Author Archive

Over-financialisation – the Casino Metaphor

Jan 15, 2014 5 Comments
The casino metaphor has been widely used as a part-description of the phenomenon of over-financialisation. It's a handy pejorative tag but can it give us any real insights? This article by @GrahamJBarnes pursues the metaphor to extremes so that we can file & forget / get back to the football or possibly graduate to next level thinking.
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Co-Ops & Credit Unions – A Governance Crisis?

Nov 27, 2013 2 Comments
Just when the implications of 'over-professionalising' banking and allowing an overpaid clique of casino-managers to screw up the real economy are becoming clear to the masses, we are being encouraged to think we can't do without them. If this rearguard action succeeds, the opportunity for innovation - for example in the capital financing of energy projects - will be lost. By Graham Barnes.
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Designer Currencies and the Preferenced Domain

Nov 19, 2013 Comments Off on Designer Currencies and the Preferenced Domain
A Designer Currency can enhance local identity and spread awareness of local supply, but it can also go beyond that, helping to identify important gaps in local supply and forming an integral part of proactive local economic development. By Graham Barnes.
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Designer Currencies and Behaviour Change

Jul 26, 2013 2 Comments
This article by Graham Barnes explores the relationship between the values that are implicitly embedded in a currency and the type of explicit behaviour that that currency could promote.
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Transforming Finance: notes from the conference on 10th May 2013

May 24, 2013 Comments Off on Transforming Finance: notes from the conference on 10th May 2013
Graham Barnes attended the recent Transforming Finance event in London. Here are some of his recollections.
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Financing Renewable Energy Projects

Apr 01, 2013 1 Comment
Financing of renewable energy projects is hampered by two systemic economic effects - market 'externalities' that make them appear less attractive (versus fossil fuel development) than they should; and the effect of embedded interest in the cost of capital. Graham Barnes describes some creative methods for overcoming these hurdles.
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Money and Sustainability – The Missing Link: Review

Jan 31, 2013 1 Comment
So here we have it. The austerity versus Keynsian spending debate is about as useful as arguing whether the earth is flat or sitting on the back of a pile of turtles. Neither will provide sustainable interventions to our converging crises while the debt-based money system remains the only significant game in town. By Graham Barnes.
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Sustainable currency and the green economy: An Irish perspective

Oct 08, 2012 Comments Off on Sustainable currency and the green economy: An Irish perspective
While "green technology" is an important response to the convergent crises that Ireland and other nations face, it is important not to overlook two other important macroeconomic issues: our current dependence on debt-based money; and the need to rebuild and strengthen local economies. By Graham Barnes.
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The Lot of the Currency Designer

Jul 23, 2012 2 Comments
This paper was prepared by Graham Barnes for the International Social Transformation Conference in Split, Croatia, He argues that "once we realise that currency - nay, money in general - can be designed to fulfill or support specific objectives, it sets us free. Free from the constraints of the broken pseudo-science that is mainstream economics; free to recognise that not all transactions are of equal importance; and potentially free to redesign ourselves away from our existing pervasive elite monetary hegemony and reclaim the monetary commons."
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The Future of Money: Review

Jun 26, 2012 4 Comments
Published by Green Books, The Future of Money by James Robertson restates much of his thinking around monetary reform and brings it bang up to date in the context of the Euro crisis. It focuses a great deal on the arguments for governments reclaiming their right to issue money from the banks, and the enormous potential benefits to society of so doing. Highly recommended.
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Currency Resilience and Transition

May 21, 2012 Comments Off on Currency Resilience and Transition
I attended the recent Transition Networks one day conversation in London on 'Peak Money and Economic Resilience'. Prompted by the event, I have contributed some thoughts on the fundamental objectives of a local exchange currency - increasing both the proportion of trade that is locally-based, and overall liquidity - and on how these might best be achieved.
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The Affluent Society by J.K. Galbraith: Review

Mar 06, 2012 3 Comments
Reading The Affluent Society is a revitalising and empowering shot in the arm for anyone questioning in any way what JK calls the 'conventional wisdom'. The book, first written in 1958 and then reissued as a new edition in 1998 is an astonishing tour de force, debunking and deconstructing the tenets of the 'central tradition' of economics.
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The Challenge of Re-localisation

Feb 15, 2012 Comments Off on The Challenge of Re-localisation
Feasta's particular approach to sustainability economics is to focus attention on the inadequacies of underlying systems. The development of local economies suffers from two particular adverse systemic effects - the in-built transfer of wealth from those that need money to those that already have money via the servicing of debt; and the transfer of wealth from the locality to the centre as globalisation progressively centralises economies. Local currency developers need to develop strategies that mitigate these two effects or they will remain limited in size and influence.
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