There are some key policies that I wish to endorseThese are drawn from public statements and documents by Steve Keen, Ann Pettifor and the New Green Deal group, and from Joseph Stiglitz. From amongst their ideas these are the ones I understand (!) and feel confident would make the world a better place. These are economic policies which seem necessary at the moment. My values are centred on qualities like: awareness, empathy, & altruism.
- Modern Debt Jubliee
- Financial Sector Regulation
- Robin Hood Tax
1. Modern Debt Jubilee
"Dishonourable debt should not be honoured." - Steve Keen
Currently we print money and borrow money and give it to the banks. With debt levels so high banks cannot lend. we need to get private and household debt levels down. The banks should never have made most of these loans. So print money but give it to people and business with the proviso that any debts must be paid before spending.
2. Financial Sector Regulation
A fundamental cause of the current crisis, recessions since 1971, and the Great Depression of the 1930s, is unregulated lending, especially lending to fund gambling on assets.
"We need to say to banks in no uncertain terms: you may lend for productive purposes, but you may not lend for speculative purposes. You can't lend to a gambler, but you can lend to someone who's going to do something [in the real economy] and create value, such as making goods & services" -- Ann Pettifor
Banks need to be broken up in two ways. Firstly retail and commercial lending need to be split off from so-called 'investment' banking. Let people gamble their assets on commodities if they must gamble, but let's stop fuelling these bubbles by lending to gambling addicts. And secondly banks more generally need to be smaller. Large banks cause large problems, and have problems with personal relationships.
I would particular also like to see regulation of residential property lending. Speculation on housing has forced prices up and created a housing crisis.
3. Robin Hood Tax
A tax of 0.05% on bank transactions that don't involve the public would raise £100-200 billion per year, to be spent on social projects.
One which is also clear to me is that these policies must be linked to efforts to mitigate the environmental problems we face, particular related to energy and energy use.
On a personal level I believe that we should all downsize, use less, reassess our lifestyle and pursue contentment.