Why use an alternative economy?

Why invent a new money when our official monies seem to do the job?

Because our conventional money system is at the root of most of the misery, suffering and problems faced by humanity. It is also the prime factor behind the environmental crises we face.

The money systems we use are not neutral, non-partisan, services provided by our governments. They are a service provided by private financial institutions (banks) specifically for their own benefit rather than those who use them.

Our conventional money systems only work for those who already have money, and they marginalise the rest.

Money is the fuel that powers the growth imperative of our economies, forcing us all to compete against each other for the interest (that wasn’t created when the loan amount was created). This pressure has had disastrous consequences for our environment and the health of our planet.

Money comes into existence when commercial banks grant loans, every unit in existence is based on a unit of debt. Money is debt, and the interest portion was never created, so that has to come from someone else who loses his money.

Despite its modern electronic trappings, our conventional money systems are a relic of history. They are the latter-day equivalent of cattle or gold, except that money itself is not worth anything, and the value that we have agreed upon is subject to fluctuations in sentiment, and therefore subject to speculation and insider profiteering.

The debt-based money system was developed for the industrial revolution to provide a rapidly expanding money supply that could not be provided by a money system based on the quantity of precious metals. This introduced intangible money that did not exist in the same way as earlier ‘hard’ monies, but people continued treating it as a tradable commodity.

Money that ‘exists’ can thus be accumulated like any other commodity. It can also be stolen, traded, collected, destroyed and lost. Its distribution is not based on the delivery of value to others but on the ability of people to ‘make money’. Conventional money has no restraints and always flows away from where it is created and needed, towards the ‘money centres’.

The CES breaks out of this paradigm by recognising that the electronics revolution has eliminated the need for an exchange medium

Never before in the history of humankind has it been possible to record accurately who delivers value to whom. Now that this is possible there is no longer a need for an ‘existential’ money; money can at last truly measure the delivery of value and be based on nothing other than the expenditure of effort by people for others.

Currency as information – a unit of measure – not a thing

If money does not need to exist as a thing, it does not have to be created and controlled. We are told we need money, it is convenient and we want the stuff money buys us, but if our community can supply everything we need, then all we require from a currency is a method of keeping note of who supplied what to whom.

A currency that does not exist can never be in short supply

A Talent is a measure, like a kilogram, not a thing you can own. It is the measure of the amount that you have taken from, or given to, your community. The value is arbitrary, as long as everyone knows what one Talent is worth, and in the case of the CES, the value of the Talent has been pegged at one Rand. (This of course is terribly unfair when it comes to exchanging Talents between countries and highlights why money is usurious and why we need an alternative.)