Discussion:
[ox-en] There IS such a thing as peer money
(too old to reply)
marc fawzi
2008-12-14 23:30:40 UTC
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Patrick Anderson
2008-12-15 00:06:06 UTC
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Marc,

At http://p2pfoundation.net/P2P_Social_Currency_Model#Anti-Dumping_and_Anti-Monopoly_Caps_for_Energy_Production
you say:

"'There may need to be a cap put in place on how much energy a given
party can produce so as not to allow one party or few parties to pump
so much energy into Peer Grid as to bring energy price down for all
other producers.'"

Then, at http://p2pfoundation.net/P2P_Social_Currency_Model#Energy_Price_Regulation
you say (in shortened form):

"'This value of Peer Dollar is regulated relative to the value energy,
so that as energy becomes abundant its price will drop ... while
preventing speculative boom and bust cycles from making the price of
energy ... drop too low (in periods of low demand) as to make energy
production economically unfeasible.'"


Does this mean you are designing a *scarcity* based model?

There is something fundamentally wrong with a strategy that cannot
endure the *abundance* we seek.

Capitalists want prices to keep price above cost, for that is the
definition of profit, but I very much doubt that is a goal of Peer
Production or "self unfolding".


Sincerely,
Patrick
_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
Contact: projekt-***@public.gmane.org
marc fawzi
2008-12-15 00:18:25 UTC
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Patrick,

Thanks for your feedback.

Re: #1, Abundance comes from the whole (from all peers producing energy) not
from ONE peer or ONE group of peers producing so much more energy than
everyone else, i.e. dumping energy into the market for the purpose of
driving down prices and killing off competition.

I will clarify that... I assumed people know what "dumping" is and why it's
bad.

Re: #2, Again, abundance that is not sustainable is NOT abundance. The goal
is to make abundance sustainable. The missing explanation here is that the
cost of producing energy will continue to go down, and so the price of
energy will continue to go down.

I will make this clarification, too.

Thank you much for your feedback, and I hope the above clarification answers
your question in the negative, i.e. the model is designed for sustainable
abundance, not scarcity and not abundance that is not sustainable or that
leads to centralization of power in the hands of the few.
Post by Patrick Anderson
Marc,
At
http://p2pfoundation.net/P2P_Social_Currency_Model#Anti-Dumping_and_Anti-Monopoly_Caps_for_Energy_Production
"'There may need to be a cap put in place on how much energy a given
party can produce so as not to allow one party or few parties to pump
so much energy into Peer Grid as to bring energy price down for all
other producers.'"
Then, at
http://p2pfoundation.net/P2P_Social_Currency_Model#Energy_Price_Regulation
"'This value of Peer Dollar is regulated relative to the value energy,
so that as energy becomes abundant its price will drop ... while
preventing speculative boom and bust cycles from making the price of
energy ... drop too low (in periods of low demand) as to make energy
production economically unfeasible.'"
Does this mean you are designing a *scarcity* based model?
There is something fundamentally wrong with a strategy that cannot
endure the *abundance* we seek.
Capitalists want prices to keep price above cost, for that is the
definition of profit, but I very much doubt that is a goal of Peer
Production or "self unfolding".
Sincerely,
Patrick
_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
[2 text/html]
_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
Contact: projekt-***@public.gmane.org
marc fawzi
2008-12-15 00:42:17 UTC
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Patrick,

I updated the sections you pointed to, so I hope this clarifies the logic
for "sustainable abundance"

'Unsustainable abundance' ultimately leads to scarcity.

So when we design for abundance, we should design for sustainability of
abundance not just abundance.

Thanks,

Marc
Post by marc fawzi
Patrick,
Thanks for your feedback.
Re: #1, Abundance comes from the whole (from all peers producing energy)
not from ONE peer or ONE group of peers producing so much more energy than
everyone else, i.e. dumping energy into the market for the purpose of
driving down prices and killing off competition.
I will clarify that... I assumed people know what "dumping" is and why it's
bad.
Re: #2, Again, abundance that is not sustainable is NOT abundance. The goal
is to make abundance sustainable. The missing explanation here is that the
cost of producing energy will continue to go down, and so the price of
energy will continue to go down.
I will make this clarification, too.
Thank you much for your feedback, and I hope the above clarification
answers your question in the negative, i.e. the model is designed for
sustainable abundance, not scarcity and not abundance that is not
sustainable or that leads to centralization of power in the hands of the
few.
Post by Patrick Anderson
Marc,
At
http://p2pfoundation.net/P2P_Social_Currency_Model#Anti-Dumping_and_Anti-Monopoly_Caps_for_Energy_Production
"'There may need to be a cap put in place on how much energy a given
party can produce so as not to allow one party or few parties to pump
so much energy into Peer Grid as to bring energy price down for all
other producers.'"
Then, at
http://p2pfoundation.net/P2P_Social_Currency_Model#Energy_Price_Regulation
"'This value of Peer Dollar is regulated relative to the value energy,
so that as energy becomes abundant its price will drop ... while
preventing speculative boom and bust cycles from making the price of
energy ... drop too low (in periods of low demand) as to make energy
production economically unfeasible.'"
Does this mean you are designing a *scarcity* based model?
There is something fundamentally wrong with a strategy that cannot
endure the *abundance* we seek.
Capitalists want prices to keep price above cost, for that is the
definition of profit, but I very much doubt that is a goal of Peer
Production or "self unfolding".
Sincerely,
Patrick
_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
[2 text/html]
_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
Contact: projekt-***@public.gmane.org
Michel Bauwens
2008-12-15 08:10:38 UTC
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I would just like to clarify something, about the concept of peer money,
taking into account's Stefan's critique

First of all, I agree with Stefan that peer production should be exclusively
used to moneyless processes involving voluntary contributions and universal
availability of the resulting common value.

In this sense, peer money is contradictory.

However, at present, peer to peer dynamics exist within a broader field
dominated by market (and state) processes, and it is of interest to peer
producers that the context in which it operates is as close as possible to
the non-alienating values of p2p.

Thus it is legimate that it is our wish to move towards a peer-informed
society and context, at least until such time as a presumable fuller p2p
society would exist, in which even lots of physical resources could possible
be produced and distributed in such a way.

I think it is crucial to think about such distinctions, between peer money
and peer-informed money and processes, the latter not being a contradiction
in terms

(however, there remains a theoretical possibility of peer money: if there
were some unconditional way to reward peer producers, with some form of
value that were usable outside the peer production process itself, that
could probably be characterized as peer money?)

So, one of the questions is then, how to reform the market structures?

A crucial aspect of this reform is to reform/transform the monetary system,
to arrive at a peer-informed monetary system. This involves refusing the
built-in infinite growth protocol of existing capitalist money, and using
money and finances with value-sensitive designs.

Otherwise we arrive at the, in my opinion, absurd position of Stefan, which
basically says: until such time as we have a peer to peer society, we are
happy to let capitalist money be, 'because it's all money anyway'.

Such a position is similar as the one saying: fascism and the keynesian
welfare state are all manifestations of bourgeois society, there the same
anyway, so we don't choose one over the other.

No, they are not the same, and neither are the current system producing the
financial meltdown, and alternative value-conscious, peer-informed monetary
systems that have totally different results for social and natural
externalities.

