Eyja Margrét Brynjarsdóttir: Blood sugar, Working weeks, Yardsticks: On Money, Work, and Value
In this paper, various limitations of money as a measure of the value of commodities and work are discussed. It is argued that money is very unreliable when it comes to any kind of measurement despite its widespread use for such purposes. The main reasons are twofold: On the one hand, money is extremely unstable as a measuring scale, whereas stability tends to be considered a precondition for reliability of a measuring scale. On the other hand, it is often very unclear what exactly it is that money is meant to be measuring. The paper covers theories about the value of objects and their relation to work as well as how money is connected to value measurement; ideas about disconnecting money from work with unconditional basic income are discussed; the connection of money to debt, coercion and slavery is briefly considered; and finally John Locke's ideas about fixing the value of money via the immutable value of precious metals are discussed.
Key words: money, value, work, measurement, philosophy