It is we, the crowd, who will rebuild the economy after Covid-19. We need the means to do it.
The last couple of weeks has revealed who it is that runs the real economy, beyond the glass towers that loom over everything else, imposing their dreams of yachts and dachas and more glass towers – while the Earth burns.
It is the teachers, the health workers, the delivery drivers, the entrepreneurs, innovators and organisers and, yes, the managers too.
It is not the bankers and the ‘wealth creators’ – masters of their universe, not ours. It is our economy and our lives that the 1% play their game of RISK with. Socialising their losses while pocketing our gains.
So now the time has come and a bailout is needed it is the real economy which needs it – and must get it.
Not the bankers – and NOT NOT NOT VIA the bankers.
Remember this now and remember this forever after: They are conjurors not magicians. Their art is sleight of hand not financial, or any other kind of engineering – as they would have you and I believe.
The signs are clear – they’re at it now. Given half the chance they will take this bailout too. Their salaries will not be 80% and (I’m told) their bonuses are guaranteed, as key-workers in the crisis!
They will tell you Chancellor, Prime Minister, President, Senators, that it’s for the best. That they will take the seven small loaves and two small fishes and – by the magic of fractional reserve banking, together with their other, yet darker, arts multiply it. But not to feed the hungry mouths.
Because they are the most cynical of conjurors, not magicians who will walk away with your watch as well as of the available wealth without a qualm – again. Goodness knows that beyond the hard-nosed, cynical PR, we yet seek an apology for the last time.
So, as the signs show – from the bankers and their crisis meetings – that they are about to walk away with the community pot and the orders for distribution, to save the economy: THINK AGAIN.
It is no longer ‘too difficult’ to help the majority of the economy (by the number of people or value) directly: The self-employed, the micro and small businesses who neither have nor need premises (as well as those who do).
No, of course, you can’t invite all their CEO’s into your office in Downing Street or the Treasury for talks. But that no longer matters. You can help – and you can and must do it more directly. This is now what ‘going the extra mile’ means.
You can engage with IPSE and the TUC. You can use crowdfunding / P2P and other, now in place and fully authorised, Fintech platforms to deliver out what you intend.
They are not conjurors, there is no magic – but that IS the point.
Bailout the economy – not the banks…. and not via the banks.
We will rebuild the economy – not the banks. Give us the tools – it is we who will do the job, or suffer the consequences of that decision.
Barry E James is co-founder of the BeyondRent.uk Campaign, co-chair of the Westminster Frontier Technologies Forum, founder The Crowd Data Center.