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Your Bitcoin is NOT Anonymous: IRS Moves To Track Bitcoiners With New Chain Analysis Tools

Your Bitcoin is NOT Anonymous: IRS Moves To Track Bitcoiners With New Chain Analysis Tools

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Last month Alt-Market.com founder Brandon Smith warned that Bitcoin may not be all that it’s cracked up to be in terms of its purported anonymity:

For years, one of the major original selling points of bitcoin was that it was “anonymous.” It always surprised me that so many people in the liberty movement bought into this scam. Surely after the revelations exposed by Edward Snowden and organizations like Wikileaks, it is utterly foolish to believe that anything in the digital world is truly “anonymous.” The feds have been proving there is no anonymity, even in bitcoin, for some time, as multiple arrests using bitcoin tracking have indeed occurred when the FBI decided it was in their interest. Meaning, when the feds want to track bitcoin transactions, they can, and it does not matter how well the people involved covered their actions.

Because every transaction exists on a public blockchain ledger, an enterprising organization – say like the NSA or IRS – could conceivably implement blockchain analysis tools to track down Bitcoin fund transfers around the globe. These days most bitcoin transactions are originated on “trusted” exchanges that exist in Western nations, where governments have always found new and innovative ways to ensure citizens have no privacy whatsoever, especially when it comes to personal finances. This means that there is more than likely a record of your original Bitcoin transaction, perhaps involving a credit card or bank transfer, and if regulators ask an exchange to turn over the information you can bet they’ll do so in order to avoid unwanted government scrutiny. Moreover, most exchanges now require a driver’s license, passport and even a phone number in order to approve your account for trading.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The War on Cash Destroys a Small Entrepreneur

The War on Cash Destroys a Small Entrepreneur

Lyndon McClellan is a small entrepreneurwho owns and operates L & M Convenience Mart in Fairmont, North Carolina.  L & M comprises a gas station, convenience store, and a small restaurant serving hot dogs, hamburgers, and catfish sandwiches.  One day last July, more than a dozen federal, state and local law enforcement agents swarmed Mr. McClellan’s business, including agents from the FBI and the North Carolina Alcohol and Law Enforcement agency—and they were “asking” for him.  When Mr. McClellan arrived, he was escorted by two federal agents into his stock room for a private chat.  The agents showed him paperwork indicating that he had made two cash deposits totaling $11,400 within a 24-hour period in his bank account at the Lumbee Guarantee Bank.  They informed him that the papers also indicated that he had a history of “consistent cash deposits” of less than  $10,000, which was a violation of the the Federal law against “structuring.”  They also informed him that the IRS had seized all of the $107,702.66 in L & M’s bank account.

What Mr McClellan did not know was that it was against the law to make cash deposits of less than $10,000.  Banks are legally obligated to report any deposit of more than $10,000 to the U.S. Treasury Department.  But if an individual makes several cash deposits of less than $10,000 over an unspecified period of time that total more than $10,000, then he is presumed to be a money launderer or drug trafficker who is committing the dastardly crime of structuring, that is, seeking to circumvent the bank’s reporting requirement and maintaining the privacy of his financial affairs Thus banks are also required to file “suspicious activity reports” on cash deposits of less than $10,000.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

 

 

The War on Cash: Transparently Totalitarian

The War on Cash: Transparently Totalitarian

George Orwell once wrote “If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face—forever.”

Not exactly a cheery thought, and one I don’t agree with.

While the forces pushing for centralization of power have been prevailing for decades, they haven’t won a total victory yet. Technologies that empower the individual and that tend toward decentralization—including the Internet, encryption, 3D printing, and cryptocurrencies—offer a powerful ray of hope, reasons to be optimistic about the future.

So the tug of war between the collectivists and the rest of us continues.

One thing that would tip the scales heavily in favor of the collectivists would be victory in the War on Cash. Their goal is to eliminate the use of hand-to-hand currency, so that governments can document, control, and tax everything.

It’s exactly like what Ron Paul said: “The cashless society is the IRS’s dream: total knowledge of, and control over, the finances of every single American.”

One way they are waging the War on Cash is to lower the threshold at which reporting a cash transaction is mandatory or at which paying in cash is simply illegal. In just the last few years…

  • Italy made cash transactions over €1,000 illegal;
  • Switzerland has proposed banning cash payments in excess of 100,000 francs;
  • Russia banned cash transactions over $10,000;
  • Spain banned cash transactions over €2,500;
  • Mexico made cash payments of more than 200,000 pesos illegal;
  • Uruguay banned cash transactions over $5,000; and
  • France made cash transactions over €1,000 illegal, down from the previous limit of €3,000.

