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Nowak, Maria

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Les Echos - France | 28/10/2008

Maria Nowak on a new model of capitalism

In the business paper Les Echos, Maria Nowak, chairwoman of the French Association pour le Droit à l'Initiative Economique (ADIE) calls for the reform of capitalism: "In order to tear down the wall between financial and social economy we must begin to make a distinction, as [historian] Fernand Braudel advocated, between capitalism and the market economy. In his work 'The Dynamics of Capitalism' he quoted [the founder of the former Soviet Union] Lenin, for whom 'capitalism means ... producing for the market ... Ten or twenty large firms are everything, millions of small ones are nothing'. By contrast the market economy is a system that gives everyone an opportunity, because, as Adam Smith advocated, through effective control of civil society the authorities can offer the small actors protection against the attacks of the big ones. ... If we agree with this analysis we must not fall into the temptation of doing things by halves. The agenda for the next major international summit should include not only rules for better risk control, but also rules on the finality of finances that ... serve the interests of all the citizens of the world. ... By democratising access to loans and gearing it towards the real economy and by tearing down the barriers between society, the world of finance and the economy, we would give back to people who are excluded from the working and financial world the right to act on their own economic initiative and help many of them to overcome the crisis."

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