The American Monetary Institute has been teaching people about money for many years, and just completed it’s 13th annual conference. Featured below is a presentation by Mark S. Pash who says “The solution is freeing up money.” Pash stresses Americans on both “sides” of the ideological spectrum—right-leaning and left-leaning—must compromise a little to implement what he sees as the answer to our national money woes.
By Mark Anderson
CHICAGO, Ill.—At the American Monetary Institute’s (AMI) 13th annual Chicago conference, author Mark S. Pash shared some particularly intriguing insights from his latest book, Creating a 21st Century Win-Win Economy, which seeks to bridge the left-right divide and offer key monetary-reform proposals that are acceptable to a broad cross-section of the populace—and to a fractured Congress. Pash stressed that “marketing” monetary reform is key to its success in the conclusion of his hour-long talk at University Center downtown.
Pash’s presentation was part of a Sept. 14-17 lecture series that served as a tribute to late AMI founder Stephen Zarlenga, the respected author of The Lost Science of Money, who passed away recently at his home near Chicago. Zarlenga’s lengthy book defines money as not needing a gold standard and says that, as a function of the law, money should not be privately created at interest.
Pash’s core message was that a specific species of monetary reform can solve the riddle of providing incomes in an age of increasing robotics and automation. He emphasized the robotic age is with us in force, even to the extent of replacing Mexican farmers. Furthermore, a sophisticated robot popularly known as “Baxter” works “for $4 an hour without vacations,” Pash said, even while robotized short-order cooks are coming on board, along with self-driving vehicles and several other automated systems that displace human labor.
And while an Adidas sports-wear plant in China employs around 1,000 people, a similar plant in Germany that’s automated has only about 160 human employees. A clear upside is that robots will eventually replace “sweatshop” workers who are stuck in wage-slave jobs and suffer abuse under poor, often dangerous working conditions and long hours.
So, what to do?
“The solution is freeing up money,” Pash explained, utilizing a modified basic-income model that would differ from the Universal Basic Income proposals that have been floated overseas and are under consideration in Canada. Since money is cheap to make and distribute, a variety of channels would be utilized under Pash’s vision to get money for consumer purchasing power, business startups, and other purposes into the hands of the populace to supplement whatever work-related income they have.
Here, Pash’s outline bears some resemblance to “social credit,” a set of policy proposals born 100 years ago, that recognize the inherent shortfall of purchasing power compared to the accumulation of prices and debts in each production cycle. As Pash told conference attendees—roughly in line with social-credit solutions—the key goal is to “decouple jobs from money” to some extent, and to issue new interest-free money, not money borrowed at interest, to society. This would enable the population to buy products stemming from automation while progress would no longer equal more debt. Increased leisure time for personal development would be another dividend.
“We’d reduce the work week because the robots are going to do the work”—at least the most menial work—Pash stated, while stressing that unless such monetary adjustments are made to make room for cost-saving and labor-relieving automation yet still maintain human incomes—while reducing and redirecting the power of the banks and reorienting the workforce—displaced human populations may resort to massive uprisings that would likely be quelled by force.
Pash explained that banks would be denied their current power of usurious money creation and would be limited to providing essential services, like securing deposits from the public that to some extent would be used to make loans, thus eliminating the current practice of “fractional reserve banking” by which banks make virtually fictitious “loans” far in excess of the cash reserves physically in their vaults.
Consequently, banks would become part of a proposed money-distribution network involving direct government spending (such as on improved and cheaper infrastructure, education, and health care), loaning money into the economy at very low rates (or perhaps only at a cost of one-time fees), and investing money into the economy, among other approaches.
This diversity of distribution, he said, “controls inflation” and wouldn’t solely involve government spending. “Otherwise, Congress won’t pass it,” he explained.
Pash stressed the importance of those who are politically to the “left” scooting a little to the right and vice versa in order to unify behind beneficial solutions for all.
Notably, the introduction to Pash’s book envisions a future scenario where, “The Trump administration pushed through complete monetary reform eliminating the creation of debt money by the banks and substantially increasing the distribution systems of newly created money.”
The banks, which Pash called “the most powerful non-military institutions in the world,” would come to see that they, too, could benefit under this new monetary paradigm, since in Pash’s future scenario the banking industry would “boom with all the new deposits and loans they provided the public without the worry of periodic collapses.” He also predicts a 24-hour work week for the average worker with four to six weeks of annual vacation and personal time.
The imperative here, Pash summarized, is to correct “the macroeconomic philosophy” of the richest 1%, “so that they will use their influence correctly, to create a win-win economy.”
Pash, a former congressional candidate, grew up working in family operations in the manufacturing and retail sectors. He is a personal financial advisor with two business degrees, a UCLA bachelor’s and a USC master’s. See more at cpe.us.com.
AMI has long backed the NEED Act, HR 2990, first introduced by former Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) in 2011 but never passed into law. While calling for nationalizing the Federal Reserve and spending considerable new money on infrastructure, the bill contains some of the elements of Pash’s proposals—which are more multi-faceted than The NEED Act and are among the latest ideas that AMI has heard.
Mark Anderson is a longtime newsman now working as the roving editor for AFP. Email him at [email protected]