Monthly Archives: November 2012

Pre-distribution: The future of capitalism?

In September, Ed Milliband spoke out about Labour’s vision for ‘Pre-distribtion’. I have been considering what PREDISTRIBUTION means (and if there is indeed a better way to express what is meant by it.) There are echo’s of thoughts, maybe just questions that need investigating, that I’ve had for some time.

One being, why give working people ‘tax back’ instead of just not taking it away in the first instance? Collection and RE-distribution is surely costly? Could PRE-distribution (or a more accurate named equivalent) save administration costs?

Why the former? Is it this idea of ‘deserving causes’? Perceived ‘need’ and various ‘justifications’? Not taking the money means that it becomes universal regardless of need, so some will spend on their needs, other on just their leisure. This leads us to parallels with modern arguments amongst some groups about how benefits are spent by their recipients anyway.

But is this line of reason justifiable, is it EVEN reasonable? No one tells a more wealthy person what they can or cant spend money on, each makes their own decisions according to the needs, desires and perceptions thereof.

In essence RE-distribution, in the form of welfare, benefits and tax credits, precipitates political and social control, the subjugation of an economic class of people. Rebalancing the capitalist system to a PRE-dsitributive model would contain the out-of-balance problems of ‘rampant capitalism’ before they occurs, which the current redistributive system attempts to constantly intervene and correct-balance, and thereby reduce the administrative cost borne collectively.

And the sheep bleated loudly and repeatedly, “private good, public bad!” And Squealer triumphed how much better it was than in Brown’s day.

Squealer listed their achievements: unemployment was down! Welfare reform worked! Growth was up! Inflation might have been up, but it had all been much worse under Brown.

Stalin’s Communism, Cameron’s Conservatism. I looked from one to the other, and back: but it was impossible to say which was which.

After George Orwell.

Public Banking – has it’s time come?

The banking system in the UK is broken. The tax payer had to bail it out to the tune of over £1.2 trillion since 2008, and the costs keep rising. With 80% of some of the major banks in public ownership and being run, albeit at arms length, by the Treasury, businesses are still finding it impossible to raise capital for expansion.

It’s time for a new model of banking in the UK. Take a look at Germany.

Germany isn’t in a banking crisis and has not had to bail out its banks. It’s GDP is growing at around 3% currently. It has a three pillar banking structure, each totally separate from each other. The Public Banking sector has a share of 40% of the country’s total banking assets. Germany clearly has something to teach us about how to structure our financial sector.

Why does our Governments all ways look to America or Far East for its ideas, and never to Germany or Scandinavia etc? I think we should follow!

For more information on the German public banking sector read: (click it) where it explains in more detail how the public banks work.

I think it’s time in the UK has come.

When does political rhetoric become dangerous propaganda? Part One

We will shortly be observing the two days of remembrance, the two minutes of silence on Armistice Day (11th November) and Remembrance Sunday (2nd Sunday of November). 70 years ago the world was engulfed by warfare on a scale never seen and, across Europe, Hitler’s armies seemed to be unstoppable with most of the continent occupied and controlled by Nazi Germany. The tide was soon to turn, and the allies fought back and defeated fascism.

But nothing had prepared the allied troops for the horrors they found at the German prisoner camps. The films and photographs of pits piled with corpses shocked the world. Nazi leaders were brought to trial at Nuremberg for the crimes and the Holocaust inflicted by the Nazis. Dozens were hanged for their crimes.

Many vowed that “Never Again” this should happen.

The Jews had been particularly targeted by the Nazis, but often overlooked were the other groups that they persecuted and murdered. These included:

  • the disabled,
  • people with incurable mental and physical illnesses,
  • social misfits such as the homeless and unemployed,
  • gays,
  • gypsies,
  • Jehovah Witnesses,
  • the Polish
  • and political opponents.

All in all, the Germans deliberately killed about 11 million non-combatant, a figure that rises to more than 12 million if foreseeable deaths from deportation, hunger, and sentences in concentration camps are included.

But how could such a thing have happened? How could the Germans reached a stage where by they enacted the industrialised process of killing people on such an enormous scale?

In this extract from the BBC series Planet Word, Stephen Fry’s takes us back to Germany in the early 1930, a time of world wide economic crisis and austerity not unlike today.  Stephen talks about the language used by the Nazis to change the opinion of ordinary humans in a manner that would dehumanise groups of people whom the Nazis would then proceed to kill.

In my next post I will explore the idea of rhetoric and propaganda further, and see if there are lessons we can apply to our current economic challenges.