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From http://www.truthout.org

Time for a New Theory of Money

What the current banks do:

The banks are not really creating credit and advancing it to us, counting on our future productivity to pay it off, the way they once did under the deceptive but functional façade of fractional reserve lending. Instead, they are vacuuming up our money and lending it back to us at higher rates. In the shadow banking system, they are sucking up our real estate and lending it back to our pension funds and mutual funds at compound interest. The result is a mathematically impossible pyramid scheme, which is inherently prone to systemic failure.

What public banks do:

By turning banking into a public utility, profits generated by the community can be returned to the community.

The functional equivalent of a community currency system can be achieved using the national currency, by forming a publicly owned bank. By turning banking into a public utility operated for the benefit of the community, the virtues of the expandable credit system of the medieval bankers can be retained, while avoiding the parasitic exploitation to which private banking schemes are prone. Profits generated by the community can be returned to the community.

A public bank that generates credit in the national currency could be established by a community or group of any size, but as long as we have capital and reserve requirements and other stringent banking laws, a state is the most feasible option. It can easily meet those requirements without jeopardizing the solvency of its collective owners.

State-owned banks could be a way for states to bypass Wall Street, balance their budgets, and get local economies moving.

For capital, a state bank could use some of the money stashed in a variety of public funds. This money need not be spent. It can just be shifted from the Wall Street investments where it is parked now into the state’s own bank. There is precedent establishing that a state-owned bank can be both a very sound and a very lucrative investment. The Bank of North Dakota, currently the nation’s only state-owned bank, is rated AA and recently returned a 26 percent profit to the state. A decentralized movement has been growing in the United States to explore and implement this option. [For more information, see public-banking.com.]

We have emerged from the financial crisis with new clarity: Money today is simply credit. When the credit is advanced by a bank, when the bank is owned by the community, and when the profits return to the community, the result can be a functional, efficient, and sustainable system of finance.

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A fantastic post about how past civilizations have dealt with the shift from complex to simple…Empire to Feudalism… It’s a story as old as civilization itself..and we are next in line…

Excerpt from “After Money” by John Michael Greer

As the rising spiral of economic trouble continues, we can expect drastic volatility in the value and availability of money – and here again, remember that this term refers to any form of wealth that only has value because it can be exchanged for something else. Any economic activity that is solely a means of bringing in money will be held hostage to the vagaries of the tertiary economy, whether those express themselves through inflation, credit collapse, or what have you. Any economic activity that produces goods and services directly for the use of the producer, and his or her family and community, will be much less drastically affected by these vagaries. If you depend on your salary to buy vegetables, for example, how much you can eat depends on the value of money at any given moment; if you grow your own vegetables, using your own kitchen and garden scraps to fertilize the soil and saving your own seed, you have much more direct control over your vegetable supply.

Most people won’t have the option of separating themselves completely from the money economy for many years to come; as long as today’s governments continue to function, they will demand money for taxes, and money will continue to be the gateway resource for many goods and services, including some that will be very difficult to do without. Still, there’s no reason why distancing oneself from the tertiary economy has to be an all-or-nothing thing. Any step toward the direct production of goods and services for one’s own use, with one’s own labor, using resources under one’s own direct control, is a step toward the world that will emerge after money; it’s also a safety cushion against the disintegration of the money economy going on around us – a point I’ll discuss in more detail, by way of a concrete example, in next week’s post.

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Excellent review of the financial crises of the 80s…also suggests that the present crisis finds its roots there…

Lessons From The 80s: Nothing New Under The Sun

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I’ve read in a number of places that nothing should be done to break up mega banks and to expose the fraud that has become the cornerstone of the American political and economic systems because it is too risky. Which is to say it’s too difficult to put the genie (i.e. “Fraud”) back in the bottle.
Should BP give up on trying to fix the hole in the bottom of the sea that’s spewing black death into the Ocean because it’s extremely difficult and expensive to pull off?

This Financial Crisis is one of the greatest man made disaster ever unleashed. The Collapse of Lehman was the Deep Horizon toppling into the sea and the obstructionism on Capitol Hill is equivalent to just sitting on the shore and sipping mohitos while waiting for the slick to devastate the shore.

It would seem that the oligarchy has no qualms whatsoever about hanging Civilization as we know it over the Abyss of financial ruin by its ankles, I’m starting to think that sky’s the limit on what these people are willing and capable of doing. (more…)

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