Please note that the following is NOT the authorative version on TFE, but I have posted it here out of general interest. The most authorative, and trusted version is at http://www.p2pfoundation.net/Transfinancial_Economics
The summary found here gives one a basic overview of Transfinancial Economics, or TFE which then leads on to a more detailed essay, or "paper". It should just take a few minutes to read for those pressed for time. However, it should be noted that it comes after a short summary of Positive Human Politics, or PHP. Like TFE it is a research, and development project but no detailed essay, or "paper" follows it. Essentially, PHP is the basic political background of our main subject matter. One can skip it if desired, and go straight to the summary on TFE.
Also, a short list of references are placed right at the end of this presentation. Alot more may be added at some future date.
Positive Human Politics, or PHP/ The Basic Summary preceeding Transfinancial Economics Overview.Positive Human Politics, or PHP can be seen as the Modern Universal "Paradigm". Like TFE it is neither right-wing, or left-wing in approach but simply creates a basic transformative humanitarian framework. In it realistic, civilized,and progressive solutions, or options are presented. It seeks for the popularisation of such notions to largely replace negative thinking, and general apathy on all things political.
Most of the major ideas for PHP already exist under different terms, and tend to vary only in "minor" detail as far as theory, and practice are concerned (eg. gaian democracies, co-intelligence, holistic politics, et al).A book entitled The Age of Consent by the journalist George Monbiot is a good example of advanced thinking involving among other things the concept of a genuinely accountable World Parliament. The futurist Jacque Fresco offers in his writings, and talks a more "utopian" view of what could be. He draws his inspiration from technocracy,transhumanism, and the like.
There are many examples of Positive Human Politics. They notably include the following:-
a) The continued relevance, and importance of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as the basic ethical foundation for change. This would lead to the greater development of possible enforceable International Laws along with their "correct" interpretation.
b) Empower positive citzenship.
c)The possible option of direct participatory democracy using computer voting by an educated informed public.
d) Greater evolution away from adversarial politics to something more positive, and progressive.
e)Reducing the information overload notably of social, economic, and political knowledge using the least number of words to describe issues for, and against a topic in a way which is seen to be genuinely open, holistic,and accountable. This would have notable implications for direct democracy.
f)Binary Economics, and other similiar proposals for fairer wealth distribution.
g)The importance of the proper, and safe development of new sustainable technologies.
h) Full-scale nuclear disarmanent if at all possible, or at least the simultaneous development of non-lethal weapons in which death, and destruction no longer occur in "pointless" wars.
i) The European Union can also be seen as a form of positive, progressive evolution, but still requires more reforms to make it more open, and legally accountable. The idea of a Super-State may seem fine in principle but such a political union may well be superflous. Growing cooperation between independent sovereign states is arguably the best, and "safest" way forward.
Such proposals are good examples of PHP. Yet, we have no intention of expanding this subject. Much of it anyway is pretty obvious to all "right-thinking people".Unlike TFE there is as yet no lengthy essay on PHP giving further details. Now, we examine the former.
Transfinancial Economics/ The Basic Summary.Transfinancial Economics, or TFE itself is also known as Non-Taxation Monetary Reform. It believes that new unearned money could be created for democratic governments both local, and national without raising taxes. Many NGOs, or independent non-governmental organizations could also be funded in a similiar manner either in full, or in part. Thus, in most cases, fundraising, and donations should be largely unnecessary.This can also lead to greater decentralisation of power from central government if desired.
Anyway,the creation of new unearned money itself without taxes, or fundraising would not lead to uncontrolled inflation, and devaluation of currency.This would be directly controlled by advanced computer technology. However, anonymous cash transactions would still be possible.
There is more than enough money to change the world. The problem notably for NGOs is legal access to it.
In TFE there is no redistribution of financial wealth, but NGOs concerned with fairer wealth distribution, and morally progressive concepts such as Binary Economics would be financially empowered as never before. Thus, their influence on public opinion would be far greater.
For some people TFE can be seen as a "transitional" system that would ideally lead from the greed of competative capitalism to fairer economic systems both large, and small which would cooperate with each other. Unfortunately, this process would probably take many, many decades to occur.Though "scientific" evidence indicates that mutual cooperation for selfish ends is the real natural driving force in society there will "always" be the few who are "greedy," and "competative" enough to succeed as top businessmen, and command huge sums of "earned" money, and resources.
