It is often forgotten that the basic function of money is to help people exchange goods and services. So when the dollar is failing us, why not set up an exchange system that actually works?
Many alternative currencies and barter systems have emerged in recent years with great success such as the American Liberty Dollar, the New York Ithaca Hour, and the Global Barter System in Central and South America. All of these have shown that alternative currencies:
- Help support local communities
- Strengthen local economies
- Help those in need who are not benefiting from the formal economy
- Decrease dependency on a fiat based, Fed controlled, inflation ridden dollar
- Are entirely possible
- Are growing in popularity
Although it seems counterintuitive to earn wages, buy groceries, or make any transactions without a formally recognized currency such as the US dollar, it is much easier and much more effective than one would imagine.
Take a look at some of the models below to find out more about the advantages and the challenges of creating or using an alternative currency in your area.
Ithaca Hours – This local currency has been widely used in Ithaca, New York. Many businesses and community members participate in the program and are helping to keep money within the community.
Time Banks – This organization and system of exchange is based on a very simple concept: for every hour you volunteer services, you earn a “time dollar”, which can be cashed in for other services offered by participants. This has been adopted in more than 22 countries, bringing neighbors and communities together throughout the world.
Liberty Dollar – This was the second most popular American currency after the US dollar. It was a private voluntary barter currency, 100% backed and redeemable in silver and gold. In 2007, its facilities were raided by the government who claimed the Liberty dollar was illegal. We believe these allegations were false and largely motivated by the mounting threat of its success. Their website was removed due to court order.Global Barter Network - This Central and South American bartering system emerged in the 1990’s due to mass unemployment and the failure of Argentina’s economy. It helped many get the goods and services they needed using alternatively issued “credits”, and grew to include more than 7 million members.