Tag Archives: aristotle

Ten Economic Policies To Unite A Nation

29 May

he-who-experiences-the-unity-of-life-sees-buddha

Regular readers will be well aware of my excoriating views on the practice of usury — the making of gain (profit) from money; the unnatural “birth of money from money”.

In this, I happily find myself to be in esteemed company.

With all the forefathers of Western thought and jurisprudence (Plato, Aristotle, Cato, Cicero, Seneca, Plutarch, et al).

With the religious divines of all times and places (Buddha, Moses, Vashishtha, Jesus, Mohammed, Aquinas, Luther, and many more).

And … with Adolf Hitler.

(Do I have your attention now?)

I have no doubt that very few, if any, Australian readers would know that the central plank in the economic policy platform of The National Socialist German Workers’ Party, was the abolition of usury.

That following the devastating impacts of losing World War I, the crushingly punitive war reparations imposed by the Treaty of Versailles, and the resultant hyperinflation of the Weimar Republic, the economic policies introduced by the NSDA on coming to power inspired what is arguably the greatest, and most rapid economic transformation of a nation in modern history.

Or that — if we choose to first set aside our conditioned prejudices, and consider the matter with cool impartiality — we will discover that many of us would support precisely the same economic policies, in response to the economic challenges of our own times.

Before we get to those policies, let us first consider the following commentary/introduction by Pedert Gottfried in “The Program of the NSDA”, The National Socialist German Workers’ Party and its General Conceptions, translated by E.T.S. Digdale, Fritz Eher Verlag, Munich, 1932.

Read without prejudice.

I have included underlines for emphasis:

Adolf Hitler prints the Party Program’s two main points in leaded type: “The Common Interest Before Self: The Spirit of the Program” and, Abolition of the Thralldom of Interest: The Core of National Socialism.” Once these two points are achieved, it means a victory of the approaching universalist ordering of society in the true state over the present-day separation of state, nation and economics under the corrupting influence of the individualist theory of society as now constructed.

The sham state of today, oppressing the working classes and protecting the pirated gains of bankers and stock exchange speculators, is the area for reckless private enrichment and for the lowest political profiteering; it gives no thought to its people, and provides no high moral bond of union. The power of money, most ruthless of all powers, holds absolute control, and exercises corrupting, destroying influence on state, nation, society, morals, drama, literature and on all matters of morality, less easy to estimate.

Break down the thralldom of interest” is our war cry. What do we mean by thralldom of interest? The landowner is under this thralldom, who has to raise loans to finance his farming operations, loans at such high interest as almost to eat up the results of his labor or who is forced to make debts and to drag the mortgages after him like so much weight of lead.

So is the worker producing in shops and factories for a pittance, whilst the shareholder draws dividends and bonuses which he has not worked for. So is the earning middle class, whose work goes almost entirely to pay the interest on bank overdrafts.

Thralldom of interest is the real expression for the antagonisms, capital versus labor, blood versus money, creative work versus exploitation. The necessity of breaking this thralldom is of such vast importance for our nation and our race, that on it alone depends our nation’s hope of rising up from its shame and slavery; in fact, the hope of recovering happiness, prosperity and civilization through out the world. It is the pivot on which everything turns; it is far more than a mere necessity of financial policy. Whilst its principles and consequences bite deep into political and economic life, it is a leading question for economic study, and thus affects every single individual and demands a decision from each one: Service to the nation or unlimited private enrichment. It means a solution of the Social Question.

Our financial principle: Finance shall exist for the benefit of the state; the financial magnates shall not form a state within the state. Hence our aim to break the thralldom of interest.

Relief of the state, and hence of the nation, from its indebtedness to the great financial houses, which lend on interest.

Nationalization of the Reichsbank [central bank] and the issuing houses [commercial banks], which lend on interest.

Provision of money for all great public objects (waterpower, railroads etc), not by means of loans, but by granting non-interest bearing state bonds or without using ready money.

Introduction of a fixed standard of currency on a secured basis.

Creation of a national bank of business development for granting non-interest bearing loans.

