Resource list – books, DVDs, website etc

This was prepared for our Unconference held in May 2015

Disclaimer: This is just a selection of books, DVDs and websites. No claim is made for its comprehensiveness. Please send suggestions to info@neweconomics.net.nz

Books on Sustainability and Climate Change
Paul Gilding The Great Disruption
James Hansen Storms of My Grandchildren
Tim Flannery The Weather Makers
Clive Hamilton Requiem for a Species
Naomi Klein This Changes Everything

General
(Ed) FEASTA (New Zealand version) Fleeing Vesuvius
Herman Daly and John Cobb For the Common Good Redirecting the economy towards community, the environment and a sustainable future. London: Green Print.

David Korten (Co founder of the Yes Magazine, Seattle)
Agenda for a New Economy
The Great Turning
When Corporations Rule the World
The Post Corporate World

Paul Hawken Blessed Unrest
E F Schumacher Small is Beautiful.
Vandava Shiva Earth Democracy

Hazel Henderson
Beyond Globalization
The Politics of the Solar Age Alternatives to Economics
Paradigms in Progress (and many others)

Books on Peak Oil
Jeff Rubin Why your World is About to get a Whole lot Smaller.
Richard Heinberg
Peak Everything
The End of Growth
Snake Oil

Books on General Economics, Inequality and on Money Trading

Steve Keen Debunking Economics

Michael Lewis. Former trader, books include:
Liar’s Poker
Flash Boys

Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett
Why Equality is Better for Everyone

Thomas Piketty
Capital in the 21st Century

Charles R Morris
The Two Trillion Dollar Meltdown Easy Money, High Rollers and the Great Credit Crash

David Hackett Fischer
The Great Wave Price Revolutions and the Rhythm of History

Books on Money
John Kenneth Galbraith
Money Whence it came, Where it went

David Graeber Debt the First 500 Years

Silvio Gesell
The Natural Economic Order (online in English now)

Major C H Douglas
Social Credit 1924 and many others see Wikipedia

Michael Rowbotham
The Grip of Death a Study of Modern Money, Debt Slavery and Destructive Economics.

Deirdre Kent
Healthy Money Healthy Planet –Developing Sustainability through New Money Systems 2005.

Bernard Lietaer: The Future of Money, Money and Sustainability – the Missing Link (with 3 others),
People Money (with Margrit Kennedy)
New Money for a New World (with Stephen Belgin)
Rethinking Money (with Jacqui Dunne)
Creating Wealth (with Gwendolyn Hallsmith)

Margrit Kennedy
Interest and Inflation Proof Money
Occupy Money

Geoff Davies. Economia (Australia)

Thomas H Greco
New Money for Healthy Communities
The End of Money and the Future of Civilization

Richard Douthwaite
(He founded FEASTA in Ireland)
The Growth Illusion
Short Circuit
The Ecology of Money

John Rogers
Local Money (UK)

Ellen Brown
The Web of Debt
The Public Banking Solution

Books on the Commons and on Tax
Andro Linklater
Owning the Earth The Transforming History of Land Ownership

Peter Barnes
Who Owns the Sky?
Capitalism 3.0

Henry George
Progress and Poverty
The Land Question
The Conditions of Labour
The Science of Political Economy pbl Robert Schalkenbach Foundation

Robert V Andelson (Ed)
Land Value Taxation Around the World pbl Robert Schalkenbach Foundation

Fred Harrison
Boom Bust House Prices, Banking and the Depression of 2010
The Traumatised Society
(With Mason Gaffney): The Corruption of Economics. (Critical concept in this book. V important)

Martin Adams
Land A New Paradigm for a Thriving World 2015

Prof. Mason Gaffney
The Mason Gaffney Reader Essays on Solving the Unsolvable

Alanna Hartzok The Earth Belongs to Everyone

New Zealand books are rare but two were written by Rolland O’Regan – Rating in New Zealand and Te Ara Tika

Gareth Morgan and Susan Guthrie The Big Kahuna: Tax Welfare and Dignity

Optimistic Books and Books on new ways of working

Rachel Botsman and Roo Rogers
What’s Mine is Yours The Rise of Collaborative Consumption

John Greer The Ecotechnic Future

Michael Lewis and Pat Conaty
The Resilience Imperative Cooperative Transition to a Steady State Economy.

