What is money and where does it reside?

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Sclass
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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by Sclass » Sun Mar 27, 2016 12:01 am

Ego wrote: Some of the most honest people I know are illegal immigrants working illegally for illegal businesses selling products that they contractually agreed to export but rerouted back to the US.
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Sounds interesting. Can you tell what the product is without outing anyone? Just curious.

I ran an auto parts business that used a Canadian smuggler to bring in lower priced OEM parts destined for the Canadian market. He drove them over to Vancouver in his trunk and shipped them to me from a post office just on our side of the border. They were small and high priced items with a good markup (for some reason unknown to me) in the US.

Sorry to be OT, but it just sounded interesting. Ethically I didn't feel I was hurting anyone. I think we were just stomping all over some agreement Honda made with its vendors in the US and Canada.

7Wannabe5
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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Sun Mar 27, 2016 8:20 am

Okay, so according to the article linked above, "collectables" were the first money. This is interesting to me because the majority of my net worth is currently stored in the form of rare books rather than money. The article touches on the fact that coordinating entities such as EBay and Amazon have actually made collectables into something that can be easily valued and traded more like a gold coin. OTOH, what we now think of as money has become fiat.

I have limited interest in paying myself minimum wage to be a high volume shipping chimp, so I try to only scout books that have reasonably high value. The average price of a book in my current inventory is right around $50. When I first list a fresh batch of books for sale, some of them will sell off quite rapidly, but then the rest, because the demand for very rare books is intermittent, will continue to sell at a slow but surprisingly predictable rate. IOW, it is not that much less likely that a book I put into inventory 5 years ago will sell tomorrow vs. a book I put into inventory 6 months ago, and there are very few books that will never sell. Somebody on the planet will someday be interested in buying that self-published book of poetry, if only to get it out of circulation.

So, cash fiat money is worth what it is worth today to settle your current debts or make current transactions. But, other valuables such as rare books and real estate are generally held to be worth more than their must-sell-today-fire-sale-price. Your house is generally acknowledged to be worth what you could likely sell it for if you put it on the market for a period of months rather than hours. Investments in stock change price all day long. If I set up my automatic re-pricing service in a stupid manner that would cause me to race to the bottom against another dealer then the price of one of my books could change rapidly and drop to no profit after transaction costs. The way I have it set up now low-ball offers are ignored and I generally match price with rational competitors. Every once in a while I go in and tweak the system manually. Many of the books I am selling are so rare I am the only seller anywhere, and in that case I set price based on my concept of the likely buyer. For instance, a book written on the topic of the original installation of electricity in tall buildings in New York at the time the operation was being conducted would have to be worth several hundred dollars, at least, to an interested party, but I wouldn't expect that interested party to be necessarily actively searching for the book this afternoon. My thought at time of purchase would be along the lines of something like 80% chance somebody will give me $500 for this book sometime this year. So, unique collectables like a designer piece of jewelry from the 1930s function differently on the market than standard collectables such as heavy link gold chain. If you live in a new house in a cookie-cutter subdivision you can get a much more accurate valuation off of Zillow than if you live in a custom built, half-renovated house in the historic district.

When you are able to sell your services in small units of time at the margin then your skills become more indistinguishable from money. According to Taleb, some anti-fragile forms of financial dependence would be taxi driver, artisan, prostitute and f8ck you money. I know a few Uber drivers and a couple professional escorts and they basically sell their services in chunks at the margin on the internet using the appropriate coordinating services in the same manner that I sell books, and the price they are able to charge for their services goes up and down based on the availability of other people willing to provide the same service, with high-quality escort service being more like a rare/unique book and driving service being more like a standard gold chain. I haven't spoken with either of the escorts I know in a few years, but I was informed by one of them that I could likely make around $250/hr when I was in my mid-40s. Taleb also said that you should always lease rather than buy anything you fly, float or f*ck, but I do not see how this makes good sense, because a modern egalitarian marriage contract (sans possible expense of child-bearing-rearing) just on the basis of sex alone would be a much better deal than leasing at the margin, up to the equilibrium point where the wife is spending approximately $24,000/year on expenses not mutually desired. Of course, celibacy would be the big money saver, and on the dating market where trade is generally socially constrained to barter, I think you are a fool if you are male and you don't work out and/or learn to play a musical instrument/dance and/or learn to mimic the behavior and dress of some celebrity generally considered to be sexy and vaguely approximating your phenotype. Also, key skill would be learning under what circumstances telling a woman that she looks like an angel will work in your favor or not.

