WHO decides the world currency conversion rates? Or What? Who determined “developing” countries to be “poor” – even on account of the incredible wealth and resources which WERE and still ARE being stripped from them? It’s one-way giving and endless taking model put in place by the now-privileged countries who’s currency value is set higher than everyone else’s – ensuring that world domination continues further than you ever probably thought about or considered…
Perhaps it’s quite convenient Not to think about it.
Who or What decides what one currency is valued at compared with another?
“I care not who governs a country as long as I control its currency” …Ring any bells?
I wonder if ol’ mate Rothschild actually “made up” the whole “modern monetary system” and could see where all this would go… : To “derivatives” (made-up money made from interest paid on money that doesn’t actually exist) to “options” trading: Betting on trends – on funds/debt going up, down or into default even… And now to crypto: Still, people trying to make a buck without having to do any real work … keeping wealth in the hands of the “savvy”.
WHY are entire populations DEPENDENT on this “agreed” (determined by Who?) outside source of MONEY/Wealth…?? One has to wonder: What and Who gives “Them” the right to say what a particular population’s time and labour is worth… ? And as to what monetary exchange/value people will be given for their national currency.?….
Case in point: When you change $100 in Australian currency, you have equal to $1000 (ten times as much) in local Indonesian currency value… When you drink a “tall” beer while on holiday here in Bali ($4 for an Aussie), you’re drinking the dinner budget for an entire family. One beer can buy 1kg rice, half kilo chicken and at least 3 veg (which “back home” would cost around $30-40 if I’m not wrong. Comparatively, a “local” salary is around $10-15 a day (in Australian Currency as opposed to maybe $100/150 a day… as is the norm in Australia). No wonder Aussies love bali!!! What if we started asking a fair price for a beer here?
Why is it that “our” currency is worth ten times more?
When I was younger, I queried my Dad as to why other countries’ money seemed worth a lot less than ours and he said “its because they printed too much money ‘before’.” I wonder if he was correct – as America and Australia are printing money like its going out of style (since 2018) and yet their currencies haven’t devalued against other countries which “haven’t “ (as far as I’m aware)…??? It seems very …unfair. Why is that?
Maybe we never really think about our unfair privilege … or for how long a local person would have to save for – to have even a few days’ ‘holiday’ in a western country… (practically impossible). In Bali there is a term “kembali” used to denote the reciprocative action of giving… “Makasi kembali” means: Thanks coming back again, or “You’re welcome…” Would we in our own culture accept that giving someone $10 for $100 of work is acceptable? Oh, we can argue that it IS $100 VALUE in the local culture -however… we only had to do $10 work to earn that $100… So, it would it take more than 10-25 years, or possibly more than a lifetime, for someone in a “developing country” to save up for a mildly equivalent holiday in a “developed country”.
Further case in point: If I make a washing machine and you make something of similar value, we could trade fairly… However, with current exchange rates we are trading washing machines for matchbox toys… because of the unfair “value” currencies are set at.
Why is it that people have to sell their goods SO CHEAP to westerners? Why are antique shops here in bali filled with the stones used by farmers in remote islands to mark their farming areas and other artifacts of cultural heritage? Why can’t a person from “the tribes” walk into a bank and get a loan to start a business? Why must they live in a cement and tile house to be eligible to borrow money? There is huge disadvantage at the outset if you are born in a Post-Colonised/Unindustrialised country that we in the West are totally ignorant of.
Meanwhile, in our own countries… All the industries we’ve ‘lost’ due to trying to save a few bucks… Taking away the jobs which produce income and enable us to buy locally-made products… Leading us in a downward spiral… (In Australia, making us a stupid country that can’t even make a dress or a motorbike part… let alone a suitcase or a piece of furniture). We have lost the art of craftsmanship… the art of loving and being “lost” in one’s work (to some degree) and much more so for the younger generations. It’s Great seeing this current wave of Instagram videos demanding people pay the real work-product value to the human being creating these niche/hand-made products…but what about also fairly paying those people working in offshore factories making that product… are they DIFFERENT to “us”?
Exchange and trade presently is not reciprocal exchange at all… We are effectively living in a distortion which disproportionally advantages the “rich”… (and yes, if you grew up with a fridge in your house – YOU ARE one of the RICH people of this world). Its been going on for decades… and we are blind to our “unfair” privilege.
How can we bring about a new paradigm for the creation of currency (whether its a crypto or real coin) which enables a productive society and equitable wealth distribution…? I mean, money is (or should be) kinda like the oil or lube within the machine; enabling the parts to work/function and interact effectively. This [should be] the goal and reflection of the FUNCTION of money… as a vehicle for Economy – not to create scarcity or unfair advantage (as has occurred and is still perpetuating since the world currency system effectively cancelled localised former-trade and set international exchange rates)… After all, you can’t eat money right….? And graves dont have pockets.
All these “things” that we buy which have become part of our ‘lifestyle’. .. made more ‘cheaply’ by someone somewhere unknown to us with probably not-great working conditions… on land stolen by Colonists and reappropriated to a manufactured upper-class, (like in India for example where the British government assigned huge and areas to certain families effectively creating feudal land ownership…. And a huge wealth divide [copy and paste to the rest of the world]). I mean most, if not all of the countries which are now “Poor”/ “third-world” / “Developing” were NOT at all poor – PRIOR to Colonialism.
