Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Dollar Disappearing: Communities Printing Their Own Money

A small but growing number of cash-strapped communities are printing their own money.

Borrowing from a Depression-era idea, they are aiming to help consumers make ends meet and support struggling local businesses.
The systems generally work like this: Businesses and individuals form a network to print currency. Shoppers buy it at a discount — say, 95 cents for $1 value — and spend the full value at stores that accept the currency.

Workers with dwindling wages are paying for groceries, yoga classes and fuel with Detroit Cheers, Ithaca Hours in New York, Plenty in North Carolina or BerkShares in Massachusetts.
Ed Collom, a University of Southern Maine sociologist who has studied local currencies, says they encourage people to buy locally. Merchants, hurting because customers have cut back on spending, benefit as consumers spend the local cash.

"We wanted to make new options available," says Jackie Smith of South Bend, Ind., who is working to launch a local currency. "It reinforces the message that having more control of the economy in local hands can help you cushion yourself from the blows of the marketplace."
About a dozen communities have local currencies, says Susan Witt, founder of BerkShares in the Berkshires region of western Massachusetts. She expects more to do it.


  1. YES...



    Everyone get together.
    Print your own money.

    When America began they had script money and did very well until the Banksters fraudulently got them using the Banksters money.

  2. Heck the script is just as reliable as that TP The Fed prints............

    I'm thinking SEs will become the new icon of currecy after it all goes belly up!

  3. Yeah, right! Tee-hee. I'll be printing up my munnie real soon. They all you doomster wanker saps can send me all the phoney FedResNotes you want. I'll send you back lots and lots of my reellookin' munnie. Honest.

    And they'll be made right here in America by some of the same fat little brown butt-scratchin' paws that sling that Mickey-Ds your way so you can keep crammin' your morbidly obese pustulant jaws til you drop.

    Sorry, I don't mean it. Yes, I do!!! TEE HEE!!!

  4. This is entertaining, but thats about all.

  5. At least its worth more than the bongo bucks these yahoos out in Moosebones, Montana are passing out.

    I need monehy!

    I've got about 500 Whopper wrappers, mostly without sauce. Can I get something for that?

    What's this I keep hearing about Government Cheese. When ever i come up on people talking about it, they get real quiet. And then before I can say anything they are gone. I don't believe its just me.

    The other day there was a line in front of the County office building and I thought maybe theyre was something there for me and before I could get parked and over there the door was locked and all the cheese was gone. I saw it. Another woman came running up. She had been crying and it lookd like someone had hit her in th mouth. I asked her and she just acted like I wasn't there. When I yelled at her and grapped her shoulder she slapped me and I almost fell doen.

    When is the next give away. Where will it be? I will give half of it to anyoen that will tell me. We can take my car.

  6. I would say that spending locally is a good thing, but I find local businesses in my town have terrible service. I mean just awful. They make the local Wal-mart look good. That's how bad it is. The locals forgot about quality and service because 4 years ago we had no choice. Now they are suffering for their past mistakes.

  7. is a Berkshares clone also see Community Currency Magazine.


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