This is a challenge to conventional thinking around money and the 'debt crisis'. By re-evaluating the source of money, Mary Mellor presents a radical alternative to austerity and privatisation: public wealth, or, money used for sustainability, sufficiency and social justice.
Debt or Democracy debunks the received lessons of the financial crisis of 2007. Political elites shout about a house whose finances are in disarray; a 'yawning deficit' created by reckless spending in a bloated public sector. The answer to this 'debt crisis' has been harsh austerity measures - but this is a dangerously deceptive discourse.
Turning against the prevalent narrative, with its language of 'debt' and 'deficit', Mellor takes on the familiar question - 'where does money come from?'. The real solution is a return to the notion of public wealth and the public economy; of a monetary system owned by, and operated in the interests of, the majority.
Mary Mellor is Emeritus Professor at Northumbria University, where she was founding Chair of the University's Sustainable Cities Research Institute. She has published extensively on alternative economics integrating socialist, feminist and green perspectives. Her books include Debt or Democracy (Pluto, 2015), The Future of Money (Pluto, 2010) and The Politics of Money (Pluto, 2002).
Introduction 1. The Privatisation of Money and the Politics of Austerity 2. Money for Sustainability, Sufficiency and Social Justice 3. Provisioning through Public Money 4. Misunderstanding Public Money: Four Myths and a Confusion 5. Janus-faced: the Central Bank 6. Understanding Public Money 7. Public Money: Beyond the Borders 8. Conclusion: Crisis and Change Bibliography Index