Don’t have much time to go further into it, but I think you’ve pointed at something important here: cooperative (or heck, even competitive) economy advancements only work when immersed within a social context. I think there’s been reason for failure of a number of mainstream cryptocurrency initiatives to take off, but that’s one reason. Integrating in such a way that supporting each other is easier over our networks is good.
The sugar and babysitting example doesn’t necessarily need financial tools, can be done directly simply by a message. However, it is empowering to have a generalized way of exchanging services and goods in the abstract… there’s a reason currency reappears everywhere, even where technically forbidden (eg cigarettes traded in prisons as currency)… it’s useful to hold onto something where you have a lot of freedom to exchange for a number of things. The general assumption though is that these kinds of general abstract currencies have to be in large scale, trustless systems. I brought up the mutual aid network as an example where it’s small scale but high-trust communities.
As another way of pointing to this, there’s a lot of people I’d like to be able to more easily support, as artists, musicians, software authors, etc. It’s currently very hard to do so in most systems… if we can make it easy, and leave a lot of freedom for communities to decide what kinds of economic systems they would like to settle on that work for them, then we can do a lot of good I think.