Post By gaia1 in IIMT
The guiding principle for the structure of the zero draft of the outcome document?
Presented at the Second Intersessional of Rio 2012 Earth Summit
Frans C. Verhagen, M.Div., M.I.A., Ph.D., sustainability sociologist
International Institute of Monetary Transformation (IIMT) , www.timun.net; firstname.lastname@example.org
UN Headquarters, 14-16 December 2011
“As to methods there may be a million and then some, but principles are few. The man
who grasps principles can successfully select his own methods. The man, who tries
methods, ignoring principles, is sure to have trouble.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson, 1890s
Monetary justice is the ethical principle that underlies the Tierra Fee & Dividend (TFD) system, the IIMT’s carbon-based international monetary proposal. The TFD is presented as a transformational pathway of an integrated solution to a non-working international monetary system, an increasing global threat of catastrophic climate change and an unsustainable model of development.
A main theme of Tierra Fee & Dividend (TFD) system, following Emerson’s observation, is the need to first search for principles before searching for methods. One of the main shortcomings in UN conferences and negotiations seems to be a basic lack of interest, unwillingness, or inability in dealing in a substantial and coherent way with the ethical dimension of the various global challenges the UN and the world community face.
Thus, the main premise of the TFD system is that no stability in the monetary, financial, economic and commercial systems is possible without the principles of equity and sustainability. Underlying the principle of monetary sustainability is the principle of monetary justice not only in its social, ecological, procedural and intergenerational meanings, but especially in its transformational meaning as the ethical foundation of a carbon-based international monetary system. Monetary justice is proposed here to be the main guiding principle that unifies many other important principles as spelled out in the recent Bonn DPI/NGO Declaration. Monetary justice is proposed here to function as the organizing principle for the much discussed integration of the three pillars of sustainable development as called for by the UN SG Report of December 2010 and in various DESA Reports. Consequently, monetary justice is suggested to be the guiding principle for the structure of the Zero Draft, the three main parts of which would consist of the explanation and application of the monetary justice principle, the various suggestions in the Compilation document that deal with the development of a global institutional framework and the more numerous suggestions that deal with green economies and low-carbon and climate resilient development.
The world over, millions of people are demonstrating and protesting the gross inequality between people and demand basic overhaul of the monetary, financial, economic and commercial systems, because these systems do not work for the 99% of them as these systems continue to enrich the few, impoverish the many and imperil the planet. It is most important that government, business and civil society leaders in the Rio process respond to this demand for fundamental and transformational change in the world’s global systems which unlike physical systems are human made and, consequently, can be changed and even transformed. It is possible to achieve this global
transformation if the world’s most basic global system, i.e. international monetary system is transformed. By introducing a carbon standard, not a pure or flexible gold standard, this transformed international monetary system would not only transform the dysfunctional international monetary system, but, at same time, provides a realistic pathway to stabilize the climate and to bring about a low-carbon and sustainable model of development. Such monetary transformation is a practical, though very challenging way, to integrate the three pillars of sustainable development, a main objective of the Rio 2012 Earth Summit.
MONETARY JUSTICE in its regular and transformational sense
International monetary justice is not only the application of social, environmental, procedural and intergenerational justice principles to the present international monetary system, but also the application of these various forms of justice to a transformed international monetary system. International monetary justice in the latter, transformational or integrated sense, argues that, as a matter of justice, government, business and civil society are to pursue a carbon-based international monetary system that would remove monetary injustices such as the global reserve system, would honor the right of a stable climate in the interest of both Earth and human wellbeing and would promote human rights.
There is little social, environmental (climate), procedural and intergenerational justice in the present international monetary system, the climate system and the human relations system. These injustices can reduced simultaneously by the pursuit of the proposed carbon-based international monetary system which is described in some detail in the Stakeholder Forum’s http://www.earthsummit2012.org/index.php/pubs/sf-publications/412-sdg-thinkpieces and in great detail in the forthcoming Cosimo book-length publication THE TIERRA FEE AND DIVIDEND SYSTEM: Using a transformed international monetary system to combat climate change and advance low carbon and climate resilient.
Such carbon-based international monetary system is possible if government, business and civil society and particularly their leaders are able to think outside the box. Such thinking is demonstrated by Maurice Strong who believes that basing the international monetary system on a carbon standard is “innovative” and that such system “seems to be very promising particularly in light of the stalemate in post-Kyoto prospects” (October 8, 2010 email); by author Bill McKibben, leader of the global www.350.org who believes that a carbon-based international monetary system is on “one of the remaining possibilities” given that physics and politics increasingly narrow our possible paths of action ; by those who signed an international petition entitled “Make monetary justice the basis of your Rio negotiations” at http://www.change.org/petitions/g20-and-rio-summitteers-make-monetary-justice-the-basis-of-your-negotiations Needed for this transformed international monetary system is a plan that would lead to a financial system that is credit- rather than debt-based and that would be democratically governed by a Global Central Bank. The Chicago Plan of the 1930s was proposed by many outstanding economists to deal with the Great Depression. It withdrew the privilege of fractional reserve banking by privately-owned banks, making them utilities without the privilege of creating money and of owning over 90% of the money supply.
The September 2011 DPI/NGO Bonn Conference’s Declaration states in line 265 that governments, among many other things, are “to rethink the monetary system based upon a carbon standard.” Given that the Earth Summit wants to develop “New Foundations for the Future”, it is essential that among those foundations the monetary foundation is going to be considered because it is the international monetary system functioning as glue, as a lubricant for the other international system that can be considered to be the linchpin of those systems. As a consequence it is crucial that the Rio 2012 Earth Summit process basing itself on the requirements of monetary justice give priority to monetary governance as the basis of governance systems for the 21st century.