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bryan
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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by bryan » Sun Mar 27, 2016 11:03 pm

I've always been a bit weary about having so little physical wealth, living in my van. Other than the van and some precious metals, I just don't have much else: everything is spread across different institutions, accounted for digitally. I figure this is a fine strategy for the world we live in now. Eventually I would like to own more physical goods or productive land (though I do _not_ want to waste my time farming). Then again, owning a fleet of vans or overlanding vehicles may be a wise investment in a Mad Max world :shock:

A family member of mine is also into collecting a cache of uncommon books and slow-selling them online. Has proven very predictably profitable, so far. He focuses on a few niche categories of books of which he or his partner have some background in. They enjoy the time they spend hunting for books at estate sales or flea markets etc.
7Wannabe5 wrote: Of course, celibacy would be the big money saver
Sounds like VR porn/affairs/hookups/dating could be a big money-maker market then.
7Wannabe5 wrote: if you are male and you don't work out and/or learn to play a musical instrument/dance and/or learn to mimic the behavior and dress of some celebrity generally considered to be sexy and vaguely approximating your phenotype. Also, key skill would be learning under what circumstances telling a woman that she looks like an angel will work in your favor or not.
Dancing, I think, has been my main advertisement of attraction in such circumstances. Very lucky for that since I have failed completely in the pure looks/conversation department.

Most women I am interested in tend to have some element of intrigue in their fashion-sense or body language or their individuality/charisma/personality is very apparent and matches what I am... well, attracted to.

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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Mon Mar 28, 2016 7:42 am

bryan said: I've always been a bit weary about having so little physical wealth, living in my van. Other than the van and some precious metals, I just don't have much else: everything is spread across different institutions, accounted for digitally. I figure this is a fine strategy for the world we live in now. Eventually I would like to own more physical goods or productive land (though I do _not_ want to waste my time farming). Then again, owning a fleet of vans or overlanding vehicles may be a wise investment in a Mad Max world :shock:
I am very flip-flop ambivalent about traveling light vs. developing a self-sufficient/productive home base myself. I am very focused on my urban perma-culture project as my primary 7 year goal (3/1/2015-3/1/2022.) My DD24 and her BF are very much into the idea of tiny house living, so I was semi-joking with them over the holiday weekend that I might just bequeath my completed project to them, if they will allow me to return to the property when I am 85 (year 2050), at which point I would like to be placed into a sort of elder-compost tiny house wire-mesh-bottom platform structure over a compost pile, so if I become incontinent the urine will just drain unto some wood chips, and then one day they can just pull a release lever and drop my body through the floor. I already have long-standing verbal contract with my 3 younger sisters that we will pool our resources to buy a ramshackle cottage on the shore of Lake Huron and care for each other after all our men are dead. So, the elder compost idea is just a potential back up plan for my last 7 year life-cycle.

