Louis Even, who died in 1974, had spoken and written for 40 years on Social Credit. We have not finished reproducing his so clear, so logical, and so true teachings. We publish here an article that he wrote 40 years ago. Would that we could reprint them all! Louis Even's articles were a light and a discipline for the minds he guided in his lifetime. His words will always have the same effect until the end of time. They are immortal, like truth itself.
Social Credit, which was so brilliantly thought and presented by Louis Even, would be the answer to our money problems. It would bring about a fraternal society, not in the false way envisioned by the Socialists and Communists, but in a Christian, Catholic way, without taking anything away from personal freedom and responsibility. Through Social Credit, the pursuit of spiritual values would be accessible to all; private enterprise and private property would be eminently favoured by Social Credit. One can understand that one can be a great Catholic like Louis Even and, at the same, be a great Social Crediter.
by Louis Even
Everything must be ordered to its proper end. This means, in simple terms, that each thing must be put to the use it was made for. Otherwise, it is disorder.
If you were on a battlefield today, you would not be surprised to see tanks mowing down human lives. It would be horrible to witness, but you would have to admit that these machines are being used for the very purpose they were created for. The tank was made to spit out shells, not to bring people to Mass.
However, if you see, in a street of your town, cars heading straight for the pedestrians, chasing them even onto the sidewalks to run them down, you would find this spectacle even more revolting than that of the battlefield. Cars were not built for that purpose.
In a church, Mass is said and people gather to pray; this is the purpose for which it was built. If it was used to store hay, or to house transport trucks, this would certainly be turning it away from its proper end.
Turning something away from its proper end is a perversion. The more the thing is good, the more degrading and criminal the perversion is.
The money system is certainly, in itself, an excellent thing. It is, in itself, one of the most useful social inventions. It was introduced to facilitate economic relations among people. It is difficult to conceive our economic life, especially the one of today, without money. For example, iron ore is produced in Northern Quebec. However, the people who work there do not live on iron; they do not eat iron, do not clothe themselves with iron, do not nurse themselves with iron ore. They need other products, foodstuffs and other things, which cannot be produced in Northern Quebec. They cannot even think about barter to obtain these things: the companies that buy the iron ore do not till the fields and cannot give wheat nor vegetables in exchange for the ore. Thanks to the money system, everything is resolved. The mining producers receive money for their product. In their turn, they can buy the products they need, regardless of the products'place of origin, with the money they have received for their ore.
The same goes for all the other areas of economic life. Money is an instrument that is accepted and used by everyone. The money system is therefore an institution that is basically social by nature.
But, precisely, the perversion that has turned money away from its proper end has made it a weapon of control, more than a tool to serve. This perversion has vitiated all of economic life, Money today is imposed upon man as a god, not as a god of goodness, but as an exacting and tyrannical god which all our economic activities must serve.
Money has become the necessary condition and the purpose of every business, which should rather be conceived and oriented in view of serving human needs.
A field is tilled if it yields a big income. If the field produces only wheat without money attached to it, it is left in fallow.
Shoes are made if it is a paying proposition. If it isn't paying, even if there should still be people without shoes, the production of shoes is stopped. And as long as there is money "in it", even if all have shoes, production is continued.
The same hands, the same brains, the same entrepreneurs will shift from one production to another, from one business to another. If the first one is not profitable, and the second is: tractors today, artillery guns tomorrow; tonics today, poisoning liquor tomorrow, depending on the profits that each brings.
The worker, like his boss, is subjected to the service of this same tyrannical god. He goes where there is a wage, be it in home construction or in war industries. Assuredly it is his daily bread that he seeks. But he must seek his livelihood, to support his wife and his children, where money will be given to him at the end of the week for his work, regardless of the type of work he is asked to do – work of life or work of death. Can he really even worry about that when, most of the time, he does not even know what use will be made of the products of his work? The lumberjack in the forest, the chemist or worker in the paper mill, work there for the money they are paid; whether the paper produced is used for printing Lenten counsels or filthy publications, this does not worry them in any way. The worker's responsibility does not go further than the pay check.
We do not put the blame on the worker. He is but a slave condemned to serve the production which brings him money; otherwise, he will die of hunger along with his family.
Money, a tyrannical god This god does not only claim a place of supremacy in economic decisions. Like Moloch of the Ammonites or the Minotaur of the Greeks, it needs human victims. We can't keep count of its victims. Its behavior can halt all productive activity, paralyze the distribution of products, throw millions of human beings into starvation and privations of all kinds, amidst an abundance of products. It is precisely when these products accumulate in front of pressing needs that this tyrannical god seems to take the most malicious pleasure in punishing families. The hundreds of thousands of unemployed in Canada know of this through experience.. The power of money can hinder the best enterprises, even those of the apostles of the Gospel. Are the outstretched hands of our missionaries, and directors of chari-.. table organizations in our country, not the present-day proof?
