The Nature of Money
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26-03-2013, 04:52 PM
Wink RE: The Nature of Money
(26-03-2013 04:26 PM)bbeljefe Wrote:  And no, I've not read Atlass Shrugged. I don't read fiction as a matter of personal preference. I've read some of her non fiction and for the most part, I agree with her.

Well, I think you should read some of her fiction for it might help you to better understand what she was trying to say....or trying to avoid saying. Anyways, we are living in an Ayn Rand world...or haven't you noticed?
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26-03-2013, 05:09 PM
RE: The Nature of Money
Ayn Rand was a romantic little girl who never grew up.

She could never get over the loss of her privileged life in Russia.

She fancied herself as a Philosopher, but her logic was so full of holes, you could drive a cargo train across it sideways.

I know -- I read everything she has published -- fiction and non-fiction and 2 biographies by her disciples.

By the way - Alan Greenspan used to be one of them.

That tells you a lot.
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26-03-2013, 06:56 PM
RE: The Nature of Money
(26-03-2013 04:41 PM)Zat Wrote:  
(26-03-2013 04:26 PM)bbeljefe Wrote:  I don't read fiction as a matter of personal preference

What a sad admission, but it explains a lot.

I used to have a friend who once bragged: "if it is a novel, I have not read it".

I always felt sorry for him.

How pathetic and culturally deprived! Sad
Wow, I hadn't noticed that I was pathetic or culturally deprived. Thanks for letting me know. Perhaps some day you can share with me how you can make such judgements about complete strangers. Wink

The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their right names. - Chinese Proverb
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26-03-2013, 07:05 PM
RE: The Nature of Money
(26-03-2013 12:21 PM)Heathen Wrote:  I like to say that money is not the root of all evil but it sure makes it a lot easier.
The lack of money is the root of all evil - Mark Twain

“I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s.”~Mark Twain
“Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.”~ Ambrose Bierce
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28-03-2013, 08:10 PM
RE: The Nature of Money
(26-03-2013 05:09 PM)Zat Wrote:  Ayn Rand was a romantic little girl who never grew up. ... She fancied herself as a Philosopher, but her logic was so full of holes, you could drive a cargo train across it sideways.


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01-04-2013, 10:19 AM
RE: The Nature of Money
(26-03-2013 05:35 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  And just who and how is THAT going to get decided ? By what SHARED SYSTEM ?

I did not say a "shared system" will decide "that". I was not talking at all about who will decide anything. I was speaking only about how "the system" works, and by "the system" I was referring to the global economy. It currently works as it does partially due to the choices humanity collectively makes, and any future rendition of it will also work as it does partially due to the choices humanity collectively makes.

(26-03-2013 05:35 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  The problem with the desert island is he assumes they all will actually pitch in and do the same level of work. What if someone spends extra time to learn a special skill, and the beer drinking lazy guy does nothing. You want they all get the SAME thing ? It's simplistic nonsense.

Yes, it was a simplistic explanation, but I thought it was clear he was just conveying that an economy on a desert island has vast potential to be extremely different than most currently existing economies.

(26-03-2013 08:33 AM)Zat Wrote:  On a desert island, cut off from civilization, everyone would be busting their asses just to survive, without worrying about who owes whom what.
They don't tolerate slackers but they don't measure contribution with a clinical scale, penny by penny.
They expect everyone to do the best they are capable of and they share equally without wasting an ounce of energy on fighting and arguing over money.

Similar to what Bucky said, this description is purely hypothetical. Given Bucky's objections, might you prefer to in the future just say this is how you think it could work rather than how it would work? That is what you wanted to convey, no?

Either way, what you've expressed here is basically my ideal for moving forward with existence. Rhetorical to support your stated views: We exist as individuals with vastly different abilities and potentials, so why not base our economy on such differences?

