Privately Public Money

Distinguishing the letter “a” from its verbal sound would prevent this visual representation of that word. Likewise, distinguishing a banknote from its exchange value as money would prevent this concrete representation of that value.

The resulting indiscrimination between a representing entity and what it represents must happen to all representations of something dependent on them by something independent from them. Indeed, the letter “a” does not depend on its dependent word, or a banknote on its dependent trade value as money. Likewise, bank accounts do not depend on their dependent balance, nor precious metals on their dependent buying power. Anything that depends on being represented by something independent from representing it becomes indistinguishable from that representing entity.

Additionally, only by being concrete can objects remain independent from what they represent, which they always do. Hence, each alphabet letter, banknote, precious metal, bank account, or other self-independent representation, even if just imagined, must be concretely objective. While conversely, because money depends on its own representation, all its concrete representations must remain indistinguishable from their monetary value, despite this value and those representations being always respectively private and public.

So letting money concretely represent its own exchange value is inherently problematic: the resulting indistinction between this concrete money and that privately owned value must privatize its otherwise public representation of the same value. Consequently, all such purely objective representations of money will require an impossibly privatized control of their still necessarily public, unsellable selves, whether by their private owners publicly selling, buying, creating, or destroying them.

Even so, Joe still privately controls the exchange value of his always public banknotes. Indeed, people have long expressed that value concretely, with not only banknotes but also countless other objects, including precious metals and bank accounts. Yet how could they do it? How did they solve the ownership conflict inherent in any such privately public representations of money? How could each concrete representation of money be both private and public? The solution was to delegate its privatized ownership to a public monetary authority.

People had no other choice: any privatized ownership of a still necessarily public entity can only consist in the privatizing delegation of its public ownership. Then, all resulting delegates will constitute one same body administering or governing this public entity: the state or government, part of which must privately control any object that concretely represents money.

However, the private and public ownerships of one same thing are still mutually exclusive. Hence, the public authority that results from privately controlling all concrete representations of money must rather be private. Eventually, this conflict will segregate all administration of money by governments into a privatized part of their public selves: a central bank. Indeed, any privatized power could only remain public as long as just part of it became private. So the same governments will become private by delegating all their control over money to that private part of themselves, which conversely will remain public just by belonging to them.

Finally, regardless of government structure, concrete objects can only represent money by remaining privately public, hence while still privately owned by the public part of governments, even if also by their central banks. For which to be possible, any government already privatized into its own central bank must create this always privately public money by borrowing it from that bank. Then, this government not only buys the created money from its privatized inner self, as which it reciprocally sells it to its public whole, but also destroys that money by paying it back to its lender bank, if ever. While conversely, that central bank becomes the original creditor of all this privately created, publicly loaned money, of which it must create ever more to enable paying its interest. As thus, with the resulting inflation and recursive interest payments, the same bank owns an ever-increasing fraction of the exchange value of all its issued money.

Still, even in the absence of any central bank, once commercial banks create money by loaning it to people who then use that money to buy public debt, or even just pay taxes, governments already borrow their money from the banking system, despite indirectly. Then, the partial privatization of those governments only lacks a formal, institutional expression.

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