Value is something humans cherish and is the cornerstone of all our economic and technological progression. However, when you hear about things like occupy wall street or idealistic quotations like, “money is the root of all evil” you may start to wonder about the value of value but anyone who believes money is the root of all evil has a fundamental misunderstanding of what money is, why it came into being, and why it gave us an incredible amount of freedom.
Imagine you wanted to obtain a chicken, and didn’t have money, how would you obtain it? The answer is simple, trade. So you go to a farmer and tell him you will work for him for a week for a chicken, excellent. Next you need shoes, so you go to a shoe maker; the only problem is he doesn’t want your help. So instead you ask him what he wants for shoes and he tells you a robe. So now you either need to make a robe, steal a robe, or trade for a robe. You could potentially do this to obtain everything you needed but the only problem is you would have very little time to do very much else and you would never really be able to master anything. Even if you did become a trade master of making shoes, there is no guarantee you would be able to find someone who would be willing to trade you for what you need for shoes and heaven forbid there is another shoe maker in town.
Money acts a medium and allows you to transfer any type of work you can do into almost anything. You can do one job, like making shoes, and then use currency as a way of obtaining food, tvs, or clothes and you don’t need to figure out exactly who needs what; this is the value of money. Unfortunately what money also allows for is the easy transfer of work into things like weapons, drugs, and war. However, it must be noted that even if money didn’t exist you would still be able to trade to accomplish the same tasks, but money makes everything easier both good and evil. The root of all evil is not money, it is want, and want is a human trait. Blaming created things such as money or even religion for evil is a way of masking the real problem, human imperfection.
This all said, we must not rule out the potential possibility for other means of value transfer and trade. Currently our best method is the use of currency, but that is not to say that as technology improves we might figure out a new method that puts our current system into the dark ages.