Yesterday, at the suggestion of Mr. Chris O'Connor, Financial Secretary of the local division of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, we sent out a letter via e-mail to each member of Dáil Éireann and Seanad Éireann (the House of Deputies and the Senate of Ireland, respectively). As of this posting, we've gotten 9 responses, one even being from the Taoiseach, or Prime Minister, Mr. Brian Cowen. We don't know if it will lead to anything, but at least the effort has the potential to inform the leadership of a country that an alternative exists to the traditional reliance on bankrupt and bankrupting Keynesian solutions. Today we followed up with a press release to a number of newspapers in Ireland, as well as some Irish American publications. If you are in Éire, you might want to send your own note to your Deputy and Senator asking him or her to look into Capital Homesteading as a serious alternative to current attempts to address the situation. If you're in the United States or another country, please feel free to adapt the text to your particular situation, and send something to your own representative.
Dear Sir/Madam (we inserted the actual names):
The world financial disaster has thrown into chaos every economy across the face of the globe. As serious as the situation is, however, this crisis presents a unique opportunity to explore new economic ideas, sound policies and practical applications that will allow the people of Ireland to grow their economy and attain a more just, prosperous and sustainable future for themselves and their families.
I am writing you as a concerned citizen of the United States of America and President of the Center for Economic and Social Justice (CESJ), based outside of Washington, D.C. Founded in 1984, CESJ is a non-partisan, non-profit think tank that disseminates concepts and applications for universalizing citizen and worker access to ownership of productive assets. Information on CESJ's concepts, achievements and global network is provided on our web site at www.cesj.org.
Our scholars have been following the housing, pension and credit crises in Ireland, which share the same institutional roots as the economic crises in the U.S. As you know, today's economic collapse cannot be fixed by employing the same tired tools and methods that brought about the crisis in the first place. Only an economic program based firmly on common sense, with principles that respect the dignity and promote the empowerment of each and every human person, can succeed in turning this situation around.
Because of your responsibilities as a policymaker and decision-maker, we wish to bring to your attention an innovative approach called "Capital Homesteading." What is Capital Homesteading?
- A system that allows low-income citizens to attain ownership of their homes.
- A system that allows citizens to become shareholders in corporations and owners of other businesses and enterprises with real assets and income.
- A system that delivers justice and hope to those most affected by the financial crisis.
- A system that grows the economy over the long-term, but offers some immediate solutions to the current crisis.
Capital Homesteading is based on the principle that every human being has a natural and equal right to the legal and institutional means to acquire and possess capital assets sufficient to provide an adequate and secure income. A policy summary of Capital Homesteading is available at: http://www.cesj.org/homestead/summary-cha.htm. A more complete proposed blueprint for turning an economy around can be accessed at: http://www.cesj.org/homestead/capitalhomesteading.pdf
One practical application that may be of immediate interest to you addresses the housing and credit crisis. You can access this proposal at: http://www.cesj.org/homestead/strategies/national/homeequitycorp.htm. We hope that every member of Dáil Éireann and Seanad Éireann, as well as all members of the government and everyone interested in the welfare of the citizens of Ireland will consider Capital Homesteading and its related proposals.
If you have any questions or if CESJ can assist you in these matters, please feel free to contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 703-243-5155.
Norman G. Kurland, President
Center for Economic and Social Justice