Democratizing Money

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An Action Agenda

What is created by human choice can be changed by human choice. Wall Street's useful and essential functions -- serving as a depository for savings, financing home ownership and business development, insuring against risk, and clearing check and credit card transactions -- can be organized in ways that are more efficient, accountable, and responsive than the current Wall Street model. 

The New Economy goal is a money system designed to assure transparency and public accountability, a stable non-inflationary money supply, meaningful and fairly compensated employment for all who seek it, environmental balance, and democratic accountability to people and community. The defining features of such a money system will be nearly the mirror opposite of the defining features of the existing money system. [See Money System Thought Experiment]

The following are recommended actions.

  • Create a Diverse and Decentralized System of Accountable Financial Institutions Rooted in Communities
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  • Federalize the Federal Reserve
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  • Utilize the Federal Government's Money Creation Powers
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  • Regulate the Money System as a Public Utility
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Wall Street market fundamentalists defend financial speculation as a beneficial instrument for managing risk and increasing market liquidity. Living Earth economies rely on cooperative or government managed insurance pools to manage shared risk (for example the social security program) and favor patient investment over market liquidity. Appropriate measures to dampen financial speculation include a speculation tax on financial trades and a graduated system of short-term capital gains taxation starting with a tax rate of 100 percent on profits from assets held for less than a few days.

A real wealth money system would be designed to achieve a separation and balance of supervisory and regulatory powers between a federalized Federal Reserve responsible for managing the money supply, a strengthened FDIC responsible for securing bank solvency, a consumer protection agency, and elected legislative bodies responsible for the allocation of public monies.