Stone Money—Killroy513

Money is one of the most important things in this world.  It makes the world go round. There is many different forms of money used around the world, its value is recognized by its significance. For the Yap people their currency is made up of lime stone rocks carved into cylinders. These rocks would be decorated and customized for whoever had them made. These stones, being huge in size, would not move from its final placement. The Yap people relied on word of mouth for financial records. This is almost like today’s modern credit system. Our credit system is based on invisible money that appears electronically.

Currency can be anything, as long as it has value to whomever wants it. In the past money was made of preshes metals. Gold was the most saute after currency since it does not really loose its value. Most countries used gold to back their paper currency. The United States of America used gold to back the currency. During the Great Depression, many countries wanted to insure their assets would be secured. France being one of them, wanted to secure its credit in gold. The United States dived the French shares. Eventually this would change. The gold would not be used to back the currency’s value. This would start the modern day system of credit.

Inflation is good and bad for an economy.  To much inflation is bad because it discredits the moneys worth. Prices for everyday goods would jump. An example of this is Brazil. It had to much inflation and no one had money to buy the things they need. Eventually the currency was changed and the economy leveled out. This made it better for the Brazilian people.

In the end money is truly one of the most important things to have. It can be anything as long as it retains its value.

Stone Money—unknowntrendsetter

Many people who I have a close relationship with has told me that it is near impossible to live a comfortable life or various fun activities without having money. In my experience I can agree with that general statement. The way people view money in the world is really interesting. Especially the people who are in control of regulating it in certain areas of the world as well as people who own large amounts of currency. In general, across all economic backgrounds and social classes, place very high value on money. Currency is used to control just about everything. There’s a famous quote that i am sure that everyone has heard once or twice in their life. It’s, “Money makes the world go around”. As is to be understood, if all of the citizens in any country were to completely abandon the use of a certain currency, that form of  money would have no value. A Great example of this is as the NPR podcast discusses how in the country of Brazil, a certain currency was being devalued everyday and making people’s lives harder to survive. When Brazil wanted to build expensive buildings in the middle of the jungle, it cost a lot of money to make. So what they decided to do was to just print more money. This caused severe inflation to their country for decades and make it harder for people to purchase daily necessities like food. Many different stores completely changed their prices regularly everyday to try and put the correct value on their product so that money could be made and continue to flow. This meant that people had to constantly spend money as soon as they got it because the money was losing value daily. People pretty much completely lost faith in their country’s currency. NPR podcast used the example of the lady running in front of the price changer and picking up the product in the grocery store before it became too expensive. People really fought to make sure they got things at the lowest possible price before it was too late. Pretty soon this became very impossible to keep up with since people were losing a quality of life and the trust was lost. If I were in that position, I would have most likely done the same thing. This forced the country to come up with a brand new value system. People put their trust in the new form of currency, which was named the Brazilian Real.  

When I read the story on the island and currency of Yap, I found it’s story rather interesting. Discovering how their currency was different to that of most of the world was very interesting. Hearing about the concept of the trust that the people of yap have in each other and their capital was shocking to me seeing that the country could easily go back and check to see if the money is there. In the beginning, I thought it was foolish to not get confirmation for the money to build the home, then I thought about how the banks are being run in our country and our digital currency. The majority of the people in the country gets paid a direct deposit, where you are not able to see the physical paper money in hand and doesn’t question where it is exactly, yet it is understood to be owned by you. In the United States, our earnings are supposed to be secured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, or the FDIC. This corporation began under the new deal crafted by the president at the time, Franklin D. Roosevelt, as a way to restore the country to its former financial and economic norm. Even before that, during the age of the international gold standard, since many Americans did not have gold, it regulated how the American dollar’s value in comparison to other countries. For example, as it has been stated in Friedman’s essay, “The Island of Stone Money”, France’s currency: the Franc, had more value than the American Dollar through gold per ounce. This happened because citizens in the United States as well as the country’s gold reserve did not have as much gold as France. The example that Friedman used in is article was The original conversion of dollars to gold at the time was $20.67 per ounce of gold. As the US did not own as much gold as other countries, the value dropped and was called in the country’s newspapers as the draining or “The Loss of Gold”.  This is what helped caused the United States’ Great Depression. Once the country loses currency/valued goods, the economy begins to shift towards a recession, and in this severe case, a depression. NPR talks about Ben Bernanke’s role at the Federal Reserve. Bernanke works at the national bank called the Federal Reserve. In times of “economic limbo”, the government will try to work with the reserve as well as various other banks around the country to regulate the economy, spending and so on. The banks will usually lend money to the reserve from a special bond that has been held for years, as revealed by NPR’s podcast on the subject. This could sometimes be dangerous since if it is too little, nothing will change in the economy. If it is too much, there will be a certain amount of inflation the country might receive, which the value of the dollar will decrease.

