Students debate value of dollar
Some college students say that they have no money. But imagine living without money whatsoever. Rather than paying for things with paper bills from the Federal Reserve, you barter for your needs.
This is the approach John Rice has taken. While he uses money for basic needs, like his education, Rice said he uses his artwork as means of bartering because he said he believes the United States Federal Reserve system is corrupt.
“For every dollar that we use in this country, it’s just a note of debt,” Rice said. “Our government has to buy the money from the Fed. Then they have to repay it back with interest. So for every dollar that we use, the Fed makes a dollar plus interest. So it’s kind of like a perpetual system of debt.”
Rice voiced his beliefs Thursday afternoon in Freedom Square standing in a colonial-style stock, his head and arms hackled between two wooden planks, painted with the face of a one dollar bill so students would approach him and ask questions.
Aymen Romodan, a senior nursing major, was one who spoke with Rice as he was shackled in his stock. Romodan asked about why Rice believed the value of a dollar meant nothing.
“It’s dead, it’s not even money,” Rice said “The best thing you could do right now is take our money and light it up.”
Although Romodan said he didn’t plan on burning his money, he said he did understand Rice’s message. His initial reaction upon listening to Rice’s views was that the USA puts too much value in money
“We need money to be happy,” Romodan said. “That was my first understanding.”
Rice said there are communities that function entirely on a bartering system and that there are other alternatives to the current monetary system. There is a new digital currency referred to as a Bitcoin.
“The people that use Bitcoin aren’t suffering from all the inflation and stuff that we are,” Rice said. “Anything that people can do to lessen the control that the Federal Reserve has over this country is a positive step.”
Although Rice said it’s difficult to live entirely without money, he thought it was important for students to be aware of what he believed was happening in their country.