Charles Eisenstein
Sacred Economics
The Ascent of Humanity

Bruce Lipton
The Biology of Belief
(and with Steve Bhaerman )Spontaneous Evolution Our Positive Future and a Way to get there from here

Newsletters to subscribe to
James Robertson. He is a founder of the New Economics Foundation of UK and has been writing on green economics for decades. His website has a list of the books he has written, the submissions he has made, the newsletters he writes. Topic on money, tax, future work, the dependency culture and many others. www.jamesrobertson.com

Websites
Global finance: www.theautomaticearth.com, www.zerohedge.com, bloomberg.com, resilience, theconversation.com.au, smh.com.au, TED talks
Money: http://chrismartenson.com has comprehensive online teaching.
Zeitgeist the movie http://www.zeitgeistmovie.com/
Current global situation: http://theautomaticearth.com
Commons: http://p2pfoundation.net/

Basic Income NZ http://basicincome.org.nz/

DVDs
Real Estate for Ransom. Made in Melbourne by Karl Fitzgerald of Prosper Australia

Money and Life Features many of above authors plus Vicki Robin, Edgar Cahn, Elizabet Sahtouris, Jean Houston, William Greider

Social media
Twitter: (Use tweetdeck where you can have columns).
Follow Deirdre Kent, Phil Stevens, Aaron McLean, Carrie Stoddart

Short History of the New Economics Party

History of the New Economics Party Oct 2011- May 2015

Sept 2011 Deirdre Kent rang Laurence Boomert and suggested a new party because an election was coming up. Deirdre wrote the website, Laurence stood for Wellington Central, logo done by AJ Hunter, constitution written by Natalie Hormann approved by Electoral Commission. Amanda Vickers, Rex Verity, Phil Stevens all involved. Deck Hazen, Deirdre and Laurence made financial contributions. Deck treasurer.

14 April 2012. The First meeting of the New Economics Party, Turangi School, held during the morning of 14/4/2012 during the Australasian Permaculture Convergence

27 attended with Phil Stevens as Interim Chair. Topics discussed included setting up a logo committee led by Miles Thompson (this was eventually dropped as there were more pressing things to do), going through the process of registering as a political party, reviewing the draft constitution. Got more on the mailing list. Set up working group on constitution, Phil Stevens on brochure.

2 June, 2012 Meeting at Otaki
Present: Joy Svendsen, Laurence Boomert, Alex Greig, Finlay Thompson, Deirdre Kent, Rex Verity, Phil Stevens, Niko Leyden, Sue Hamill, Gary Williams (chair) Conor Coady, Malcolm Murchie, Don Richards, Russell Bishop (minutes)

5 August, 2012 First meeting at 215 Rangiuru Road, Otaki. Photo taken of participants with billboard in background. Present: Amanda Vickers, Andrew Rundle-Keswick, Gary Williams, Sue Hamill, Deirdre Kent, Inka Humphries-Gliesche, Don Richards, Alys Delft, Ian Todd, Paul Webster, Conor Coady. Ambitious goals set re timetable.

Our vision was to have a New Zealand society where:

1. We had full employment in quality, fulfilling work for those wanting work.
2. We each had sufficient as our natural right. (Sufficiency of income, access to resources, land, housing, food, clean water)
3. New Zealanders were happy and healthy.
4. There was a ‘reverence’ for nature and a recognition that the economy was a subset of society which was a subset of the environment.
5. Both the national and local economy would be resilient to any threat.
6. There would be vibrant and functioning communities, sufficiently resilient to withstand the challenges of declining supplies of fossil fuels, and collapse of economies in the rest of the world.
7. There would be full human rights and responsibilities starting with security, safety, rights of free speech etc.
8. Our economy would operate like a healthy living organism, a well functioning whole, like a social ecosystem. The system works as a well functioning whole.
9. A healthy participatory democracy.

General election expenses of $3493.94 submitted. Donors: Laurence, Deck Hazen, Deirdre

7 Sept 2012. Prof Steve Keen visits main centres and many meet him.

Kiwibank account opened by Deck Hazen.
First membership was listed, including Russel Bishop, Finlay Thompson, Anna Sutherland, Mark Derby, Neil Thomas, Michael Brierton, Alys Delft, Katherine O’Brien, Don Richards

Meeting 28 October, 2012 at Otaki
9 attended including Morgan Le Quesne with three online. TPPA discussion leading to three working on topic – Viola Palmer, Ian Todd and Sue Hamill. Amanda leading the revision of pamphlet with Deirdre and Phil.

