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Usury and property rights

conference contribution
posted on 2017-12-06, 00:00 authored by Garrick SmallGarrick Small
Economic theory can be interpreted as a defensive strategy by those with economic power to distract attention from their abuse of that power. To do this it has adopted a methodological perspective that emphasises appearance over reality. A property rights approach can be shown to ground economics in reality by establishing elementary principles relating to the nature of property, trade and money that are objective and knowable. They are also found in the cultural practices of indigenous communities and the expansive phase of ancient civilizations.The most contentious principle for realist economics is usury, pure interest on a money loan. This is shown to also yield to a property rights approach, furthermore, the recent global financial crisis can be interpreted as the confluence of community adoption of dysfunctional economic fundamentals applied to property and reckless usurious lending. The way forward is shown to consist of living within knowable objective moral principles for the ordering of economic life. These may be summarised as the freely willed decision to avoid abusing one’s economic power. Historical and anthropological examples of type of civilized behaviour are listed to demonstrate that it is within the capacity of the human economic actor to act in an adequately self-restrained way in business.


Category 1 - Australian Competitive Grants (this includes ARC, NHMRC)


Parent Title

Economics as if God Matters. Current economic crisis and the church. Usury: cause and effect, a one day symposium held March 19 2011, The Marriott, South Bend, Indiana, USA.

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Start Date



South Bend, Indiana, USA


Fidelity Press

Place of Publication

South Bend, Indiana, USA

Peer Reviewed

  • No

Open Access

  • No

External Author Affiliations

Faculty of Arts, Business, Informatics and Education; Not affiliated to a Research Institute;

Era Eligible

  • No

Name of Conference

Conference on the Current Economic Crisis and the Church