Fundamental remodeling of the system of taxation on social-economic principles. Relief of the consumer from the burden of indirect taxation, and of the producer from crippling taxation.

Wanton printing of bank notes, without creating new values, means inflation. We all lived through it. But the correct conclusion is that an issue of non-interest-bearing bonds by the state cannot produce inflation if new values are at the same time created.

The fact that today great economic enterprises cannot be set on foot without recourse to loans is sheer lunacy. Here is where reasonable use of the state’s right to produce money which might produce most beneficial results.

Let it be clearly understood, gentle reader, that my statement of agreement with the above is just that.

Agreement with the above. In particular, with the underlined passages.

Hence, a polite request.

Please do not insult my intelligence, and more importantly, your own, by falsely conflating my agreement with the above, with any contrived notion or implication that this somehow also constitutes an approval — tacit, or otherwise — of any other words (much less, actions) of the German state of the 1930’s – 1940’s.

I have one observation to make in that regard.

And it is this.

It is entirely possible — indeed, it is exceedingly common — for a person (and by extension, a nation) to be right in principle, but wrong in practice.

Which is why I condemn the (a)moral code, cherished by power-hungry sociopaths of all stations in life, which asserts that “the Ends justify the Means”.

*************

It may now be of interest to the discerning reader, to consider thoughtfully and without prejudice the first of the economic policy demands listed in the NSDA’s 25 point “Program” of 1932 (underline added):

Therefore we demand:

11. That all unearned income, and all income that does not arise from work, be abolished.

Breaking the Bondage of Interest

12. Since every war imposes on the people fearful sacrifices in blood and treasure, all personal profit arising from the war must be regarded as treason to the people. We therefore demand the total confiscation of all war profits.

13. We demand the nationalization of all trusts.

14. We demand profit-sharing in large industries.

15. We demand a generous increase in old-age pensions.

16. We demand the creation and maintenance of a sound middle-class, the immediate communalization of large stores which will be rented cheaply to small tradespeople, and the strongest consideration must be given to ensure that small traders shall deliver the supplies needed by the State, the provinces and municipalities.

17. We demand an agrarian reform in accordance with our national requirements, and the enactment of a law to expropriate the owners without compensation of any land needed for the common purpose. The abolition of ground rents, and the prohibition of all speculation in land.

18. We demand that ruthless war be waged against those who work to the injury of the common welfare. Traitors, usurers, profiteers, etc., are to be punished with death, regardless of creed or race.

20. In order to make it possible for every capable and industrious German to obtain higher education, and thus the opportunity to reach into positions of leadership, the State must assume the responsibility of organizing thoroughly the entire cultural system of the people. The curricula of all educational establishments shall be adapted to practical life. The conception of the State Idea (science of citizenship) must be taught in the schools from the very beginning. We demand that specially talented children of poor parents, whatever their station or occupation, be educated at the expense of the State.

21. The State has the duty to help raise the standard of national health by providing maternity welfare centers, by prohibiting juvenile labor, by increasing physical fitness through the introduction of compulsory games and gymnastics, and by the greatest possible encouragement of associations concerned with the physical education of the young.

Would you be inclined to support any of these economic policies, here in our own times?

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Looking For A Root

28 May

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“In Keynes’s view capitalism’s driving force is a vice which he called ‘love of money’ … in the General Theory ‘the propensity to hoard’ or ‘liquidity preference’ plays a vital part in the mechanics of an economy’s rundown, once something has happened to make investment less attractive. And this links up with Keynes’s sense that, at some level too deep to be captured by mathematics, ‘love of money’ as an end, not a means, is at the root of the world’s economic problem.”

Robert Skidelsky; “John Maynard Keynes: Vol. 2, The Economist As Saviour 1920-1937″ (1994)

“There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one striking at the root.”

– Henry David Thoreau

Would you be inclined to agree, that the best way to solve a problem, is to begin by looking for a root?

Economy

Definition of economy

1. the state of a country or region in terms of the production and consumption of goods and services and the supply of money

Oxford Dictionary

Who is responsible for the “supply of money”?

