Date: Wed Dec 01 2004 - 13:39:53 EST
In a reply to Paul B, Jerry wrote: Some time ago (on November 19) you wrote: >>>> As a matter of fact Fred, I know of no one who would not be prepared to accept a certain quantity of gold for any of their property , ( should they wish to sell it, even if they later had to exchange it for paper for other reasons), that is to say that this commodity remains the money commodity, par excellence.. <<< Jerry: Interesting, since I know of no one (save, possibly, Claus, Akira, or yourself) who would be prepared to accept a certain quantity of gold in exchange for their property. I know that if I wanted to sell property like a house (which I don't own) or a boat (which I do) I wouldn't accept gold as payment. To begin with, I would have no confidence that it was real or that it was 'pure'. I certainly wouldn't want to pay the extra expense and put up with a delay to hire an appraiser. Also, I would feel very uncomfortable accepting gold from a security perspective (I'd much rather receive a bank check). And then I'd have the hassle and delay of selling the gold. And -- given the frequent fluctuations in the price of gold (yes, gold _does_ have a price) -- I would feel uncomfortable holding on to the gold since I am not interested in gold speculation. And -- more to the point -- I know of no one in my community who would accept gold as payment for property of any significant worth. If someone went to my landlord's office and proposed to pay for real estate in gold, s/he would get laughed out of the office. Claus: You might be right in claiming that gold is no longer money today, but your arguments are unconvincing and don't support your claim. The essence of your argument is that gold is not money because it does not circulate as money. Well, such an argument is only acceptable in a quantity theory framework, because according to this theory money has only one function - that of means of circulation - and for this reason money cannot have value of its own. In the framework of Marx's theory your argument is unsustainable, because in this case the prevalence of the function of means of payment and the development of an integrated banking system imply that money does NOT need to circulate in person, without being displaced from its role as money. I think in normal conditions I would not accept (and I guess no one would) an uncertified piece of gold in the example you gave. I wouldn't because gold coins are not issued for the the usual functions of means of circulation and of payment. This doesn't prove your point either, because gold is issued in certified bars which perform very specific functions of money, allowed by the nature of the global monetary system (credit system in Marx's terms). Thus, the fact that you and I don't use gold bars in our activities does not prove that they don't perform functions of money. Comradely, Claus.
This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Sun Dec 05 2004 - 00:00:01 EST