So, in this sense, a project like Marc's called peer money for convenience's
sake, is totally legitimate and important,

Michel
Post by marc fawzi
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Hi Stephan, Michel, Sam, others,
I tend to see Stefan's argument that there is no such thing as "peer money"
is a case of one person's operative reality versus that of another, not a
case of discourse within a globally or locally shared reality.
http://p2pfoundation.net/P2P_Social_Currency_Model
(with simplified arguments and clearer construction)
And here is a particularly interesting endorsement <http://gredit.org> of
the shared reality I'm working within, from a European based group
promoting
Google Credit, a project that is in the running for the Google 10^100 prize
(see Article of the Year Award on right hand side under video). I have no
relation to them and did not know they exist up till a few days ago.
There are many others who have the same operative reality as myself, in
full
or in part, when it comes to the peer money and peer credit.
I'm working on game design that would energetically align people's
operative
realities with my own, i.e. to create a locally shared reality by changing
people's perceptions through imagination.
Iff money, not just peer money, can be derived and used more intelligently,
then there is nothing in my (and other people's) operative reality against
its existence. In fact, it's existence is demanded in such scenario, partly
because of pragmatism (and knowledge of the current maturity of man, or
lack
of) and partly because such new money would enable society to take a
qualitivate step in the right direction.
I hope this enables further discussion.
Regards,
Marc
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Date: Mon, Jun 30, 2008 at 9:57 AM
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Hi list!
Sorry for being so quiet but - as usual - the conference preparation
eats up a lot of my free time / energy.
The following is something I promised Michel to do. It has been
triggered by the use of the term "peer money" which I think is a
contradiction in terms. This is an attempt to give reasons why I think
that money and peer production are generally in contradiction.
Having said that I should also say that they can walk together for
some time but according to germ form theory that is no contradiction
to the contradiction thesis. But one should keep in mind that to use
money for peer production projects is always a twisted approach
because of that contradiction.
The approach below is based on comparing features of money and peer
production. In that it is also a contribution to further define peer
production.
* Structural force vs. volunteering
Money is a structural force used to force your will onto others.
This is exactly what we call buying - though it doesn't sound so
nice. If you would not need to force others to do something (for
you) you don't need to pay them.
Compared to direct force like violence money is a structural force
because it is indirect. As such it needs a societal framework to be
effective at all: Payment makes no sense unless the payee can buy
something himself.
Peer production on the other hand is largely based on volunteering.
Volunteering, however, is the exact opposite of being forced to do
something. Someone volunteers for a task because it is own wish to
do something. In fact the volunteering is a central feature of
Selbstentfaltung.
* Scarcity vs. ampleness
Money is based on scarcity. In fact in a way it encodes scarcity as
a societal concept to a so-called real abstraction. In fact money
which is not scarce in some way simply makes no sense. If I am
allowed to create arbitrary amounts of money at every time why
should I require the money of others at all?
Peer production on the other hand is based on ampleness of the
product. All examples we found so far for peer production are based
on ampleness (which is simpler to have in the digital world). In
fact ampleness of the product is the typical goal of peer production
projects.
* Force needed to keep vs. built-in sustainability
I said that money encodes scarcity as a general principle of
society. However, money being an abstraction is not scarce by itself
- everybody can print more dollars. Thus scarcity must be enforced
by some external means. Typically this is done by the state. In
effect each money system needs a forceful super-structure to keep it
running.
Peer production on the other hand is based on a built-in
sustainability. A peer production project is not based on some
abstract principle but on the need for / want of a perfect solution
for a problem. It needs no external means to keep a peer production
project up. All the power comes from within.
* Abstract vs. concrete
One of the central features of money is that it is abstract. Money
is not related to any concrete thing - which you easily understand
when you look at the global flow of money compared to the global
flow of goods.
Peer production projects on the other hand are always concrete. The
goals are concrete and the effort spent is for concrete reasons.
* Reduction vs. multi-facet perspective
Money is always a reduction - which is in fact the central feature
of an abstraction. The result is that huge bunches of concrete
aspects are projected into a number.
In peer production projects on the other hand a multi-facet
perspective is the rule. Though at some times decisions need to be
made which prefer one possible way over an other possible way these
decisions are made by a complex consideration of many relevant
facets.
* Exchange value orientation vs. use value orientation
You produce because you want to exchange your product for money. The
product itself does not matter to you and it is totally sufficient
to produce relative quality and relative use.
In peer production projects on the other hand the very reason of a
project is producing use value. Why should a peer production exist
at all otherwise?
* Alienation vs. Selbstentfaltung
While money is based on alienation from things and humans peer
production is based on Selbstentfaltung of humans - which is the
opposite of alienation.
* Immorality included vs. no immorality
Money as an alienated principle can be used to to immoral things -
like waging wars. This is something we all know and bemoan more
often than not.
Peer production on the other hand is based on volunteering and
nobody volunteers for goals which s/he finds immoral.
I'll stop here looking forward to responses and further insights.
Grüße
Stefan
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_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
Contact: projekt-***@public.gmane.org
marc fawzi
2008-12-15 18:03:46 UTC
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Stefan Merten
2009-01-04 19:21:15 UTC
Permalink
Hi Michel and all!
Post by Michel Bauwens
I would just like to clarify something, about the concept of peer money,
taking into account's Stefan's critique
First of all, I agree with Stefan that peer production should be exclusively
used to moneyless processes involving voluntary contributions and universal
availability of the resulting common value.
In this sense, peer money is contradictory.
Good that we agree on this :-) .
Post by Michel Bauwens
However, at present, peer to peer dynamics exist within a broader field
dominated by market (and state) processes,
Yes. Because peer production is still in its `expansion step`_.

.. _expansion step: http://www.oekonux.org/texts/GermFormTheory.html#expansion-step-the-germ-form-becomes-an-important-dimension
Post by Michel Bauwens
and it is of interest to peer
producers that the context in which it operates is as close as possible to
the non-alienating values of p2p.
Yes.
Post by Michel Bauwens
Thus it is legimate that it is our wish to move towards a peer-informed
society and context, at least until such time as a presumable fuller p2p
society would exist, in which even lots of physical resources could possible
be produced and distributed in such a way.
I think I understand what you mean by 'peer-informed society' - an
intermediate society between capitalism and a peer production based
society in its `dominance step`_. But is it possible to find a better
wording? May be I'm also just lacking some common English phrase here.

.. _dominance step: http://www.oekonux.org/texts/GermFormTheory.html#dominance-step-the-germ-form-becomes-the-dominant-form

Anyway, this is a very difficult question. Not that this is legitimate
wish - of course such a wish is legitimate. But such a move implies
difficult questions.

Foremost I'd like to ask: What is the goal of such a move(ment)?

I thought a bit about this question and the following possible answers
came to mind - more of course are welcome.

* I would like to live in a *future* peer production based society as
soon as possible and therefore I want to accelerate this historical
movement.

If that is the goal then it is likely but not automatically given
that some intermediary societal change will help. In earlier times
people would have said that we need a revolution for that change -
though in germ form thinking a revolution AFAICS is at best a small
part of the whole change process.

* I would like to benefit from peer production processes *now* as much
as I can and that is why I want to live in such a context as much as
possible.

Then it must be clear what in peer production is beneficial for you
and what can be done to help you to get as much of this benefit as
possible now. Then such an peer-informed context needs to implement
these benefits for you. And you should have an idea of what is
beneficial for you actually.

* I have a nice life now but it is part of my Selbstentfaltung to
think about society and I like the idea of being a obstetrician for
a new society.

In this case an intermediary context makes only sense if it helps
the birth of a new society. However, the time scale doesn't matter
much.

