Money Can't Buy Life
The Economic Enigma of Money vs Life: [A Social Value Disorder]
Money Can't Buy Life
By Craig Bridges / filmsforaction.org
Aug 5, 2016

It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest” (Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations).

In the context of daily living we view money as a means to life as it allows us to obtain food, water, shelter and a relative standard of living to what we earn. Be that as it may, the true concept of ‘economics’ is inconsistent with the practices which currently govern our existence. “Rules of the House” or “Management of the Household” is the Hellenistic translation of Economy. This reflects its etymology as the natural law [rules] of the earth [household]. This law constitutes a symbiotic relationship in which we either align with these rules of sustainability, resource management, and optimized efficiency or allow self-interest to consume our development. Throughout history society has perpetually manufactured the very issues it seeks to resolve. Whether war, recessions, poverty, or environmental degradation the notions of profit and self-maximizing interest must be understood as fundamental to such compulsions.

Professor John McMutry analyses this notion of economic self-interest in his book ‘The Cancer Stage of Capitalism’. He argues money has consumed its use as a medium of exchange and has ceased to function as an exchange to a means of life. The conditions in which it has become relevant exist autonomously in a system of exponential growth which sustain nothing but private possession. Therefore, the private interests of the butcher, the brewer and the baker echo contemporary economic circumstances far beyond the bounds of the Smith’s expectations. Applied to the Hellenistic translation of economics, and its definition of increased efficiency this relationship can be seen as parasitic. McMutry States;

“All the coordinates of global environmental, social and economic meltdown are in fact connected, and their common cause lies in proliferating mutant sequences of money-demand whose defining principle – as the dominant economic paradigm that houses them – is not to serve, but to feed on life-hosts.” (McMutry, 1998:10).

We have become hosts of the cancerous growth that is the money sequence. The crucial analysis of modern economics which TZM and McMutry have to offer is that it is a value disorder. Money is used as a means of reinforcing such values which are enforced by capitalist modes of living. Our perception of living has become distorted by excessive consumption, growing waste as a result of unplanned extraction and planned obsolescence; we now suffer from great global inequalities and un-healthy relationships. Not only this, we are individuals who work our forty-hour work weeks in order to pay debts and consume trends. It’s frustrating because many are active in seeking change but so long as it remains systematic money will regulate our means to life. If change is to be successful we must all acknowledge our manufactured values and aim to restore them collectively. Solutions have been proposed and are even evolving; such as resource based economies [RBE] and gift economies.

Check out: 

http://thezeitgeistmovementuk.com/

McMutry, J. (1998). “The Cancer Stage of Capitalism: And Its Cure”, Pluto Press; First Thus edition.

3.5 ·
1


Love Films For Action? 

Films For Action empowers citizens with the information and perspectives essential to creating a more just, sustainable, and democratic society.

If you feel like you get some value from this library, consider making a donation today. Every little bit helps.

Trending Today
In the Absence of the Village, Mothers Struggle Most
Beth Berry7,326 views today ·
Native American Girls Describe the Real History Behind Thanksgiving
2 min5,244 views today ·
This Is How Globalized Capitalism Operates Today
4 min4,415 views today ·
Black Friday Is Buy Nothing Day: Here Are 10 Films to Inspire a Joyous Shopping-Free Holiday
Tim Hjersted4,394 views today ·
The Adorkable Misogyny of The Big Bang Theory
22 min4,281 views today ·
The Canary Effect: Kill the Indian, Save the Man (2006)
63 min3,709 views today ·
Today I Rise: This Beautiful Short Film Is Like a Love Poem For Your Heart and Soul
4 min2,370 views today ·
Revolution and American Indians: “Marxism is as Alien to My Culture as Capitalism”
Russell Means1,339 views today ·
Be a Good Consumer. This Film Will Show You How.
5 min942 views today ·
Load More
Join us on Facebook
Money Can't Buy Life