documentary about the Government that brought the NHS and Welfare system into being in 1945, and the experiences of people alive at the time: http://www.thespiritof45.com/

Raising Awareness:

This blog – Ripped Off Britons contains a wealth of detailed analysis, comment, insight and interviews about the situation in the UK: http://www.blog.rippedoffbritons.com/

This blog – Max Keiser Financial War Reports gives a more global, possibly US-centric view of the economic war. He has some excellent sources, interviews and analysis. And a youtube channel: http://maxkeiser.com/

Richard Murphy is an expert in Tax, Tax Policy and Tax Avoidance. His blog is fantastic http://www.taxresearch.org.uk/Blog/

The Tax Justice Network have a wealth of research and resources on Tax Avoidance. Read it!

For a view on how the war is affecting some specific groups, try DPAC at http://dpac.uk.net/ for the experiences of disabled people, This one: http://artsagainstcuts.wordpress.com/about/ is from the view of artists, and this one is about the “Workfare” schemes which mandate unemployed people to work full time, for no wage, often in retail for private companies under the threat of losing their benefits: http://www.boycottworkfare.org/

This blog: http://scriptonitedaily.wordpress.com/ is superbly written and full of info and insight.

Fighting the Fight:

There’s an awful lot going on. DPAC and Boycott Workfare organise protests, demonstrations and events quite often.

UK Uncut are very creative in the awareness-raising demonstrations they engage in: http://www.ukuncut.org.uk/

There’s a campaign to Keep Our NHS Public: http://www.keepournhspublic.com/index.php

I’ve come across this camapign for a basic citizens income across Europe. It has a lot of info: http://makewealthhistory.org/

There’s a campaign to force the government to abandon its welfare refoms and begin a New Deal for sick and disabled people: http://wowpetition.com/ and also http://ourwelfareworks.com/take-action/

Here’s an excellent campaign to get people to use cooperatives and credit unions instead of big, failed, criminal banks: http://www.moveyourmoney.org.uk/

There’s a campaign to force the government to abandon its changes to housing benefit, AKA the Bedroom Tax. Check #axethetax and #bedroomtax on Twitter

I hope some of these help you build the knowledge, courage and strength to Fight the Good Fight for our economy, society and ultimately our own happiness and health.