AFJM’s second annual membership meeting was held on Sunday, July 19, 2020 over Zoom. The focus of the meeting was the ratification of the proposal for a National Monetary Commission of Inquiry. The proposal was enthusiastically approved by the membership and provided an excellent backdrop for a general discussion among members on strategy and tactics for moving ahead towards real monetary reform.
The proposal had been developed by the Legislative Action Committee under the leadership of Joe Bongiovanni and brought to the AFJM Board. The Board endorsed it and has been eager to share it with the membership at large. Joe talked us through the Resolution, emphasizing 1) the recognized failures of the current bank money system, 2) the people’s right to exercise the Constitution’s money powers, and 3) Congressional abrogation of the peoples’ rights by giving the money power to private banks.
There is now a button on the AFJM website directing users to the Resolution and to a petition people can sign in support of it.
With regard to action now needed, Joe urged each of us to shoulder a share of the present task of bringing the call to the Commission forward. So far, only the Green Party has endorsed the Resolution. We need to bring it to the attention of opinion shapers, of members of Congress and of people in general.
Monetary reform is a revolution; Joe observed that a revolution is occurring with people in the streets and that revolution is 99% opportunity.
During the vigorous discussion that followed, Joe emphasized that we need to make our case for the Resolution with all representatives, regardless of party. Don’t assume how people will respond. The Resolution only asks for an inquiry and that the inquiry include the option of sovereign (Just) money reform. The resolution is not an end in and of itself, and its adoption would not result in monetary reform. Congressional commissions are not known for their effectiveness in producing change. The Resolution is a tool to help the movement toward reform. If we push it, it can become an important tool, operating toward increased awareness at the Congressional level.
Participation in small groups in breakout rooms provided more opportunity for exchange of ideas. One theme was how bring in younger people into our movement. Karly Enger stressed the need for “intersectional” efforts designed to link with existing movements such as Black Lives Matter and environmental groups. Members were encouraged to use the AFJM Facebook and Twitter pages.
Don’t forget to participate in the ongoing discussions in the AFJM Coffee Houses and get involved with AFJM committee work. The LAC (Legislative Action Committee) will be pushing forward with efforts to get the attention of political leaders. The chair is Joe Bongiovanni. The MMC (Membership and Movement Committee) will be working efforts to expand the membership of AFJM. The chair is Sue Peters. The CWC (Communications and Website Committee) will be working to expand the reach of AFJM. The Chair is Paul Lebow. The FFC (Finance and Fundraising Committee) will be working on developing revenue sources for our collective efforts.
Attention was also brought 1) to the publication of a book containing Spanish translations of key monetary reform articles, a project carried forward by Mark Young, Govert Schuller and Mary Sanderson (see here), and 2) the ongoing efforts of Virginia Hammon with the How We Pay project. See her website at www.howwepay.us.
The Membership Meeting closed with an opportunity for all participants to indicate what they would work on this next year and to share their personal characterizations of the movement of which we are all a part. Looking ahead, passion, excitement and thoughtfulness was shared. AFJM is growing and has an important role to play in shaping the future of the country and of the world.