A Real People’s Bank: Occupy Wall Street’s Call for a Public Banking Option

Justmeans.com • October 17, 2011

One of the demands floating around the Occupy Wall Street protest movement has been a call for a public banking option. In an October 8 interview on the Real News Network, Dr. Michael Hudson, a professor of economics at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, explains this demand:

“The demand isn’t simply to make a public bank but to treat the banks generally as a public utility, just as you treat electric companies as a public utility. The key about public utilities is their rate of return is guaranteed and the rules which they operate under are guaranteed. Just as there was pressure for a public option in health care, there should be a public option in banking. There should be a government bank that offers credit card rates without punitive 30 percent interest rates, without penalties, without raising the rate if you don’t pay your electric bill. This is how America got strong in the 19th and early 20th century, by essentially having public infrastructure, just like you’d have roads and bridges…The idea of public infrastructure was to lower the cost of living and to lower the cost of doing business. You’re not going to do that if you let Citibank write the rules.”[2]

Ellen Brown, the president of the non-profit Public Banking Institute writes, “We don’t hear much about a public banking option in the United States, but a number of countries already have a resilient public banking sector…the model remains a viable alternative to the private profiteering being protested on Wall Street today.”[3]

Read the article here.

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One Response

  1. It is very obvious that they conspire to keep off the public to hear about PUBLIC BANKING PARADIGM as one of the best solutions for America, for the Philippines and for the entire Western worlds.

    I think the solution-public-banking-scheme-idea must be repeated million times to pressure the Governments of America and of the Philippines and other nations to do that universal public banking options to resolve the crisis We need one million Ellen Brown to usher this kind of reform. Public banking is directly related to monetary reform and to Social Credit despite of some differences. For me I make a coalition of ideas for pragmatic solutions necessary in expediency.

    Eric V. Encina

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