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The FTT, being proposed by Nobel prize winning economists and leading EU politicians, is a tiny fee on stock market traders and speculators -- a fair way to meet the crisis in public financing.Less than .05%, the tax would be painless to responsible commerce and hit speculators hard, raising a trillion dollars in the next 10 years.
We spent trillions bailing out banks and speculators in 2009 - the very people that caused the crisis - and now our social programs are being asked to pay for it. The people won't accept that, and we have a better way. World leaders are deciding right now on the FTT, let's demand that the speculators who got us into this mess pay to get us out:
While the London violence is inexcusable, so is the crisis in which it is occurring. Three years ago, governments took trillions of dollars of public money to bail out the banks, promising it would save our economies. Now, the markets are in turmoil again, the banker bonuses have returned and no one has been held accountable for the crash. The cost of these failures is being shouldered by us ordinary citizens everywhere -- our communities are enduring huge public spending cuts and zero employment prospects.
The horrific looting and violence in the UK has multiple causes and should not be condoned. But what’s happening there hints at a disturbing trend all over the world -- more and more people are desperate, disenfranchised, and hopeless in the face of brutal cuts. While in Israel and Spain, the widespread public frustration has turned into an overwhelming non-violent mobilisation for change. In the UK, the poorest and most excluded communities have lost even the thinnest thread of respect and hope.
Public frustration is at a boiling point and this proposal could be a game changer. Key economists and a handful of politicians are pushing for it, but to get the FTT approved, we all need to weigh in behind it. It won’t be a silver bullet, but it will create vast sums of money to invest back in our communities. Let's all unite behind this one powerful policy. Click below to sign the petition for the Financial Transaction Tax, and we’ll deliver it to key governments when we reach 500,000 signers:
Collapsing economies inevitably lead us to social and political upheaval and further away from the world we want. Recessions bring protectionism, nationalism, racism, and now our governments are worsening matters by pursuing disastrous policies. Today, by building a movement behind the Financial Transaction Tax, we can draw a line in the sand on catastrophic policies and demand a solution that strengthens communities not corporations, and restores hope and humanity to the world.
Alice, Iain, Emma, Ricken, Stephanie, Pascal, Morgan, and the rest of the Avaaz team
1. The Financial Transaction tax is also often referred to as the Tobin Tax, or the Robin Hood Tax.
Economic uncertainty leading to global unrest, CNBC:
Nothing mindless about rioters, Al Jazeera
EU President says only global "Tobin" tax effective, Reuters
It's time to take the Tobin tax seriously, The Guardian