Anglicans lose AUS$100m in market slump
by Betty Luks
I wondered how long it would be before the public was told about the financial losses of the churches in Australia. It was just before the 2008 Christmas Season that news broke of the Church of England 's financial losses through the collapse of the stock markets. Anyone who thought that the C-of-E was the only Christian church playing the share-speculation-derivatives casinos was very na 've.
Geoffrey Dobbs warned us fifty years ago that the Christian Church leaders had no understanding of a Christian view of money and taxes, etc. and were just as active in the fraudulent system as the rest of us.
In his booklet 'The Just Tax he explained the Christian Church leaders had no understanding of the fraudulent-immoral nature of inflation, let alone the fraudulent basis of the modern money system.
And yet, in the New Testament it is recorded the Lord was scathing of the Scribes and Pharisees describing them as 'clippers and cutters the ancient means of inflating the money system - thereby reducing the purchasing power of the people 's gold or silver coins.
The ABC reported 10th June 2009: 'Anglicans lose $100m in market slump Anglican Archbishop of Sydney Peter Jensen has written to parishes. Australia's largest and wealthiest Anglican Diocese, Sydney, has been rocked by the global financial crisis, losing more than $100 million on the sharemarket.
Sydney's Anglican Archbishop, Dr Peter Jensen, has written to parishes about the 'very significant losses' after the Archdiocese borrowed to invest on the sharemarket, which crashed at the end of 2008. The letter states that the strategy had made a special $20 million building fund possible in 2007, but that the investment value has now fallen by more than half. The loss means funding for diocese services next year has been slashed to just over $5.5 million.
The Anglican Bishop of South Sydney, Robert Forsythe, says while the church's resources will be greatly affected, Sydney parishes will be spared. "It will have impacts on a number of our institutions," he said.
"It will not affect the parishes directly because each parish in our church is self-funding. This investment money was more for various central services like our theological college, Anglican Media and Youthworks. There'll be inevitable and significant cutbacks in those areas from 2010 on."
The Bishop says the church has been humbled by the loss, but he says it needed to invest in the stockmarket to help build churches. "If the critics are complaining that we shouldn't have lost the money I want to say, yes you're right - it's a terrible loss," he said. "We've done very well over many, many years through putting our money in investments, but that also means that there are times when you can seriously lose."
But the Rector of St Albans in Epping, John Cornish, says the church should never have borrowed to buy shares.
"This is an inheritance that has been passed down over the years and it should be treated as money which should be put to good purposes, not gambled," he said. "In other organisations transparency is evident, and in the end somebody takes responsibility, and in some cases that somebody resigns. I'm not saying somebody should resign here, but somebody should own up to what has happened."
FINANCIAL 'CRISIS' '
CATASTROPHE OR OPPORTUNITY?
The following is based on a paper presented to the Conservative Speakers Club, Adelaide June 2009. In Part I of this paper I spoke of Elizabeth Gaskell's novel "North
and South"- an 1850's portrait of life experienced by the various strata of
society during the second wave of the Industrial Revolution.
The story line focuses on Old Money and privilege, (the South - Helstone) and New
Money and manufacturing (the North-Milton) and the Working
Class in their battle for better living conditions and wages. The novel is centred on the "Second Wave" of the Industrial Revolution; that which occupied the period between the 1830's to the 1850's. A period
concerned not so much with invention as with organisation of industries.
I quoted C.H. Douglas who summed up the environmental damage and social price paid for these times:
' No war ever devastated a smiling countryside so thoroughly - and for so long -
as did the textile industries and their ancillary trades devastate south
Lancashire." The political balance of power had shifted to the
manufacturer-exporter and the economic policy of Great Britain had changed
from a policy of self-sufficiency to trade dependence.
Surely, if you think about it, a balanced, whole, self-sufficient economic policy of a nation must include the trinity of production, distribution and consumption? As the word economics once meant.
In the book Elizabeth Gaskell has Margaret the Churchwoman and her Father, former priest and now a Dissenter, appealing for John Thornton, the Master (manufacturer and mill owner) and Higgins the Worker (and 'Committee member forerunner of trade union representative), to reason together; to at least try to see
the other's point of view.
