A cashless society looks inevitable. The cashless transaction trend started with the use of plastic – credits cards. With the spread of internet accessibility and use, the cashless model of transacting expanded to remote dealings. People from all over the world can now do business – buy, sell, and offer services without seeing each other or the need for the physical exchange of money.
I have been musing on the idea of a cashless society. One that is not governed by fiat or any other form of money. One that will recognize and accept the value of work, goods, dollar, yen, bitcoin, and other assets one can offer as payment. I would say, very similar to the barter system our ancestors know.
Whereas the ancient barter system where limitations abound, the new barter system will have technology to back it up. Before, a lot of dissimilar goods cannot be used as barter items for one transaction. A piece of bread will not fairly compensate for a cow, nor will a bushel of corn pay for a track of land. Thus, the need for monetary units. Today, tokenization and the blockchain technology can be used to assign values to assets. So, a landowner can buy a loaf of bread and pay with 0.001 of his land.
The new barter system could open a whole new world of commerce. Market interaction and wealth will no longer be subject to the whims of a volatile currency or currencies and be controlled by a government. Of course, certain laws and regulations will have to be in place in order to protect the interest of the people and to uphold the principles of fair and just exchanges.
In a society with the barter system in place, businesses will no longer have to factor in additional costs levied by financial houses and the government. People will be able to practice their craft and earn money from doing what they do best. As one will no longer be subject to the value of ‘money’, people will have more options of creating and accumulating wealth, managing assets, and this will eventually lead to lowered prices, personalized services, and improved quality of goods and services. It will also significantly help in easing international cash flow problem of businesses.
I recognize that this vision is still far off. It might not even come to reality. But, it would be interesting to see a world free of service charges, withdrawal fees, forex, taxes, and other payments that we need to settle in order to transmit or use our own money.