David Korten’s “Seven Points of Intervention”


David Korten has been writing excellent optimistic – and yet challenging and realistic – books on economic system reform for years.  His most recent book, published in August, 2010, is the 2nd Edition of Agenda for a New Economy: From Phantom Wealth to Real Wealth.  Chapter 13 of that book, “Seven Points of Intervention,” specifies specific strategies for bringing about system reform which is both life-affirming and biosphere-sustaining.  At the end of this note is a link to a fuller writeup of his points of intervention.

He introduces his seven points with this call:  Life or money: that is our choice.  The current Wall Street system serves only money.  Our task is to replace it with a New Economy system that serves life.

1.  Living-Wealth Indicators

The Goal: Replace financial indicators with indicators of human- and natural-systems health as the basis for evaluating economic performance.  We get what we measure, so let’s measure what we want.

2.  Living-Wealth Money System

The Goal: Redesign the money system to direct the flow of money to productive Main Street businesses rather than to Wall Street speculators.  Real resources follow the money, so design the financial system to put the money where it will produce the greatest living-wealth benefit.

3. Shared Prosperity

The Goal: Redistribute income and ownership to achieve a more equitable distribution of power and real wealth (food, shelter, clothing, work – productivity).  We all enjoy greater health, happiness, security, and social solidarity when wealth is equitably shared.

4. Living Enterprises

The Goal: Redefine the purpose of the enterprise from making money to serving community needs, and favor enterprise forms that support this purpose.

5. Real Markets / Real Democracy

The Goal: Free both the market and democracy from corporate domination by breaking up concentrations of economic power, getting big money out of politics, making corporations pay their own way, and reserving Bill of Rights protections for people.

6. Local Living Economies

The Goal: Create a planetary system of coherent, self-reliant local economies that function as dynamic, life-nurturing sub-systems of their local ecosystems.

7. Global Rules

The Goal: Create a system of global rules and institutions that support living-wealth indicators and money systems, shared prosperity, living enterprises, real democracy, and local living economies.

The link to a more complete summary of the above seven points is here:  Proposals for Change-D.Korten

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“Right Relationships” and Economic Systems


Here is an excellent book on the relationship between faith, values and economic systems:  Right Relationship: Building a Whole Earth Economy, by Peter G. Brown et al, 2009.  Developed by a team of Quaker scholars, it offers a holistic perspective on our current economic and political system and how a profound change in that system is required in the interest of both humanity and the biosphere.

This timely book is very readable and concise, yet gets right to the point.  I recommend it as a foundational work for those who wish to research this area and then advocate for change.  Several in our study-advocacy group have read – or are reading – it.

Here is my more complete presentation document on this excellent, challenging and yet inspiring book:

Right Relationship

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We Must Reform Our Economic System!


 

When one looks at the current recession, brought about by deregulation approved by both political parties and the subsequent financial speculation and unwise loans and mortgages, it soon becomes apparent that the very nature of our global economic system (especially as practiced in the USA) needs a complete examination leading to reform.  Our economic system as structured: 1) has been leading to ever more movement of wealth from the middle class to the top income layers of our society over the past three decades; 2) is built upon endless growth with little regard for the natural environment which sustains all life on earth; 3) encourages overconsumption of both food and other items for the sake of profit (as opposed to human well-being); and 4) has bled third world countries of natural resources, often with no real benefit to the people in those countries except for a very few at the top who have accumulated fortunes courtesy of our corporations, and commonly with the support (or at least a blind eye) of our government.

We must change the whole nature of our economic system, so that the “bottom line” is no longer profit (especially for the few at the top) but rather global human well-being and the healing of the biosphere.  That is what this blog is devoted to.

Please stay tuned!

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