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Understanding 'money'?

 
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One of the things that helped us to develop and remain on our homestead was to truly understand 'money'. Sadly what 99% of people refer to as money is actually currency - really a DEBT instrument.
Since this is the Monies forum, I was wondering if this topic has ever been discussed before? Or even if there is any interest in truly knowing and understanding what money is - beyond MOE (media of exchange).
 
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I accept this view of money. I sure hope we don't go down the road of being angry with the US Federal Reserve followed by a trip to the cider press.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Money
 
Jain Anderson
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Got ya Dale. My reason for wondering about what is often referred to as 'the root of all evils' is a genuine concern about money as a TOOL which homesteaders will be using - hopefully for their advantage and enrichment. Can't say I'm a fan of the Fed, but when I acknowledge that that private bank has been responsible for devaluing everyday 'money' - its awfully hard to appreciate the theft that has been occurring since 1913. I did see a post about bit coin and while that is a valid alternative for some, its still fiat based. Rather too ether based for my taste, but hey, those who use it -great for them.
 
Dale Hodgins
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It's quite popular to pick on those who have some money, especially if they have a lot of money. those are people who could be useful.

I've been having a lot of problems with those who don't have any money. Asking me for money, stealing stuff and not being able to come to work because they drank their last few dollars and can't afford the bus. In order to be a functioning member of our society, most of us need to have some readily available money.

Most of my wealth is tied up in hard assets, land vehicles and the machines. But I have a few thousand dollars just sitting there, so that if the ultimate deal comes up I can jump on it. Every time my young brother sees some opportunity, he calls me about it, because he has spent all of his money. And he gets quite agitated if I don't fall completely in love with his latest idea. It's not about income, it's not about anyone else other than himself. He gets money and it flows through his fingers, so that it isn't much of a tool in his hands. Ben Franklin said something about that.

I have a Visa card, but it's tied to my bank account. It's not a credit card. I can only withdraw money that I have already earned.
 
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Money is stored energy.
 
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When I did my classes on Sheep farming, that I one thing I stressed the most: You cannot buy your way into a successful farm. The money is just not there.

What I meant was, by doing as much as you can for yourself, you save a lot of money. For instance, can you imagine how much money it would cost to buy all the implements I need to farm? Many I have built myself, and many more I keep rebuilding so that I do not have to buy new ones to replace them. It takes thinking outside the box, but it can be done, or at least you can save a lo of money by designing the equipment yourself and having it welded up for you.

But true wealth is your ability to earn money, how much you keep is the real determining factor.

It is a very cynical outlook on money, but I do not care about how much money others have, I only care about my little pile of cash, and know that everyone is trying to take some of it. It does not matter if it is the man in the coffee truck that has an appealing cup of coffee and breakfast sandwich that is trying to separate me from $3 and my little pile of cash, or the power company and their electric bill they send every month, or food at a grocery store; EVERYONE wants a little bit of my pile of cash, and it is my job to protect it at all costs.

Call it what you will, but I call it being a minimalist.

But here is the thing. When you try to earn more money, it takes money. For instance, if you have a regular job, and you work overtime to make more money, it costs gas money to drive in on Saturday to work that extra day. So that extra money is not 100% more. BUT when you do not spend a dollar, that is 100% because you get to save all of that dollar and use it for something else. That is why it is ALWAYS better to not spend, then try and make more money, because there are always hidden, and foreseen costs to it.
 
Dale Hodgins
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When I was in the Philippines, several people that I was vaguely acquainted with, presented me with their business ideas and then the word partner came up. I told them that I am almost never looking for a partner but that I would consider it, if that partner has much more money than me. End of story.

Other times, I told them that I already have a partner, my fiance. Until she is fully employed and all of her brothers and sisters and anyone else that she already can vouch for, are fully employed, I can't get involved with strangers. But if one of those strangers has 10 million dollars and they'd like to go half and half on a plantation, I'm in.

When it's a family-run business, nepotism is very important, to keep the money within the family.
 
Jain Anderson
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Rolf Olsson wrote:Money is stored energy.



