Keep money in the community: Start by printing it

A group here in Portland has taken the eat local movement one step further and started its own currency. Cascadia Commons has developed Community Way Local Exchange Trading System (LETS), "a non-profit, local community currency that more efficiently provides value to traditional dollars exchanged in a local economy."

Local businesses could, for example, pay their employees in Cascadia Dollars (for some percentage of their salary); dollars could in turn be used at participating businesses, but would be limited from being spent elsewhere due to the borders of the economic region.

While the concept is pretty wonkish, the idea is this: use local money because, after all, we trust each other better than we trust some enormous national bureaucracy.