Dec 16, 2012 Meeting
Chicago Plan Revisited paper by Michael Kumhof and Jaromir Benes published. Talk of the Open Bank Resolution provision at the Reserve Bank of New Zealand leads to decision to launch petition asking for a Parliamentary Enquiry into the best methods of ensuring banks are stable. Talk of Auckland currency and a Christchurch currency.
Deirdre reported a disappointing conversation with Bernard Lietaer who didn’t see the land issue as relevant.
At this stage we were lucky to have Morgan Le Quesne offer to help with administration in exchange for nominal wages. Deirdre put in $2000 so we could pay her for some of her work. She took over as treasurer mid 2013 when Deck resigned.

April 2013? Meeting at the home of Alex Greig in Wellington. Designer Niko Leyden proposed a new name and a new logo – The Local Economics Party, with reasons.

6 August 2013 paid up membership was 33

Topics discussed were website, newsletter, the political situation, the economy, a suggested federation of microparties, using Yammer as a discussion platform, making new people administrators for Facebook group, Civi membership list, use of loomio, meeting of Phil and Deirdre with Hone Harawira’s right hand woman, petition to Parliament asking for Parliamentary Enquiry on making banks stable, submission made to Select Committee on Standing Orders re secrecy of Select Committee meetings.

11 August 2013
Linnea Lindstroem and Christian Williams had organised a Wellington meeting with about 15 present – mostly young people. Deirdre spoke.

Christchurch Rex organised two meetings there with Deirdre over the years. Good discussion.

22 Feb 2014 Deirdre and Amanda attended a small meeting of Pirate Party in Otaki where they asked us to explain our policy to them. Agreement that we should each join each other’s party, share research, share campaign volunteers, set up an interparty working group and have an interparty loomio group to work on agreed policy. Possible participants to include were the Pirate Party, the New Economics Party, the Awareness Party Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party, Democrats for Social Credit, Positive Money, Focus NZ, Thrive NZ

July 2014 Deirdre was invited to talk on land and money at the Council of Georgist Organisations conference in California. The talk is on slideshare.com. She made good contacts.

Those who have been involved
Those who have been on our steering committee from the start include
Laurence Boomert, Natalie Hormann, Deck Hazen, Neil Thomas, Niko Leyden, Amanda Vickers, Jorn Bettin, Phil Linklater, Christian Williams, Andrew Martin, Aaron McLean, Carol Winstanley, Sue Hamill, Morgan Le Quesne, Carrie Stoddart, Miles Thompson. Present throughout have been Phil Stevens, Rex Verity and Deirdre Kent.

Throughout the whole time Phil Stevens has kept our website operating, after original help from Miriam Richardson. Andrew Rundle and Miles Thompson have helped with web work as needed.

Throughout 2013 till 2015 there were no physical meetings. The Steering Committee met online.

Website
Set up as wordpress, we have kept this form throughout. Deirdre has written almost all of it, but now others are contributing blog posts. E.g Joel Benjamin a New Zealander who lives in London. We are conscious it needs a great deal of work and improvement. It seems we come up on the front page of searches quite often.
At one stage Phil regretfully had to shut down the facility to discuss blog posts on the site, due to hacking.

Mailing list management
Phil set up. CiviCRM to manage our mailouts and Morgan and Deirdre have been learning to use it. It is more sophisticated than Mailchimp and does more, so there is more to learn.

Social Networking
Jorn set up a Facebook page. Deirdre posts new blogs there and any news. It has been a major source of recruiting people to our mailing list and of debate.

Twitter. We found both Carrie and Aaron this way and many others. We do not have a New Economics Party twitter handle yet.
Linkedin. We are not on as the New Economics Party here but again have met people interested in our policies this way.
Google Plus. Same.

Policy discussion online tools
We tried for a while to use Yammer but eventually used loomio and will continue to use loomio as it is open source. More work required on getting participation and results.

Elections
Apart from when Laurence stood on a monetary reform policy, we have not stood. We have considered local government elections more relevant. We are aware our policies are not yet developed enough to stand at national level nor is our organisation yet robust enough.