As a third party not involved in the dispute, the Dissenter Father explains that 'as a teacher who talks with both sides of the dispute, he can see that each has valid points of concern - and so appeals to both parties to sit down together and discuss their problems and positions. A very Christian appeal indeed! For me, the author of the novel is exploring the possibilities embodied in the 2nd Great Commandment... which relates to human associations: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."
In other words, recognise, understand, that for the relationship to work, it must be a mutual relationship, in which case, consent and agreement by both parties is the basis upon which a right relationship works.
To the very end of the story, Thornton (the Master) wished for the opportunity of cultivating some intercourse with the workers beyond the mere 'cash nexus' (wages). And, at times he goes out of his way to engage in discussions with his workers on issues
and conditions for both their benefit - for their mutual benefit.
For the worker and the issue of his wages, - 'the cash nexus '- the only power he could see that he had, was to join forces with other fellow workers and strike. That was his bargaining power to obtain his 'price for his labour i.e., for a just or fair wage. His price was a wage sufficient for him to feed and clothe and house himself and his dependents.
As for the Master, he saw that he was bound by the 'rules of good business sense '; he had to stick to those rules or go out of business - or go bankrupt.
But neither master nor worker could see beyond the obvious antagonisms between them that is, Workers wages and for the Master, such concerns as: costs and overheads involved in the production processes, competition from other manufacturers, and finally prices obtained in the market place.
In the film story, Thornton visits London's Great Exhibition of 1851, and was enthralled to see the
products, the new inventions, and the machines brought together under the one roof, from all over the Empire. And, the scriptwriter has him observing:
"Technologically, we are the envy of the world - if only there was a mechanism
to let us all live together, to take advantage of the great benefits that come from
But, Thornton believed, the answer to the problems of 'the cash nexus between Worker and Master, would
be for future generations to find, lamenting:
"We can bring back Marmosets from Mozambique, but we cannot stop Man
from behaving as he always has."
Cash Nexus? Wages, Costs of production? Prices in the market place?
Ah haaa! 'thought I.
Because we have the benefit of hindsight, we can pick up the fault in the novelist 's reasoning. Thornton, according to the author, seems to think it is a moral problem rather than a practical problem. Not only that, the problem, Thornton would have us believe, is insurmountable because it
originated within human nature, and, usually it is stated as: 'It is because of man 's greed. '
If the nature of the problem is a moral and spiritual one - and man 's sinful nature must always be taken into account - then we are doomed to continue making the same errors, time after time, after time. I would like a penny for every time people have said to me the problem is man 's greed. But, let us continue '.
It was one thing for the Dissenter to state the principle - the fundamental truth You could say the guiding truth:
'Do unto others as you would have them
do unto you" it was and is quite another matter to find the right 'key - to the specific problem and come up with a solution!
"How so?" You may well ask '
Picture the manufacturer-owner, Thornton, with his weaving looms in full
throttle. The production, in comparison to humans supplying the power to
work the machines, is huge.
The workers are not weaving the cotton, the machines are weaving the cotton, the workers are operating the machines - and the productive output now depends on the power running the machines. The more power generated - the greater the productive output.
Surely what we are now observing is a time/energy/unit accounting ratio rather than a problem of the inherent weakness of mankind?
What of the 'cash nexus '? Where does the 'cash originate?
It doesn 't originate from either the Worker or the Master Manufacturer. The 'cash nexus already came from a third source, the banking system. Without fully realising it, both the manufacturer and the worker in their working relationship - are indirectly and directly governed by financial considerations.
Nicholas' lowly wage is included in all
the costs and overheads John Thornton, the manufacturer, must add together to determine the price he must obtain in the market place, i.e., if he is to be successful and not go bankrupt.
But, Thornton doesn't pay his machines wages; and yet, wages are the source
of the workers' purchasing power - surely the key to the dilemma can be found here? While Thornton could see his nation as the envy of the world with this huge potential productive capacity, he did not have the key to resolve the problem of wages, costing, and prices in the market place. Ask any manufacturer or businessman if
this is not so.
Were they Saints or Sinners?
With changed attitudes on both sides, (i.e., a change of hearts) working relations would have been on a
more friendlier footing, but, even if the Master was the most benevolent of
men, and/or the Worker the saintliest of workers, their best behaviour (human nature at its best] would not have resolved this particular problem for manufacturers in the Age of the Industrial Revolution.
