Move Your Money

January 6, 2010 by  
Filed under Earners

U2 U2’s front man, Bono, points to People Power and the Upside-Down Pyramid as one of the big ideas that’s going to make the next 10 years more interesting. He says, “Increasingly, the masses are sitting at the top, and their weight, via cellphones, the Web and the civil society and democracy these technologies can promote, is being felt by those who have traditionally held power.” Or, as the band has paraphrased lyrically, from their song Silver and Gold,

Captains and Kings in the ship’s hold
They came to collect
Silver and gold, silver and gold.

I seen the coming and the going
Seen the captains and the Kings.
Seen their navy blue uniforms
Seen them bright and shiny things, bright and shiny things.

The temperature is rising
The fever white hot
Mister I ain’t got nothing
But it’s more than you’ve got
These chains no longer bind me
Nor the shackles at my feet
Outside are the prisoners
Inside the free (set them free).

A prize fighter in a corner is told
Hit where it hurts – For Silver and Gold
You can stop the world from turning around
You just gotta pay a penny in the pound.

We don’t know if blogger Arianna Huffington, film maker Eugene Jarecki, and financier Robert Johnson were listening to Silver and Gold when they hatched their plan for the Move Your Money movement, but they’ve given life to the lyric.

Frustrated with the lack of financial reform of the banking system, and the lack of remorse from the big bankers that brought on the Great Recession, they’re encouraging people in the US  to vote with their dollars, and move their money from large banks to community banks to better support their communities. Whether in a large bank or small bank, your money is equally safe because FDIC insures all accounts up to $250K. But, still, you may be wondering, “why should I bother”?

The official Move Your Money video below uses the 1946 film, “It’s a Wonderful Life” to explain why moving your money matters. It’ also happens to be one of our favorite films, so much so, that we ‘ve used it in our Open Pay video (at right).

To the reasons already offered to make the move, we’d like to offer a couple of our own.  First, if you’re credit worthy and can’t get a mortgage, car or business loan, you may want to think of access to credit as a pright – a right provisioned as a product.

Your community bank likely makes most of its money on straight forward loans that they, themselves, hold, not on opaque derivatives trading, as many large banks do.  So, your small act(s) of  moving dollars to them, helps provision a pright to credit within your community more reliably than voting for a candidate who promises the same.

Second, think about what bankers in your community earn, relative to bankers at large banks. Chances are it’s a number considerably closer to what you earn yourself. Your small act(s) strengthens their position and reduces inequality – shown to weaken the economy overall and is the source of many social problems.

If, like us,  you’re looking for the Big Plus over the next 10 years, rather than a repeat of the Big Zero (no job creation – no home appreciation -no stock market gains) that we’ve had over the last 10, ask your self this question, “Is my purchase, support or other economic acts going to send money upwards or pull it down?” Moving your money to a community bank is a great way to pull it down. It keeps your money circulating where you live – to better benefit your family, friends and neighbors.

If you want more info, you can watch Robert Johnson explain on Democracy Now how Move Your Money got going. And, remember, the economy exists to serve U 2. It’s not just the GDP, it’s the Gini. Or, in other words, it’s not just the size of the pie  that counts, it’s also how the pie gets sliced which keeps us all well!

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