News from the New Economics Party

Well the election is over and we can start planning seriously for the next few years as we develop as a party. And we watch anxiously as Europe goes through so continual financial crises.

We have had our first skype call among those who were involved from the start and now have to plan to build our membership to 500 so we can register. We are also working on a form to register properly for the party and where people can donate money. And our IT team is connecting us to Facebook and Twitter and everything. Everyone who joins the website is sent an email and we are learning about the range of people that this attracts - ex Greens, climate change activists, peak oil transitioners, tweeters, bloggers, Max Keiser fans, students of human evolution and consciousness, Georgists, monetary reformers, thinkers, businesspeople who care for the earth. We have an enthusiastic fan from Greece and ongoing encouragement from some in USA.

Frank de Jong, the leader of the Greens in Ontario for 16 years, and now president of Earthsharing Canada has made contact and sent us his calculations on how they could raise $210 billion in resource rentals from oil, land value, Tobin Tax, other resource rents, infrastructure access and Pigouvian taxes to equal the revenue they currently raise from income tax, corporate tax, GST and other sources.. (Yes there was an economist called Pigou) It makes sense not to tax work. Ridiculous. But those who take from the commonwealth must contribute to the common good in equal measure. And we would add excise taxes from tobacco and alcohol as before and have a tariff for climate change too.

Frank's calculations raise rent from oil, tar sands, natural gas, land, trees, fish, minerals, EM spectrum, internet, stock markets, patents, quotas, licences, and the Pigouvian taxes include roads, parking, docks, towers, wires, landfills and water.

Today I was reading Sacred Economics by Charles Eisenstein, a brilliant 2011 book available from Living Economies. He sees resource taxes as internalising the true cost of production so that the public doesn't pay the cost while the business reaps the profits. "I use the water, irrigate my dairy farm, keep the income and the public pays the cost of depleted aquifers and polluted rivers" would be our equivalent. He says as long as we think of ourselves as separate from others and from  Earth we will have this view that I keep the income and someone else pays. "But from the perspective of the connected self, connected to other people and to the earth, your well-being is inseparable from my own because you and I are not fundamentally separate". His online course at http://evolverintensives.com/upcoming/ce-sacred-economics.html starts tomorrow!

Laurence is working on the Living Economies sector (April 12-13) of the Australasian Permaculture Convergence being held in Turangi next year (April 11-15) and the New Economics Party will be among those participating. He is also working to find a place where our party members can all stay together, and have our session on Friday 15 April.

Asset Sales or River Sales?

Asset sales are really river sales

25 November 2011

If asset sales go ahead then we will lose control over our big rivers, according to Laurence Boomert, Wellington Central candidate for the New Economics Party.

“Not only is it bordering on treason to sell our precious assets, but there are rivers like the Waikato and the Waitaki involved too.

“There is a link between asset sales of our major generation companies and the risk of associated loss of public control of our rivers with that transaction. These are our sacred rivers, our taonga and are the source of much life. They are not a commodity to be bought and sold.”
“These publicly-owned energy companies have a very big influence on our hydro river catchments. On the Waitaki River, for example, Mighty River Power has legal claim over waters, they own big tracts of land, can have interests in irrigation supply networks and can secure "requiring authority" to purchase land that they need for their schemes.”  Selling 49% of Meridian means selling 49% of the Waitaki River. We don’t want the water to be sold.

“We don't think that the majority of New Zealanders have made these crucial connections and therefore risk making under-informed decisions on Saturday’s election.”

For further comment phone Laurence Boomert 027 258 8807

Financial Transaction tax needed to stop obscene bank profits

Financial Transaction tax needed to stop obscene bank profits

 24 November 2011

“The ridiculously high profits announced by ANZ shows we are overdue in imposing a financial transaction tax”, according to Laurence Boomert, New Economics Party candidate for Wellington Central.

ANZ announced record profits recently despite difficult economic conditions.

“Every bank these days deals in derivatives and these trades are high volume and fast turnover. A small financial transaction tax should be imposed on every transaction,” said Boomert.

“ANZ’s website shows exotic financial instruments like spot minors and forward majors but few people understands their complications”, said Boomert.  “Banks are gamblers these days not innocent intermediaries between lender and borrower, especially since the removal of the firewalls that protected the savings and loans sides of their business from their rampant speculations.”

The Pacific Financial Derivatives page on Facebook tells you that retail Forex accounts can now be opened with a large or small deposit and leverage of 1 to 100 is allowed in most cases. “If this isn’t gambling then I don’t know what is”, said Boomert.

“The problem is that as banks indulge in reckless speculation and suck out their undeserved profits the real economy of production and labour is endangered”

For further comment phone Laurence Boomert 027 258 8807 E: laurenceboomert@xtra.co.nz

 

Growing Inequality Caused by the Money System

Media Statement 23 November 2011

Growing Inequality Due to Money System

To narrow the gap between rich and poor we need to change the money system, according to the New Economics Party candidate for Wellington Central.