It took another fifty years, along with the right circumstances and the
experiences of C.H. Douglas, prior to and during World War I, to reveal the key
to the problem. And we have yet to grasp its full potential if we are ever going to unlock the people's real
credit so that all may enjoy the fruits of the plant of this civilisation!
The KEY to the problem said Douglas, is CREDIT!
But how so? Douglas the practical engineer turned his cost-accounting mind to the practical question of the actual relationship between finance and the real economy of resources, goods, services and the people who willingly sought to co-operate to create communities fit to live in.
But, with more production, there was less purchasing power in relation to amount of production, over a given period of time. And, as we now know, Douglas enquiries into the functioning of the banking system provided the key
to the problem ... it was/it is Credit! Credit always issued as a debt. This is a problem of accounting declared Douglas, it is even a problem of National Accounting. It is not necessarily a problem of Human Nature at all.
Douglas published his findings in such books as: 'Economic Democracy ', The New and the Old Economics and 'Credit Power and Democracy '.
But we need to go back a little further in history to understand what Douglas began to grasp. In 1694, the directors of the Bank of England, on the basis of their claim to having a certain amount of gold in the bank 's vaults, (and a bankrupt government needing money), agreed to issue 'credit (money) to the government of the day. In other words, the Bank of England was given the power
to create 'credit out of nothing, issue this 'credit to the government and demand repayment with interest.
And then in 1844, under the Bank Charter Act of that year it was you could say officially, given the power to issue the nation 's credit, always issued as a debt and also to be repaid, with interest.
In Part I of my paper, I encouraged the audience to purchase a copy of the BBC production 'North and South" (from an ABC shop) and study it in the light of the Social Credit revelations and in particular, have the works of Anthony Cooney alongside for consideration and reference. Cooney fills in many of the gaps left out of the film which deals with the further development within the nation 's industrial system.
do remember the story was written in the 1850s and Cooney was writing in
the 1990's with the benefit of hindsight and Douglas' revelations.
The need to 'release reality '
You will grasp that Douglas saw the need for monetary reform, but not for itself
alone, but so that when it functioned as it should, and fulfilled its true purpose,
the Social Credit of the various communities and nations would be released As Eric Butler puts it so well it would Release Reality! The Tree of Life, the Plant of
Civilisation, would flourish for the benefit of all - all would be able to enjoy its fruits !
Under the present capitalist money system the world has experienced many wars including two world wars, recessions, depressions, upheaval of nations with the refugees of the conflicts fleeing to other parts of the world seeking a better life, and so on, and on and on. For centuries, there has been no long-term peace, and security, just intermittent uneasy peace, followed by wars, upheaval and insecurity. Douglas has said that under the present capitalist system he saw no way out of the boom and bust cycles.
We know that Douglas travelled the world to present his findings. Well, what happened when he did so? Frances Hutchinson, the present Chairman of the Social Credit Secretariat fills in details for us. She wrote:
'Economic Democracy, published in 1919, introduced all of Douglas basic concepts. He was motivated by concerns such as:
Why the necessity for economic growth? Why had the economic policy of Britain turned from one of self-sufficiency to trade dependence ?
(Australians should ask of their politicians the same questions)
Why don 't we have a policy of self-sufficiency?
Why did our politicians push for 'privatisation and 'globalisation instead?
Why did the financial mechanism require an ever increasing push in production - why was there no effective demand (in other words, purchasing power in the hands of the individual persons within the community) to distribute the production within the nation?
Why did industrial technology fail to deliver a comfortable lifestyle for all?
Why was there need for more and more productive output -- in order to distribute goods already produced?
And why didn 't the industrial revolution free Man from the long hours of labour and perpetual insecurity?
(Recognising the advantages of a modern money economy) - why did the decisions concerning its creation and circulation occur within banking circles?
And why were these decisions which were taken within banking circles, not democratically accountable to the community?
Douglas original observations were based on his practical experiences as consulting electrical engineer to Westinghouse in India and to the Post Office in London before the First World War I. Douglas had designed the fully automated, unmanned, Post Office Tube. His experiences in the field of engineering and manufacturing had already revealed to him that under the present financial set-up, it was financial restrictions that determined the introduction or not - of new technologies.