A petition to government
When the provisions for Open Bank Resolution in the case of bank distress was set in place by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, we were sufficiently alarmed to set up a petition, cooperating with other political parties in the process e.g. Democrats for Social Credit and Positive Money. We learnt that our deposits belonged to the banks legally and that as unsecured creditors we are last in line to have our deposits honoured. The public awareness of ‘bail-in’ is still very low.

We sent in our petition asking for a Parliamentary Enquiry into the best ways of making banks stable signed by 877 people but were not allowed to be present at the Select Committee when it was looking at it.

That precipitated a late submission to the Select Committee Reviewing Standing Orders asking for more openness at Select Committees. They took no action, despite the fact that Phil and Deirdre were politely received by the Speaker’s committee. They simply didn’t want the public present when they were deliberating!

Media
We have had very little media coverage. Statements were put out regularly for a while, but very few over the past two years. They are not all on the website either.

Communication with economists
Deirdre has had meetings with Len Bayliss, Arthur Grimes (on land tax), Ganesh Nana.
Some contact with others.

Submissions to various councils
We have made major submissions to both the Christchurch City Council on their Long Term Plan and to the Local Government Commission hearing feedback on the proposal to amalgamate Wellington Councils. Rex Verity appeared in support at Christchurch and Deirdre at the Local Government Commission hearing in Upper Hutt.

International contact
Good contact with Prof Steve Keen, the Georgist movement, the monetary reform movement, the complementary currencies movement and permaculture movement. We are delighted that Nicole Foss of Canada, formerly of oildrum.com now of theautomaticearth.com, has moved to Wellington and has joined us to help.

Cooperation with other microparties and with other groups
We have communicated and cooperated with the following: The Awareness Party, Thrive NZ, Focus NZ, Democrats for Social Credit, Mana Party, ALCP Party, the Pirate Party, Internet Party (after the election),Positive Money and Resource Rentals for Revenue. Amanda and Deirdre met three from the Pirate Party in Otaki in 2014 and discussed our policy. Danyl Strype keen on cooperation, joining each other to boost membership, pooling resources. We continue our ongoing good relationship with Living Economies Educational Trust.

Targets
Not explored yet include Grey Power meetings as they are interested in outcomes for their children and grandchildren. Also at university there were Young Labour, Young Nats and also to some degree ACT, people who were seeking policies for the future.

Our current needs
Improving our website, expanding our social media presence, managing the membership list is ongoing work, more people to share more jobs, setting up branches in Christchurch and Auckland. Relieving Phil of some work. Taking notes at meetings. The list goes on. More donations needed.

Deirdre Kent 26 May, 2015

Why we do what we do and what we believe

Why we do what we do in the New Economics Party

We believe that a political economy should be like a living organism and obey the laws of Nature. It should have both protection mechanisms to protect us from harm and growth opportunities to allow everyone to develop and specialise. In a healthy organism there are jobs for every cell and organ. It should have a thriving economy fuelled by the energy of money yet constrained by the limits of Nature. We believe the human species is part of Nature not there to dominate it. The riches of Nature and our heritage must be fairly shared and wisely managed.

Cooperation for common good
We believe in the collective power of good people to work for our common purpose and we refuse to say, “Change isn’t possible”. We know in our bones that the design of an economy is the critical factor needed to sustain and nourish life on this beautiful planet and that that like the 50 trillion cells in our bodies, seven billion people can actually work cooperatively without poverty, climate crises or war. We must do it or else perish as a species. Failure is not an option.

We are audacious enough to believe that people of every colour and creed can live together in peace with their basic needs met. With our collective refugee population now amounting to millions, it is time to address the causes of the injustices causing war, for without justice there will be no peace. We are adamant that every person has the right to the basics of life – a safe warm home, nourishing food, education health care and a sense of belonging.

We are one with our habitat
We believe that a political economy designed along the laws of Nature doesn’t result in the belching of greenhouse gases into a warming planet. We are impatient to protect our grandchildren from ever worsening storms, droughts and food shortages. After the wakeup calls of climate change and gross inequality, there is no time to waste trying to dominate and subdue Nature. Our country and indeed the world must be subservient to Nature and listen to her wisdom. Our laws and our human created currencies and structures must be in line with Nature’s laws. Only then can we live in harmony, solve climate change and live happily with our families free from war and Nature’s ravages. Nature bats first and last.

