Most of the world seems to be spinning its wheels trying to figure out how to turn the old abnormal into the new normal, when the pandemic has revealed the cracks in the system that prevent the new normal from being any better than the old abnormal. . . .
• Mel Rosenblatt. We are saddened to report the death this past week of Melvin H. Rosenblatt, past president of Mid South Building Supply, Inc., one of the premier worker-owned companies in the U.S. As one of the prime movers behind the effort for Mid South to adopt an Employee Stock Ownership Plan, it is fair to say that it probably would not have happened without him. The hundreds of Participants and thousands of customers of Mid South owe him a great debt of gratitude.
• Rethinking Retirement. With the pandemic, many people have been forced to rethink their position on traditional retirement planning, and even the concept of retirement itself. The pandemic exposed the glaring fact that an economy can continue to function, even flourish (at least from a certain perspective) even after a large number of people have been forced to cut back on their labor inputs. At the same time, the number of ultra-wealthy people has increased by (relative) leaps and bounds. This strongly suggests that what Louis Kelso claimed more than half a century ago is absolutely true: that human labor is being removed from the production process at an increasing rate, and that ownership income has become far more important than labor income. So what is the solution? Turn as many as possible of the people into capital owners, so that everyone benefits directly from the productive capacity of capital instruments, rather than indirectly as wage workers filling unnecessary jobs or welfare recipients getting redistributed wealth. This can be done — and done now with a few essential changes in the system — through the Economic Democracy Act.
• Revenue Whammy. The new corporate tax proposals help to underscore a paradox within the current past savings paradigm. There can be no income (or consumption) for anyone if nothing is produced, and corporations produce the bulk of marketable goods and services in the United States. At the same time, there can be no production or redistribution if nothing is produced, either. Increasing the corporate tax rate is a disincentive to produce, so tax policy is — at least within the past savings paradigm — a tightrope walk between encouraging production to have enough to redistribute or tax for government expenditures, and discouraging production by redistributing or taxing it. Ironically, this is only a problem when an economy is trapped within the past savings paradigm and is locked into the labor theory of value. Given those two circumstances, the idea that all citizens should own capital as well as labor so that they can always be productive is so alien as to seem nonsense, but once the basic assumptions of economic personalism are understood, it is difficult to see how anyone could oppose them. If capital ownership were widespread, and every owner had the full rights of ownership (such as the full stream of income attributable to that ownership), there would be no justification for the vast bulk of government expenditures, and thus for increased taxation.
• Economic Personalism Landing Page. A landing page for CESJ’s latest publication, Economic Personalism: Property, Power and Justice for Every Person, has been created and can be accessed by clicking on this link. Everyone is encouraged to visit the page and send the link out to their networks.
• Economic Personalism. When you purchase a copy of Economic Personalism: Property, Power and Justice for Every Person, be sure you post a review after you’ve read it. It is available on both Amazon and Barnes and Noble at the cover price of $10 per copy. You can also download the free copy in .pdf available from the CESJ website. If you’d like to order in bulk (i.e., ten or more copies) at the wholesale price, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for details. CESJ members get a $2 rebate per copy on submission of proof of purchase. Wholesale case lots of 52 copies are available at $350, plus shipping (whole case lots ONLY). Prices are in U.S. dollars.
• Sensus Fidelium Videos, Update. CESJ’s series of videos for Sensus Fidelium are doing very well, with nearly 150,000 views in total. The latest available Sensus Fidelium video is “Seeking the Good.” The video is part of the series on the book, Economic Personalism. The latest completed series on “the Great Reset” can be found on the “Playlist” for the series. The previous series of sixteen videos on socialism is available by clicking on the link: “Socialism, Modernism, and the New Age,” along with some book reviews and other selected topics. For “interfaith” presentations to a Catholic audience they’ve proved to be popular, edging up to 150,000 views to date. They aren’t really “Just Third Way videos,” but they do incorporate a Just Third Way perspective. You can access the playlist for the entire series The point of the videos is to explain how socialism and socialist assumptions got such a stranglehold on the understanding of the role of the State and thus the interpretation of Catholic social teaching, and even the way non-Catholics and even non-Christians understand the roles of Church, State, and Family, and the human person’s place in society.
|Well, maybe a little miffed once in a while . . .
• Shop online and support CESJ’s work! Did you know that by making your purchases through the Amazon Smile program, Amazon will make a contribution to CESJ? Here’s how: First, go to https://smile.amazon.com/. Next, sign in to your Amazon account. (If you don’t have an account with Amazon, you can create one by clicking on the tiny little link below the “Sign in using our secure server” button.) Once you have signed into your account, you need to select CESJ as your charity — and you have to be careful to do it exactly this way: in the space provided for “Or select your own charitable organization” type “Center for Economic and Social Justice Arlington.” If you type anything else, you will either get no results or more than you want to sift through. Once you’ve typed (or copied and pasted) “Center for Economic and Social Justice Arlington” into the space provided, hit “Select” — and you will be taken to the Amazon shopping site, all ready to go.
|What happens when you don't read this blog.
• Blog Readership. We have had visitors from 18 different countries and 34 states and provinces in the United States and Canada to this blog over the past week. Most visitors are from the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, India and Switzerland. The most popular postings this past week in descending order were “News from the Network, Vol. 14, No. 13,” “JTW Podcast: Robert Ashford on Binary Economics,” “Financing Future Growth,” “Property, Power and Production,” and “The Demands of Human Dignity.”
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.” Due to imprudent language on the part of some commentators, we removed temptation and disabled comments.