Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Anything Could Arise As Money

Last Saturday, I wrote a post about how technology is capable of slowly making government programs irrelevant.  I used the example of the Post Office becoming irrelevant due to the advances in communication.  I doubt that the U.S. Post Office will be around in 20 years.

It makes me wonder if we could see technology come up with a different form of money.  If the Federal Reserve continues on its disastrous course of buying U.S. government debt, then price inflation will become a major factor in the lives of most Americans.  Actually, it already is a big factor, but it is not so well known.

Could technology provide us with different forms of money.  It could really happen anywhere in the world and it really already does.  When Zimbabwe went into hyperinflation, people started using other currencies, like the U.S. dollar, and gold on a more regular basis.

But it doesn't have to be other fiat currencies and it doesn't even necessarily have to be gold or silver.  I have heard of people using cell phone minutes in other countries as a form of money.  Almost anything could be used.  It could be oil.  It could be stocks.  It could be computer storage space.  It could be timeshare points.  It could be a new website that sells things based on its own point system, instead of using dollars.  It could be any combination of things.

Technology is so sophisticated now, that you could have a broad market of different things with constantly fluctuating exchange rates.  It could be like a big stock market with huge trading.  Just as an example, perhaps you could trade your hotel credits from a timeshare for a certain amount of oil.  You wouldn't actually get delivery of the oil though.  Then you could trade the oil shares for a new watch.

There is always the problem of government regulation and taxation.  That is a problem with using gold as money now.  But the market can find ways around this.  If the U.S. dollar (or any other currency) becomes weak enough, it would not surprise me to see people trying to trade more with other things.  There might eventually be a few things that people start to obtain, not because they want it, but because it is marketable to others.  These few things would then take on the characteristics of a medium of exchange.

I really have no idea how this would work or what might be used.  That would be up to the billions of people in the marketplace.  But it is possible that technology could help us find relief from the destructive policies of central bankers and governments.

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