Corvida Raven

Community Catalyst, TED Conferences

This conversation is closed.

If you woke up today and money ceased to exist, what is the first thing you would do? Why?

Money is a motivating factor in a lot of actions people take on a daily basis. What if money didn't exist? What would you do then?

Let's NOT get into the technicalities of how removing money from the world would change things. This Conversation is SPECIFICALLY about the FIRST thing you would do if money ceased to exist today and why you would do that particular thing.

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts.

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    Jul 24 2011: grab things at home, and head for the store to exchange it for canned food. if i can find a guy stupid enough to make such a deal, i can survive a little longer. i would also accept cigarettes. then i would work on fortifying my house. looting will soon start.
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    Jul 23 2011: I would re-introduce it...

    Face it. Money is one of the best inventions ever.

    Other than that, I would try and figure out how to obtain my daily need of consumer goods (food, drinks)...

    The problem is not money, the problem is how we allow certain money flows to exist.
    • Jul 23 2011: Money is the greatest and the worst invention ever. If at the beginning there were some value behind the money, it had been made from gold and silver and had some resource behind it. Now the money does not worth the paper it printed on. The money is great for you if and only if you are at the top of pyramid and it's only a 1% of earth population, for others money = depth and depth that can't be return - depth = slavery. Any way there are people that can explain this well than me for an example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1gKX9TWRyfs
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        Jul 23 2011: I don't think that my income is in the top 1%... though I feel myself a rich person.
        About debt: you should, as a person always try and stay out of debt.
        If people don't get into debt, a whole lot of problems would be solved.

        First earn money, then buy stuff! (even houses, but that is another discussion)

        Like I said in other posts already: I don't buy the Zeitgeist story. It has some really nice things to it, has some good critiques and makes people dream. If everybody who is pro Zeitgeist actually did something concrete to further the project (and not talking about it), I might reduce my skepticism.
        It does not sufficiently take into account that we humans, even those who had a very good environment and education, are still human, and prone to deceit, wealth, power, possession,... and a whole range of the less positive traits and behaviors.

        The notion of a value of mineral resources behind money seems useless to me (what use has silver or gold to me?).
        If you would want to couple money to something, make it related to the earth's production and abundance we can use annually so it is not only sustainable, but grows!
        • Jul 24 2011: 1. I am a person who trays to stay away of depts. But as you said – the house or even apartment I’m unable to bay without a loan and after that I’ll have to pay this mortgage for 20 years. I will have to return twice the amount I’ve loaned (at least). Well you probably say – don’t bay any house – rent one. If I’ll rent an apartment I’ll have to pay almost the same amount for rental as I would be paying mortgage – so what’s the difference.
          Well I’m the easy case, while I’m complaining about the roof. There are people that have the same complains about food.
          2. The Zeitgeist movement actually does something, for instance creating a movie is not free there are a lot of man hour and equipment, lecturing is not free either. And it’s even harder for this movement because you are unable to raise money for a good cause because you are against it. I am ready to contribute my time, physical and mental effort, but never the money because it’s contrary the idea.
          3. About the human nature, partially I will agree with you. But let’s look from a different angle: I want to possess some item, let’s say a TV – there are no means to bay some, I can take one from store for free – this eliminates stealing. I am a greedy person I want more TV’s: 2,3,4,5 … when a community sees that I’m taking into possession many TV’s it says – hey this person ‘really’ needs TV’s, let’s help hem and delivers to me double the amount I’ve taken. Eventually what will happen?
          I can’t do nothing with those TV’s – unable to sell or trade them, I will put in every room a TV what will I do with others? Where will I store them and for what? If at any time I can take another TV. My neighbors will look at me strangely – “Is this a man with TV problem”, eventually I will myself bring unnecessary items to the store, and I’ll remain with one TV in order to look modest in the neighbor eye.
          4. About the money made of gold: I didn't mean that the mineral is the value of money – what I wanted to say is – that there
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          Jul 27 2011: QUOTE: "I don't think that my income is in the top 1%..."

          Obviously, I don't know what your income is but assuming you are "quite well off," there is a good chance your income is in the top 1%.

          If you make more than $2100 you would be in the "top half" of the world's wealth distribution.

          About $60,000 puts you in the top 10%.

          And about $500,000 will get you into the 99th percentile.
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        Jul 27 2011: Then I would not even be in the top 10%

        Time to revise your assumptions I guess ;-)
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          Jul 28 2011: Ah, I no longer have to assume - you see, now I know you are not in the top 10%.