I have currently mitigated a good deal of my travel jones by choosing to live in a highly varied immigrant community, but I think it is likely that my next life-cycle (2022-2029) (age 57-64) will involve more exploration. At this juncture, there seems to be a plethora of baby-boomer-about-to-retire-with-an-excess-of-money men who would desire my company while traveling and would likely be happy to cover most of the expenses. OTOH, I have an odd borderline introvert/extrovert personality which causes me to desire/enjoy company when at home, but not so much when I am out and about in the world. For instance, I very much enjoy being completely on my own in a crowded airport or on a fresh hiking trail. So, it may be my preference to engage mainly in very frugal solo travel adventures. For either or both of these options to remain viable, I think maintaining or improving my physical conditioning should be my primary future-me-forward goal with passive income and liquid funds increase being secondary. I have only vague plans as of yet for my 3 potential life-cycles from 2029-2050, age 64-85, but I am reasonably confident that I will be able to rely on Social Security income to some extent.
Sounds like VR porn/affairs/hookups/dating could be a big money-maker market then.
I think it already is. Kind of depressing to me being somebody who came of age before people even started wearing bike helmets. Obviously, sexuality is a huge expense for any individual member of any species that reproduces in that manner, but within the context of payment of bride-price being an important human event related to the invention of money, the cost/benefit of choosing to practice celibacy would vary with what proportion of the population of each gender made that decision given 50/50 gender-neutral birth rate. As the article you posted made clear, under most circumstances the demand for females is higher than the demand for males, but there are obvious exceptions to this rule. For instance, when my recent-ex returned to Iran for a visit after a divorce from an American wife, the war had killed a huge number of men his age, and he was relatively very affluent, so far flung semi-acquaintances were practically throwing their beautiful daughters his way. However, in a situation of peace time affluence, relative testosterone levels and/or primate-dominant-hierarchy dynamics, will cause the sexual demand of the male population to be about 1.6 times the demand of the female population. So, all other things being equal (which they rarely are), if a male and a female human are both anteing up for the expense of pure sexuality, both would likely deem it fair if the male threw down $1.60 for every $1 the female threw down, and that is what is sometimes referred to as P.O.P.
Dancing, I think, has been my main advertisement of attraction in such circumstances. Very lucky for that since I have failed completely in the pure looks/conversation department.

Most women I am interested in tend to have some element of intrigue in their fashion-sense or body language or their individuality/charisma/personality is very apparent and matches what I am... well, attracted to.
I think it's wonderful how varied human preferences can be. There must be a million different combinations of attractive qualities and behaviors. My experience is that I am 80% universal mixer and 20% total freak.

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bryan
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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by bryan » Sun May 08, 2016 4:38 pm

wasn't sure which thread to post a link to this video, Yanis Varoufakis predicts another Great Depression, and more (pretty interesting nuggets): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P2Zpkz7lK-s

introduction touches on what is money so this thread could work. Was also considering a number of SHTF threads.

There were some interesting points on game theory. When he is giving the example of grades, 1-9, as an INTJ I was wanting to go outside the bounds of the game and announcing some sort of coordination signal that we should all pick 9. The game was a nice example of self-fulfilling optimism/pessimism in more noisy games (and how the QE and low interest rates is ironically putting weight behind pessimism, even though we have very high corporate profits).

He does take a pot shot at Bitcoin which does not convince at all (was surprised a question didn't ask for more information).

He then goes into the idea of a centralized government owned electronic banking system (alternative, digital currency denominated in another currency) which is "not connected" to the rest of the worlds markets. He says Greece was very close to hitting the 'on' button for this sort of scheme.

He does not believe in the possibility of a technological, apolitical money driving out fiat money, calling it fantasy, yet seems to be anti-big-banks (except of course the gov bank). Sounds ironic but ultimately, it's the same type of argument as e.g. health insurance or healthcare. The big reason he hates Bitcoin-like money is the government's lack of tools to handle a crisis to manipulate money supply or liquidity. heh.

I wonder if what his thoughts on crypto-anarchy or cyberpunk are, smart contracts or otherwise increasingly digital representation of wealth outside of meatspace laws or enforcement. I imagine he has some inkling since he did some work with Valve on digital economies. I don't think he really considers apolitical money (like Bitcoin?) to be fantasy.. after all I (and others like me) put my faith (read optimism) more in Bitcoin than certain other monies.

He does mention a pretty interesting thing that I haven't thought of, re: government contracts with private companies with stipulations of investments in non-rich areas (not CA, WA, etc).

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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by ether » Sun May 08, 2016 7:41 pm

Money is the legal right to claim property: physical, labor, and intellectual

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bryan
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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by bryan » Sun May 08, 2016 11:18 pm

Accounting disruption coming soon?: http://pubpub.ito.com/pub/reinventing-b ... accounting

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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by bryan » Fri Feb 10, 2017 9:44 pm

Pretty interesting post recently on re-considering wealth: http://www.doomsteaddiner.net/blog/2017 ... on-wealth/

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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Mon Feb 13, 2017 9:01 am

