The End Of Economics
from PAID Newsletter, Norwich England, 1989
Define, don’t be defined
Before tackling the topic of usury, i.e. interest debt and zero worth money, we must put it in context. Most importantly, we want to place it in a context that is of our own defining. This is of fundamental importance, because the dominant place of the userers has enabled them – through their high-tech network of money, markets and media – to impose their definitions upon the rest of humankind. We think of the problem, and the solution in predefined terms that are not of our own choosing. If we continue to remain within their sphere of meaning we will be trapped, unable to make any changes. The first steps that must be taken towards change and freedom are steps of defining.
If we view the phenomenon of usury from a historical perspective, in a long shot, so to speak, we can see that it has been limited and forbidden by every civilisation that valued the higher human qualities, such as trust, justice, the pursuit of knowledge and the spiritual encounter with the Divine.
As is clearly documented in the book, Usury: The Root Cause Of Injustice Of Our Times, the legalisation of usury in Europe a mere 300 years ago has permitted the dominance of a new breed of middlemen. They have conquered the zone of the transaction, totally to the extent that now all of us are forced to buy and sell in their markets, on their terms, using their banks, their money, and their technology. Opting out is simply not permitted.
The development of centralised banking networks and the creation of money, both began and remain today, firmly in the hands of private, non-government, non-elected groups of individuals. The Bank of England, despite the implications of its name, is not run by the government. The Federal Reserve Board, a governmentish sounding name if ever there was one, is not under the control of the US government. Quite the opposite.
The nation state have relinquished power to the supra-national monetarist elite, who now, almost overtly, dictate domestic policy. The nation state has become a control-zone within which a particular type of ID card and a particular paper money must be used. They have no power of their own. Their leaders are recruited and trained by the monetarists to carry out their policies, under the camouflage of the democratic process. Opposition to monetarist policy is seen as a head-on confrontation with the state, and is either absorbed into the pro/anti dialectical framework or it is discreetly removed. The dialectic is the defense mechanism of the userers, and the democratic process their trojan horse.
Britain is a classic example. Mrs. Thatcher, in true corporate raider style, has stripped the assets of the nation and sold them to the highest bidder, but who benefits? Certainly not the average citizen who is struggling for survival under the burden of ever-increasing debt. When Mr. Lawson, now no doubt destined for even greater things within the corporate sector, when he said recently that no one was happy to see higher interest rates, he ommited to add ‘except the money-lenders.’
Once all business have to compete with the price of money, and the gravitational pull towards gigantism, it is inevitable that the small family business has llittle or no chance of survival. Short people drown first in a rising tide. The individual, alone with his own debts and anxieties, facing the might of corporate power, is unlikely to dare to step out of line.
When Mr. Sid Average comes back from the bank, happy that he too is now an stock-owner, and he can share in the wealth of this great nation, he is unlikely to be aware that, comes tomorrow or the day after, his bank, his mortgage company, his employer, his gas, his electricity and water suppliers, the newspaper and TV companies may all be controlled by the same group of people. It is not a conspiracy, it is just the way it is. Once a corporation is on the open market, where all are free to compete equally and the highest bidder wins, the winner is likely to be the one with the biggest bank roll. If one group is allowed to print money at will, and lend it at interest, they are likely to have the biggest roll. Lives are bought and sold in our free society.
We now find ourselves completely absorbed into the technological project, which has become the dominant global activity. Everything becomes an available resource to be used to further the project. Sustaining the economic structure becomes of paramount importance, as if everything and everyone depends on it for their survival. Everything is judged in terms of efficiency and cost-effectiveness, if you cannot measure it or add it up, then forget it. Quality itself has no value, unless it means you can charge more because of it.
And what about our humanity, and those things that give our lives meaning? Once we are subsumed under the dominant technological project, we become just another available resource. We are redefined. We are consumers, borrowers, mortgage payers (incorrectly called house owners), components of a market sector, just another part of the production and consumption process.
If we are serious about making changes, then we must look deeply into the causes of our predicament, and be prepared to act in accordance with what we find, for the current status quo is fuelled by our passivity.
Somewhere along the way we have relinquished responsibility for our own lives, for our being here. If we do not take our lives into our own hands, then we will have no one to blame but ourselves.
And so what shall we do, and where do we begin?
If we consider medical analogy at this point it may shed some light on our situation. Imagine someone with a complicated array of physical symptoms that refuse to respond to treatment, and continually deteriorate.
Rather than opting for more surgery and wonder drugs, one may find that on close inspection this person follows a set of behaviour patterns that are clearly aggravating, or even causing the problem. He may live on a diet of junk food, alcohol and cigarettes. He may take no exercise and spend two hours each day driving in rush hour traffic. He may well be so short of vital nutrients and so full of toxin that his body cannot be other than a manifestation of that imbalance. On top of all this he may be in the middle of a breakdown of his marriage, and have a job that he hates but dares not quit.