It is a god with a formidable power, but also a god of discord, of divisions, of conflicts. What pits the one against the other, employer and employee, seller and buyer, landlord and tenant? What creates quarrels among couples? What disperses the members of families because the home is nothing more than a hovel or a couple of rooms? What makes up the subject of four-fifths of the cases in courts?
Well, it is this tyrannical god, this control over our lives, as much in the private sphere as in the public sphere, that the Social Crediters want to overthrow.
They do not want to suppress the money system, but rather to restore it to its role, its proper function, which is to serve, and not to oppress.
Like every idol, this mighty god is an artificial creation, a man-made god. Its artificial nature has been shown before the whole universe, in every civilized country; in September of 1939, when people saw money suddenly appear out of nowhere by the millions, by hundreds of millions, after ten years of money shortage everywhere. The stroke of what magic wand brought about this influx of money? The stroke of a declaration of war!
And not one single time, during the six years of war, was a government ever heard to declare: "Fighting will have to be stopped, as there is a lack of money." This never happened. Only the resources in men and materials mattered.
Overnight, the unemployed, who were left to die in their hardships, were now sought for to become soldiers or ammunition producers. The millions, the billions to pay, would come as fast as the multitude of killers and as the capacity to produce for the killing.
To come, after that, and talk of a problem of money, when there is no problem of products, is a farce that only suckers can swallow.
If money could come so quickly for the government, a wartime consumer, money can equally come as quickly for individuals, for peacetime consumers. There are no technical difficulties in this. It is a question of deciding. To ration money when the killing is stopped, at a time when there is a greater number of workers to produce things answering the normal needs of people and families, is a diabolical tyranny.
The Social Crediters stand up, and call upon all patriots to stand with them, against this tyranny. We refuse to accept crises that mass-produce poor people, and we refuse wars that mass-produce casualties.
Money must be regulated by the capacity to produce, instead of the capacity to produce being limited by money.
It is absurd to see cities or provinces obliged to forgo necessary and physicallyfeasible developments, under the pretext of lacking sufficient funds. It is absurd that public bodies, like city councils, must run
their population into debt towards those who produce nothing so as to obtain permission to employ workers and materials which are waiting.
And the financial system should exist to distribute goods. This consists in putting prices on the goods, then distributing the purchasing power to the individuals, who choose among the goods those which correspond to their needs. The prices and purchasing power must be equivalent. Otherwise, the distribution will not be properly made.
And, as everyone has needs, ev-eryone must have some purchasing power. The needs are attached to the human person, so the right to use goods must also be attached to the human person, from the cradle to the grave. Otherwise the goods are no longer at the service of needs.
Social Credit sees to it by a dividend given periodically to all, from birth to death.
The present way of distributing cannot guarantee everyone a share in the earthly goods because it'links the right to goods exclusively to employment. Not everybody is employed. Progress tends to diminish employment, while, at the same time, increasing production.
One does not feed oneself with employment, but with foodstuffs. One does not clothe oneself with employment, but with clothes. The right to goods should therefore be regulated according to the presence of goods offered to answer human needs, and not according to the presence of man in a productive enterprise.
If a product can be made without the presence of human labour, the right to the products must also come without the need of being employed.
To maintain the necessity of being employed in order to have the right to live, when the inventions, the machines, the improvement in the manufacturing process, have precisely as a goal the reduction of human labour, is to make progress a punishment instead of a liberation.
Social Credit offers the solution. No other adequate solution has ever been advanced.
The various social programs admit, by their very existence, that the distribution of the rights to the products is badly organized. But these fiscal arrangements do not correct this bad distribution; rather they allow it to continue, while at the same time trying to palliate its effects.
Social Credit, for its part, would correct this vice in distribution. It would distribute a global purchasing power corresponding to the global production; and, by a dividend to all, it would ensure each individual a share in this purchasing power, at least sufficient enough to obtain the essentials.
Social Credit is a different conception of the distribution of wealth. It is a conception that is more conformable to the human person and to progress in the means of production. However, it is a conception that must be made to gain acceptance, to make prevail, if one wants it to regulate economic life.
This does not at all presuppose a Social Credit political party to try to come to power. On the contrary, a party divides and closes doors and minds. Instead, a union must be realized around a vision which, translated into the concrete, would make the economy reach its proper end: the satisfaction of human needs.
The Social Credit economy is an economy that suits a more fraternal society, a better world.