Rolf, for me money is an asset one holds and can make use of. Certainly it originates from the energy a person has done to produce someTHING, even an intangible service. But the asset held is usually not the produced product. Its the ability for that held item to be of value for exchange that makes it 'money'.
 
Jain Anderson
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Dale Hodgins wrote:It's quite popular to pick on those who have some money, especially if they have a lot of money. those are people who could be useful.

I've been having a lot of problems with those who don't have any money. Asking me for money, stealing stuff and not being able to come to work because they drank their last few dollars and can't afford the bus. In order to be a functioning member of our society, most of us need to have some readily available money.

Most of my wealth is tied up in hard assets, land vehicles and the machines. But I have a few thousand dollars just sitting there, so that if the ultimate deal comes up I can jump on it. Every time my young brother sees some opportunity, he calls me about it, because he has spent all of his money. And he gets quite agitated if I don't fall completely in love with his latest idea. It's not about income, it's not about anyone else other than himself. He gets money and it flows through his fingers, so that it isn't much of a tool in his hands. Ben Franklin said something about that.



Dale I can very much understand and also have family that haven't displayed ANY respect for money. They seem to think and expect that the world will provide them what they need (lots!) whenever (alllll the time!) they want 'it'. That doesn't invalidate the fact that they abuse and disrespect the 'tool'. They are like a person in a desert who drinks all the water they have and expects to have more when they get thirsty. Our question to them if they approach us (seldom) is -

"Can & will you produce(grow) more than you consume?"

And if they say yes, then they are kindly directed to do so, and don't need our assistance. Its like what kindergarten teachers share - gotta be smarter than a little kid! Its a huge shame that The Little Red Hen story isn't shared with children any more.
 
Dale Hodgins
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I like Rolph's view of stored energy. And that energy can get your products or services. I am currently earning money in Canada that will be spent in the Philippines. Just about everything that I want is much cheaper there. The money I earn in one day here, can pay labor there for 30 days. So I'm multiplying my efforts.

I'm going to multiply my efforts further by letting the Sun and Rain do it for me. If I were to go and plant a couple acres of beans, I would have to figure out what to do with beans in about 45 days. So instead, all of my first efforts will go toward the planting of trees. This buys me one year on moringa trees, before they are mature enough to start harvesting every 3 weeks. I won't have to thin out my timber trees for 2 years and the bulk of the crop won't be ready to harvest for five years. Cinnamon and other spices will take at least two years to come on and many of my fruit trees need three years or more before you can really start harvesting much.

During this time I will spend money putting things in and I will spend a very small amount for a caretaker. A relative who knows that he would be crucified if the trees died. His only job will be to water and mulch with anything that grows within three feet of a tree. After 6 months, almost nothing ever needs to be watered. You plant and wait.

A person with no money on hand would be put in a position where they have to plant short cycle crops if they want to make a living from the land. Those beans that I mentioned earlier sell for about 25 cents a pound. And a whole lot of that is eaten up in cultivation, harvest and retailing. There's a 3-day shelf life once picked, unless you invest in refrigeration. Most of my tree crops will be spices or dried leaf. None of these things have to be harvested immediately or marketed immediately. The lumber can be harvested in as little as four years, for poles but it can also be left stand for 8 years.

I consider valuable Dry Goods like Moringa, cloves, cinnamon and black pepper to be a form of currency. The high value per pound makes them a good trade item. And I consider standing timber to be money in the bank.

Typhoons can wipe out the timber trees, since they are a tall skinny variety. So that chance is always being taken. But they are worth almost as much as firewood and charcoal, as they would be if allowed to mature into small saw logs. If a typhoon wipes me out, all damaged trees will be coppiced and we start again, but the crop is not lost. It would just mean that I get to turn some of it into cash earlier than I had planned. The risk of typhoon and the fact that I'm not getting any younger, is the reason that I'm not planting Brazil nuts or mahogany or other things that are going to take many decades to give a return. Short rotation trees that produce 500 lb of nitrogen per acre per year, make sense for me financially and make sense for the rest of the farm. Having adequate financial assets gives a person choices.

