Chapter 3. Features of a «scientific» monetary
- Measurement and metric systems.
- Measuring units.
- Measuring procedures.
- Measuring documents.
From all that we have seen in Chapter 1, on
how the monetary systems were at origin and how they should be now, a fundamental
affirmation can be inferred: the nature of all the monetary systems is
that of a metric system for measuring the exchange value in the
market of specific goods.
From all that we have seen in Chapter 2 on
how the monetary systems have been transformed and how they are now, a
fundamental verification can also be inferred: the present monetary system
not a good metric system, but rather a confused and confusing system.
In the following chapters we shall submit the necessary reform of the
monetary system in course, the necessary processing and introduction of
a rational and informative monetary instrument-document, included within
the framework of a pro-scientific8
We shall then carry on with the description of how these features are
worked out in the case of a monetary system.
1. Measurement and metric systems.
Measuring is one of the most important acts in any «scientific»
research which is to be tried out.
A «scientist», after carefully and thoroughly observing
the phenomena he is studying, gives out one or more hypotheses, which later
will have to be compared with reality through the preparation and realization
of suitable experiments.
But experiments -which are a voluntary and controlled modification of
reality, in order to obtain the results foreseen by the hypothesis at stake-
imply capturing as exactly as possible the reality experimented and its
variations and modifications, so that its comparison with the data foreseen
by the hypothesis be as close as possible.
To attain this accuracy, this faithfulness to the reality of the observed
phenomena, we use quantification, through measurements, of the above phenomena.
Quantification is a means of obtaining data which improves the approach
to reality, but besides it does it in an objective way.
Quantification of phenomena -or, better, of each one of the pervalences9
considered in the phenomena- is an unavoidable condition of any experimental
For quantification we use an instrument which is the metric system,
an number of conventionalisms and measuring proceedings which allow us
to observe reality under a quantitative aspect.
It must be pointed out that the quantitative representation of reality
does not give us any truth -because quantification is a purely abstract
convention and invention of man. But on the contrary it allows us to get
near to reality with objectivity and, as a consequence, with effectiveness.
Becausee the working out of quantitative laws on phenomena is the basis
of the action and modification on our behalf of the above phenomena -a
modification which we call technical-.
So any «science» must have available suitable metric systems
for measuring and quantifying the pervalences it wants to study.
Physics, for example, has systems for measuring pervalences, such as
length, density, time, temperature...
And on the contrary, the market science which we call Mercologics,
has no suitable metric system for measuring one of its fundamental pervalences:
the exchange value on the market of the existing specific goods. The monetary
system must be this system, but at present it has none of the unavoidable
conditions in order to fulfil effectively this function.
Every pro-scientific metric system must consist at least of the following
one measuring unit, rigorously defined, completely abstract and
one measuring system to allow in practice the act of measuring:
that is to allow to count how many defined units are contained in a specific,
one measuring document to leave documentary evidence of every measuring
act carried out, in order to be able to make an overall analysis and statistics.
2. Measuring units.
The measuring units we work out to measure a given pervalence of a specific
phenomenon, are completely abstract phenomena, and their invention is completely
arbitrary. The only condition is that their definition be very exact and
For example, the unit of length is the metre; this may be defined
as «the distance of the ten millionth part of the square of the earth
In mercologics, the fundamental pervalence which we want to measure
is the exchange value of specific goods; the measuring unit of this pervalence
is the monetary unit, which gets different names in every State,
as each of them defines its own monetary unit (the same as in ancient times
every country defined its own units of length, weight, volume...).
But the monetary units are a very special type of measuring unit, which
not stable. In fact, the exchange value of the specific goods is not
always the same, it is not identical in different situations of time and
space. The distance between Barcelona and Madrid is always the same; but
the exchange value of a liter of wine changes, in time and space, in terms
of a very complex number of causes, which we are not going to study here.
Since the reality it wants to measure is variable, the monetary unit
is also variable: there is no outer invariable constant with respect to
which the value of the monetary unit may be defined, so that the definition
of this unit is not fixed, but evolves with respect to the changes in the
exchange values of the specific values it measures.
Moreover, the monetary unit cannot be defined with respect to one only
privileged merchandise, but, in a given geographic space, it must be defined
with respect to all the goods which circulate in the time period under
3. Measuring procedures.
After a measuring unit whatsoever has been defined with rigorousness
and precision, it is necessary to invent the way to carry out in practice
the measurement of specific phenomena concerning anybody.
Carrying out a measurement is nothing more than counting the
number of abstract units contained in any specific phenomenon.
