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How bad money keeps good money down - Open Knowledge — LiveJournal

Feb. 10th, 2008

03:41 am - How bad money keeps good money down

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From:crasch
Date:February 10th, 2008 02:17 pm (UTC)
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Are competing currencies nice? Yes. Are they more trouble than they're worth in the long run? Yes.


And you know this...how?


Frankly, a world-wide universal currency would make the valuations of services and goods a lot easier in some respects.


Without legal tender laws, and other currency and banking restrictions, I think we would see the consolidation of the world's currencies around 1 or 2 competing standards.
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From:hiro_antagonist
Date:February 10th, 2008 02:31 pm (UTC)
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From history. As humanity has gone through the ages, we've moved in one direction, and that's towards less currencies rather than more. Simply because it makes life easier. In the end, I think that perhaps that's the best argument there is.
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From:crasch
Date:February 10th, 2008 02:36 pm (UTC)
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That humans have tended toward fewer currencies is no argument that it is a good thing. It could be, like crop monoculture, a behavior that has short term benefits, but long term hazards.

And it's certainly no argument that forcing a currency monoculture by government fiat is a good thing.
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From:hiro_antagonist
Date:February 10th, 2008 02:45 pm (UTC)
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It's an argument from a utilitarian point of view, yes. Does ease of use outweigh any advantages multiple currencies offer? Ease of use wins for human beings 99.99% of the time, and I think with good reason.

Everything is done at the barrel of a gun, when you get down to it. It's who's at the end of that gun that we have more control of these days than before.

From a cultural perspective (rather than an individual perspective), it's better for everyone to be on one standard instead of competing standards, even if the the standard isn't the best in the world.

I know this sounds like The Borg (TM) talk, but when it comes to matters that deal with society, one has to take the view of the whole rather than the view of the individual.
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