Five links full of thoughts the lovely, horrible stuff, on a day where you’re almost certainly worrying about how much of it you’ve got and how much life it might be able to buy you (if you’re like me, this is true literally every day of the week):
  1. What the fuck is money? Who makes it? It’s the government, yeah? Or maybe the banks. This episode of the Kraken podcast makes for a cheerful introduction to this topic, and if you’re left wishing that they got a bit more into the question of what they’d do for money, well, there’s a whole big world of people wanking for coins out there for you to concern yourself with.
  2. If you’d plashing up to the deep end, the New Economics Foundation have put together a report on the prospects for an independent Scotland creating its own digital currency, the “ScoutPound”.  The NEF argue that if £250 worth of it were issued to every Scottish citizen, it would boost the spending power of the poorest and boost business.  Critics in the comments argue that the administration of this would be more difficult than presented and/or that it’s all just an New World Order plot, but then again these criticisms are generally applied to almost anything that’s “proposed” on the internet these days, so…
  3. If you need to wash the taste of BitCoin out of your mouth after reading that, here’s a post on Basic Income (also known as giving people enough money to ensure that they won’t die of poverty) that takes issue with some of its technolibertarian supporters, and another that casts a sceptical eye on some of cryptocurrency driven Basic income proposals. I’m a big advocate of Basic Income as an idea, so it’s good to read critiques like this – shout outs to Charlie Stross for the links!
  4. Bringing it back down to Earth for a minute, here’s a news article on the Govanhill pound, a local currency that has been created by a community artist at the Govanhill Baths, just round the corner from my old house.  The exchange rate for the Govanhill Pound is variable, with the suggestion being that it amounts to “a hundredth of a person’s weekly income”.  If you were going to make a joke about artists needing to print their own money don’t bother unless you’re going to wince when you say it.
  5. Finally, in case you were wondering where all the comics chat went, here’s a link to my post on Eddie Campbell’s book about money, the title of which I stole earlier in the post. Every other comics critic I’ve discussed The Lovely Horrible Stuff with has told me that they think it’s good, but slight – I reckon they’ve just not realised that it’s a dapper bit of bunting that’s been hung around a gaping, cyclopean abyss…

Franco “Bifo” Berardi – The Uprising: On Poetry and Finance

More thoughts on time and money, after the cut!


For Christmas this year I was given the prospect of impending joblessness, a gift that has a fine Dickensian heritage, though unfortunately it’s not Dickens but Shakespeare who has a cameo in the comic at hand:

You don’t need a Shakespearean imagination to understand that redundancy is not the sort of gift I’ve always dreamed of receiving, or to appreciate that it’s not the sort of unwanted gift that you can easily pass on to an unsuspecting relative…

Not that I’m so lacking in compassion for others that I’d *want* to inflict that on anyone else. Even in this post-Monneygeddon age, there’s a limit to what I’m willing to admit in public!

A few weeks ago an alternative version of this present drifted into view, a hot air balloon that looked like it might be capable of taking me somewhere:

Click here to find out exactly where that cheeky chappy there thinks he’s going to take you!