The Bank of Joy is a Dutch initiative to eventually issue an alternative currency and to run a bank that works without charging interest,
and that does not loan out money unless they have it.
Description of The Bank of Joy
"Who are we? B of Joy is a sustainable, cooperative, fair-trade, savings and investment bank. The initiative is of, for and by the people. We ourselves are the change. B of Joy helps with the positive growth of both awareness and the economy, and puts the citizens and society first. Its goals are a just society and a healthy economy. Our starting point is abundance instead of shortages.
What do we stand for?
Unlike the current banks we do not, as a full reserve bank, lend out more money than we have received. Next to financial returns, B of Joy also gives Ecological, Emotional and Social (F.E.E.S) returns. We invest in local economies, in innovation and in small and medium enterprises. The B of Joy doesn't only stand for bank. It stands also for Awareness, Citizen and Movement.
As soon as the Movement is big enough, we will instigate referenda, so that citizens can determine policies themselves. For example: in Switzerland all citizens can vote on important issues. B of Joy doesn't work with bonuses, interest and speculation. B of Joy guarantees sustainable development and a stable economy. We will turn money back into a means of transaction so that it will serve us again.
How will that work in practice?
With our new form of mortgage one will save in 30 years, on a house costing 230.000 euro, an average of 100.000 euro on interest. By eliminating interest we will become the first truly sustainable financial initiative in the Netherlands.
Through the Bail-free saving- and investment program we protect deposits amounting to 100.000 euro or more against the greedy hands of politicians, the EU and banks. The assets will serve society and will be inflation-proof, because we will compensate for inflationary effects on the euro.
B of Joy members will have access to a fixed value currency (URA), a members marketplace, business guide and collective purchasing power. This will promote connections, save on costs and improve turnover. Every member is part-owner, has a say in the cooperative through 1 vote and a right to share in the returns. How can you take part in the realization of this bank?
For 25 euro or more, you can become a supporter of the initiative and, if you want, a member for the first year free of charge. For 100 euro you are a part-owner of the bank and you will receive a member certificate that in the future can give yield. By taking part, you help create a just society based on abundance. For ourselves, for our children and the future of our world. Will you join us?"
Reaction from Dick Eastman:
The Bank of Joy is affiliated with Ronald Bernard who has exposed the institutionalized anti-morality of the international financial elite. They formed a clean bank, an honest bank, a bank of virtue and call it the Bank of Joy. I like it because it lends only money that people with savings have entrusted to it for lending -- instead of making loans on the basis of a mere fraction of cash on deposit. They are right on this. Banks should only lend what savers give them to lend.
But the Bank of Joy lends without charging interest. This is not a good solution for a national banking system. Paying people for the use of their money and that loan having a price is necessary for allocating scarce savings among the many seeking loans for endless uses. The interest rate is the price of the scarce loanable funds in a system where only real money savings are lent out. Interest rates in such a loanable funds market would be determined by supply and demand and competition among banks for the savers' money and for the entrepreneurs borrowing business. Prices regulate.
The whole issue of whether to save money or spend it depends on the money (interest) a saver can earn lending it out through the intermediary of a bank. Also the issue of whether an undertaking is worthwhile should be determined by the prospects of the venture in terms of supply and market demand and risk as measured against the cost of borrowing. There should be a return to people who, instead of spending their money, save it so that others may borrow it. Remember, we are talking about a different system than the one we have now. I SAY THAT CHARGING INTEREST IN FREE COMPETITION FOR LOANABLE FUNDS IS A GOOD THING as long as the central bank or collusion among banks is not fixing interest rates to exploit the lender. ...
Finally, it is great that the Bank of Joy is practicing lending only the savers' savings to the borrowers. That is good practice for the future populist system if and when it comes. All banks will be like that in a populist republic. HOWEVER, IT IS WRONG TO HAVE ALTERNATIVE AND COMPETING CURRENCIES. That always ends in chaos and it increases costs and risks to all of our economic transacting in the real economy. When we have to shop around for the best kind of currency to use -- that wastes time -- and worse than that, it invites speculation among alternative currencies. A NATION IS A NATION IN PART BECAUSE IT SHARES ONE AND ONLY ONE CURRENCY -- THIS IS THE POWER OF THE STATE AND THE IDENTITY OF THE NATION AS A NATION. ...
I've put out a few dozen or more articles about banking in the past two weeks -- but no one wants to discuss them. I wish I could talk with Ronald Bernard and the Bank of Joy people about what they are doing -- but, even if I could break the language barrier, I doubt they would listen to a suggestion when they have gotten so far with their own design for their Bank of Joy.
The Bank of Joy is a good credit union for members, for the stream of new families that keeps looking to buy a home. But it does not work so well for financing businesses, for determining which entrepreneur should get a loan and which should not. A system of competition and competing interest rates -- kept low by REAL COMPETITION AMONG LENDERS -- is, in my opinion, the answer. Maybe you think otherwise. Wouldn't it be great if people actually discussed this question, giving thought to the kind of banking system that would be best for all of us?
Monetary reformer Anthony Migchels comments -
Bernard's Bank of Joy is interest-free, but he has not shown how he is going to attract capital, which in his scheme is necessary, and which will not be easy without giving depositors some sort of return. I think he's actually intending some sort of Islamic Banking, which is based on 'shared risk' and 'return on investment', which sounds better than usury, but ultimately costs about the same.
About Dick's take: I've had endless discussions with him about this stuff.
Dick is wise on the deflationary impacts of Usury: the very rich take in the Usury, much more than they can spend back into circulation. This has major deflationary results, and the real economy has to take on more debt, to replace the liquidity lost to the Plutocrats. His proposals solve this problem.
However, he refuses to admit that Usury will always favor the very rich, because they have money to lend and will continue to suck up this unearned income.
There simply is no need for Usury. There ARE ways of attracting capital interest-free, and what is even more important: we can use the power of money creation to provide loans without interest, it's as simple as that: just do what the banks do, at cost price, instead of constant reallocation of wealth to the very richest people.
Having said that, I sure agree with Dick's conclusion: it would indeed be nice if we had a good discussion about this, beyond this minute circle of initiates that obsesses with this stuff.
It is, after all, only the most pressing issue there is. But the cognitive dissonance remains in the Alternative Media: everybody is lambasting the bankers, nobody is talking about monetary reform.