A New Way Forward.org

(on all pages: find the links when scrolled down)

Linked with Challengling the Banks, and with Danny Schechter – USA.

  • We live in challenging and increasingly hard times in the United States. Over the last few decades, the American economy has drastically changed. Wages for working people have not risen in 30 years, the vast majority of families need two incomes to get by, and after working for 40 years, few are assured a livable pension.
  • We have witnessed the once strong American economy and American worker become the most indebted in the world. The average American is in debt to a greater degree than any time in history, while in a half century the nation has gone from the greatest creditor nation in history to the largest debtor nation in history.
  • Most recently, a meltdown of Wall Street and the banking sector has seen 401ks drop in value and, most tellingly, a government deaf to the plight of average Americans and cries of economists immediately pour trillions of dollars in the coffers of Wall Street and the banks. At the same time, the floors of Congress are turned into a trading pit, with lobbyists of mega-corporations stacked outside in the halls fighting to fund reelection committees, so they can get the best deal … (full text The Idea).

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About: Our mission is to transform the public’s relationship to the monetary and economic policies that govern our lives. Our platform is structural reform of the financial industry. We will change the American financial industry from one that skirts and dictates laws to reap false profits for the few at the expense of the many into one that takes its proper place as a facilitator of general prosperity. We demand a financial industry that does not actively work against the interests of the public but that is stable and secure, prudent in risk, and manageable in failure. 

What is A New Way Forward?

  • This project is not funded or initiated by any organization. The website enabling the movement is run by Tiffiniy Cheng and ProsperityAgenda.US. Local organizers make decisions about local events and strategy through a national listserv. The structure is decentralized and open. The individuals who helped to bring the campaign together in our earlier days are Zephyr Teachout, Donny Shaw, Joe Costello, Morgan Knutson (amazing designer), Nicholas Reville, and Tiffiniy Cheng. The individuals and organizations who have signed onto ANWF”s structural reform platform have been instrumental in launching this project. See who is working hard to change the system on our Supporters and Buzz page.

What does A New Way Forward Want?

  • We want Congress to step up to the plate and restructure the financial system. We demand an end to taxpayer bailouts without solutions for working-class America; policies that address the problem of too big to fail; reorganization so that the financial elite who managed us into this crisis are not in charge as we try to fix it, and we believe banks should be broken up—decentralized—and sold back to the private market with strong new regulatory and antitrust rules in place. More details about our goals are on our idea page.

What do you plan to do to achieve your goals?

  • The first thing is to bring people together at rallies and forums to show support for each other in the foreclosure and financial crisis and to realize our structural reform platform. We continue to hold small group meetings to develop plans for alternatives like foreclosure and mortgage intervention, public education, bulk refinancing with community and local banks, and pressure on our political process. We will be identifying sponsors of legislation and lobbying to support that legislation once it is sponsored. We also plan to expand beyond the initial 60 groups and hope to have chapters in hundreds of cities around the country.

It sounds good, but do your proposals have support from economists?

  • Yes! Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman supports letting the banks be resolved when failing. MIT Professor Simon Johnson, Joseph Stiglitz and Willem Buiter have been leading the argument for reorganization, and Nassim Taleb argued last week in the Financial Times that “nothing should ever become too big to fail.” For more intellectual background, and a full list of supporting individuals and groups, visit our idea page. We started this project when The Baseline Scenario clearly laid out an exit strategy for this economic crisis with the public interest in mind. They made a clear case that structural change was possible and worthwhile for our economic and public well-being.

Why is it necessary? Doesn’t Congress know that people are unhappy?

  • All of the responses to the financial crisis have been led by the very people who caused the crisis in the first place. Banks have spent millions lobbying for self-serving “recovery” plans. Nervous politicians worry that nationalization sounds socialist and that our economy must be run by the financial elites. Until people stand up and demand a new way forward, we will continue to spend citizen money on bad practices. Join us!

The Volunteer Organizers Who Fight for a Fair Financial System:

A New Way Forward is made up of volunteers all over the country. These people are leading the charge and do an amazing job in their city and in this campaign for a participatory political economy. Many of these people have never organized before – they just signed up for an event or started helping out in their state. We’re already over 11,000 people strong, email us to do something.

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