Harbinger

Britain’s rejection of the Euro agreement may give an indication of the willingness and rate at which countries will adopt NPV as the tool with which to manage their economies.

The current European crisis only underscores not only how much politics and economics are intertwined, but also the pervasive extent to which banking and corporate interests control the fate of nations. British Prime Minister Cameron’s defense of sovereignty is nothing more than a protective move for City of London, Britain’s equivalent to Wall Street, against external regulation. The shared currency is also lending Germany moral authority over Greece’s comparatively laid-back approach. If these enlightened countries cannot co-operate in monetary matters, would they do any better with a universal Net Planetary Value system?

In the first place, there will be no currency, common or national, to give rise to differentials,  inflation, devaluation, deficits, or any of the multitudinous variables which give rise to international friction. Each country’s NPV is simply a reflection of what each contributes. It is possible that Greece with its history, archaeology and contribution to the foundation of Western thought, in addition to its other resources, would come out ahead, thumb its nose at Germany, and relax into its more leisurely lifestyle. NPV actually restores a degree of sovereignty to countries, freed from the shackles of banks and corporate interests.

Precisely because financial interests so closely control governments, the countries of the developed west, especially the UK and USA, will be least likely to adopt NPV. Like Iceland repudiating its debt, countries like Greece and the other PIGS could very well decide to opt for a system that gives its citizens universal education and healthcare, feeds and houses them. They would not have to worry about meeting IMF, World Bank or European Central bank conditions, or balancing budgets to engender investors’ confidence. Each country remains free to continue or adopt whatever form of governance its national idiosyncracies determine.

The developing world will readily recognize a good deal where the welfare of their citizens is safeguarded and they are not under the thumb of the money-gougers and resource extractors. The newly formed Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, led by Venezuela, Bolivia and Brazil, expressly omits US and Canadian participation. Resistance to US hegemony and corporate capitalist incursions may be the goad for these countries to abandon the monetary system, regain their sovereignties and release their peoples from wage and debt slavery.

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Moneytheism

Like belief in God, money has such a hold on most people’s world view that it is difficult to question, much more to dislodge. Atheists must face a similar challenge even having a rational conversation with theists. The problem with changing conditioning is that people are not aware that they are conditioned in the first place, like alcoholics who are not aware, and do not acknowledge, that they have a problem.

Economists and presumably well-educated correspondents with whom the PANACEA concept has been shared, have been unanimous in ignoring it. I can only conjecture that they recoil in pity and disbelief at the ravings of a clearly unbalanced mind, or that it is so completely outside their frame of reference that its assumptions and conclusions have no bearing on the solid realities of their familiarity. To spare my feelings or avoid discomfiture at having to dismiss what i have so obviously put much thought into, they choose silence. Maybe i will go away. Unfortunately, the hydra-headed monster of the present and mounting crisis will not.

Progressive, leftist and liberal economists with whose work i am familiar, such as Herman Daly, Bernard Lietaer, David Korten and Gar Alperovitz, remain staunchly moneytheistic, nary an agnostic doubt arising to cloud their critical but clearly monetary vision. In the same way perhaps that Christianity held sway in some minds for such a long time that it became conflated with religion, so monetarism appears to be the only form of economics. This would make primitivists, followers of Adam Smith, Keynes, the Austrian School, Schumacher and Friedman alike, all adherents, but of different denominations of the Church Monetary. Ecological economists’ calls for no-growth, carbon reduction, regulations, community participation, co-ops and localization are essential elements for achieving a steady-state economy but those are only a part of the answer, the major portion of which has to be a systemic change.

The only sounds of apostasy are coming from the fringe, voices from the edge. Jacque Fresco and The Venus Project, promoted by Peter Joseph and the Zeitgeist Movement are the main protestants calling for the abolition of money. The ascetics would be Mark Boyle, Heidemarie Schwermer and others who have withdrawn to their personal hermitages. They all bring a philosophical and visionary weight to the movement toward transformation. For that movement to be successful it will need to reach and convert a mass of ordinary folk who recognize the critical danger we are in and are prepared to countenance the hitherto unthinkable.

To abandon moneytheism is the beginning of new life for the world and all that is in it.

Obsolete people

Are the American people obsolete?
The richest few don’t need the rest of us as markets, soldiers or police anymore. Maybe we should all emigrate

In every industrial democracy since the end of World War II, there has been a social contract between the few and the many. In return for receiving a disproportionate amount of the gains from economic growth in a capitalist economy, the rich paid a disproportionate percentage of the taxes needed for public goods and a safety net for the majority.
Michael Lind

Cleverly written piece but like so much commentary, short on solutions. The elite do not own real wealth, they only control the symbols (money) of it. That money is equated with power, used to control the rest of us, the now notorious 99%. What jobs cannot be automated have been outsourced to cheaper labor markets. Modern warfare is conducted at a distance using automated systems so cannon fodder will become increasingly unnecessary. Policing however will be a growth sector as greater numbers will be needed to subdue mounting unrest.

What the 1% does not seem to realize is that the great unwashed and unhoused masses are an essential part of the equation. Leaving them out brings down the entire economy. As wage slaves they are not mere cogs in the machine to be discarded and replaced by electronic circuits. They are also consumers of the end product, by orthodox reckoning responsible for generating 70% of GDP, meaningless as that index is.

If we eliminate money and implement a values-based system the elite can hang on to their riches and repair to an appropriate niche for the survival and sustainability of the environment and all in it.