“Zero Money”: First Principles Thinking About Monetary Value
Change the Money, Change the World (1)
Preamble (Paragraphs 1 to 5 of 18) Monetary value true by nature
First principles thinking is an inquiry for determining what is irreducibly true by nature. Embedded in the idea of money is its substantiation in objective reality. The idea itself is a subjective concept of money that anticipates its objective substantiation. Utilization of money may be truthful or may become false as a substantiation of a specific idea of monetary value irreducibly true by nature. Metaphorically I call that specific idea “Zero Money” because, logically, what could be more scarce than zero. The phenomenological intuition of scarcity in the subjective idea of money is the first principle needing our allegiance for a true substantiation of the epiphenomenon of money value in objective reality.
Metaphorically speaking, “Zero Money” reflects a value of zero. In objective substantiation are characteristics of money utilization which are likewise metaphorically integers other than zero. Positive substantiation represents sound money, metaphorically reflected as positive numbers. Negative substantiation is unsound money, represented by negative numbers. To complete the metaphor: “Zero Money”, has a truth relationship with true substantiation, with positive integers. It has a false relationship with false numbers, with false substantiation. Characteristics of money utilization will therefore be evaluated as to some degree sound or unsound as determined by that use being in allegiance or not to the first principle of scarcity. This metaphor will be helpful in illustrating how and why money can be degraded by poor governance. First, I should clarify what I am referring to as “characteristics of money”:
I am referring to money being a unit of account, a store of value, and a medium of exchange. These utilizations are universally recognized functions of money. Other characteristics of money include basic properties of the monetary medium: durability, portability, and fungibility (being universally recognizable as money). The three functions of money are, as a set, of a higher order of conceptual registers, than the set of basic properties. Also, the three functions of money, as a set, comprise a hierarchy of conceptual registers in their set. When I refer to the “medium” used for a unit of account, store of value or in the market of exchange, or possessing basic properties, I mean what has been chosen for monetary functions, for example the USD. Its important to remember that functions and properties are of the domain of objective substantiation. They are the manifestation of a sovereign subjective domain where resides the intuition of scarcity, the first principle for monetary value, separate from the objective domain of the manifested value in the monetary medium. The phenomenal intuition of scarcity is reflected in the subjective consciousness of individuals, and in the perceptual epiphenomenon of monetary value in objective reality.
A visualization is helpful here: Imagine an ascending spiral of uniform diameter, as if on the surface of a cylinder. A vertical line intersects the spiral at points from top to bottom — these are registers of a unified concept of money. At the top of the vertical line, at the beginning of the spiral, is the register of subjective reality, the idea of money, not the medium of money. All the points of intersection of the line below on the spiral are substantiated registers of money utilization in objective reality, in the perceived world of people utilizing a medium of money. That perceived world is contained by but separate from the purely mental aspect of experience. At the lowest point on the vertical line, at the end of the spiral of uniform width, are the basic properties of the monetary medium. Above that register is the register of money as a medium of exchange, functioning in the domain of market forces. Separate at a higher register from the domain of the medium of exchange is the medium kept as a store of value. What is stored is some medium, but at the top and highest objective register is the function of accounting the value of the medium. It is as a unit of account that a medium of money is evaluated as to some degree sound or unsound. The degree of soundness is determined by that use being in allegiance, or not, to the first principle of scarcity.
In the mathematics of the metaphor, zero constitutes an infinity of potential manifestation within an absolute subjective domain. It’s money being “Zero Money”. Zero is situated between manifested positive and negative integers representing infinite possibilities of the ways money is utilized in the world of substantiation, consistent with empirical evidence. Zero as infinity manifested in the objective world equals 1, a positive empirical unity. This gives reason to the metaphorical assumption asserted: there is a true relationship of money to positive integers denoting sound money. The first principle in evaluation of the value of money is its being scaled between sound and unsound money. Outcomes in the use of money are like numbers other than zero, they are some magnitude less or more positive or negative. “Zero Money” has a truth relationship with positive outcomes, money doing what we think money should do, namely maintaining value. Sound money remains relatively true to the concept of “Zero Money”. Money can to some degree become false — becoming unsound, a degradation of money, even to the extent of being “Negative Money” no longer having value. This extreme situation would be a complete decoupling of the medium from the first principle of scarcity.