NEWS > EVERYONE ELSE > FRENCH TO FORGO MONEY IN FAVOUR OF SMILES
FRENCH TO FORGO MONEY IN FAVOUR OF SMILES
September 16 2009
Paris, France – Money, it has been said, is the root of all evil. As much a part of our day-to-day lives as every other component combined money no doubt has hold over us. Though in many ways a form of slavery, money has also been the drive behind
civilization itself and has shaped our species in fundamental ways. Forging new relationships between peoples and allowing us to create the massive and successful societies we now find ourselves in, money has been the principle expression of and catalyst for our growth as a species.
Of course the focus of money has changed fundamentally as the years have progressed. Once simply a practical necessity, money has now become the raison d’être for many people with groups and individuals hording mass quantities and some being left with none. Because of its importance and its controversial nature money is never far from the thoughts of most people but for some people, namely the French, all that is about to change. President Nicolas
Sarkozy has made one of the most shocking and potentially revolutionary changes ever with a declaration that smiles will now be the primary currency of the country replacing the Euro which has placed the nation as one of the top economic powers in the world.
“A great revolution is waiting for us. For years, people said that finance was a formidable creator of wealth, only to discover one day that it accumulated so many risks that the world almost plunged into chaos,” said Sarkozy. “The [banking] crisis doesn't only make us free to imagine other models, another future, another world. It obliges us to do so. I will fight to make all international organisations change their statistical systems by following the recommendations.”
France has been one of the few countries at the bottom end of the recovery scale since the recession began. It’s not clear if the desire to move from the traditional model of GDP towards a Gross Happiness is a result of a change in attitude amongst the French people or a realization that traditional recovery will continue to be difficult for years to come.
“France isn’t the only country that has experimented with this model. Bhutan for example has played with the happiness model for a number of years and been quite successful. Of course France has a hundred times the population of Bhutan, a military, hospitals, schools, a massive roadway infrastructure, and major economic ties to other countries. It’s going to be hard to sell those debtors on smiles,” said Scrape TV Economic analyst Michael Santino. “We will have to wait and see how they outline this new initiative. They may use traditional
means, money, to buy goods and trade with other nations and simply force their people to subsist on smiles. That’s going to make it hard for them to do any travelling but who knows; perhaps the smiles will be contagious and take over the world.”
McDonald’s has experimented with smiles for years though has traditionally given them away for free. It’s not clear how such free smiles will be dealt with in the new French system.
“The real problem with smiles as commodity is that people are inclined to smile by their nature. People smile at children, at jokes, they smile all the time. Now smiles will come with obligations and expectations that may serve to ultimately undo French society permanently,” continued Santino. “Now people will be forced to not smile unless they are looking for something. You also run the risk of insincere or counterfeit smiles becoming a major issue. It is a whole lot easier to produce a fake smile than it is a fake piece of currency and that is something the French will have to address in order for this to be a success.”
When asked about possibly implementing the French plan, British officials just smiled.