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Lives of Our Own

Social Credit, Catholicism, and a Distributist Social Order

The general purpose of "Lives of Our Own" is to introduce Social Credit economics to Distributists. There are a number of points of contact as well as important differences between these two schools of alternative economic thinking. Whereas Distributism tends to look toward the past, the economics of the British engineer, C.H. Douglas, is future-oriented while seeking to conserve the best from the pre-capitalist economic tradition. In general, Social Credit may be described as a species of archaeo-futurism, a re-interpretation and application of certain Distributist principles to the modern, industrial world.

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Latest Articles

  • Financial Credit as a Merit Good
    The debt­-finance system, by generating a chronic insufficiency of purchasing power, thereby requiring increased borrowing (in lieu of large trade surpluses) if economic activity is not to grind to a halt, causes the State ­ with its great, almost unlimited capacity to borrow, thanks to its power to tax (i.e. creditors are eager to lend to it in the knowledge that it will always have a means to pay them back), to expand its role in the economy. Thus, as society finds its purchasing power increasingly insufficient to satisfy its requirements, the State steps in, with its role becoming larger and larger as it fills the growing gap. Caught unawares by these developments, which they were utterly incapable of anticipating, economists scrambled to come up with theories explaining ­ and indeed, justifying ­ such extensive government intervention.
    Wednesday, 29 August 2018 14:16
  • Visualizing the Gap
    The central contention of the Social Credit critique of contemporary economic management (or rather mismanagement) is the existence of a gap between prices and incomes in the operation of any modern economy - i.e. an economy based on debt-finance and multi-stage, mechanized production. This underlying deficiency of purchasing power, makes it impossible to liquidate the costs of production without resorting to increased debt and/or a large trade surplus - since prices cannot fall below costs without putting the continued operation of an enterprise in peril, (unless it can rely on direct or indirect government support). Furthermore, the critique contends that this gap is bound to grow as the economy becomes more sophisticated - i.e. as production involves more and more stages, and use of machinery increases - entailing spiralling debt and increasing trade tensions if the necessary financial remedies are not applied.
    Tuesday, 28 August 2018 13:37
  • Social Credit and Democracy: The Problem - Part Two
    In this second article, I will continue to examine some of the structural problems with conventional democratic political systems that Douglas had identified in the course of his writings, especially in the writings of his latter years. Beyond the particular defects in the voting system which were discussed in the previous month’s article, there are also problems with the party system and with how the voting and party systems interact with each other. Since there is quite a bit of information to cover, I beg the reader’s indulgence if the following is reminiscent of a lawyer’s seriatim brief.
    Monday, 20 August 2018 17:27