Thankfully, Congress has walked the U.S. back from the edge of the fiscal cliff with a last-minute bandaid of a bill. Along with $600 billion in new tax revenues, the deal also includes a temporary fix to the farm bill, an end to the payroll tax break, and tax credits for businesses. Both sides of the aisle will take it as a cue to moan and groan about the other. Along the way, they will all throw their vocal support behind Main Street, while putting their real muscle behind Wall Street. So what's a concerned citizen to do?
Stacy Mitchell, a senior researcher at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, might have the answer.
Recently, Mitchell gave a TEDx talk in which she highlighted the local economy movement as possibly the best way for citizens to gain control of their economic destiny:
"As remarkable as these trends are, they are unlikely to amount to more than an small sideshow on the margins of the mainstream if the only way we can conceive of confronting corporate power and bringing about a new economy is through our buying decisions… What we really need to do is change the underlying policies that shape our economy. We can’t do that through the sum of our individual behavior in the marketplace. We can only do it by exercising our collective power as citizens."