Turning Consumers into Capitalists
Capitalist — a person who has capital especially invested in a business.
A definition from Merriam-Webster
Capital can take many forms. An ancient form of capital is custodianship. Custodianship is the obligation to look after capital and gain a benefit from its use. Community loans is a way for consumers to obtain capital over which they have custodianship.
Capital in the form of payment for future use is economically efficient and typically provides twice the investment value for long term assets compared to individual ownership of assets. Community capital
- removes the need for expensive financial products,
- uses the efficient payment system to transfer value,
- and is closely tied to the production and use of goods and services.
Community loans are tied to the real world so the value stays relatively stable compared to the value of assets.
In a modern economy, capital comes into existence when goods and services are traded for more than production costs. The profits made from trading create capital. In a free-market economy, the profit is shared between investors or owners of capital and consumers by the consumers taking their share of the profits as lower prices. This is the invisible hand of the market. In money markets the invisible hand is inefficient.
In modern mass markets with global brands and money markets, the free-market is ineffective in sharing profits. Instead of sharing the profits with lower prices, a business can share the profits as future payments for goods and services. This gives consumers future capital on which they can draw, and trading becomes fairer. Using payments with discounts also turns consumers into capitalists.
Reducing the cost of operating a capitalist system
Traditional capitalist systems operate by turning capital into financial products. The financial product becomes the earner of income. A financial product gets the profit and passes it on to the owner of the financial product. The cost of operating the financial product is the profit generated by the financial product. With a loan, it is Interest. With Shares, it is the dividends.
With payments with discounts, we eliminate the cost of operating financial products. Payments with discounts are a variation of the highly efficient and low-cost payments system and the costs are covered by regular sales with discounts. Consumer owners of capital in a business encourage the business to reduce the costs of production and lead to further savings.
Investors and consumers share savings from payment capital. Investors receive higher returns and consumers have lower prices. Instead of investors taking on future risk, consumers take the risk on future production. This turns consumers into custodians, not owners, of the assets from which they gain a benefit. Like owners, custodians take responsibility for the assets from which they gain a benefit. When the goods and services come from the natural environment, consumers take responsibility for the natural environment from which they gain a benefit.