Economics: What would Jesus do?

You won't get a good economic outcome for society unless when you have freedom of choice, free will, economically, you have the morality of a bracelet on your wrist, economically saying, "What would Jesus do with this money?" If you don't have that, free markets are useless. And what he said is we need Catholic economics where everyone has a moral band around them saying, "Of course, I can speculate on this and make money doing that, but that will make other people poorer and hungrier, and that's a stupid thing to do. So I'm going to take the money which I've got, and use that freedom in a way to make the world better."

Michael Every

I'm not sure about Catholic or even Christian, but some form or spirituality or religion or other constraining mechanism certainly seems necessary to me if we're going to have some form of market economy yet retain fairness to both people and planet.

But he also follows this with:

That's what Schumpeter said before he died and we ignore it completely and we are never going to get there unless we have a moral revolution where everyone suddenly changes their mindset. That's not going to happen. So what's the best solution that isn't that? That's what I'm trying to say.

So, do we need a moral revolution, and if we do, then where will it come from? If that is not possible or likely then I'm not sure how we get to a planet-and-life-friendly economy.

Finally, perhaps this assumes everyone settles on the same or similar moral out look. Is it possible for that to happen again? Is it possible to encourage a spiritual view of the world and how brad a scope would that have? Would everyone end up in broadly the same place (many religious and spiritual practises seem to have a lot of common ground)? Or would differences in world view end up giving us something close to what we currently have? Well, I guess it could hardly be worse than what we have so perhaps it is something to strive for.

You might find it interesting to read further into G. K. Chesterton and "Distributism" if the idea of a Catholic economics takes your fancy. Or perhaps E. F. Schumacher and his book "Small is Beautiful" if you'd prefer a Buddhist economics. Perhaps other spiritually inspired economic theories exist, it would be interesting to find them.