It is not just who has money but it is also about how we are using money. We have savings, we have investments and shares. But possession of money is still a very private matter. The more you possess the more private it gets. One will really be uncomfortable if you go up and ask “How much do you earn?” The public aspect of possession of money may lead to fear, competition and all sorts of discrimination among people- the world witnesses such events all the time and hence a secrecy about it. But does this mean that those who have money are the ones who are powerful and influential?
Significance of money today
The significance of money in current times is multifaceted. It is at times extremely difficult to talk on all the facets but if we go down to the basics, one of them is actually the physicality of money. How does money look like and feel like when we hold them in our hands. The feeling is not mutual over generations because gradually over the years, the physicality of money has gone under a lot of changes. In the earlier times gold and silver coins and even sea shells were used as money. From the sense of trading, playing cards were symbolic of money and in prison cigarettes are big time currencies.
The changing face of money
But gradually the physicality of money has always been complimentary to the need of the times. There were 10 dollar currencies to even a thousand dollar note and all were the need of the hour. The reason the penny has a slow demise is because of its redundancy in the current trading and money system. Even the currency notes have become more durable, they don’t tear off very easily thus adding to their value. Despite all this the physicality of money is fast shrinking. Today in Canada for instance it is only around four percent of the population who use physical money for transaction. We mostly pay through debit or credit cards, through mobile applications, Net banking and all these have reduced the physical aspect of money- it is now the generation of electronic money.
Manufacturer of currency (money): The politics of power
Who are the manufacturers of currencies in today’s world? It is the central banks through the mints. And obviously these banks are perceived as the most powerful institutions. The representatives of these institutions (for instance the governors) are indeed powerful people and unlike earlier times, today these people do mix well with the celebrities gaining for them a similar status as well.
The most important part is the fact that they are policy changers and handlers in everything that has to do with money (obviously with approval of the finance minister) but they are not publicly elected but are employed by the government and here comes the question of power and the centralization of it.
A kind of electronic media
BIT coins, introduced in 2008 which is a kind of electronic media, was first produced independent of the government intervention – a simple peer to peer monetary transaction without any intermediary money handler. This questioned the centralization of power by the central banks and in due course, the government and hence there is now a lot of financial compliances that it has to go through.
Hence to comprehend the dynamics of power through money, BITcoins will not seize to exist because of the heavy compliances but it is the central banks that will eventually be more powerful and more discussions will be raised on their inherent and increasing possession of power.
The future of money
In the coming years, the central bank may have more power and its possession will be criticized but they won’t be the sole influencers, neither would be the richest individuals in the world. Influence comes from understanding public good and welfare and hence though Nelson Mandela wasn’t rich the world will always be indebted to him for his influence to change lives. Hence one needs to understand the fact that nurturing relationships and emotions over money is crucial for existence because creativity flows through these lines.
It does not mean that there won’t be greed, but the divisions between close people, to put forward feelings and creativity to influence, is what should be dominating money because the constant struggle towards having more money will always exist in the future but in the interim one should not forget to live and breathe life.