Trade, Money, and Finances
On the Road to a Citizens Assembly
Setting up an Arbitration Tribunal on Debt: An Alternative Solution?
The Future of the Commons
Governance of the World Banana Trade
Final Declaration of the Sixth World Parliamentary Forum - Caracas 2006
Declaration of Nyéléni
Final Declaration "Linking Alternatives 2"
Raising International Climate Finance
Campaign for People’s Goals for Sustainable Development
The IMF, the World Bank, and Respect of Human Rights
Nairobi World Parliamentary Forum Resolution
Persistent corruption in low-income countries requires global action
A Bit Rich: Calculating the Real Value to Society of Different Professions
"Negative Growth": Rebirth of a Revolutionary Concept
FASE’s Commitment to a Sustainable and Democratic Amazonia
Alterglobalization, a Long-term Process Leading to Alternatives
Winnowing Wheat from Chaff
Proposals for a Fair and Sustainable Economy
Fair Coop, the Earth cooperative for a fair economy
Call to Multiply the Village of Alternatives
Marrakech Process for the Protection and Promotion of All Human Rights of Migrants and Persons in Transnational Mobility
The Future of Democratic Sovereignty and Transnational Law
After Copenhagen, Some Light on the Horizon
Henceforth, the Keys to the Future are Responsibility, Solidarity, and Courage
Alternative World Water Forum
The UN Reform and the Alterglobalization Movement
Political Oversight of the ICANN: A Briefing for the WSIS Summit
Now is the time to rediscover John Maynard Keynes’s revolutionary ideas for the organization of international trade and adapt them to re-balance finances in the world’s economies of the twenty-first century.
The economist John Maynard Keynes came to the postwar table with an innovative project for the future of world trade, which he called the International Trade Organization (ITO), supported by an international central bank, the International Clearing Union (ICU). The ICU was meant to issue a world currency for trade, the "bancor." Why the ITO and the ICU never materialized, and what would have changed if they had, is a sobering story from which we have a lot to learn.
It tells us that, in a rational world, it would be possible to build a trading system serving the needs of people in both the North and the South. With an ITO and an ICU, we could have had a world order in which no country could run a huge trade deficit (the US deficit stood at $716 billion in 2005) or the huge trade surplus of contemporary China.
Under such a system, crushing the third-world debt and the devastating structural-adjustment policies applied by the World Bank and the IMF would have been unthinkable, although the system would not have abolished capitalism. If we could resurrect Keynes’s concept, another world really might be possible: he figured out how to make it work more than 60 years ago. His plan would have to be dusted off and fine tuned, but its core remains relevant.