The Votive Economy II – How Money and the Vote Relate

With their contrary visions of humanity’s relationship with power capitalism and democracy can be set up as dialectically opposing forces – thesis and antithesis. In Part I , we refined the ideologies of capitalism and democracy down to their units of value; money and the vote. Even though they are in opposition, these values are in a constant, systematic synthesis based on a set of rules or laws. The outcome or proxy of this synthesis is human political and economic life.

“Without contraries there is no progression” – William Blake

Due to the advent of networked digitisation we are currently undergoing a step change in the nature of their relationship. The digitised networks of the information age have performed an alchemical trick on the unitary values of capitalism and democracy that we have still not fully grasped the consequences of. Classical liberal democracy was forged in a time in which money and the vote were two vastly different mediums. Money was gold and silver specie, promissory notes, scrip. A vote was the ‘aye’ of a propertied man standing in a parliament or some other ornate chamber designated to count his voice. Now money and the vote are represented in the same digital medium and can therefore directly interoperate and be directly interchanged. To illustrate how radical this state of affairs is, imagine that the ‘aye’ of the propertied man standing in the ornate chamber was a magical spell, and caused a shower of gold coins to appear in mid air and clatter across the floor. Imagine if another man could then stand and state ‘nay’, and cause the gold coins to disappear. This is now the reality we live in and the context in which money and the vote must be considered.

Definition from The Concise Oxford Dictionary, Ninth Edition (1996)

Networked digitisation is not creating something new in terms of the dynamics of votes and money, but abstracting, compressing, proliferating and accelerating an existing process, that being our ability to use the power of the decisive word embodied in a vote – yes and no, for or against – to shape reality, by interacting with money which then drives the economy through real activity. The heating up of this process is so extreme that it represents a state change in the political economy, like solid to liquid, which in its impact seems like another state of existence.

As this new context is already real and not a hypothetical, it must follow that money and the vote’s new relationship is already in effect, and therefore we should be able to find real examples in the world from which we can draw axioms. Rather than working abstractly with the values of money and the vote to reach a synthesis through deductive reasoning, this inductive approach allows us to work backwards from the interoperation of money and the vote in the real world. The next few posts will examine the areas of Banking, Government, Law, Commerce, and Cryptocurrency, providing examples of the relationship between money and the votes in each and drawing a set of axioms, which will be identified in bold within each example. This will build towards a list we can then use in Part 3 to start devising a new political and economic paradigm that takes full account of the new state of reality that we find ourselves in.

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