In my opinion, there aren’t that many differences in the basic structures of the banking system comparing Yap to that of the United States. Both countries basic structures rely on some form of trust in another person or people that money is in fact owned by someone else and can be used at anytime, with or without being physically moved anywhere else. The only difference is that the Yap currency has to be made and counted for. In the US, there are not enough physical paper money to match the amount of electronic money that is being made daily. Most people just check their online bank account to see if the money is there.  

In conclusion, After viewing all of the sources provided, it has not weakened my thoughts towards money, but the exact opposite has happened. In order for money to help others everyday, it needs to be valued highly so everyone can work towards having a certain standard of living.

Stone Money—phillygirl

A big limestone wheel is different from an electronic bank balance, but they’re both considered money because the limestone wheel is equal to the same worth of money. As “The Invention of Money” mentions, ‘the stone money at the bottom of the sea, it exists. It’s still good money. Someone owns that stone even though it’s sitting on the bottom of the ocean.’  A limestone wheel and money is completely equal. Now an electronic bank balance is different because all it is digits informing you of how much money you have. Meanwhile a big limestone wheel is physically money. However, you can exchange money from your electronic bank balance to buy a big limestone wheel and it’ll be considered an equal exchange. For example, in stonemoneyessay.pdf  they say “After concluding a bargain which involves the price of a fei too large to be conveniently moved, its new owner is quite content to accept the bare acknowledgement of ownership and without so much as a mark to indicate the exchange, the coin remains undisturbed on the former owner’s premises.” Which is saying an exchange with money and a limestone wheel is equally the same.

My thinking of money before today’s reading was that money was a very powerful thing. If you owned a certain amount of money then you were considered a dominant person. If you’re known to have a lot of money then you know that you’re doing the right thing in life. In my opinion, after learning about money I think it is pointless. Regardless of how much money you have, it doesn’t determine anything because it’s technically not there. You never actually get money in your hand, you barely see it. You just get a little receipt that indicates that you have money. I don’t think money is important as it seems. Money is just a factor in life that is considered to help us get by. In “The invention of money” the author explains that money is fiction. They mention, ” It is not physical, it is just numbers going back and fourth online.” In “Why Money Has No Real Value?” Christianson says, “Otherwise, the money just sits as useless piles in a bank vault somewhere.  It is the entrepreneur that gives value to any dollar investment, not the other way around.  The bottom line is that people and their abilities have real value, and money does not.” My view on wealth has also changed because I’ve always the goal in life was to become wealthy. Everyone wants to become wealthy. But after learning this, becoming wealthy is a waste of time honestly. You become as wealthy as you can get for you not to see or spend your money the way it is you want to be seen or spent. You barely see your money because as “The Invention of Money” explains you get your hard earned money direct deposited into your account and you pay your bills electronically. So you never really experience the feeling of hundreds of dollars actually being in your hands so it’s like you never earned it to begin with. After learning about what money really is about, that changed my perception on my faith in things I never see as well. In my opinion, if I don’t see it then it was never there.

Works Cited

Friedman, Milton. “The Island of Stone Money.” Diss. Hoover Institution, Stanford University , 1991.

“The Invention of Stone Money.” 423: The Invention of Stone Money. This Is American Life, WBEZ. Chicago . 7 Jan. 2011.

Christianson, Darren. “Why Money Has No Real Value?” 5 Aug. 2015.

Stone Money–pdqlover20

What is money, anyway? When I was younger I though money brought happiness. I also though money ruled the world. When someone would ask me where did I see myself in 10 years I would say “I hope to have a stable career so I can make a lot of money.” I use to compare money to success. As maturity set in I learned that money is not everything, we do not need money to be happy. I learned that happiness comes from within and that money is only a number.

