Free the People: Justice 101The Batman/Batwoman ProjectUnderstand this basic system change + we can lighten everyone‟s load.Overnight. We need PEACE and we need it now.
Time The Mayan‟s predicted the end of an era – ushering in a new period of peace on earth. But where‟s the peace? The world is a mess. A global financial crisis. Rat race over money and land. Idlenomore, Montreal student protests, Occupy. We‟re inundated with anti-corporate messages. Why? Because there is something inherently wrong in the system. We‟ve acquired so much information in the Information Age, but we haven‟t stopped long enough to use that information for good, especially in the area of justice/the economy. 2013 will be the year of truth, justice + accountability – a new era of peace in society + the economy. Why? Because the internet + social media have shifted the balance of power from big business back to the people – where it should have been all along…And the people are demanding more. They want industry to work for them, not against them.
Martin Luther King Day Yesterday we celebrated a man who lived and breathed the ideals of peace, equality and freedom. From his April 4, 1967 "Beyond Vietnam" speech: “When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, militarism and economic exploitation are incapable of being conquered."
Justice 101 Well, I also have a dream – and I believe it can be accomplished very shortly. I‟m setting the deadline as Valentine‟s Day. As cheesy/consumerist a holiday as that has become, the whole world organizes for a day of love on that day, let‟s stop this sinking capitalist ship for once and for all. Because the end does not justify the means. Stop and look around the world, terrorists (ahem, tourists, I mean). You may be blitzing all over the globe on the company dime but you‟re killing the world. We can‟t keep up. The industry that keeps us the most enslaved to debt? The mortgage industry. An industry with which I‟m intimately familiar.
Unite Yesterday, President Obama urged Americans to unite. And that is truly the key. Once we unite as fellow citizens of a country on one common issue, then we can see fundamental change. And fundamental change is clearly what we need. This is not about politics, this is about maximizing life and minimizing stress. For all people. Allowing people to regain their freedom again. Remember: Human-made problems can be human- fixed. (With a little imagination!)
Perspectives on Justice Perspective is everything. A couple of perspectives: 1. Corporate/Law & Order Preserve the status quo – rarely, if ever, question the capitalist system, especially not its bedrock – the private property system 2. The Hippy Questions the status quo – including the capitalist system and its effects on the people and the planet
Hippies Nowadays, we‟re all hippies. Anti-corporate sentiment is running high and it‟s not going away. We all want a system that puts people first + profits second. But the corporate model – profits first, people second - has been the primary model…Until now. Until the internet + social media have shifted the balance of power in favour of the people.
Change is Good In fact, it is inevitable. “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” – Albert Einstein Human-made problems can be human-fixed. If you have just an ounce of an imagination.
Justice 101 The Western notion of justice is a concept of moral rightness based on ethics, rationality, law, natural law, religion or equity. It is also the act of being just and/or fair. - Wikipedia Goal: Put people first and profits second. Stop the overwhelming debt burden that keeps us all running on this rat race we call life.
The Batman/Woman Project Understand these few things: 1. The people are the majority. So despite what anyone says, they have the power to trump the minority in power. They just do. It‟s simple math. 2. The only way the people can exercise this power is if they unite on one common issue and vote on it. Direct democracy/internetocracy – a new era of accountability and direct civic engagement. Why not? We all have a voice, we all have ideas.
Change.org To vote for change, sign up at Change.org. This is the site that will really help “change the world”. It‟s grassroots all the way, but it will work! Vote on the campaigns by Creative Justice + others
What is the Law? It is a system of rules enforced through social institutions to govern behaviour. It shapes politics, economics, and society in countless ways and serves as a social mediator of relations between people. – Wikipedia. The law affects nearly every aspect of our lives everyday. They are supposed to be aimed at ensuring fairness, so that stronger groups do not use their powerful positions to take advantage of weaker groups.
Can the People Change the Law? In law school, they teach us that the law is an evolving tree. It evolves to meet the needs of people and society and to reflect a greater understanding in society (Wikipedia). Law School Motto - “Through Law to Justice”: The law is meant to be a pathway to justice, not an end in itself. “Each of us has a part in ensuring the law works properly and justice is done” (http://www.justice.gc.ca/eng/dept- min/pub/just/img/courten.pdf).
Principles of Equity When the strict application of the law is too harsh, the law can be supplemented by principles of equity. “Equity is commonly used to „mitigate the rigor of common law‟, allowing courts to use their discretion and apply justice in accordance with natural law.” – Wikipedia One of the Maxims of Equity: Equity will not suffer a wrong to be without a remedy When seeking an equitable relief, the one that has been wronged has the stronger hand.
Natural Law “Natural law is a system of law that is purportedly determined by nature, and thus universal. Natural law is contrasted with positive law ("man-made law”, not "good law";) of a given political community, society, or nation-state, and thus serves as a standard by by which to criticize said positive law.” – Wikipedia “Natural justice has largely been replaced and extended by the more general „duty to act fairly‟.” - Wikipedia
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights Natural law/principles of equity can be pulled from The Universal Declaration of Human Rights: Formally adopted by the U.N. on December 10, 1948 The most universal human rights document in existence, delineating the thirty fundamental rights that form the basis for a democratic society. Today, the Declaration is a living document that has been accepted as a contract between a government and its people throughout the world.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights Article 1.: All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood Article 3.: Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person Article 4.: No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms Full Text: http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/index.shtml
Purpose of Government What is the purpose of the government? “To enable the people of a nation to live in safety and happiness. Government exists for the interests of the governed, not for the governors.” - Thomas Jefferson The government are the lawmakers, so shouldn‟t we just trust them to create policy + laws to fix our problems?