          Oh wait!

          I am assuming you are telling the truth (you seem like an honest fellow!) but I really don't know any more than I did before ...

          This knowing thing can be a bit of a bother. But that's a discussion for another thread, isn't it? ;-)
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    Jul 26 2011: The first thing I would do is doggedly determine what the current means of barter is.
    Because money ceases to exist does not magically transform our communities into some Shangri-La, where people exchange goods or services for free.
    People are not motivated by money as they are about the things (stuff) it may allow them to have. Many have used it to do wonderful things in our communities and elsewhere.
    Every generous endeavour and every worthwhile pursuit may be realized whether money exists or not. Just do it.
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    Jul 25 2011: Money has never motivated me. I've actually tried to use it as a motivator (setting monetary goals and so on) and it just doesn't work for me. I do what I do because I want to do it. The money comes or it doesn't.

    So, on a personal level, I would do what I "normally" do ... which is enjoy life and respond to whatever situation I am participating in.

    Of course, how one operates within "the system" would have to be renegotiated ... rebuilt I suppose. But I don't think that's what your asking.
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      Jul 25 2011: I agree with Thomas.

      If you can get everything for free, they won't worth their value anymore.

      But to answer to your question, I think I'll go back to my country to see my parents. I miss them so much. Tickets are too expensive.
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    Jul 22 2011: I think a better way to frame this is not to say 'what if money didn't exist but everything else was the same?" but to say " What if everything you need money for was already taken care of, ie you won a 'cash for life' lottery?"

    I'd do the same thing I do now, but without the worry that it doesn't pay enough. I'd do more research during the summer, rather than working a second job.
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      Jul 22 2011: Michael, your question is one I through out to kids that tell me they want to be rich or a millionaire when they grow up.

      What I'm getting at with my current question is the difference in options we would consider and how much we think accessing things will change if money is not in the picture. A very simple example of the difference is that without money in the equation, people immediately think of bartering. With money still in the equation (whether you have an unlimited supply or not) people tend to think of more material things.
  • Jul 27 2011: Travel, travel, travel. There are so many places I have wanted to see but money was ALWAYS the obstacle. I've never been out of the country, never been on a plane, barely left the U.S. east coast. But I'm still young, so things might change.
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    Jul 26 2011: Then everything would be free....
    Life, Love, Living....
    Coz majorly money revolves around these.....
    So id fill her Up & let it rip.....
    Cloud 9.... cruisin speed.
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    Jul 26 2011: I worked in IB during the financial crisis, and their was a moment when it seamed money would sort of "cease"...the first feeling i got was that i felt relieved...suddenly a huge burden of pressure and competition fell my mind...to answer concretely your question,...I would try to be close to peolpe I trust and feel comfortable with...
  • Jul 26 2011: I would request to be taken to space and be left there floating for a week...
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      Jul 27 2011: Why?
      • Jul 27 2011: Because I don't have the $30M it would cost to do now... plus it would be AWESOME to go to space!
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          Jul 28 2011: I agree with you there, space would be incredible!! Would there be space travel without money though? Serious question, not rhetorical.
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    Jul 25 2011: I would spend more time meeting new people. There are too many people I didn't get to know because I was working to pay for college/living.
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    Jul 24 2011: Think. Assess the skills and commodties I have that can be used to barter. Organize a community meeting (4-5 block area to begin) and assess how we can help one another through barter. Set up structure to ensure necessities are availablle to all (water, food, shelter).

    Begin to think about longterm needs once shortterm comforts are met. Find information on the pre-industrial household, which was self-sufficiient,.

