The People's Jubilee

by Boyd
on Saturday 17 Nov 2012

type: Opinion/Analysis
topic: Community
region: South West

Anyone who has read David Graeber's "Debt the First 5,000 years" now knows what a Jubilee is. Its a cancellation of all debts, usually to commemorate a transfer of political power, and before capitalism there are many instances of it happening. Read the book, its good.

I believe that in Bristol in 2013 we should build a movement that campaigns for a "People's Jubilee": the cancellation of all personal debts to institutions.


Like Occupy's Rolling Debt campaign, but we wouldn't buy the debt, we would force institutions to write it off.

This would also have the side-effect of destroying the main powerbase of the 1% elite whose greed and corruption has been exposed in every one of the institutions that have rule over us.


This Jubilee would not destroy the economy. People would still keep their jobs, the rubbish would still be picked up, taxes collected, the trains would keep on running. Kids would still go to school, policemen would still be on the beat, you could still go on holiday to Ibiza.


We would lose our pensions. There would be (unless it was stopped) capital flight. Businesses would have problems securing investment (until new sources were made available). Thats on the down side.


On the up side, society would be transformed in an instant. Millions would be emancipated from debt slavery, free to live a better life. At a stroke, our society would become one of the fairest and 'spirit levelled' on the planet.


It would not be the answer to all of our problems. Many other things would need to be changed, as well as finding a new way to agree those changes and decide our priorities. It may not be far enough, but its a pretty big step in the right direction.


Lets commemorate our coming emancipation from a rotten system with a People's Jubilee.