The majority of farmers that I met during my last trip, haven't saved enough money so that they could pursue crops that don't pay for a few years. So most of them are stuck in a cycle of growing high labor, short cycle crops.

My brother in Mexico has turned Open Fields into tree crops and he's able to earn more than his neighbors with less effort. He has shown them what he's up to, but the common response is, I can't plant that because it doesn't give anything for 3 years. He has perennial squashes that climb the trees.

Reliance on credit for frivolous purchases and consumption of alcohol are the main reason that my brother's neighbors and the farmers I met in the Philippines do not invest more long-term.

Save your money and don't drink it. I understood this concept when I was six years old.
 
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Have you read The Story of Gert?

Gert's example shows us it's possible to separate money and currency from politics.    
 
Jain Anderson
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r ranson wrote:Have you read The Story of Gert?

Gert's example shows us it's possible to separate money and currency from politics.    



I did read this and while its a fine example of how one can make their life a supportive happy one. What I admire most about Gert is that she DID this by and for her own reasons and betterment. It does seem a sad fact that Gert would be discounted for her efforts and lack of 'teaching'. Where is the initiative of those who would like to be so directed to approach Gert? Or even to use her example as encouragement for their own efforts? This road runs both directions ;-)
 
Travis Johnson
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r ranson wrote:Have you read The Story of Gert?

Gert's example shows us it's possible to separate money and currency from politics.    



Absolutely!!
 
r ranson
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I wonder if Gert (and the Gerts I know in real life) even realise that they have something to share and that the world would value what they have to say.  

Example:  A few months ago, a friend asked me to write an ebook about how I clean my house and sell it online.  I thought this was a silly idea.  Surely everyone knows how not to use toxic gick to clean their homes.  So I asked around, and I couldn't find anyone who knew.  Well, the library must know this.  They have over 100 books on the topic.  I set out to prove my friend wrong - this information must be readily available!  Humans have been doing this stuff for ever.  What I do is no different.  So I borrowed every single book on the topic and discovered that only three of them were any good.  Two were expensive which made them inaccessible to anyone not near a library.  The third, moderately priced - high value for the price, but still... not accessible to everyone.  

So I ended up writing a booklet on my cleaning experiences with recipes.  But I wouldn't have thought it necessary if not for my friend pushing me to do it.

I think Gert is like that.  She doesn't give back to society because she feels that they already know everything she does.  It must be common knowledge.  She sees what she is doing as nothing special.  

I think Gert needs a friend to show her that what she is doing is special.  I suspect she would find this shocking and of course, she would share what she knows.  
 
Travis Johnson
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I do not think so.

I think the people that Gert talks to, need to realize it is something THEY can do.

I wonder how many on here, feeling self-defeated because they have debt, think, "that sounds great, but these people that got out of debt were some amazing people."

Nothing can be further from the truth.

I am not debt-free completely, but I am within a few months of it, and I can tell you that I somehow did not scale a single rope slung between two cliffs thousands of feet up, and by amazing feat and bravery of heights make it almost to the other side, and to being debt free. That is NOT how it happened. I have become a GERT by putting off gratification now, for a much longer lasting reward later, and doing mundane tasks like keeping a budget, using cash primarily, and selling stuff I really liked.

My greatest challenge I feel, is to CONVINCE people, it is the little stuff that can get them out of debt so that they can live.

Live? What do I mean by live? Paying a car payment sucks. Worrying about paying the light bill is worse, but when parents are so strapped that they cannot put gas in their car to take their child for Lukemia Treatments and you slip them a $50 and just say, "Hey, I heard things have been tight", or give a hundred dollar bill to a woman who is going through a divorce, without saying a word...well, let;s just say, you understand that having a budget is not mundane, but freeing. That is what I mean by living.
 
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I think of wealth as resources, goods, and skills/services which are inherently valuable. Pears are wealth. A shovel is wealth. Blacksmithing or sewing skills are wealth. The knowledge to create effective antibiotics is wealth. Healthy soil is wealth.

