Pot-Head Question of the Day
January 20, 2009
Why is money worth anything? Answer: Because everyone has agreed that it is. You could view that as a banality. Or you could think about that question for years, and still have it blow your mind every time.
Speaking of mind blowing, check out this article on prison currency. A can of fish that no one wants to eat is used to exchange for things that people do want to eat. We might think that is weird.
Yet what can you do with a U.S. Dollar - other than spend it? Like the can of fish that no one wants to eat, people want paper that you can't do anything with other than spend. So long as everyone wants the fish, and everyone wants the dollars, societies function.
When people talk of strong or weak economies, remember that there is no economy without a currency. And just look at currencies: Dollars are, in a Platonic sense, worthless. Currency is like gravity. It is a weak force that holds societies together. When you examine it at a subatomic level, you realize there's nothing there. How bizarre.