Challenge match: TinkerHaus vs curiousrb - Society would function better without a monetary system.

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posted on Dec, 31 2012 @ 10:17 PM
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Before we get started, I'd like to give a sincere thanks to ATS for providing this forum, my opponent, curiosrb for allowing me to debate this topic with them, and everyone who contributes to the debate forum.

Money is defined as “any circulating medium of exchange, including coins, paper money, and demand deposits.” In today's world nearly all “government issued” money is what is known as FIAT money. Fiat money has no intrinsic value and will only buy a gallon of milk or a pack of cigarettes because the person selling goods knows someone else will accept the currency for goods or services as well. Without this faith in both the issuer of the currency, and that it will be equally valuable to the next seller, money has absolutely no value other than it would be easy to use to start a fire.

My opponent will most certainly claim that money is responsible for the advancement of society - that a society is driven by it's economy, and that a universally accepted and centrally administered currency is necessary for a thriving civilization. My opponent will also tell you that goods and services cannot be easily exchanged without a central currency and that money provides a necessary incentive for people to be productive. I will address these issues as the debate progresses, but would like to use my opening argument to examine where a universally accepted and centrally administered currency has brought us.

Money is created out of debt. The paper and coins we use as currency are created by private banks, and loaned to the world's governments at interest. Because of this mechanism the debt incurred when currency is printed can never be fully repaid. If you had 100 people, and created 100 dollars but charged the people 105 dollars to repay the debt, 5 people would NEVER be able to repay their debt. This system creates a polarization of society based on wealth by making it necessary to take from your fellow man in order to keep your own head above water. Money creates conflict at the most basic of levels.

The world is over 49.7 trillion dollars in debt. In order to pay this debt off every man, woman, and child on the planet would have to pay approximately $7000 USD. The moment you are born into this world you are in debt. In the USA the personal debt is approximately $36,800.00 per person.

The monetary system has created some of the most corrupt institutions in the world today. Governments no longer control the issuing of money and the money supply. Instead, this responsibility has been usurped by private banks that not only control the supply of money, but enjoy the benefits of dictating policy as well. It is my belief that any monetary system, over a period of time, will lead to the same results.

Some country's debts outweigh their ability to pay!
Japan's debt is 239% of GDP.
Greece's debt is 158% of it's GDP.
Jamaica's debt is 121% of GDP.
Ireland's debt is 115% of GDP.
Even the US, Great Britain, France, and Canada are approaching levels of debt that outweigh their abilities to pay them off.

Money tends to accumulate in places of power. Those who have money do so at the expense of those who do not. Those who do not have money cannot afford the most basic things in life; food, shelter, education. Because wealth tends to accumulate, the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.

Because money and power are synonymous, people are driven to corruption in the pursuit for money. Money and profit seeking have caused individuals and organizations to pollute the environment, build weapons of mass destruction for sale to the highest bidder, and have even driven companies to produce products that are engineered to fail within a certain period of time. This practice has turned our planet into a toxic hellhole of discarded plastic, junk cars, and cheap goods that lie unwanted and broken in landfills.

Money encourages crime. Most crimes are not crimes of passion, but crimes for profit. When the only way to obtain what you need to live is money, people are willing to hurt others to get it.

I posit that money has made slaves out of most of humanity, and that it is NOT necessary for a thriving, educated, technologically advanced society. Money has had it's benefits, but with the level of advancement we've achieved it is no longer necessary for the continuation of the human race.

In this post I have touched upon some of the evils of money, and as this debate progresses I will more clearly articulate why money is no longer needed by offering ideas and solutions for incentivizing people to be productive, how goods and services could be produced and traded, and how society can depolarize and come together to move into the next era of human advancement. Society can and WOULD function better without "money."

edit on 2-1-2013 by Skyfloating because: spelling edit by request




posted on Jan, 1 2013 @ 01:03 AM
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Thanks TinkerHaus, for posting a very thorough argument. I'll get straight into it.