On the other hand, real genuine socialism which confessedly has a more just, and fairer understanding of capital may gradually manifest itself fully. There may even come a time when everything may become free on demand without exchange of money at all.
TFE realizes though that the present competative capitalist system is too well entrenched in society for it to be removed. As such it does not waste time opposing it but uses its new understanding of money to allow it to flourish as never before.
As already indicated, and bears repetition there is also the new financial empowerment of NGOs concerned with social, economic, and political reform. They would be able as never before to speed up the pace of positive change.
Apart from the creation of new unearned money interest free loans could also be created responsibly. In TFE we are also dealing with a high, or higher growth economy. With the introduction of a tax, and interest free world research, and deployment of various simple, and complex sustainable technologies would be speeded up as never before to ensure that total resource scarcity cannot happen.To a very limited extent, this is already occuring in the rich Western countries.
The possible social, economic, and political implications of TFE are massive. The creation of new unearned money can solve many problems including:-
ii) Greater financial empowerment of NGOs concerned with corporate responsibility in connection notably with the environmental destruction, and the rights of workers. These would be challenged as never before on an equal playing field.
However,a more positive, and totally revolutionary approach (called Ethical Business Conversion, or EBC)is the notion that they can become reformed with powerful monetary inducements (or legalized "bribes")to behave more ethically, and in a way which respects sustainability, and environmentalism. At the same time, they would create even greater profits (heavily subsidized ofcourse)than before! TFE would be in their own interest if they are able to understand its massive global significance.
More importantly, positive engagement with corporations, and indeed, banks (which under license could have their interest, and other charges created for them by an independent financial authority without charging the customer) would make the changeover to a tax, and interest free economy alot easier to materialize than launching a moral crusade against them. More importantly, humanity may not have long to go unless there is new, and revolutionary understanding of capital which is the power that controls the use, and abuse of limited resources. Cleverly reforming who, or what has this power is the key to the future.
iii) Huge high risk projects which may have great social,economic, and political value (eg. an environmental programme perhaps vital for the planet) would be possible with the creation of new unearned money.
This could for example imply the greater financial empowerment of corporations to create sustainable futuristic cities intended to be underground, undersea, and/or even floating on the sea to help ease greater population growth.
iv) The creation of more business grants, plus interest free loans allowing for continous material prosperity. This would also have obvious positive implications for various investments such as stocks, and shares as markets would be more stable.
v) If desired, more public services could be provided, and would be better financed.
vii) With the advance of automation the future will become increasingly jobless. Yet, if necessary it would be possible to have special businesses, and/or NGOs which could be created out of new unearned money. They would supply more advanced types of paid work which may be more akin to "leisure-type" pursuits than what we have now.
Introduction to Transfinancial Economics.
The Main Essay/"Paper".This is a brief "non-technical" introduction to a "new" futuristic monetary reform. It is called Transfinancial Economics (TFE), or Non-Taxation Monetary Reform. It revolves around the concept that new non-repayable unearned money can be responsibly created without raising taxes, or even fundraising in many cases. This is a "revolution" in our understanding of money, and the world. In the right hands, this concept could be one of the greatest breakthroughs of the 21st century, and beyond.
It must be made abundantly clear from the start that TFE has nothing to do with the so-called New World Order, or certain "over the top" conspiracy theories, or anti-semitism. What we are dealing with here is the positive progressive evolution towards genuine open democracy. This is indicated in the summary on Positive Human Politics,or PHP discussed earlier on.
Legal Access to Financial Power,and Possible Decentralisation.There are four main organisations that could responsibly order the creation of new money. They are as follows:-
However, all this does not mean more government waste, or abuse of money. On the contrary, more powerful legislation would be introduced to curb this. Moreover, it must be remembered, and understood that such future democratic governments would not have a massive lump sum of tax money to draw upon. This would only encourage overspending but with TFE it is simply created in a measured way, and only after scrutiny from a Treasury Bank which would have genuine legal powers.
