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.
Social Credit political theory readily grants what lies, perhaps, at the root of the democratic urge and which accounts, in large measure, for the popular appeal of ‘democracy’: firstly, that governments should serve the common good of the people and secondly, if governments don’t serve the common good of the people in an effective, efficient, and fair manner, the people who are affected should have the ability to sanction the government so that the quality of government might immediately improve.
At the same time, Douglas was highly critical of the conventional ‘democracies’ that have come to characterize the Liberal West, often describing them as ‘ineffective’. Not only did they fail to serve the common good to the extent that this was physically possible and desirable, they also failed to provide the people with an effective vehicle for remedying this sorry state of affairs. To make matters worse, it was not uncommon for ‘democratic’ governments to impose policies on the population which were contrary to the general will of the population. That is to say, we have been regularly treated to the spectacle of ‘democratic’ governments, so-called, introducing policies that are ‘anti-democratic’ in the deepest and truest sense of that word.
It is peculiar that discussion of governmental policy frequently proceeds with hardly a nod to the most clamant fact in the world of economics, namely the massive, and burgeoning, financial debt that hangs like the sword of Damocles over human society. The dimensions of this debt, which is growing at an exponential rate, have been calculated variously by different organizations applying themselves to its study. One such organization, the Institute of International Finance, has calculated total global debt at the end of 2016 to be $217 trillion, having risen by something approaching a quarter of this sum over just the previous decade. Even more shocking than these numbers is the fact that the aggregate debt is reckoned to be more than three times globally aggregated GDPs.
The implications of a debt-free universal dividend via C.H. Douglas’s Social Credit monetary and economic reform, a dividend that would be distributed equally to everyone, will be far more than just extra cash in one’s wallet. There would be deep and far reaching impacts in the areas of society and culture where changes would occur that would most definitely be for the betterment of mankind.
Conventional schemes for financing a Universal Basic Income tend to take the existing financial system as a given and to assume that there is nothing fundamentally wrong with it. But what if that system is, in fact, deeply flawed? What if it does not operate in full service to the public good, in full service to the common good? What if, through the type of monetary reform known as Social Credit, the provision of an unconditional and basic level of income for every citizen could be secured without taxes and without increasing the public debt?
Freedom is undoubtedly a very great good. It is indeed one of the key objectives and one of the main fruits of any successful social order. But the greatest problem in saying, within the context of association, that one is ‘in favour of personal freedom’ is that ‘freedom’ has come to mean so many different things to so many different people and the various definitions are by no means compatible.
'Are people hopelessly stupid—or do they take some perverse and sick pleasure in being slaves?'
Arindam Basu examines some of the false economic teachings that keep us locked in a pattern of social and economic dysfunction.
“… Social Credit policy is traditional Tory-ism or genuine conservatism expressed in terms applying to industrial capitalism. In a world in which liberal, socialist, and other “left-ist” policies are dominant, Social Credit, as an expression of genuine conservatism appears revolutionary in nature – as indeed it is. A free society rooted in the Christian ethic, which is the goal of traditional conservatism, can be achieved only by bringing to birth a new civilization involving a fundamentally changed viewpoint of human relationships with the nation.”
As today is Remembrance Day, I thought it would be appropriate for us to consider one of the implications of Social Credit theory with respect to war:
"(...) the financial system (...) is, beyond all doubt, the main cause of international friction. Since, as we have seen, no nation can buy its own production, it is inevitable that there will be a struggle for markets in which to get rid of the surplus. The translation of this commercial struggle in a military context is simply a matter of time and opportunity. "
Jordan Peterson, the now famous Psychology Professor from the University of Toronto, has sometimes identified himself as a Classical Liberal. With his rise as an internet phenomenon, the social philosophy of Classical Liberalism and the political/economic systems inspired by it appear to be receiving a fresh impetus (or is it merely a final breath of air?) as the modern society in which we live, a society originally based on the principles of Classical Liberalism, sees itself falling deeper and deeper into a post-modern Marxist tyranny, both economic and cultural.
"A hair divides what is false and true." - Omar Khayyam
One of Jordan Peterson’s central ideas is the notion that human beings, like lobsters, are naturally disposed to arrange themselves socially in ‘dominance hierarchies’. The fundamental claim is that, based on ‘competence’, human beings, and men in particular, compete with each other to determine who will get the greatest rewards, material and otherwise, that a society has to offer, including the ‘right’ to mate and reproduce. Peterson appears to be keen to emphasize the naturalness and indeed the biological and evolutionary rootedness of this behavior because he thinks that it can serve as an unanswerable argument against the Cultural Marxists who despise the very idea of hierarchy and who would wish to see their idol of a totalitarianizing ‘equality’ ruling everywhere.
