Page 12 - Reflexions of African Bishops and Priests
P. 12

ever! The first duty of a sovereign government is to   by the banks is literally created out of nothing, with
        create and issue money according to the needs of     a simple stroke of a pen or by entering digits in com-
        the citizenry. The greatest betrayal in all of history   puters, then it is easy to understand that debts can be
        is the surrender of this primary function to private   cancelled in the same manner, without anyone being
        corporations, the chartered banks.                   penalized.
            Banks do not give money its value. Value origin-     Pope St. John Paul II wrote in his encyclical letter
        ates in a nation’s productive potential. The banker   Centesimus annus (n. 35.): “It is not right to demand
        produces  nothing  whatsoever.  All  he  does  is  cre-  or expect payment when the effect would be the im-
        ate figures, or numbers, that allow a nation to make   position of political choices leading to hunger and
        use of its own productive capacity; its own wealth.   despair for  entire  peoples. It cannot  be  expected
        Through a Central Bank, the government could just as   that the debts which have been contracted should
        easily create figures and numbers without resorting   be paid at the price of unbearable sacrifices. In such
        to private banks and reaping unpayable debts.        cases it is necessary to find — as in fact is partly
            As money is basically a social tool, Social Credit   happening — ways to lighten, defer, or even cancel
                                                             the debt, compatible with the fundamental right of
        philosophy holds that money must be issued by so-    peoples to subsistence and progress.”
        ciety for the common good and not by private bank-
        ers for profit. In Quadragesimo Anno, Pope Pius XI       Once debts have been written off, the only way
        states:                                              to  stop  countries  from  going  into  debt  again  is  for
                                                             them to create their own debt-free and interest-free
            “There  are  certain  categories  of goods for   money; for If you leave the banks the power to cre-
        which one  can  maintain  with  reason  that  they   ate money, debts will build up again. This we are re-
        must be reserved  to the collectivity  when they     minded by Sir Josiah Stamp, former head of the Bank
        come to confer such an economic power that it        of England:
        cannot, without danger to the common good, be            “Banking was conceived in iniquity and born in
        left to the care of private individuals.”            sin... Bankers own the earth. Take it away from them,
              The effects of compound interest               but leave them the power to create money, and, with
             Institutions such as the International Monetary   a flick of a pen, they will create enough money to
        Fund and the World Bank would like us to believe that   buy it back again... Take this great power away from
        they are helping countries in financial difficulties by   them, and all great fortunes like mine will disappear,
        the loans they grant. Because of the interest they are   and they ought to disappear, for then this would be a
        charged, these countries are impoverished further.   better and happier world to live in... But, if you want
        Here are some striking examples:                     to continue to be the slaves of the bankers and pay
            During a ten year span, from 1980 to 1990, Latin   the cost of your own slavery, then let bankers con-
                                                             tinue to create money and control credit.”
        American countries paid $418 billion in interest on
        original loans amounting to $80 billion... and they still        The Goal of Economics:
        owed the capital even though they paid it back more        The Satisfaction of Human Needs
        than five times over!                                    The social doctrine of the Church rests on a fun-
            According to the Jubilee 2000 Coalition, for every   damental principle, the primacy of the human person:
        dollar flowing as aid to poor countries each year,   “The Church’s teaching on social matters has truth
        $8 are paid back as interest on their debt. It is such   as its guide, justice as its end, and love as its driving
        examples  that  have  lead  Saint  Leo  to  write:  “The   force… the cardinal point of this teaching is that in-
        avarice that claims to do its neighbour a good turn   dividual men are necessarily the foundation, cause,
        while it deceives  him  is unjust and  insolent...  He   and end of all social institutions.” (John XXIII, encyc-
        who, among the other rules of a pious conduct, will   lical letter Mater et Magistra, May 15, 1961.)
        not have lent his money at usury, will enjoy eter-       The aim of both the economic and financial
        nal rest... whereas he who gets richer to the detri-  systems is the service of man, according to Church
        ment of others deserves, in return, eternal damna-   teaching.  The  economy of a  nation  is required  to
        tion.” Saint John Chrysostom taught that: “Nothing   ensure the satisfaction of human needs. Pope Pius
        is more shameful nor cruel than usury.”              XI, in Quadragesimo Anno, further clarified the ob-
                   Debts must be cancelled                   jectives of an economic system:
            Any sensible person will realize that it is crim-    “For  then  only  will  the  economic  and  social
        inal to require nations to continue to pay interest on   organism be soundly established  and attain  its
        debts that have already been paid several times. We   end when it secures for all and each those goods
        can see now why the Church condemns usury (lend-     which the wealth  and resources of nature,  tech-
        ing money at interest) and calls for the cancellation   nical achievement, and the social organization of
        of debts. When you understand that the money lent    economic affairs can give.

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