The essence of “co-operative socialism”

A society where cooperativism is dominant rather than corporate capitalism is a society that spreads its wealth.

The Wandering Hedgehog

Greg Rosen’s book Serving the People quotes two statements in particular that seem excellent summaries of what “co-operative socialism” is about, in contrast to the centralised state-socialism that characterised much of Labour’s actions.

The first was written by Harold Campbell in 1947 (p.27):

The Co-operative Party advocates the sovereignty of the consumer. It declares that the state should be controlled in the interests of the consumer as a co-operative society is controlled in his interests.

It bases its advocacy upon the socialist ground that consumer control is the only truly classless control. The consumer interest is all embracing: any other is a limited interest. … The specific role of the co-operative movement in politics is the advocation of libertarian socialism, based upon the classlessness of consumer sovereignty.

In the drive to make as much headway in five years towards a new and planned Britain by the Labour government, much…

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