State wealth control is tightening as the war on cash worsens...
BACK in 2008, I began warning of increasing capital controls that we would see in the future, as a component in the decline of Western economies (Western in the broad sense, including Japan, Australia, etc.) writes Jeff Thomas for Doug Casey's International Man newsletter.
Along the way, it occurred to me that, at some point, governments might collectively attempt to eliminate paper currency in favour of an electronic currency – transferred from party to party solely through licensed banks.
Sound farfetched? Well, maybe, but what if the US and EU agreed on an overall plan, then suggested it to other governments?
On the face of it, this smacks of conspiracy theory, yet certainly, all governments would benefit from this control and would be likely to get on board. In fact, it might prove to be the only way out of their present economic problems.
So, how would it play out? Here's roughly how I saw Phase I:
- Link the free movement of cash to terrorism (Create a consciousness that any movement of large sums suggests criminal activity.);
- Establish upper limits on the amount of money that can be moved without reporting to some government investigatory agency;
- Periodically lower those limits;
- Accustom people to making all purchases, however small or large, through a bank card;
- Create a consciousness that the mere possession of cash is suspect, since it's no longer "necessary".
When I first wrote on the subject, there was considerable criticism as to the possibility that such a programme would ever be attempted, let alone succeed. And, granted, it was so Orwellian that it was understandably seen as a crackpot idea.
But since that time, the programme has been developing extremely rapidly. In the last six months alone, it has become so visible that it has even garnered a name – "the War on Cash".
References in the media have been made that terrorist groups fund their attacks with cash. Dozens of countries have placed limits on the maximum amount of money that can be moved without reporting. Some, notably France, have already begun lowering their limits. Banks in some countries, notably Sweden, are already treating all cash transactions as suspicious. The previously theoretical Phase I is now well under way.
This issue has expanded more quickly than I'd anticipated. Clearly, the governments that are forcing it into being are running out of time. There can only be one reason why they'd rush a programme that normally would be given more time for people to accept, and that's that they see a crash coming before they can get Phase II of the programme underway.
Although most anyone who's paying attention recognises that Phase I is in motion, Phase II (as I perceive it) is not yet on the radar, but I believe it will be soon. Phase II will be the second wave of measures and they will be more draconian than Phase I:
- Create a definitive false flag event that demonstrates how physical cash is the primary means of funding evil acts in the world;
- Declare a date on which paper currency will become illegal (Until that date, it can be deposited into a bank. After that date, it becomes criminal to possess it.);
- Once all cash has been deposited in banks, increase negative interest rates;
- Confiscation of deposits can then be implemented, as desired, by banks (Confiscation of deposits is already legal in Canada, the US, and the EU.);
- Confiscate contents of selected safe deposit boxes;
- End "voluntary" taxation. All taxation will, in future, be by direct debit;
- Declare money to be the property of the State that issued it. (The people are allowed to trade in it, but it is not truly theirs. The State therefore can freeze or confiscate the funds in any account, if any crime is "suspected".)
In recent months, I've warned repeatedly that, since confiscations of deposits will take place, we must assume that banks will additionally raid safe deposit boxes, as stated in the above list. Some banks, beginning with JPMorgan Chase, have placed limits on what forms of wealth can be placed in safe deposit boxes. Since then, Greece has taken this one step further. In future, Greek citizens will be required to declare cash exceeding €15,000, jewellery and precious stones valued at over €30,000 and declare the location of the safe deposit box in which they're stored.
The declaration is fraught with difficulties for the depositor, as he bears the obligation to accurately appraise each item. Should authorities disagree with the appraisal of, say, Grandma's diamond brooch, the depositor would be suspect and may face confiscation.
Once Phase II is completed, state wealth control will exist. And, again, this prediction will seem at first glance to be Orwellian – a mere fiction. But then, less than a year ago, the War on Cash was regarded by only a few as being even within the realm of possibility, let alone right around the corner. And so it is with Phase II. Now that Phase I is in motion, it's accepted as an unsettling reality, but Phase II is the obvious sequel.
If you have cash in a bank, you think of it as your own. This is not the case. It's wealth that you've loaned to the bank. In the future, the bank (with governmental approval) will have the power to decide if and when they will return all, or a part, of that cash to you. They will set the rules as to how that decision will be arrived at and those rules will be changed periodically. Since those rules will be arrived at by the banks (without need for your consent), the outcome will most certainly not be in your favour.
Those who read this statement might react in one of three ways:
"This can't be happening."
"Okay, it's happening, but there's nothing I can do about it. It's global."
"There must be something I can do to keep from being robbed."
The first group will be the largest. They will freeze up, do little or nothing, and become victims. The second group may complain and even struggle a bit against these developments, but won't prepare sufficiently and, ultimately, will also become victims.
The third group will seek alternatives, and here's where the light appears at the end of the tunnel. Yes, this effort will be international, but it won't be fully global. There will be those jurisdictions that, traditionally, have not been willing to fall into line with the world's foremost powers. They will not wish to go off the same cliff as the others and will take a different tack. They will be the recipients of those people who seek to escape the collapsing system. But, more than ever before, time is limited; the window is clearly closing.
The solution is surprisingly simple, although it will take work and dedication.
If you're a resident of any jurisdiction that's presently going down this road, move your money to a jurisdiction that has a consistent history for stable government, low (or no) direct taxation, and minimal interference or regulation over wealth.
Convert your wealth into those forms of assets that are hardest for rapacious governments to confiscate (foreign-held precious metals and real estate). Create an exit plan for your own physical escape, should it become necessary.
The War on Cash and negative interest rates are radical and insane measures. I believe they are a sign of desperation, and also pose huge threats to your financial security. Central planners are playing with fire and inviting a currency catastrophe.