Norman G. Kurland, J.D.
Washington, DC - USA
Dr. Kurland is a lawyer-economist, pioneer of employee stock ownership
plans (ESOPs) and a leading global advocate for “the Just Third Way.” This
post-scarcity model of economic personalism transcends both capitalism
and socialism by combining free markets with the democratization of
economic power and capital ownership.
He serves as President of the Center for Economic and Social Justice
(CESJ), an all-volunteer, non-profit think tank headquartered in Arlington,
Virginia. Dr. Kurland co-founded CESJ with Fr. William Ferree and other social and economic justice
advocates in 1984 (www.cesj.org). CESJ is a strategic partner with the Descendants of American Slaves for
Economic and Social Justice (www.das4esj.org) in St. Louis, Missouri. Dr. Kurland also co-founded in 1982
and heads Equity Expansion International, Inc., an “investment banking firm for the 99%.” EEI implements
“Just Third Way” financing strategies around the world to turn non-owners into owners, through access to
capital credit (www.eei-consultants.com).
He is a co-founder of the Coalition for Capital Homesteading
(www.capitalhomestead.org), the Canadian-based Global Justice Movement (www.globaljusticemovement.org), and
the Unite America Party (www.uniteamericaparty .org) launched in 2014.
He has taught binary economics and expanded ownership policy reforms in privatization seminars
around the world, including the International Law Institute in Washington, D.C. In 1985, President Reagan
appointed Dr. Kurland as deputy chairman of the bipartisan Presidential Task Force on Project
Economic Justice, to promote economic democratization through Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP)
reforms in Central America and the Caribbean (https://youtu.be/06vP84SqnS4).
Dr. Kurland was a close colleague for eleven years of the late Louis O. Kelso (father of binary economics
systems theory, inventor of the ESOP and the co-author with the Aristotelian-Thomist philosopher Mortimer
J. Adler of The Capitalist Manifesto, 1958 and The New Capitalists: A Proposal for Freeing Economic Growth
from the Slavery of Savings,1961). With Kelso, Dr. Kurland co-founded in 1968, and served as executive
director of, the Institute for the Study of Economic Systems. He later became Washington Counsel for Kelso’s
investment banking firm. Collaborating with Kelso, Kurland authored and lobbied the first and subsequent
ESOP legislative initiatives in the U.S. Congress (The New York Times, 1/6/74, Sec. 3, pp. 1, 6).
Before joining Kelso, Dr. Kurland was Director of Planning of the Citizens Crusade Against Poverty (1965-
68), a national coalition headed by the labor statesman Walter Reuther. Before that, he served as a Federal
government lawyer for the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare on welfare and education issues
He then joined the general counsel’s office of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (1962-1964)
where he became deeply involved as a civil rights investigator in the Mississippi “one-person, one-vote”
movement. Kurland later was hired to join the core group shaping grassroots economic empowerment
initiatives in President Johnson’s “War on Poverty” (1964-1965).
In March 1965, while engaged in Federal funding of Community Action Programs in California and
Arizona communities, Kurland was introduced to Kelso’s revolutionary “Just Third Way” alternative to
monopoly capitalism, coercive collectivism and Keynesian “Welfare State” solutions to poverty. He left the
Federal Government, reversing his earlier support for poverty expedients like Milton Friedman’s “Negative
Income Tax” and the “Guaranteed Annual Income.” Kurland shifted the focus of his life’s mission to addressing
unjust structural barriers in the world’s monetary, credit and tax systems that bar at least 90% of Americans and over 99% of
humanity from equal ownership and economic empowerment opportunities.
Armed with the Kelso-Adler principles of economic justice and Kelso’s market-based, limited
government version of economic democracy, Kurland and his fellow “architects of the future” would
challenge ideologues and academics of the left and the right with a radical centrist solution to the
economic root sources of war, global terrorism, class conflict, oppressive and corrupt political elites,
underdevelopment, rising unemployment, crime and widespread poverty and hopelessness.
Dr. Kurland has lectured and consulted on expanded capital ownership in over 30 countries,
including South Africa, Egypt, Israel, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, China, South
Korea, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Costa Rica, Guatemala, the United
Kingdom, France, Russia, Italy, Hungary and the Czech Republic and the Vatican.
He was the principal architect of several model ESOPs and legal systems for expanding ownership in
the United States and internationally, including: the first ESOP and worker shareholders association
in the developing world at the Alexandria Tire Company in Egypt; the “Economic Democracy Act”
(formerly, the “Capital Homestead Act”), a comprehensive program of national monetary, tax and
inheritance reforms for growing the economy and universalizing capital ownership opportunities for
every child, woman and man; the for-profit “Citizens Land Development Cooperative” and
“National Natural Resources Cooperative/Bank” (for sustainable land development with citizen
ownership, governance, and sharing of profits from land leasing and rising land values); the “Capital
Ownership Account” (for providing every citizen with access to interest-free capital credit for
acquiring ownership shares in profitable companies expanding and adding technological and system
innovations); the Homeowners Equity Corporation (for turning renters into owners of homes subject
to mortgage foreclosure); and “Justice-Based ManagementSM”(a system for applying Kelsonian
principles of economic justice to build participatory ownership cultures in the workplaces and
governing boards of business corporations and cooperatives).
Business Week described Kurland as “the resident philosopher of ESOP in the capital” (4/15/85,
p.108). He received CESJ’s first Kelso-Ferree Lifetime Achievement Award, an honor he shares with
the late Senator Russell Long, legendary champion of ESOP on Capitol Hill. Dr. Kurland has authored
numerous articles on the Just Third Way, binary economics, capital homesteading and related concepts
for universalizing access to capital ownership. He authored five chapters in the 1994 compendium
Curing World Poverty: The New Role of Property (John H. Miller, ed., Social Justice Review), including
“The Abraham Federation: A New Framework for Peace in the Middle East.” He was the principal
author of CESJ’s comprehensive economic reform agenda, Capital Homesteading for Every Citizen: A
Just Free Market Solution for Saving Social Security (Economic Justice Media, 2005). His most important
article, “A New Look at Prices and Money: The Kelsonian Binary Model for Achieving Rapid Growth
Without Inflation,” was published by the Journal of Socio-Economics (Vol. 30, 2001).
Dr. Kurland was awarded a Doctor of Laws degree in 1959 on a full scholarship from the University
of Chicago, where he studied law and economics and received the Walter Wheeler Cook Prize for
legislative drafting. He received his B.A. degree with honors in 1952 from the University of
Connecticut, where he co-founded the first intercultural fraternity in the State of Connecticut and was
awarded membership in the Phi Kappa Phi scholarship society. Upon finishing his undergraduate work,
he received a direct commission in the U.S. Air Force, where he earned his wings as an electronics
countermeasures officer, commanded two radar installations in Japan, and then was assigned to a B-47
bomber wing in Strategic Air Command before entering law school.
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