I think that the goal of such a move(ment) is important and implies a
lot. To everyone with that wish: What is your goal?

The question then is how to accomplish such a move(ment). This
question is worth a couple of more too long posts ;-) . However, I
tried to start that discussion with the topic of current limitations
of peer production.
Post by Michel Bauwens
I think it is crucial to think about such distinctions,
Absolutely. Clear concepts - implying clear distinctions - and good
questions are absolutely crucial for a deeper understanding. In that
sense I want to emphasize that it is all but nitpicking to insist on
clear concepts - as I often do ;-) .
Post by Michel Bauwens
between peer money
and peer-informed money and processes, the latter not being a contradiction
in terms
Yes.

But I guess you agree that the current money system co-exists with
peer production. Funnily the same saying Marc used - "don't fix it
unless it's broken" - came to my mind some days ago when I thought
about these things.

For nearly all goals a move towards a peer production based society
IMHO should *improve* the conditions for peer production. And here I
can not see what's wrong with the current money system *for peer
production*. Regardless whether some money trickery would work or not
I'd like to know what problems of *peer production* a reform in the
money system solves.
Post by Michel Bauwens
(however, there remains a theoretical possibility of peer money: if there
were some unconditional way to reward peer producers, with some form of
value that were usable outside the peer production process itself, that
could probably be characterized as peer money?)
You don't need to reward peer producers. They do it because they like
it. They are rewarded by what they do already. We need to be careful
here.

Apart from that I'd say that in this case the meaning of the money
"outside the peer production process" dominates. It makes sense in
this "outside" and thus is clearly a part of it. For the peer
production process itself it is thus also something outside. Therefore
I would not call it peer money.
Post by Michel Bauwens
So, one of the questions is then, how to reform the market structures?
To accomplish what for peer production?
Post by Michel Bauwens
A crucial aspect of this reform is to reform/transform the monetary system,
to arrive at a peer-informed monetary system.
See above. Unless it is shown that the current monetary system is a
problem for peer production processes I do not see the improvement. So
why bother?
Post by Michel Bauwens
This involves refusing the
built-in infinite growth protocol of existing capitalist money, and using
money and finances with value-sensitive designs.
I often argued that in the sentence above the words "existing
capitalist" are superfluous making your whole point absurd. The
essence of money is to be abstracted away from real society and *that*
is the problem you are trying to deal with. You either need to destroy
that abstraction - and then it is no longer money you are talking of -
or accept the same problems - and then it makes no sense.
Post by Michel Bauwens
Otherwise we arrive at the, in my opinion, absurd position of Stefan, which
basically says: until such time as we have a peer to peer society, we are
happy to let capitalist money be, 'because it's all money anyway'.
Well, you know that I would have omitted "capitalist" in the sentence
above which makes it a trivial sentence and not absurd. IMO it's all
about

* What is money?

* Are the characteristics of money we observe inalienable features of
money or can things be changed to result in something different?

I and others argued over and over again that money is based on labor
and abstraction and that the abstraction lives a life of it's own and
*this* is the problem. You seem to deny that. However, I can not
remember one case where you said why. Why?

But see this post for a couple of other points - especially: Where
does peer production benefit from a money reform?
Post by Michel Bauwens
Such a position is similar as the one saying: fascism and the keynesian
welfare state are all manifestations of bourgeois society, there the same
anyway, so we don't choose one over the other.
Well, let me say it this way. I'd be glad if someone would be able to
"fix" the money system - or at least make a money based economy a
safer and more humane place. *But* even if this is possible I can not
see what this has to do with peer production! Not even remotely!

IMO you could equally well argue that everybody has to become a
Christian/Hindu/Moslem/Buddhist/... or wear blue shoes or ... and that
this would help peer production.

Any money reform of the sort you are suggesting all the time is at the
very best an internal change inside the money system.

The only thing I can see why this could be useful for peer production
is that peer production still needs some time to take over. In *this*
sense it would be useful if capitalism / money based systems could
still wait some decades until they finally break. If some money reform
can help here that's great.
Post by Michel Bauwens
No, they are not the same, and neither are the current system producing the
financial meltdown, and alternative value-conscious, peer-informed monetary
systems that have totally different results for social and natural
externalities.
I'm sorry but so far this is pure theory. Or even worse: Where these
models have turned into practice - such as Argentina - they failed
miserably. And for exactly those reasons I'm pointing out all the time
[1]_. The hype about LETS_ also came down during the last few years
and today I think it is clear to everyone that LETS_ are no real
alternative.

.. [1] In Argentina it was foremost the lack of a power monopoly (aka
state) preventing counterfeit money.

.. _LETS: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LETS

Peer production on the other hand emerged as a *practical phenomenon*.
It is not born from some theorists and is growing since 30 years. This
convinces me.

The money trickery stuff you are suggesting is at least a hundred
years old and it is really boring to hear it over and over again.

I can also not think of a single instance where a peer producer
concerned with real production thought about this or even asked for
that type of money reform. Therefore it seems to me that this whole
discussion is completely alienated from real existing peer production.
Post by Michel Bauwens
So, in this sense, a project like Marc's called peer money for convenience's
sake, is totally legitimate and important,
Well, I think Marc's project ignores a lot of important insights and
absolutely resembles the patterns of (capitalist) money. But of course
I might be wrong and in ten years time I can see that

* the model works and

* while being on a large scale avoids the same problems of standard
money.

So go ahead. After all meanwhile there are lots and lots of people
saying very similar things so it should be easy to make a start. I'd
love to see them being successful so we can watch things in practice
instead of discussing things which IMO are at best not thought
through.

In any case I can not see what Marc's project has to do with peer
production. In the contrary: As Patrick found and I emphasized in my
last post Marc's project is obviously opposed to common peer
production practices such as making competition superfluous. So I
guess you'll have a hard time to explain why such a model is helpful
for peer production processes.


Grüße

Stefan
_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
Contact: projekt-***@public.gmane.org
marc fawzi
2009-01-05 01:14:43 UTC
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Michel Bauwens
2009-01-05 14:54:45 UTC
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This is not a good time for me to answer but just a few remarks:

- peer to peer dominance does not mean 'only peer to peer', just as
capitalism has never meant 'only capitalism' ... So, even in a full peer to
peer society, moved by the overall logic of peer to peer dynamics for its
key value creation, there will still be other modes, and therefore, there
will be peer-informed. So this is a operative concept, not just now or in a
transition period, but <always>

- money is abstraction, I agree, but, this abstraction can have different
rules. And human exploitation does not just happen in production, as
Marxists claim, but at the level of distribution and consumption. For
example today, relative little money is creamed off in the production
system, and profits in the manufacturing sector are low, but the financial
system creams of value created by civil society outside of the production
system (see adam arviddson's work on this)

- your claim that other money logics do not work is only the result of your
being un-informed. Read Bernard Lietaer's account of the first medieval
renaissance, read the concrete experience of the Worlg (
http://www.p2pfoundation.net/Worgl_Shillings) or the 70-year success of the
WIR in Switzerland, which has 65,000 B2B members and a proven
counter-cyclical effect on economic crisis (
http://www.p2pfoundation.net/WIR_Economic_Circle_Cooperative).

As for Argentina, the reason it failed is not just in an abstract way that
they used complementary currencies, but that it was in the hand of mafia's
that printed money for their own benefit, and other specific reasons. Like
everything, it can be done well or not, and was has to learn from past
mistakes.
See this report,
http://www.p2pfoundation.net/Argentine_Social_Money_Movement

Stefan, really, have you ever done any real study on the matter? You should
spend if only just a week of your life to do some serious reading on the
issue, and not just issue blanket statements about topics you do not take
the effort to be seriously informed about ..

