Vermont votes for public banking

Eric Garland Finance Trends, Government Trends Leave a Comment

Here’s another signpost of community banking competing directly with megabanks as a way to put investment ahead of speculation. Unsurprisingly, it is from that indomitable place founded by my ancestors, The Republic of Vermont. At Town Meeting Day, Vermont’s unique brand of direct democracy, several towns voted to create a state banking infrastructure dedicated to building the next generation of …

Rebuilding blighted communities through art

Eric Garland Culture Trends, Government Trends Leave a Comment

I heard about Theastre Gates in the context of his work in North St. Louis, where he intends to use art installations to revitalize the community. This work has already made him famous in Chicago. But now the real authority on America – Stephen Colbert – has knighted the man and declared him savior of this nation.   The Colbert …

When government goes over our heads

Eric Garland Government Trends Leave a Comment

I come from a small, bitterly cold New England state called “Vermont,”the eighth generation of my family to do so. The largest city is Burlington, with a whopping 39,000 inhabitants. After that comes Rutland at 17,000. Not exactly Tokyo and Mexico D.F. in terms of scale. Vermont is a fiercely independent place, home of the first republic on North American …