What would possibly happen if the monetary system totally collapsed? We talk about the dollar not being of value, or the pound losing value, or the dinar being of more value, but the only reason that any of these have value is the power of trade. Even gold is only of value if someone wants it. If our world were to be driven not by want, but by need, which would you choose. . . a ounce of gold or food? If you need food, it will be of most value. If you need shelter, it is of value. Once we have all we “need”, we come to “want”.
If we had not had an artificial monetary means of trade, living in towns and cities far away from land to grow food, and areas to gather needed supplies, would have been impractical. Without developing a universal, although artificial, method of trade, we would have remained in rural areas where neighbours would help each other. The family with chickens would trade with the family that had lumber. Like in farming communities, helping each other would assure that needs would be met.
Some then say, “But you have some who would steal from others and take what they needed.” This problem exists with and without an artificial monetary system.
I remember watching a fictional television series called “Tera Nova” where a community was organized much the way described in the book, “Walden Two.” People each contributed to an organized community where the needs of all were met. Today in the real world groups, like the Amish, still live in this manner with mutually accepted rules.
by Rory Fleming Richardson
What of the people who want more independence? The many other social structures, from the homestead to nomads, could still exist as they have in the past with limited or no money. Our differences demand that there be different structures to match culture, history, and values. The ability for any system of trade to function requires some degree of cooperation and willingness to consider the other party’s needs.
We have, for thousands of years, held gold to be of universal value. Yet in the final analysis it is not something that in itself will fill a need. You can not eat or drink it, and it’s value is only because someone “wants it”. We have lived in the mythology of money for so long we have almost forgotten how to live without it. Rather than put energies into finding ways for all to become freer from daily struggles to survive (i.e., free energy, universally available health care), we have developed a system which demands that some people have almost nothing, while others can use political power, or other means of influence, influence to gain untold wealth. Any system which moves individuals away from universal values of honesty, respect, and caring for one’s fellow human beings will eventually collapse. When we lose these values, we find ourselves fostering forms of slavery. We focus on differences rather than our commonalities. We create a class system which fosters the traits of jealousy, greed, and hate. We fall into power struggles like children fighting over a toy.
Perhaps it is time for us to find ways of returning to values of living together in peace, kindness, love, hope, mutual support, and respect, applying these values not only to each other, but also to the other creations of nature and our very planet.