Book review

It’s the Economy – so what?

A discourse on debt & democracy

by Ron Andrews, 2006 Greenspur Enterprise, P O Box 10406 Birmingham B45 £7.50

The emphasis in this book is on the destructive effect of debt, as magnified by usury – taken in its original meaning, of all charging of interest on loans of money; and on what can be done about it.

The ‘usurious moneylending now practised worldwide by banks and their financial institutions’ is identified as the source of the bulk of this growing mountain of debt, and the fact that banks create the money they loan, effectively ‘out of thin air’, is noted, but not given the importance I believe it deserves, instead concentrating on the resulting interest charges.

A wide range of related issues is addressed, including the growing levels of inequality of wealth and the influence of banks and commerce on government and the media, promoting the ‘need to grow’, with its disastrous effect on society and the ecosystem, which results from this usurious debt-money system.

In offering solutions, Ron first notes that ‘There are already a number of instances where government has been conducted quite successfully without the disruptive intrusion of usury’, instancing the experience of Guernsey in its recovery from desperate poverty in the early 19th century, when it started to fund its government spending by creating its own supply of currency notes.

He notes the efforts of MPs to promote the attention of Parliament, through Early Day Motions (EDMs), to the need for the State to take back from the private banks the right to create our money, and the need for it to then be spent into circulation, free of interest-bearing debt; and their failure, so far, to overcome the powerful propaganda of the vested interests maintaining the present system.

He believes that if the UK government were ‘to mint, print and issue its own currency’, this ‘would only solve part of our economic problems.’ This is clearly so, but his suggestion that ‘it would be essential to banish the practice of usury from the economy entirely’ overstates the case. While he sees the need to end the banks’ creation of debt-money, I believe that this, in conjunction with the government’s action in spending the needed money into circulation, would in itself quite quickly eliminate nearly all debts, and so reduce the remaining problem of usury to a matter of minor importance.

Noting that ‘money is power’, he lists some of the unacceptable results before moving to advocate cooperatives as a move away from corporate psychopathy, and reform of parliament to make it more truly democratic, by having all MPs elected as Independents with indefinite tenure, but subject to ‘Recall to Account’ if this is called for by a specified proportion of constituents.

He ends with a ‘Brief Bibliography’ listing just seven books.

This book should provide a lot of ‘food for thought’, at modest cost, to people new to the idea of the money system being the underlying cause of so many of today’s major problems; and its ‘Brief Bibliography’ should then, hopefully, lead on to further research.

Brian Leslie