The basic needs of every human being are critical in understanding what must be adequately fulfilled in order for individuals to achieve a state of well-being. With Maslow’s principles still very relevant to the daily functioning of every human being, it’s no wonder the world population is struggling to fulfil these needs.
From the outset, Social Credit Economics (SCE) demonstrates that it is a well-thought-out, thought-provoking tome for thoughtful individuals. The cover itself aptly sums up the central contention of Social Credit, namely the existence of an imbalance between financial credit (represented by the coins) and real credit (represented by the globe) with the resulting hegemony of finance over the real economy constituting the root cause of the majority of our contemporary misfortunes. SCE goes on to prove this claim and to provide the solutions to the problems it highlights.
Isn’t it about time that we had a financial system that worked for all Americans? The Social Credit proposals of the engineer, Clifford Hugh Douglas, explain the kind of monetary reform that needs to be implemented in order to fix our current dysfunctional debt system.
In our modern, fast-paced society that holds servile work and the fanatical pursuit of money to be the primary aim of our very existence, every adult man and woman must have a paid ‘job’ in order to survive and feel ‘dignified’ lest they suffer the curse of unemployment and the poverty and stigma associated with it, and this despite, or perhaps because of, the paltry and condescending ‘dole’ payments the state may hand out to them.
The modern, industrial system possesses an enormous productive capacity, both actual and potential, to meet our legitimate needs for goods and services. With every technological advancement we can produce more and/or better with less resource consumption and less human labour.
At the very heart of the modern economy we find this thing called ‘finance’. Finance is to the economy what an operating system is to a computer. For it is the financial system which allows an economy’s ‘hardware’ (i.e., its raw materials, labour, machinery, etc.) to be actualized in the service of specific ‘software applications’ (i.e., production programmes). As far as the formal economy is concerned, it is true to say that finance is the essential interface and animating principle.
The idea of a family is that of a social unit of human beings which has traditionally been composed of: two adults, one male and one female, and then children or offspring that are biologically begotten by the adult male and female living together in union, in the form of a formal, exclusive, and life-long marriage bond. This family structure may also include extended family with grandparents and grandchildren and their own begotten children living together.
From something a Distributist once said to me about the primacy of the moral in economics, I wonder if the following might explain Distributism’s reticence where Social Credit was concerned.
Just last week, Equifax Canada, a credit reporting agency, revealed that the average outstanding consumer debt per adult person in Canada (excluding mortgages) had increased 3.6% over the course of a one-year period to 22,081 CDN.
As a follow-up to my recent blog entry "Social Credit and Mass Migration", I thought it would be instructive to examine the various issues that are at play in a more concrete fashion.
The world in which we live can seem like a strange and incoherent puzzle.
For those that take more than a passing interest in world affairs we have before us an array of pieces. We see the problems of poverty and social unrest and we lament the damage that we are doing to nature.
The financial system, that is, the banking, cost accounting, and tax systems, can either serve the common good, or else it will serve an oligarchic elite at the expense of the common good.
We live now in an age of mass migrations and of rumours of mass migrations. With the term ‘mass migration’ we are referring, of course, to the movement, not merely of large numbers of people, but of whole groups of people, who constitute various racial-cultural gestalts, en masse from one nation or region to another.
What is Social Credit? I have often been asked to explain it in a nutshell. So, as far as the purely economic aspects of Social Credit are concerned, here it goes
Clearly the satisfaction of citizens’ material needs is not the objective of the present economic order. Australians will be painfully aware that the purpose of economics is ‘jobs and growth’ or, in other words, compounding economic activity.
As I explained in my first article for The Distributist Review, the economic proposals of Social Credit aim at the establishment of a widespread distribution of private productive property ownership through the means of monetary reform.
As every distributist knows, there are three basic economic systems. The first upholds private ownership of the means of production but concentrates it in the hands of the few...
In the period between the two world wars, a British engineer by the name of Clifford Hugh Douglas (1879-1952) developed a highly original economic theory.
One of the axioms of the existing economic order is the policy of ‘Full Employment’ (FE). Everyone must work for his daily bread or be dependent on those who do when he is unable to work or when insufficient work is available.
One of the more worthwhile currents in contemporary philosophy is the school of thought known as ‘personalism’. Whereas other philosophers might ponder on the nature of knowledge, of morality, or of ultimate reality, personalist philosophers take a special interest in personal being as the central object of their preoccupations.
When Vice President Joe Biden made his 10th appearance at the annual World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, to address the forum’s central 2016 topic: “The Fourth Industrial Revolution,” he communed with assorted elitists to salute the coming of age of automation and robotics.
At the end of Mass last Sunday, we were treated to an urgent appeal on behalf of the community food drive. I find these appeals incredibly annoying.
I dislike charities, all charities ... and it is not because I am not a charitable person.
The foregoing poem is widely, and quite probably falsely, attributed to the great Persian poet Hafez (1325/26–1389/90 AD). Be that as it may, “The Sun Never Says” successfully highlights the reality...