Also,import duties,and taxes on tobacco, alcohol, et al would still exist but would be re-defined as special charges, or civil fines.
ii) Local Government: This organisation could responsibly order the creation of new money from a Treasury Bank without the need to raise county taxes. Hence, various community progammes would be properly funded, and reformed where necessary.
iii) NGOs, or Non-Governmental Organisations: Many of them would would no longer have to largely rely upon the public, or wealthy donors. Instead, they could receive new funds via a foundation,or trust (as is the case today)which would order the creation of new money from a Grant Generating Bank. These financial institutions would be independent of governments, and transnational companies, or TNCs.
The resulting money originating from the Grant Generating Bank would be given by the trusts, and foundations in full, or in part to various NGOs. Charities concerned with the Third World, heart disease, cancer, AIDs, and other humanitarian causes would more than likely be fully funded. Yet, other NGOs would only be in part financed by new money. The implications of all this for democracy, and humanity are stupendous.
With more financial empowerment of NGOs greater decentralisation of power from central government can be achieved if desired. This point is especially relevant at the present time as politics, and politicians have clearly lost all credibility, and new alternatives are needed.
It is important to understand that from an objective viewpoint unearned new money is just as valuable as that which has been earned many times over. In TFE we are trying to create a more advanced financial system which tries to put humanity first, rather than just money when it comes to important social, economic, and political problems.
Ofcourse, finance itself is useless without effective planning, and relevant resources. This is true of goverments, NGOs, and indeed, everything else in life. But, at the end of the day no matter how advanced our social, economic, and political ideas, and reforms may be ultimately it has to be financed by somebody, or something. This is the simple, and inescapable truth.
In TFE money is regarded as a power which controls the use, and abuse of limited resources. By reforming it we can help change the world. The aim is to maximise the good it can achieve for humanity.
It must be pointed out that when we talk about creating "new money" we are ofcourse referring to electronic transmissions of it. Cash makes up a virtually non-existent portion of the entire money supply.
It is important to understand that there is such a thing as a free lunch. Government departments receive "free" money as grants which they have not been earned. Similiarly, a Will in which a beneficiary gets a large amount of money (though originally earned ofcourse) is something "unearned". Thus, it is an example of a free lunch.
Some people have pointed out that if money as new unearned electronic transmissions can be created without earning it the value of it as something vitally important, and "rare" is reduced. This is a nonsense. The question is this. Is money, more important than the genuine needs of humanity? For instance, if millions of children are starving, and there is little earned money to buy food to save lives... would it be morally right to allow them to die, or would it be more noble to have a system in which new unearned finance could be created? This could fully deal with such a situation as opposed to the limited approach of using aid, or charity funds (ie. earned money)which may not be enough to do the "job" properly? This, ofcourse is one of a number of examples that could be cited. Money, or humanity? We have just given the former a higher value, and purpose in the world.
Inflation, and Advanced Computer TechnologyInflation can be defined as the persistent rise in prices. As money outstrips the production of goods, and services their retail cost to customers goes up. At the same time, this can lead to the devaluation of currency. Thus, someone on a fixed wage may find that their cash buys less than before. In mainstream economics this basic concept of how price rises occurs is referred to as Monetarism, and there are a number of theories on how excess money actually enters the financial system.
In the past notably, there have been attempts to control inflation directly via policies on prices, and wages. These had mixed results, and were only temporary measures. At present, indirect methods to control inflation are used by raising, and lowering interest rates discussed later on.
Anyway, in TFE possible super-computers could be used to keep an eye on serious persistent price rises. It is a direct attempt at controlling inflation itself, and far more advanced, and effective than the old approach just mentioned. Essentially, the market in part continues to determine price, and wage changes. Such financial interactions are recorded on super-computers (or perhaps some form of upgraded computers). However, if there is a serious persistent rise in inflation of prices, and/or wages they are automatically fined, or capped. This appears on a bank statement.
The above has nothing to do with a centrally planned economy as understood in the old communist world. We are dealing here with a competative capitalist system in which Super-Flexible Pricing is allowable, and possible. This is where one is given a higher range of retail prices for a product, or service which has to be registered under law (compulsory like Income Tax).Admitedly, a certain amount of price distortion could occur but with Super-Flexible Pricing this would be largely minimised, or eradicated with certain modifications.
At first the introduction of direct electronic controls to tackle inflation would be unpopular. It would require strong democratic governments to implement it. Yet, businesses will learn to accept it, and would find it by far more beneficial than taxation on their profits. Indeed, they would experience rapid commercial expansion. To further enhance the situation, all business loans would be interest free too..
