Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Really flimsy money to help fight inflation.

"This note is legal tender for all debts, public and private." (just don't breath on it.)
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(+1, -3)
  [vote for,

Make it out of rice paper or something. While the spendthrift government churns the stuff out on one end, it'll be ending up as pocket lint in the real world.

You could also put some kind of goop in it that causes bundles of it to bind together after a while like that dish of hard candy at your grandma's house.

Forget about getting the stuff around in wheelbarrows. By the time you get it to the store to buy that loaf of bread you've been saving up for it'll be so much congealed sludge.

The government could explain that they're doing it to be ironic or as some kind of protest against it's citizens for not paying enough taxes.

doctorremulac3, Oct 17 2009

Tokens of Plenty http://findarticles...27_v134/ai_6935066/
How baked clay counting stones may have been the precursor of abstract concepts of "number" as well as being a forerunner of written language. [zen_tom, Oct 19 2009]


       [-] banks would still have to exchange it for fresh bills, so all this would do is make people unhappy and encourage private companies to start paying employees in Euros.   

       A better solution would be to create enough economic growth that inflation is not an issue.
sninctown, Oct 17 2009

       If the material for coins could change to butter, maybe the money in your pocket could be used to make laminated dough.   

       // The government could explain that they're doing it to be ironic
In a world run by the halfbakery members, that kind of press release would probably be issued a lot.
jutta, Oct 18 2009

       Money form isn't the problem. The problem is attaching a fair valid price to anything.
wjt, Oct 18 2009

       // cheaper than toilet paper, in effect //   

       There would be the additional vicarious amusement of smearing excrement on an image of that squalid little bandit Mugabe.   

       This idea has effectively been Baked; during the Weimar republic, in occupied france, 1970's Bolivia and a few other places; bogroll-thin notes of huge denominations. These situations invariably end badly.
8th of 7, Oct 18 2009

       No need to skimp on the paper, people all over the world clamor for dollars. They fill up their reserves with it. The demand is infinite, so forget about cars and computers, this is the only export we need.
ldischler, Oct 18 2009

       It seems a waste of money (time? effort? resources?) to print money that will just fall apart. Why not just stop printing money?
goldbb, Oct 18 2009

       The economy - any economy - needs to exhibit a little bit of inflation - the diminishing value of an arbitrary currency unit helps drive money around the economy rather than getting tucked up underneath people's mattresses - it forces people to be a part of the system, and it's being a part of the system that allows governments to tax, authorities to regulate and wealth to be constantly distributed. Money is only any good for as long as its flowing - in a healthy economy, it should be constantly churned through as many transactions as possible, it keeps it fresh, and aerates the economy as it tumbles about (yes, this can cause bubbles - but the trick is to get lots of small bubbles, like in Champagne, rather than one big coalesced bubble that makes a mess when it bursts - but that's another story)   

       Money in this sense doesn't have to be tangible - but paper (or coin) money is limited in terms of the number of transactions it can be involved with by its physicality - credit-based (trust based) transactions, can be performed by writing a number in a book, or flipping a bit in a computer - and as such, things can move much faster if you ignore the physicality.   

       But, since we are talking about tangible money - yes, flimsy, delicate money might reel-in inflation to some extent, but that's not necessarily a good thing. And if you found yourself in a hyper-inflative inflationary cycle, it probably wouldn't make that much of a difference anyway.   

       Some people might wrap their money in cling-film, or have it laminated - or companies might offer a service where a guaranteed, validated amount of money is sealed inside a jar, so as to preserve it, and then these (much more robust) containers of nominal amounts be traded amongst people. *   

       If something is made too difficult to use practically, someone will come up with a way of "practicalising" it.   

       * Strangely enough, it is thought that a method not unlike this came to form the early idea of "number" as an abstract concept. Initially, when people counted things, they would substitute a counter (a stone, or bead or something reasonably convenient) for each item they wanted to count - so if you had 100 sheep, you'd also have 100 sheep-counters. Taking them to market, if you actually sold a sheep, you'd give one of your counters to the person you sold it to, so that when you counted your sheep back home again, you'd still have a 1-1 ratio of sheep to sheep-counters.   

       People who dealt with lots of goods (like warehouses, temples etc) got tired of all those loose counters lying about, so bundled them up and sealed them inside clay jars, leaving an imprint in the clay to show how many items there were inside - these clay jars were then traded among people, still with the actual counters embedded inside - it wasn't until much later that people realised that they didn't actually need the little counters at all, as long as they could trust that the writing on the outside of the jars was transferable and usable as tender.
zen_tom, Oct 19 2009

       I wish you'd taken my Economics 101 lectures. You're pretty good at explanations.
wagster, Oct 19 2009

       Indeed. Just don't but anything from him, like the Eiffel Tower or the Brooklyn Bridge ....
8th of 7, Oct 19 2009

       Thanks guys - [8th] I do happen to have a rather nice line in London Bridges at the moment - 3 for 2, yours for half a bar.
zen_tom, Oct 19 2009

       // 3 for 2 //   

       Oooh, buy-one-get-one-free ? Excellent ! Tell us more. Do you want us to send you a downpayment or anything ?
8th of 7, Oct 19 2009

       Yes, that's right [8th] I can tell you are an experienced and successful businessman - you will of course first be asked to wire a downpayment, which we will hold in guaranteed escrow on your behalf. In addition we would require some various administration fees, don't concern yourselves with these - they are merely tax and bureaucracy-based expedition fees. Please send your bank account details, along with a signed mandate allowing us to utilise your account (as qualified agent on your behalf) and we will take care of all the tedious arrangements.   

       The Bridges will be delivered to your chosen location at a time convenient to you, just as soon as we can make courier arrangements.
zen_tom, Oct 19 2009

       I think the Italians tried this idea, judging by the lira I got when I visited there in the 1980s.
bungston, Oct 19 2009

       // wire a downpayment //   

       Would you prefer Western Union or MoneyGram ? Or would it be easier if we just sent the full payment in advance in used notes (nothing larger than a $20, non-sequential serial numbers) to a Post Office Box in Lagos ? We are totally reassured by your promise of escrow, this is completely unnecessary and a waste of time and money. You are obviously a genuine and trustworthy vendor. We will put our Post Office savings book, an Enduring Right of Attorney, and all our other financial details in with the cash, if that's all right with you. Oh, and we'll put some blank sheets of headed paper with our signature on the bottom, to speed up the process.   

       When can we expect delivery ?
8th of 7, Oct 19 2009

       On successful receipt of the monies, we will send you, by priority mail, your first brick. And then monthly thereafter until full delivery is achieved. Congratulations sir, you are a winner!
zen_tom, Oct 19 2009

       Fine, fine ....
8th of 7, Oct 19 2009

       * some assembly required.
ye_river_xiv, Oct 20 2009


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