Friday, March 15, 2024

News from the Network, Vol. 17, No. 11

It is depressing to see how strong a hold discredited economic theories have on today’s global and national economies.  All of the news items this week wouldn’t even be on the radar if the so-called experts had sound principles and a workable paradigm, as found in the Economic Democracy Act:

Yeah, this works for about a day.


• Is Retirement Stupid?  A “conservative pundit” has declared that “retirement is stupid” and we should all work until we drop in our tracks.  Well, we agree the concept of retirement needs to be reconsidered, but “stupid”?  And, sad to say, the “pundit” assumes as a given the only way for most people to gain an adequate and secure income (don’t laugh) is through the wage and welfare system . . . at a time when the value of labor relative to advancing technology is diminishing rapidly.  The real answer, of course, is not to have people work until they die in jobs that were created only to get them income and fuel inflation, but to adopt the Economic Democracy Act so that people can gain income from capital ownership and spend their time doing real work: becoming more fully human and helping themselves and others do so.

Walter Reuther


• Making the Same Mistake.  Depending on your point of view, it can be a good or bad thing for other countries to follow the United States.  Of course, that’s never a blanket thing, but depends on what they’re following.  Japan went full tilt and became a great success economically . . . but then also made the same economic mistakes, such as giving in to the myth of the wage and welfare system as the only way people can gain legitimate income.  Had they listened to another possibility as suggested by U.S. labor statesman Walter Reuther, things might be a lot different — and a lot better — for everyone.  As he said in his testimony before the Joint Economic Committee of Congress, February 20, 1967, “The breakdown in collective bargaining in recent years is due to the difficulty of labor and management trying to equate the relative equity of the worker and the stockholder and the consumer in advance of the facts….  If the workers get too much, then the argument is that that triggers inflationary pressures, and the counter argument is that if they don’t get their equity, then we have a recession because of inadequate purchasing power. We believe this approach (progress sharing) is a rational approach because you cooperate in creating the abundance that makes the progress possible, and then you share that progress after the fact, and not before the fact.  Profit sharing would resolve the conflict between management apprehensions and worker expectations on the basis of solid economic facts as they materialize rather than on the basis of speculation as to what the future might hold…. If the workers had definite assurance of equitable shares in the profits of the corporations that employ them, they would see less need to seek an equitable balance between their gains and soaring profits through augmented increases in basic wage rates. This would be a desirable result from the standpoint of stabilization policy because profit sharing does not increase costs. Since profits are a residual, after all costs have been met, and since their size is not determinable until after customers have paid the prices charged for the firm’s products, profit sharing as such cannot be said to have any inflationary impact upon costs and prices…. Profit sharing in the form of stock distributions to workers would help to democratize the ownership of America’s vast corporate wealth.   This is the whole idea behind the Economic Democracy Act, that Japan, the U.S., and all other countries should consider adopting.


Jerome Powell

• Fed Chairman Powell Strikes Again! . . . and it’s not pretty.  According to Jerome Powell, the cost of insurance is the problem causing inflation, not the habit of the Federal Reserve groveling to the federal government and printing up massive amounts of funny money backed only with government debt.  As Powell says, “Insurance of various different kinds — housing insurance, but also automobile insurance, and things like that—that’s been a significant source of inflation over the last few years.”  Insurance is not the problem, however, but part of the solution.  A major barrier to extending access to meaningful capital ownership among the poor and middle class is the collateral that lenders require from borrowers to protect against losses from defaulted loans. This creates a “Catch-22” situation where “you need money to make money” — new money and credit for growing the economy and creating new capital owners is virtually inaccessible to those who do not already have assets to serve as collateral.  As a substitute for traditional collateral requirements, Congress and the Federal Reserve could encourage under the Economic Democracy Act the establishment of commercial loan default insurance and reinsurance pools (like FHA mortgage insurance), funded by the risk premium portion of service charges. In contrast to the handling of the savings and loan crisis, the full faith and credit of the Federal Government should not stand behind these bank loans or insurers of capital credit in the event of default by companies issuing expanded ownership shares.  Capital credit insurance and reinsurance is a key component of the Economic Democracy Act.

• Greater Reset “Book Trailers”.  We have produced two ninety-second “Book Trailers” for distribution (by whoever wants to distribute them), essentially minute and a half commercials for The Greater Reset.  There are two versions of the videos, one for “general audiences” and the other for “Catholic audiences”.  Take your pick.

• The Greater Reset.  CESJ’s new book by members of CESJ’s core group, The Greater Reset: Reclaiming Personal Sovereignty Under Natural Law is, of course, available from the publisher, TAN Books, an imprint of Saint Benedict Press, and has already gotten a top review on that website.  It can also be obtained from Barnes and Noble, as well as Amazon, or by special order from your local “bricks and mortar” bookstore.  The Greater Reset is the only book of which we’re aware on “the Great Reset” that presents an alternative instead of simply warning of the dangers inherent in a proposal that is contrary to natural law.  It describes reality, rather than a Keynesian fantasy world.  Please note that The Greater Reset is NOT a CESJ publication as such, and enquiries about quantity discounts and wholesale orders for resale must be sent to the publisher, Saint Benedict Press, NOT to CESJ.

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 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 over 155,000 total views.  The latest Sensus Fidelium video is “The Five Levers of Change.”  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 persons place in society.

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 well see that it gets into the next “issue.”  Due to imprudent and intemperate language on the part of some commentators, we removed temptation and disabled comments.