The crowdfunding bank, or knab, is a proposed core VIAAC subsystem that will facilitate several of its services as well as interaction with the outside world. Its primary goal is to take in deposits, perhaps supplemented by an initial, third-party bank or credit union loan, in order to eliminate recurring payments for its members. It does so using strategic funding and purchasing to turn rents or recurring costs, into smaller, one-time costs, known as sunk costs. The process is called decapitalization.
Capitalization is the discounting of present value based on expected future earnings, or a claim on future earnings. Capital is a form of power that capitalists accumulate over other people. The knab's primary goal is to reverse this process, by identifying expected future needs that will be capitalized, and discounting the present value of potential ways to self-provision for those needs, denying capitalists' claims on earnings from fulfilling them.
The most basic mechanism of the knab works like so:
- The knab receives a request or takes the initiative to identify a recurring cost that could be sunk through the funding of VIAAC organizations or the purchase of (re)productive property (e.g. buying a renewable generator to sink the cost of electricity).
- The knab negotiates a contract with affected parties in which they will agree to continue paying the rent until the loan is repaid.
- The knab proceeds with the funding/purchase, and the repayment period begins.
- The parties may refund the knab the income saved to increase its purchasing power.
A knab in a community in which capitalist power is strong can work by structuring itself as a billpay system. Community members would join the knab and agree to pay their bills through its system. By staggering the payment into the knab and the payment of the bills, the knab can use its temporarily-held funds to transparently decapitalize its members.
With this model, a knab can also grow organically out of the bulk purchasing model. At first, fulfilling demand for basic services can be done more cheaply using bulk purchasing of the service. The savings from doing this can be used for sunk cost funding.
Another advantage of this model is the possibility of adding an insurance service. By having members pay a small additional fee, they can insure themselves and the other members against foreclosure or being cut off from services due to an inability to pay. This could be a powerful supplement to existing foreclosure activism. Edit
Local Banking ModelEdit
A knab which exists in a community in which anti-capitalist market values are strong could issue a local, deflationary currency in order to facilitate local commerce. This would allow the knab to issue loans of unearned money and to exchange much or all of the local legal tender for the new local currency. By holding the community's legal tender in trust, the VIAAC can use alternative currency for internal activities, and legal tender for external activities.
Another possible scheme which would combine bulk purchasing and issuance of local currency would be to take legal tender for purchases through the knab and return a share of SM as the local currency. The small network of people that use the currency significantly reduces the chances of capitalization, especially if the VIAAC members are wary of it.
Property Ownership and Decisions Edit
Funding, once given to the knab, should be considered repayable until spent by the knab. Property bought by the knab should be held in a community commons trust and rights to it distributed through loanership. How much each person contributed should not influence the decision of how the funds are used. That should be done on the basis of decapitalization and sustainability. Considerations based on contribution will preserve irrational hierarchies that VIAACs are looking to eliminate. Decisions should be made democratically or empirically, with aim of the community regaining power over themselves and the ability to self-provision.
Data Collection and Use Edit
A knab is possible and desirable in the early stages of a VIAAC. It is in a good position to collect data for DARMA. In the flow network model, the knab's job is to abstract demand for products or services and fund an effort or purchase
Similar Existing Initiatives Edit
Robin Hood Co-op: http://robinhoodcoop.org/