Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A "Money" Idea

"Or it could involve looking at someone like Benard Lietaer, the Belgian currency specialist who was one of the architects of the Euro. He suggested that you could have a global trading currency that would actually have a negative interest or a demurrage charge, so that the longer you held on to it, the more value it would lose. Then, instead of wanting to hoard it, you would want to share it and get it back into circulation, which might lead to more community-based values." (From an article about Daniel Pinchbeck, by Stephen Mooallem in the June-July, 2009 issue of Interview Magazine, page 118).

One possible response to this idea is the question - "Isn't this what we already have, currency that loses its value? For most of my lifetime the gradual trend is one in which it takes more and more money to obtain something of value. A new car could be purchsed in the 1960s for a couple thousand dollars. Now a new car is likly to cost ten times more. Housing costs at least ten times more than what it did fifty years ago. I understand that if money loses its value one would trade it for something that might not lose value, which is why many have invested in land or real estate in the past, only to find out that that, too can lose some of its value. If sharing it and getting it back into circulation leads to more community-based values, shouldn't there be many examples in recent history? I'd like to hear more about this idea, but so far I'm not quite convinced.

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