Instead of defining money, I will take a look at the monetary system as a whole.

Monetary system definition


medium of exchange: anything that is generally accepted as a standard of value and a measure of wealth in a particular country or region.


In this particular post I will address some points you have made.



My opponent will also tell you that goods and services cannot be easily exchanged without a central currency


They can't, as I explain below.

Money allows a person to build a universal sense of wealth. What I mean is, money can be saved by an individual for purposes of purchasing more expensive goods. Money isn't perishable, where as goods are. In an instance such as a bank robbery, money is easily replaceable, compared to physical goods which aren't. Even if insured, money is an easy and practical way to provide an individual with an equal value to the good that has been stolen or damaged, or a scenario which is covered by insurance.

Without money a few scenarios, where implications might be found are

- Hire purchase or lay-by payments.
- Renting or buying a house -

With money, after selling a product, the seller is able to purchase an item they would like to purchase. In a scenario where goods are exchanged for goods, it would be difficult to complete an agreeable trade, as both parties would have to be accepting of the goods being exchanged.

A monetary system allows individuals to be given interest, or ''rewarded'' for saving money.

My opponent brings up a valid point, by saying, their is more debt owing, than money in circulation.

However, this is not so much to do with a monetary system as it is to do with the banks, in our monetary system.




How to exclude the creation of credit by the banks? Simple. Instead of requiring a 10% or 20% deposit to the Central Bank for every loan given by banks, a 100% deposit should be required. That means, a bank can collect the savings of it’s clients, it can deposit them at the Central Bank and it can then, and only then, give out loans up to the same amount it has deposited.


This link will explain more, as I cannot quote large amounts of text.



www.hasslberger.com...


This doesn't mean a monetary system is better. This means the debt crisis can be fixed. However this wont happen while private monopoly run by private banking corporations is lending money to the government.
It is possible to to have a monetary system where there is an equilibrium in money in circulation and debt.

This also addresses the point



The monetary system has created some of the most corrupt institutions in the world today. Governments no longer control the issuing of money and the money supply.


Without the ability to abuse the government terms on borrowing money and abusing money itself, this can be changed.

An alternative system would also be likely to promote crime.
A barter system as mentioned earlier, for obvious reason may have the same problems with crime. The only way profit fueled crimes can be abolished, is when nothing has value. This wouldn't work for many reasons. While I agree, that money is the cause of crimes, I believe it would prove to be an implication of other systems too.




Because money and power are synonymous, people are driven to corruption in the pursuit for money.


This problem has been combated in a previous less favored form of a monetary system. This of course being the communist system. Due to the idea of central control, this system was not favored and is no longer used today in society. Another reason for the unpopularity was the fact, hard work was rewarded the same as what we could consider easy work.

An interesting statement you made was believing I would argue this point.



money provides a necessary incentive for people to be productive.


Communism, actually proves this point.



State own firms have less incentive to increase efficiency (eg they do not innovate or conduct R and D). Laborers have little incentive for hard work, resulting in decrease in productivity


The reason why is they had no reason to increase efficiency. They would gain the same income, no matter whether they worked more or less efficient. Obviously a major factor in the concern of the quality of products.
Therefore, yes, I do believe hard work being rewarded with an increase in income provides an incentive for not only harder work, but work of higher quality. Of course, there is a loss of consumer sovereignty and individual liberty

I used communism as an example as it provides an idea alternative to bartering. Also providing a scenario closer to an alternative to a monetary system.

I would like my opponent to provide or clarify an alternative to a monetary system.
Over to you TinkerHaus.



posted on Jan, 2 2013 @ 10:59 AM
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Thank you curiousrb for your quick and well-worded response. I would like to address some of your points and offer some ideas about how a money-free society would work.

