Are You Ready To Barter?
June 4, 2012 by Tim Young
With Greece in a perpetual economic collapse over the past month, the serious concern and timing of our own economic failure has come into play.
When you think about it, economies could very well be like dominoes. Once you push one over, the rest will subsequently fall. With one Western country falling, more will be on the way. It’s only a matter of time until we see something hit us here in the United States.
When the dollar begins to drop, what will we do? I know that you probably have storage of your own already and you are prepared for at least a short amount of time, but what happens when that runs out?
Sure, you can hunt for food and you can filter your own water. But at some point, we will need to build back the communities that we once had and function together. The economy will grow again, but in a different way: by bartering.
When you think about bartering, you think about the olden days: walking into a general store with some sort of good or service and coming out with a product or going to a neighbor’s rickety wood house on the prairie and negotiating your ability to fix a roof for a good meal.
These situations aren’t that far-fetched even now. Did you know that a town in Greece has been functioning off of a barter system now for a few months? And that it’s been successful?
The town of Volos stopped operating on the crappy economy that was happening around it in Greece and began to function on its own. More than 800 businesses and the townspeople work on a barter system. They have monetized their economies by creating what they call the TEM.
The TEM is a currency that was basically created to make negotiating easy; it’s not really money. For example, one person will offer a chicken worth 2 TEM for yard work also worth 2 TEM. It’s nearly exactly what happened hundreds of years ago, and it’s happening now.
There are even luxuries in this barter system. Need to take yoga classes? They are offered in this system. And the magic of it all, the town of Volos is fully functional in its own economic system.
We currently use bartering systems and don’t realize it. Think about it, have you ever used Craigslist or an online system like it?
Craigslist has become the new town center, uniting thousands of people in a region in order to barter for services and goods. It has replaced the markets of old with the same type of trading, just on the Internet.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m certainly not saying we will have computers, electricity or the Internet to play with in certain scenarios. But if we did, you could barter for almost everything you would need right there, in your own home.
Are you ready to barter and bargain for what you need to survive? These are skills that you may not think to acquire and work on, or even teach your children about, but they may be necessary to survive.
One of the ways that you can teach your children about the bartering system and even survival in a collapsed economy is by using popular culture. If you had a chance to see the movie The Hunger Games, the film entails a desolate future wherein communities must work together to survive with basics such as food.
The movie and book series portray a future where there are tradesmen and markets and a limited supply of food. The people in the film are forced to barter, just like the olden days, in order to survive. This could be a great opportunity for you to start the conversation about a barter economy with your kids. Don’t get me wrong here either, I certainly am no fan of using Hollywood to teach children. But if it opens the window to their mind and they can picture the reality of it, you may have a great teachable moment.
It is my goal for you to be as prepared as possible in case the worst were to occur. I know that if you’re already reading this, you’re probably in better shape than most. But we can always prepare more and be better ready for the oncoming storm.
I wrote a report that goes into more depth about how to trade and barter in last month’s Lamp Lighter Report. I encourage you to access and read it if you have a chance. Our parents weren’t kidding when they told us to remember that knowledge is power.
Be smarter than they think you are,
Managing Editor, Absolute Rights