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Street school presentation

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Gail Bradbrook

on 24 November 2013

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Transcript of Street school presentation


Why are we all pedalling on this manic treadmill toward oblivion?!
It's not exactly making us happy....
we're all drowning in debt
we're running a dangerous
climate experiment
the rich are getting richer
How did we get here?
What is driving this?
Why can't we stop it?
Since 1979 our economy has been modelled on and dominated by
"neo-liberal economics"

Macro-economy modelled using
one household with members both working in and buying from one company.
Neo-liberal models ignores the role of banks of in money creation and debt (core features of our economy and
central to the mess we are in!)
Neo - liberal models diminish
key issues like inequality
and damage to the environment
The models did not and cannot predict the spectacular economic crashes we have seen!
Such a flawed theory should be binned!
See Steve Keen "Debunking Economics"
for more details - book or youtube
Was used to establish neo-liberal dominance and corruption / vested interests keeps it in place
Explains the force,
coercion and tactics
used to establish
neo-liberal economic systems across the globe
Tax Havens
Core feature of current system.
Organise corruption services:
-Low Tax
-Little or no regulation
-Secrecy on offer

Undermine democracy

Tax Haven scale
Tax dodging

Bribes and kickbacks
Market rigging, insider trading
Financial crisis by hiding problems
Drug and human trafficking
Dictators, criminials, mafia
Illicit political donations
Up to $32 trillion "offshore"

To the moon
and back FOUR times!
Half of world trade goes through them
Tax Havens Facilitate:
Our Captive State
4000 people in UK’s £2billion lobbying industry
$1 spent on lobbying gives $100 return
Serial offending by banks; fines (1% of their profits) are "cost of doing business"
Finance curse - opposite story is told - the capture of media, think tanks, economists

A neo-liberal economy is based on the proliferation
of Debt

We are addicted to unsustainable
lifestyles & energy, which is running out

Peak oil, peak everything
Huge dependency on cheap fossil fuels and other natural resources (water, minerals, soil).

The energy required to extract resources is increasing; cheap resources cease to be cheap.
Exponential growth
Climate change
The clearest sign of our insane system

Climate change already increasing food prices and damaging infrastructure.

Climate denial funding by vested interests

Inequality is huge, costly and feeds corruption
Divide, distract and rule
"Benefits scroungers and fraudsters"
Just 3.4% of super wealthy are entrepreneurs
Why so much Debt?

Money is created into existence as a debt when banks agree a loan.

97% of money is debt!

Debt is a tool to mitigate profit.
Debt comes with interest payments - your future labour is "owed" to someone wealthier

Debt and Distribution
Debt and Depletion

Economic growth HAS to happen to cover debt + interest
Debt allows companies to expand and forces them to shrink margins
Affects quality, harms local production, cheap transport is essential!
-is happening in water use, species extinction, polution etc



Replace capital controls, re-regulate finance
Spahn tax to reduce speculation
Smaller, local mutuals give loans.
Government creates money as a credit and through a citizens income.
Citizens debt audit: cancel toxic debt.
Modern debt jubilee: give everyone money!!
Spend money into economy in Green New Deal.
Reduce debts and resist consumerism
Move your Money (UK campaign)
Support Positive Money
Support a local currency and the credit union
Create a gift economy



Replace capital controls, re-regulate
finance, reduce speculation using Spahn tax. Smaller, local mutuals give loans. Government creates money as a credit and through a citizens income. Citizens debt audit: cancel toxic debt. Modern debt jubilee: give everyone money!! Spend money into economy in Green New Deal.
Reduce debts and resist urge to buy things you don't need! Move your Money (see campaign), support Positive Money.
Support a local currency and the credit union. Create a gift economy.



Tackle tax havens and tax dodging (unitary taxation, automatic information exchange, etc)
Limit political donations, lobbying and support transparency
Localise decision making, liquid democracy
Prosecute board members of business

Join a union or campaign, eg Tax Justice UK
Boycott tax dodging companies
Promote boycotts and share information
Civil disobedience- cleverrly organised!
What is an economy for? What are our values?
Maximising happiness and minimising harm?

An alternative economy:


Undertake a "great transition" (NEF)
Localise food production (cooperativity, permaculture)
Green taxes, regulations, tariffs to reduce pollution
Invest in energy efficiency, renewable energy
Capture carbon by working with nature
Create a law against Ecocide
Reduce your need for energy for heating and transport
Grow food, shop local; who supplies your energy?
Develop / use a local community supported agriculture, farmers market and online shop (eg Stroudco)
Increase community owned energy
Transition the local economy


Promote cooperatives and employee owned businesses
Limit pay differentials to 20:1
Introduce land value charges
Remove interest charges for loans
Join campaigns supporting equality and social justice.
Share the information from the Equality Trust.
Build inclusive communities and fight all attempts to scapegoat
Build your local community, have fun together!
Its the Economy

"Economics is the social science that analyzes the production, distribution and consumption of goods and services"

We can't leave economics to economists.
Let's bust some myths!
Markets X
Free markets X
Privatisation X
Innovation X
Efficiency X
Want X
Selfish X
if its an "natural phenomenon"
Why did Thatcher say in 1981:
"Economics are the method.
The object is to change the heart and soul" ?
"Free markets of private enterprise, coming up with innovative solutions, are the most efficient way to deliver the things we all need...
... and anyway they reflect our true nature as selfish humans ...
....and besides we've tried the alternative and sadly it didn't work."

causing climate chaos
Neo-liberal capitalism buzz words:
Economic literacy is crucial to empowerment!

A gross over simplification ignoring
"emergent properties" and dynamics
but they are very lucrative for
the rich and big companies!
Are the goals of a neo-liberal economy explicit?
Does the public agreed with them?:

(methods: interest rates, privatisation, deregulation, cuts, free trade agreements, attack unions;
fund those that agree!)
Control inflation to protect financial wealth
Restore insecurity and labour discipline
Eliminate "entitlements"
Role back government except to suport business
Cut corporate taxes, increase sales taxes (vat)
Restore domination of private business / wealthy
Foster a sense of resignation
Mixed, locally focussed economy with small private enterprises, larger cooperatives and public ownership
(where monopolies are best)
Increasing demand + decreasing supply = price hikes
"There are no such things as limits to growth, because there are no limits to the human capacity for intelligence, imagination and wonder" Ronald Regan
More equal societies focus on solutions.
John Christensen
(Tax Justice Network):
“Remember the Golden Rule: those with
the gold make the rules”

Promote economic literacy
street schools, cafe economique, reading groups

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