Money has been helpful in building all the bad and good things in the society we live in - I submit that we are beyond the point where we need money. With our current level of technology, we have moved beyond a point where personal gratification and individual wealth are needed to advance society to a more equal and honorable society.



egalitarianism

1: a belief in human equality especially with respect to social, political, and economic affairs
2: a social philosophy advocating the removal of inequalities among people


In a truly egalitarian society, everyone would be equal and there would be no need for money. This eliminates the need to buy a home, sell or buy a product, purchase food, buy insurance, or accumulate wealth. Everyone works toward a common goal, and everyone has what they need not only to survive, but to thrive in their own individuality. People don't need a monetary incentive to be productive members of society. In fact, this clip from RSA Animate shows that monetary incentives only work for menial tasks - tasks that could easily be handled by automation.



One theme I notice in your argument is that you have already accepted that a monetary system is necessary. Because of this you use our current system to make your argument. You fail to consider that a society could work for the benefit of all, and that there would be no reason for trade whatsoever. Your explanations for why we need a monetary system fall back on the fact that we already live in a self gratifying monetary system, and therefor are flawed.

For example, you state:



Money allows a person to build a universal sense of wealth. What I mean is, money can be saved by an individual for purposes of purchasing more expensive goods.


Without money a person wouldn't need a sense of wealth. People would instead have a sense of community, family, joy and fellowship with their neighbors.



Without money a few scenarios, where implications might be found are

- Hire purchase or lay-by payments.
- Renting or buying a house -


In a society without money, there would be no reason to hire anyone. People would do jobs they have passion for. With our current state of technology most of the menial jobs worked by laborers could be taken over by machines. This would allow for people to pursue their passion - we would have more thinkers, artists, musicians, and even engineers. Crime rates would plummet, and could arguably cease to exist. If everyone had access to everything they could want or need, there would no longer be a profit motive. This would eliminate a wide array of crimes, from petty theft to corporate crime.



A monetary system allows individuals to be given interest, or ''rewarded'' for saving money.


As I have demonstrated above, there is no reason for a monetary "reward." People actually perform better in cognitive situations when money is taken out of the equation.



My opponent brings up a valid point, by saying, their is more debt owing, than money in circulation.

However, this is not so much to do with a monetary system as it is to do with the banks, in our monetary system.


As I have demonstrated in my opening post, money accumulates in places of power. History has shown that over a period of time all monetary systems lead to a pseudo caste system. This creates a situation where the poor need to borrow, and the rich are the only ones with money to lend. This has created a violent cycle in which men fight and die to free themselves from economical oppression, and banks send men to fight and die to regain control of the economy.



This doesn't mean a monetary system is better.


I agree with you on this one. Excellent point!


Now for solutions.



"Bear in mind that we don't need money, we only need the things money buys..."

As I have touched upon above, we are at a point technologically that most jobs and services could be completely automated. Often times when considering this question, people wonder how we would get electricity, clothes, hamburgers and Pepsi without money. We don't need people to produce these things. We need to make a concentrated effort toward automating the manufacturing processes.

I understand it is hard for most people to imagine a society without money, and many reject the idea outright as "socialism" or "communism." I am asking that you try to lose your preconceived notions in order to give this idea the attention and considering it truly deserves.

I am running out of space for this post, but in my final argument I will focus heavily on how a society might function without money, and how all of humanity would benefit from a money-free society.



posted on Jan, 2 2013 @ 05:50 PM
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I'll get right into it.

Throughout your post, you bring up the point of automating certain jobs.
This is practical for some jobs, but for other careers, it wouldn't work.

- Therapist
- Counselor
- Architecture
- Highly theoretical tasks done by skilled experts (physicists, biologists, chemists, neurologists, etc...)
- AI programmer
- Engineer

The list could go on.
Customer service could also be one. Many people aren't fond of dealing with AI and automated messages in a customer service type scenario.

I want to look at teaching. A job which i believe is possible to be automated by a few different ways. But it shouldn't.

The reason why is the ability to learn when being taught by something with no emotional or social abilities.
I was reading this in my recent Scientific American magazine.