The reason why we need monetary transformation is simple: peer production is
not dominant, and exists in mutual dependence with the existing economy.
When this existing economy is in tatters, when there are 20% or more
unemployed because of the dysfunctions of a particular financial system,
when the very logic of interest-bearing money forces infinite growth and the
ultimate destruction of the biosphere, you have a vital interest in changing
that. Similarly on a more local scale, if you are embedded in a local region
or economy, and you want to preserve the economy of your locale, you have a
vested interest in having a local complimentary currency system which keeps
more wealth inside that locale.

The better and more just the external physical economy, capitalist or not,
the more peer production can thrive.

I would also recommend that you read up on the importance of invisible
architecture in distributed networks (such as money flow), and of protocally
power (see http://www.p2pfoundation.net/Protocollary_Power). Money is not
just abstraction, but concrete abstraction, and its logic is driven by the
way it's production and circulation is conceived and designed.
Value-sensitive design can be in the interest of a tiny minority, as it was
in the shadow banking system that now collapsed, or it can be in the
interest of the majority.

You probably agree that after the meltdown, new financial regulations are
needed, to prevent a return of the destructive neoliberal ponzi scheme, but
in agreeing on that, you are one step removed from the rules of the money
itself. It's not just what you can do with the money that is important, but
the money itself. Imagine that there is a hidden digital chip in every piece
of money that you use, that unconciously limits your choices and drives you
to a certain behaviour ... Once you realise that this is exactly what
happens, you obviously want to change it.

If peer to peer is your desire, you would want the peer production of what
exactly??, just of free software, expand it to hardware (so far, I think you
agree), but then you inexplicably stop ... oh no, not the peer production of
money, that has to remain the prerogative of private banks ... So, would
you also oppose the peer production of energy, under the logic that 'energy'
is just an abstraction, and therefore it should remain centralized,
polluting, non-renewable?, Or would you rather say, it has to be renewable
(you change it's protocol), and produced everywhere, so that its control
shifts to the whole population, not just centralized capital or state
utilities?

So we have here a post-Marxist that staunchly defends that money should
remain capitalist, force infinite growth, stimulate accumulation of it as a
scarce asset , give political blackmail power to those who have accumulated
it, and force a general short-termism in our behaviour and thinking (it is
not a coincidence, but the actual cause, that cathedrals and pyramids were
built in societies with demurrage-based money).


Michel
Post by Stefan Merten
Hi Michel and all!
Post by Michel Bauwens
I would just like to clarify something, about the concept of peer money,
taking into account's Stefan's critique
First of all, I agree with Stefan that peer production should be
exclusively
Post by Michel Bauwens
used to moneyless processes involving voluntary contributions and
universal
Post by Michel Bauwens
availability of the resulting common value.
In this sense, peer money is contradictory.
Good that we agree on this :-) .
Post by Michel Bauwens
However, at present, peer to peer dynamics exist within a broader field
dominated by market (and state) processes,
Yes. Because peer production is still in its `expansion step`_.
http://www.oekonux.org/texts/GermFormTheory.html#expansion-step-the-germ-form-becomes-an-important-dimension
Post by Michel Bauwens
and it is of interest to peer
producers that the context in which it operates is as close as possible
to
Post by Michel Bauwens
the non-alienating values of p2p.
Yes.
Post by Michel Bauwens
Thus it is legimate that it is our wish to move towards a peer-informed
society and context, at least until such time as a presumable fuller p2p
society would exist, in which even lots of physical resources could
possible
Post by Michel Bauwens
be produced and distributed in such a way.
I think I understand what you mean by 'peer-informed society' - an
intermediate society between capitalism and a peer production based
society in its `dominance step`_. But is it possible to find a better
wording? May be I'm also just lacking some common English phrase here.
http://www.oekonux.org/texts/GermFormTheory.html#dominance-step-the-germ-form-becomes-the-dominant-form
Anyway, this is a very difficult question. Not that this is legitimate
wish - of course such a wish is legitimate. But such a move implies
difficult questions.
Foremost I'd like to ask: What is the goal of such a move(ment)?
I thought a bit about this question and the following possible answers
came to mind - more of course are welcome.
* I would like to live in a *future* peer production based society as
soon as possible and therefore I want to accelerate this historical
movement.
If that is the goal then it is likely but not automatically given
that some intermediary societal change will help. In earlier times
people would have said that we need a revolution for that change -
though in germ form thinking a revolution AFAICS is at best a small
part of the whole change process.
* I would like to benefit from peer production processes *now* as much
as I can and that is why I want to live in such a context as much as
possible.
Then it must be clear what in peer production is beneficial for you
and what can be done to help you to get as much of this benefit as
possible now. Then such an peer-informed context needs to implement
these benefits for you. And you should have an idea of what is
beneficial for you actually.
* I have a nice life now but it is part of my Selbstentfaltung to
think about society and I like the idea of being a obstetrician for
a new society.
In this case an intermediary context makes only sense if it helps
the birth of a new society. However, the time scale doesn't matter
much.
I think that the goal of such a move(ment) is important and implies a
lot. To everyone with that wish: What is your goal?
The question then is how to accomplish such a move(ment). This
question is worth a couple of more too long posts ;-) . However, I
tried to start that discussion with the topic of current limitations
of peer production.
Post by Michel Bauwens
I think it is crucial to think about such distinctions,
Absolutely. Clear concepts - implying clear distinctions - and good
questions are absolutely crucial for a deeper understanding. In that
sense I want to emphasize that it is all but nitpicking to insist on
clear concepts - as I often do ;-) .
Post by Michel Bauwens
between peer money
and peer-informed money and processes, the latter not being a
contradiction
Post by Michel Bauwens
in terms
Yes.
But I guess you agree that the current money system co-exists with
peer production. Funnily the same saying Marc used - "don't fix it
unless it's broken" - came to my mind some days ago when I thought
about these things.
For nearly all goals a move towards a peer production based society
IMHO should *improve* the conditions for peer production. And here I
can not see what's wrong with the current money system *for peer
production*. Regardless whether some money trickery would work or not
I'd like to know what problems of *peer production* a reform in the
money system solves.
Post by Michel Bauwens
(however, there remains a theoretical possibility of peer money: if there
were some unconditional way to reward peer producers, with some form of
value that were usable outside the peer production process itself, that
could probably be characterized as peer money?)
You don't need to reward peer producers. They do it because they like
it. They are rewarded by what they do already. We need to be careful
here.
Apart from that I'd say that in this case the meaning of the money
"outside the peer production process" dominates. It makes sense in
this "outside" and thus is clearly a part of it. For the peer
production process itself it is thus also something outside. Therefore
I would not call it peer money.
Post by Michel Bauwens
So, one of the questions is then, how to reform the market structures?
To accomplish what for peer production?
Post by Michel Bauwens
A crucial aspect of this reform is to reform/transform the monetary
system,
Post by Michel Bauwens
to arrive at a peer-informed monetary system.
See above. Unless it is shown that the current monetary system is a
problem for peer production processes I do not see the improvement. So
why bother?
Post by Michel Bauwens
This involves refusing the
built-in infinite growth protocol of existing capitalist money, and using
money and finances with value-sensitive designs.
I often argued that in the sentence above the words "existing
capitalist" are superfluous making your whole point absurd. The
essence of money is to be abstracted away from real society and *that*
is the problem you are trying to deal with. You either need to destroy
that abstraction - and then it is no longer money you are talking of -
or accept the same problems - and then it makes no sense.
Post by Michel Bauwens
Otherwise we arrive at the, in my opinion, absurd position of Stefan,
which
Post by Michel Bauwens
basically says: until such time as we have a peer to peer society, we are
happy to let capitalist money be, 'because it's all money anyway'.
Well, you know that I would have omitted "capitalist" in the sentence
above which makes it a trivial sentence and not absurd. IMO it's all
about
* What is money?
* Are the characteristics of money we observe inalienable features of
money or can things be changed to result in something different?
I and others argued over and over again that money is based on labor
and abstraction and that the abstraction lives a life of it's own and
*this* is the problem. You seem to deny that. However, I can not
remember one case where you said why. Why?
But see this post for a couple of other points - especially: Where
does peer production benefit from a money reform?
Post by Michel Bauwens
Such a position is similar as the one saying: fascism and the keynesian
welfare state are all manifestations of bourgeois society, there the same
anyway, so we don't choose one over the other.
Well, let me say it this way. I'd be glad if someone would be able to
"fix" the money system - or at least make a money based economy a
safer and more humane place. *But* even if this is possible I can not
see what this has to do with peer production! Not even remotely!
IMO you could equally well argue that everybody has to become a
Christian/Hindu/Moslem/Buddhist/... or wear blue shoes or ... and that
this would help peer production.
Any money reform of the sort you are suggesting all the time is at the
very best an internal change inside the money system.
The only thing I can see why this could be useful for peer production
is that peer production still needs some time to take over. In *this*
sense it would be useful if capitalism / money based systems could
still wait some decades until they finally break. If some money reform
can help here that's great.
Post by Michel Bauwens
No, they are not the same, and neither are the current system producing
the
Post by Michel Bauwens
financial meltdown, and alternative value-conscious, peer-informed
monetary
Post by Michel Bauwens
systems that have totally different results for social and natural
externalities.
I'm sorry but so far this is pure theory. Or even worse: Where these
models have turned into practice - such as Argentina - they failed
miserably. And for exactly those reasons I'm pointing out all the time
[1]_. The hype about LETS_ also came down during the last few years
and today I think it is clear to everyone that LETS_ are no real
alternative.
.. [1] In Argentina it was foremost the lack of a power monopoly (aka
state) preventing counterfeit money.
.. _LETS: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LETS
Peer production on the other hand emerged as a *practical phenomenon*.
It is not born from some theorists and is growing since 30 years. This
convinces me.
The money trickery stuff you are suggesting is at least a hundred
years old and it is really boring to hear it over and over again.
I can also not think of a single instance where a peer producer
concerned with real production thought about this or even asked for
that type of money reform. Therefore it seems to me that this whole
discussion is completely alienated from real existing peer production.
Post by Michel Bauwens
So, in this sense, a project like Marc's called peer money for
convenience's
Post by Michel Bauwens
sake, is totally legitimate and important,
Well, I think Marc's project ignores a lot of important insights and
absolutely resembles the patterns of (capitalist) money. But of course
I might be wrong and in ten years time I can see that
* the model works and
* while being on a large scale avoids the same problems of standard
money.
So go ahead. After all meanwhile there are lots and lots of people
saying very similar things so it should be easy to make a start. I'd
love to see them being successful so we can watch things in practice
instead of discussing things which IMO are at best not thought
through.
In any case I can not see what Marc's project has to do with peer
production. In the contrary: As Patrick found and I emphasized in my
last post Marc's project is obviously opposed to common peer
production practices such as making competition superfluous. So I
guess you'll have a hard time to explain why such a model is helpful
for peer production processes.
Grüße
Stefan
_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
--
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alternatives.

