Easy First Steps To Building Your Barter Network
By Brandon Smith
June 13, 2011
The trading of goods without the use of paper currency is not a difficult concept. People all across the country do it everyday. Barter, in its simplest sense, is not dead, and never will be. However, the organized use of barter as an alternative to the mainstream economy; THAT is something America has all but forgotten. One serious problem that I consistently seem to run into is the assumption that barter needs “backers”, meaning, many people believe the existing methodology of business must be the driver for barter to become “big” again. For decades, barter organizations of every shape and size have been so focused on pursuing a centralized corporate profit model that they forget the foundation of success in barter is the strength of the individual participants. This is why we have seen so many false starts and failures in localized commerce initiatives. It is the same reason why many existing barter groups remain in a sort of stasis, unable to grow, frustrating organizers and members alike. Liberty Dollar, for instance, was so centralized that a single federal raid was all that was needed to dismantle Bernard von NotHaus’ accomplishments and his years of effort.
The manner in which many businesses function today is, in fact, abnormal, and rather distorted. We live in a top down pyramid shaped economy in which the masses are motivated not by self sustainability, self betterment, or even profit, but the desire to attain a seat at the top, the peak, where they believe they will finally be safe and secure. This is a delusion, of course. The pyramid itself is built upon unstable ground, where debt and fiat wobble and tremble under the weight of the system, and millions upon millions of foolhearty souls clamor over each other, lying, backstabbing, and sabotaging each other, relinquishing their honor and their dignity for what usually amounts to scraps from the tables of an elite few (how many warped and despondent middle management types do you know?). Transferring this mentality to the world of private commerce and localized barter is a ridiculous notion.
Barter must be based on solid principles, honesty, and the unique strengths and talents of each and every participant. The modern corporate philosophy must be abandoned, and true entrepreneurship must return. Trade relationships based on trust must be placed in the forefront, and the “do anything for a buck, kiss ass to get ahead” mentality needs to be thrown to the curb. Profit will always be an influencing factor, as it should be, but power (centralization) only poisons.