Friday, November 7, 2014

News from the Network, Vol. 7, No. 44

Even the Devil backed down from this guy
Even given the “massacre” of the Democratic Party on Tuesday (of which less below), we don’t expect that anything will change with respect to fundamentals when the Republicans are in power.  There still aren’t any political leaders with any kind of realistic vision or even idea of returning power to the people through capital ownership.  Maybe that’s understandable.  Daniel Webster, who pointed out in 1820 that “Power naturally and necessarily follows property,” was a Whig, not a Democrat or a Republican.

What we need is less party politics and more getting power to the people.  To advance that, here’s what’s been happening in the Just Third Way movement this past week:

• Sales of CESJ’s latest “Paradigm Paper,” The Political Animal: Economic Justice and the Sovereignty of the Human Person, are doing well.  The Political Animal, like all CESJ publications, is available in bulk at substantial savings.  With the 20% discount applicable to bulk sales (i.e., ten or more copies of a single title), a full case of 50 is $400, plus shipping.  Enquire at “publications [at] cesj [dot] org” for details and cost of shipping bulk/wholesale orders.  Individual copies are available now on Amazon, and on Barnes and Noble. Please note: CESJ does not sell retail.

• This past Monday, the CESJ Core Group attended the Hubert Humphrey Fellows networking luncheon in Roslyn in Northern Virginia.  The event attracted a great many people from other countries, all of whom are highly placed at home.  The CESJ people, of course, sat at the “Economic Development” tables.  Perhaps it was just the general atmosphere, but no one in the CESJ Core Group heard a single negative among the many people with whom we spoke — not even in response to the short lecture about the proper use of a central bank in financing development, and the necessity of having an elastic, asset-backed reserve currency as one of the cornerstones of sustainable economic development.  A diplomat from Madagascar and an accountant from China were particularly interested in the money and credit position of the Just Third Way, and the diplomat mentioned that a good friend of his had just been appointed head of the country’s central bank, and should hear about the Just Third Way.

• A paper on the business cycle being prepared by CESJ’s Director of Research for The American Journal of Economics and Sociology has passed the initial review by the editorial boards of both the Journal and CESJ.  The reaction is that the paper represents a significant contribution to the understanding of binary economics.  The “heart” of the paper is in place, and it should be ready soon for pre-publication distribution among a select group.

Academic Excellence
• On Tuesday, the CESJ Core Group had an extended telephone conversation with Dr. David L. Schindler, Dean emeritus of the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family at the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC.  While the initial conversation was only supposed to be a relatively short introduction, it lasted for 2½ hours.  There were many points of congruence in our thinking, and Dr. Schindler expressed concern over many of the same issues as CESJ, e.g., understanding of the fundamentals of justice (even in law schools), academia’s focus on job training instead of education, the economic dependency of individuals and families on the State, and so on.  A number of areas of possible collaboration were identified.

Actual photo of Aristotle
• The Campaign for Distributive Justice concept is being expanded to include possible collaboration with the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy and the John Paul II Institute, and fundraising for potentially four publications and two to four events, including the CESJ/CCC booth at next year’s World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, preceded by at least one all-day event to present the fundamentals of the Just Third Way to start building a core of supporters and teachers.  While the proposed events are somewhat “Catholic” in character due to the anticipated initial venues and the presumption that the collaborating organizations will handle all logistics and administration, with CESJ providing the content, special emphasis will be put on bringing in participants from other faith traditions, especially Jews, Muslims, and Protestant leaders, nor will Buddhists, Hindus, or anyone else who shares an Aristotelian natural law orientation be excluded, especially if they have an academic affiliation.  A short brainstorming session resulted in a skeleton outline for an all-day event, with the morning devoted to sessions on the natural law, the principles of economic justice, and social justice, and the afternoon putting everything together in the application of the principles in the Just Third Way.  If successful, the program could be adapted as one of the initial Justice University courses for replication and dissemination over the internet.

No good deed goes unpunished
• A group called “Grassfire” is running a survey to find out what concerns people, presumably at the grass roots.  We are not either endorsing or condemning the effort, but the group claims that your opinions will be presented to members of Congress.  Most of the questions in the very short survey are not really consistent with the Just Third Way, e.g., we don’t want to abolish the IRS (just simplify the gazillion-page code and regs) or impeach Obama (waste of time and effort).  There is, however, space for comments . . . in which you can mention that what this (or any other country) needs is a Capital Homestead Act to return power to the people.  Get that, and most of the other problems referred to in the questions will solve themselves.  So, take the survey if the spirit moves you . . . but only if you mention the desperate need for a Capital Homestead Act.

• As of this morning, we have had visitors from 50 different countries and 43 states and provinces in the United States and Canada to this blog over the past two months. Most visitors are from the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia. The most popular postings this past week were “Aristotle on Private Property,” “Thomas Hobbes on Private Property,” “The Purpose of Production,” “Response to Professor Shakespeare, I: CESJ’s Position,” and “Halloween Horror Special: The Faith that Ate Reason.”

Those are the happenings for this week, at least those that we know about.  If you have an accomplishment that you think should be listed, send us a note about it at mgreaney [at] cesj [dot] org, and we’ll see that it gets into the next “issue.”  If you have a short (250-400 word) comment on a specific posting, please enter your comments in the blog — do not send them to us to post for you.  All comments are moderated, so we’ll see it before it goes up.



peter maurin said...

I can see my mentioning of schindler and the article I shared bore you fruit...
chris dorf

Michael D. Greaney said...

Yes. Too bad that morality and virtue are not a ledger, where one good deed balances evil.