My Future Fantasy | The Money of Mars
At some point in time, perhaps within our lifetimes if Elon Musk succeeds, humanity will establish a permanent presence on Mars. When this occurs, Mars can potentially "start over" in the same way that the United States "started over" 240 years ago. In so many ways the US (and the rest of the world) needs to collapse and start over. Unfortunately the most likely scenario for such a collapse would result in more government not less.
I want government to work for me, to be responsive to my needs and the needs of my family, friends, and neighbors. I want to be able to tell it what to do, what needs to be done that I can't do myself. I am tired of government telling me what to do. I want to wipe out the millions of pages of needless regulations and get rid of the army of bureaucrats who maintain them. I want to change the mindset of government servants (including all elected and unelected officials and civil servants) such that they know deep down in their core that they work for us.
I want sound money. Money that can not be created by whim. I want money that holds its value. In other words I want gold. The reason I want gold and not silver is that gold is gold. Silver requires some ratio to gold - either fixed or floating - either tends to complicate matters. I want simplicity.
This is a futurist fantasy. I chose Mars, but would be truly happy for it to become true on Earth.
Money is gold, and nothing else. -James Pierpont Morgan, 1913
I want gold to be the unit of money. The basic unit of money would be the gram of gold, gAu, 0.9999 pure. The same unit BitGold uses. No dollars, euros, pounds, or yuan. Just grams of gold. I would have physical gold specie in various denominations: 1gAu, 5gAu, 10gAu, 50gAu, 100gAu, 1kgAu. The gold specie could be in the form of coins, cubes, or bars - all equally valid. For heavy circulation coins alloyed with copper and silver would be minted, but the gold content would be the exact 1, 5, 10 gAu, etc. The money would just be called g, gAu, or GAU. "How much for a cup of coffee?" "That'll be point-oh-five g, sir." Perhaps silver could be used for fractional gAu coins. Minted from silver, but denominated in fractional gAu. This implies a fixed ratio of silver to gold, but I could live with that.
There would be "paper" currency as well, perhaps including fractional gAu values. I use "paper", but the material could be anything as long as it was difficult to counterfeit. The technology implored by Valaurum would be perfect for fractional gAu currency. Other "paper" currencies could be used for larger denomination gAu units to avoid the need to carry gold specie in one's pocket.
Bailment services such as BitGold would exist alongside traditional banks. As with BitGold you would keep your gold safely in storage, 100% allocated as now, and have all ow the features provided by BitGold. The only difference would be the card. It would be denominated in gAu (and fractions thereof). It would still be a good idea to have load it with virtual gold before use - that way if stolen only the card balance can be drained, not your entire savings.
Traditional banks would still exist, but with one difference - the money would be gold. Banks could not lend more than the funds on hand and would either need to loan from savings on deposit or borrow from the Treasury. Saving accounts would need to pay real interest to entice people to deposit with the bank. Banks would need to have sufficient gold specie on hand to redeem "paper" money on demand.
A main Treasury would need to exist to maintain gold held by the government, not in circulation and would from time to time mint new coins or print new gold-backed paper. The Treasury could also outsource minting and printing to private venture companies as long as strict quality control was maintained. The Treasury would also assume the current role of the Fed in terms of lending gold to banks to loan to customers.
Laws and Regulations
No society can exist without some agreed upon set of laws and regulations, however a much simpler set would allow prosperity flourish. I am not a bleeding heart, but I would not support a death penalty for the sole reason new evidence can not save a man after he has been executed. I also do not believe in "zero tolerance." Every case must be decided on its own merits.
That having been said I would support "life with good behavior" for counterfeiting, murder, and other crimes that make one a true danger to society. Otherwise I would try to keep the prison population as low as possible by decriminalizing substance abuse and so called "victimless crimes."
I would have a Bureau of Weights and Measures to oversee coinage and to make sure that people really do get what they pay for. The same goes for some kind of Disease Control and Public sanitation.
All laws and regulations should have a sunset provision, such that they cease to exist after a specified time. This would keep the number of laws and regulations to the required minimum.
Last but not least I want all units and measurements to be SI ( Système international d'unités, aka the Metric System). can you tell I'm a US citizen.
I won't go into a lot of detail on this other than to say that all political positions would have term limits and be part-time, unpaid positions. As I said, I want government working for me, not itself, and certainly not against me.
I am not sure how to handle lower level civil servants. These folks are probably underpaid anyway, but I am guessing that term limits would also keep fresh blood and ideas in the position.
I could go on at length, but this is a post not a book … and it is a fantasy post at that.
The only part that in not fantasy is BitGold and its ability to allow each and every one of us to adopt our own personal gold standard.