Anonymous cash transactions would still be possible. As is the case in our modern economy this makes up a near non-existent portion of the entire money supply, and thus, it would have little, or no affect on inflation. Products, and services (including certain wages) which have no obvious monetary value would be exempt from price registration. Again,these too would have little, or no affect on inflation as they would only make up a small portion of the entire productive economy. However, most products, and services have to be registered by law.
Advanced computers when properly programmed can ensure the value of peoples money when certain products, and services are purchased. To understand how this works a simple example should be enough. Lets say Mr. T buys product X which happens to be 10% above inflation then this very same percentage is created as new money, and is actually added to his bank account automatically. In TFE this is referred to as Inflation Interest. A version using cash could be possible too.
Some people have wondered what would happen if there was an excess money supply that would outstrip the production of goods, and services. The answer is simple. Such "wealth" would easily be saved for the time being in deposit accounts indexed-linked to inflation. With rapid economic growth more, and more products, and services become available, and the "dormant" funds due to excess money supply would now be able to buy them. In other words, they would become part of the productive capacity of the country.
Some people have suggested that the weakness of TFE is its reliance on advanced computer technology. Yet, we forget that our present banking system relies on it all the time. Out of necessity security is continually improved, and no hacker has yet brought down the entire network permanently. If that had been the case we would have all known about it!
Other critics have pointed out the problem of privacy. Yet, is it really such a problem.....especially when we realize that in our present world it hardly exists at all? In this respect, TFE is not necessarily going to make things any worse, or better as far as legal, and "illegal" access to personal information, or privacy is concerned.
Anyway, there are many other aspects concerned with electronic controls over inflation which cannot be discussed here, and at the end of the day they would have to be hammered out by experts in economics, and information technology.
The Problem of Redistribution.In TFE there is no redistribution of financial wealth. Rather there is a greater distribution of new money. The problem of redistribution at the present time is that the money involved is earned, and based on the productive capacity of the country. TFE goes beyond this to make sure that most social, economic,and political programmes, and projects carried out by democratic governments, and NGOs are properly funded as never before.
Let us take an example of what we are actually saying. The Tobin Tax on currency speculation is intended to raise funds for the Third World, and if it were implemented the resulting monies would probably not be enough. On the other hand, TFE would be able to maximise funding initially created by the Grant Generating Banks.To do this by taxation, or by fundraising is unnecessary, and backward. The best, and most effective means of achieving these aims is to have new money created responsibly.
The financial genius, George Soros has suggested that the Special Drawing Rights (or SDRs) of the International Monetary Fund could be created as grants rather than loans. These would help the Third World, and the idea is strikingly similiar to the concept of the creation of new unearned money in TFE.
Ofcourse, people make the valid point that there is more than enough money to change the world many times over. The problem lies with legal access to it whenever there is a genuine need for it. This is the key point to grasp.
The Major Anti-Tax Arguments.There are a number of excellent reasons for the abolition of direct, and indirect taxation. They are as follows.
2. Everyone is entitled to all the money they earn, and as such it is morally wrong to have some of it deducted for tax purposes when it is no longer necessary.
3. It is highly unethical to fund any waste, and abuse of government spending.
(This incidently includes the National Debt which is created by governments borrowing from private commercial banks. This is mainly paid for by the taxpayer.With TFE though this could be paid off, or destroyed as the elected authorities would have legal powers to do so via a Treasury Bank.)
4. Increasingly, the super-wealthy are finding legal loopholes to avoid tax, and as such they are not paying their fair share into the system. As a result all this means that the less well off are having to make up for the shortfall which is wrong. The situation is further made worse when bank accounts can be easily switched from one country to another thus making the life for the tax inspectors hell.
5. It is we, the people who create the real wealth of the country in the form of products, and services. Why then should we continue to be ripped off by a tax system when we can now at long last be rewarded by a democratic government with a policy of Non-Taxation? Why should we continually have to pay for everything?
6. Many wars,and revolutions have been directly, or indirectly caused by taxation. Its abolition would be popular, and a potential vote winner....as most people are more interested in their financial status than in politics, and politicians. TFE would thus be highly attractive to the masses.
