A Brief History of Money

“Father Gold, Mother Money”
by Alberto Veronese, November 2012

Any dictionary defines BARTER as: (n) an equal exchange, (v) exchange goods without involving money. (e.g.) We had no money so we had to live by barter.

Well, indeed, in order for the barter to occur, NO money is needed at all. All it needs is two people (TWO ENTITIES), or two groups of people, who barter their goods with each other because they want to.

On the other hand, when money is involved, the equal exchange can not be said barter; In fact, goods or services are exchanged by their money value (i.e. price), where someone ‘sells’ or ‘buys’ goods – for money or with money.

It easy to understand that, for a monetary transaction to occur (i. e. involving money) a third distinctive entity (an authority or assembly) is needed; A THIRD ENTITY which creates, owns and controls the money supply.

NONE of the TWO ENTITIES (which barter with each other) can issue/own the money for themselves; because if so, the resulting exchange would be again nothing else than a barter.

From the dawn of modern history to the present the ‘creation of money’ was an means to move resources from the citizens to the THIRD ENTITY – money must have emerged as a ruling instrument for deferred payments;

In exchange for protection people would assent to give up a part of their resources and obtain developmental projects and services of ‘public-interest’ and the benefits of political order.

In ancient time taxes were paid with work or with a variety of objects. The presumed yield of the fields at harvest was calculated in advance. Whippings inflicted by tax collectors upon the disobedient peasants were frequent.

Throughout civilizations taxes* and obligations were being supervised by functionaries; codes, laws and notices regulated the life of the citizens, and shaped rules for contracts, commerce and private property.

Thereon, money was ‘administered’ to the people and then used as a levy raised by the authority to support the needs of the state. A ‘tax credit’
– fundamentally to assure the interests of the upper cast.

Even today the Internal Revenue Service pays attention to taxing barter activity – you name the swap, the IRS wants to tax it. That means each side must report to the IRS the fair market value (in money) of the item or services received.

Back in time the city-state became an answer to human necessities. Inside the city-state, all in all, people were interdependent from each other, tightly tied to their hierarchies; political and economic life was dominated by war.

The privilege of striking money was of great importance, especially in time of war – ‘Moneta’ has its full power as a ‘monere’ ** – it improves the productivity, the efficiency of labor and settles remunerations and tax collection notices all at once.

The weight or composition of money could differ for many reasons and was not a matter of importance – i.e. large numbers of slaves were used to work the mines – what was important was the name or distinguishing mark of the issuer.

The rise of ‘more democratic’ states, new technologies and new ‘monetary tools’ further the public purpose and benefit (succeeded only after civil strife and violent conflicts) the citizens of the county as a whole.

Today money is not intrinsically limited; the ISSUER cannot run out of its money. The ‘authority’ creates, ’owns’ and issues the currency – and ‘continues’ the ability to decide what is money and what is not.

And as said before, because it is the owner of the currency, any exchange it does with money it results to be a BARTER; it is an ‘equal engagement’ between the authority and the public sector.

It’s a BOND that explicitly expresses the willingness of the authority to build on the work (the labor) of the people, who then confidently and with commitment renew their bond with the authority.

The ‘equal exchange’ of money for goods and labor requires true co-operation as it is needed to keep the economy working – “Let the King serve the people!”
Any national currency that is ‘fiat’ can be redeemed in the form of ‘tax credit’

There are three major offices, which are:

1. ensure fair access to scarce resources,
2. create jobs with adequate pay,
3. allow young and old people to live with dignity.

A healthy ‘modern’ economy provides the facilities and services that a effective, democratic society must have – money is a means toward these ends – we the people ought to pursue this idea and goal ourselves.

The ‘GOVERNMENT’ is committed to create and provide the right monetary system for the benefit of the country, and allow citizens to set in motion a sustainable development of their available public and private resources.

 

 

* Tax, taxo, taxāre; (Latin); (v.) to estimate, value. Labour in ancient Egyptian is a synonym for taxes.

** Moneta (Latin); (n, v.) money, coinage. Moneo, monēre (Latin); (v.) to warn, remind; ad-monēre (n.) warning. The roman goddess Juno Moneta’s name (Greek goddess Mnemosyne) derives likely from the Greek “moneres” meaning alone, unique (an epithet that every mother has).

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One thought on “A Brief History of Money

  1. Pingback: Is the National Debt Really “Debt” at All ? | Not Gold But Money

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