In the case of length units, everybody knows the tape measures, the
rulers, and so many instruments and measuring techniques, which make up
the measuring processes.
In the case of monetary units, the only imaginable system to carry out
the measurement of the exchange value of a specific merchandise, is the
exchange itself, the free exchange-monetary contract carried out between
two market agents. It is the freedom of the market play which creates prices
and salaries attributed to each specific merchandise (produced or producing,
respectively), at the same time while a sales-purchase act is being carried
Prices and salaries are mixed forms, specific-abstract, which issue
from every measuring act, from each comparison between the specific merchandise
to be measured and the abstract monetary unit in the free market.
And, paradoxically, it is from the whole prices and salaries fixed in
a given time-space that we can, through an operation contrary to that of
the fixing, define the value of the monetary unit in this time-space. Since
the value of the monetary unit -called currency- is only its average
purchasing ability in every given time-space.
4. Measuring documents.
The only unavoidable condition for any pro-scientific metric system,
is that any measuring act carried out be well documented, both with respect
to verifying its validity, and with respect to be able, later, to use the
elementary results obtained in analyses and statistics of the subject observed.
So every measuring act of the exchange value of any specific merchandise
-that is, every elementary trade exchange- must be fully documented.
As we have already seen in chapter 1, in
a rational monetary system, this documentation is automatically carried
out through the monetary instruments or the monetary documents. In fact,
the monetary instruments-documents are instruments because they
are used to improve exchanges; but they are also documents because
they record and save the trade act carried out through them.
The basic conditions which must be demanded from a serious documentation
are two: first, that every measuring act deliver its own document; second,
that this document be thorough, that is, it must contain all the meaningful
facts which converge in the measuring act carried out.
And it is in this respect that the present monetary system fails: because
it absolutely lacks a suitable documentation.
In the monetary system in force the monetary instruments consist mainly
of coins, pseudo-bank notes and bank currency. But all these instruments,
instead of documenting the acts of measurement-exchange in which they are
used, are of an essentially antidocumentary nature. Rather than
documenting, it may be said that they hide reality, because of their features
dynamism: they do not document one only elementary trade operation,
but they are used in a number of exchanges, they circulate on the market
for an indefinite time period, and carry out their role in an unknown number
of elementary exchanges. Because of this permanent mobilty, the present
monetary instruments are un-scientific because they are fundamentally un-statistic.
There is no possibility of drawing statistics with such uncontrollably
uniformity: the present monetary instruments are all of them identical;
they only change with respect to the number of monetary units they represent.
But they do not supply any indication as far as specific details of every
elementary exchange, where they take part, are concerned. They do not say
has been exchanged, nor how, nor when... This uniformity
is also unscientific because it is un-analytic. There is no possible analysis
of the complex and flowing trade reality, without an exact and detailed
documentation of every elementary act carried out.
anonymity: finally, the present monetary instruments are anonymous,
that is, they do not inform on who are the agents of a trade exchange
or of a given social-monetary act. Therefore they do not allow to allocate
responsibilities to the monetary agents. In this sense, the monetary instruments
in force are, besides, un-scientific and anti-justicial, because they allow
to carry out all sorts of monetary activities without leaving any personalizing
and responsibilizing trace.
The three un-scientific and anti-justicial features of the present monetary
instruments we have just mentioned are to be applied mainly to the pseudo-bank
notes, where they are quite evident.
Now, the bank currency (mainly current accounts, but also many other
kinds, more or less known by the layman), even if apparently it does not
meet these features -for example, it is usually nominal- it is also essentially
anti-documentary, because, if it does supply some documentation on the
acts carried out through it, this is a bank secret. Moreover, it may become
at any time pseudo-bank notes, so that its trace completely disappears.
If the present monetary instruments are the denial of what we have indicated
as a monetary instrument-document, we need, as a consequence, reconsider
the monetary instrument in a position to constitute the effective guarantee
of an exact and fully documented measurement of the exchange value of each
and all the goods existing on a given market.
Documenting exactly and precisely every free act of market-monetary
exchange is the only way of attaining the transformation of mercologics
into an experimental «science». And it is also the only way
of achieving, because of the monetary clarification and transparency obtained,
the transformation of the corrupt present society into a society more free,
responsible and just.
we mean «that it admits science, that it is thought keeping science
in mind» (science in the restricted meaning which we have mentioned
in our introduction).
is a «privileged value» inside the phenomenon, that is a feature,
a dimension, an aspect... of the phenomenon, which we are especially interested
in observing and studying.