Wealth = Innovation + Raw Resources + Labor
Gold worked as "money" because it was wealth based; not because it was rare, shiny, heavy or had an interesting color, but because one had to work in order for it to exist. It is described as "a store of wealth." One had to use the formula above to create it. It was newly created wealth. That newly created wealth was then spent into our economy, debt free.
That's also why silver worked; as well as sea shells, coffee beans, furs or tobacco. They were all examples of wealth based money - not simply barter, but used for money. So, you see, we don't have to use gold to have a wealth based money system. But we must use the same principals.
There are other methods of wealth creation that could "back" or support our money system today, using the same principals that made gold work, and bring prosperity to our nation - instead of unpayable, compounding debt and interest payments.