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Food and the Purpose of Money

Touch the Soil News #640

What is the purpose of money? Recently over 140 civil groups in the European Union have called for dramatic reform of food and farming. The groups have sent an open letter to EU leaders who are meeting to discuss the future of food and farming in the European Union.

The claim of the 140 signatories to the letter are quite direct: European Union Farm policies (which include farm subsidies) are working for the interests of a few to the detriment of the majority of people, farmers and the planet. The 140 civil groups are requesting:

  1. Creating fair and diverse farm economies along with fair incomes for farmers.
  2. Fostering healthy environmental and animal welfare standards.
  3. Ensuring citizens’ health and well-being to include making food more readily available, affordable and reduce consumption of highly processed foods.
  4. Make food and farming more democratic by reducing the influence wielded by major corporations and creating greater transparency in decision making to include local decisions about their farmed environment.

What is the purpose of money? While economists say it is to serve as a medium of exchange, that purpose is certainly not the primary purpose of money. In the U.S., for example, the investment world is $100 trillion in size. That is $100 trillion worth of investments looking for a return – often via big corporations. In short, the primary purpose of money is to serve as a tool of wealth extraction.

The recent protests in the EU over farm and food policy are but one example of a world protesting that money should serve people and not vice versa. But, how do you ever get money to serve the mass of people? The collision between people and money is nowhere more apparent than in the food chain. Is the global “hip” trend to growing your own driven by money serving as a medium of investment over a medium of exchange? Is the financial system pushing people to re-invent economics from the ground up – literally grow your own?

The following video clip on poverty in the EU has striking similarities to poverty in the U.S.

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