There was a time in the United States when most of our financial institutions were local. Which essentially meant that local communities were able to create their own credit, or their own money, in response to their own needs. We still depended on banks, but it was a much more democratic process.— David Korten
The most unique David Korten quotes that may be undiscovered and unusual
If there is to be a human future, we must bring ourselves into balanced relationship with one another and the Earth.
To create a world in which life can flourish and prosper we must replace the values and institutions of capitalism with values and institutions that honor life, serve life's needs, and restore money to its proper role as servant. I believe we are in fact being called to take a step to a new level of species consciousness and function.
The professional study of economics has become ideological brainwashing.
It is a defense of the excesses of the capitalist system.
Wall Street sees a social fabric or social contract as inefficiencies, which need to be removed.
Corporate globalists and the corporate empires they serve may be at the cutting edge of technological innovation, but socially and environmentally they are relics of a bygone era of imperial colonial rule, elite privilege, and state-sanctioned plunder.
In the US, most progressives start to see the differences between internationalism and economic globalization.
More humane societies are usually smaller, like the Scandinavian countries and Holland, where it is much easier to reach consensus and cooperation.
Our defining gift as humans is our power to choose, including our power to choose our collective future. It is a gift that comes with a corresponding moral responsibility to use that power in ways that work to the benefit of all people and the whole of life.
Money is a mechanism for control.
Capitalism and the market are presented as synonymous, but they are not.
Capitalism is both the enemy of the market and democracy.
The current system is organized around financial values over life values.
We need to shift that locus of power down to the community level because the financial markets recognize only money and thereby only financial values.
As corporations gain in autonomous institutional power and be-come more detached from people and place, the human interest and the corporate interest increasingly diverge. It is almost as though we were being invaded by alien beings intent on colonizing our planet, reducing us to serfs, and then excluding as many of us as possible.
If you're living in the community and you own your local businesses and you're engaged in the local economy you should have a definite interest in the strength and health of your community, the caring relationships that bind people together.
An active propaganda machinery controlled bv the world's largest corporations constantly reassures us that consumerism is the path to happiness, governmental restraint of market excess is the cause our distress, and economic globalization is both a historical inevitability and a boon to the human species.
If you look internationally over the last 50 years there have been improvements in the third world, but in the last 20 years the reverse has happened, with debt crises and increased poverty.
As long as you have a system that is based on the rational that if you are making money you are thereby making a contribution to society, these financial rogue practices will continue.
An economic system can remain viable only so long as society has mechanisms to counter abuses of either state or market power and the erosion of the natural, social, and moral capital that such abuses commonly exacerbate.
I am in favor of increased communication and cooperation between countries, but it is more important that each country becomes responsible for its own actions, its own communities, its own economies, before starting to integrate in large regional or global supranational organizations.
There is a huge shift taking place in the global awareness in the last 5 years with strong views about globalization and the power structures of major corporations.
It will take some time before a politician will capture the imagination of the American people and have the vision and understanding to do what is necessary for a better future for the people of America and the world.
I think one of the most important skills of a local organizer of a local economy is an ability to put on a terrific street party.
Money is not wealth. Money is a claim on wealth.
So, there is enormous instability in the global economy with a shift of winners and losers.
Global competition is about winners and losers.
Capitalism is not about free competitive choices among people who are reasonably equal in their buying and selling of economic power, it is about concentrating capital, concentrating economic power in very few hands using that power to trash everyone who gets in their way.
It is interesting to note that the 200 richest people have more assets than the 2 billion poorest.
Europeans say they are proud of their social fabric, of strong rights for workers and the weak in society.
Moreover, statistics can be deceiving: the growth of jobs in the US in the 90s was due to many part-time jobs, with no benefits and generally low pay.
And each of these perspectives comes to the same conclusion, which is that our global economy is out of control and performing contrary to basic principles of market economics.
Our global economy is out of control and performing contrary to basic principles of market economics.
The proper goal of an economic democracy agenda is to replace the global suicide economy ruled by rapacious and unaccountable global corporations with a planetary system of local living economies comprised of human-scale enterprise rooted in the communities they serve and locally owned by the people whose wellbeing depends on them.
Living capital, which has the special capacity to continuously regenerate itself, is ultimately the source of all real wealth. To destroy it for money, a simple number with no intrinsic value, is an act of collective insanity - which makes capitalism a mental, as well as physical pathology.
As an economy measures performance in terms of the creation of money, people become a major source of inefficiency.
My own experience in the third world was that even if people started to make more money, the cost of living and housing increased often faster than the wages.
Money flows into the US, and inflates US assets, and allows the US to have a monstrous trade deficit. That means we are consuming more than we are producing.
We should be moving toward local currencies not global or European currencies.
If you look at the US economy over the last 15-20 years wages have been stagnating or even declining.
The EU will face problems similar to the US: an increasing gap between the citizens and decision makers in Brussels and a perceived or even real lack of democracy.
There are actually very few US politicians who have integrity and vision.
There is no visible sign that the current politicians in the US are willing to see the need for change.
When the institutions of money rule the world, it is perhaps inevitable that the interests of money will take precedence over the interests of people. What we are experiencing might best be described as a case of money colonizing life. To accept this absurd distortion of human institutions and purpose should be considered nothing less than an act of collective, suicidal insanity.
But in the past, US companies have been able to increase their profits through downsizing in the US, through colonizing other people's resources, and through the increase of globalization.
Not exclusively, but the bulk of our local economy should be covered by local currencies, which is more efficient than having global currencies which lose connection with reality in the markets, shops and communities of the people.
More and more surveys in the US are indicating a change in values taking place among consumers, who become more concerned about quality of life, food, health and the environment.
Capitalism has defeated communism. It is now well on its way to defeating democracy.
My claim is that we do not have a market economy, but a capitalist economy.
We can have democracy and a prosperous, just, and sustainable human future.
Or we can have corporate rule. We cannot have both.
In a world of increasing inequality, the legitimacy of institutions that give precedence to the property rights of "the Haves" over the human rights of "the Have Nots" is inevitably called into serious question.
But we can also take the radical view that the test of an economy has to do with the extent to which it is providing everybody with a decent means of living.