The following article (including the foreword) was written by the late Victor J. Bridger, a long-standing Social Crediter from Australia. Mr. Bridger, who had attempted in various ways to popularize Social Credit, had been involved with the Social Credit movement for over 50 years.
Last month’s blog entry explained what Social Crediters mean when they speak about the ‘monopoly of credit’. In this entry we will examine why the ‘monopoly of credit’ is a problem and what Social Credit proposes to do about it.
In perusing Social Credit literature, a phrase that one encounters quite frequently is the “Monopoly of Credit”. Indeed, The Monopoly of Credit was the title of C.H. Douglas’ last major technical work dedicated to the exposition of Social Credit economics. Since the phrase is often employed without being precisely defined, and since some Social Crediters use it without being conscious of its exact meaning...
Can we rediscover ourselves? Could we then discover each other? Whether these questions are as crazy as they may seem at first sight is the subject of this essay.
"The unacknowledged, but obvious, truth is that unnecessary work, imposed by either edict or contrived financial legerdemain, is slavery and servitude—totally irrational and immoral. Every engineer worthy of the name is trying to eliminate the need for human effort as a factor of production while every witless or hypocritical politician, pressured by the financial powers above and an insecure and uncomprehending population below, is professing, at least, to promote policies designed to ‘put people back to work'.”
“Subsidiarity” is the name given to the principle that a central authority should have a subsidiary function, performing only those tasks which cannot be performed at a more local level.
The latest encyclical, Laudato Si, is generating a great deal of heat both inside and outside of the Catholic Church – and more heat than light I am afraid. Instead of discussing the various and, in some cases, quite serious scientific, philosophical, and theological concerns that a number of commentators have raised in reference to it (consider, for example, the following interview with Chris Ferrara:
Imagine this situation. Your neighbour’s dog keeps you awake at night with its relentless barking. You go to your neighbour, tell him the problem and ask him what he is going to do about it. His response is to tell you there is no dog and hence no problem, have a nice day.
It is the purpose of Social Credit proposals regarding finance to make the figures fit the facts. In other words, the subordination of finance to reality.
In the modern world money is simply accountancy. It's issued by banks for production. Producers distribute it as effective purchasing-power as wages, salaries and dividends which are a part of industrial costs and prices. Industry must recover its costs through sales to the consumer and the money is then cancelled until reissued for a new cycle of production. Thus is created an endless cycle of money creation and destruction. Money is not a store of value and is increasingly a means of distribution rather than a means of exchange.
After reading Dick Eastman's recent post on Abeldanger, I am left asking myself: where does one begin?
For the sake of the record, let me make it clear that...
The opening lines of Douglas’ The Monopoly of Credit, first published in 1931, say:
"It cannot have escaped the observations of anyone interested in the welfare and orderly progress of society that, more especially in the years which have intervened since the close of the European War and the present time...
Social Credit refers to the philosophical, economic, political, and historical ideas of the brilliant Anglo-Scottish engineer, Major Clifford Hugh Douglas (1879-1952).
Social Credit is the brainchild of Major C. H. Douglas. During World War l, he was asked to sort out some problems at an aircraft factory in Farnborough and came across a discrepancy in their books. The factory generated costs at a much greater rate than it made available incomes to people. Thinking this curious, Douglas investigated a hundred or so British companies to discover that this imbalance was a general feature of modern industry. Wages, salaries and dividends paid to people by a factory, or other productive undertaking, were nearly always only a portion of total prices for goods made available by the same factory. This perplexed him because it guaranteed a quantity of goods that could not be sold, and what was the point of expending energy on making something that couldn’t, for financial reasons, be consumed?
Systems that aim to organise people can be placed into one of two groups; systems that limit peoples' freedoms and those that increase them. The latter philosophy is the foundation of the Social Credit movement conceived by the Anglo-Scottish Engineer Major Clifford Hugh Douglas.
Just last year, the Bank of England openly admitted that the private banks are responsible for creating the bulk of the money supply out of nothing. This is significant, because although the truth about the bank creation of money has been floating around in the public forum for at least the last one hundred years (largely due to the efforts of C.H. Douglas and others), some bankers and economists have denied this reality (while others, like Reginald McKenna, have been quite open about it) . Even today, there are many people, including many politicians, who are blissfully unaware and/or seriously misinformed regarding the origin of our money supply.
At the height of the Great Depression, the founder of the Social Credit movement, Major Clifford Hugh Douglas (1879-1952), described the proposal for a National Dividend in the following terms:
Over the course of the last few years, the Greek people have had first-hand experience of the fact that the modern financial and economic systems do not work. They may not know, however, why they do not work and what can be done in order to fix them.
A key component of the philosophy, or the 'conception of reality', which underlies Social Credit is the idea that the universe is governed by laws that are automatic and inexorable. These laws exist independently of human cognition and human preference.