Find the article here

A nice quote from the article

If a person with deep knowledge lacks empathy and relationship management skills, he will fail as a teacher.


Automation is not necessarily beneficial to society.

Why should some people have to work and others not?
Believe me when I say, there are some genuinely lazy people, who will refuse to work. And education is an industry which must be met with adequate professors and teachers.



everyone has what they need not only to survive, but to thrive in their own individuality.


I assume you are talking about, things we want rather than need are available for no cost. Firstly, again, some people would take advantage of this and many people would no longer bother to work when they can have what they want.

This leads me a little off topic, but relevant to explain an implication in a society where everything is free.

Resource exploitation. For everyone to live at a standard of first world living, we would consume an extreme amount of resource. Food, metals (especially rare metals), land.

This in itself could lead to conflict.
I don't believe oil rich nations would be willing to give up their oil for free. Rather they would keep it and stick to their own research and technological advancements. Selfish nations wouldn't thrive in this system.
Same with mineral and metal rich nations.

If prices did not exist, resources, human or otherwise, would not be allocated properly and major disruptions would occur. Money serves an incredibly important role in a complex economy. It is used to solve the allocation problem. Without money and the pricing mechanism, there is a huge problem -- no one has any idea of what to make, how much, when, and where to send it.

This is a major concern with an automated system where everything is free.

Money is not the cause of many of the problems you have mentioned. The cause is scarcity of resources -- which would be far worse in a society without money.




As I have demonstrated above, there is no reason for a monetary "reward." People actually perform better in cognitive situations when money is taken out of the equation.


But do they want to perform? When they don't have to? Productivity is a major concern in your society you have mentioned. It works both ways. When money is involved, people work too hard for it. When it's not involved, only those genuinely interested in an available job will work. It's not a viable idea. People would not work toward are common goal. Everything would be done for us and we would become lazy and have no desire to advance. A lot of people would love the idea of a permanent holiday. The common goal would be ''be lazy''. We can't advance in a society were only are few could be bothered to do so.

Many would find prosperity and efficiency more desirable than a dawdling society and money serves an incredibly important role in a complex economy.

Over to you.



posted on Jan, 2 2013 @ 06:52 PM
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curiousrb, you keep talking about the money motivator..

Without money we would no longer have people who hate their jobs. We would still need therapists, counselors, architects, engineers of all types, scientists, etc. I was very clear in stating that these are the jobs that could NOT be automated. Typically people in these types of careers get involved in this work because they have a passion for it - very few are driven at all by the monetary rewards.

The RSA Animate clip I included in my previous post talks about a study in which economists learned that once you get above rudimentary skill, monetary incentives do not work. This was a study funded by the FRB. In fact, when you take the issue of money off the table people with jobs that require a high level of cognitive skill perform much better. I highly recommend you review the video.

I believe I was very clear when I said that only rudimentary, menial jobs could be automated - there will still be plenty of people with a passion for their field to fill the more more conceptual, creative jobs. Not only would more people be able to receive an education to work in a field they were passionate about, but the "bag eggs" would be naturally phased out of those fields by the people who loved what they did. We would have higher quality engineers, architects, teachers, scientist, etc.

You continue to mention resource allocation and a "complex economy." Remember, for a world to work without money we would have had to reach a level of cooperation we have yet to achieve. There would no longer be a reason for competitiveness in economics, competition or a reason to grab as many resources as you can and horde them. We would also no longer have any reason for "Planned Obsolecense" and products would be engineered to last as long as they possible could. This would drastically waste and the need for more and more resources.



Many would find prosperity and efficiency more desirable than a dawdling society and money serves an incredibly important role in a complex economy.


Again, I think I have successfully argued that taking away the issue of money actually makes creative people do BETTER work. This includes, artists, scientists, engineers, software developers, musicians, architects, doctors, furniture makers, etc. Getting rid of money wouldn't create a "dawdling" society, but rather a society full of driven, passionate, and highly capable people.