    A social organization must be created to contend with the changed circumstances.
  • Jul 24 2011: I'd go to work (teaching reading at a public school) and then organize a community bartering center.
  • Jul 24 2011: I guess I would still go to have my breakfast first, and thinking about what I need and want to know about how people exchange their things. Because it's hard to estimate the value of all the things, it would be very difficult for people to exchange what they need very equally.
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    Jul 23 2011: If monehy ceased to exist I would go back to the barter system. I would fully enjoy lifes little pleasures.
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    Jul 23 2011: I think the day money ceased to exist first thing I’ll do is I’ll go back to my village that to free of cost. Free not because airlines or trains will provide free services but because I have to travel by walk or by cycle all the way 1000 miles as with money most of the means of transportation will also ceased to exist. I’ll not be able to buy food so only option will be to grow it so I’ll setup my farmland and start growing crops. My kids will not go to school to learn how to live in materialistic world so we’ll have plenty of time together enjoying and learning how to live in this beautiful world. I’ll not need to buy precious gifts for my wife to show my love because she’ll get what she always demanded even after getting those gifts and that is me. I’ll be always be with her with my family and I think it’ll be the happiest time of my life.....But that's just a dream in reality if money ceased to exist first thing any one will do it to recreate it :-)
  • Jul 23 2011: WOW, what a great idea !!! I would just stop, think and enjoy the idea of a world free of corruption, that is mainly created and maintained for the sake of accumulating money. Saying that as an Egyptian, who is still witnessing our revolution that reveals every day how corruption was tied to money. Latter, I would look for the simplest form of life, choose it and enjoy sharing life with humanity.
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    Jul 23 2011: if money was no issue, I would go to NY and work for Architecture for Humanity. That is what I want to do anyway, but can't afford because they only take volunteers :(
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    Jul 23 2011: I would do exactly the same as usual. If I were working would carry on, but I would not expect to be paid. When i need something I would just pick it up and not pay. That is what I have agreed to do and so has everyone else. Until we get used to it we might be inclined to grab a bit more than we actually need but when we find it will always be there, we would stop hoarding. Like everything else, freedom carries it's own responsibility. ( Is there somreting wrong with this typescript, some characters are not forming properly). Of course, it can only happen if we all agree>
  • Jul 23 2011: I think immediately of Orwell's Animal Farm. I think in the short run, it would reset local inequalities temporarily and displace and remove the elites from power with a feeling of euphoria for ones once repressed. But in the long run, a monatary system would be re-established and a new group of elites in the right place at the right time would arise. There would be negligable difference between the old elites and the new elites. Throughout history following voids of power to be seised, the new rulers often feel nostaligia and go back to habits of previous ones in power as its often the only example of ruling known before.
  • Jul 23 2011: if all money ceased to exist the first thing i'd do is work out what things others would likely want in trade for the things i need.

    a lot of commenters say they'd be glad, but i'm sure that'd be extremely short-lived. say you order a pizza to celebrate the erasure of your student loan or the fact that in an instant the rich and poor have been placed on equal ground, how would you pay for it? do you have anything at all that the supermarket would accept in exchange for the daily necessities you need from them? and how would you like to be compensated by your employer?

    money is NOT a motivating factor in anyone's life, it is a means to an end. money is not some giant evil creation it's simply a trade standard which enables us to trade the things we have for the things we want.

    if you're trying to make an objection to the way society is today in that the rich tend to do whatever they can to ensure they get the biggest share of the pie even if it means leaving everyone else the smallest possible, then i'd agree that you have a point. i firmly believe maximum wealth should be tied to minimum wealth - the CEO can't make more than 10 times any other employee for example, so that if he wants more he also has to give all of his workers more.
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    Jul 23 2011: If money ceased to be the currency by which we make a living and everything else remained the same it would change my life in nearly every aspect. It would be Utopia.

    Even those for which money is "no object" it still defines them. Take money away and we would judge people's worth not by the size of their bank account but, to quote MLK, "by the content of their character". That would be nice.
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    Jul 22 2011: Probably, pretty much the same as I do every day. I know that's not inspiring or even particularly interesting, but it is honest.
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    Jul 22 2011: throw a party!
  • Jul 22 2011: I would probably weep for joy at the prospect of all of my college debt being erased. Then I would pour myself a bowl of Corn Pops and watch cartoons, just like I used to when money didn't matter.
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      Jul 23 2011: This made me almost cry, I'm seventeen and I don't know just sounds so sad that this is what life will turn into, missing the good ol' days
      • Jul 23 2011: Oh, man, I really didn't mean to make you (almost) cry. I sincerely apologize. I'm only 24, and 17 doesn't seem like that long ago, so please don't think that everyone that gets older is cynical and depressed. I mean, I am, but that's me.

        But seriously, a 17 year old browsing TED? Not just browsing, but interacting with the community? Awesome. I commend you. I wish I had a resource like this when I was younger. And really, it's not just the absence of a resource, but the desire to grow and learn through a positive environment. This website and the community that surrounds it are amazing, and if you're interested in discussion and education that relates to TED, I have a feeling you'll be just fine.