Interest Free Monetary Reform.At the present time radical monetary reform is concerned with the power of banks. These private commercial companies create virtually all of the money of the world as loans, or credit. Strictly speaking, governments issue the rest as coins, and paper. The banks though produce it "out of thin air" by simply adding figures of a higher monetary value onto paper, and/or computers. There is also meant to be a limit on how much they can create, and this is based on "money" kept in reserve. This whole set-up is called fractional reserve banking. The banks ofcourse make huge super-normal profits on their loans for commercial, governmental, and private use (eg. mortgages).
Some critics of fractional reserve banking have stated that it is a fraud in that it counterfeits the national currency. More seriously, it produces non-existent "funny money" which is unwittingly accepted by all, and sundry. As with TFE they are able to create new unearned money on daily basis but as something which is repayable.
Since virtually all of the money in the world is produced by banks it is believed that changes in the interest rates of their loans may well be the real cause of inflation. When the economy is not doing well the interest rate on borrowing notably for businesses is reduced to encourage a high take up. This in turn means expansion of commercial enterprises, and increased employment leading to a general material prosperity. As more, and more money is allowed to circulate it has to be somehow reduced to avoid serious degrees of inflation. This is done by raising interest rates on loans so that they discourage commercial take up. This results in less business expansion, decreased employment, and a certain amount of economic depresson. The whole cycle is then repeated.
Anyhow, the aim of monetary reform itself here is to have loans created without interest. This could put a complete end to the business cycle of "boom", or "bust" just described. Interest free loans would be highly beneficial for the economy, society, and politics.It would also mean that the banking system itself would no longer be a massive commercial enterprise. Instead, an independent public authority would issue interest-free credit.
The big problem here ofcourse is that the banks are very powerful indeed. They would take immediate legal action against any country if they felt that their huge global monopoly was being seriously threatened. One way then to successfully undermine their great power is to use Simultaneous Policy. This is the modernization of an old concept. In it people can at election time vote for those candidates, and/or a party who are willing to accept their policy proposal. The aim here ideally is to get most countries to try, and implement it simultaneously. Such an approach could be used against banks who would have little, or no choice but to comply to their own demise. This could make way for independent public authorities which would lead to an interest free, and indeed, a tax free economy.
More controversially, there is another approach suggested by TFE. Banks could still make super-normal profits but without charging their customers. How? The answer lies with the concept of Auto-Profit companies. They receive new unearned money as profit. The calculation of the latter is directly based on business records of clients. Yet, many interest free monetary reformers would be horrified by such a proposition, but at least it could make the transition from a interest based economy to an interest free one alot easier. Indeed, the author is coming to the conclusion that this is the best way forward along with the need for positive engagement with banks, and corporations as explained later..
This brings us to another point. Non-Taxation Monetary Reform (ie. TFE) is far more important than Interest-Free Monetary Reform as its social, economic, and political benefits are totally outstanding. The latter should be united with the former if it is to be truly successful, or have any real impact on the public. As such Interest-Free Monetary Reform is seen as being of secondary importance compared with Non-Taxation Monetary Reform. Thus, both proposals make up Transfinancial Economics, or TFE.
Sustainable Economics, and Resource Scarcity.In the present era we live in a high growth economy. Green Sustainable Economics believes that this has lead to over-production, and over-consumption. It suggests that people should simplify their lives, and reduce their wants so that little, or no more natural resources are used up. In other words, it ideally sees the zero, or stationary growth economy as "the way forward." In such a world people would live in small self-organising, and self-sufficient communities consisting of family businesses, and cooperatives. A LETS (Local Exchange Trading Scheme)could also be included, and this is simply a made up alternative to money, or community currency which would be acceptable to those in the area, and possibly beyond. Food would largely be grown locally. Here, ofcourse, we are not discussing socialism, and redistribution of wealth but rather a fairer distribution of it.
All this sounds fine in principle but it would take many decades before it became a national, and indeed, an international reality. By then most, or perhaps all natural resources would have been used up. The ideas presented in the last paragraph are understandable reaction to governments, and big business. It is an attempt to be free of them, and instead take on the laudable mantle of self-sufficiency, and a more simple, and slower pace of life.
Unfortunately, it does not change the big problems of the world which are far more important. TFE is in the main concerned with this, and nothing else. Big changes require big ideas that must seriously address, and challenge the status quo no matter how difficult it may be.