The Issue: An Inherent Conflict of Interest The profit motive has created an inherent conflict of interest between those in government – those entrusted with protecting the interests of the people - and those in the corporate world – those who effectively govern society. The lawyers – those entrusted with promoting ideals of justice - are mostly busy practicing law. They are firmly entrenched in a system that never questions the private property land system.
Above the Law Batman was above the law, but it was for a good cause = to protect the people. The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives agrees that “Parliament (is) no longer the place to fight for a just society” They say “In this current phase of the fight for true democracy, the arena is in the streets, not in the legislatures.” http://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/moni tor/parliament-no-longer-place-fight-just-society
The Need for Reform 3 million Canadians are living in poverty. Children, youth, single parents, Aboriginal Canadians, recent immigrants, people with disabilities and seniors feel the hardest hit. Why? Because we‟ve built up this corporate shield where the poor can‟t access the things they need because it would negatively affect the bottom line. The problem is the bottom line is the wrong line.
The Mortgage Industry The mortgage industry is the industry that enslaves us all to the greatest burden of debt, but it serves no socially useful purpose in society. In fact, throughout history, this industry has been loathed as being ETHICALLY WRONG. By all religions, in fact! There was a little leeway in the Hebrew Scriptures, but even the Jews were punished for staying within those guidelines. If the mortgage industry serves no socially useful purpose in society, in fact it is one of the greatest harms to society, then why does it exist? Is it a necessary evil? No. If we change the model of corporate governance, we can change the industry so that it benefits all of us. Overnight.
Shareholder Model of Corporate Governance Current Model: Bottom Line: Maximize Profits for Shareholders Shareholders = Shareholders people who own Directors & Officers (D&O) Employees shares in mortgage Brokers/Agents/Realtors lending Landlords companies Homeowners (aka Mortgage Holders) Renters Down & Out (D&O)
Shareholder Model of Corporate Governance Even Donald Trump admits that all corporations are pyramids. And that is the problem. The few at the top benefit, while the many at the bottom suffer from the effects of a system that they are effectively cut out of. This was the image the Mayans were trying to get through my thick skull all these years!!! It truly is the key.
Stakeholder Model of Corporate Governance New Model: Bottom Line: Maximize Benefits for all StakeholdersWho are the stakeholders?All people in a country are All stakeholders vote to laystakeholders in the off the mortgage debtmortgage industry, either collectors, eliminatingdirectly as borrowers or mortgage debt at its root.indirectly as renters. Resulting in a benefit to allVirtually, everyone in stakeholders – no mortgagea country. or rent payments ever again. Real estate = common estate; The biggest portion of our debt burden is eliminated. We have time to pursue our dreams again.
Pros of Mortgage Industry Financially benefits the small minority who are shareholders in the mortgage industry Provides jobs to the directors, officers, employees, and mortgage/real estate brokers/agents in the industry Provides income to landlords, with the vast majority of that income going back to the mortgage lenders (until the mortgage is paid down)
Cons of Mortgage Industry Mortgage and rent payments burden all citizens of a country, with the single largest burden of debt that we all face. We spend the majority of our lives working to pay down this debt. But the debt never goes away. The mortgage industry is not serving a socially useful purpose in society. It was considered ethically wrong when it was developed. Now it is considered an atrocity, a system that prevents people from living in foreclosed homes – because we‟ve always done it that way. C‟MON!!! DO YOU SEE HOW WRONG THAT IS??
Political Science 101 The #1 principle in developing good policy: Consider, whether the end justifies the means. In the mortgage industry, the end goal – making $ for the shareholders, providing a small minority with jobs – does not justify the means – enslaving us all to debt for our entire lives. Think of all the social problems that stem from the fact that we all need to make end‟s meet – to pay our mortgage/rent payments
The Ethics of the Mortgage Industry For centuries upon centuries, the mortgage lenders have been criticized in popular culture. The Medieval Times was when Robin Hood was first introduced. Virtually all the common people were opposed to it at the time, but they stuck to its rule. Why were they opposed to it? It violates the basic tenet of all religions – karma – love one another – what you sow, you will reap…
Campaigns Go toCreative Justice‟s Change.org site to vote for fundamental change in the mortgage industry = no more mortgage or rent payments ever again. http://www.change.org/en- CA/organizations/creative_justice Canada United States More countries to be added as the movement spreads
Creative Justice Creative Justice is a Social Justice Think Tank based in Toronto, Ontario. We are a group of independent thinkers committed to proposing real + efficient solutions to solve the global economic crisis. Our vision is to make industry socially useful again. One industry at a time. Be the change you want to see in the world. – Gandhi
Contact Us We welcome your ideas, feedback and questions. Email us at email@example.com Text us at 416-576-8424