And yet at the outbreak of World War I, financial constraints were swept aside. Governments found money enough to conduct the war! How was this so?
A + B Theorem:
His observations, when working on the accounts at the Farnborough Aircraft Factory in 1916, of an imbalance between wages paid out and costs generated within a given period, gave rise to his widely-debated 'A+B theorem '.
Cast your mind back to the scene in North and South of the workers in the cotton mills. The workers operated the machines, but it was the power supplied to the machines that determined the productive capacity. It was the amount of energy generated.
But wait a moment. The workers could see more and more production coming from the machines, and yet they themselves were not benefitting from it, from that extra production. Those who know modern history will remember the Fabian socialists said the problem was the ownership of the machines - and wanted the productive system 'nationalised ', as happened in 1917 in Russia under the Soviet Regime. After seventy years, the system was proved to be an abject failure.
Douglas writings were the subject of extensive public debate throughout the UK in the 1920s and 1930s. After eighty years, surely Douglas A + B theorem demonstrates the truth, i.e., that finance-driven pressures to economic growth force expansion of production (and export) of material goods beyond a consumer-defined sufficiency.
In other words, 'over and beyond what the nation as a whole needs or consumes '. Because of the faulty financial system, the policy of the nation was forced to change from that of self-sufficiency to that of trade dependence.
But back to Douglas
In Douglas view, money could become a 'ticket system for distributing the community 's goods and services rather than a system of speculation operated by and for the financial benefit of a small section of society.
Ask yourself: what is the true purpose of a nation 's financial system? Is it merely a national accounting system? Or is it a system of speculation to be operated by and for the financial benefit of a small section of society?
Douglas saw that under the rules of modern capitalism, the production of manufactured goods at an ever-increasing rate, regardless of their usefulness so long as they are profitable, is the basis upon which MODERN capitalism operates. As long as 'real credit ', i.e., the means to maintain life, is controlled by financial credit, the community will be psychologically and financially coerced into patterns of production and consumption - which they do not necessarily want.
As Frances Hutchinson notes:
This continuous production - for production 's sake, based on modern capitalist rules will continue to destroy the social and ecological fabric upon which all economic activity depends.
But, back to the early 20th century '
The Fabian socialists of the early 20th century had infiltrated and gained control of the Labour movement in the UK and the London School of Economics was set up by wealthy Sir Ernest Cassell for the promotion of their ideas and philosophy. The concepts of Douglas social credit were ignored, and finally dismissed in a brief report entitled Labour and Social Credit (1922).
The report concluded that the Douglas-New Age Scheme was 'out of harmony with the trend of Labour thought, and ... indeed fundamentally opposed to the principles for which the Labour Party stands.
Douglas concept of how the banks could operate to the benefit of all was declared to be 'unworkable on the grounds that it did not accord with current banking practice ' '
In other words, the Labour Party Report, 'Labour and Social Credit 1922, backed the bankers and their system. The Report did pay lip-service to the problems of 'The dangers of the control of credit by profit-making interests - but how? Their answer was: by nationalising many of the smaller banks, thereby further centralising the financial system into the control of major banks, thus giving them further control over the nation 's financial system.
But as to how the nationalisation of the banking system would effectively alter the relationship between production and distribution by the lack of purchasing power was not a matter examined by the august Labour Party Committee. Douglas understood the Labour Party Report was, in fact, reinforcing the capitalist 's status quo.
Frances Hutchinson quotes a writer of the time who observed:
The Labour Party Report 'goes out of its way to state that, whether sound or not, a scheme which would give the worker higher wages, cheaper living, real control of both policy and conditions, and an incomparably wider outlook on life, and these both at once and progressively,.. . 'is fundamentally opposed to the principles for which the Labour Party stands. '
And, in time, the Fabians translated the meaning of the word 'socialism to mean 'the Supreme State to which every man must bow, and by whose officials all human activities from the cradle to the grave, and after, shall be regulated.
The Fabians declared their faith in the power of central planning, and coupled with their close association with the London School of Economics, that 'unimpeachably orthodox institution ', in effect betrayed the workers (such as Nicholas Higgins, worker and Committee representative) for a mess of Mammon 's financial and political pottage.