Money is a means of denominating wealth and facilitating its exchange. Sometimes the supply of money and the supply of wealth shrink and grow in step. Sometimes real wealth grows rapidly, but no new money is created, and the system stalls until the money supply is increased. Sometimes money is created, but no growth in real wealth accompanies it, and the system is out of balance. Eventually there is a collapse in the money supply to bring it back in line with real wealth.

Wealth can be created, and existing wealth can be stored. When one wants to exchange this wealth for money or vice versa, certain complications ensue. Maybe the money cannot be exchanged for as much wealth as you thought it could—maybe inflation or a currency collapse has devalued the money. Or maybe the wealth you possess—a share in a company or a bar of gold or a fancy yacht—turns out to have less inherent value than you thought it did, because what people really need are potatoes and chickens, not stocks or gold. Or maybe it cannot be exchanged for as much money as you expected, due to the vagaries of the market, just when you have a bill that desperately needs to be paid or an opportunity to invest in something that creates wealth instead of just storing it.

The ubiquitous conflation of money and wealth is misleading. If you know which is which, and which one you need, and whether you are trying to store it or create it, and you pay attention to the possibility of losing or gaining either as you exchange one for the other, you will be ahead of the game.
 
Dale Hodgins
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I think anybody who is making vast improvements to their land is both storing and creating wealth. As soil nutrients and depth increase and the girth of trees gets larger, your wealth rises. And even if the economy falters, if you continue to make the improvements as though nothing has changed, when it comes around again it turns out you were wealthier than the market said you were.

I have known a few people who moved into a house, assuming that continually rising property values would eventually give them enough money that they would not have to work. But the market goes up and down. Some live in that house without maintaining it or having a fund for maintaining it. It's all based on the hope that they can somehow steal from the Next Generation, by selling a greatly depreciated asset for more than its inherent value. This strategy has worked for people in the past, but I don't think it's the best long-term strategy.
 
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I have a friend who due to the combination of a head injury and fibromyalgia, ended up on gov't support and in public housing. She found that living in public housing was too much despair and hopelessness all around, and got enough funding to move to a basement apartment and found access to some land where she could have chickens and grow fresh veggies (in return for a share of both for the land owner). She did not make any money, but her health improved slowly, as did her mental status. She volunteered to talk about backyard chickens every year at the local agricultural fair, trained a few chickens to be tolerant of being handled by the public, won ribbons for some of her chickens at said fair,volunteered when she could, and was an excellent local resource for all sorts of chicken related problems.

Recently, the landowner decided he needed to sell the land, but my friend was turning 65 and it was very sloped land that was becoming too dangerous for her. She found an elderly widower who wanted a house-mate to share expenses and who loves to garden. She was able to keep 6 of her banties (for a *really* shitty reason - her new landlord agrees with me that chicken shit is a very useful garden amendment). Despite her health issues, she's an active, contributing member of society. She has value and "wealth", even if she doesn't have money.
 
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Jain Anderson wrote:My reason for wondering about what is often referred to as 'the root of all evils' is a genuine concern about money as a TOOL which homesteaders will be using - hopefully for their advantage and enrichment.



The LOVE of money is the root of all evil.  Not money itself.

Money is a tool, and like any tool, it can be abused in hands of an abusive person.  Or it can be invested, stewarded and shared (like any other tool).  When I obsess about gaining more and more money, but think little of what I will do to better my condition and the condition of others, I'm on dangerous ground.  

 
Dale Hodgins
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Youth and good  health are the two most valuable things that are often squandered. No amount of money can buy back your youth, and many don't concern themselves much with preserving or restoring their health. Both are a form of wealth that's not easy to assign a value to.

I have known a few people who were quite aware that they were destroying their health in the pursuit of money but continued down that path regardless. And I know a few who have nothing to show for their time on Earth other than a few wrinkles. Squandered youth.

I look at youth as gas in the tank. Everyone's tank will eventually run dry. Those who are young have more time to get things right. Part of getting it right is looking after their health and part of it is taking steps toward a positive financial future.
 
Travis Johnson
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I think people are getting Wealth and Value mixed up.

