Do you know the balloon of Male Choir Karrespoor, a choir from Overijssel? In 1996 it was the largest balloon in the Netherlands. Because of its size it can only fly when the weather is ideal. The balloon was planned to be a little smaller but because of miscommunication between the Dutch client and the English builder, centimeters and inches were swapped.
During a walk on a holiday in Sweden I suddenly remembered this story. The fact is that the consistent use of a standard decreases the risk of a Babylonian confusion of tongues. And sometimes you think of the use of a standard such as the meter so obvious that it seems inconceivable that others count something like inches, for example. Or, since my arrival in Sweden; I can not imagine the Swedes paying their groceries with Swedish Kroner instead of euros. That is something we remember from a while back; having to remember the rate of exchange, having to calculate the price of a bread in euros and having to take care that you are not screwed over by a bad exchange rate when you pay with euros.
Harm in the euro region
At the moment there is much harm being done in all the countries that use the euro as a joint currency. Long ago, agreements have been made about the euro, but not enough. I think a portion of the agreements was consciously omitted. Sometimes delay is a fine strategy to get the extra agreements done later. The involved government leaders and their electorate were, and still are the famous croaking frogs that have to go somewhere together in a wheelbarrow. Either through the political left or right, the current problems will likely be solved.
The euro provides ease for reporting and consolidating.
Hopefully the euro will remain as the monetary unit for as many countries as possible. Since the euro is not just convenient for the daily groceries. The valuing and reporting of your financial position is much easier. Without the euro you would need to check against which rate of exchange at what moment you would have to convert to your reporting unit for every single amount. And with a bit of bad luck that amount is subdivided into multiple units, all of which need to be calculated separately. For example, principal sum, interest and possible fine. Because the funding can be spread over time, each with a different exchange rate. And in the case of the fine you would not even know if and when it would occur. It will get impossible to completely cover a currency risk.
If all the positions have been standardized in euros, then some of those reporting issues are no longer relevant. By that I do not mean standardization by withdrawing in one’s own small economy, but rather by making optimal use of the strong aspects of every country. Through standardization of one single currency you can report and consolidate faster, better and with more transparency. Then you can also stay away from complex functions of for example Invantive Estate. And better reports will eventually lead to better decisions and more welfare. Regardless of the other advantages of the euro, this is why I hope the euro is maintained.
And then? All we have to do then is to get the United Kingdom to start using the metric system as well. And of course the Male Choir Karrespoor will be able to order a new balloon without a worry.