Later in the 20th century, the whole world experienced the fruits of the Bretton Woods agreement. This led on to 'globalisation ', 'privatisation and 'internationalisation of finance and commerce and trade, resulting, as an example, in the destruction of the manufacturing base of the main western countries and the rapacious mining of Australia 's resources and farms.
And then came the next 'financial crisis': Derivatives Trading
According to the authors of the book 'The Global Trap ', 'Money as a commodity is traded on the world 's money markets.
The most influential of the discreet agencies operating in the money markets is located in New York where 300 highly paid analysts work for Moody 's Investment Service.
Above the doorway, a huge 12-square-metre relief covered in gold leaf explains the company 's philosophy and interests:
'Commercial Credit is the invention of the modern world, and only the enlightened and best-governed nations are entitled to it. Credit is the life 's breath of the free system in modern trade. It has contributed more than a thousand times as much to the wealth of nations than all the mines in the world.
So, with the introduction of computers and the internet, it became so much easier and faster for the internationalists to conduct their affairs. In turn, this led to such activities as 'Derivatives Trading - the ruthless trading that has finally exposed the banks and their fraudulent system for all the world to see.
But first, what is Derivatives Trading?
Quoting again from 'The Global Trap ': 'In the old days, this futures or risk business served only as a kind of insurance for the real economy. Exporters, (of real goods) for example, could use insurance to protect themselves against fluctuations in the value of their trading partners currency.
But since the capacity of computers became virtually unlimited, the derivatives trade has made itself completely autonomous and an 'age of financial revolution (as the former BIS [Bank of International Settlement] president Alexandre Lamfalussy euphorically described it) has dawned.
All the big financial centres have long had their own exchange just for the futures trade. Between 1989 and 1995, the nominal value of contracts doubled every two years and reached the unimaginable sum of 41,000 billion dollars worldwide. This figure alone signals the dramatic change in the nature of financial transactions, only 2 to 3 per cent of which now directly serve to protect trade and industry.
According to Hans-Peter Martin and Harald Schumann in - - 'The Global Trap: Globalization and the Assault on Prosperity and Democracy 1998: 'All other contracts are bets organised among themselves by those who conjure with the market. Their formula is: 'I bet that in a year 's time the Dow Jones will be 250 points higher than now. Otherwise I 'll pay. ' ' '
So, what happened?
In my words, the Debt structure became too top heavy. The bankers had to get rid of some of the noughts at the end of the astronomical figures on their computers. This is done by 'turning off the credit tap and calling in debts ready for 'rollover (renewal) or debts outstanding. The results? First there was the collapse of the sub-prime housing market and then the collapse of some very big US investment banks.
According to Michael West in The Age 16/8/08:
'Hundreds of Australian charities, churches, local councils and even credit unions were looking at losses calculated at AUS$2 billion '
Ahaa, I thought at the time, at last I think we can get the attention of the Church leaders. There is no doubt 'the hip-pocket nerve of the Church would be hurting, just as are those in the communities. The Church was once the Moral Authority that the people looked to, to defend their rights and insist justice must prevail.
ALAS FOR THE 'CHILDREN OF LIGHT'
This year I was appointed a Synod representative at my local church - which meant I recently attended the Annual Synod for the Diocese of the Murray at Goolwa, South Australia. I was able to speak to a Motion which I had managed to have placed on the agenda for the Diocesan Synod.
The preface to the Motion was along these lines:
'On 29 December 2008 it was reported: 'Five senior Church of England bishops have slammed the British government over the financial crisis, accusing it of being 'morally corrupt '.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, said the PM 's plans for reviving the financial system, i.e., encouraging people to go out and spend on consumer goods, and his government 's intention to inject taxpayers money into the banking system was like a drug addict 'returning to the drug.
The Bishop of Manchester Nigel McCullock said: The government was 'beguiled by money and had acted 'scandalously over the financial crisis by encouraging further debt. He also said: 'The government believes that money can answer all of the problems and has encouraged greed and a love of money that the Bible says is the root of all evil.
As a result of the media reports, I wrote to the Archbishop of York John Sentamu on the matter. The Archbishop kindly responded to my letter but I have to bluntly say, for me, it was full of abstract moralisms and of no practical earthly use in coming to grips with answers to resolve the problems.
