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Duties of Citizen and Community

 
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Jack Sadie



Joined: 12 Jul 2012
Posts: 9
Location: HARROW UK

PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 4:29 pm    Post subject: Duties of Citizen and Community Reply with quote

Can someone kindly remind me of all these duties which I once thought I had learned "by heart", early during Part 1 Economics in about 1964.

When I now come to attempt to recall them I find myself rather seriously embarrassed ! !

Is it significant that (as a terminally ill octogenarian) I do recall the community's duty to
"look after those unable to look after themselves" ?
Perhaps after all you do not need to bother with this facetious question.
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Brian Chance



Joined: 09 Nov 2008
Posts: 115
Location: Croydon Surrey U.K.

PostPosted: Mon Jan 26, 2015 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A good summary of the duties of a community is given in the conclusion to the contribution by Mr Ian Mason at the United Nations General Assembly on Harmony With Nature to commemorate International Mother Earth Day in April 2013.* He made three proposals.

1) ”The real aim of economics is to establish justice and equity for the welfare of humanity and of the human relationship with Mother Earth and to make it possible for all human beings to flourish without harm to anything else. This is what is meant by economics with justice.”

2) “To recognise the duty of care for Nature and for each other as central to ethical economics and ethical ownership of land and environment. This can be given practical effect through recognising and enforcing rights for Nature just as as we recognise and enforce human rights”

3) “To recognise that all ownership of land……………is a privilege which can only be sustained if attendant duties are observed and if necessary enforced. These include duties to keep land in good condition and look after it well; to leave land in as good or better condition than we find it; and also to recompense surrounding communities for the benefit that private occupation of land confers on some and for that reason removes from others.
This could be accomplished, at least in part, by collecting an annual levy, based on the annual value a community puts on any particular piece of land and its usefulness. That value is readily expressed in the market value of land.”
……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

We are engaged on a latter day economic field of Kurukshetra. Landowners have the wealth and power to control the world. Speaking as one octogenarian to another, I believe that we have two basic options.
1) We can give way to the desires of the ego and do whatever is possible to ensure that all members of the family gain a firm foothold on the land by getting both feet on the property ladder.
2) We can take every available opportunity to explain the need to recompense the community for the benefit of private occupation of the land, as set out by Mr Mason, and just keep firing until the water runs down the gun barrel. This benefit is the natural fund to help all those who need it and cannot otherwise have it provided. It can also replace the unjust taxation of earnings and provide the world envisaged by Mr Mason.
Unfortunately, the ability to make this recompense is becoming increasingly difficult because more and more of the present value of future rent has already been collected. This happens on every sale of land, typically land under homes, because the selling price includes the capitalised value of future rent. The vendor receives immediate cash in hand leaving the purchaser, probably a younger member of someone else’s family, to pay the corresponding debt. Not so long ago, this would have been manageable with the aid of a repayment mortgage provided out of savings. Mortgages now are frequently provided as credit by a bank, often ‘interest only’ where there is no repayment of the loan itself. Interest plays the same role as rent in draining wealth out of the productive economy and they are the primary cause of deflation and depression. Controlling this form of bank credit is essential but it cannot be done until financing the purchase of land becomes unattractive.

This may seem a rather stark choice but Henry George said ‘What has destroyed every previous Civilization has been the tendency to the unequal distribution of wealth and power’ Perhaps one can have faith that the truth must prevail and we can return to the Law as it is proclaimed.
‘The land shall not be sold for ever; for the land is mine; for ye are strangers and sojourners with me’.

*The full text together with three excellent lectures is contained in ’One World, One Wealth’ available online from the bookshop on this site.
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Jack Sadie



Joined: 12 Jul 2012
Posts: 9
Location: HARROW UK

PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2015 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Mr Chance for your generous response giving what may well be a current view of these duties. But with respect that was not what I requested and of which I still wish to be reminded.

The duties of citizen and community as then expressed were, in my vague reccollection, beautifully matched with each other and made a good deal of sense. It really surprises me that nobody has yet dredged them up for me.

I suspect they may have been devised by Mr MacLaren as with much of the Part1 material, but I suppose that has long since gone missing.
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Brian Chance



Joined: 09 Nov 2008
Posts: 115
Location: Croydon Surrey U.K.

PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2015 12:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jack
The economic teaching of Mr Maclaren is now available in book form as "The Science of Economics", thanks to the work of Raymond Makewell.
There are also the lectures "The Function of Economics", "The Economics of Government" and "Justice" by Mr Maclaren. You could also dust off your copy of "The Nature of Society"
All these were written over 50 years ago and much must have been revealed since then, but for me a general indication is that an action is just if it is good not just for the individual but also for society as a whole.
It must follow that the community is responsible for the welfare of all citizens and natural law provides a fund for that purpose.
I hope that if all this is not helpful then somebody else who does understand will provide the information you need.
Brian
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