Changes in the quantity of money may originate with actions of the Federal Reserve System (the central bank), depository institutions (principally commercial banks), or the public. The major control, however, rests with the central bank.

– Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Modern Money Mechanics: A Workbook on Bank Reserves and Deposit Expansion

How is “money” supplied?

The actual process of money creation takes place primarily in banks. As noted earlier, checkable liabilities of banks are money. These liabilities are customers’ accounts. They increase when customers deposit currency and checks and when the proceeds of loans made by the banks are credited to borrowers’ accounts.

– Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Modern Money Mechanics: A Workbook on Bank Reserves and Deposit Expansion

Why is money supplied (by banks)?

…banks basically make money…

Investopedia

How do banks “make money” (ie, make profits)?

by lending money at rates higher than the cost of the money they lend. More specifically, banks collect interest on loans and interest payments from the debt securities they own, and pay interest on deposits, CDs, and short-term borrowings. The difference is known as the “spread,” or the net interest income…

Investopedia

Er… let’s hear that again … HOW do banks “make money” (profits)?

They make money just like any other business. The difference is that their product is money. In other words banks sell money, mostly in the form of loans. Their profit is the difference between what they pay in interest on your deposits and what you pay them in interest for the loan they made you. Banks also charge fees for services.

National Australia Bank, How Banks Work

What is “interest”?

The charge for the privilege of borrowing money, typically expressed as an annual percentage rate.

Investopedia

Is interest on money natural?

The most hated sort (of money-making), and with the greatest reason, is usury, which makes a gain out of money itself and not from the natural use of it. For money was intended merely for exchange, not for increase at interest. And this term interest (“tokos”, i.e., “children”), which implies the birth of money from money, is applied to the breeding of money, because the offspring resembles the parent. Wherefore of all modes of money-making, this is the most unnatural.

– Aristotle, Politics, Book One, Part X (c. 350 BC)

DIGGING DOWN

  • The global economy has a problem.
  • The supply of money is a defining component in the functioning of the economy.
  • Banks supply the money in the economy.
  • Banks supply the money by creating it ex nihilo (“out of nothing”).
  • Banks create new money when they make loans.
  • Banks make loans in order to make profits.
  • Banks make profits by charging interest on money they create.
  • Banks make profits by charging more in interest, than they pay in interest.
  • Interest is a charge for the “privilege” of borrowing money.
  • Making money out of money, by charging “interest” / usury on money … is not natural.

Would you be inclined to agree, that it is not a “privilege” but a burden, to have to borrow money at interest?

Would you be inclined to agree, that it is banks who have an incredibly privileged position and role in the functioning of the economy?

Would you be inclined to agree, that it is immoral and unjust to charge “interest” for the “privilege” of “borrowing” something that was created out of nothing — mere electronic digits, typed into a computer?

Would you be inclined to agree, that because banks are legally permitted to make profits from the production of money“their product is money” — that bankers are likely to have a vested interest in selling as much of their product — that is, creating as much debt — as they can get away with?

Is it possible that usury — the making of gains (profit) on the lending of money; the unnatural “birth of money from money” — is the root of the problem in the global economy?

For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

– St. Paul, 1 Timothy 6:10

…no one shall deposit money with another whom he does not trust as a friend, nor shall he lend money upon interest; and the borrower should be under no obligation to repay either capital or interest.

– Plato, Laws, Book V (c. 348 BC)

And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit is that to you? For even sinners lend to sinners to receive as much back. But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High.

– Jesus Christ, Luke 6:34-35

See also:

Imagine A World With No Banks

A Tale Of Usury, Explosions, And A Used Car Salesman

Babylon = Usury: We Want Interest-Free Money at realcurrencies.com

The Biggest Drag On Our Economy

20 Feb

ball-and-chain

What do you think is the biggest drag on our economy?

If you said “usury“, welcome to Club Classically Correct.

Usury is not, as so many would have you believe, the charging of an excessive rate of interest.