        Long story short, yeah, I suppose my outlook is a bit sad, but if there's something sad, there must be something beautiful waiting to be experienced.
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          Jul 23 2011: Thank you, I really needed your message I guess I'm just afraid cause I don't know what's next but your words have shown me you can't have good without the bad so I guess I'll just have to weather the storm and keep moving.
      • Jul 23 2011: Wow! I'm 29, a high school teacher in Oz, and someone who knows far too much about educational debt (20g's+ initially, but slowly whittled down to about 11 ) and hoping the best for my students' futures. I wish I had more kids like you in my class Jerell. I sincerely mean that. I experience far too many young adults who feel disillusioned by the circumstances that they grow up in, focus too much on the negatives of life / school / peer pressure etc... and give up on the amazing experiences that the future holds. To be honest, i found the whole concept of school pretty tough (i don't think i could explain to you succinctly enough how i ended up being a teacher!), but there is an amazing life waiting for you. The only requirement is that you embrace it.
  • Jul 22 2011: I would pray and ask for the LORD's guidance on what to do and how to go about it.
  • Jul 22 2011: The first thing I would do is gather my guns & their ammunition, clean the guns, and get ready for trouble. That would be the ultimate financial strife in society, and financial strife is the worst--people like their money, and when there is none, big trouble is on the way very quickly.
    • Jul 23 2011: Yes, I was thinking the same, because there would be a huge battle for resources that people with money no longer have necessary access to. There would be no order at all because the laws rely on law enforcement and that would not likely be functioning. 1. Get protection ready 2. Set up some form of sustainable farming 3. barter/trade with people for things I need
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    Jul 22 2011: I think I would drop everything and move to some place that I chose at random
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      Jul 22 2011: I'm tempted to follow in your steps :)
    • Jul 23 2011: How would you pay for the flights / petrol etc...? Money is a means to an end. It allows us to transfer a relative value to someone else. How would your new abode be acquired? Whatever the materialistic / intrinsic value, it would be really difficult to create a new measure-of-value on-the-fly to a broad range of people.
  • Jul 21 2011: Pretty much the same minus the obvious...
  • Jul 21 2011: Find some food, so I could live.
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    Jul 21 2011: I wouldn't go into work.
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    Jul 21 2011: I guess it would depend on what was happening.
    If we woke up and everyone had the Star Trek version of society where everyone's basic needs were met and everyone was free and inspired to do what they did best, I might decide to go to medical school and work to heal people (but first I would like to spend a month in Costa Rica or someplace equally tropical with someone wonderful!)
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      Jul 21 2011: Sounds wonderful Debra.

      What if you woke up and it was as it is now? What would you do then?
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        Jul 22 2011: Ah, Corvida, insightful question!
        Perhaps I would see if TED would hire me. Any openings? I want to plug in my MBA in a way that makes a difference.
  • Jul 28 2011: I'd get straight on a plane and go anywhere and everywhere
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    Jul 28 2011: I'll probably panic at first! Thinking what to do; to survive, food, paying the bills etc... After that, I'll probably think this is probably the best things that could happen to our beautiful planet; finally equality for all...people will be more humble, wisdom and go back to the roots, values, respect etc...

    Great question, love it !
    Peace
  • Jul 27 2011: There is a project called Venus, by the Zeitgeist movement. Although not all their ideas might be popular, they do offer an utopian view of a post capitalist civilisation. Anyone curious about it could read their stuff and find out a response to the thread. The point is it is posible to live without money if property is disolved and everything is shared (cars, houses, TV's, etc.). No need to steal if you are not allowed to accumulate objects and privileges. No social disention because someone thinks others have more stuff than you. Equal distribution of base necesities and necesity driven production would eliminate waste created by competition. Work would be done acording to personal enclination and not financial pressure. Money drives most of our decisions these days, not allowing us to do what we were born to do, which is to live free. So the first thing I would do is apply for an institution where I would best be in a position to clean up after the money driven polution and social decay.
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      Jul 27 2011: read their stuff, or you can just look around here, and find like half a dozen of conversations about them. i don't buy that at all, but i must admit that they do a great job motivating people, it seems.
    • Jul 27 2011: Key word there is utopian which is an ideal... but then again so is this question... either way keep thinking forced equality, forced economies, forced property and forced behavior are heaven...
  • Jul 27 2011: Rediscover it and claim the distribution rights, failing that nothing different... except I would be worrying about something else.
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    Jul 27 2011: drink coffee, as usual... Then, probably, I'd take my day off...
  • Jul 27 2011: "Let's NOT get into the technicalities of how removing money from the world would change things."

