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THE FIFTY DOLLAR NOTE
by Dennis Collins

A travelling salesman booked a room at a hotel in a little country town, paid with a $50 note on which was some purple texta scribble, and went off on his business

The Hotelier, things being quiet took the $50 note to the butcher and paid off a meat bill. The butcher took the $50 note to the grocer and reduced his debt to the grocer by that amount. The grocer took the $50 note to the boot mender and paid for shoe repairs for himself and his family. The boot repairer took the $50 note to the Hotelier to pay for some beer he had on credit.

Just then the travelling salesman came in saying he couldn't stay the night and could he have his $50 back. He is given the same texta marked $50 note he originally gave the hotelier, and is told the story of the series of debts which had been paid by that particular note. The salesman smiled and said "Isn't that remarkable, and even more so because the note is a forgery."

This forged note had in effect allowed conveniently:

  1. The Hotelier to barter beer for meat.
  2. The Butcher to barter meat for groceries.
  3. The Grocer to barter groceries for shoe repairs.
  4. The Bootmaker to barter shoe repair service for beer.

The forged $50 note simply acted as a common medium of exchange that made the transactions simple and allowed commerce (the exchange of goods and services) to flow easily. The same thing could have been done with a cash cheque even if the cheque was written against no funds just as long as nobody banked it.

Money ought to be like the forged $50 note in the story - a servant. The problem with our current money system relates to:

  • Who is creating our money
  • How they put it into circulation
  • How they remove it from circulation.

The current money system - basically 3,000 years old, uses money to enslave through debt, and not to serve society as it should. Food for thought.