I have a theory about money in this age of financial services and valueless commodities which is essentially that there is one big pile of money on the table and the people who are in charge of things let you move the pile around. Sometimes it stops in front of you for a bit before you pass the pile on to someone else. If you're lucky a couple of coins fall into your lap for you to keep, but mostly you push the pile to the next person. For a while the memory of the money in front of you keeps you warm and happy, and when that finally burns off you look at whoever the money is in front of right then and wonder why they have it and when it is coming back to you. Your desire to get the money back or your envy of whoever has the money at that moment keeps you from realizing that you are actually seated below a much bigger table, where a much larger pile of money is being passed around, and the money you're playing with is the coins that have fallen down from there. The people who are in charge of your table couldn't even get a seat at the table up top. Up at the larger table they understand that, for the most part, the money is fake and they've only got the use of it for so long, but even they are so captivated by the warm feeling they get from it that the will do anything to stay at that table and keep the people down below from moving up. They know that it is ethereal, that it is based on fakery and willful self-delusion, but they also understand that so long as everyone believes in it they can keep the warmth wrapped around them all the time and even pass it along to their children. Like so many of my theories this idea is simplistic and flawed, but, on the other hand, it is hard to read something like this and convince yourself that we live in a world where things actually make sense.
Wednesday, February 19th, 2014