I recently spoke about this with Dr. Joe Salerno, an Austrian economist with the Mises Institute. Joe is the best chronicler of the global War on Cash and is here to offer an Austrian rebuttal to the economic nonsense peddled by advocates of this war.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Money Printing And The Bane Of Financial Engineering—–How The Biggest LBO In History Blew-Up

Money Printing And The Bane Of Financial Engineering—–How The Biggest LBO In History Blew-Up

Financial engineering is one of the worst ills perpetuated by the Fed’s regime of cheap debt and money market subsidies for speculation. And these deformations are turbo-charged by the tax code which creates a powerful bias toward loading capital structures with tax deductible debt, and to delivering returns as lightly taxed capital gains rather than ordinary income.  In fact, stock buybacks and LBOs are the bastard offspring of the IRS and Federal Reserve.

Indeed, it would be safe to say that in an honest free market with a neutral tax regime, LBOs in particular would be as rare as a white buffalo. That’s because they inherently cause waste, inefficiency and malinvestment—–the opposite of market driven results.  These deadweight losses to society are, in turn, the product of a symbiotic arrangement of convenience between an avaristic breed of money manger——private equity funds—–and institutional investors, such as pension funds and insurance companies, which have a desperate need for yield in a financial system where returns on conventional fixed income securities are systematically repressed by the central bank.

Private equity managers are tax-enabled speculators. Their winnings come in the form of a 20% carried interest on the thin slice of equity at the bottom of an LBO capital structure. This 20% share of the return earned by the limited partners (LPs), who actually put up the money and bear the extreme risk of being pinned under a mountain of debt, might arguably be considered generous. But there is no way that it should be considered a capital gain. It is nothing more than the service fee earned for managing other people’s money.

 

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

How the IRS and Department of Homeland Security are Expanding Undercover Work (IRS Agents Can Even Pose as Clergy) | Liberty Blitzkrieg

How the IRS and Department of Homeland Security are Expanding Undercover Work (IRS Agents Can Even Pose as Clergy) | Liberty Blitzkrieg.

Those guidelines apply only to the law enforcement agencies overseen by the Justice Department. Within the Treasury Department, undercover agents at the I.R.S., for example, appear to have far more latitude than do those at many other agencies. I.R.S. rules say that, with prior approval, “an undercover employee or cooperating private individual may pose as an attorney, physician, clergyman or member of the news media.”

Across the federal government, undercover work has become common enough that undercover agents sometimes find themselves investigating a supposed criminal who turns out to be someone from a different agency, law enforcement officials said. In a few situations, agents have even drawn their weapons on each other before realizing that both worked for the federal government.

– From the New York Times article: More Federal Agencies Are Using Undercover Operations

If this article doesn’t prove to you without a shadow of a doubt what the prosecutorial priorities of the U.S. federal government are I don’t know what will. I have been railing for years on this site about how the rule of law is dead and buried in the USA. How the “justice” system is targeting average citizens for non crimes, while allowing the large financial criminals responsible for destroying the global economy to get off on DPAs, or deferred prosecution agreements originally crafted to deal with juveniles (see: The U.S. Department of Justice Handles Banker Criminals Like Juvenile Offenders…Literally).

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

“They Just Want The Money!” The IRS Can Now Seize Accounts On Suspicion Alone | Zero Hedge

“They Just Want The Money!” The IRS Can Now Seize Accounts On Suspicion Alone | Zero Hedge.

How can this happen?” Ms. Hinders said in a recent interview. “Who takes your money before they prove that you’ve done anything wrong with it?”

The federal government does.

*  *  *

The topic of civil asset forfeiture has been high on our agenda recently as federal ‘agents’ discover how to steal Americans’ hard-earned cash with zero repurcussions , and decide unilaterally how much cash a ‘common man’ is allowed to carry; but as The NY Times reports, the escalation to The IRS brings a whole new world of possibilities with regard asset confiscation based on no actual crime being proved…

As The NY Times reports,

For almost 40 years, Carole Hinders has dished out Mexican specialties at her modest cash-only restaurant. For just as long, she deposited the earnings at a small bank branch a block away – until last year, when two tax agents knocked on her door and informed her that they had seized her checking account, almost $33,000.

The Internal Revenue Service agents did not accuse Ms. Hinders of money laundering or cheating on her taxes — in fact, she has not been charged with any crime. Instead, the money was seized solely because she had deposited less than $10,000 at a time, which they viewed as an attempt to avoid triggering a required government report.

Her money was seized under an increasingly controversial area of law known as civil asset forfeiture, which allows law enforcement agents to take property they suspect of being tied to crime even if no criminal charges are filed. Law enforcement agencies get to keep a share of whatever is forfeited.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

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