Money is an abstraction of energy (a derivative thereof), and anyone that says otherwise is either ignorant, confused or dishonest. The cost of anything loosely represents the net energy footprint of that item or service. Lets examine and explore what this means in different contexts.
The universe is made of matter and energy. Manipulating matter (to produce things, move food or people) requires energy. Thus the cost of anything (goods or service) is related to the rarity (artificial or natural) of the materials used, and is also related to the net energy required to produce the good or service. I have tried to explain this idea to others for years, but for one reason or another people seem to reject this truth.... and this gives me pause for thinking about it!
Conveying the above fact concisely was enabled by a revelation I had while asleep. I posted this after thinking about carbon footprint calculations used to compare a Chevy Volts relative energy efficiency to a conventional gasoline/ diesel vehicle of the same size, weight, functionality class, passenger safety and driver feature level.
Perhaps this "subject matter" is too esoteric and abstract for normal people to "think about it" in a way that increases their awareness or understanding.
There is a way of "thinking about it" that should make intuitive sense to nearly everyone:
Food is energy that powers the human experience. Everyone requires food to function, and without food people cannot do anything. All goods and services produced by people are therefore directly dependent on the real base economy on which all other economic systems are built: agriculture.
How often do people think about the soil economy? All foods (with rare exception) are grown in soil. How often do people think about water economy? All foods require water in their production. How often do people think about how pollution affects our food systems, and thus ultimately our bodies when we consume the polluted food?
We have been removed from the farms by factory monocrop systems of industrialization that requires the burning of finite fossil fuels to function. We have been treated by evil corporations as science experiences as they sell us GMO foods that are not labeled. When we try as a people to get GMO labels on foods, the evil corporations rise up with the capital strength and publish damning disinformation and misinformation to trick and manipulate the voting public into not supporting GMO label laws. What happened to business ethics? To fairness and honesty? Even China requires GMO foods to be labeled, and that speaks volumes to anything that seriously thinks about it!
The following are some good related readings:
"Every Farm a Factory"
"A History of Science and Society"
"Culture and Materialism"
"Stuff, the Secret Lives of Everyday Things"
You know that you have a choice as a person to change the future of the world. Every dollar you spend, every thought that goes through your mind, every choice that you make, every actions that you exert on the world affects the future. When we aggregate (combine) all of the individual choices that people are making we have economy systems for analysis. Together we act on the world to change it and our collective future.
The world we live in and the one relevant to human peoples is defined by people. Our government, our laws, our culture: these are all subject to change by changes made by people. If we as a people demand GMO labels and ethical business management, then the systems will become that we because the systems are made of people, and choices that people make.
The choices that you make absolutely affect your future and the future of everyone else. For example if I made a choice to drive a dump truck as a passenger vehicle for private use, I would place a burden on others through the increase road wear and pollution generated by that choice. They, everyone else would have to breath my increased emissions and pay for the increased road wear that my dump truck would place on the road ways.
If I construct a nuclear weapon and set it off, I will not just affect myself, I would affect all other people around me, and the toxic effect would contaminate, pollute and poison in persistent way that land and everything that lives in the land around me for many decades or possibly longer. I would never construct or set off a weapon of mass destruction. I love all other people and only used this example to show how an individuals choices can affect other people greatly.
My parents lost a young daughter to a car accident. The driver was an inexperienced teenage, operating a vehicle with bald tires in the snow, on steep hilly roads. He lost control of his vehicle and ran over her; She died of brain injuries resulting from that accident. This single event precipitated massive emotional, social, financial and structural changes in the lives of my parents, of the driver, of his parents and of many other people. I today continue to be affected (positively) by my knowledge of this event. I reflect on it among other issue to recognize that the choices that individual makes affects everyone.
My goal in posting this editorial article is to enlighten other people, such that they may stop and think about their choices carefully, knowing that these thoughts, choices and actions that they make, have real tangible affects on their own lives and on the other people they encounter.
The lasting legacy of literature for example is another way that the actions of a person can affect others throughout time. The bible for example, despite its age, yields wisdom and knowledge that comes from the divine inspiration behind the writing. For many centuries the bible has shaped individuals, who shaped science and society and culture.
Again, we live in a world that is made of our choices! We have agency to choose to be ethical, fair and honest people. We have a choice to reject sin and embrace love. We each have a choice to accept Jesus Christ and through him and with him to worship the massive star breath all powerful ever present all knowing creative loving generous graceful creator of the universe, heavenly father God.
The stuff that comes out of the tail pipe of your car hurts other people. The stuff that exits a fire being burned hurts other people. The stuff that comes off of our brake rotors and tires hurts other people. When we choose to buy foods that are sprayed with pesticides or are GMO we are hurting other people. In order to understand how our actions affect our future and other people we have to really carefully "think about it"