The Mythology of Money
You learn the myth at a young age and it is continually reinforced on your consciousness for the rest of your life. It is the background illusion that makes day to day existence possible. It is the story that holds up the system. They teach it in school and on television and in the movies. If you do not believe the story, they will say you are crazy. Atheists don’t believe in God, but they believe in the myth. What is the myth? Money is a real thing.
Yeah, well, so is God… sort of… metaphorically speaking. The belief in God was real enough to serve as the foundational principle of an economic system that lasted for hundreds of years. Religion was the glue that held the economy together. Nowadays, the belief in God is optional. Instead, the belief in the reality of money is the foundational principle of the economic system. The myth of money is the glue that holds the modern economy together.
According to the myth, money is a thing out there in the world that humans can gather or collect or earn or find. Some people or institutions have lots of it, some people have smaller amounts and some people have very little or none. The story, however, is a little vague in explaining how people ended up with the money that they have now. Some people suggest that the present distribution of money is the result of evolution (they earned it in the great competition) while others suggest that it is the result of God’s plan or design. Really though, they tend to avoid the topic all together. You cannot even mention it in polite society. You can, of course, argue until you are blue in the face about the re-distribution of money. Liberal vs. conservative…. But you can’t talk about the distribution of money in the first place. We are just supposed to accept the reality that there are trillions and trillions of these things out there called money and some people and institutions have it and some don’t. That is just the way it is. You better believe it.
But what if you don’t? What if you don’t believe the myth about money but instead understand the truth about money.
In reality, money is the symbolic representation of your legal right to use economic value within the jurisdiction of the government that backs the money. In a democratic society, the value of money would be determined by an agreement between citizens. In other words, money is part of a social contract and it is used as a tool to facilitate the exchange of goods and services. As such, all citizens have access to the flow of money based upon the same basic formula. But I do not believe any such democratic society exists anywhere on earth. Instead what we have is oligarchic money supply systems. Money is used as a weapon to enslave the masses instead of as a tool to facilitate fair trade.
The same structure is used by nation states all around the world. It was originally designed by the Roman Empire and was modified by the Europeans but it is now the Americans taking the lead in spreading it world wide. It is THE mechanism that allows for the domination of indigenous local cultures by the global corporate culture.
Every nation state has an evolving amount of economic value available within its borders. In other words, old economic value gets used while new economic value is created. The distribution of money determines who gets to use the economic value that is available. A central authority controls the money supply. Theoretically, they add new money to the system by investing in projects for the benefit of the nation and subtract money from the system through taxes. Through the investment in certain activities and the taxation of other activities, the central authority shapes the economy, culture and way of life of the nation state. That is called government. It is the way things work.
Sometimes governments are monarchies, sometimes governments are dictatorships and sometimes governments are nominal democracies or republics. But it doesn’t matter. Money is always created at the center and passed downward to the citizens. If you ever run for state or federal office here in the US, it soon becomes apparent that your primary mission as a senator or congressman is not to make laws but to beg for money from the central authority on behalf of your district.
But if money is the symbolic representation of your legal right to use economic value, why is it distributed to the state or district from the outside instead of created within the state or district itself? Seem like a strange question? Can we get to the root of the question. Where does money come from? How is it made? When new money is added to the system, who adds it and who gets it? New money is obviously added to the system all the time. How much is a loaf of bread? How much was a loaf of bread ten years ago or twenty years ago?
They play the same game in every country I have ever traveled in. You can trade US dollars for the local currency on the black market or at banks or public exchanges. Many foreign currencies have lots of zeroes as governments and central banks add more and more currency to their system without increasing economic value inside their jurisdictions. This causes inflation as each individual piece of currency is worth less and less. Some governments even have to subtract zeroes from the currency because at some point it becomes ridiculous. I once paid 38,000 Zimbabwe dollars for a fast food cheese burger in Harare.
I have not yet visited a nation state that has a democratic money supply system. In my experience, there are only oligarchic systems. Money is created at the top and passed downward through the channels of the hierarchy until it eventually reaches the general public where it gets passed around. The relative cost of things in each nation state is dependent upon the amount of currency getting passed around and the availability of economic value. Behind it all is the US dollar.
The Bretton Woods conference after WWII, established the structure that essentially rules most of the world’s economic value today. Under this structure, the IMF and World Bank treat “independent” nation states in much the same way that the Federal Reserve treats the different states and communities in the U.S.. With the power to tighten or loosen the money supply and the means to direct currency flows, the central authority imposes poverty to guarantee compliant laborers and access to natural resources for multi-national corporations.
It doesn’t have to be that way. People could stop believing in the oligarchs’ money and create democratic money to pass around instead. With universal access to basic economic rights, people would have an economic incentive to work together in voluntary associations and co-ops to make their communities and the world in general a better place instead of being forced to get a “job” in order to survive.
In the last thirty years or so, the oligarchs in charge of the money supply have used the mechanism of “financial services” to direct excessive amounts of currency flow towards national security (war), fossil fuel extraction, information manipulation (propaganda) and domestic security (prisons and police). If you want to “succeed” in the modern world, those are good industries to get a “job” in. The troubling world we are living in today is largely the result of those unwise investments. The direction of currency flow towards the above mentioned “investments” was not somehow the manifestation of the people’s democratic will. It was the decisions of the oligarchs because they wanted to exert more control over “citizens/subjects”.
What is the difference between democratic money and oligarchic money? Democratic money is based upon a social contract between the people participating in the economic system. Oligarchic money is created by governments and corporations (banks approved by the fed) and lent with interest to the people participating in the economic system.
Democratize the money supply!
The non-violent economic revolution starts now…
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