Biomimcry
We believe it is imperative to design a political economy that is both elegant and simple. Add-on policies like Working for Families or Accommodation Supplements are simply signs that the basic design is poor. We want a simple tax system, not one full of ways to avoid tax and only serving to employ bureaucrats and accountants. We won’t tolerate a benefit system that invites dishonesty and penalises thrift and cooperation.

Honouring the Treaty
We recognise that Te Tiriti o Waitangi is a living treaty that must constantly be honoured. We understand the pain of colonisation of the Maori people by the British and will work cooperatively with Maori at each hapu and iwi level to work out policies in line with our principles. We acknowledge the injustice of the forced change to privately owned land that was brought by colonisers. We acknowledge the pain of a new money system on Maori and the need to pay tax in that currency.

We acknowledge the catch 22 demands of collective land ownership and the demands of the banking system for collateral for loans that has locked Maori outside the mainstream economy, generating an inability to finance productive investment in Maori enterprise for the last 175 years and that still ongoing. We understand the ongoing dispute between local government and Maori about unpaid rates originates from this demand.

We acknowledge the contribution Maori culture has made to the wider New Zealand culture, and the contribution it may yet make as pakeha are ready to receive - in particular the understanding of reciprocity in economic relations (sometimes known as utu) that underpins sustainable economy and sustainability per se.

We acknowledge the destructiveness of forced aggregation of Maori interests to iwi level that has resulted in the corporatization of ownership of Maori resources and consequent alienation of the bulk of the Maori population from those resources.

Energy transfer
The lifeblood of an economy is its flow of money. We believe we must take full control of our money systems – that is the sovereign right of any country. No longer will we allow commercial banks to create and control our money supply and gamble with our deposits, while they are poised to leave the innocent depositors to pick up the mess if they fail. We reserve the right to design the currencies we need.

Diversity, recycling
Everything manufactured is sourced as close as possible to where it is needed, and recycled for a no-waste economy. In a natural economy nobody will go hungry or homeless. Every individual is of worth and has the right to meaningful work. Nobody will be neglected, living in cars or crowded homes while others amass wealth they do not need. That is not Nature’s way.

Redistribution
Without revenue neither central nor local government can build infrastructure, schools and hospitals. The revenue we aim should tax the exclusive use of the commons (in its wider sense). Everyone should have the inalienable right to a share of the common wealth so the rents from the commons are be shared by distributing Citizens Dividends. Nobody should own the earth, water or fisheries or anything left to us by our ancestors.

Governance
A living system is a self-organising organism with a multitude of feedback and feed-forward mechanisms in a state of tension and negotiation till equilibrium is established. So we believe that decisions must not all be made centrally but all over the country. Local and national government must constantly be negotiating. We want strong communities with the inalienable right to elect their own decision makers; the fundamental unit of government must be a powerful Community Board.

Cities
We won’t tolerate sprawling cities with an elite landed class occupying desirable land near good schools and regular transport while those on the outskirts must wake early, leave their children and catch two buses to unsatisfying low paid jobs. For parents of young children two hours commuting is not conducive to anyone’s wellbeing. We can do better. We want compact walkable cities with efficient rapid transit without the use of fossil fuels. We understand that economic signals like rating systems and tax systems are driving our irrational behaviour. That is no way to plan a city.

We want local and national governments to have sufficient reliable income to pay for rapid transit, education and healthcare – revenue derived from charging a full rent on the exclusive use of the commons in its wider sense. Taxing the good things is not an option – it’s illogical to tax work, sales or enterprise. We will not watch on while governments struggle for revenue, people work long hours while property owners grow rich on the rising price of land.

Managing borders
We believe firmly in our national sovereignty. Although we know how to control our borders when it comes to pests and threats to our agriculture we don’t yet know how to control our borders when it comes to money. While hot money sloshes round the globe in search of higher returns and international trade agreements are written largely by the corporations that rule the world, we will not rest. We demand our country’s freedom to make laws without fear of being sued by a foreign corporation in a secret offshore tribunal.

New Zealand’s opportunity
We believe New Zealand with its small educated population and rich resources has an obligation to be a model of how to run a vibrant and exciting post fossil fuel economy where entrepreneurs can truly thrive and nobody is left uneducated or in poverty.

http://neweconomics.net.nz

Financial analyst and former oildrum editor joins New Economics Party as spokesperson

Top Financial Analyst to join New Economics Party

Friday, 1 August 14

The New Economics Party has just added top financial analyst Nicole Foss to its group as spokesperson on the global economy.

