Rules Change: Resetting the Playing Field for Corporations, Communities and Democracy
Action ideas for capitalism and the common good
May 3-5, 2013 / Univ. of Massachusetts-Amherst
YOU'RE INVITED . . TO A CIVIL ACT
You -- corporate leader, public official, author, policy analyst, researcher, scholar,student or concerned citizen -- are invited to join a bold and urgent effort to rethink our politics, economy and communities. For the first time ever, civic and business leaders are convening to open the silos that threaten to strangle our great, 250-year American Dream. For three days, May 3-5, at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst we intend to test the proposition that a collaborative congress can invent new rules, new measurements and new inspiration for economic justice.
We're calling this timely gathering: "Rules Change: Resetting the Playing Field for Corporations, People and Democracy." We'll get started Friday with a critical address by Pulitzer Prize-winning author/journalist Hedrick Smith answer the question: "Who Stole The American Dream?" and suggest what to do about it. Then well spend Saturday formulating ideas around five key change categories, and find common ground and possible action steps in a Sunday morning wrapup.
The Rules Change Project is not a new group, but a collaboration among many. Our goal: Mainstream rule changes that redefine the relationship between corporations and society. We will focus on three approaches: (1) Top-down policy solutions, (2) bottom-up new models for business development and governance, and (3) internal changes coming from within corporations themselves. We’re committed to cross silos and politics -- to bring policy wonks, engaged citizen-activists and corporate change-agents into dialogue with each other. Collaborations formed at Rules Change will help launch on-going work that moves beyond rhetorical boundaries.
President Obama declared in his State of the Union address: "The patriots of 1776 did not fight to replace the tyranny of a king with the privileges of a few or the rule of a mob. They gave to us a Republic, a government of, and by, and for the people, entrusting each generation to keep safe our founding creed." At Rules Change, we intend to ensure that all people -- real people -- are treated justly, and can pursue lives marked by freedom, health and happiness.
If you believe, as we do, that the American republic is not fully meeting this responsibility, what might be done? There is no single path so we are asking each delegate to help us with one of at least five approaches. We've identified five key categories of "rules change" -- and an equal number of supporting categories -- to start. Dozens of authors, scholars and policy experts have written for years about these categories, and their prescriptions are remarkably similar. And yet little changes? Why?
We think the first step is the hardest -- recognition that there are many ideas for politic, policy, marketplace and community change which are not at all radical and simply require attention and action from thought leaders.
WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT
If you join us in congress May 3-5 in Amherst, you will be among some of the most insightful and committed citizens of our time. We will be gathered not to hear speeches, and not to debate as much as to focus and hone a common set of propositions for action -- for real change at the individual, community, state and even federal and world levels.
You can expect to pay a little bit to join us, because Rules Change is not being funded by any special-interest group, or even primarily by any foundations or large grants. It is a civil act. Your registration will cover facilities, food -- and a portion of registration for some students and persons of limited means who otherwise could not be part of the discussion.
We've made food and lodging arrangements, too.
WHAT YOU'LL GET
What you'll receive is:
WHAT TO DO NOW
To accept this invitation, all you need to do is REGISTER now for Rules Change. You will be contacted by the person who issued the invitation to find out how you can offer to start helping today ot make "Rules Change" not just a transformational event, but the start of a transformational movement.
The Rules Change Project convening team (in formation), including: Tom Barefoot, Bill Baue, John Bonifaz, Jeff Clement, Chuck Collins, Bill Densmore, Michael Hannahan, Scott Klinger, U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern, Mike Lapham, Rachel Plattus and Josh Silver, with help from the New Economy Coalition, the Institute for Policy Studies, the UMass Donahue Institute, Free Speech for People, UnitedRepublic.org, Responsible Wealth / UFE, Gross National Happpiness USA and the Marlboro MBA in Managing for Sustainability.