In this extract from Just Money: How Society Can Break the Despotic Power of Finance Ann Pettifor describes how orthodox economics and finance have promoted a profoundly inadequate account of money. Change is necessary and possible. But it will come only through a revolution in the general public’s understanding.
A recent article at Renewable Energy World took a look at “green banks”–financial institutions that use public funding to leverage private financing of clean energy. The Coalition for Green Capital has been working on developing such banks and recently hosted a “Green Bank Academy” in Washington DC. While definitely public-minded institutions, these banks seem to be capitalized by state grants, rather than by deposits of state receipts, as is the Bank of North Dakota. Still, while not technically public banks on the North Dakota model, they provide a good example of how public banks can target investments toward a particular industry that meets a variety of public needs–lower energy costs, cleaner air, and long-term protection from climate change. You can read the full interview here.
More city councillors are questioning why their municipalities are depositing city money in JPMorgan Chase after that bank was implicated in felonies ranging from rigging interest rates to mortgage fraud. But is it true that there is no viable alternative to big banks? If North Dakota–a small state, budget-wise–has its own bank, why not public banks for our biggest cities? Read about it here.