That is the modern definition. Banker approved.

The classical definition of usury is commonly attributed to Aristotle:

“There are two sorts of wealth-getting, as I have said; one is a part of household management, the other is retail trade: the former necessary and honorable, while that which consists in exchange is justly censured; for it is unnatural, and a mode by which men gain from one another. The most hated sort, and with the greatest reason, is usury, which makes a gain out of money itself, and not from the natural object of it. For money was intended to be used in exchange, but not to increase at interest. And this term interest (tokos), which means the birth of money from money, is applied to the breeding of money because the offspring resembles the parent. Wherefore of any modes of getting wealth this is the most unnatural.”

– Aristotle, c. 350BC (Politics, Book I, Part X)

Today, our modern “money” system is the pinnacle of the money-lenders’ art.

Or should I say rather, the money-lenders’ “artifice”:

ar·ti·fice
[ahr-tuh-fis]
noun
1. a clever trick or stratagem; a cunning, crafty device or expedient; wile.
2. trickery; guile; craftiness.
3. cunning; ingenuity; inventiveness: a drawing-room comedy crafted with artifice and elegance.
4. a skillful or artful contrivance or expedient.

The vast majority (around 97%) of “money” is simply electronic digits.

Digital bookkeeping entries.

Created by the banking system, every time a person signs up for a new (or bigger) loan.

(See The World’s Most Immoral Institution Tells You How + Think You’ve Got Cash In The Bank? Think Again)

And here is the key to the usurers’ immense power and wealth. They have been given the exclusive rights not just to create this digital “money” in the form of debt that must be repaid. You have to pay back those digital bookkeeping entries with interest.

It is interest – usury – that is the biggest drag on our economy.

Consider this.

According to the ABS, the average size loan for a first home buyer in Australia reached an all-time high $293,900 in December 2012. A typical variable home loan rate right now is 5.6% – that’s with the RBA’s official interest rate at record “emergency” lows, mind you. According to ASIC’s “MoneySmart” online calculator, taking out such a loan right now, and repaying $2,000 a month for the next 20 years and 9 months, would result in your repaying the bank $203,598 in usury alone.

Of course, this assumes that interest rates did not rise in the next 20-something years. If (when) they do, then so too does the amount of usury you must repay to the bank.

Just the other day I was wondering, “Has anyone ever bothered to calculate the total value of one year’s worth of usury repayments, on all home loans in the Australian economy”?

To be frank, I have neither the skills nor the knowledge to make an accurate calculation.

But it is not hard to work out a very rough approximation.  Something that helps give some idea of just what a drag on the economy the repayment of usury on the banks’ digital bookkeeping entries must be.

According to the RBA, at December 2012 the Australian banking system claimed a total $1.136 Trillion in residential loan “Assets”.

(Yes, that’s right. Your signature on a loan document, pledging yourself to decades of debt slavery to repay the bank their digits, is considered the bank’s “Asset”)

According to Canstar’s variable rate home loan comparison chart, a variable mortgage rate of around 5.6% would appear fairly typical right now.

So, as a very basic approximation, if the total value of all the banks’ mortgage “assets” at end December 2012 were on the variable rate of usury, thus earning the banks 5.6% p.a., then (ignoring compounding, which makes the total even higher) the banks’ would stand to earn $63.6 billion in usury on home loans in 2013.

Just imagine all the far better, more productive and valuable uses that much “money” could be put to in 2013 by Aussie households.

Now again, I stress my lack of knowledge on this data. For all I know, the value of expected usury repayments may already be included in the RBA’s total of banks’ mortgage “assets”.

If so, it matters very little. Even a mere 5.6% compound interest on >$1 Trillion in mortgage debts, is a huge annual sum.

Clearly, the drag on the economy from the burden of repaying usury to the bankers on home loans alone, is truly staggering. EPIC.

And when we consider that banks have done nothing to deserve this exclusive right to profit from our lifetime labours, the truth of Aristotle’s observation is only the more clear.

Of any modes of getting wealth, usury is indeed the most unnatural.

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