Simon Barrow 'Ekklesia ': Later I read an article by Simon Barrow, of the UK religion and society think tank 'Ekklesia which would have embarrassed the Church leaders no end. The Church was itself involved in the very dubious financial practices the leaders were publicly criticising others about.
I was able to point out on the matter of Derivatives: In the 1990s a young man named Nick Leeson was goaled for two years for having brought the Barings bank to its knees with his 'derivatives trading losses. The 'shell of the bank was later sold to a Dutch bank with the Barings directors receiving payments of one million pounds each - while their former employee was sent to goal!
Also, that with the financial 'meltdown the Church of England had potentially four million pounds wiped off the value of its holdings. Sadly, I commented, the ethical practises of the Church of England were also found wanting.
The very great problem of the modern Church not 'registering to the world around it.
I then touched on a very great problem I see the organised Church faces - and will face more and more whether it recognises it yet or not:
A fellow Christian from Victoria, Edward (Ted) Rock, wrote to me recently. Those in leadership within both the Roman Catholic and Anglican Church would know of Ted Rock because he has faithfully and continually, over many years, written to them on the question of mammon and Christ 's teachings.
Earlier, a farmer from Eyre Peninsula had written on John Howard 's short-sighted moves to abolish the Single Desk Policy for Australia 's farmers and warned John Howard was 'throwing the farmers to the wolves of international finance '. Ted Rock saw this move was 'surely a classic example of the sheer perversion of God's will concerning the supplying of man's needs.
He saw the move forcing Australia 's farmers into the jaws of the international money sharks, would force more and more farmers into bankruptcy and off the land. He saw that this further perversion of elevating means above ends 'has become so diabolical it has resulted in a suicide rate among Australian farmers now running at an estimated four per day. 'That figure, said Ted, 'was given by Rev. Greg Jones of Bush Church Aid on November 4th (2007) in St. George's Church, Wonthaggi, where I worship each Sunday. '
Ted continued: 'The Rev. Greg Jones told of how so many Christian pastors in rural Australia have become so depressed and feel so hopeless at the plight of their rural populations that they will not venture from their rectories and parsonages to bring any word of comfort to members of the farming community, knowing too many of them are on the verge of bankruptcy, or suicide."
This, I thought, is a good example of 'the leaders of the children of light' not having a clue what the children of darkness are up to - and bereft of any practical answers to offer their fellow Australians.
I mentioned that the (UK) Christian Council for Monetary Justice through spokesman The Rev. Canon Peter Challen has given Christians a lead in this matter. And included a copy of the Financial Statement he and others presented to a recent G20 meeting.
At the Synod I put forward the following Motion:
'That this Synod calls on the leaders of the Anglican Church of Australia to issue a clear statement on the true purpose of the nation 's financial system and requests our governments to act in harmony with the teachings of the Christian Faith. '
No objection to the Motion was forthcoming and it was passed.
But for me, the matter doesn 't end there. It is now up to me and I hope others will join me in the exercise within their own church communities to continue to insist the Church leaders give their flocks a clear statement on the true purpose of a financial system according to the teachings of the Christian Faith. As it is based on Natural Law I feel sure those who want to see a just system operating will have no trouble coming to grips with it. I recommend you read Geoffrey Dobbs 'The Just Tax '* for an introduction and better understanding of this matter.
But the story doesn 't end there Father of Russia 's Wall Street
On the Al jazeera website there was an article along the following lines: Known as 'Father of Russia 's Wall Street and one of Russia 's first millionaires who clawed his way to the top after the implosion of the Soviet System, 'has reincarnated the age-old system of barter a move he claims can save the world from economic ruin. It is an online operation called the 'Anti-Crisis Settlement and Accounting Centre '. When the financial world began to collapse around him he hired computer programmers to create an interactive database that would allow users to exchange goods and debts worldwide. German Sterligov says his system can replace bank loans which 'are unreliable.
In 2004 Sterligov sunk the bulk of his fortune into challenging Vladimir Putin in his re-election bid - and lost. He says he had to lose his money to see things differently. Interestingly, he became a devout Orthodox Christian over a decade ago. In my reading of what he is now doing, his system is along the lines of a Social Credit idea the League put out some years ago now in DVD form - called 'An Alternative Money System.
It is based on the concepts of Social Credit and if there is no turn-around from the present direction we are now headed, it has many important ideas each of us is going to have to get our minds around - if we are to survive.