Delving deeper, we may find that he is not in any way believe that his actions are of any consequence, so why should he change. He does not much like himself or his wife, so why bother.
Clearly, until this person changes his behaviour, his health will not improve, and until he changes his attitude and his basic beliefs, he will not be capable of changing his behaviour.
We can see that the events that surrounded the legislation of usury in England in the late 17th century were actually a manifestation of a shift in people’s basic beliefs. The generally accepted definitions of human being, and his place and function in existence went through fundamental changes that are still current today, and indeed underpin every aspect of modern life.
If you dissolve the universal contract between the Creator and the created, and declare man the master of the universe, you open the door to all manner of corruption and imbalance. Man’s inner being and his higher nature are then denied any reality, and will in any case be smothered in the scramble to get what you can, fuelled by the underlying anxiety out there, get a job, make some money. BE somebody.
While no one is suggesting that we go back to the worldview of 17th century England, we would do well to listen to the voices who warned of what was to come. Throughout the following decades and centuries, we can consistently hear voices warning that if we do not change our
fundamental ideas about what life is all abouit, we will be heading for disaster – in this world, never mind the next.
Belief, that most fundamental of all human qualities, was hijacked, and deflected onto the fantasy wealth, and as it settled on the unkept paper promises, it gave reality and value to illusion. And so of course the illusion worked. Everyone believed it.
In The Ten Symphonies of Gorka Konig by Ian Dallas, one of the characters says, ‘As long as you think money is real, you will be an obedient slave. Once you grasp that it is worthless you recognise poverty in the fantasy money system, and at the same time real wealth in the world’s natural resources, the greatest of which is man and woman.’
We must re-evaluate our possibilities and realise our potential.
In practical terms this means, quite simply, meeting, studying, discussing, de-programming, encouraging one another to fulfill our highest possibilities, for this is the antidote to the drugged sleepwalk that passes for modern life. Above all it means believing that we can and do make a difference.
The Power of the Butterfly
Reductionist scientific thinking has attempted to shrink life into a set of linear equations and cashflow charts. Thankfully life is NOT linear, so it cannot be done, and while their experiments may work on paper and on the screen, you get a different set of results when things are played out in real life. Hence that current disaster scenario.
Rational scientific thinking has actually brought itself out of a job, because, forced to accept that life is a nonlinear event, and attempting to express probabilities in nonlinear equations, they have found that nothing can actually be predicted at all, except perhaps the limits of prediction. An expression of this is the statement by the proponents of the Chaos theory that a butterfly fluttering its wings on one side of the earth could cause a hurricane on the other.
So we do not know what effect we are having by our apparently insignificant meetings and publications. We cannot measure it. What has been clearly shown is that the outcome of an event is affected by the aspirations of the participants. We must believe that success is ours for the taking. Why should it not be?
We are confronting people whose weakness is the very thing that they believe gives them power. They think that they are in charge of existence, that they can conquer it, tame it, and make profit out of it.
They do not believe that they will ever face a reckoning for their actions. And they are wrong.
This is usurious thinking, for this attitude causes the build-up of an ever-increasing debt that like toxic waste, does not just disappear simply because you bury it, or export it, or ignore it. The accumulated debts of injustice are waiting to be collected.
And like a counter balance, the world is waiting for people who are prepared to fulfill their truly human potential as guardians of the earth and its inhabitants, of life itself, people who uphold the right and forbid the wrong. This is not achieved by direct opposition to usurious system and its masters, for they are strengthened by opposition. It gives them a reality. Like the classic piece of sixties graffiti said, ‘Don’t vote, it only encourages them.’ Their fantasy strength is reinforced by opposition to it. Like the phantom in a nightmare, it will only vanish if it is ignored. The more you attack it, the bigger it gets.
This tyrannical system will be over come by people who turn away from it – not by dropping out – but by declaring it a fantasy, and saying, with certainty, ‘That is false, Reality is with us.’ The capacity of people to transform themselves and their lives is the very thing that will conquer. If we refuse to be owned slaves, then we must be different Affirm the real, for when the REAL comes, the false must vanish.
People who are bound together with the true human companionship that comes from undertaking a journey or a task or a commitment that, even though it might appear too awesome to bear, is in fact the only available option – these people carry with them the seed of life that is unstoppable.
To do otherwise is to resign oneself to a life of unfulfilled potential and to being at best, mediocre. The more we meet, and discuss, and learn from each other, and share life, celebrate life, the more our members will grow and possibilities will open up, possibilities that we cannot know of or imagine, until we take the step.
I can do no better than to end with the words of Goethe, that visionary poet, opponent of usury and protector of humanity.
‘Until there is commitment, there is hesistancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative and creation, there is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one commits oneself, the Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occured. A whole stream of events issues forth from the decision, raising in one’s favour all manner of unforseen incidents and meetings and material assistance which no man could have dreamed would have come his way.’
‘Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now.’
This is not an economic issue, it is a human one.
PAID – People Against Interest-Debt