In considering the essential problem of how to produce and distribute material wealth, virtually all of the great economists in Western history have ignored the significance of the commons—the shared resources of nature and society that people inherit, create and utilize.
Imagine a world with as many as one billion people facing harsh climate change impacts resulting in devastating droughts and/or floods, extreme weather, destruction of natural resources, in particular lands, soils and water, and the consequence of severe livelihoods conditions, famine and starvation.
The United Nations has called the situation in Yemen the world’s largest humanitarian crisis, with more than 10 million people who require immediate assistance. And the situation could become even worse.
There is still hope of restoring finance to the role of servant to, and not master of, economies and regions. But for that to happen the public must realise that citizens can exercise economic power over global financial markets. The people must lead, so that leaders can follow, writes Ann Pettifor for Red Pepper magazine.