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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

It Doesn’t Have to Be Like it Always Has Been

We spend most of our life living according to the social structures that were laid down long ago in the past and, though we might moan about them and find ourselves crying alone in the dark trying to cope with them, we don’t know how to do any different. It all seems so much beyond our control.

Take money as an example. It’s just one of many social structures that we take part in every day and it can seem like we have no choice but to do so. But is that really the case?

The money social structure that all of us make use of today was created by the Bank of England in 1694 as a solution to financing the war that William III wished to win. They issued bank notes worth £1,200,000 on paper to the King who promised to pay the debt plus interest of £100,000 in 1706 so that he could pay for the ships, cannons and armour he needed to defeat the French. This was such a successful transaction that the Charter was renewed in 1708 indefinitely so that more wars could be fought and the capture of gold and silver from the vanquished used to pay off the principal and interest.

Today banks are still issuing notes on paper, although most of them these days are just numbers held on a computer to record the debt, so that governments, businesses and individuals can pay for the goods and services they need to carry on fighting wars or to destroy each other and the planet in some other way.

Inherent in this social structure is the paying back of interest that has never been created. All money issued today by banks is based on a debt contract. The principal amount is created, either on paper or on silicon, but principal and interest needs to be paid back to the bank who loaned the principal. This can be a substantial amount. A mortgage over 20 or 30 years will result in more interest to pay than principal. So where does the interest come from. How do we find it?

The answer is that it has got to be created as principal by someone else and we have to earn it from them. So, inherent in this social structure is struggle. There is never as much money in existence as there is principal and interest that needs to be paid. Therefore we have to compete or even fight with each other to capture other people’s treasure in order to survive. Some do better than others. Some businesses are doomed to failure. Some individuals are doomed to destitution. It is an inevitable part of the social structure. Which ones win and which ones lose is the game that we are all forced into playing.

Why? This is not a natural law. It is a social structure that can be changed. Money is not a naturally existing commodity. It is invented. And bankers invented it so that they can grow rich on all the foreclosures and asset stripping while the destitute sink to their knees in utter poverty. It is they who encourage competition in the world of mankind by creating a scarcity for the money supply. They are still doing it. They advertise that they are friendly and helpful but in truth it is their structures that bring about misery and suffering for so many of us.

positivemoney

How about creating a different social structure based on co-operation and caring for each other? Is it completely beyond our capabilities to build these values into more of our social world? Last year – as you can see from the image above, parliament actually debated money creation for the first time in 170 years. Did anything come of it? Very few people turned up! You can watch the actual debate on video here to find out what was discussed.

It’s not just about money, though. What about the social structure called hierarchy? Why do we value the giving of orders higher than the ability to carry them out? Why do we value mental abilities over physical labour? Have we developed these as a result of this need to dominate others encouraged by bankers? Both mental and physical prowess are associated with battling for survival and are highly competitive traits. What if there could actually be an abundance of food, shelter, energy, craftsmanship, drama, artistic pursuits and community fellowship arising out of our co-operation and creativity – enough to satisfy us all? What need would there be then for hierarchy and competition apart from in an overflow of spirit and good humour to provide entertainment and sport?

You know it doesn’t have to be like it is at the moment, don’t you?

Together we can create a totally different set of social structures based on the values we share. Why not come and join us at our AGM in December and start to discover what our shared values are and how we can set about constructing a different way for us all to live together in Lancaster? You would be most welcome.

 

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