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_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
Contact: projekt-***@public.gmane.org
adam
2009-01-09 15:27:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Stefan Merten
Hi Michel and all!
Post by Michel Bauwens
I would just like to clarify something, about the concept of peer money,
taking into account's Stefan's critique
First of all, I agree with Stefan that peer production should be exclusively
used to moneyless processes involving voluntary contributions and universal
availability of the resulting common value.
In this sense, peer money is contradictory.
Good that we agree on this :-) .
Post by Michel Bauwens
However, at present, peer to peer dynamics exist within a broader field
dominated by market (and state) processes,
Yes. Because peer production is still in its `expansion step`_.
.. _expansion step: http://www.oekonux.org/texts/GermFormTheory.html#expansion-step-the-germ-form-becomes-an-important-dimension
Post by Michel Bauwens
and it is of interest to peer
producers that the context in which it operates is as close as possible to
the non-alienating values of p2p.
Yes.
Post by Michel Bauwens
Thus it is legimate that it is our wish to move towards a peer-informed
society and context, at least until such time as a presumable fuller p2p
society would exist, in which even lots of physical resources could possible
be produced and distributed in such a way.
I think I understand what you mean by 'peer-informed society' - an
intermediate society between capitalism and a peer production based
society in its `dominance step`_. But is it possible to find a better
wording? May be I'm also just lacking some common English phrase here.
i don't think it's a phrase you're lacking, i think it's just one word
Post by Stefan Merten
.. _dominance step: http://www.oekonux.org/texts/GermFormTheory.html#dominance-step-the-germ-form-becomes-the-dominant-form
Anyway, this is a very difficult question. Not that this is legitimate
wish - of course such a wish is legitimate. But such a move implies
difficult questions.
Foremost I'd like to ask: What is the goal of such a move(ment)?
I thought a bit about this question and the following possible answers
came to mind - more of course are welcome.
* I would like to live in a *future* peer production based society as
soon as possible and therefore I want to accelerate this historical
movement.
If that is the goal then it is likely but not automatically given
that some intermediary societal change will help. In earlier times
people would have said that we need a revolution for that change -
though in germ form thinking a revolution AFAICS is at best a small
part of the whole change process.
* I would like to benefit from peer production processes *now* as much
as I can and that is why I want to live in such a context as much as
possible.
Then it must be clear what in peer production is beneficial for you
and what can be done to help you to get as much of this benefit as
possible now. Then such an peer-informed context needs to implement
these benefits for you. And you should have an idea of what is
beneficial for you actually.
* I have a nice life now but it is part of my Selbstentfaltung to
think about society and I like the idea of being a obstetrician for
a new society.
In this case an intermediary context makes only sense if it helps
the birth of a new society. However, the time scale doesn't matter
much.
I think that the goal of such a move(ment) is important and implies a
lot. To everyone with that wish: What is your goal?
The question then is how to accomplish such a move(ment). This
question is worth a couple of more too long posts ;-) . However, I
tried to start that discussion with the topic of current limitations
of peer production.
Post by Michel Bauwens
I think it is crucial to think about such distinctions,
Absolutely. Clear concepts - implying clear distinctions - and good
questions are absolutely crucial for a deeper understanding. In that
sense I want to emphasize that it is all but nitpicking to insist on
clear concepts - as I often do ;-) .
Post by Michel Bauwens
between peer money
and peer-informed money and processes, the latter not being a contradiction
in terms
Yes.
But I guess you agree that the current money system co-exists with
peer production. Funnily the same saying Marc used - "don't fix it
unless it's broken" - came to my mind some days ago when I thought
about these things.
For nearly all goals a move towards a peer production based society
IMHO should *improve* the conditions for peer production. And here I
can not see what's wrong with the current money system *for peer
production*. Regardless whether some money trickery would work or not
I'd like to know what problems of *peer production* a reform in the
money system solves.
Post by Michel Bauwens
(however, there remains a theoretical possibility of peer money: if there
were some unconditional way to reward peer producers, with some form of
value that were usable outside the peer production process itself, that
could probably be characterized as peer money?)
You don't need to reward peer producers. They do it because they like
it. They are rewarded by what they do already. We need to be careful
here.
i agree, one never really knows why folk do the stuff they do, but i
agree, most folk tend to do stuff, because they like it, like eating a
chocolate bar or smoking, or indeed, exchanging these habits of instant
gratification to longer term others, like hoarding one's pennies in the
bottom drawer for instance, or spending a few to attend a conference
with bright and interesting people may be, but i agree, we need to be
careful here, but do you know what, i think we have been, in fact i'd go
further, i think we've acted responsibly, and this just might stand us
in good stead


