How does one establish a Bartering Exchange? : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

I was going to post this as a question in David's thread below on "Banks/Bonds dependent on debtors to pay", but hopefully will get a wider response as a separate thread:

If (when) the current financial system fails or slows sufficiently down that the need to Barter increases, how exactly would one enter into a bartering exchange?

I suspect that small exchanges could be developed as part of a network for Community Preparedness. This could include an inventory of members of the exchanges skills and items available for barter.

Does anyone have a good source or suggestion on Bartering; How to Barter; or How to set up a Barter Exchange?

If Y2K actually ends up as a 9 or 10, won't Barter Exchanges be a way to reestablish the division of labor and the health of the community?

-- Bill P (, May 15, 1999


If you have prepared for Y2K, you will have no need to barter. However if you need to barter, stock up on book matches now. They are low cost now, but will have a high bartering value if Y2K is a 9 or a 10.

-- Why two kay (, May 15, 1999.

Bill P....

I don't mean to sound condescending because I'm not. I think this is a philosophical issue. If we're looking at a 9 or 10, we want to be a barterer to those we trust the most. A certain kind of law and order may be needed to insure those parties (of the G.I. nature) to successfully barter on a macrocosmic basis. There are vast interests at stake here and who knows, everyone will be responsible and be good citizens of WTF ever this nation has become at a 9 or 10 existence. The complex nature of it (bartering among anarchists) can be quite perplexing even to those who exercise common sense and patience. I think it would be conservative (correct me if I'm wrong) to suggest that an underground grapevine bartering scenario would be the norm to exchange goods and services. I'm afraid subversive tactics to recieve goods may surface and give public bartering a bad name outside of private pacts that have healthier returns. But what do I know?!

Sincerely, Feller

-- Feller (, May 16, 1999.

Community Markets will start in a worst case disaster. Everyone brings what they want to trade and they make deals. There is certianly enough physical junk around that one may like to get rid of and someone else needs it.

If one expects to land in a senerio such as this one might consider what would be valuable. Food and seeds for sure, spices, herbs, salt, coffee, tea and things that folks can buy now, soap, medecine, TP (of course) and what ever else.

Using gold would be only used in bigger purchases. It is a matter of scale. A bic lighter is worth so much a pack of matches are worth something else yet they achieve the same thing. Buy both. Having lots of something you usually use to market would be wise then if the crunch turns to a bump you have only lost interest. Coffee and tea in my mind would be excelant choises for storage - barter - use. This is of course if you drink coffee and tea. If we have a transportation snafu with the orient the tea supply may be slim. (drag) Yet if you buy 100lbs of tea it will store for along time and you would have tea for life. I could drink pound a month.

If you want to try a larger value trade item would be hand tools. Drills, planes, saws and all the quality knives you can get. Being a knife - saw sharpener would be a Y2K compliant trade.

Some ideas

-- Brian (, May 16, 1999.

Just a side thing, the knife, saw, axe sharpener might be achieved by having a bike crank that is mounted so a chain goes up to a pulley and arbor. You sit on a chair and peddle the bike crank (which is under the bench) and it rotates and arbour with differant pulleys. Then you can set a stones for grinding metal, have a drip can above with oil. If one was real cagey then you could hook up the derailers and change the speed. One could break this down to a trailer for a bike and peddle around and offer your services. Nothing like rocket science here.

I really have a hard time thinking it would go to a nine but some of the ideas that folks can create are often just plain smart. Bike parts will become valuable. There are those that chose living in differant ways and like crafty ways of doing things.

Another thing about the bike crank powered bench, get a flex drill cord and mount a chuck on a pulley then hook the flex cord to the chuck. This would be to handy.

This could make a thread......

-- Brian (, May 16, 1999.

In the TEOTWAWKI scenario, how likely is it for flea markets to pop up in the midst of all kinds of dangers and threats? Perhaps, large, well fortified communities might have some kind of market, but this would seem to require law enforcement, etc. Blacksmiths, woodworkers, and practical engineers would do well if their skills and tools were not appropriated as the property of the community or a feudal lord. (grin)

If our Y2K problems result in a depression that lasts several years, this would be a more fertile ground for entrepeneurs with more interesting goods and wares than boxes of matches. I imagine that the bankruptcy and bankruptcy-driven estate sales would furnish quite a bit of goods for the entrepeneur to bring to market. In that case, the entrepeneur who had cash or metal enough would be in a good position.

