VIDEO: Watch “Is Equity the Superior Growth Model?”

On April 22, a standing-room-only crowd packed the auditorium at the DC offices of Center for American Progress to discuss how equity can drive national economic growth.

Read “Prosperity 2050: Is Equity the Superior Growth Model?”, the paper PolicyLink and CAP released at the event, here.

Didn’t get to make it to the event? You can watch it below!

One Response to “VIDEO: Watch “Is Equity the Superior Growth Model?””

  1. avatar

    It seems that reforming the monetary system would be more effective than trying to balance inequities via tax code. The flaw in our current system comes down the the usury that arises from the assumption of a positive "time value of money". If currency depreciated by something like 2% and the local governments spent money into building infrastructure (bond issues would be paid for by newly issued currency rather than borrowing the national currency at interest) then you would have a more effective 'flat tax' that no one or entity could circumvent. (an example of a currency with a small holding fee is the Chiemgauer in Austria: http://www.ijccr.net/IJCCR/2009_%2813%29_files/IJ

    The divide between the rich and poor widens because the escalating interest flows reallocate capital from those who pay more interest than they receive to those who receive more interest than they pay. This interest income is made possible because currency is designed to be hoard able. Placing a holding fee on currencies (demurrage fee) increases the velocity of currency and frees material goods, which are subject to natural cyclic processes of renewal and decay, from their linkage with money that only grows, exponentially, over time. To store demurrage currency and protect it from depreciation, the money can be invested into businesses that need capital, and the borrower will pay the depreciation while they are using the money. This encourages actual wealth building rather than the phantom wealth of the Wall Street bubbles created in our current interest bearing growth based economy. Demurrage money would be spent into the economy by the government for the infrastructure and services needed (e.g. in Worgl during the depression years)

    Silvio Gesell believed currency has a privileged position relative to labor and real assets because money does not depreciate in the same way that other consumables do, which is at the root of the usury problems. Allowing dollars to become hoard-able and thus non-neutral instrument of exchange creates more demand for the currency than for the human infrastructure it's meant to facilitate our creation of. Mr. Gesell proposed a “free” currency (free from its privileged bias in the market) that ‘depreciates’ in value in the same way that real assets do, which has been shown to encourage investment in human infrastructure over hoarding of currency.

    For markets to work the social infrastructure must be available for people to create and share their goods & services (roads, government, education, security etc…). There was a significant shift in the social order when society changed from individuals making products to the mass production of the products we are now dependent on. It's no longer possible for a single person to make most of the things required to survive in an urban environment. Economists have been clear about the value of this 'specialization of skills & knowledge' on the increased wealth in our economy. But I don't believe a fair bargain been made for all people who forfeit their self sufficiency to live in this interdependent culture. The first issue that should be addressed is the structure of the monetary system, and we may find that taxation is not even necessary if we are able to truly democratize the credit commons within the monetary system.

    A link to Silvio Gesell's writing: http://www.geokey.de/literatur/doc/neo.pdf

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