I can have the best crop of hay, it sitting in nice neat hay bales, all ready to sell, and yet if no one buys them, they are worthless in a few months. A conversion has to take place, and for that to happen Economics 101 has to come into play.

It has to be something that someone else wants.
It has to be able to be sold or traded.
And it has to have some fiscal value associated with it.

A person's greatest wealth is their ability to make an income. A house, property, cars, etc, all fall very short because for most people, if they lost their job, or their health to maintain their job, in a few months they would lose all those things. I mean consider a person's most likely biggest asset, their home. Yeah it might be worth $200,000, but that is only 4 years worth of income if the person makes a modest $50,000 a year. The ability to make money is where the true wealth lies.

So having established that, a person MUST come to the conclusion that since they can only work so many hours, and accumulate so much money, they must reduce their costs to glean the most of the wealth (income) they are getting.

You do that by getting out of debt. There is only one way to do that, PAY IT OFF. You cannot borrow money because you cannot get out of a hole by digging deeper down. So to pay off what is owed...you sell EVERYTHING you can, even the stuff you like, and get serious about paying things off. EVERYDAY, people are getting out of debt if they are paying their monthly bills with some going to principal, but by selling all the stuff that we have accumulated, we can accelerate getting out of debt. So the real trick is, NOT GETTING MORE DEBT once it is paid off.


 
Travis Johnson
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The best way to negotiate a deal is to have something the other guy does not have, and desperately wants.

That is cash.

Everyone is in debt, and no one has cash, and by using it, you can really use it to your advantage.

You want to buy something in cash, use small denominations and a backpack, and let them see it. There is no dishonesty there, but you can really negotiate a deal because they want that backpack full of cash far more then they want that car you are buying, or couch...or house! Oh do not get me wrong, be ready to walk in case they do not come down to your level...but leave your business card with them when you leave because I have had people mull things over, and agree to MY price a few days later.

I saved $700 just by having cash in my pocket when we saw this stove for sale.


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It's easy to call money evil but when you find out your 5 year old has a cataract that requires surgery and the optometrist is anxiously telling you that the laser isn't covered by insurance and that not using it may result in serious eye tearing, well being able to say USE THAT LASER and grant your child sight, that's money's power.
 
Dale Hodgins
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Poverty is evil and it makes people do evil things. Money is great. Really really great.

Travis has mentioned debt a few times. Obviously, we need to avoid financing frivolous things.

For at least a couple generations, many farmers in North America have used financing and debt and become very accustomed to burrowing and owing money. I remember back in the 70s, my dad pointed out that our neighbor had made machinery purchases that couldn't possibly be warranted based on the amount of land and value of crops he was producing. Many people went broke and much farm consolidation happened as bankruptcies were snapped up by more profitable operations. It was on the news all the time. There were benefit concerts. And still the farmers showed up at the equipment dealer, looking to mortgage their lives in order to have the latest machine.

My grandmother leased her place out to Gerald Rhodie, an old guy who continued to use his mid-sixties tractor long after many of his neighbors bought behemoths. He was able to get out on the land earlier in the spring and he didn't break his tile or experience soil compaction like many of the others did. He did all of his own maintenance. And Gerald was not mired in debt. His home farm was profitable, and he did quite well taking hay off of my grandmother's place and other land that he rented. There was a big push to get bigger and bigger, and to do this money was borrowed. Many went bankrupt and it was typical to blame the equipment dealers. My twenty-year-old Toyota gets me everywhere I want to go. If someone were foolish enough to lend me money to buy a Lamborghini, I could drive that to work. And if I couldn't pay the loan, that would be my fault entirely.
 
Jain Anderson
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Travis Johnson wrote:I think people are getting Wealth and Value mixed up.

I can have the best crop of hay, it sitting in nice neat hay bales, all ready to sell, and yet if no one buys them, they are worthless in a few months. A conversion has to take place, and for that to happen Economics 101 has to come into play.

It has to be something that someone else wants.
It has to be able to be sold or traded.
And it has to have some fiscal value associated with it.