"If children are going hungry and poverty is increasing then it is time to consider that there might be something structurally wrong. There it is – it’s the way we create money.  It is created every time a bank makes a loan and they create the principle but not the interest. There isn't enough money in the system for everyone to pay off their debts at the same time."

"Each round someone loses. The ones that miss out have to go to the bank for another loan. There are always winners and losers. We won't close the gap until we change the money system."

"The system is dog eat dog and the poor end up net borrowers while the rich are net lenders," he said.

For further comment phone Laurence Boomert 027 258 8807

 

Money system transfers wealth from poor to rich

Here is a letter Laurence sent to the Dominion Post on 18 Nov, 2011

Dear Sir,

Congratulations on your initiative to research the gap between rich and poor in New Zealand. The fact that the richest 5% own more than double the bottom 50% comes as no surprise because we have a money system which systematically transfers wealth from the poor (who are net borrowers) to the rich (who are net lenders).

When credit is created by banks as interest-bearing debt one of the many horrible consequences is that the gap widens. The principle is created but the interest isn’t. So there is never enough money in the system at one time for everyone to pay off their debts, and the losers must borrow again. It’s like a game of musical chairs ­– with each new round there is a loser. And overall debt continually increases.

Equality will never arrive in the Age of Usury. Our party advocates benign multiple currencies, a means of exchange created interest-free as a public utility.

Laurence Boomert
Candidate for Wellington Central
New Economics Party
http://neweconomics.net.nz

Europeans should consult permaculturists not bankers

Every educated and concerned individual on the planet appears to be puzzling over the web of debt problem in Europe.  Many instinctively know that because of our interconectedness the austerity package in Greece and the riots in Rome will be coming to a city near them soon unless this dilemma is solved. The grotesque web of debt graphic published on the BBC News website at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-15748696 is authoritative and clear. It shows that Greece owes to France, US, UK, Germany, Portugal and Italy and does this for each country.

We first need to understand that bailout packages aren’t bailouts really  – they are just further loans. But anyone will know you can’t solve debt with more debt.  Sooner or later the crisis is going to come back and each round it gets worse. And it is rather like the poor having to borrow from loan sharks to pay their interest on their complicated hire-purchase obligations – the further they get into debt the more interest they pay.

How come so many owe so much to so many? Companies, governments and individuals have been borrowing across borders for years. Why couldn’t they rely on their own country instead?  Are there no boundaries between countries any more? Is capital to roam free across the globe in search of the best returns? Oh yes, in the current system it is. Borders mean little these days when it comes to capital flow.

So what to do? Put bankers and economists in to run Italy and Greece?

Einstein said you won’t solve the problem with the same thinking that created it. I have just read an article by a permaculture teacher on energy flows between living organisms. Instead of inviting bankers to their conference to solve the Eurozone debt dilemma, European leaders should have invited permaculturists. They would have learnt that all living systems have semi-permeable borders to control the material and energy flowing in and out. If too much energy (money) flows in the system expands and implodes. If too much energy flows out the system winds down and collapses. This is the principle of reciprocity.

There are other principles but the only one I will touch on here is the idea of holarchies. This, in contrast to hierarchies, means that in Nature there are wholes within wholes within wholes. Each whole-part has its integrity and each is constantly in negotiation with other whole-parts in a dynamic dance to maintain system balance. You can read more about holarchies at http://www.jaredbhobbs.com/holarchy-the-nested-hierarchy-of-holons/  and about the principles of living systems  at http://www.lindaboothsweeney.net/thinking/principles

We will put aside the issue of the gigantic derivatives market for the moment.  Suffice to say Merkel and Sarkosy in their proposal for a financial transaction tax are on the right path.

Now if we apply the holarchical organisational structure to currencies, we need currencies for small areas, currencies for larger areas and currencies for the whole globe. In an ideal system (and private corporations are still I am afraid still in charge of the issuing and controlling a country’s money supply), to ensure there is always the right amount of money the public body issuing each currency will be in a constant state of negotiation with the others. It brings complexity and resilience to a system.

So all this talk of “leaving the Euro” or “joining the Euro” might have to be replaced by other thinking. If we were to imitate Nature we would have a holarchical system. We would have currencies within currencies within currencies. So the Euro would co-exist with the drachma and the mark and the franc. Now, that will take some thinking out, but it is Nature’s model and we are part of Nature aren’t we?

There are many other critical questions like the ridiculous and unfair system where the global currency is effectively still the US dollar and the as yet unquestioned usurious money creation system that allowed all this compounding interest to take place. But let’s leave that for another time.  Just get in the permaculturists!