Successful organizations start with people firmly committed to a set of core values, which cannot be compromised without weakening the organization. CESJ’s strength, unity and programs flow from our founding principles, agreed upon by consensus from our first meeting on April 7, 1984. Our core values were developed to guide us in our work, to attract others sharing these values and to serve as the very basis of CESJ’s existence.
As an organization open to all people, we think that our core values, once understood, are universally appealing. We see this reflected in the broad diversity of the backgrounds of those who come together because of these shared values. The essence of our founding principles has not changed from the founding of CESJ. But, as we discuss them together and with others, we will continue to refine and clarify our values by consensus. The following are CESJ’s Core Values>>
In pursuing our core values and carrying out our mission, we learned early in CESJ’s organizational development that, like all our institutions, every one of us is imperfect. The act of social justice — organizing with others to perfect the social order — is not easy. There will always be conflicts and problems that arise, just because we are human beings with different strengths, weaknesses, personalities and perspectives. Thus, to guide us in our interactions with other human beings, within and outside our organization, CESJ developed the following Code of Ethics>>.
These basic principles define who we are as an organization, and shape our understanding of the world, of human nature, of the barriers to full human development, and of how we believe human systems can be changed to operate for the good of each individual within them.
We believe that a free and just social order begins with the dignity, sovereignty and development of each human person, and that political democracy must rest on a foundation of economic democracy (“every citizen an owner”).
We believe that the real enemies of human progress, freedom and justice are not primarily bad people, but bad ideas. As a result of defective ideas:
Conversely, good ideas are the catalyst to economic growth and human development. Our goal is to get the principles and logic of the Just Third Way, Binary Economics and Capital Homesteading for every citizen into the marketplace of ideas.
Our message is that neither socialism nor capitalism provides a sufficiently moral alternative for building true economic justice for every human being. We believe there is a “just third way.”