Value, Need and Capacity

On Tuesday 4th May 2021, we started work with: Value, Need and Capacity.

The questions we are exploring are related to exchange value which arises from using money that dislocates “price” from the use value of a good or service to humans both individually and collectively.

How money operates; possibilities for more direct representations of Value; and how perceptions of value are influenced, are the purposes of our exploration. See Money Technology

It would seem, from our work to date, that human activity is mediated by third party systems and structures, all of which involve money. Consequently, our relationship with and reliance on money are pretty fundamental issues.

An analogy

There is a busy four-way junction with traffic and pedestrian crossing lights near where I live and when one understands the sequence, one can safely cross the road when the pedestrian lights are on red, if one is watching the traffic and notes when it is safe to cross.

Let’s suppose we stubbornly adhere to the lights’ commands and only cross when green without taking any notice of the traffic; we are then reliant on everyone strictly adhering to the “rules”. Under these conditions, our information is mediated by a third party (traffic and pedestrian lights); “data” on the traffic is ignored, even though it’s available. If someone “jumps the lights” because of distraction or whatever, we are at risk.

James Corbett relates what happened when they turned off all the traffic lights in an urban area in Japan where he lives. In the absence of traffic lights, people took on the responsibility to decide for themselves when to slow down at a junction (if they were in a vehicle) or when it was safe to cross the roads. The data from the experiment showed both road safety and traffic flow improved.

No Data

In using money as a proxy for human value creation, we lose sight of the data related to it; no qualitative data is retained by current money, nor is the value of need. Without Need, nothing would be produced or created.

Without qualitative data, we lose sight of use value – price or money determines the value of everything while human and environmental needs are ignored by money.

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