You talk about oil rich nations, but did you ever consider that if we had no monetary system we might have already evolved past burning fossil fuels? It's no secret that the oil industry has continued to reign in part because they use their money and power to lobby governments AGAINST funding renewable sources of energy?

The subject of this debate is "Society would function better without a monetary system." Whether or not you believe that it's possible to get there, it is fairly safe to say the following:

- Cities would be engineered to be as efficient as possibly.
- Far fewer people would be forced into crime to survive.
- Education would be freely available, thus creating a highly skilled, very intelligent population.
- The poor would cease to exist. Everyone would have equal opportunities and even if some people chose to just dream their life away, plenty of people would follow what they were passionate about.
- Products would be made to last, which would eliminate waste.
- Divisiveness would all but disappear, allowing mankind to focus on goals for all of humanity, instead of just goals for the individual.
- Private interests would no longer strong arm competing technologies out of the market.
- There would be a collective interest in health, the environment, and global security.

We only want to have a better car, or a nicer shirt, or a louder stereo than the next guy because we live in a self-gratifying, take the money and run society. Without the profit motivator divisiveness and ability to own more than your neighbor, this spirit of rapacious competitiveness would fade away.

So the question that has been asked in this debate is this; Would a society function better with no monetary system? I believe the answer is a resounding YES. We are an ingenuitive and passionate species. We have the technology and ability to find better solutions for moving around goods and services than turning the entire world into wage slaves. Until society learns to focus outward, instead of inward, we are destined to be divided, oppressed and individualistic.

Perhaps humanity isn't ready yet for this type of equality, but we would most definitely function better without a monetary system.

How society might look with no money:

www.thevenusproject.com...
www.theresourcebasedeconomy.com...
www.theresourcebasedeconomy.com...

Thank you for the opportunity to debate this topic with you



posted on Jan, 2 2013 @ 08:09 PM
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Very nice and timely reply.

Let me bring up a few of the points you have made.




once you get above rudimentary skill, monetary incentives do not work


Lets look at getting to that skill first, rather than already being there.
An example of a career path, which cannot be automated is theoretical physics. Currently studying the topic, I know it is a very difficult and at times, stressing topic to study. Lets look at the requirements for a Ph. D. Known as a doctorate.

Full time study, would require 3-4 years of commitment to a very complex subject.
Part time study would require 6-8 years of commitment.
Like I say, it is not an easy topic.

Source

The study is what is a turn off to many people. They can't be automated for a reason. They are complex careers, and for that, they require intelligent people, who have dedicated years of their life to learning and studying the profession.

This is where the flaw of free living comes to better light. Like I said before, people will take advantage of the system. IMO, there will be a lot less numbers than you think willing to take up the task of studying the subjects requiring intense amounts of knowledge while others live their life and get by, enough to live in comfort. I can see why people would be willing to out of curiosity, when they finish study, but it's not easy. From personal experience, it would be difficult to dedicate a lot of time studying when many people don't contribute to anything worthy.

Such an economic system would have to be a planned economy, so we are able to manufacture, produce and supply the correct amount of goods.


In an entirely centrally-planned economy, a universal survey of human needs and consumer wants is required before a comprehensive plan for production can be formulated


This would be essential to your described society or a shortage and/or excess of products may occur. This goes against your ideology.
This is a massive flaw, considering if a shortage occurred, who would miss out? A bit of human nature would occur and this is where we would see inequality. There would be a consistent pattern where a certain demographic would miss out. A trade system wont change human nature.


Economist Robin Hahnel notes that, even if central planning overcame its inherent inhibitions of incentives and innovation, it would nevertheless be unable to maximize economic democracy and self-management


Management of resource in this system is also flawed. Some sort of governance would be needed to allocate resources to what and where. This governance would mean that not everything is free. What we are allocated is free. We wouldn't have access to excess of what we needed. If there was no management of materials and resource, there would be inequality. People would take more than they needed, leaving less for others. Like I said earlier, there will be people that would take advantage of the system. It is inevitable.