Prior to English invasion, India was a rich and highly productive country – only since Colonial take-over has such massive inequality and extreme poverty arisen, (and it’s core industries of wealth-production destroyed by the British… ) Similarly, with other places such as here in the “Spice Islands” of Indonesia (where the Colonials grabbed and stole as much treasures and resources as they possibly could)- and as is still ongoing in African countries where the natural resources are appropriated/owned/controlled by former Colonial powers; France especially… (blame the French).
Control of said-country – already achieved through Colonialism; (even though many countries claim to be “independent”) their resources are now conveniently owned by a rich/elite… while the newly “independent” governments are coerced into into borrowing huge amounts of their newly low-valued currency (from the Colonizers) to become “modernized”… A debt which can rarely if ever be repaid … a kind of “re-slavery” … entrenching disadvantage… all a set-up for the rich to get richer: An act of deceit happening before humanity’s very eyes…
Do you believe the rhetoric that “Africa is a poor country”….?
We have Grown Up in the illusion of the White-Savior mentality: A big fat dinosaur suit in which we can’t SEE the “other side” of History or the Reality of life for those affected. (“As our heads were bowed to Jesus, they took away our lands”). WHY are people in Post-Colonised Nations STUCK waiting for a pitiful amount of “money” which a government allows into “currency”? And how the hell DOES this ascend or descend in value compared to another country’s and determine the value of what is “traded”? My blood for your socks…
Actually money itself essentially is meaningless. It is just a symbol of debt for what you promise to reciprocate/reimburse to someone in return for what they have done for/given to you… It is a system for keeping record of transactions of work/energy … But it’s been used to deceive people and cheat them out of their labour-power, wealth and heritage, and fooled them into working for wankers.
It’s strange to think…, that either there is no more silver left in the Earth’s crust, or no more slaves to mine it… Cyanide leeching from Gold Mines; people being worked to death in Diamond Mines… Why does it seem that industries which formerly produced “wealth” or “value” are bloodthirsty, murderous and/or majorly socially, culturally and environmentally destructive? Are we not evolved enough to Recognize the destruction caused – and repay the debt or AT THE VERY LEAST redistribute/rebalance the wealth thereby derived more fairly?
Its time to use our human creativity and imagination to reimagine currency as something which can benefit everyone fairly, not just the ‘rich’. . .
We need Everyone to be productive and thriving for the greater benefit to be derived overall by Everyone. … And if people can be happy and less stressed … enjoying the life they choose… contributing by making what they want to make… Then,… wouldn’t society be an awesome and fun place to live!? Imagine what could be created!!! (unless you benefit from sales of anti-depressant drugs and medication to treat the physical symptoms of stress, depression and loneliness ).
So how Could money be better “created”.? If we all brought things to the market place that we trade with each other… As when we produce value creatively, whether it be food, education or physical products or services, it is our Right and function as people to create and be productive with our actions…. And equitably compensated.
Who ARE the Real wealth producers? Who CREATES value?
Who makes Something from ‘Nothing’?
If there were no monetary currency system, how would we trade?
What would be Most valuable to us?
Personally, I believe that farmers and craftspeople are the real producers of wealth at the fundamental level. Once… everyone farmed or made something and people traded on the basis of REAL VALUE in the marketplace… Before Communism took over in China, farmers were the wealthiest people in society. It takes years to create a productive healthy soil (from nothing) and we all know that if we lose our soil productivity, then we’re fuc#ed… I believe we need to have localized trade currencies so that people can become motivated and rewarded to create produce that’s useful to human life… Things that we have the power to make and trade with our own hands… That is our birthright, right.?
We live in a crucial time… when we could restore humanity’s benefit or let it become slave to being dependent on this financial system controlled and reaped by ?… (WHO was that again?) Further, at a societal level, we can have so much impact: Being from a “developed” country, where our currency is worth 10x more, And in terms of what we can use our unfair advantage towards: Contributing to the Whole – by enabling sustainable food production systems and building places/villages which reduce our overall dependence on the western monopolistic currency system… And improving the quality of peoples’ lives… utilizing our privilege to assist in transferring technologies like solar water pumps. We can relearn the arts and trades which our western culture has forgotten/outsourced – which are part of ALL our heritages; our oversight of which has made us dangerously dependent consumers…
We all have a choice in what we put our money towards (and in who subsequently benefits); We can come together and create places where we can live simpler and more fulfilling lives through responsibly and proactively contributing to projects. Perhaps through connecting at a community level and developing local programs with local families and communities, paying fairer salaries and distributing profits more equally through a co-operative approach and by creating initiatives which enable cultural exchange and learning while preserving skills and knowledge central/intrinsic to (the highly diverse) Indonesian unique/hand-made lifestyles and heritage – maintaining and developing cultural traditions which have sustained people’s lives and livelihoods.
There is a swathe of cultural knowledge and skills/practices that are at risk of being lost with the current younger generation of Indonesians – who are aiming towards higher salaries of the hospitality industry and IT, while the skills and knowledge which come at a premium and are now being “sold” back to us (in western culture) at boutique prices. (You can get paid more working in Wendy’s in Taiwan than maintaining the generational skills of woodwork, stone-carving, making traditional foods and medicine or producing hand-woven textiles/homewares… which brings me back to my original premise.
Any thoughts? Comment below.