A person's greatest wealth is their ability to make an income.



Travis, I politely disagree - I believe that a person's greatest wealth is their own ability to 'scenario-ize'. Basically to think, imagine a future situation then plan and implement that in a realistic manner. Adding the ability to roll with the punches as plans meet up with reality along the way.

It is true that in today's world what I call 'job mentality' is most prevalent.Earning an 'income' is the order of the day. However a job isn't necessarily (productive) WORK. And its making most use of one's energy and efforts that result in maximum pay back for that person. Sadly most of the work of today is INdirect effort and as physics reminds us - in every exchange there is a loss. Maximizing return while minimizing necessary effort tends to happen most for those who think by and for themselves. Directing one's best use of own energy and efforts is what results in potential for 'wealth' (which is surplus production really ;-). How one stores and holds onto that 'surplus' needs to be carefully thought our and implemented too.
Just my humble opinion.  
 
Jain Anderson
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Travis Johnson wrote:The best way to negotiate a deal is to have something the other guy does not have, and desperately wants.

That is cash.

Everyone is in debt, and no one has cash, and by using it, you can really use it to your advantage.

You want to buy something in cash, use small denominations and a backpack, and let them see it. There is no dishonesty there, but you can really negotiate a deal because they want that backpack full of cash far more then they want that car you are buying, or couch...or house! Oh do not get me wrong, be ready to walk in case they do not come down to your level...but leave your business card with them when you leave because I have had people mull things over, and agree to MY price a few days later.

I saved $700 just by having cash in my pocket when we saw this stove for sale.



Like you Travis, making use of cash can be a great leverage for obtaining what you need. Our house is a virtual gallery of treasures we bought for very little cash. But there is another side of the cash story that needs to be understood too.

Using your stove as an example, we had the chance to buy a new Waterford stove for $700. We had the funds and knew we would be needing a wood stove in our future home, but it just seemed too iffy for us at the time (late 1970s). When we did build our new house, a friend gave us an old 1930s Tappen gas/trash burner stove. It took some reworking, but that little trash burner cooked and warmed our temporary place wonderfully. In the meanwhile the Waterford rose in price to at least double. And the $700 we didn't spend came to buy so much more than a single - abeilt very nice - item. The hidden part of this story is the fact that the purchase ability of $700 DROPPED due to inflation (beyond our control). But understanding and knowing how to work around the decreasing 'value' of our 'cash' helped us to make best use of the cash we did hold including purchasing other solid value items that were actually more inflation resistant.
 
Jain Anderson
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Dale Hodgins wrote:Poverty is evil and it makes people do evil things. Money is great. Really really great.



While poverty generally refers to lack of necessary resources, there always remains one resource that any person should never lose - the ability of their own thinking and direction of efforts. Money is simply A resource. It can be treated with respect and reverence OR it can be taken lightly or wrongly. Money is simply surplus resulting from applied energy and efforts that is held in an exchangeable form. The more one understands and chooses well how to meet their living necessities AND produce extra if/when they can, the greater their reserves of resources will be. And those resources are not a pile of gold coins to Scrooge McDuck in, but to have in times when basic needs can't be met at that time.
 
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Jain Anderson wrote:often referred to as 'the root of all evils'



Actually, the saying is that the love of money is the root of all evil.  That distinction makes it a little easier to talk about using money as a tool as we are in this thread.  Having an understanding of what money is, how to get it, and what it can do for you is important in learning how to use it as a tool- but just like a hammer or lawn mower, you put it away at the end of the day and don't need to go to bed with it or think about it the moment you wake up.  

Also important is being able to part with money when a good opportunity comes.  I've known people who missed great opportunities because they were too attached to their cash to actually invest it in something when the moment was right.
 
Travis Johnson
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I think like nothing else, with money, it is very easy to slip into psychobabble.

Money is pretty simple, and most kids even understand the general principal; earn and then spend what you earn. The problem is, as others have tried to take more and more of our little piles of cash, they have devised complex ways to get us to hand over our hard earned money to them rather unaware.