    This is, frankly, absurd - at least if understood in the broad sense of "Let's not discuss how the world would be different." At the very least, you need to say whether money disappears because we have attained post-scarcity, because we've now got a government that equally distributes everything among everyone, or simply because it's disappeared from circulation. Otherwise, we can't respond adequately to the question, unless the question was meant to tease out what we think the disappearance of money would require.

    If the first, then I'd go to British Columbia and build myself a house on a four-acre piece of land. If the second, then I'd inform myself; what are my new rights, my new restrictions? If the last, then I'd pour through the Internet to figure out exactly how I need to adjust my behavior to continue enjoying a comfortable standard of living, and what new possibilities, if any, are open in the likely brief time-frame before people start establishing basic currency again. And I'd probably arm myself because, yes, chaos would ensue.

    It's a mistake to see money as a motivating factor - material wealth is the motivating factor for most people, not money for money's sake. So removing money, realistically, would probably just result in people rapidly figuring out some new way of distributing material wealth.
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    Jul 27 2011: I would get on my bike and head to the nearest farm where they grow their own vegies and meat and help out there. Would have to be close to a rock wall too so I could go climbing. I would do this so I had a place to wait out whatever would happen post money dissapearing. Would be interesting.

    Also, I think a lot of people have missed the point of the question. This is not a debate about what you think money means to you or the world, Corvida clearly states that she wants to know the first thing you would do. Stop being so pretentious.
  • Jul 27 2011: As long as someone else has something I want, "money" will never cease to exist.

    If a day does come when I have everything I want and there is nothing I would want from anyone else, I will be either dead or have attained nirvana :) I wont have any motivation to do anything after that..
    To answer your question, what will I do? NOTHING !!
  • Jul 27 2011: What is money?
    We don`t use money any longer. Companies don`t use money. Governments don`t use money. Everybody is using something that we pretend is money. Even the money itself doesn`t mean anything, because is based in a structure and not in a real value (as it use to be: gold). So, the question is not absurd. There is a possibility for the world to loose, for some period, the reference of value. Nowadays is easier than in the last century.
    The thing is that, even the money cease to exist, the human way of thinking would stay the same. And, in it`s almost universal (we have to be careful with the ˜universal`word) the idea of contract, the idea of reciprocity. If we don`t have money to do so, we are going to do it with other ways.
    In Argentina, during their crisis of 2000, the money was so rare and the people`s needs were so extreme, that they create market with informal money to make their trades.
    The human being will not change because of the lack of a currency. He will create another way to do the trades. This is the historical development of the human being, not some accident of the last century.
    For me, the FIRST THING I would do if money ceased to exist, is evalluate everithing I have, every item I have in my home, because there would come times when basic trades were be needed. Guns would be needed too, despite I hate it.
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    Jul 27 2011: Money is a simbolic structure very flexible as all simbolic structures from myths. If that thing happens all the myths modified their paradigms and soon we invented another form to buy and exchange and barter things, services and goods. The first thing to do, for me is walk to my studio here in Rome and see how all the people going mad. And laugh.
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    Jul 27 2011: Great hair Corvida !!

    This is something to think about...got to sleep on that one, I'll back at you !
  • Jul 26 2011: Have breakfast!
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    Jul 26 2011: Money is no where near my motivator, I would rather be the most famous poor person then the richest unknown.

    If money went away: 1. Get a weapon, just it case, and head to where the most people are or to the nearest world leader to see what's up next.

    2. I would far too curious to do anything besides explore what others were doing and watching the transition of world history.

    3. Continue on with my current life plans, just more excited!
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    Jul 25 2011: Well after I got over the shock I would really breathe. Without the pressure that comes with money I would realy breathe and figure out a batering system. Try to really work as a community.
  • Jul 25 2011: life is based on exchange. our body's work by exchange of energy, oxygen.... if money ceased to exist we would quickly find a replacement.... if we all were able to still do our share of work and do it for free then there would be no need for money or exchange, one would give what one can and take what one needs.... if i woke up one day and this change had happened i would go out and do my best to give my share of effort to maintaining life for the collective and probably come home at night after a hard days work feeling better then ever......
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    Jul 25 2011: Has anyone here heard of http://www.justfortheloveofit.org/ ?
    I found it through TED-ED's Facebook page! Check it out!
  • Jul 25 2011: Hmm, I'd probably try to make a self-sufficient community by gathering other groups of people specialized in various fields. This would highly create dependence but it would be necessary. These needs would include food, water, electricity, transportation and the like. I guess I would have to start small with gardening, micromanagement, rallying, etc. Security might be a concern, although this depends on others. Maybe a few collective communities with many people with technical skills would be able to survive with their own governing systems. After that, teaching these skills to the next generation of people would be the next concern for me.