“We are delighted to welcome Nicole, Senior Editor of The Automatic Earth website to our team” said party co-leader Deirdre Kent. “Nicole, a Canadian has recently arrived to live in Motueka and is in demand as an international speaker on finance, energy and resilience,” she said.

Nicole is former Editor of The Oil Drum Canada (canada.theoildrum.com). She used to be a Research Fellow at the Oxford Institute for energy Studies in the UK and used to run the Agri-Energy Producers' Association of Ontario in Canada. Her formal background is in science and law.

Nicole says she aligns with the New Economics Party idea that the global financial crisis is far from over. “The recent credit bubble was the biggest ponzi scheme the world has ever experienced and it’s not yet unwound.” The bailouts now add up to at least $4.6 trillion or $4,600,000,000,000. Foss says the bubble is leading us into a very long and painful depression.

The New Economics Party http://neweconomics.net.nz is not contesting this election.

For further comment phone Deirdre Kent 06 364 7779 or 021 728 852 or Nicole Foss 022 312 5120

Vision and core policy discussion at an Otaki Meeting

Today we had 16 attending a meeting in Otaki. Although we only had only an afternoon to get through a lot, we agreed on at least the following core points: Our vision is for a New Zealand.. 1. Where we have full employment in quality fulfilling work for those wanting it. 2. Where sufficiency is a natural right. 3. Where New Zealanders are happy. 4. Where there is a 'reverence' for nature 5. Where the national and local economies are resilient in the face of shocks or threats. 6. Where there are vibrant and functioning local communities. 7. Where full human rights and responsibilities are affirmed and supported. 8. Where our economy is operating as a healthy living organism, like a social ecosystem. Our core policy ideals  1. New Zealand has the right to control the issue of its sovereign currrency. 2. We will reform the banking system including reregulation. 3. We will remove the imperative for growth. 4. We will seek radical monetary reform, including enabling multiple currencies. 5. We will stop land speculation. 6. We will discourage damaging speculative activity in currencies. 7. We support apprenticeships. 8. We will introduce a form of Universal Basic Income (UBI). 9. We will repatriate strategic assets. 10. We will enable local banks, local currencies and local redevelopment. 11. We will build stronger local economies and strengthen local community. Three of us had been to the Values Party 40th reunion the previous day and we reported on the exciting day we had. We looked back, evaluated progress over 40 years and identified where we hadn't succeeded. It had been agreed that inequality had widened and the environment had deteriorated over that time, despite all our rhetoric and our work. The reunion proposed a thinktank to challenge and improve Green policy. In fact the reunion was part of the Green Party conference and a book Beyond Today, a Values Story had been launched to link Greens with their origin. So just as the Values Party did forty years ago, we had a delightful conversation about our long term and short term strategies and tactics. We had two columns, one for blue sky scenario and one for a realistic scenario. We are aiming to stand candiates for the local body election next year and for the next general election.      

A Christchurch currency? An Auckland currency?

We have always had a policy of local authority issued currencies and whenever we have put out media statements they seem to have been picked up by at least some media.

The idea of a currency issued by a local authority for me is so exciting I can barely contain myself when talking about it. We have been working for some years with LETS systems and Timebanking and have in some cases been talking about a local currency sold into existence, modeling on Wara in Germany, Worgl in Austria in 1932-3 or the various German versions of this led by the Chiemgauer currency. Each has had a negative interest rate so there is an incentive to get rid of it.

I have recently re-read Silvio Gesell's book The Natural Economic Order, or at least parts of it. Someone gave it to me when I was on a speaking tour of Australia a few years ago.  The book is online in English nowadays, which is great, because Gesell is a brilliant thinker and many have predicted he will have a huge influence in years to come. Gesell argues that in order to put money on the same basis as goods, it has to decay, rot, go out of date or rust at the same rate as goods. Then holders of money will no longer have an inordinate amount of power and withhold money when it suits them, while holders of goods are stuck with rusting iron, out of date newspapers, or rotting fruit.