@bryan: That article is pretty much exactly in alignment with what I was trying to express with the graphs I posted regarding Extreme Late Sexuality. The motivation to retire Early/Extreme is inherent of the same values system which produced a well-known humorous Iranian sketch (would link but can't locate ) in which an unattractive older man is being overtly rejected in his bid for an attractive young bride until he throws some of his lifetime accumulation of gold into the pot. I think the term "life-energy" which Joel Dominguez used in "YMOYL" to describe what any free individual is choosing to trade for money when employed by other is also what the author of the article is trying to get at with his attempt to explore the Venn diagram intersection between health and money in order to re-define wealth. Since mating/dating/marital contracts in modern culture are the most likely to be entered into and maintained on basis of generalized barter rather than the rather strict cash exchange contract of conventional labor market employment, I would suggest that a rough and reasonably adequate and inclusive measure of the "weal" or total available life energy of an individual could be derived based on some combination of accumulated/current financial and sexual functioning. For instance, a middle-aged individual with a long-standing happy marriage who owns her own farm mortgage free might have the same current "weal" as a young man who has no difficulty getting a date any given Friday night and is confident in his ability to earn $X/hr in trade for application of his life-energy at margin.

This method for measuring total "weal" could also be quite revealing of "privilege." For instance, there was a recent period during which an individual could basically purchase Canadian citizenship for entire family for around $800,000. Therefore, one could also estimate this as the rough value received by a resident of a third world country who derived Canadian citizenship for self and offspring through marriage to a Canadian citizen. Therefore, one could also use this number as rough estimate of "head-start" granted to native of first-world country due to available infrastructure, common resources, perception of status, etc. etc. Since, as we learned earlier on this thread, money was likely first developed by humans in order to pay bride-price, and tribal alliance is clear benefit of marriage, this methodology become increasingly coherent.

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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:03 am

In 1717, when the population of the village of Detroit was a few hundred at most, "Card Money," ordinary playing cards cut into our pieces, stamped and signed by officials was in use. So, this might be approximately the level of relatively isolated population at which humans who were previously aware of the usefulness of money might choose to re-invent it. Of course, this was likely further promoted by the fact that the French soldiers and fur traders who inhabited the village at that time were known to engage in recreational gambling.

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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:18 am

I wonder if the opposite rule of thumb would also apply? IOW, if an individual were able to create and maintain approximately 250 social relationships complex enough to be inclusive of barter/sharing/lending level of trust, then that individual would have no need to use money? Obviously, a complete hermit living alone with nature would also have no need of money, but a relatively high need for skills. So, maybe, a total combination of approximately 250 skill sets towards self-sufficiency AND social connections inclusive of trust would generally serve?

Of course, only one social connection is needed if the model allows that person to procure goods/services with money. For instance, I take my boots to a friend who has cobber-skills and he fixes them and I give him a bushel of apples I grew vs. I go to the mall with my BF and he buys me new boots.

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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by Dragline » Tue Mar 07, 2017 10:28 am

I'm under the impression that barter economies, to the extent the exist, do not exist for very long unless the community is relatively small and even then are relatively limited. A form of money -- cigarettes, salt, shells -- soon emerges. Some of the oldest writings are in fact records of storage of grain and other commodities, along with records of debts owed, which leads you to the creation of money.

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Re: What is money and where does it reside?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:03 pm

Right. Money is a fairly primitive human tool and the market is a fairly primitive human pattern formation. Also, since humans are omnivorous, scavenging, out-breeders, trade (and raiding) conducted over a much greater distance than outer bounds of village nucleus is also very primitive pattern.

So, the maximum utility of money usage would likely occur somewhere in the intersection of resilience, robustness, efficiency and anti-fragility. Trade at a distance through chain of strangers for goods not available locally would be obvious pattern (long loop in system of individual) in which money would provide high utility. There is a level on which information somehow serves the same purpose as trusted-social-connection or skill. For instance, I feel a little bit different about purchasing the "gourmet", retail-outlet-brand-packaged cookies I like from my corner drugstore, now that I have a pretty good inkling about the near fields of wheat location of the Canadian bakery where they are produced.

At the margin, or upon the tangent, or for the moment, any individual could declare themselves financially independent (vagabond version)if they had no ongoing contracts with others that required fulfillment with funds. So, another thing I wonder about is whether there is an essential head tax.

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