(26-03-2013 08:47 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  While I agree with Zat the an enormous amount of time is spent, as opposed to wasted, managing this tool the alternative, bartering was mentioned for one, would take even more. Exponentially more. As in prohibitedly more.

Without a common store of value I don't think any of us would be here on the webz discussing this very subject, we'd be too busy trying to find someone who values our skills (in whatever) and has a banana to exchange for it so we wouldn't starve.

Your claim is impossible for us to verify or disprove, because we can't observe alternatives to history, but can only imagine them. That and the fact nobody is proposing we change history is why I'd say your explanation is irrelevant to the proposed alternative.

(26-03-2013 08:47 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  I'm not saying we can't live without a common store of wealth i.e. money, but we'd be back hunting and gathering, having twelve children to help with the crop and we'd still be fighting amongst our little tribe about the division of labor.

I'm OK with the staus quo, I prefer it to the alternative.

What you say we would be "back" to is entirely hypothetical. You don't know the alternative to the status quo, so your preference is between status quo and an idea of an alternative.

(26-03-2013 09:15 AM)bbeljefe Wrote:  Should we boil things down to not the problem and then see how much gets fixed?

I said nothing about what anybody "should/shouldn't" do. I prefer to let others decide for themselves what they "should/shouldn't" do, so I deliberately avoid using the word "should" unless somebody asks for that specific opinion of mine. If you're sincerely questioning, my answer would be don't boil anything down, but explain things as they objectively/intersubjectively are.

(26-03-2013 09:15 AM)bbeljefe Wrote:  Was the wheel invented because walking with goods on one's back wasn't a problem?

I don't know why the wheel was invented, but I am willing to assume the word "problem" didn't exist when the wheel was invented.

(26-03-2013 09:15 AM)bbeljefe Wrote:  If the goal is to get rid of money, it is either money that is the perceived problem or it is some of the things done with money that is the perceived problem.

Yes, I understand that, and I understood this concept many, many years ago. I didn't ask my rhetorical question to find out what the perceived problem is, though.

I asked my rhetorical question hoping you might contemplate why you even asked Zat how he concluded money is "the problem". Zat didn't state money is "the problem", after all, and I think Zat made it very clear Zat was not blaming money for every single concern mentioned.

Where you perceive "the problem", others might perceive "many problems", and others might not even perceive "a problem". We don't have to label something "the problem" to know we dislike it or want to change it. Sometimes we're looking for "the problem", and sometimes we're observing the other side of the equation without making foregone conclusions.

(26-03-2013 09:15 AM)bbeljefe Wrote:  Money does not complicate trade, it simplifies it. Just like the wheel simplifies the transport of goods.

These statements are generalities.

Imagine two scenarios. In the first, I give you my hat and then you give me your hat. In the second, you give me money, then I give you my hat, then I give you money, and then you give me your hat. The first is a simpler transaction/trade/swap/whatever than is the second. In this case, money makes the second more complicated.

Likewise, transporting goods on the Amazon River using a bicycle is more complicated than transporting goods on the Amazon River with a row boat. Wheels don't inherently simplify the transport of goods.

Just as money is not "the problem", how we use money factors into the complexity/simplicity of trade, along with many other variables.

(26-03-2013 09:15 AM)bbeljefe Wrote:  And just like the wheel, the fact that we have money doesn't mean it must be used by everyone to trade.

Did you assume Zat had no idea what you state here is true?

(26-03-2013 09:15 AM)bbeljefe Wrote:  If Zat doesn't like money and he thinks everyone should share everything in a commune, then he can persuade people to sign his social contract and they can live happily ever after. However, when someone proposes to do away with something so important to trade and then goes on to propose a new "social contract", which are essentially fictions that are inflicted on the unwilling by force, I can't help but question the motive.

Similar to having money not meaning money must be used by everyone to trade, Zat proposing a social contract does not mean he is forcing anybody to give up money or make real his proposed hypotheticals.

