What Really Is Money?

Written by, Samuel K. Burlum, Investigative Reporter
and author of The Green Lane, a syndicated column
Published on 6/06/16, a SamBurlum.com Exclusive

Ralph Waldo Emerson once wrote, “Money is not the true currency; it is nothing more than a translation of one’s value it has offered another. Once the steward of said value realizes that money is nothing but a measuring stick in which all value is exchanged, men will no longer stride to make money, the will strive to create the value that is behind it.”

Money is nothing than an instrument

When most people view money, they see a paper currency that we exchange our skill set, and/or, products and/or services in return for a piece of paper that has a dollar value assigned to it. We view Money as the sign of wealth and the instrument in which all wealth and value is measured. Yet for the most Americans, as hard as the working class and small business owners’ work, money seems to be the one thing that is most hard to come by in their lives.

Money is nothing than an instrument in which we calculate the value of one’s time, energy, knowledge, labor, or production when it is offered to an audience in the market place for consumption by others. So why do we put so much emphasis on paper cash? Well that is simple; because today’s financial and economic system is ruled by the banking industry, which has standardized the measurement of money for their convenience and domination. Whenever money is saved, spent, borrowed, housed, banks profit from money coming in, and going out of their financial institutions.

However more individuals and small businesses are finding other ways to conduct commerce and avoid the banking system all together. Transactions conducted by way and means of crypto currency and barter are on the rise. These methods of payment for goods and services are outside the traditional banking system, and offer more direct control over one’s own value of their offerings to their clients.
Though cash maybe still king, with the majority of individuals and businesses still prefer cash as the primary method of payment for their goods and services; alternatives are edging into store fronts of Main Street. In Madison, Wisconsin, over 600 businesses accept and use a trade credit platform known as Badger Barter.

Today, money is nothing more than a faith based measurement of one’s value proposition to another. Businesses and their proprietors use money to get the things in their life that they need and desire. So what if they had other methods of exchange to obtain these items that would give them even more buying power over their purchases? Would it not matter then if it was cash, barter, debit, credit, crypto currency, and other forms of value measurements, as long as the end result was the same?

No one is thinking outside the box more than the Millennia and Z generation. Growing up in a technology world, where every application to conduct daily business is at the touch of a screen, younger consumers and entrepreneurs are trending toward using electronic forms of payment more than ever before. E-wallets and automatic bank deposit and automated bill pay are eliminating the dependency on hard cash.

While consumers think of price when evaluating the worthiness of a product or service; producers think of profit in the terms of value creation. In a world where most average consumers are addicted to roll back prices; business owners need to explore every option available that will help them retain the value they create. Both crypto currency and barter offer viable alternatives.

Barter offers the better of both worlds since each party within the purchase sale negotiation have even buying power, and an equal opportunity to express their viewpoint on the exact value they create. Barter platforms either in large networks of businesses or in a local exchange with your neighbor can lead to a more direct path to ownership in real time than the use of paper money. Paper money still has a moderator, a banking system, which profits from your value exchange, whether you are trying to save the money or spend the money. Banks have transitioned from a lending institution to a fee based business model, profiting every time you engage in a purchase using your debit card.

So if you think of what the real money is, what the absolute currency and commodity is, it is the very product and/or service you offer. Once you realize that as long as you create value with your offerings, you can gather all the things you need and want via equal or greater value exchange, and paper money is just one delivery tool in getting there.



Join Today!
(Learn More)

Sam Burlum

An Investigative Reporter who author’s articles related to economic development, innovation, green technology, business strategy, and public policy concerns. Samuel K. Burlum is also a career entrepreneur, who currently is the CEO and President of Extreme Energy Solutions Inc., a green tech company located in Ogdensburg, New Jersey. Samuel K. Burlum lends his expertise as a Consultant and Managing Director of ESLC Inc., a consulting firm to start-up companies, small businesses, and mid-size enterprises, providing advisement in a number of areas including strategic business planning, business development, supply chain management, and systems integration. View more articles written by Sam at SamBurlum.com

  • About Badger Barter

    Badger Barter is a vast network of businesses that utilize the platform of barter, a type of trading, for goods and services; an alternative to traditional currency exchange when using cash to make purchases. Badger Barter is designed to help grow your business, by helping you conserve your cash for other business growth needs; while offering a credit system where you can purchase business needs, vital to sustain business operations.

    By trading, or “bartering” between a host of businesses within the organization, a business can virtually get started and secure needs such as... READ MORE >>
  • Let’s Get Social!

    Facebook Posts

    Unable to display Facebook posts.
    Show error

    Error: Error validating application. Application has been deleted.
    Type: OAuthException
    Code: 190
    Please refer to our Error Message Reference.
  • Contact Us


    1500 W. Main Street, Suite 303
    Sun Prairie, WI 53590

    Mon. - Fri. 8:00am to 4pm