FOR THE FLOWER BANK
Our future is something we share, but some of us more than others. Children have to live in the future we create, and yet there are some things that we do not discuss with them that maybe we should? The economic system we inhabit, breath in and take for granted is changing. Money is something we are now beginning to understand. Let us tell a story, an allegory for and with our children about this future. The future that is theirs and ours.
Sound of Money Falling
On April 17th - spring 2005 - we shall start a new system to exchange and share our stories. Young stories, new stories, owned by and written for our future. Those of us that will grow up in this future. Money is not the only way to share, to work together, to believe and create a better way of life. Lets experiment, play a little, see if there are other ways, maybe better ways; because the way "it is" is not the way it has to be.
Money is out of control. It controls us. It is not everything and yet it seems that we cannot live without it. If we want bread, a place to stay, medicine, a present for a loved one - then we depend on money. And it depends on us. It needs us to believe, believe that it is the only way, believe in its power - power to do, to get things done.
The way money works is not so hard to understand. A simple piece of magic. A promise that if I have it, you will accept it for something I need. A promise that a shop, a factory, a government, or a friend will say "yes". When we lose our belief, when we longer believe this promise, then the economy breaks down. The great engine grinds to a halt. People become "unemployed", factories close, families go hungry, and workers go home.
Why do they stop? Why do the factories close? Why do people stop working and go hungry? The soil is still there, food can be planted. The factory too, still stands, and things can be made? But no-one can buy them. The money has gone - the promise has been lost. Why do bankers earn more than nurses, or teachers? Why does it pay to be ruthless, or selfish, perhaps even mean?
It does not have to be like this. There are other games we can play to share and work. We start another game here in Vienna this spring. A game we can all play. A game we can learn from and enjoy. We start a new money backed by flowers. We will make a bank where we store these flowers, pressed and dried so they keep their beauty. The more we pick the more we have, the more we can share.
This treasure of ours will be a secret. We will not tell anyone. We will hide this secret from the other world, the world they call "real", so no-one can steal it. But we will use it. On the internet we will exchange the money we have made. For each flower picked and pressed we will create a piece of money. A token that we can send via the internet to someone else - like sending a promise.
We will use this money to create projects. Things we think worth while. We will talk and debate the rules how this new money should be used and spent, and choose how to invest it. We will give it to artists to create films and plays, stories that teach us, that make us laugh. We will use it to learn. Artist can then use this new money to exchange, to work together and share. Share stories told in different ways, in different languages. We will swap these pressed flowers with friends in other countries, with different stories to tell. We will work out a new game to play.
The Flower Bank is Our Bank!
Come and help us start the flower bank. It will be your bank - our bank. First we must pick the flowers to go into the bank, and we must press them and count them. Then we can create the flower money and give it to artists to create new work. In this way we can all grow together, we can plant new seeds for new projects. Everyone who helps, everyone who makes, and everyone who does, will own our bank, will own the flower bank - www.theflowerbank.org = www.ourbank.org.