Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Just another Brick in the wall

Over on Cherokee Gothic yesterday, I wrote about a factory in Russia that was paying its workers in bricks.

I claimed that bricks were not a very good medium of exchange.

It was pointed out to me on social media by Alex Tabarrok and Larry White that James Buchanan had mooted exactly a brick standard for money!

As Larry put it,  "Bank reserves wouldn't be in the vault, they would BE the vault."

There's a discussion of Buchananian monetary musings in Chapter 2 of a recent book put out by Cato. The chapter is written by Hugh Rockoff.

Buchanan also discussed a labor standard, where you could pedal a stationary bike to get cash from an ATM.

In both cases he wanted the monetary system to be "the employer of last resort".

3 comments:

Noah Smith said...

One time my friend and I crushed up a brick and tried to sell it as a street drug called "Brick". We failed to sell any, though.

Mark Anderson said...

That was you!

Mark Anderson said...

That was you!