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May 17, 2024

"We need a nobler economics not afraid to discuss spirit and conscience, moral purpose and the meaning of life." --Theodore Roszak

What If Money Expired?

We are surrounded by useful myths: money is one of them. Yet many times, the myths we interact with on a daily basis go unchallenged: we experience the impact of the collective shared belief in the myth – the benefits and the costs – yet take it for granted that we can question whether the myth is serving its intended purpose, or has been hijacked.  Silvio Gesell questioned the myth of money more than a century ago, proposing that money should be put to work  because money at work reflects our highest potential more than accumulation strategies. Without an adjustment to the money system we are subject to “the exploitation of our neighbor’s need, mutual plundering conducted with all the wiles of salesmanship, [as] the foundation of our economic life,” he lamented. Gesell’s advocacy for a system where money slowly expires has prompted an exploration of other money policy ideas, explored in this piece where we are challenged to engage our own “probing curiosity of our economic institutions so that we may reimagine them to better serve the societies we want to create.”


What myths are we absentmindedly contributing to that reflect or do not reflect our values? Pay attention to the exchanges you make today: conversations, commerce, professional projects, etc. What is being exchanged and how does it reflect your personal values?
Write down your thoughts.