If we all had the same amount of money the world would be a lot different. Money is what causes different social status in our country. For example some different social status are lower class, middle class and upper class.  Money can make people do evil things at times, money is a great tool for helping other but is nit needed at all times. If money could be controlled by the government America would be a calmer and stress free country. Many Americans work hard day to day but money is never currency as we get paid. Money has no actual value.

We can think of money as a spinning circle, circling from one person hand to the next. Discussed in NRP broadcast 423 The Invention of Money they question if “America really knows how much money is out there in dollars” and how could we ever find out the total amount each person owns. Back to my second paragraph if we all had an equal amount of money this would not be a topic to discus. I think America should money is not paying enough attentions to the amount of money that is out there.

The broadcast relates the Limestone wheel of the Yap community and the American dollar to having no physical value but having a value in faith. Another comparison is that a person does not have to physically have the stone in front of them but other automatically know they stone belongs to that person and they are wealthy. As in America I can relate this to famous people. Celebrities are know to have money with having to ask no questions. Money is what makes people who they are today which can be a good or negative result. My views on money have changed tremendously, they article “The Island of Stone Money” by Friedman Milton opened my eyes to the situations in France and Brazil that I knew anything about the text was very informational.

In the source I gather it states that the dollar bill has no real value other than iconic heros faces on them. The author explains that “money generally took the form of coins composed of precious metals such as gold and silver.” Which compares to the The Island of Stone Money article.

Works Cited

Friedman, Milton. “The Island of Stone Money.” Diss. Hoover Institution, Stanford University , 1991.

Moffatt, Mike. “Understanding Economics: Why Does Money Have Value?” 2017 https://www.thoughtco.com/why-paper-momey-has-value-1146309

“The Invention of Money.” This American Life. N.p., n.d. Web

Stone Money- NewEditionLover

Is money really fictional? As I listened to the story of the “Stone Money Of Yap ” from the planet money team i learned many new concepts in which I thought were very interesting. I spent a long time thinking were money goes and how people in the United States go about using it. How does money just disappear without anybody knowing where it went? I view money as a concept of life and without it you basically cant survive. Without money you cant do the things you want and live life without any worries. But in the end is money always there? Do we just work just to have the idea or thought of having money? If my mom goes to work just to pay bills and pays online she technically didn’t pay them the money from her pockets but from her debit or credit card. Now this has me thinking am I just another worthless person just thinking that money is gonna cause me happiness in the long run? I’ve learned through the broadcast that dollar bills represent the idea of money and money is never currency as you get paid. They say this because most of the money simply doesn’t exist and money is technically created out of nothing. That idea had me confused because how doesn’t money exist? Without money no ones daily routine would ever be the same again. Money comes and goes but it is a very beautiful sight to have when the money hits your account after tremendous amounts of working. When you make a purchase its basically like your signing your rights over and that’s it. Having money to me means that I can be happy and flourish with life. Money does exist and it shows how much status and “stain” you have in your town or city. What does money mean to you? Money gives me a feeling that I’ve never felt before !

In the article “The Island Of Stone Money” by Milton Friedman taught me a little more about wealth and supremacy. How can you and your family be known but not have anything to show for it? Is the idea of wealth a good thing generally speaking you basically have nothing but you just a known figure. To me money is very real. The bible claims that money is the route to all evil? But without money I wouldn’t have everything that I’ve ever wanted! Money has gotten me a car, food ,shelter and all my worlds greatest necessities. To me money makes you who you are without the money your nobody and your just another broke person, with money you can have all the nice things in the world and have all the power in your hand . You can clearly look at someone and tell whether or not they have money.

The source i gathered by Christopher S Penn article “The fictional nature of money” he describes lifes most precious values stating “without it ,you don’t eat,you dont have a place to live, no clothes to wear, unless it doesn’t involve money. Penn also stated  Money can be a tremendous amplifier of personal power. ” meaning you can basically break the rules and do what you want just because you have money.

Work Cited

Friedman, Milton. “The Island of Stone Money.” Diss. Hoover Institution, Stanford University , 1991.

