06 November 2011

Personal credit cards

Shemittat kesafim might be about moving from debt to equity over the six year cycle. 
Shemittat kesafim would be about moving from a personal debt to a corporate relationship. As the shemitta year approaches, the volume of debt goes down and the volume of charitable grants goes up. The gemach funds should begin to kick in as the shemitta year approaches so that going into the year there would be no endebtedness among the people. The point isn't to stop the debt markets, the point is to stop the exercise of personal credit. 
  • The choice of terms in Deuteronomy 15:2 – yesha yad and yigash – and the distinction in Deuteronomy 15:3 between the Israelite and the nakhri, the stranger, indicates an inclination to move obligations over to the object and the impersonal and away from the person and the relationship. 
  • Either equity or corporate debt should move to replace personal debt. 
  • It's about how much or how little personal credit cards would be able to be used. It's about personal credit vs business credit. 
ChZ"l didn't understand the law so they overdid it and then figured out a way to dismantle the law altogether. Prozbul is an admission of rabbinic failure rather than, as legend has it, an emergency measure instituted by Hillel to redeem an unworkable system. 

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