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This book describes the explosion of debt across the global economy and related requirement of political leaders to pursue exponential growth to meet the demands of creditors and investors. It presents a historical account of the modern origins of capitalist debt by looking at how commercial money is produced as debt in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. The book identifies the ways in which the control, production, and distribution of money, as interest-bearing debt, are used to discipline populations. It focuses on the histories of the development of the Bank of England and the establishment of permanent national debt with the intensification and expansion of debt, as a "technology of power", under colonialism in a global context. The book investigates the modern origins of debt as a technology of power by focusing on war, the creation of the "national" debt, and the capitalization of the organized force of the state. It addresses the consequences of modern regimes of debt and puts forward proposals of what needs to be done, politically, to reverse the problems generated by debt-based economies. The book utilizes the term "intensification" rather than spread or proliferation to think about both the amplification and spatial expansion of debt as a technology of power during the era of European colonialism and resistance. Finally, it also presents a convincing case for the 99" to use the power of debt to challenge present inequalities and outlines a platform for action suggesting possible alternatives.

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War, National Debt, and the Capitalized State

conquests (O’Brien 1988; Brewer 1989). But this could not have had any effect and, indeed, would have destroyed the economy without an expansive monetary supply first occasioned by the Bank of England issuing loans originally backed by silver coinage (Carruthers 1996; Davies 2002; Wennerlind 2011). What is often forgotten is that before the sovereign was made subordinate to Parliament, financing war was the personal responsibility of royal authority. With relatively strict limits placed upon taxation, and with a limited money supply, this meant that if the sovereign

in Debt as Power
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War economies, peace economies and transformation

with explosive media reports, dramatic Hollywood recreations, countless non-governmental organisation (NGO) programmes and masses of academic research reveal an increasing concern over these economies, and have in turn led to a growing interest in and need for policies which limit the degree to which commodities can be used to either finance war, or become a dominant motivation for individuals to take up arms. Seen as a major threat to peace, stability and development, the international community has increased its focus on creating and improving upon policies which

in Building a peace economy?
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—which was war—is already stamped with the financial machinations of the Dutch empire, Italian city-states of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, the Atlantic slave trade, and the conquest of North America and India by capitalized joint-stock companies such as the East India Company. The main argument in this chapter is that the invention of a funded long-term national debt was principally born not to finance wars to aggrandize the power of the Crown per se but more importantly to aggrandize the power of what Justin Rosenberg (1994) has called “the empire of civil

in Debt as Power