Even people who are not demonetarists, people who have not heard of it or who cannot conceive of a world without money, can act in today’s capitalist and market socialist societies in ways that reflect the values that a successfully demonetized society needs.
John Moffitt, formerly a guard with the Denver Broncos NFL football team, is one such person. After nine games of this season, he decided to quit the team during the Broncos’ bye week. The decision will cost him a lot of money. By quitting now. he leaves more that 1 million dollars on the table — the $312,00 in salary he will forfeit for the remainder of this season plus next season’s $750,00 in non-guaranteed money.
He also gives up the possibility of playing in the Super Bowl. The Broncos are expected to make the playoffs that lead to the Super Bowl this year. He stood to receive more money for advancing in the playoffs, and playing in the Super Bowl. A appearance in the Super Bowl would have enhanced his profile to businesses that want football players to endorse their products.
Since Moffitt’s contract would have run its course at the end of next season, why didn’t he wait to retire then? Moffitt, 27, with a 5 year-old daughter, has decided he no longer wishes to assume to risk of injury playing football. Brain injuries to football players have been in the news for the last couple of years. A class action injury case between the NFL and former players was recently settled. Last week, it was revealed that Tony Dorsett, a Hall of Fame running back who is now 59, has been diagnosed with the early symptoms of CTE, a degenerative brain disease suffered by football players who have been concussed multiple times during their playing careers. Concussions were not the only health concern. In an interview with nationally syndicated sports talk show host Dan Patrick, Moffitt said, “I blew my knee out my rookie year and also had an elbow surgery. That was part of the decision.”
So what does his decision have to do with demonetization? Moffitt told Patrick that he had lost his passion for football and that he had been contemplating other careers for several months. “It wasn’t worth the money anymore for me. I didn’t want to do it for money. I didn’t want to do that stuff just for money and I was ready to be done.”
In a demonetized society, all work, no matter how seemingly humble, will be done out of passion for the task. Fruits and vegetables will be harvested by people who understand that the health of their community rests largely on their shoulders. Likewise, the refuse collectors who clear the garbage from the street and recycle what they can will do so out of passion for keeping their community and its environment clean and healthy. Current monetary schemes devalue such important work by paying woefully little for it. A non-monetary system can give such work the respect it deserves.
Freeing people from the need to make money enables them to consider whether they are happy with what they are doing. Moffitt was quoted in a Raw Story article as saying “I’m not happy, and I think it’s really madness to risk your body, risk your well-being and risk your happiness, for money.”
Moffitt intends to pursue a career in broadcasting. “I’m sitting here and I got to this point and I was like, what is the number that you need? How much do you really need? What do you want in life? And I decided that I don’t really need to be a millionaire.”
Demonetization will make it easier for people to stop and think about the continued value, in terms other than money, of what they are doing. It will give them the opportunity to consider what they really need, rather than to just swim in the tide of corporate advertizing that invents needs we did not know we had before the ad campaigns began.
Thank you, John Moffitt, for showing people that the NFL is not all glamor, and that there are other things more important than making a lot of money. Thank you for your honesty with yourself, your team and the fans. Thank you for moving on when you were ready, not when a broken body told you it was time. You have already learned a lesson most of us have yet started to study. Have a long, healthy and happy life.
People who wish for a life without money, take note of John Moffitt’s commitment to a value we need to embody in order to achieve our goal: learning to say “Enough!”
[Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons commons.wikimedia.org]