So designing a currency with a negative interest rate will create money which a causes humans to act in entirely different ways. It turns money on its head. People will need to spend it and paradoxically, according to Bernard Lietaer, the author of many books on money, they tend to spend it on long term investments. Weird eh? But true. In the years between 1040 and 1280 Europe had such local currencies, (acting alongside a long distance currency for trading other goods). What happened was that they built cathedrals which turned out to be an investment in tourism for centuries to come.

The idea of a local authority issued currency isn't new. The Mayor of Hamilton tried to introduce Rates Vouchers in the late seventies, but was thwarted. Nowadays if we issued such a currency we would have to decide whether it would be spent into existence, whether it could be bought with national dollars (monetary dialysis) or lent into existence from a council associated bank. Or could it be issued with a certain expiry date? Or a combination of all these? How in each case would inflation be managed? What would people spend their local dollars on if there was a penalty for hoarding it? Imagine you had sold your mother's house, lived outside the area, but had to spend $200,000 in the area because it was in local dollars. Whew. That is an exercise for you.

So I will be taking a workshop on this topic at the upcoming Australasian Permaculture Convergence in Turangi and I have just uploaded a short video describing the issues we need to face. http://vimeo.com/39162430. Hope this works!

Amazing people join this website

Today I have been making a list of those who are registered on our site. They are awesome people.

We have people over a wide age range from 75 down to late teenagers. Three people said they trawled the internet trying to find a political party which seemed to address the issues they were worried about and had solutions they thought would work. Others hit upon it by accident.

We have many professions here from financial advisers to teachers, engineers, architects, lifestylers who practise permaculture, permaculture teachers, IT people who are fully aware of the challenges of peak oil and a wide range of other challenges. We have those who read Spontaneous Evolution by Bruce Lipton and Steve Bhaerman (remember Swami Beyondananda? He said "I have good news. There will, indeed be peace on Earth.. I sure hope we humans are around to enjoy it". We have psychologists, a theology graduate, someone who built an electric car, someone who sells raw milk and someone who has been a leader in many sustainability organisations. We have members of Transition Towns from various places and a farmer who hates land tax policy. We have many who have read widely on the topic of money systems and a lot of people who have read my book Healthy Money Healthy Planet. Some have been to Christoph Hensch's course on money in Christchurch. We have followers of Max Keiser, Bernard Lietaer, environmentalists, a pharmacist, an activist in the Occupy movement and an anthropology scholar.

Some have been involved in Green dollars in the past and many have been founding members of intentional communities and were once keen Social Credit Party, Values Party or Green Party voters. There is a keen land value tax man and someone connected with a church based Liberty Trust. We have Steiner School enthusiasts and daughters and sons of ministers in a church. Some are involved in coast care and river care. Some are interested in small business and entrepreneurship.  It goes on. Amazing people, leaders in thinking and that's how it will be.

Collectively many of us believe, as Bruce Lipton and Steve Bhaerman write; "A miraculous healing await this planet once we accept our new responsibility to collectively tend the Garden rather than fight over the turf. When a critical mass of people truly own this belief in their hearts and minds and actually begin living from this truth, our world will emerge from the darkness in what will amount to a spontaneous evolution."

So I have had my first interview with a radio station and it was a student radio station who picked up the piece on how Auckland needs an Auckland currency. It was fine, I enjoyed it. Every time you speak to the media it stimulates you to learn more so you can answer better the next time.

And I have been working still on thinking about how we can get a politically acceptable policy on land tax. Is to be a Location Value Covenant or a Land Value Tax? We need a policy which isn't going to take ten years to implement. Every time I raise land tax someone says "Well that is political suicide". But if I start talking about getting a policy based on existing contract law which means that instead of paying the banks for your house you pay the Council or Central Government, the reaction is different. If you pay Central Government, then will have enough revenue to drop GST and soon income tax.

Imagine a time when all landowners have to pay and nobody can gain advantage by taking their assets overseas or paying for an army of accountants who minimise their tax. Imagine a time when you can work all you want and don't get penalised for it, but prices are low because there is no interest built into the price of goods, no GST and no income tax. More spending power. Imagine a time when we have thriving local economies because local authorities have issued a different sort of money, one that depreciates like the goods they represent. Imagine a time when people spend their local money in sustainable business investments rather than in speculating in land or simply banking the money and keeping it out of circulation. As Silvio Gesell says in his book The Natural Economic Order "Money is an instrument of exchange and nothing else".

Last week both Laurence and I were interviewed by Rose Diamond in her A Whole New World Series