After 23 and a half years, and one day, and maybe 9 hours or so, give or take (Mom? Wanna help me out on this one?) I have come to the realization that I cannot afford everything I want. Tonight I was really tempted to go see a movie (I was thinking Ray again actually)(Told you it was good). I decided that I couldn't afford it, especially since I want to go see a movie tomorrow. Plus I have no income, a large rent, and a really large tuition. Oh yeah, and this little wedding thing coming up in just over 6 months...
Now, this is nothing new - I've been living on approximately no money for most of my life, and it would periodically occur to me that somehow this wasn't good. And, like many of the times I've come to this realization, it was tied very closely to the realization that lots of the people I know also can't afford everything they want. There seems to be a system-wide problem. So I want to ask, isn't there a better a way to do this?
Couldn't we just somehow make everything free? Hell, I'll even limit it - let's just make non-fungible goods free. We can charge for finite, consumable products. But what about a movie? How often does a theater sell out? Couldn't we just subsidize theaters and have an open admission policy? I realize that there are all sorts of issues about incentivizing Hollywood, and competition creating a better product, but I think we could work around those things. And maybe the same idea could apply to sporting events. And concerts. Ok, I realize that all of this is totally unpractical, but dammit! I want to go to a movie. And I don't want to pay. And some chocolate ice cream might be nice too.
Perhaps in the alternative, do we really need currency? Couldn't we just go to a good ol' fashioned system of barter and trade? Because I'd be happy to spend 20 minutes waxing philosophical in exchange for a dozen eggs and a yolk for my oxen. No, I'm not trying to rip you off, this is a good deal. Fine, ok, 25 minutes. Listen pal, you're not going to find any better philosophizing in this town - if you need it thought about, I'm your man. You'll take half an hour? Throw in an extra 3 eggs and you've got yourself a deal. Pleasure doing buisness with you.