Bad thoughts wrote:
My bigger problem with economics as portrayed in the show is not how people are incentivized to work (some minimum that gets power to the household replicator), but that it says little about consumer choices. It's been shown many times that people have tastes that cannot be satisfied by the replicator. Who gets to eat at Siskos? Where does Riker get real eggs? Why should Quark stock yammuk sauce? Why should someone hold onto antique spectacles?
I should hope centuries from now we've stopped identifying ourselves as consumers, and ditched consumer culture entirely.
In the absence of government-issued money, a bartering system would probably develop, maybe even involving an unofficial currency (perhaps that's what credits are?). I would imagine Grandpa Sisko reserves some seats for people who provide him with fresh ingredients, and the rest are first-come, first serve.
There will always be goods and services to trade that you can't replicate, land and time being the main things that come to mind. People will always want to trade. That doesn't mean they will continue to devote their entire lives to money and material acquisition.