The Australian banking and financial system is in deep crisis. The Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Financial Services industry has revealed a deep culture of “dishonesty and greed” in the sector.
Behind these crimes lie decades of neoliberal corporatisation and deregulation of the banking and financial sector, by Labor and Liberal governments.
We need a major national campaign to take back the wealth that has been stolen from us over decades. A nationalised banking system could provide a massive funding base to revive the ailing public sector, including for spending on public health, education, transport, housing and sustainable energy.
And the best way of avoiding any new public banking system management becoming corporatised and bureaucratic is ensuring that control is firmly in the hands of an elected board, representing employees and the community. Making the banking sector democratic and transparent is the only hope we have of tackling the problem — the private ownership of the financial institutions which control our wealth.
This pamphlet, consisting of articles originally published in the socialist newspaper Green Left Weekly during 2017-18, is intended to provide information to assist a community movement to “Nationalise the Big Four banks, under workers’ and democratic control.” Such a movement could be a step in the direction of building a genuine, democratic socialist society of the future.