Tuesday, March 3, 2009

People's Bank policy was floated on the blogs

It has been reported that the Welsh Government is looking at establishing a 'People's Bank', generally described as being a not-for-profit community/mutual bank based on Post Office branches. It's an idea that has been championed in the 2007 Plaid Manifesto, by Labour Left MP's (Jon Cruddas noted it in the Guardian) and lefties in Plaid & Welsh Labour in 2008 and by Adam Price last week.

I'm waiting to see some concrete proposals but if this idea does come to fruition, it has a number of important implications- that an idea highly touted on political blogs can eventually become Government policy (even if it wasn't the blogs that made it happen, it still shows how foresighted and relevant the online debate can be); that policy-making from the left is still on the menu; and that the Welsh Government is attempting to shore up social alternatives to the free market banking system, not only through the People's Bank but through the One Wales Government's widespread and consistent support for Credit Unions.

My only criticism is that it should not have taken a crisis to expose how corrupt and unsustainable the model of big business banking is: it has taken thousands of job losses and market stagnation to prove this. And ordinary people will still have to pay the price through the bailout billions.

No comments:

Post a Comment