    I rather preferred if people spent time learning these skills as a trade-off for being allowed to live in a collective society and continual development in various areas than any predefined age/group limit, tuition/administration fee, marketing/job-hunting/investing or whatever confining us to constraints which theoretically don't exist. On one hand, it may mean I no longer have luxuries, people are more dependent on one another but on the other hand any form of unemployment or "marketing venture" or "grant proposal" is completely invalidated in itself because the only values upheld by the community are those with technical/practical/researching/relaying information skills. And in most cases, I guess its pretty idealistic but I'd say many people wouldn't want to live their entire lives having everyday as a Sunday weekend (if resources were always available).

    Regardless, resource allocation/governing and relying on "help you; you help me" mentality would be the greatest factor in post-money era.
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    Jul 25 2011: I call you and say: your question is a fact now.
  • Jul 25 2011: What I always do, Help people. Need never changes, money or not. Make sure I am safe, fed, watered and housed. Doing that ensures, I can see to others Health, Safety and welfare.
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    Jul 24 2011: Great question. First thoughts - I'd make sure my kids and husband were safely within reach. Then I'd reach out to my network of "dream team" folks - you know the people in your life who inspire you, stretch you, make you a better and smarter you. Next, we could dream up several solutions and rapidly iterate.
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      Jul 25 2011: Why don't you reach out to your dream team today? I bet you can find several solutions now, and make money as a side-effect...

      Or is it really money that keeps you from doing that?
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        Jul 25 2011: Love the poke - working on it in my current gig where I'm lucky to work with a dream team who fundamentally cares about making a difference in other people's lives vs their own wallets. When and if that ever changes, I'll come looking for you and convince you to join yet another team.
  • Jul 24 2011: Quickly study known societies that have existed without it in the past , I beleive the Inca had no direct equivant of money and we a very large succesful society, at least for a while. I would do this because it would help us a lot to copy what else worked in the past. No sense going thru so much chaos without a plan.
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    Jul 24 2011: Find it's replacement and devise a plan to amass a huge quantity of it.
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    Jul 24 2011: I would use community and complementary currencies
  • Jul 24 2011: go to an istore and buy an ipad2
  • Jul 24 2011: I'd quit my job and finally learn how to sew, play the piano, ride a bike, etc.
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    Jul 24 2011: begin farming
  • Jul 24 2011: Hmmmm.....probably just go back to bed and think about what I wil do next when I wake up.
  • Jul 24 2011: They said "money is the root of all evils".
    If money ceased to exist, all evils ceased to exist too.
    What an effective way to get rid of all evils.

    The first thing I would do is to throw away my wallet/purse
    coz' there's no need for it anymore.:D
    • Jul 25 2011: I think its 'THE LOVE of money that is the root of all evils'.

      Anyway, there was a way everyone lived before there was money. So men will find a way. There was a time in my undergraduate days when I didn't have a dime for almost a month. I lived on mangoes and looked healthier/fresher.

      It seems to me that apart from it's diagonistic value, money's major problem is the limit it sets on human imagination. if meoney ceased today, I would acquire as much writing materials as I could lay my hands on.
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    Jul 24 2011: Me will read how to catch fish then go to the beach to try and hope that works or Go back to where I was and be happy.
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    Jul 24 2011: id probably be at the servo or trying to buy some food so then assuming my card wouldnt work i dunno id probably have a bunch of free fuel or be really hungry, then i would go get more a lot more fuel from somewhere and go home.
  • Jul 24 2011: i'm assuming that there are no functioning governments if there's all of a sudden no money, so i would become a brigand and start robbing people on highways. also, i would probably try my hardest to invent money if money ceased to exist.
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    Jul 24 2011: Well of course money is necessary in the real world haha this topic however explores the idea of money not existing. People got around the world way before airplanes were ever invented. Anyhow that's irrelevant to the question, since the info stated: "let's not get into the technicalities of how removing money from the world would change things". I was just thinking that an idealistic question deserved an idealistic answer :)
    Thanks,
    Malarie
  • Jul 23 2011: I would (inadvertently) join humanity in the first big screw-up around this - and take a few days off, and try and think about what I would like to do (work) most.

    But in those precious few days, when most would just enjoy to no longer have to worry about money (or work - which is the necessity to earn money), I would think that hardly anyone would be there to "sell" us food - just being out enjoying our personal freedoms.