You talk about oil rich nations, but did you ever consider that if we had no monetary system we might have already evolved past burning fossil fuels?


Oil is used for a lot more than that. Recently oil has been found able to purify water as stated in the same issue of Scientific American, mentioned earlier. Water is again, a very important part of life and it's becoming more and more scarce. I'm not too sure the oil rich nations would be willing to give up something so valuable.

Moving on.




Education would be freely available, thus creating a highly skilled, very intelligent population.


In my country, education is close to free. About $100.00 a year where I studied. This hasn't changed. yet, people don't take advantage of how cheap it is. Just because it's available, it does not make it appealing. You underestimate the number of people that would be comfortable with no aspirations, as long as they could live comfortable with out working.

Money has played a vital part in our history, and has lead to inventions used widely around the world. Common knowledge and historical events prove the incentive money provides. Although it's not always a factor it has been one in many case. The apple company is one. The innovative technology comes from the desire to make more money. If it didn't, the ''iPhone 5'' wouldn't be only a fraction different from the ''Phone4''. Obviously, it was designed to just get it out on to the market to make a lot of money. But it isn't useless technology, it is very advanced.

To conclude, money has been good and bad, but is necessary for efficiency and prosperity. For the human race to flourish. Therefore ultimately meaning, a monetary system is beneficial to society.

It has been a pleasure to debate this topic TH.



posted on Jan, 10 2013 @ 02:48 AM
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Judgments:





Round One:

TinkerHaus came out solid, rock solid, and had one of the best on topic openings I've read so far. Very impressive.

However, curiousrb responds nicely, and as a judge I looked beyond his confusing quotes to determine what he was actually presenting. He countered with very solid points about Communism and productivity.

I cannot give the round to either, as it is balanced between a strong position pro, and an equally preserved con. Tie.

Round Two:

TinkerHaus begins to shine in round two, presenting an ideology of a society where money isn't a primary concern, allowing menial tasks to be automated, and effectively negates the concepts of "Socialism" and "Communism".

curiousrb responds with a flurry of jobs that can't be automated, and furthers his point by asking about the benefits of an automated society. With that, he falls into a cleverly laid trap placed by his opponent, and allows himself to wander off topic.

The round goes to TinkerHaus.

Round Three:

TinkerHaus doesn't relent, and pursues his position tenaciously, reasserting the topic and providing many solid examples of how society would be better served by a cashless system.

curiousrb isn't finished yet, and goes on to state statistics about higher education and people abusing the system, as well as fortifying the point of the unwillingness of people to pursue higher education. Good points, but he stumbles a bit when he proscribes a system of "allotment", which becomes a reference back to Communism, revealing a bias that is not fully developed within the remainder of the debate.

I would like to see a rematch between these two opponents one day, as both turned in solid performances, but in all honesty, round three goes to TinkerHaus, and thus, the debate.








Both TinkerHaus and curiousrb bring clear and concise facts to the table in their opening statements. Both posts are thought provoking and manifest a will to position the grounds of their respective sides. Well played by both fighters. This first round is a tie.

The second post sees TinkerHaus strongly reinforcing his earlier statements while curiousrb’s counter post simply answers a few of TinkerHaus’ points. This round goes to TinkerHaus.

The final post, once more is an excellent read from both parties. TinkerHaus remained focused thoroughly and curiousrb does an excellent job at debating here, especially when he picks up on the major flaw of TinkerHaus’ position:

” We wouldn't have access to excess of what we needed. If there was no management of materials and resource, there would be inequality. People would take more than they needed, leaving less for others. Like I said earlier, there will be people that would take advantage of the system. It is inevitable.


This final round goes to curiousrb which leaves the match at a tie. Nevertheless, for showing a constant presentation along with a strong and factual hypothesis throughout the match, I must give this one to TinkerHaus.

An excellent read for sure and both fighters need to be congratulated on a job well done. Thumbs up.





Tinkerhaus wins this Debate.





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