The reality is that in the present high growth economy much of the earths wealth is being massively depleted at an unprecedented rate. Non-renewable oil, and coal are classic examples of this. But, all is not lost. New ideas, and green technologies are emerging which could help our planets plight.
In TFE it is believed that sustainability is indeed possible in a high, or rather higher growth economy. With the huge influx of new unearned money, and interest free loans, NGOs, and businesses will be able to speed up as never before the research, and deployment of various "safe" complex (eg. nanotechnology), and "simpler" clean, cheap, renewable technologies (eg. wind power, solar energy, biomass,wave power,thermal energy, et al) to "save the planet." Moreover, such funding can come independently of governments, and transnational corporations, or TNCs. In a like manner, future democratic governments, and even certain NGOs along with businesses would be able to undertake any gargantuan environmental (or non-environmental) project that might be vital for the survival of the human race.
A huge problem in all this is ofcourse the worlds reliance on oil, or black gold. With TFE the switch from this non-renewable resource to renewable ones could be accelerated. This would involve the gradual break up of the oil industry in which TNCs could be bought up by huge financial inducements in which shareholders could be paid off with large amounts in compensation. The top people though in the oil corporation concerned could still be paid massive profits using new unearned money but on condition that they involve themselves in the rapid mass production of sustainable technologies. Ofcourse, new profits could be heavily subsidized making the whole venture worthwhile, and viable in extremis. In other words, a legal "bribe." Such Ethical Business Conversion,or EBC could be funded with newly created money by the Grant Generating Banks, special business NGOs, and/or democractic governments.
Ofcourse, one of the major problems of todays world is global warming due to emission of greenhouse gases. Special green, or eco-taxes which try to reduce this are a limited approach compared with what TFE could achieve. However, they may prove to be vital, and realistic step in the right direction. In TFE ofcourse such taxes would be seen as civil "fines".
Apart from the above claims space research itself could be stepped up to find any clean alternative energy resources on other planets that may be invaluable for our world, and environment. This would involve massive injections of capital to be worthwhile, and successful. Ultimately, other planets would be colonized.
The Third World, and the Transnational Corporations.Year in, and year out millions of people mainly children die in Africa. This is a wholly unacceptable situation. To help relieve poverty a number of NGOs notably exist, but if they had legal access to continous funds they would be able to do so much more in the way of better health, free education, and setting up self-employment projects. At the same time many lives would be saved from useless, and pointless death. With TFE this would be possible without public donations, or indeed, government aid. The ultimate aim of such Third World NGOs is to help the poor help help themselves.
A key factor to the terrible poverty in Africa, and elsewhere in the Third World are the unfair trading laws, and the gargantuan power of the Transnational Corporations, or TNCs. The status quo does not fully allow the poor to export goods to rich countries due to restrictions. Thus, they are unable to earn their way out of poverty. The TNCs themselves on the other hand benefit from this situation as it gives them a huge monopoly over the production of goods, and services in the Third World. This earns them billions in exports to rich countries as they can get everything on the cheap (notably labour). At the same time, they have caused a large amount of environmental destruction which is is totally unacceptable.
Ideally,what is needed are genuine international trading laws which favour the poor as well as the rich. This could happen via Simultaneous Policy already mentioned.Yet, even if this were to come about it may still be difficult to enforce such legal measures. In TFE, there are two key approaches to this problem...
NGOs concerned with such matters of corporate responsibility (or lack of it!) would be able to successful challenge, and perhaps even reform the TNCs with various business tactics (eg.buying up shares). The reason being ofcourse is that they would be financially empowered as never before so that they could deal with them on a level playing field unlike now. This would be a big step forward for global justice.
Another more positive, and constructive approach is Ethical Business Conversion, or EBC discussed in connection with the oil industry. In it Grant Generating Banks,NGOs, and/or democratic governments would have huge financial power to create new unearned money. This could be used to improve, and replace non-evironmentally friendly technologies, and factories run by TNCs if they are agreeable to it. Ideally,they could possibly pay in part for the cost of the changeover. Again, TNCs could have their profits heavily subsidized. Such a monetary measure makes "turning green" truly viable in the commerical world.
