I've always seen, read and understood the Federation to be a cashless society with some other form of economy where everyone isn't driven by the accumulation of wealth. I''m fairly certain at least one character basically said almost those same exact words. That being said, I often read things in the novels that seem to conflict with that ideal. In David Mack's recent, and excellent I might add, Collateral Damage, there were at least a couple of mentions of what I would consider "money", whether it is a real physical item or just credits. In Chapter 8 I read "Raising the capital had not been easy on a Starfleet warrant officer’s salary." Capital? Salary? What is this? And in Chapter 18 I read "Bajoran woman who was two years shy of her Starfleet pension;" Why would she need a pension? Both of these seem to refer to some sort of "money" based economy, and David is far from the first author to do so. So, is the Federation truly a cashless society or not? Convince me.