As I tried to show in my recent blog entry on “Social Credit and Usury”, the claim that usury, defined as the charging of interest on loans, is THE problem and that Social Credit means nothing more than “usury-free money” is a serious but all too common misrepresentation of the Social Credit diagnosis and remedial proposals.
The modern, industrial economy (and civilization at large) is in dire need of a Copernican-style transformation: society’s financial credit must be subordinated to its real credit. The Social Credit monetary reform provides both the policy and the appropriate mechanisms to make this superior possibility a reality.
As interest in the economics of Social Credit grows, it is important to provide people with accurate and comprehensive summaries of C.H. Douglas' analysis and remedial proposals. In what follows, I will outline in seven points the salient features of the Social Credit approach to economic questions.
Quite recently, Dr. David Pascoe, a veterinary surgeon from Queensland, Australia, has made headlines after writing a public letter to the Australian people and releasing it on the internet via social media. In that letter, which has now gone viral, Dr. Pascoe takes the private banks to task for the horrible treatment that they have meted out to drought-stricken farmers in the northwestern part of the state.
In a blog entry that is well worth reading entitled "What Choice Do We Have?", Charles Hugh Smith discusses the extreme and ever-increasing income inequality that characterizes economic life in the modern world (amongst other closely related issues):
While I am staunchly pro-life and hold that direct abortion should be prohibited by force of law (as it was under British common law and throughout the Western world until the sixties and seventies), it is important to recognize that abortion is a problem that needs to be counteracted or neutralized on a variety of different levels.
One of Canada's big 5, Scotiabank, recently announced that it will be cutting 1,500 jobs. This, in spite of the fact that the bank has, so far this year, earned as much as 5.57 billion dollars in profit ... according to the official numbers ;).
The following was submitted by Liam Allone of economiccures.com
I can demonstrate the fundamental gap or “shortage of money” that is built into the money system the entire world – without exception – is using at both a macro and micro level
When trying to grasp the Social Credit approach to economic matters, it is important to keep the following three principles in mind...
Portugal has a long history of expressing social and political commentary and activism in musical forms. Indeed, the near bloodless coup which toppled the dictatorship in the 1974 Carnation Revolution was heralded (quite literally) by Grandola Vila Morena, a song...
One of the most common misunderstandings where Social Credit is concerned is the notion that the Social Credit diagnosis can be adequately summarized along the following lines: "The problem with the existing financial system is that the banks create money out of nothing in the form of bank credit and then proceed to charge interest on the money that they loan out. Unfortunately, they do not create the money to pay the interest and this leads to a continual build-up of unrepayable debts, etc., etc." This popularized interpretation of Social Credit is erroneous.
Although I disagree profoundly with Walter Russell’s ‘New-Agey’ worldview and spirituality, I think that he was on to something when he claimed that the very essence of the created universe consists in ‘rhythmic balanced interchange’. In a similar vein, I think that the type of changes envisaged by a Social Credit monetary reform (in clear contradistinction to all other monetary reform proposals) may be duly encapsulated in terms of ‘distributive self-liquidating balance’. Let us examine each of these elements in turn and in reverse order.
It seems that more and more people in various countries are starting to take proposals for the introduction of a basic income quite seriously.
In our contemporary world, dominated as it is by a dysfunctional (read unbalanced) financial system that is leveraged by a credit monopoly, indigenous folk cultures are being threatened and gradually eroded.
The following review of my booklet The Economics of Social Credit and Catholic Social Teaching was recently published by James Reed in Australia:
One of the chief misapprehensions under which newcomers to the subject often labour is that 'Social Credit' must be some form of socialism because, after all, the phrase encompasses the word ‘social’. So that there may be no confusion, let it be made clear that in spite of the appearance of the word ‘social’ in ‘Social Credit’, Social Credit is not only not socialistic but decidedly anti-socialist.
Some time ago, I had the following conversation with a loans officer from a major Canadian bank:
Wally: When you issue these loans to borrowers you create the money out of nothing, don't you?
A few days ago, a friend of mine brought my attention to an article that had been published just recently in Crisis Magazine. The article was entitled “Why Leisure is the Remedy for Sloth”:
In his book Credit-Power and Democracy, C.H. Douglas introduced the A+B theorem as follows:
"A factory or other productive organization has, besides its economic function as a producer of goods, a financial aspect – it may...
One of the key aspects, if not the key aspect, of the Social Credit analysis of financial and hence economic dysfunction has to do with the chronic and underlying deficiency in consumer purchasing power
As this is the inaugural blog entry for 'The Clifford Hugh Douglas Institute for the Study and Promotion of Social Credit’, it seemed fitting to deal upfront with the central question which invariably preoccupies the minds of most newcomers to the subject: what exactly is Social Credit?