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Olduvai III: Catacylsm
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Voluntary Enslavement

Voluntary Enslavement

In recent years, I’ve been predicting that the governments, particularly those of the EU and US, will seek to eliminate paper currency. The objective will be to make monetary transactions between private parties as difficult as they can, by requiring that all transactions take place through financial institutions. If they can do this, they will effectively make a run on banks impossible in the future as the banks will simply shut off the money tap, as the Greek banks did. This power will additionally make negative interest rates and confiscations more possible.

A few years ago, this forecast was seen by most as poppycock, but the prelude has now begun, with most of the world’s banks disallowing large transfers and some lowering these amounts over time. Many governments are aiding the effort, requiring reporting on some transfers.

At some point, governments and banks will seek to eliminate paper currency, completing the encirclement of private party monetary transfer. From that point on, it would be illegal for any transfer of money to be undertaken except through a financial institution (most probably through the use of a plastic card or smartphone).

At about the same time as I began predicting the above, I also began forecasting what I considered to be a companion campaign against virtual currencies, such as Bitcoin. Such currencies will prove to be a threat to a bank-only transfer system as they would provide an alternate method of payment between private parties – one that does not come under the control of any government. Governments and financial institutions will therefore seek to eliminate virtual currencies, or make them too difficult to use.

The greatest weakness inherent in virtual currencies, in my view, is that they’re intangible. Unlike precious metals which, once physically possessed, exist forever, virtual currencies exist only as an idea. Like all fiat currencies, they have value only as long as two parties continue to have faith in their value.

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