Wonderful Book(s) on Alternative Currencies!

I have just started reading an excellent book on Alternative Currencies which is understandable, comprehensive and compelling.  Its message is that we must develop local and/or regional currencies to supplement our U.S. national currency if we are to truly meet the unprecedented challenges of social justice, income inequities and ecological sustainability.  Our present monetary system continues to aggravate social wellbeing and ecological damage in its very functioning (not its intent); it operates on outdated principles which no longer serve human or ecological needs.

The book is New Money for a New World, by Bernard Lietaer and Stephen Belgin (2012).  The authors write clearly and concisely about this often complex topic.  They are blunt and direct in describing the need to get beyond the present limitations of our national money system.  This book is a joy to read, also, because of the lucid writing style.

Here are some other recent related titles:

Occupy Money: Creating an Economy Where Everybody Wins, by Margrit Kennedy – this 2012 book is a concise (93 small pages), readable introduction to the same topic.

Rethinking Money: How New Currencies Turn Scarcity into Prosperity, by Bernard Lietaer and Jacqui Dunne, 2013

People Money:  The promise of regional currencies, by Margrit Kennedy, Bernard Lietaer and John Rogers, 2012

Creating Wealth: Growing Local Economies with Local Currencies, by Gwendolyn Hallsmith and Bernard Lietaer, 2011


About bbriley42

Retired former engineer and (later) clinical social worker. Married, with two adult children. Long time student of spirituality and "A Course in Miracles." Presently alarmed at how the U.S. economic system, with all of its strengths, is poisoning our society, world economic fairness and the biosphere upon which we rely for physical life itself. I have thus with others in our community formed an economic reform study-advocacy group.
This entry was posted in Complementary Currencies, Economic Systems and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Wonderful Book(s) on Alternative Currencies!

  1. Jay Faulkner says:

    I am not sure changing the currency (I.E. from paper and coins to something else) will change anything. Currency is what people put faith in to have value, a means of exchange.

    • bbriley42 says:

      Hi Jay. Thanks for your comment. Alternative currency doesn’t replace the national currency; it complements it. If you’d read one of the books I listed, such as “New Money for a New World,” you’d understand why complementary currencies are still in use around the world in communities of various sizes and what a huge social and commercial different it has made even in the midst of national depressions. The way in which our current money system works is squeezing the life out of the fairness of our society and the health of our natural environment. Its function of relying so much on interest and debt is the root cause of the flow of wealth upwards to the richest few percent of Americans and away from the many people at the low end of the income and wealth scale. The income maldistribution in the USA is higher than it is in any other large industrial nation.

    • bbriley42 says:

      Hi Jay, I both agree and disagree with your comment. Currency is indeed what people agree has value, but it doesn’t mean that either of the following common assumptions are true: 1) That alternative currencies can’t be implemented when the national currency is unavailable to provide jobs and needed services; or 2) that the Federal Reserve (which is owned by a consortium of giant corporate banks) can’t be “federalized” to enable the federal government to supply the money needed to provide essential services such as education, medical care, green energy, etc. Abe Lincoln used federal money in the Civil War, for example, to fund much of the Union war effort. In all events, I appreciated your very intelligent comments!

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