Leases on cars immediately comes to mind. They tell you what you will pay for the car at the time you get it, and then they tell you what they will pay for it as a trade in when you are done, and then to triple-screw you, they tell you what you will pay if you happen to go over on mileage...all because the cost of cars has outdone the average workers income level.  All I can say is...RUN from a lease. But that is just one example though, and there are many more.

Dave Ramsey would drive up from Nashville and kick my bottom if he knew I had three houses, and am NOT selling one even though I would be 100% out of debt instantly, and have $50,000 grand in my savings account to boot if I did.

Why?

Because as a Day Care, that house makes me $6000 a month, so in less than 3 years, I will make more money using the house as a Day Care Center then I would if I sold it outright. Because neither my wife or I commute, not only do we now only use one car, we no longer drive many miles in a year. It is the best use of our assets.

Sometimes things are just not for sale. In America we are slow to learn that. But it also shows that it is pretty hard to argue against the ability to earn money, fails to result in wealth.





 
pollinator
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Thanks everyone, so far, very enlightening entries from all of you.

I've learned a new word today, that is "nepotism" and also the importance of the children's story "Little Red Hen". I will be reading this to my kids tonight again.

My summary from the above entries are (sorry for not acknowledging the people in quotes, I took notes as I've read from top to bottom):

Money is a tool, learn how to use it wisely.

Money is not evil but the LOVE of money is the root of all evil.

Having hard assets is good, but doesn’t mean that you are wealthy.

The speed of liquidation of hard assets creates money (yield).

Ability to generate income is THE REAL WEALTH. Also learning DIY things saves you money and may even generate income if you turn it into a service you provide to others.

Maintainable assets chips away your income.

Annual crops require high labor but cash flow is quicker. Perennial crops require less labor but cash flow is coming late. A balanced system in a time-stacked fashion with annual, perennial crops is better. Also with increasing age and reducing muscle power, we need to convert the land into more perennial crops so that effort required is minimized but yield continues albeit changed (evolved).

You can only work so many hours and accumulate so much money, so you have to REDUCE the cost of living and INVEST wisely

Investment MUST have greater return than the cost of it.

But first, pay-off your debts but do not borrow money to pay off the debt because you cannot get out of a hole by digging deeper. You sell everything you can, even the stuff you like and get serious about paying it off.

Not getting more debt once it is paid off is also another important aspect.

Do not borrow money to scale up. If your operation is not generating the required income to scale up, think your operation again.

Everyone wants a bit of your hard earned cash. They pump you with advertisement, TV, media, social media etc. even when you are walking on the street, you are subject to some advertisement and sooner or later you will be brain washed to think that you need that item and must have it.

Always negotiate the price and do not budge when buying things.

In every exchange there is a loss (laws of physics). You produce wealth (surplus production) but how to store that wealth is equally important too. It should not lose its value and preferably gain value as it ages.

Money is just another energy that enters into your system like rain, wind etc. How you cycle this money to gain the most yield out of it shows the efficiency and mastery of your design. As a permaculturist, you try to catch and store the energy and we must do the same with money. Catch and store and use it when the time is right.
 
elle sagenev
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Jain Anderson wrote:

Dale Hodgins wrote:Poverty is evil and it makes people do evil things. Money is great. Really really great.



While poverty generally refers to lack of necessary resources, there always remains one resource that any person should never lose - the ability of their own thinking and direction of efforts. Money is simply A resource. It can be treated with respect and reverence OR it can be taken lightly or wrongly. Money is simply surplus resulting from applied energy and efforts that is held in an exchangeable form. The more one understands and chooses well how to meet their living necessities AND produce extra if/when they can, the greater their reserves of resources will be. And those resources are not a pile of gold coins to Scrooge McDuck in, but to have in times when basic needs can't be met at that time.



I find a lot of the people living in financial poverty around me really aren't directing a lot of thought into thought. They're far too busy trying to survive by any means necessary.
 
Jain Anderson
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elle sagenev wrote:[ I find a lot of the people living in financial poverty around me really aren't directing a lot of thought into thought. They're far too busy trying to survive by any means necessary.



