Only our limited idea of money is keeping us poor. David Boyle introduces us to alternative cash and people who can conjure money – that is, spending power – out of nothing.
Until recently, the growth of alternative cash had been the province of big business: phone cards, stamps, air miles and Tesco’s clubcard points all have purchasing power, yet are not cash as we know it. Now, locally created money systems like ‘time dollars’, ‘Womanshare’ and ‘Ithaca hours’ are being invented by communities for communities.
With clarity and great humour, Boyle tells the story of this extraordinary revolution: he travels to the USA to visit the people behind local money systems; relates their vision of the future; and describes how to set up your own currency. This is no dry theoretical tome: Boyle writes about his subject in a way that is concrete, illuminating, often very funny and always highly readable.
This 2000 paperback edition includes a new epilogue with an update on the latest alternative currency ideas: ‘You just have to cast doubt on the real existence of the money markets and they could just shrivel away. Anything could happen.’
A revolution is underway now: this book tells the story of its leaders and the ideas that inspired them.