Poor workers too could have their wages subsized though ideally the TNCs should pay the fair price. Their health, and safety would be monitored by powerful NGOs even though this should be job of government agencies (with genuine legal powers) in the Third World.
Another problem with the Third World notably in Africa is getting aid to the right people. Much of it has gone instead into the pockets of corrupt officials, and dictators. However, with financially empowered NGOs concerned with such issues would be able to fully fund new, and existing ways of avoiding this as far as is possible.
The arms-trade which has sold many weapons to the Third World where wars have been known to erupt could be curtailed by future democratic governments. With EBC this would be possible, and could lead to greater profits when such a huge business is "converted" into something more "ethical" (eg. the possible creation of special super non-lethal weapons to help maintain world peace mentioned in the TFE summary earlier on).
As can be seen here the Third World is a complex issue with no easy solutions. But with TFE so much more could be done which is positive, and progressive, and indeed, more in keeping with global justice.
Greater Equitable Income.Though not as appalling as the Third World a certain amount of poverty exists in the rich nations of the globe. With TFE there is always the finance available to genuine democratic governments, and NGOs to alleviate it. At the same time, there are a number of ideas which exist on paper, and in reality to deal with this. These include the basic re-occuring theme of people owning a fair share of the profits of a company (as well as possibly receiving a working wage). The Co-operative Society, and Binary Economics could be seen as instances of this kind of thinking. Because of their high ethical nature their creation would probably be aided with interest free loans, and indeed, new unearned money where capital may be difficult to come by.
In a genuine cooperative where money as profit, or wages is shared equally there is a possible problem. It could well result with having no capital to fund greater expansion. In TFE, it may be eligible for new unearned money as a business grant.
Anyway, apart from this there is a more radical approach to poverty alleviation. It is the Universal Basic Income, or UBI. This is intended for everyone as a human right irrespective of their means. With TFE such a policy would be easily implemented. Another similiar idea which exists in the developed world to varying degrees is income support for those who are under-employed. Here, TFE could top up the amount of money people were getting in this manner if necessary, and also give them a far greater range of courses, along with new jobs, or business oportunities.
Furthermore, pensions in the future could be funded properly with new money. Thus, those who have worked all their life for the economic betterment of the community would benefit.
A more astonishing aspect of TFE is that special businesses, and and/or NGOs could be created in the future. With increasingly automation jobs would become very difficult to find until a stage is reached where most of the population is jobless. In Binary Economics a large number of people could live off the profits generated.
However, in TFE new forms of "work" could also appear where, and when necessary which may be more akin to "leisure-type" activities. This would all be paid for by new unearned money rather like the Auto-Profit concept described earlier on with banks. This ofcourse would be a revolutionary step forward, as it would mean that in the future people would still have more than enough money to buy products, and services. Ultimately, this medium of exchange would be abolished, and everything would be free on demand.
Possible Positive Engagement with Banks, and Transnational Corporations (TNCs).Whether we like it, or not and as already indicated it is unlikely that TFE will become a reality in record time if we take a full moral stance against banks, and transnational corporations, or TNCs. They have become too powerful, and too entrenched in the present economic system.It is suggested here that we should ideally support the following two points:-
ii) TNCs could be legally "bribed" into converting their technologies into complex sustainable ones, and mass produce products, and services. This would hugely benefit the environment, and sustainability. In other words, Ethical Business Conversion, or EBC as already discussed.
Moreover, a more moral crusade against banks, and corporations is probably not going to inspire enough public support to bring about real change. Most of the populace in the rich countries have lost faith in politics, and politicians, and hence, feel genuinely disempowered.
Furthermore, to finance such a campaign would require much in the way of funding. Yet, if we work with banks, and corporations this should not be a problem when many of them realize that TFE is in their own interest. They could then influence rich governments to introduce it on an agreed time-scale.
It should though be stressed that Grant Generating Banks should as mentioned earlier be independent public authorities. Private commercial ones would still exist ofcourse.
To start the whole process rolling a proper professional website would need to be set up, and links to it should be sent to the powers that be in the rich "democratic" world. It should notably contain the following:-
2) News about the TFE campaign.
3) Commissioned papers by respected academics on the feasibility of the electronic controls over inflation. This could involve econometrics. However, all such data, and statistics are always suspect but it would give the campaigning TFE website greater credibility.
4) Letters of support from certain respected academics.