There's a saying that goes like this - in order to have a change you must make a change. I can't help but wonder if the 'financial poverty' they find themselves in is debt based or simply reflects choices that didn't work well for them? Certainly there circumstances of illness, physical incapability and plain rotten luck! But if these people are so 'poor' that they are receiving food stamps, how do they use those? This is just an example of the power of choice. When I see a 'homeless' beggar holding up a cardboard smoking a cigarette with a fast food drink next to them, I have to wonder why the $s that purchased those CHOSEN items didn't go towards other more life supportive things? I have been able to keep our living expenses quite low because I cook from scratch, use rags instead of paper towels, invested in solar electric equipment when we could afford that, sew my own clothes, repair whatever breaks, keep and maintain our vehicles for YEARS and buy at thrift stores too.

I'm not unsympathetic, however I have learned that there are 2 types of 'help' - assist (where everyone participates) and do-for which is basically charity. Again, there are a small percentage of those who really do need and appreciate help. But I have also found that a great% of those who live 'poor' do NOT help themselves where they COULD. Mankind does itself no favor by 'supporting' (aka GIVE) to those who won't help themselves. In too many case being 'poor' is a state of mind and embedded practice. WAY too much is focused on and based on monetary values instead of self reliant made contentment. (rant over)
 
Jain Anderson
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Here's another thing to consider about 'cash' – its fiat, not solid (physical) 'thing' based.

What is the difference between a $1 and $100 bill?!? Only how the ink is displayed and printed. How about having a 1 ounce piece of (same) metal stamped with a 1, 5, 10, 20, 50 or 100 onto each? If one was to exchange a $100 bill for such tokens (aka coins), would the choice be the ONE stamped with a '100' on it OR would rather get 100 of those stamped with a '1'?!?  (even little children know the difference between a hand full of brown M&Ms vs. a single brightly colored M&M)

And say a person did chose the piece of metal stamped with a '100' on it – hey its easier to carry right? Would they be willing to use that to exchange it to buy something that is priced at a '1', accepting EIGHT (one '50' + two '20's + one '5' + four '1's) pieces of metal in return? Hmm, one or eight pieces of metal instead of 99? Just for convenience?

Fiat is 'by decree', basically a promise/IOU. Worse yet IMHO, the dollar is a DEBT instrument, expecting 'payment' for being used. History shows that there hasn't been a 'script' (paper currency) system that lasts. There simply isn't any REAListic base to contain something that is easily made. (what man can make can be faked, duplicated, manipulated, etc.) But there remains a need to have MOE (medium of exchange). What MOE IS is important in its ability to be physical enough to maintain a reality base for keeping exchanges genuine and honest.

Fiat currency ends up a musical chairs, and ultimately a greater fool, game. If I tried to pay for my groceries with colored pieces of paper from a Monopoly game, I would be laughed at if not immediately shown the door. Yet using the more elaborately printed currency will let me take that food home. Rather boggles the mind doesn't it?

Moving into use is electronic 'money' (electrical accounting really). The convenience is even less burdensome than carrying a wallet with cash and change. Its also easier to 'exchange' – world wide! - by simply providing account numbers. Unfortunately, that account is subject to the whims of electricity as well as surveillance by 'authority' who oversees, approves and can REMOVE parts or all of the account without the account holder's permission.  

So is the 'burden' of having and HOLDING ones assets personally greater than the 'convenience' of electronic accounting? Only each person, or participants in an exchange, can decide.
 
Conner Murphy
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Gurkan Yeniceri wrote:Money is just another energy that enters into your system like rain, wind etc. How you cycle this money to gain the most yield out of it shows the efficiency and mastery of your design. As a permaculturist, you try to catch and store the energy and we must do the same with money. Catch and store and use it when the time is right.



THIS^^^^

Such a good analogy.  Money is a yield just like any other crop.  Putting it to a use which has the most potential is the challenge.  To push the analogy, I'll compare it to a seed crop.. if harvested and stored correctly, a few plants (dollars) can produce the seed for thousands more.  
 
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