“The Invention of Money.” 423: The Invention of Money. This Is American Life, WBEZ. Chicago . 7 Jan. 2011.

Christopher Penn. “http://www.christopherspenn.com/2010/05/the-fictional-nature-of-money/”

Stone Money–PlethoraGaming

One thing I have known for a long time is that money has different value in every country. For example when I traveled last year one dollar would be equivalent to 70 of that country’s currency. Three dollars can get be a box of Oreo, while two hundred and ten of the other country’s currency can get me about five boxes of Oreo’s. I have no doubt that we believe in a sort of fake money, after hearing about the concept of Stone Money.

Friedman said that the acknowledgement of ownership and believing it is all that it took for them to have something of value the stone money, and that acknowledgement is passed down. This surprised me because how can generations of people put trust in something, and not question it? Then I recalled, there is religion people putting faith in something even it may not be real; as long as we add some value to it, there are going to be people who believe it

The US setting aside gold for the French is exactly like the German marking a number on the fei, by adding belief to it, it adds value. This created a lower monetary value for the US, while increasing the France’s monetary value even thou the gold was not even moved a few feet away. This goes back to show that money is not fluid, just because someone makes someone else perceive something.

The story of How Fake Money Saved Brazil by NPR also shows the effect of how we perceive money. Their story was that the value of money were not stable, and in order to stabilize and return faith into the economy they had to create a fake currency. By changing how much the old currency values compared to the new currency and keeping products at the new currency the same, it restored the value of the new money. Because the money was no longer varied, products maintained a value, which restored faith in the economy

This plan could have easily back fired if they did not believe in the new currency, this shows how the faith we put into currency can change the value.

And now in modern-day we have electronic currency. We can now get paid by having our money deposited directly into our bank account. And because it shows a number we believe in it, even though it’s just a set of number; we use it to buy other things that have numbers written down to show its value. Even though we didn’t pay physical money for it, the electronic money is treated as real physical money. Money that is not backed by something valuable like gold etc… we can consider it fiction.

We also have other fiction money, such as Etherium and Bitcoin known as cryptocurrencies. Even though they have an equivalent value for other non-electronic currency, what would happen if they stopped using cryptocurrency or say they get banned in a country? That might be what we will be facing soon as there are rumors about cryptocurrency ban in China. According to Josiah Wilmoth just rumors of the ban dropped values of the currency by ten percent or more. This proves that because we believe is some rumor we affect the cryptocurrency.

To sum this all up, just because we perceive or believe something, we are capable of making a value for it.

 

Work Cited

Friedman, Milton. “The Island of Stone Money.” Diss. Hoover Institution, Stanford University , 1991.

Wilmoth, Josiah. “Ethereum, Bitcoin Prices Lead $20 Billion Slump Amid Chinese Regulatory Turbulence.” CryptoCoinsNews, Cryptocoinsnews, 9 Sept. 2017, http://www.cryptocoinsnews.com/ethereum-bitcoin-prices-lead-20-billion-slump-amid-chinese-regulatory-turbulence/.

Joffe-Walt, Chana . “How Fake Money Saved Brazil.” NPR.org. 4 Oct. 2010. 9 Sept. 2017. <http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2010/10/04/130329523/how-fake-money-saved-brazil&gt;&gt;

Stone Money–jadden14

Money plays a key role in today’s society. However, did you ever once consider the idea that the money you hold in your bank account or your wallet holds no value? What value does money hold? Upon reading the article The Island of Stone Money, I realized that money could very well be an idea, or just an acknowledgement of value. In the article, there is an island called yap in Micronesia that uses a large stone disk as their currency. The people would use these disks otherwise known as fei to buy houses and make other large purchases, and because they were so heavy they would sometimes just leave the stones where they were and acknowledge the owners.In one case, the yap set out on a mission to get a big fei stone. They went to an island, and created the massive fei out of stone from the island. It was said to be the biggest fei they have ever seen. Because of its massive size, it held much more wealth than the other fei. On the way back, there was some difficulties transporting the stone. The stone was lost at sea during a massive storm, and the entire island still acknowledged the wealth it held. I’m shocked by the idea that these people just kept track of who owned certain fei, as someone could have their entire savings out in front of someone else’s house. Friedman stated that later on, the Germans took control of the island, and found that the island badly needed new roads and requested that the district chiefs repair them. However, They wouldn’t listen, so the government painted black crossed on the fei, ultimately claiming the fei as their own. The people of yap saw this, and realized the situation they were in. Later on the roads were fixed, and the crosses were removed, restoring the people of yap’s wealth. To me this seems counterintuitive to accept that simply by marking one’s fei automatically they lose their wealth, however, they accepted it. I believe the people of the island of yap revealed to us that money is not a physical object, and that you can have wealth without any physical identity to show for it. The value of money can change, and has done so before.