5)An interactive download which would present how electronic controls could work in the real business world.
6) Links to various respected websites on NGOs, university departments, and companies concerned with sustainability, new energy, finance, et al.
7) A Call to fully fund trials "in the field" by governments, and corporations for electronic systems over inflation. Improvements may well be necessary.
Legal safeguards should be put in place to prevent "too much" commercial expansion. This could be aided by special business "NGOs" which could use "compulsory purchase" orders to limit the power of certain TNCs. Yet, the latter would be allowed to expand greatly but in a way which takes full account of sustainability, and global justice.
Moreover, the Third World would benefit along with the TNCs. The reason being is that the former would receive genuine business help. If this leads to greater economic (but sustainable) growth the TNCs would have a new emerging market to sell their products, and services(which could be heavily subsidized by new unearned money to make it very profitable).
There are other aspects to all this but they are still subject to research, and development.
Non-Taxation Past, and Present.Transfinancial Economics, or TFE is a new paradigm in so far as it is a modernization of an old concept. Self-supporting communities have always existed with little, or no taxation.
Social Credit which was founded back in the early 20th Century by Clifford Douglas believed in new money, or rather what it termed debt-free money. It claims that if sufficient amounts of it were created there would be no serious inflation. The key point to understand about Social Credit is that its debt-free money does not appear to replace taxation and is thus limited. Furthermore, interest on loans would still exist.
A book with the misleading title of Public Finance Without Taxation by Ronald Burgess exists. It deals with Henry Georges economic reform. This involves the notion that a rent, or rather more accurately, a property tax on land could be levied to fund governmental programmes. In other words, it does involve a form of taxation which contradicts the title of the aforementioned book!
Interestingly, an advanced socialist system has been suggested in which everything is run by co-operatives. Since all the wealth would be fairly redistributed there would be no need for any taxation. However, in genuine utopian socialism there is no money. Instead all necessary activities are done out of service to the community.
Abba Lerner the founder of Functional Finance appears to have believed that savings could lead to a situation of lower taxes, or indeed, zero taxation. John Gelles came up with the same ideas independently, and is a prolific emailer on monetary reform, and related topics.
John DeSantis, in Baltimore USA had a vision of economic reform in which taxes would not exist. His ideas appear on a website, but as he himself admits they require improvement. Shauna Mckay has similiar notions with her ideal of the Perfect System. Xat.community org. is a LETS group, and believes in Non-Taxation, and has even made the claim that alternative currencies would ultimately replace legal tender!Also, an engineer called Theodore Thoren used mathematics to claim that zero taxation was possible.
Ofcourse, in times of emergency, and revolution governments have been forced to partly, or even fully finance their expenses via the printing of new unearned money. Examples include the American War of Indepedence, the French Revolution, the American Civil War, and the Russian Revolution.
Finally, to end our section on TFE there is a claim circulating on the internet that Benjamin Franklin spoke of Colonial Scrip which was a successful monetary currency that was actually free from taxation, and acted as the national medium of exchange. It could also be borrowed without interest. This financial arrangement occured just before the American War of Independence yet research has yet to confirm these claims.
Transfinancial Economics, or TFE does not pretend to be the ultimate panacea for all things social, economic, and political but it does offer a powerful new approach which could help to solve many problems. As such it needs to be taken seriously.
Some Key References.An exhaustive listing is not presented here.
Adams, Charles, For Good, and Evil; The Impact of Taxes on the Course of Civilization. Madison Books, 1999.
Bunzl, John. The Simultaneous Policy; An Insiders Guide to Save Humanity, and the Planet. New European Publications, 2OO1.
Hertz, Norena, The Silent Takeover; Global Capitalism, and the Death of Democracy. Heinemann, 2001.
Rowbotham, Michael, The Grip of Death; A Study of Modern Money, Debt Slavery, and Destructive Economics. Jon Carpenter,1998.
Sabine, B.E., A Short History of Taxation. Lexis Publishing n.d.
Stanlake & Grant, Introductory Economics, Longman, 1995
Zarlenga, The Lost Science of Money; The Mythology of Money..the Story of Power. American Monetary Institute, 2002.
this essay copyright © Robert Searle 2005-2007, all worldwide rights reserved.
page uploaded 7 August 2005, last updated 21 April 2007