    I think the transition into a new system without money could become very dangerous. (Not because I think that we couldn't work without money - but simply because it would be such a major shift in how our modern world works).
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    Jul 23 2011: First thing I'd do? Celebrate. Why? Because it would be a wonderful day.
  • Jul 23 2011: "MORE MONEY, MORE PROBLEMS" Christopher Wallace(Biggie smalls).
    i guess if there's NO MORE, there will then be LESS PROBLEMS in this paper driven world we live in...
  • Jul 23 2011: Well, if you talk about money as in bills then the first thing i would do is get gold and gems. Without money people will go back to the barter system. Our minds are still hard wired for barter. It is something we would naturally revert to if money no longer existed. Gold and gems have no intrinsic value but they are items that are worth something because they are hard to fake and are nice to look at. People will always want shiny things to give to girls and so on. So these things will always hold value even though they are practically useless for anything else.

    If you are talking about all forms of currency and trade-able things then i would go to a forest. A large enough forest will have edible plants and wildlife and provide fuel in the form of wood. One would have to become self sufficient to survive and a city will not do. With nothing to barter communities in cities and town will collapse like a house of cards. A farmer can barter produce, a wall street stock market analyst can barter hot air. I know who would survive in such an apocalyptic future.
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    Jul 23 2011: Hmm, Just embrace it simple concept, I'm willing to try anything that would allow for a transition into adult society thank you for the advice.
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    Jul 23 2011: iwould grow crops, cultivate the earrth, and hopefully raise a family.
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    Jul 23 2011: Money is the currency that simplify the economic value of the things we use in living and socializing.

    If there is no money then I can imagine myself simply enjoying life with my family and my friends, meeting more friends traveling around our peaceful global home.

    Our diversity would naturally divide the work that we all can contribute in making our systems work. We would never work in our lives because going to school and operating our government and business systems would be all like playing all day.

    We don't really need money to enjoy life. The systems that we setup to enjoy life do need it.
  • Jul 23 2011: Right on. Now, I'm by no means a person who is full of positive advice, but I try to at least share my (admittedly warped) views. Can't have good without bad. In fact, and this may be a total digression from the conversation, I think that someone can't even do good in the world (and by good I mean affecting their environment and society) without having first done, or at least experience, the opposite. So maybe those days that just feel heavy and difficult, even the utterly awful times, are something we experience to allow us a full appreciation for the days that lay in the opposite end of the spectrum.
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      Jul 23 2011: Justin, perhaps there is truth in the saying that "the experience of others is the best experience that can teach us"

      There are many bad news of bad experiences in the media and it can spur us to convert it into good experiences when we are ready.

      I think we are ready when we understand our true inner identity, true happiness powered by true love and caring heart that makes all things possible. http://Bit.Ly/KeyPower
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    Jul 23 2011: i have no idea.
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    Jul 22 2011: i will secretly save the money into my account to make more money lol.
  • Jul 22 2011: I would whittle down my belongings to only things I truly wanted and lend the rest out. I'm not sure why but something about a no money world made my hoarder brain slow down and my sharing brain speed up.
  • Jul 22 2011: Description for the question is not very clear. I can see two scenarios when money cease to exist:
    1. When no one in the world has money. In that case evolution of capitalism will start again with barter. So I will do market research ;) about which services are in great demand for exchange. I will harbor the required skill, start marketing about it and exchange it for services I need. In case there is not much demand for variety of services, I will create a notion that having little comfort in life is good which will start upward trend in capitalism and money one more time will be mode of exchanging services.
    2. If everyone has money except me, I will not worry much. I will find out the way to get it back - beg, borrow or steal!
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    Jul 22 2011: I would figure out how I would be able to exchange again, obviously starting through barter, selling all of the crap I do not need for what I do and cannot produce all on my own. It would certainly be a day where capitalist would cease to exist, that is one benefit.
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      Jul 22 2011: And if it ceases to exist, does it change your life for the better?
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        Jul 22 2011: Yes, of course it would change it. Maybe check out some of the dialog I have been having with Benjamin Smith and Edward Medeiros. Let me know! :-)
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    Jul 22 2011: Ironically we may be very close to a time when the value of paper money is worthless, essectially money wont exist or wont matter. In that case - I would stay away from cities, make sure you have something to barter (skills or goods) and look for ways to store food.
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      Jul 22 2011: Paper money is worthless, it is only backed up by trust. They are not promissory notes. As G. Edward Griffin said, "Money, as it is today, or any other representation are valuable only as abstractions of another value held in escrow till exchange." If what is held in escrow are financial (banking) tools such as: Fractional reserve requirements, Interest rates, or security bonds (IOUs) than we have no sound money.
      • Jul 22 2011: ''And this life of the world is nothing but a distraction and a play; and as for the next abode, that most surely is the life- did they but know!''