And if Y2K does not turn out too bad and we only have to deal with a a few weeks to a month of various disruptions, the small items may be of interest to your neighbors, but I don't know what kind of problems that will get you into. It is my impression that you would be much better off helping people freely than trying to take advantage of them (even if you only want some small profit or benefit from the deal).

Obviously, many GIs would be in a better position than DGIs. They will have a better position to take advantage of DGIs. They may even feel that the DGIs deserve such treatment. This'd be a serious mistake. However well positioned you find yourself in a disaster and however long you imagine it may go on, making enemies will be a temptation to be avoided. Expecting a few dollars for matches may be troublesome.

Sincerely, Stan Faryna

-- Stan Faryna (, May 16, 1999.

Simple barter exchange

I need a tooth pulled The community dentist agrees to pull my tooth for barter I have nothing materially he needs, what he really needs is his short-wave fixed. I cannot... but the fellow that can.. needs his refrigeration unit fixed...I can fix that so... The makings of a barter exchange exist. I'll fix the refer for neighbor Bob, Bob will fix the short-wave for the dentist and the dentist will pull my tooth. Works great until the economist shows up. He has nothing to offer but criticism about our little community.

Time goes by and our antagonistic neighbor is running out of material goods and more and more of his sustainable are breaking down. After much soul searching the community takes pity on him and offers to help if he'll just SHUT UP !

Once again, relative peace returns to the community until one day the lawyer shows up.........To be continued... maybe

Even though at one time the dentist commanded several times the earning capacity of others in the community, he realizes that each one that contributes to the health of the community is equally important, and an expert in they're own right. Especially the Elders.

-- unspun@lright (, May 16, 1999.


If our Y2K problems result in a depression that lasts several years, this would be a more fertile ground for entrepeneurs with more interesting goods and wares than boxes of matches.



I used matches as an example of scale, not to get rich buy and yes I have full confidence that humans will find a way to create wealth. If you have seen pictures of rural China they have little markets in the middle of winter in the open. They virtually live in huts rather than houses and have rarely used electricity. It is already done in the world. Of course I live in a more rural area than most on the forum so my thoughts on the matter maybe differant than those in the cities. There you would be bartering drugs, guns, and booze. I am sure a fun time would be had by all :o) Of course as stated above, a nine out of ten disaster is not that likely in my books. But know one really knows.

-- Brian (, May 16, 1999.

Bill P: Here is a link to a recent thread about barter that you may find worth a look. Mc

-- Rob Michaels (, May 16, 1999.

Loompanics ( has a section on alternative economics. Maybe also try Amazon.

Many titles (a few from my library -- I don't know if currently available or not, so browse them):
"The Only Barter Book You'll Ever Need", Matison & Mack, Bantam Books
"Getting Started in the Underground Economy", Cash, Loompanics
"Guerrilla Capitalism", Cash, Loompanics
"How to do Business off the Books", Cash, Loompanics
"How to Barter", London, Comstock Trading

Buy something, anything from Loompanics, and they'll send you a nice printed catalog, plus quarterly updates for a year. Catalog is nicely organized, and the web site, above, is coming along nicely.

-- A (, May 16, 1999.

Thanks, people.

One thing I am learning about Bartering is that it is more complicated than it appears at first blush. I'll try Amazon and Loompanics.

Maybe a barter exchange would be a good sub-committee for local Y2K/church group. It seems to me there should be some basic common sense ground rules which all parties accept prior to the barter.

-- Bill P (, May 16, 1999.


I apologize for seeming to cast dispersions on your matches. I didn't mean to zero in on matchers per se... nor did I mean to portray the act of bartering as mere profiteering. In fact, I was thinking about how some people might approach bartering with little things and how it could very well get them into trouble. Again, my humble apologies. I haven't had a lot of time to write with great care the past few days. But I'm now reminded that If I can't write with care, I'll be silent.

Sincerely, Stan Faryna

-- Stan Faryna (, May 17, 1999.

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