A scenario for you to ponder over
Ladies and gentlemen, I want to finish this article with you thinking of the following scenario. But first you must understand I don 't believe that Life can be compartmentalised. Human life and relations cannot be divided into separate units, a genuine modern nation is one whole. Of many constituent elements or parts, yes, but there is still an organic 'wholeness to national life.
In Matt. 23: from verse 16 onwards, Jesus is challenging the Scribes and the Pharisees of ancient Judah with these words:
'Alas for you, blind guides! You who say 'If a man swears by the Temple, it has no force; but if a man swears by the gold of the temple, he is bound. Fools and blind guides! For which is of greater worth, the gold or the Temple that makes the gold sacred?
Or else, 'If a man swears by the altar, it has no force; but is a man swears by the offering that is on the altar, he is bound. 'You blind men! For which is of greater worth, the offering or the altar that makes the offering sacred? Therefore, when a man swears by heaven he is swearing by the throne of God and by the One who is seated there ' '
'Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and anise and cummin, and have left undone the weightier matters of the Law, justice and mercy; and faith (or faithful dealings). '
Isn 't it the BELIEF which attaches to gold and not the gold itself - which is the basis of the Scribes and Pharisees faith or belief, or credit? Remember, the word 'credit comes from the word creed 'I believe '.
Gold itself is not the catalyst that will turn on John Thornton 's engines and operate the machines. Nor is gold itself the catalyst whereby Nicholas Higgins claims food and clothing in the market place. It is the belief attached to the gold - be it gold coin, or gold bar, or gold jewel-currency, or gold decorations in the Temple, or the gold on the altar it is the belief that the gold coin can be offered and accepted by all parties concerned in the transactions (the faithful dealings) that sets the wheels of industry in motion, sets them turning.
It is upon the belief itself that claims made upon (now the pool of) production in the market place by Nicholas Higgins, with his gold coin, will be accepted and the transaction take place. The belief itself could just as easily be attached to stones, or shells, or paper money, or the banker 's 'credit as it presently is.
I have read of an islander group who attached their belief to a very large stone. One day it sunk while being transported across the sea to another island. The islanders still believe it is there, though they can no longer see it, resting on the bottom of the sea as it most probably does. It is the belief attached to the stone upon which their system works for them. It seems to me they would still have to have some 'accounting system for their daily transactions though.
Our belief could be attached to the real credit of this nation, the social credit, the belief that by working together, in faithful dealings, we can achieve what we want. And accurate records could be kept of our production, distribution and consumption.
An annual National Balance Sheet could be drawn up an accurate National Accounting System - based on a true recording of the resources and abundance of the production systems of this nation, with a share in the fruits of The Tree of Life or The Plant of this Civilisation - for all.
Take these thoughts away with you Mull over them. There is the key within - to open the door to the answers to our problems.
Further essential reading:
* 'The Just Tax by Geoffrey Dobbs
In a 1994 postscript Geoffrey Dobbs explained how he, a forest botanist, was invited in 1952 to write for a leading theological journal 'Theology ', usually written and read by professional clergy. It seems the theological world was ransacked for someone who had any ideas on the subject but no one could be found.
Then as now, while there was any amount of passionate discussion in the churches about the distribution of the taxation levied, the moral nature of taxation itself, or of the money of which it consists, was scarcely even then considered in the light of Christian theology.
With the recent 'financial crisis it could be the Church leaders are also having 'a reality check '. Copies of the updated version of 'The Just Tax are available for $4.00 plus postage.
'Social Credit: Politics by Anthony Cooney
The struggle is now a global struggle and must soon be resolved one way or the other. For its resolution in favour of Freedom it is necessary that people have at least a minimal awareness of the real nature of the struggle, for with knowledge properly applied, comes hope, that and the promotion of individual initiatives is the intention of this booklet. Price: $10.00 plus postage.
**DVD 'An Alternate Money System
Price $12.00 posted.
Available from Heritage Books P.O. Box 27 Happy Valley SA. 5159
A4 Photocopy: 'Outline of Social Credit by H.M.M. 1929
An excellent outline of Douglas initial discovery was first published in 1929. We have made photocopies available for $7.00 including postage, obtainable from Heritage Book Services, P.O. Box 27 Happy Valley 5159