Bill Totten's Weblog

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Bromsgrove Group

The first meeting of the Bromsgrove Group was held in October 1997. Its purpose was to bring together, in loose association, people concerned about a variety of social, religious, environmental, academic, and ecological issues but who are united in a belief that the supply of money into the economy represents the root cause of their shared concerns. It is an opportunity to meet, network, discuss issues of vital importance based around reform of the money system, and to develop projects to promote our solutions.

Although we came together from many diverse viewpoints, we are united in realising that the supply of money into the economy is the big issue that governs all the issues and without a solution, all attempts at social and environmental reform are thwarted because governmental organs of influence and authority simply plead they have "no money".

Prosperity advocates that the solution to this admission of economic inadequacy is a switch from funding mechanisms based on debt to funding mechanisms based upon the availability of people, skills and materials. This can most readily be achieved by direct Government creation of the funds necessary to take up the shortfall between what is socially and environmentally desirable, and what is being achieved through the current practice of borrowing from the banking system and not only borrowing, but borrowing with interest added!

We are up against a powerful banking lobby which knows very well what wealth and prestige has been garnered from its monopoly in the creation of money, and which will resist with a vast array of financial and other resources, any attempt to dislodge it from its lofty pedestal. Therefore we must educate and mobilise the public. We must generate grass-roots demand. We must convince our fellow citizens that Government can, and should, create money on our behalf.

The third annual meeting of the Bromsgrove Group was held towards the end of October 1999, and the following is a list of initiatives represented at this successful event:

British Association for Monetary Reform

Campaign for Interest Free Money

Centre for Holistic Studies (Mumbai)

Christian Council for Monetary Justice

Christian Ecology Link

COMER (Committee on Monetary and Economic Reform)

Community for Reconciliation

Federation of Small Businesses

Forum for Christian Peace Groups

Forum for Stable Currencies

Green Party Economics Policy Group

Independent Thinkers

Institute for Rational Economics

Islamic Party of Great Britain

Nascent Youth Group

Scottish Monetary Reform Society

Sustainable Economics Newsletter

Two important ideas came out of Bromsgrove 99. Firstly, a call for a regular newsletter to keep everyone in touch with what's happening in the movement. Prosperity answers that call. Secondly, the need for a Statement of Belief to represent the basis we associate upon and which respects our diversity. [See below or] Look under Principles for the Bromsgrove Statement, intended to represent this common platform. It avoids talking about the Basic Income, or the Just Price, or any other policy which may become possible once the system has been changed, but which at present, different individuals and groups have various opinions on. It also seeks to avoid the technicalities of change which are open to debate and disagreement; the aim is to achieve consensus with clarity and concision. The Bromsgrove Conference has now been held every October since the first meeting in 1997.

It is expected that the statement may evolve within the principle that policies and technicalities are excluded. It has been constructed by Alistair McConnachie with thanks to Mike Rowbotham, John Johansen-Berg, Peter Challen, Jack Hornsby, Donald Martin, Robert Arnold, Edward Hamlyn, David Weston and James Gibb Stuart for ideas provided. Feedback is invited.

The Bromsgrove Group Statement of Beliefs

We recognise:

1. The supply of money into the economy is the big issue which governs all the issues. The present economic system is debt-based. This means that virtually all money is supplied to the economy as a debt to be repaid, with interest, to the banking system. Governments rely upon the majority of people going into debt to the banking system simply to create enough money to supply the economy. Governments, too, must borrow from the banking system to fund public expenditure. Taxpayers must then pay back the debt and interest repayments.

2. As a consequence of this debt-based economic system, we see the indebtedness of people, families, and countries growing daily. The present debt-based economic system perpetuates debt slavery, and this is ultimately destructive of society, the environment, and the planet.

3. The banking system creates money out of nothing. We are concerned at the claim that there is no money to fund vital public services, industries, and social and environmental projects, when this money at source is created out of nothing. Governments should be able to supply money, debt-free, without having to borrow from the banking system. "Debt-free" means that it does not have to be repaid.

4. The debt-based economic system must be challenged and alternatives constructed. The economy needs a supply of money debt-free.

Therefore, we affirm:

1. Money must be based on the real wealth of society people, skills and materials not on debt. The supply of money must relate to these physical facts not to the requirements of the banking system.

2. Money is the means of exchange for the goods and services produced by this real wealth. It is not a commodity itself.

3. The purpose of an economic system is to provide goods and services as, when and where required in order to satisfy human needs.

4. Money must be our servant not our master.

5. Money, at source, is created out of nothing, so there is no need for it to be scarce.

6. Whatever is physically possible and socially desirable can be made financially possible.

7. The present economic system can, and will, be changed for the better.

Consequently, we propose:

1. That the government via a democratically accountable authority undertakes the creation of a supply of money, debt-free, into the economy.

2. This authority should spend, not lend, a supply of money into circulation on the basis of proven need. This will reduce the overall burden of debt in society, break reliance upon the banking system for the supply of money, and open potential for limitless change.


Association in the Bromsgrove Group is open to individuals and organisations which support this statement of belief.

Respect is paid to the different options for change represented by different members within this statement of belief.

The group meets once a year and regularly exchanges information, inspiration and support.

Bill Totten


Post a Comment

<< Home