Imagine No Lending

9 March 2008

In a recent post at the Philosophy Forums, I speculated that a society could avoid problems such as the recent credit crisis by not coercively enforcing contracts. In other words, lending would not exist in a formal way in that borrowers would not be forced to pay back what they borrow. I believe it would put the onus on the lenders to only lend responsibility. Additionally, it would mostly eliminate credit-based economics which would help stop usury and thus help alleviate what some people call wage slavery. Of course, that is mostly a philosophical proposition; in practice, it would take a long time to safely transition from a credit-based economy to an economy without enforced contracts. Anyway, you can join the discussion at the following URL:

Basically, I believe that an economy without as much usury would have less poverty. In such an economy, laborers would get to keep the full fruits of their labor rather than have to pay it to rich, unproductive usurers. As a result, such an economy would have much higher wages and laborers would not need to borrow money. That would lead to much less poverty.

Of course, we could not implement it abruptly in our current economic system. Currently, most working-class people depend on credit to survive. It would help them to change that, but we need to change it carefully.

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Children suffering from Poverty