Monetary reform in Britain
Monetary reform is the process of fundamentally changing policies regarding money. It can include changes to the money creation process, fractional-reserve banking, financial institutions, financing of the economy and Social Credit among other things.
C.H. Douglas and the Social Credit-movement
In the years around 1920 the British engineer C.H. Douglas developed a theory on banking and welfare distribution, a theory which he called "Social Credit", and which soon became the cornerstone of an international movement with the same name. However, Douglas himself warned against viewing the Social Credit solely as a scheme for monetary reform. Personally he preferred to describe it as "the policy of a philosophy" or, to be exact, the policy of "practical Christianity". This policy, linked to this philosophy, is all about dispersing economic and political power to individuals. As he once wrote, "Systems were made for men, and not men for systems, and the interest of man which is self-development, is above all systems, whether theological, political or economic."
Recent development and debate
Michael Rowbotham's The Grip of Death, published 1998, was an attack on the banking system as well as the politics of globalization, free trade and growth-oriented strategies based on these lines. The book was widely spread and got reviews in magazines such as The Ecologist, Resurgence, New Internationalist, The Tribune, The Tablet, Sustainable Economics, Permaculture Magazine, Food Magazine and Social Credit. Some of the British monetary reformers, such as Michael Rowbotham, is influenced by the Social Credit-movement.
The Money Reform Party was founded by Anne Belsey from Kent in 2005 and deregistered in 2014. Belsey stood for the MRP in the Bromley and Chislehurst by-election, 2006 and came last with 33 votes. She stood in Canterbury in 2010 and came last with 173 votes. Author Mark Braund recommended the MRP website "which includes a compelling explanation of the mechanics of money creation and its impact on society".
Positive Money is a monetary-reform organization founded in 2010. They publish reports about banking and monetary reform and have engaged heavily in the debate in recent years. They argue that the Bank of England should be the only true money-creating authority, which is very far from the practice today, as most money is created in the form of credit (loans) by the commercial banks.
- 2010 – Towards a Twenty-First Century Banking and Monetary System, Joint Submission to the Independent Commission on Banking, UK (Chair: Professor Sir John Vickers), with Ben Dyson, Tony Greenham, Josh Ryan-Collins, by the Centre for Banking, Finance and Sustainable Development, the new economics foundation, and Positive Money, submitted 19 November 2010 PDF
- For an example of the use of the term, see this contribution from Bilderberg.org
- C.H. Douglas. "The Policy of a Philosophy". Australian League of Rights. Archived from the original on 2007-09-04. Retrieved 2008-03-01.
- Douglas, C.H. (1974). Economic Democracy, Fifth Authorised Edition. Epsom, Surrey, England: Bloomfield Books. p. 18. ISBN 0-904656-06-3. Retrieved 2008-11-12.
- "Money Reform Party". Archived from the original on October 12, 2016.
- Frisby, Dominic (September 18, 2008). "The Money Reform Party". Frisby's Bulls And Bears. Retrieved April 16, 2017.
- "Money Reform Party". Open Electoral Commission. Retrieved April 16, 2017.
- "Election candidates so far for Canterbury and Whitstable". This is Kent. April 16, 2010. Retrieved April 16, 2017.
- "Money for nothing". The Observer. April 5, 2009. Retrieved April 16, 2017.
- Dyson, Ben Still unconvinced that banks create money? Ask the Governor of the Bank of England…