Meet Daniel Suelo: The Man Who Gave Up Money

Twelve years ago, Daniel Suelo left his last $30 in a payphone and walked off into the desert. Daniel had decided that money was “an illusion” and no longer wanted to be a part of the capitalist financial system. So he decided to live off the grid — way off the grid — surviving off of foraged food, roadkill and the kindnesses of friends and strangers. He set up camp in a cave in the Utah wilderness, but also began blogging — because even though he wanted to live without money, he also wanted to stay connected to his fellow humans.

His friend Mark Sundeen caught wind of Daniel’s plan, and was originally none too enthused. But the financial crisis of 2008 changed Sundeen’s perspective. “I thought maybe he had a point. If your house was worth almost $500,000 one day, and $300,000 the next day, what happened to that $200,000? What was that money in the first place?”

I’m not necessarily saying that everyone get their cave on, but I do think that Sundeen does have a point when he says that “If everyone lived like the average American, the world would actually collapse a lot sooner than if everyone lived like Suelo.” At the same time, Suelo may have given up paying, but he hasn’t completely given up the monetary system. Having other people pay for things for you isn’t the same thing as completely dropping out of society.

In any case, it’s an interesting example of a truly alternative lifestyle. [Boing Boing]