the current money system is not just broken, it is fubar -- the next
bit of money trickery awaiting in the wings is being giving the
grandiose title of 'quantitative easing', and has little to do with
aiding and abetting peer production, and has more to do with giving the
failed banks not just the right to write off their billions of bad bets,
but also the right to write a new, very large number on to their balance
sheets, so they can try and start the whole process again ... this is
not responsible, it is like letting a mental patient out the door to
play, after they've handed you their release note, written in a wax crayon


'change' is a word also -- as a word, it can be used to win elections,
it does have meaning also


oekonux, p2p, etc., have been responsible for pointing to, analysing,
advertising and categorising examples of an extant and growing economy,
which is hoped may one day replace the current money based one ... they
have been responsible for presenting and instilling faith in a form of
economy alternative to capital ... they have been responsible for
offering folk a route to meaningful world wide change ... to my
knowledge this alternative is not being offered, or even thought off by
any elected politician ... if it is, they are keeping it well hidden


i have other responsibilities, for instance, i don't presently have 300
squid or euros to my name, and things such as food and heating will no
doubt be getting much scarcer around here for the vast majority unless
someone comes up with a better plan than letting the fuel companies do
as they wish, and turning the printing press at the treasury up to over
drive ... do you know, you can't eat money, you can try, but it doesn't
taste very nice ... you can eat wild life though, if you can catch it, i
was saying the same thing to one of us work colleagues the other day,
and they replied, if i intended to survive that way, i may have a lot of
competition, given that we are probably something like 8,000 year past
peak wild life ... i laughed, if only because it made a change to talk
about something other than peak oil


whoops, i'm out of time, so will leave this one here for the moment, btw
'responsibility' was the word i was thinking off, as in 'having
responsibility', 'being in responsibility', 'taking responsibility', etc

-- adam
Post by Stefan Merten
Apart from that I'd say that in this case the meaning of the money
"outside the peer production process" dominates. It makes sense in
this "outside" and thus is clearly a part of it. For the peer
production process itself it is thus also something outside. Therefore
I would not call it peer money.
Post by Michel Bauwens
So, one of the questions is then, how to reform the market structures?
To accomplish what for peer production?
Post by Michel Bauwens
A crucial aspect of this reform is to reform/transform the monetary system,
to arrive at a peer-informed monetary system.
See above. Unless it is shown that the current monetary system is a
problem for peer production processes I do not see the improvement. So
why bother?
Post by Michel Bauwens
This involves refusing the
built-in infinite growth protocol of existing capitalist money, and using
money and finances with value-sensitive designs.
I often argued that in the sentence above the words "existing
capitalist" are superfluous making your whole point absurd. The
essence of money is to be abstracted away from real society and *that*
is the problem you are trying to deal with. You either need to destroy
that abstraction - and then it is no longer money you are talking of -
or accept the same problems - and then it makes no sense.
Post by Michel Bauwens
Otherwise we arrive at the, in my opinion, absurd position of Stefan, which
basically says: until such time as we have a peer to peer society, we are
happy to let capitalist money be, 'because it's all money anyway'.
Well, you know that I would have omitted "capitalist" in the sentence
above which makes it a trivial sentence and not absurd. IMO it's all
about
* What is money?
* Are the characteristics of money we observe inalienable features of
money or can things be changed to result in something different?
I and others argued over and over again that money is based on labor
and abstraction and that the abstraction lives a life of it's own and
*this* is the problem. You seem to deny that. However, I can not
remember one case where you said why. Why?
But see this post for a couple of other points - especially: Where
does peer production benefit from a money reform?
Post by Michel Bauwens
Such a position is similar as the one saying: fascism and the keynesian
welfare state are all manifestations of bourgeois society, there the same
anyway, so we don't choose one over the other.
Well, let me say it this way. I'd be glad if someone would be able to
"fix" the money system - or at least make a money based economy a
safer and more humane place. *But* even if this is possible I can not
see what this has to do with peer production! Not even remotely!
IMO you could equally well argue that everybody has to become a
Christian/Hindu/Moslem/Buddhist/... or wear blue shoes or ... and that
this would help peer production.
Any money reform of the sort you are suggesting all the time is at the
very best an internal change inside the money system.
The only thing I can see why this could be useful for peer production
is that peer production still needs some time to take over. In *this*
sense it would be useful if capitalism / money based systems could
still wait some decades until they finally break. If some money reform
can help here that's great.
Post by Michel Bauwens
No, they are not the same, and neither are the current system producing the
financial meltdown, and alternative value-conscious, peer-informed monetary
systems that have totally different results for social and natural
externalities.
I'm sorry but so far this is pure theory. Or even worse: Where these
models have turned into practice - such as Argentina - they failed
miserably. And for exactly those reasons I'm pointing out all the time
[1]_. The hype about LETS_ also came down during the last few years
and today I think it is clear to everyone that LETS_ are no real
alternative.
.. [1] In Argentina it was foremost the lack of a power monopoly (aka
state) preventing counterfeit money.
.. _LETS: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LETS
Peer production on the other hand emerged as a *practical phenomenon*.
It is not born from some theorists and is growing since 30 years. This
convinces me.
The money trickery stuff you are suggesting is at least a hundred
years old and it is really boring to hear it over and over again.
I can also not think of a single instance where a peer producer
concerned with real production thought about this or even asked for
that type of money reform. Therefore it seems to me that this whole
discussion is completely alienated from real existing peer production.
Post by Michel Bauwens
So, in this sense, a project like Marc's called peer money for convenience's
sake, is totally legitimate and important,
Well, I think Marc's project ignores a lot of important insights and
absolutely resembles the patterns of (capitalist) money. But of course
I might be wrong and in ten years time I can see that
* the model works and
* while being on a large scale avoids the same problems of standard
money.
So go ahead. After all meanwhile there are lots and lots of people
saying very similar things so it should be easy to make a start. I'd
love to see them being successful so we can watch things in practice
instead of discussing things which IMO are at best not thought
through.
In any case I can not see what Marc's project has to do with peer
production. In the contrary: As Patrick found and I emphasized in my
last post Marc's project is obviously opposed to common peer
production practices such as making competition superfluous. So I
guess you'll have a hard time to explain why such a model is helpful
for peer production processes.
Grüße
Stefan
_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
Contact: projekt-***@public.gmane.org

Stefan Merten
2009-01-04 15:24:50 UTC
Permalink
Hi Marc!
Post by marc fawzi
[Converted from multipart/alternative]
BTW: It seems to me that the newlines in your post get lost somehow.
May be this is a bug in the converter used to sanitize
multipart/alternative mails for the list. In general it's better to
send plain text only mails here.
Post by marc fawzi
http://p2pfoundation.net/P2P_Social_Currency_Model
Thanks for structuring this so clearly. It made it easy for me to scan
a few important things.
Post by marc fawzi
Premise
Money is one of the fundamental elements of today's society.
Yes. In fact it structures today's societies more than anything else.
Post by marc fawzi
Changing what money is and how it works will fundamentally change society.
Yes. But since money *as such* structures society change only takes
place when money becomes irrelevant.
Post by marc fawzi
Motivation
[...]
Post by marc fawzi
Prior to the collapse, very few people questioned the design of the economy.
I was among them ;-) . In fact that collapse has not only been
foreseen since the 1990's by some thinkers but even explained why it
ultimately had to happen. *And* why there is no chance to remedy the
reasons for this [1]_. However, I guess most of this material is only
available in German.

