What is the price of FREE?

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AndreasB's picture
AndreasB
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What is the price of FREE?

Hi all,

a thought crossed my mind a few weeks ago; "what is the price of FREE?". Today there is a lot of focus on getting things for free, almost no matter in what area you look at. I am still pondering if things actually can be FREE or is this just another "ill" symptom of the crazy financial situation we are in?

Seems like everything always has a price (or cost) somewhere and that ought to be the same for everything that is claimed to be FREE. Question would be then, who actually benefits from FREE? Could it be compared with how the central banks just create money out of "nothing" and build up things out of debt. Will FREE actually have such a high price tag in the long run that some people will face severe challenges in their wealth and security.

Would be great to get some other peoples thoughts and ideas on this topic.

Sincerely,

 Andreas

SingleSpeak's picture
SingleSpeak
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Joined: Dec 1 2008
Posts: 503
It depends -

Free is a highly valued word in the marketing world. It gets people's attention. 

I've been teaching guitar privately for over 20 years. Up until 2008 I never gave a "Free trial" lesson like a lot of other teachers. The demand was too great and the waiting list was too long. Since that time I've offered it to get a chance to win the student.

So I'd say in this case the client wins.

Every case is different and if you can't figure out why something is being offered for free, it might be best to pass.

SS

jneo's picture
jneo
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Posts: 742
A monetary system needs

 

A monetary system needs degrees of inefficiency and scarcity to create a price aka Equilibrium. 

Efficiency, Sustainability and abundance are not in the best interest of the current money system. 

If for example Tesla's Free energy machine was truly funded to help society and give free energy as opposed to the current inefficient ways of distributing energy, the pocket book of the individual would be better off but not the corporation. 

Is the air you breathe free?, the sunlight free?   When you were a kid growing up, free was all around you given that you grew up in the industrialized world. 

If FREE is the new coming paradigm, then a improved value system needs to go with it. 

Poet's picture
Poet
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TANSTAAFL

Here's a thought in an image...

Poet

ALIHAYMEG's picture
ALIHAYMEG
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Natural State

It is the natural state of everything to be FREE. The imposition of COST is manmade and certainly not natural. We have created the only species ever to exist that must "purchase" its right to be alive. The creation of a monetary market paradigm has been instrumental in allowing humanity to progress and become more than it could have been otherwise; I do not dispute that fact or claim that we could have gotten to where we are without some form of it. That does not mean that we will ALWAYS have to subject ourselves to the whims of an un-natural market based system in order to live well. To answer the question more specifically, if all monetary value was stripped away there would still be cost associated with the use of resources. But these costs could be weighed honestly and naturally; without the distorting influence of an added layer of value to consider. Everything has value, but it is not unavoidable to have to consider "monetary" value above the "human" value of things. The air we breathe is the most valuable substance on the planet from a "human” value perspective; and it is the least valuable substance from a monetary perspective. That reveals the distorting tendency of "monetarisation".

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Oliveoilguy
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Posts: 578
Natural State
ALIHAYMEG wrote:

It is the natural state of everything to be FREE. The imposition of COST is manmade and certainly not natural. We have created the only species ever to exist that must "purchase" its right to be alive. The creation of a monetary market paradigm has been instrumental in allowing humanity to progress and become more than it could have been otherwise; I do not dispute that fact or claim that we could have gotten to where we are without some form of it. That does not mean that we will ALWAYS have to subject ourselves to the whims of an un-natural market based system in order to live well. To answer the question more specifically, if all monetary value was stripped away there would still be cost associated with the use of resources. But these costs could be weighed honestly and naturally; without the distorting influence of an added layer of value to consider. Everything has value, but it is not unavoidable to have to consider "monetary" value above the "human" value of things. The air we breathe is the most valuable substance on the planet from a "human” value perspective; and it is the least valuable substance from a monetary perspective. That reveals the distorting tendency of "monetarisation".

Well stated Alihaymeg

Since you indicate that a "monetary market paradigm" is part of our social structure, how can you envision a situation where we live without it? 

ALIHAYMEG's picture
ALIHAYMEG
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Posts: 22
The Real Challenge

Well stated Alihaymeg

Since you indicate that a "monetary market paradigm" is part of our social structure, how can you envision a situation where we live without it?

There is no greater challenge facing the human race than to find an adequate answer to that question. There have been many visionary persons and groups attempting to do just that, and many of their solutions make a great deal of sense. It seems that the first step is already under way; namely a shifting of consciousness away from the "dog eat dog" mentality that we have all been forced into by the system itself. In other words, what is required is a "revolution in consciousness" as Krishnamurti calls it. Nothing can change until this shift becomes pervasive. What it will look like is an abandoning of the "Darwinian" notion of "survival of the fittest" which is what we have all been indoctrinated into. It will be marked by a distinctive change in the underlying mentality of the human race; from self-centered and personal prosperity to collective prosperity; from idiosyncratic pursuits to a place of defining ourselves by what we contribute to the collective rather than what we can strip away from it for personal gain.

The largest barriers to this shift are the dominance of the "corporate" entities that have effectively set themselves up as the masters, while simultaneously co-opting the blind acquiescence of the majority; the fear of the masses of middle class citizens in "Western" nations who are under the spell of the "corporate owned" media propaganda machine; and the fact that we have become completely decoupled from the reality that nature is nothing if not a dictatorship. In other words, the laws governing nature are not under our control. We are at all times subject to the limitations imposed upon us by the finite nature of Earth's resources. The majority of our citizens still believe that we can continue on this path indefinitely, and that all of the warnings of impending shortages are just exaggerations.

It's quite a challenge indeed, but I also see it as inevitable. I'm just not sure if we can do it the easier way or if it will require a complete meltdown for the necessity to become obvious. I hope for the former but expect the latter.

As for the specifics, I think we will have to come to those collectively and allow them to “emerge” naturally as every system does. I do lean toward the concept of a “Resource Based” paradigm.

 

ralfy's picture
ralfy
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Joined: Dec 31 2008
Posts: 60
In terms of ecological

In terms of ecological footprint, the price is one more earth.

 

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