Works of art are never finished . . .

  • I just received a nice query that prompted such a long response that I’ve decided to post both here: 
  • Anne Says:
    March 2, 2008 at 5:06 pm   Ellen: I’m still reading the first edition of your book (and I am so grateful for the clarity of it all; what a welcome education). Are you able to quickly summarize what topics are in the new version that are not in the original? Any hint on the topic of your new book? Many thanks for all this work…what a service.
  •          Ellen Says:                                                                            Thanks Anne! I’m still revising actually; my current book was published by print on demand through Lightning Source and Amazon, but I’m doing a real print run that will be available hopefully in about a month, which will have a long postscript bringing the book up to date since the market crashed in the summer of 2007. Besides bringing the book current, I’ve tried to weed out those errors that are critic-bait. I had to rush to print in the summer when I wasn’t completely satisfied with it, because the market was about to tip and I wanted to join in the fray with the commentators. Works of art are never finished, but we writers sometimes hide behind that and never get anything in print! Dickens set the standard; he was desperately poor and had mouths to feed, and he published a lot. “Publish or perish” was literal for him. I won’t perish but my country might — my country which I love despite all its current travails. That was what inspired me actually. My relatives are from Pennsylvania, and in my youth I loved to read about Benjamin Franklin and Abraham Lincoln and our stirring roots. Then I lost faith during the ’60s and ’70s, with the charges of “Ugly American” and the harm we had wrought on the Third World. Then when I learned that it wasn’t “us” and that it could be fixed — that the Founding Fathers were right and we just hadn’t tried it yet — I got excited again, and had to write it up. I’m itching to be done with this revision so I can get back to writing articles. You can write an article in a week and get it out and be in the fray and get feedback; I love that. The Internet has changed everything. On my new book . . . which one were you thinking of? I’m doing new editions of some earlier books on health and the politics of medicine. One called “Forbidden Medicine” with a new Foreword should be out in about 2 weeks. My concern is that we’re rushing headlong into paying for Modern Medicine for All without examining whether we really want it imposed on us. The oil/banking monopoly and the medical/drug cartel have the same roots. I’d also like to write a sequel to “Web of Debt” titled “Compound Interest: Weapon of Financial Mass Destruction.” I started one with a Mary Poppins theme but may not be able to sustain it for a whole book; it may have to be an article. (The Banks family, you know; “tuppence in the bank” or “feed the birds”? ) I’d also like to do a short 100-page summary of, or sequel to, “Web of Debt” called “Bankrupt in the Emerald City: How the Wizards of Finance Stole the American Dream and How We Can Get It Back.” That was actually my original title, and a friend did some really nice artwork for it; it just needs some new text!  Soon I’ll summarize the changes in my revised updated “Web of Debt” and post them on a page to the right on this blog.
  • 7 Responses

    1. Ellen: Thanks for such an interesting and informative response…really appreciated. Everything you’re working on sounds desperately needed. I was particularly struck with the 100-page summary/sequel to Web of Debt + articles because limited time and attention are the biggest roadblocks with folks I talk to.

      It’s not that people aren’t terribly concerned about the debt and ecological situations–they most definitely are–but economics and monetary policy seem so overwhelming and complex (not to mention deathly boring and arcane) that it becomes paralyzing. A 500-page book just adds to the daunted feeling. So I think the summary/sequel and article route would be ideal–even essential–for building critical mass.

      At this point I myself can hardly bear to hear any more about the impending ecological and global financial catastrophes; I want and need the alternatives and proposed solutions so that even in the face of the most alarming statistics, I can focus on the path through and forward. That’s what keeps me sane.

      I try to read enough to understand why the mainstream/status quo is making things worse rather than better but the second I get that, I want/need to go for the alternatives and action steps on the individual, local, (bio)regional, national, and international levels. So at the moment, after reading the first few chapters, I have skipped to the last two sections of your book to immerse myself in the “way out.”

      It is such a relief to be able to turn to writers like you to help me wend my way through these arcane minefields. Unfortunately, I know way too many people who simply won’t go this book route, so all you are doing to reach this massive group of people will surely pay off in critical ways.

      P.S. I admit I haven’t read your books on the medical field. I’m appalled at the idea of mandatory health insurance, but wonder what you think of the single-payer ideas. If you don’t want to divert to that issue here, especially given that I haven’t read what you’ve already written, that’s fine. I’ll get to it.

    2. Hi Anne, thanks for your comments! Inspires me to keep working. I think single-payer is the best of the health coverage ideas. What I’m particularly focused on though is the harm done by pharmaceuticals; the fact that there are excellent natural alternatives that have been suppressed or overlooked; and the concern that once we’re all in their national insurance system, we will all have to go for annual testing, vaccinations, etc. that are actually more hazardous than helpful.

    3. Ellen:

      Thanks for your wonderful “Web of Debt.” I was just starting to lurk around the monetary reform websites when the credit crunch hit, and I was anxious to get some up-to-date commentary from the “GreenbacK” perspective. When I saw your book on Amazon, I immediately purchased three of them–one for me, and two to circulate among friends.

      Question: I have Green party connections and a call has been put out for a 300-word, clarion call for monetary reform, to be included in one of the candidate’s position papers (not at liberty right now to say which candidate). Stephen Zarlenga has provided his American Monetary Act language to the national Green platform writing process, and of course his work is excellent.

      What I like about your policy discussion in Web of Debt is that it provides a range of options, some more “radical” than others. Do you have any suggestions/language that might make the call for action a little more open-ended, and not strictly bound to the AMA (as much as I like that proposal)?

      Thanks so much.

    4. Google Thomas Greco. His writing alone is a big step in the right direction.

      Three websites lead the pack of many others in conveying alternative monetary models.

      reinventingmoney dot com
      altruists dot org /downloads/by_subject/money/
      and complementarycurrency dot org/materials.php

      A search for “Levi Philos” and “JCarvingblock” will get you some serious writing. I’ve been in this stuff for close to twenty years.

      Robert Carroll at “Debt Money, Ancient Meme” was my first teacher.

      Levi Philos

    5. Thanks. Yes I know Tom Greco and have read his fine work. Ellen

    6. Hi Ellen,

      Two things:

      Firstly, did you have anything to do with an audio series called, “Wizards of Money?” The parallels are so striking that it doesn’t seem like coincidence.

      Secondly, I really like your finance work, but I cringe when I read the stuff about flu shots and mercury. There is so much misinformation on so many crank websites on these and similar topics. Please avoid discrediting yourself by associating with the myriad conspiracy theory flakes that are out there. It will make you easier to dismiss by your enemies.

      For instance, you state that flu vaccines “only target one strain.” But, if you spent about 30 seconds researching on Google, you would know that they actually contain three strains. Mistakes like this reflect poorly on your credibility. Please be very careful, I would hate to see you dismissed as just another internet crank.

    7. Response to Mark — I sent a proposal, which I think I’ll also post on a “page” here, just to maximize the effort!

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