Chapter 30 in Everything Must Change is titled "Organized Religions or Religion Organizing the Common Good?" He identifies seven categories of development economics. Summarizing:
First, we have to live within environmental limits. Second, integrate free trade with fair trade. Third we need to make it easier for people to grow small businesses. This will mean deregulation, that allows small businesses and entrepreneurs to flourish, and regulation, that restrains powerful large multinational corporations.
More public and private aid is needed for developing nations.
Judicious and discerning debt relief for developing nations.
Must recognize that we are finite creatures in a finite creation that must live within biological and material limits. McLaren wants us to invest in four initiatives:
“…improving health and education of children, improving the health and education of women, expanding the availability of contraceptives, and developing social security systems for the elderly. These four actions, taken together, give poor parents good reasons (and means) to have fewer children.” (260)
…we should speak less of an environmental crisis and speak more of an overconsumption crisis. (260)
We need an international minimum wage that is contextually specific to local cost of living conditions. Instead of centralized planning we need to think about ratio-based salary arrangements where the highest salary is limited to some multiple of the lowest paid worker.
Within a framing story that provides no moral context, this kind of ceiling may sound ridiculous, but within a framing story, that takes bonds of community seriously, the lack of a ceiling sounds even worse. (261)
Brief aside here. Last month I wrote a post called Some CEO Compensation Perspective. Fortune 500 CEO earnings have increased sixfold over the past thirty years. However, as economist Xavier Gabix has noted:“The sixfold increase of CEO pay between 1980 and 2003 can be fully attributed to the six-fold increase in market capitalization of large US companies during that period.”
There are about 300,000 CEOs in the US. If you take away these top 500 CEOs find a ratio of CEO salaries to the salary of the average production worker, the ratio is 4.1 to 1.
We need a framing story that leads to integrity where meaning, prosperity and equity are integrated together. Justice can’t be limited to abstractions like “democracy” or “freedom.” Oversight of even democratic free societies are needed. Quoting Jim Garrison, “In an integrating world, governance, not government, is the key to effective management of the global system because networks, not nations, are the emergent powers of the future. “ (262) We need more peer to peer networks like the United Nations, World Trade Organization, International Atomic Energy Commission. He envisions a World Labor Organization, a Global Environmental Organization, and an International Reconstruction Fund (to help failing states rebuild.) (263)
We need to strengthen communities and publics. “Communities are families of families linked together in a local environment of land, water, air, and climate. Publics are larger networks of people whose influence spreads over many communities, such as governments, political parties, multinational corporations, institutions, cartels and media.” (263) He views communities as the key with systemic injustice usually being the result of dysfunction with the publics. He goes on to observe:
Local churches, local schools, local other civil organizations associations have a pivotal role in this regard – strengthening families and communities through celebrating virtue and training people to practice it.” (263)
If the first six recommendations don’t lead to strengthening of these communities, then all will be for naught.
I’ve commented on most of these issues in one way or another in previous posts so I’ll just leave it with this summary.