Further research led me to look for current economies that can prove this. Upon reading the article How Fake Money Saved Brazil, I can never look at the dollar bill the same way anymore. In brazil, there currency has a rediculous inflation rate. At one point it was at 80%, which is astounding! If we had the same inflation rate in the United States, our economy would be in chaos! How people and shops in Brazil are able to operate is unbelievable, and the fact that the prices changed rapidly made it hard to buy goods at a consistent price. Holding onto money is useless in an economy like this, as the value of items will skyrocket and your money will hold no value. This makes it very intriguing to understand how the people in brazil save money, from what it sounds like, they don’t. Due to the rapidly fluxuating currency and price of goods going up, there is no reason to. The government tried to fix this, but in most cases it just made it worse. Many presidents in the past tried to freeze prices, print money, but all of their efforts have failed. There has always been inflation in brazil, and the people have learned to live with it.

Sometimes the best way to show how unpredictable money can be is to look at the digital kind, cryptocurrency. Bitcoin, otherwise known as BTC, is starting to become accepted as a new form of currency in the United States and in China. In the article The Bubble Bursts on e-Currency Bitcoin, I learned about how the crypto market experienced a significant crash in value. Right around April in 2013, Bitcoin reached an all time high of 266 USD, and was rocketing in value. Just three days later, it fell off a cliff. It went all the way down to 54$, and people were left with their devalued Bitcoins. This is very similar to our stock market crash, and because of that some investors were able to predict this event and didn’t buy. Some people sold their bitcoins and took their losses, others held theirs in hopes of a rise in value. Today, you can buy a bitcoin for 4187 USD, and it will probably change once your done reading this. Cryptocurrency, like stocks, can sporadically change in value in a moments notice. This currency is not quite like the USD, as it is much more susceptible to inflation. Think of cryptocurrency like a race car. It can take fast turns, accelerate and brake fast, and when in the wrong hands, can crash. The thing that’s interesting about bitcoins is, it’s just an icon on a screen, or a line of encrypted code. It has no physical backing, and is still widely traded to this day.

Even in the United States at one point their was an issue with our own currency. In Friedman’s article, he talks about the gold standard. France wanted to turn its dollars into gold, and at the time US currency was backed by a certain amount of gold, that was yours any time you asked for it. The United States didn’t want to have to ship all the gold overseas, so France agreed to just have them leave a note on a desk with the gold, kind of reserving it for them. This lowered the value of the US dollar, and helped raise the gold value in france. All over what may or may not be gold in the federal reserve. This acknowledgement of value, is what money in the world today is. The value in your account, the cash in your pocket, is no longer backed by anything. It’s crazy to think that our cash isn’t really worth anything physical, but it’s still there. We sleep soundly knowing that we have a set amount of value in an account somewhere, because the bank tells us we have it. When you look at all the currencies and how they are backed, you will find out that almost every one does not have a set value. They all run off what the government says they are worth. There is no more gold, or any sort of backing, just word or a stone in your yard. This idea that we call money is what paid for our house, food, and all our necessities. You may never get to even see your money, but you know it’s there.

 

Work Cited

Friedman, Milton. “The Island of Stone Money.” Diss. Hoover Institution, Stanford University , 1991.

Renaut, Anne. “The Bubble Bursts on E-currency Bitcoin.” Yahoo! News. Yahoo!, 13 Apr. 2013. Web.

Joffe-Walt, Chana . “How Fake Money Saved Brazil.” NPR.org. 4 Oct. 2010. 9 Sept. 2017. <http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2010/10/04/130329523/how-fake-money-saved-brazil&gt;>