Theoriekultur - Wiki
Patterns Of Demonetisation
German Original Version: MusterDerDemonetarisierung

Patterns Of Demonetisation

Contribution to the First PURPLSOC Conference 2015 by /FranzNahrada.

Franz: Its still an early work in progress and I thank everybody who gave valuable feedback.
I did not even make an attempt to publish it yet, it needs careful crafting by many cooperating minds. Therefore I declare this an OpenTheory project and I will act as maintainer, valuing and placing your contributions.


Patterns of a demonetised society

Money, the means of buying and selling in the market, is the central social nexus of modern societies.

  • It is the form in which practically all individuals, be they producers or consumers relate to each other.
  • It is the form in which the wealth of nations is expressed and measured, managed and allocated.
  • With a highly developed division of labor, everybodies wellbeing and survival depends on money.
Life without money seems to be at best a primitive atavism.
The fall of communism is interpreted as the ultimate failure of the dream of a moneyless or money-free society.

At the same time, our global society is currently experiencing an economic crisis based on the increasing and generally recognized dissociation between what is called the "real economy" and the economy of money and its derivatives.
There is much reason to assume that there is a systemic reason for this dissociation, characterised for example by Jeremy Rifkin as the "Zero Marginal Cost Dilemma": The more productivity is created by automation and integrated logistics, the more precarious the business of production for monetary returns becomes, because the monetary value of commodities tends to fall and eventually vanish. The consequences for the productive sector of society are enormous.

“Let us remember that the automatic machine is the precise economic equivalent of slave labor. Any labor which competes with slave labor must accept the economic consequences of slave labor.”
"The modern industrial revolution is bound to devalue the human brain at least in its simpler and more routine decisions. The average human being [will have] nothing to sell that is worth anyone's money to buy.
The answer, of course, is to have a society based on human values other than buying or selling."(Norbert Wiener, Cybernetics)

At the same time the very same system abounds in material wealth, which makes it possible to maintain the powerful illusion of capital growth for some time, maybe even many decades, by creating debts. The creation of money based on financial self-reference therefore has been exploding, simulating the lack of sufficient social value creation and leading to tremendous social disparities and disfunctionalities - besides its imminent contradiction of being an outright long term fraud.

Yet very few attempts have been undertaken to conceive a society that crosses the money border. Even the political left has broadly accepted the market as a key element of future societies. Some fantastic assumptions about technocratic solutions, distribution done by algorithms and computer systems are still around, but they are not tested in practise - to say the least.

We lack a transformative design that really implies a living interplay of various patterns mediating nonmonetary social relations. The following collection is in some points leaving traditional pathways of the political left.

Why Demonetise?

  • Money is increasingly losing its relation to economic value
  • Increasing precarity by disappearance of jobs
  • Material abundance conflicts with the lack of buying power of the many
  • Money gives the wrong signals to society, especially when it is in the hands of a few (system B)

  • Money can be a training ground for demonetisation

Why Patterns ?

  • No monolithic system, but design challenge
  • Not wishful thinking, but proven elements

Pattern Collection ->German

Basic Patterns of Human Relations

Traditional Societal / Cultural Practises

  • schenat ha jobel (Jubilee Year) (‏aries=יובל‎) in which all debts are cancelled.
  • Potlatch (a tradition Native American gifting ceremony in the Northwest)

Beyond Industrial Society - the new productive forces

"“In terms of the ways in which the machine altered our relations to one another and to ourselves, it mattered not in the least whether it turned out cornflakes or cadillacs. The restructuring of human work and association was shaped by the technique of fragmentation that is the essence of machine technology. The essence of automation technology is the opposite. It is integral and decentralist in depth, just as the machine was fragmentary, centralist, and superficial in its patterning of human relationships. ”

Specific Patterns of Transformation in Current Capitalistic Systems

Communication Instead of Market - towards a factual coordination of social actions

Money cannot simply be "abbolished"; it would need concsious action and design to implement something that serves needs better.

(much more ?)

Patterns of Survival and Rational Production

The times of seeming identity of economic growth and wellbeing are over; globalized production and auutomation led to redistribution of wealth and production. One expresion of this is the dwindling of welfare-state institutions around the globe. We are most likely at the beginning of this process which put more and more people out of the regular labor process and forces them to look for sources of survival.
In addition to this, the "anthropocene" caused by globalisation and global integral factory is also recklessly distroying the natural foundation of human life. The necessity of establishing a sustainable societal metabolism embedded in natural cycles conflicts with the .

Patterns of Segregated Spaces / Spheres of Collective Self - Determination

Visions of another society

  • Utopia has vanished, because it is implausible
  • Dystopia has succeeded as mass entertainment attitude
Therefore, the shere work with Utopias is inherently political and it also is necessary to ground single steps in an overarching context. But the positive Description of the future requires more productive fantasy than ever.

some fun research:



(C) Die Autoren changed: 28. Juni 2018