        The Quran 29:64

        Money, society, leadership, positions and everything else.. we just made them up...we are pretending..for our own good..they are valueless..they are not real...this life is a game we have made.. Live...Live...for the absolute truth..for meaning of life..Know yourself so you can know him...
      • Jul 22 2011: I like what Matt is saying here. What is the value of paper money? Better yet, what is the value of credit? Of money in the bank? Not a whole lot. If our whole economic system was to crash, and money was to be gone, we'd be SOL.
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          Jul 22 2011: Thanks Benjamin. Your right too. However, when this did happen, in 1929 (for reasons I will not waste time on), we can see that even though this happened there were still no less resources or wealth — it was a slump, a slump in money. People, even in science, are confusing the measuring system with what it measures. The real question is, how to we get to a place in time where everyone can be the enjoyer of an independent income? I have some theories, anyone else want to add to that?
      • Jul 22 2011: True. But I find myself wondering what it DOES measure, in terms of if money was gone. For sure, money represents agricultural products. But money also represents entertainment. Internet technology. Military such and such. It seems modern society has a ridiculous amount of credit in industries that would be fairly irrelevant, if money itself did not exist. Think about it. If the a group of people has $2000000 of money, representing 25% food, 25% land, and the rest of it non-essential, what happens when money is of no value, and everyone wants to say "all my money represented agricultural products" and no one wanted to say "all my money was for PORNZ".

        That's just my opinion, anyways. I try to live less in terms of money, and more in terms of what I actually have. I'm definitely no economist.
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          Jul 22 2011: It measures physical prosperity, or it is at least suppose to. That is, it measures, or it should take into account, the labour put into the product and the nature of the natural resources output value. Where a capitalist fits into this or neoclassical elements, I am not sure as their mathematical models try to undermine this classical labor theory of value and thus substitute it with a kind of last additional marginal value and consumer price indexes.
          If there were no non-cumbersome forms of exchange how would you get food, cloths, clean water, shelter, energy systems, etc? In other words, can you produce everything you need, not wants, all on your own?
      • Jul 22 2011: Are you agreeing with me on your first paragraph? Because that's exactly what I'm trying to say. Less about labor, and more about actual physical product though.


        If there were no forms of money, you'd have to create a system of exchange, in which towns became more dependant on each other. You couldn't go to the grocery store to buy imported fruits: you'd have to go to whoever has fruit, and give them something of your own to get what you want. The problem is, modern countries have alot of money invested in things that'd be totally unnecessary in a money-free world. So, if we woke up tomorrow, and all the forms of money were gone, we'd have two options: start self-sustaining lifestyles in which a group of people depends on each other and gets everything they need (which of course, would take years to fully develop), or everyone try to stake a claim in what money represented (a specific amount of goods), leading to everyone staking a claim in what matters (food, shelter) and no one claiming possession over the interweb.
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          Jul 22 2011: Labor is a product of producing physical prosperity. Labour and non-human nature. These are the values with which to hold as truisms. Artisans and farmers, that is the society you are speaking of. One void of people who supply capital, that is, land lords, financiers (mercantilists, bankers, acquisitors, etc). That part I agree with, no suppliers of capital except that of society as a whole. In other words, capital assets tax. Workers own the means of production and pay a kind of loan to access capital to regions on a per capita need basis. No one single entity or small group owns productive resources.
          I think the Grateful Dead said it best, "You can't go back, and you can't stand still; if the thunder don't get you then the lightening will."
          Or Abraham Lincoln, "I walk very slow, but I never walk backwards."
          We are doing, what Marshall McLuhan called, "Driving into history looking at the rear view mirror".
          If we can fix that, then these problems you speak of should resolute slowly. But going back is not the answer, even though it is a very romantic idea — I used to agree — but there are problems with frictioning against the nature of intelligence, novelty, and complexity.
          It is not money that is bad remember it is the act of turning money into a commodity that gets sticky.
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    Jul 22 2011: I'll probably have breakfast first but if no money means everything is free,then we can talk dear. ;)