.. [1] In fact I find it striking how contemporary "analysises" of
this crash just scratch at the surface. So far I heard nobody
who were able to really explain what happened recently. In fact
greed and the things usually used as an "explanation" existed
throughout capitalism (and before) and thus they are hardly an
explanation for what happened.

The real explanation is of course that the valorization of
labor works worse and worse. That is why the financial system
became more and more important. And in fact there is no reason
to assume that this can be remedied somehow without giving up
capitalism.
Post by marc fawzi
Model's Context
[...]
Post by marc fawzi
The P2P *Energy* Economy adds the requirement that individual peers
must be able to generate their own energy as well as be able to sell
their excess energy to other peers, using a distributed electric
grid (reference: P2P Energy Production.)
Ah, then I understand why you put the label "P2P" on your model.
However, I can not see why in a peer production based society everyone
must be able to generate his/her own energy not talking of the
possibility of *selling* excess energy.

Unfortunately you didn't give a source so I don't know who made the
point.

Is there another reason why you use the label "P2P"? I'm asking
because I worry that the term P2P becomes meaningless if it is put on
everything.
Post by marc fawzi
Model's Axioms
Axioms
The following are non-universal axioms (i.e. starting truths for this model)
1. Money, as defined here, is a tokenizer of energy and information,
and as such it carries both energy and information in every token.
I can't see this is a money definition which makes sense. Money is
foremost a social relationship and in your definition there is no
sociality included. In particular human efforts are missing.
Post by marc fawzi
2. Money, as defined here, does not grow in value on its own, i.e.
cannot derive value from itself over time, i.e. 'interest' is not
possible.
No money I know of does this. If that would be the case for the money
in my pocket then I'd kindly ask you for the recipe ;-) .

However,

* the use of money by buying and applying

* means of production and

* (abstract) labor power and

* selling the resulting products

results in surplus value. Interest is only a derived form of surplus
value.

Also you are putting lots of today's left-wing Western moral in your
axioms. This makes it hard for other people to accept and therefore
this seems to me a reason your why model is doomed to fail.

Apart from that: If you replace (renewable) energy by standard labor /
money then I'd say your axioms are simply given in today's societies.
Then the question comes up why your model should be any better.
Post by marc fawzi
Iff money, not just peer money, can be derived and used more
intelligently, then there is nothing in my (and other people's)
operative reality against its existence.
Hah! I respond with an axiom:

* Money systems have the inherent tendency to become the "invisible
hand" meaning they follow their own logic. Therefore they can not be
"used more intelligently".

Just kidding. Of course this is not an axiom but the result of an
analysis of a money based system namely capitalism. In fact there are
hardly any axioms in social sciences (though there are also very few
in mathematics).
Post by marc fawzi
Patrick,
Thanks for your feedback.
I think Patrick's observations are very good and he really put the
finger on your weak spot. Your reply shows that in fact your model has
exactly the same problems as capitalism.
Post by marc fawzi
Re: #1, Abundance comes from the whole (from all peers producing energy) not
from ONE peer or ONE group of peers producing so much more energy than
everyone else, i.e. dumping energy into the market for the purpose of
driving down prices and killing off competition.
Indeed it would be *great* if a single peer would be able and willing
to supply all the energy needed on earth. Nobody else would need to
care anymore. I for one am glad that the Linux kernel developers care
for the kernel the best they can. A single energy provider would be a
very concrete use value and indeed something I'd strive for.

It is your system that demands that what would be the best thing in
concrete terms must not happen for the sake of the system. This is
because your system builds an abstraction - called money - which
immediately starts a life on its own preventing useful things to
happen.

If you look carefully it is exactly this own life of the abstraction
Post by marc fawzi
We have just watched our monetary system take a dive from the 110th
floor (see: global economic meltdown 2008)
In your observation you are right to assume that this was not the
result of any human intention but instead a "move" of a system living
its own life while ruling us. The problem is the abstraction and its
own life *as such*.


Grüße

Stefan
_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
Contact: projekt-***@public.gmane.org
marc fawzi
2009-01-04 22:23:55 UTC
Permalink
Hi Stefan,

<<
Post by Stefan Merten
Is there another reason why you use the label "P2P"? I'm asking
because I worry that the term P2P becomes meaningless if it is put on
everything.
Besides P2P energy production, which is integral to the model, every
peer is both a producer (or seller) and a consumer of goods and
services and all transactions involving goods and services (and
appreciable assets) happen in peer-to-peer fashion.

To clarify, all buy/sell transactions are direct peer-to-peer (except
for energy which goes thru P2P Bank only because doing it in a
decentralized fashion means a rather large upfront investment on my
part in the design of a bilevel optimization model that does what
predictive inventory management and multi-source supplier scheduling
do, i.e. minimize energy deficit/surplus inequalities between peers on
dynamic basis and minimize dependence on certain peers or peer types.

So making the model fully decentralized may happen eventually but the
key thing is that P2P Bank is a peer-driven process that sits in the
P2P client itself and is a distributed, edge-driven process with only
a virtual process at the center. Making the virtual process
decentralized when it's already fully driven and supported
functionally by the peers and void of any human intervention means
that we just want to make things harder for the sake of some faint
semantic argument that says that a model is not P2P unless it's both
physically and virtually decentralized, which I find to be a great
waste of brain power to even think about. It suffice it that the model
is physically decentralized and only virtually centralized in the
bilevel optimization (which is dependent on peers in every way for its
functioning)
<<
Post by Stefan Merten
Post by marc fawzi
2. Money, as defined here, does not grow in value on its own, i.e.
cannot derive value from itself over time, i.e. 'interest' is not
possible.
No money I know of does this. If that would be the case for the money
in my pocket then I'd kindly ask you for the recipe ;-) .
Updated: "2. Money, as defined here, does not grow in value on its
own, i.e. cannot derive value from itself over time (e.g. by sitting
in a bank or being loaned to others.) In other words, 'interest' is
not possible for the type of money defined under this model."

In constructing a theory or any axiomatic intelligence (e.g. in
software) you start with a set of axioms (most likely non-universal,
logically speaking) and you define your rules of inference and
propositions such that your propositions are logically provable based
on _your_ axioms and rules of inference.

Arguing the model's axioms outside the model itself is meaningless
since the model will work as long as the propositions are provable per
the model's axioms and set of rules. What you mean to argue is not
whether or not the model will work logically but whether or not it
will do the right thing according to whatever is "right" in your own
mind.

I don't generally argue subjective choices of right and wrong.


