The Invention of Money- Rick Casario

A lot of people often wonder what their hard earned dollars are worth. It’s actually a very interesting question that I myself have always wondered. What drives people to do such crazy things or work for seemingly endless hours at a job just for a piece of paper that has its value in gold in a bank? Odds are that this gold will never be seen but we’re told that it’s there, backing up the credibility of the green paper in our pockets. The Yap had been using a great fei stone at the bottom of the sea as a means of current currency and simply trusting one another that it even existed. Money gets a negative connotation as the root of evil or that it is not a means to buy happiness, but in reality, money is simply a means to an end. The end being trading something of “credible” value such as money for goods and services instead of finding something’s psychical value for the same things. It simplifies the ability for consumers to consume and economies to grow without the hassle of what things are held of equal value.

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3 Responses to The Invention of Money- Rick Casario

  1. davidbdale says:

    Your question, of course, is a good one, Rick. Why do people work endlessly for a piece of paper? But you need to understand first that the US and every other major world economy abandoned the gold standard in the 1930s during the Great Depression and never went back to it. There isn’t a dollar’s worth of gold in the US Treasury for every dollar in circulation any longer; hasn’t been for 80 years. And to be really clear about it, there isn’t even a dollar in circulation for every dollar in circulation, if you see what I mean. It’s not exactly necessary to print all that paper to put money into the economy. The government writes checks, or in many cases just makes electronic payments. The economy is almost purely abstract. There isn’t even a stone at the bottom of the ocean.

    Be sure to read the early posts of your classmates and my feedback to them before you revise this post, if you intend to. There’s an ongoing conversation occurring that might help you add detail and specificity to your own work.

    “Money as a means to an end” is certainly the right tack. What we’ve learned from our brief study of money and the economy is that the stones, the paper, the tangible evidence of our wealth is not where the value resides. Our buying power is our wealth, however we keep track of it. When you put “credible” into quotes, I think, but I’m not sure, you’re trying to express that any token we accept as “believable” can be money. I have to trust when I accept your token that the next guy, the fish seller for example, will accept this same token from me when I present it to him for fish. You can express all of that without resorting to any appeal to the “psychical value” of anything (and you should).

    You’ve said something quite correct when you identify the value of money as a system that “simplifies the ability for . . . economies to grow.” What compelled the US in the 1930s to abandon the gold standard was precisely that: stimulating the economy out of its depression could not be accomplished with the nation’s gold wealth alone. We had to print more money than we had gold to back.

    You may not think this feedback qualifies as notes on your own writing, Rick, but I consider it essential to help you refine your thinking on the topic before we pay any attention to your specific language or overall organization. It would waste your time to organize your argument until we settle on what it is you want to prove.

    Please reply with questions, requests for clarification, observations, or complaints about this sort of interaction regarding your writing. I appreciate feedback too.

  2. rickc1030 says:

    Thank you Professor I greatly appreciate your feedback.

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