2020- 2022 Policy Process | Green Party of Canada
Where GPC membership collaborates to develop our policies
G21-P006 Public Borrowing Only from the Bank of Canada
This proposal was discussed in the workshop during Phase 2 of the VGM. However, there was not enough time for this proposal to be voted on in plenary by the members during Phase 2. Therefore, this proposal will not be included in the ratification vote.
The GPC advocates federal government action to allow Indigenous, municipal, provincial and federal governments to borrow interest-free from the Bank of Canada to cover deficits without resorting to commercial credit, if necessary by reviewing and revising the Bank of Canada Act, associated rules and regulations and international commitments.
To change Canada’s public borrowing arrangements to allow federal, provincial, municipal and Indigenous governments to access interest free credit to undertake the investments necessary for a transition to a green and socially just economy without resorting to private credit markets, domestic or international, which generate pressure towards austerity.
- Release all levels of Canadian government from constraints of bond markets that promote austerity;
- Enable them to make the investments necessary for a transition to an economy of Just Green Wellbeing with interest-free credit; and
- Deprive financial speculators the cushion of safe government debt and thus reduce unproductive speculation and inequality.
Supporting Comments from Submitter
The Bank of Canada has long purchased Government of Canada bonds and during the pandemic it has extended these facilities to provincial governments and other parts of the economy. Our proposal is that the Bank of Canada alone purchase the debt of all Canadian levels of government: federal, provincial, municipal and Indigenous.
A well-informed article about how Canada’s governments went from borrowing from the Bank of Canada to borrowing from bond markets and the adverse consequences of this decision.
In 2011, the Committee for Monetary and Economic Reform (COMER) launched lawsuits for the same purpose. In 2017 the supreme court declined to hear the committee’s appeal.
The website of the above-mentioned COMER:
Ecological Wisdom, Sustainability, Participatory Democracy, Social Justice, Respect for Diversity, Non-Violence
Relation to Existing Policy
Add to current GPC policy.
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Conversation with Sarah Gabrielle Baron
I wish that the rationale portino of this motion had evidence from other countries, success stories, something to provide confidence that it's good and normal and proper and beneficial to do this this way. I like the mention of Green Wellbeing in the justification section, which I think is a nod to replacing GDP with a Geniune Progress Indicator (or 'wellbeing index'), a long-standing Green policy. I'm just not confident that this is the best way to go about it, mostly because I don't know enough background about this macro-economic type of reasoning.
The article from Canadian Dimension provides a solid overview, I think.
The ground, post-covid especially, is shifting under the economic orthodoxies that have bought us to the precipice of ecocide. While I don't pretend a detailed or thorough grasp of Modern Monetary Theory, I'm making headway and am convinced that that the conversation and terms of reference of status quo macro-economics urgently need a radical re-boot. This proposal is part of that conversation.
Bill Mitchell: Demystifying Modern Monetary Theory:
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