In times past, the Review linked to the excellent columns of Devvy Kidd, author and Constitutional activist. She does again in her current column, posted on the opinion website, called “Got Bling?”

She notes that the recent Federal Reserve Board’s cut of interest rates will not really help the average American that much. With said average American drowning under personal and corporate debt, scrambling for extra money to keep poverty and starvation away from their door, they don’t understand the ins and outs of our monetary system. Prices for staples are rising, like in so many other countries, from bread to milk to oil and gasoline.

And with the recent rush on the English bank Northern Rock fresh in their minds, folks wonder if the same thing will also happen to them in the US.

As Ms. Kidd notes, hard times are coming. With the dollar still losing value against the Euro and the British Pound, costs for basic foodstuffs will continue to rise.

What to do? In the long run, it is up to us who know about Distributism to promote it in our neighborhoods. Explain it to all who will listen. Then get them to act on what they learn in their own neighborhoods. Change local policies that crush the small business and co-operative sectors, especially in taxes and regulations. Begin local farmer-consumer co-ops in your neighborhoods. Begin plans to introduce local currencies to keep local economies going, like what’s being done in the Berkshires of Massachusetts and in Ithaca, NY. Flood Congress with letters and calls to demand reduction of tax burdens on the majority.

In short, Distributism is the way out of our national dilemma that Ms. Kidd so aptly warns us of. Let’s get to work - and prayer - and clean up the mess. Bravo to you, Ms. Kidd.


Kevin Thursday, September 20, 2007 at 9:58:00 PM CDT  

I don't get it. If people are in debt, lower interest rates are exactly what they need. If they are charged less interest they have more money to put toward principal. What is wrong with lower interest rates?

John Médaille Friday, September 21, 2007 at 10:14:00 AM CDT  

Kevin, you are certainly correct to ask whether lower interest rates are good for debtors, and the obvious (but incomplete) answer is "yes."

However, all economic factors have multiple effects, so that one must ask further questions. Here are some other questions:

Will lowering the discount rate (which increases the money supply) lead to increased inflation?

Will it weaken the dollar, further contributing to inflation since a large percentage of what people buy comes from other countries?

At a time when the economy is mired in debt, is it really a good idea to encourage more debt?

The economy consists of a lot of moving parts, and an analysis which works on one part only will be incomplete.


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