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The COVID-19 pandemic: when confidence reaches its lowest level

on Friday, 01 May 2020. Posted in Societal debates

Geoffrrey Dobbs, a Britsh Social Crediter who personally knew Clifford Hugh Douglas, reminds us of this basic truth: no economic system can function without confidence, and we will see that this corresponds exactly to what is currently happening with the coronavirus pandemic and the ensuing confinement. In his book titled What is Social Credit?, Geoffrey Dobbs wrote:

“The social credit (without capital letters) is the name of something which exists in all societies but which never had a name before because it was taken for granted. We become aware of it only as we lose it.

« Credit is another word for ‘faith’ or ‘confidence’, so we can also call it the faith or confidence which binds any society together — the mutual trust or belief in each other without which fear is substituted for trust as the ‘cement’ of society... Though no society can exist without some social credit, it is at its maximum where the Christian religion is practised, and at its minimum where it is denied and derided.

In the pandemic, most activities are prohibited. Shops and schools are closed and people are confined in their homes. It can be said that mutual trust has reached its lowest level. Society is paralyzed, people live in anxiety and fear that they might catch the virus. Trust is eroded. Until recently, we took all types of activities for granted, such as mobility, free association, and Mass. All have been taken away from us.

In paragraph 32 of his encyclical Caritas in Veritate, Pope Benedict XVI takes up the same notion of trust explained previously by Dobbs, but using the words “social capital” instead of “social credit”, when he speaks of

“the progressive erosion of ‘social capital’, that is to say, the network of the relationships of trust, dependability, and respect for rules, all of which are indispensable for any form of civil coexistence...This calls for a new and deeper reflection on the meaning of economics and of its finalities” (n. 32).

Mr. Dobbs continues:

“The social credit is thus a result, or practical expression, of real Christianity in society, one of its most recognisable fruits; and it is the aim and policy of social crediters to increase it, and to strive to prevent its decrease. There are innumerable commonplace examples of it which we take for granted every day of our lives. How can we live in any sort of peace or comfort if we cannot trust our neighbours? How could we use the roads if we could not trust others to observe the rules of the road? (And what happens when they don’t!)

“What would be the use of growing anything in gardens, farms, or nurseries if other people would grab it? How could any economic activity go forward — whether producing, selling, or buying — if people cannot, in general, rely upon honesty and fair dealing? And what happens when the concept of the Christian marriage, and the Christian family and upbringing, is abandoned? We see, do we not? — that Christianity is something real with desperately vital practical consequences, and by no means a mere set of opinions which are ‘optional’ for those to whom they happen to appeal.”

One could add that without this respect of the social credit, and of the laws ruling society, social life would become impossible since no one could be trusted even if police patrolled every street corner.

“So now at last I have come to the question of money, which is what some people think that Social Credit is all about; but it isn’t! Social Credit is an attempt to apply Christianity in social affairs; but if money stands in the way, then we, and every Christian must concern ourselves with the nature of money, and just why it stands in the way, as it surely does. “There is a dire need for more people to look deeply into the operation of our monetary system, though that is not everyone’s job. But when the consequences are so desperate, everyone can at least grasp the outline of what is wrong, and could be put right, which will enable them to act accordingly...”

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