What if we flip it and reverse it: what if, rather than trust merely making money more functional in a economy, it’s money that adds nice-to-have properties to trust?
If we think of money in its simplest form as an “IOU” for goods or services rendered, it’s in fact completely possible in a high trust environment to do without slips of paper representing debts owed.
We often do this with friends: rather than them handing us money in the moment, or a slip of paper representing a debt, we just assume they’re “good for it” and they eventually “get us back.” This is trust in action.
Money is the technology that turns these informal, one-to-one arrangements into something that is fungible, transferable, and concrete. But without the underlying validity of the original IOU-ness of the monetary token, the network built on top is meaningless and worthless.