What is Money?

Monetary economics refers to something as money when it has three main properties. From this perspective, money is something that is a:

  • Unit of Account
  • Medium of Exchange
  • Store of Value

Mike Maloney argues that real money must also possess four additional properties. From his point-of-view, money must also be:

  • Portable
  • Durable
  • Divisible
  • Fungible

These definitions are interesting academically in the study of monetary economics. However, there is a hidden problem with these kinds of models because they obfuscate what money really is: Money is Metal.

This principle, that money is metal, or MiM for short, is meant to be taken literally, not metaphorically. It is not an abstract concept. Money is literally made from metal: real physical metal. Money has always has been made from metal and always will be. If you drop money on your foot then it hurts. If you throw money at the wall then it makes a dint. You can heat it up, you can bend it, and you can put it in your pocket.

A true metallist accepts the MiM principle, advocates for the use of metallic money, and the exclusion of paper and digital currency. Some people might argue that the MiM principle overstates the case for hard money. But true metallists will remain recalcitrant and resist the corrosive nature of soft money.