<<
Post by Stefan Merten
Also you are putting lots of today's left-wing Western moral in your
axioms. This makes it hard for other people to accept and therefore
this seems to me a reason your why model is doomed to fail.
The potential for failure is not decided by subjective argument, but
if you have a non-computable judgment to make and that judgment is
that the model will fail then I will take that as your own judgment,
which seems to me more subjective than non-computable, i.e. not a wise
judgment, IMO, not having talked to me in full about the model and
what I intend to accomplish with it.
Post by Stefan Merten
Post by marc fawzi
Iff money, not just peer money, can be derived and used more
intelligently, then there is nothing in my (and other people's)
operative reality against its existence.
* Money systems have the inherent tendency to become the "invisible
hand" meaning they follow their own logic. Therefore they can not be
"used more intelligently".
Just kidding. Of course this is not an axiom but the result of an
analysis of a money based system namely capitalism. In fact there are
hardly any axioms in social sciences (though there are also very few
in mathematics).
I think I might have to bold the "non-universal" qualifier before the
word "axiom" since people here, even comp sci people, seem to have
little experience with the construction of axiomatic intelligence.
Post by Stefan Merten
Indeed it would be *great* if a single peer would be able and willing
to supply all the energy needed on earth. Nobody else would need to
care anymore. I for one am glad that the Linux kernel developers care
for the kernel the best they can. A single energy provider would be a
very concrete use value and indeed something I'd strive for.
WOW.

Single source dependence.

By your argument, why not have us all depend on one person to decide
the fate of the universe?

Dependence of a single person or a single group of people/companies or
a single industry or even a single model is what causes total failure.
_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
Contact: projekt-***@public.gmane.org
Michel Bauwens
2009-01-05 17:26:03 UTC
Permalink
[Converted from multipart/alternative]

[1 text/plain]
concerning p2p in the p2p social currency model

- to the degree that individuals can freely generate and give energy, and
take the energy that they need, then this system is p2p as defined by our
p2p theory

- to the degree that this grid is run by measured exchange, it's a market
system, that is distributed (and in that sense 'p2p', but not in our full
sense) instead of centralized

so if it is the latter, what's p2p about it, it the distributed nature of
the organization, but nothing else

of course, it is a legitimate effort to seek an alternative market mechanism
that internalizes the cost of energy expenditure and that precludes over-use
of natural resources


Michel
Post by Stefan Merten
Hi Marc!
Post by marc fawzi
[Converted from multipart/alternative]
BTW: It seems to me that the newlines in your post get lost somehow.
May be this is a bug in the converter used to sanitize
multipart/alternative mails for the list. In general it's better to
send plain text only mails here.
Post by marc fawzi
http://p2pfoundation.net/P2P_Social_Currency_Model
Thanks for structuring this so clearly. It made it easy for me to scan
a few important things.
Post by marc fawzi
Premise
Money is one of the fundamental elements of today's society.
Yes. In fact it structures today's societies more than anything else.
Post by marc fawzi
Changing what money is and how it works will fundamentally change
society.
Yes. But since money *as such* structures society change only takes
place when money becomes irrelevant.
Post by marc fawzi
Motivation
[...]
Post by marc fawzi
Prior to the collapse, very few people questioned the design of the
economy.
I was among them ;-) . In fact that collapse has not only been
foreseen since the 1990's by some thinkers but even explained why it
ultimately had to happen. *And* why there is no chance to remedy the
reasons for this [1]_. However, I guess most of this material is only
available in German.
.. [1] In fact I find it striking how contemporary "analysises" of
this crash just scratch at the surface. So far I heard nobody
who were able to really explain what happened recently. In fact
greed and the things usually used as an "explanation" existed
throughout capitalism (and before) and thus they are hardly an
explanation for what happened.
The real explanation is of course that the valorization of
labor works worse and worse. That is why the financial system
became more and more important. And in fact there is no reason
to assume that this can be remedied somehow without giving up
capitalism.
Post by marc fawzi
Model's Context
[...]
Post by marc fawzi
The P2P *Energy* Economy adds the requirement that individual peers
must be able to generate their own energy as well as be able to sell
their excess energy to other peers, using a distributed electric
grid (reference: P2P Energy Production.)
Ah, then I understand why you put the label "P2P" on your model.
However, I can not see why in a peer production based society everyone
must be able to generate his/her own energy not talking of the
possibility of *selling* excess energy.
Unfortunately you didn't give a source so I don't know who made the
point.
Is there another reason why you use the label "P2P"? I'm asking
because I worry that the term P2P becomes meaningless if it is put on
everything.
Post by marc fawzi
Model's Axioms
Axioms
The following are non-universal axioms (i.e. starting truths for this
model)
Post by marc fawzi
1. Money, as defined here, is a tokenizer of energy and information,
and as such it carries both energy and information in every token.
I can't see this is a money definition which makes sense. Money is
foremost a social relationship and in your definition there is no
sociality included. In particular human efforts are missing.
Post by marc fawzi
2. Money, as defined here, does not grow in value on its own, i.e.
cannot derive value from itself over time, i.e. 'interest' is not
possible.
No money I know of does this. If that would be the case for the money
in my pocket then I'd kindly ask you for the recipe ;-) .
However,
* the use of money by buying and applying
* means of production and
* (abstract) labor power and
* selling the resulting products
results in surplus value. Interest is only a derived form of surplus
value.
Also you are putting lots of today's left-wing Western moral in your
axioms. This makes it hard for other people to accept and therefore
this seems to me a reason your why model is doomed to fail.
Apart from that: If you replace (renewable) energy by standard labor /
money then I'd say your axioms are simply given in today's societies.
Then the question comes up why your model should be any better.
Post by marc fawzi
Iff money, not just peer money, can be derived and used more
intelligently, then there is nothing in my (and other people's)
operative reality against its existence.
* Money systems have the inherent tendency to become the "invisible
hand" meaning they follow their own logic. Therefore they can not be
"used more intelligently".
Just kidding. Of course this is not an axiom but the result of an
analysis of a money based system namely capitalism. In fact there are
hardly any axioms in social sciences (though there are also very few
in mathematics).
Post by marc fawzi
Patrick,
Thanks for your feedback.
I think Patrick's observations are very good and he really put the
finger on your weak spot. Your reply shows that in fact your model has
exactly the same problems as capitalism.
Post by marc fawzi
Re: #1, Abundance comes from the whole (from all peers producing energy)
not
Post by marc fawzi
from ONE peer or ONE group of peers producing so much more energy than
everyone else, i.e. dumping energy into the market for the purpose of
driving down prices and killing off competition.
Indeed it would be *great* if a single peer would be able and willing
to supply all the energy needed on earth. Nobody else would need to
care anymore. I for one am glad that the Linux kernel developers care
for the kernel the best they can. A single energy provider would be a
very concrete use value and indeed something I'd strive for.
It is your system that demands that what would be the best thing in
concrete terms must not happen for the sake of the system. This is
because your system builds an abstraction - called money - which
immediately starts a life on its own preventing useful things to
happen.
If you look carefully it is exactly this own life of the abstraction
Post by marc fawzi
We have just watched our monetary system take a dive from the 110th
floor (see: global economic meltdown 2008)
In your observation you are right to assume that this was not the
result of any human intention but instead a "move" of a system living
its own life while ruling us. The problem is the abstraction and its
own life *as such*.
Grüße
Stefan
_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
Organization: http://www.oekonux.de/projekt/
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_________________________________
Web-Site: http://www.oekonux.org/
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Contact: projekt-***@public.gmane.org
marc fawzi
2009-01-05 19:59:18 UTC
Permalink
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