(26-03-2013 09:47 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  Removing money as a tool doesn't accomplish that. Remove all money. There is no money. Does this stop the robber from robbing for goods? Does this stop wars for oil (product)? No, it does not.

Did anybody suggest removing money stops robbery and wars? I don't believe anybody did.

(26-03-2013 09:47 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  I wholeheartedly disagree with you that people produce/work for money and not quality of life. The two are indistinguishable.

How have you figured they are indistinguishable?

(26-03-2013 09:47 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  Because they are indistinguishable when discussing cause-and-effect it makes no difference to me if the anchorperson on the six o'clock news says a robbery occured and money was stolen or if product was stolen. The robber stole to improve their quality of life at the expense of another.

If someone stealing money makes no difference from someone stealing product, why does stopping using money make the difference of going back to hunting, gathering, and having many children for labor division?

Money and quality of life being indistinguishable when discussing cause-and-effect depends upon what causes and effects we discuss.

(26-03-2013 09:47 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  Would it be fair to say that:

1) No matter what the commodity there will be people hoarding it and stealing it?
2) No matter what the commodity there will people with much and those with little or none?
3) No matter what the commodity there will be those that work hard and produce and those that do not?
4) No matter what the commodity there will be resentment for those that produce much and contempt for those that produce little or none?

If by "fair" you mean "true":

1)The answer depends on whether or not any people would choose to hoard and steal the commodity.
2)The answer depends on how all humanity would choose to distribute the commodity.
3)The answer depends on how hard and productively all of humanity would choose to work toward making the commodity.
4)The answer depends on how the consciousness of all humanity will develop.

(26-03-2013 09:47 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  In my view we, humans, cannot change our inherent traits by edict.

Of course we can not directly change our traits by edict, but I would say any edict can potentially indirectly influence many of our traits.

(26-03-2013 09:47 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  We can educate, we can promote with rewards and dissuade with punishment but the fact that we are a product of biological evolution programed to survive overrides "nice" every time.

Do you care to be more specific when you say "every time"? If that were true of "every time" as in every instance where "nice" was an option, then would there be any "nice" people in existence?

(26-03-2013 09:47 AM)Full Circle Wrote:  We will always end up in this type of discussion with how do we modify and change inherent human behavior don't you think?

I think that depends on what anybody will choose to discuss in the future. After all, this thread wasn't started with talk of modifying or changing inherent human behavior, but individuals chose to bring that up, anyway.

(26-03-2013 10:14 AM)bbeljefe Wrote:  Happiness is subjective and because of that, your end and my end are not equal. [...] Taking money out of the equation only serves to make it harder to reach our end, because doing so will not change the nature of the thief, nor will it make it easier for me to sell my goods over the internet.

I agree the first bolded condition is true, so I believe the two italicized words are incorrect, because the other bolded words are also subjective, and comparison found between the first two underlined phrases was not carried through to the last two uderlined phrases.

(26-03-2013 10:14 AM)bbeljefe Wrote:  Environment is a construct of human behavior, not the other way around. On a micro level, a household with peaceful, non violent parents produces an environment of compassion, empathy and sharing for a child, while a household of violent, screaming parents produces an environment of paranoia, apathy and winner takes all for a child. Consequently, it is the latter environment that creates the larger social environment you're railing against. And I agree, it is a problem.

I would say "environment" is a construct of human behavior, and the other way around.

(26-03-2013 10:59 AM)bbeljefe Wrote:  It is indeed leeching off the system. But it isn't money that facilitates that behavior. No sane individual would ever take the sorts of risks that these people take if it were actually their own money on the line.

I think the OP was much more about the absence of money reducing the possibility of such behavior than it was about money facilitating such behavior. If we remove a particular common wealth store, nobody will be able to risk the particular corresponding stored common wealth. Similar to Zat's example, digitally risking billions of dollars through a single transaction generally requires much less effort than risking billions of dollars worth of goats through production and distribution.
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