I get into a social network , and through a comment from a friend I get the link below :
I find it very interesting and while I read I realize that this is the first time I read about something so interesting, a now a days problem and from what curiously I had never heard of a topic as companies with a social utility .
I realize that cost much time and effort to make diffusion. Also that this topic starts only now to have it and it is very important to learn and find more news and books by people like Christian Felber. A thinker of our time , without cheap philosophies with utopies that are plausible .
( From the link of “El País”)
Christian Felber had an intuition : in financial markets was the root of the problem. In economics, a social science to be addressed taking into account ethical, philosophical and moral .
After researching and reflecting , into studies of Sociology and Political Science , the young philologist and Austrian psychologist , born in Salzburg in 1972 , became its panoramic view of the social sciences in 50 proposals for a fairer world , published in 2006 . Later, investigated the values underpinning the capitalist system : competitiveness , performance , growth, profit. “What values are these ” thought . Is there no other ? He began to study some of those who govern human behavior in society such as aid, cooperation , solidarity . And he found that these were not present in the markets.
Question. The problem is that the money went from being a means to become an end ?
Answer . Yes, the money, capital , profit. If a company can more easily obtain that end undermining democracy and corrupting it , is going to do , because for a company democracy is a lower order compared to increasing profits and heritage. If the purpose of the company was the common good, not corrupt democracy. This is the core.
Christian Felber speaks these words in perfect Castilian on a terrace, in Barcelona , with a heat that melts the asphalt. Alternative economics professor at the University of Vienna student days spent in Madrid. He explains that the definition of the values , objectives and means allowed to show that the average inmate system lives : money.
He turned his thoughts in a book, New values for the economy (2008 ) , in which differentiated values, goals and means of the capitalist system . The clarity of his presentation made several Austrian businessmen to approach him . ” I said that was what they had in the gut , but who had never been so clearly verbalize ” . The interaction of Felber , spokeswoman ATTAC Austria ( Association for the Taxation of Financial Transactions for the Aid of Citizens ) , with a dozen entrepreneurs produced the model of the economy of the common good , which combines ethics and economics.
P. In The economics of welfare, you offer data showing that the income gap between highest paid executives and workers in enterprises has increased from a ratio of 24-1 , in 1965 , one of 325-1 , in 2011 . You propose that wages do not exceed 20 times the minimum wage . What are the first steps to be taken in a transition towards a common good ?
Any alternative voice should be heard ? Teresa Forcades , Spanish nun who rails against the system. “Speak without fear of capitalism , with clarity , and is committed to direct democracy .”
An idea or a concrete step towards a better world? ” Direct Democracy : Referendums and democratic assemblies to define a constitutional process .”
A book? No contest: The case against competition (no case : the case against competition ) , Alfie Kohn . ” It opens our eyes to the issue of cooperation and competition .”
A date? ” One of Max Frisch : The problem of capitalism is that man exploits man. And communism is exactly backward . “
R. The limitation of inequality could be one of the first steps , as is being done in Switzerland. When it first sued in 2006 , and of course , I was not the first to do so , often branded communist I propose a limitation of inequality. I consider myself liberal . To safeguard the freedoms you have to put limits on grounds liberals. But the only freedom that is the limit of the property. This year, the World Economic Forum founder Klaus Schwab in Davos proposed limiting factor income in the 20 , ie higher wages than twenty times the minimum wage. But the media silenced him . In November he will do a referendum in Switzerland on the implementation of twelve companies factor . There is a proposal communist or , utopian logic enters the economic leaders themselves , who know that if we continue like this we will end in a civil war . This is not a good prospect for them either , so I prefer to limit inequality losing everything and lose the peace .
The economy model developed by Felber common good is eminently practical . Companies instead of being guided only by their results, they do by criteria of social utility. As important is to produce profits, as they respect the environment , remunerate both men and women , do not exploit their workers , create jobs … The tool for companies , is the balance of the common good , which assesses all these factors. Same with countries : the indicator of gross domestic product (GDP ) is replaced by the product of the common good , an indicator that measures the quality of democracy , environmental policy , the fair distribution of the benefits generated , equality, between other factors.
Three years have passed since the publication , in August 2010 , the common good ofthe economy (edited by Deusto ) . More than 3,800 people have joined the cause , in addition to 159 associations and 1,277 companies ( over two hundred Spanish ) .
P. In their model , firms better look after the common good receive incentives , but at this point in the process , what incentives for companies to join this idea?
R. The effect is the strongest . Many companies would care to know why they are doing what they are doing and be part of a system that makes sense , not a system that goes against our ethics. They are pioneers of an economy at the service of mankind . The balance of the common good for them is an organizational development tool : the ethical assessment of what they are doing leads them to a metamorphosis. On the platform in which they operate , companies lend each other support , including financial . They attract labor ethics and ethical customers .
P. One of the keys to his model is based on a commitment to direct democracy. Citizens are consulted more often involved in the draft legislation , for example , thanks to the possibilities offered by digital technologies .
R. Maybe this is the first key. Everything is possible with other types of democracy that combines direct democracy , participatory democracy and economic democracy. The parties are too far from the sovereign people . The culture of direct democracy is beginning , because people realize that the supposed representatives do not represent us . For me the solution is direct democracy, referenda , democratic assemblies for certain topics such as the economic, monetary , media …
P. You speak of a new democratic system of the economy …
Christian Felber . / GIANLUCA BATTISTA
R. Yes , but where do you start? For the municipalities of the common good , organized citizen participation processes . The first is the development of quality of life index city , to know what the goal is . And second, democratic economic assemblies , where citizens define economic order , according to your preferences , needs and values. The economy of the common good is not a perfect model and finish. Key issues to be discussed by the citizens.
P. And advocates called democratic banking , how banks would work ?
R. We should start by butchering the systemic banks which are too big and they are very interconnected , why are rescued . That would get the market back to being market. Banks would offer an alternative to orient the common good , becoming non-profit entities , as at the first savings banks , so they could enjoy the benefits to the State . If you choose to be for-profit entities , are withdrawn support from the state , for example, the support of the European bank. The State would not hire them , nor guarantee the savings deposited in them. And if you go bankrupt , the state does not have to save them. In the long term , the idea is that all banks are oriented to the common good , like schools , colleges , universities .
P. Faced with competition you propose cooperation. Faced with distrust, the need for control and fear, generosity , altruism and solidarity. More than once I have criticized this idyllic and utopian vision of what things can be …
R. Yes , I also have said they are against human nature . Science says that cooperation motivates us more stronger than the competition , that the human being has an innate sense of justice and the capacity for compassion , empathy , and a spontaneous urge to help another , even babies two years as have . The fact that today we are so selfish is that we learn , not something genetic .