Saturday, 14 January 2012

Lahr counters debt in homeopathic doses

Since 25th May 2009 the Munich artist Christin Lahr has been making daily money transfers of one cent to the German Federal Ministry of Finance.

On the online banking transfer slip there is space for a maximum of 108 characters in the box marked: Reason for Payment.

Each day Lahr copies out the next 108 characters from the 3 volume text of the 39th edition of Karl Marx's "Capital: A Critique of Political Economy and crosses them off in the book. In this way the entire text of the book, approximately 1,696,500 characters, will be transmitted to the FRG over a period of 43 years.

Lahr has calculated that her 'homeopathic' donations could pay off the national debt in 300 years, due to the exponential effects of interest and compound interest, if the national debt could be frozen at the 31st May 2009 figure of € 1,746,599,197,210.

She states: Once a day, the micro-donations upset the state's balance sheet for about the length of one breath. They serve as triggers for debate.

Not included in the above calculations is the required labour and any added value for example through cultural and symbolic capital. It is better to give than to receive.

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