Letter: What if we stopped using money?

Graphic by Lori Deaton

Life can be confusing, and sometimes you just can’t see the forest for the trees. I was reading this on the WLOS website (avl.mx/anb) when I decided to write this.

There is a free vaccine available at Ingles that mitigates the extreme effects of COVID. In my opinion, the reason that everyone has not received the vaccine can be back-traced to the need for the accumulation of wealth. I am not attempting to describe a conspiracy theory because I do not believe in them. One example of many would be that for-profit media choose money over life. This is not a new concept by any means and has led to a great deal of misinformation. The point of this letter is to possibly begin a local discussion about what life would be like if we stopped using money.

I have had trouble describing this in my past, and then suddenly one day, I could see the forest. As a brief statement, absolutely nothing would be different except we would not use money. I mean this literally, in that you would do everything exactly as you do it today, with the exception of there would not be money. There would not be cashiers at the Ingles, but there would still be Ingles.

I have always considered this from an engineer’s perspective and how my life would be different if education and technology did not come with a price tag. I started thinking about how the medical and housing industries would be different if money were not used. Once again, literally nothing else would change except that you would no longer use money. This would be the only difference.

If this happened, you would still need to go to whatever job you do today, but it could change in the future. I really like the job I have now, and I feel like I am important to the company. The reason I have my job today, however, is to accumulate wealth for an individual who is not me. This is the single drawback to my job and has caused a lot of stress over the years. I understand this is “how business works”; however, it’s lame.

I used to work in the restaurant industry, and this feeling was worse because the restaurants did not pay a living wage. The company I work for now pays living wages, but the reason for the company and why I have my job is for profit for an individual. If we stopped using money, I would be a person who works instead of a worker who is a person.

If you have a couple of minutes, think of how your life would change if we just stopped using money, but everything else stayed the same. I believe the best outcome of this would be that everyone would have the same opportunities and access to health care, technology and education.

Thanks for reading my novel!

— Robbie Pitts
Green Mountain


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6 thoughts on “Letter: What if we stopped using money?

  1. Phillip Williams

    Ah yes – trading a day’s work cleaning the doc’s office in exchange for a flu shot or swapping a sack o’ taters or apples or turnips for a warm hat – of course, you will have to grow said veggies before you can trade ’em……or a few loads of firewood in exchange for the local mechanic fixing your truck.

    Of course, down thru the decades, there was an option called “taking it out in trade” for those who had certain needs from those who had certain charms to trade….the thing about barter is that you MUST have something that someone else wants or needs – and that your prospective bartering partner has something that you want or need and is willing to work something out. My great grandaddy and his eldest son, my great uncle, used to work all day long for a fairly well-off neighbor in exchange for a “turn” of corn or a side of pork. At least I reckon they didn’t have to pay taxes thataway.

    And I don’t think there would be more equality, by the by. There are and always will be folks who can work harder and longer, or have a skill that few others possess, or who are prettier and better at some things – and always, always, the greedy ones and those who will take advantage of whatever system there is.

    O well matey, if things keep going the way they are, you may get to experience how the barter system works for real….

    • Lesko Brandon

      The barter system works every day. The only difference is you are trading Federal Reserve Notes for people to work on your house, your car, the food you buy, and everything else. If it has no value to you, you don’t accept the terms and get someone else more acceptable.

      As to the original poster, you don’t like capitalism, yet won’t admit it. If you don’t like making your employer money, you should quit, start a business that offers the customer something your employer doesn’t, instead of griping about it. Maybe that’s why they are the employer, their ideas are better than yours, maybe they started from where you are now, and did something about it!.

  2. Boo Radley

    Funny! Just as I was roasting chestnuts this rainy evening, I thought I should contact Atticus Finch to re-do my will.

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