A former Bank of England economist has called for a total ban on cash and its replacement with credit accounts controlled directly by governments.
In a column for the London Telegraph, fund manager Jim Leaviss all but advocates economic fascism as a means of enabling authorities to respond to financial crises better by implementing a “cashless society.”
“Forcing everyone to spend only by electronic means from an account held at a government-run bank would give the authorities far better tools to deal with recessions and economic booms,” states the introduction to Leaviss’ article.
If you think that sounds authoritarian enough, it gets worse. Leaviss then suggests that your hard earned money be “monitored, or even directly controlled by the government,” with authorities then working to “encourage us to spend more when the economy slows, or spend less when it is overheating.”
Once wonders what form this ‘encouragement’ will take. A tax on bank deposits? Negative interest on savings? Limits on how much you can spend each month?
That’s precisely what Leaviss advocates when he calls for a “transaction tax” that would penalize people for spending their own money.
Under this system, commercial banks would stop taking any money from depositors, instead relying on central banks to provide all their funds. The black market would also cease to exist.
“If notes and coins were abolished and the only way to hold money was through a government-controlled bank, there would be no escape,” writes Leaviss, who presumably embarked on a fit of demonic cackling after he penned those words.
Leaviss’ column echoes the sentiments of Citi’s Willem Buiter, who recently advocated abolishing cash altogether in order to “solve the world’s central banks’ problem with negative interest rates”.
After Leaviss began to catch heat for his article, he locked his Twitter account and blocked his face.
The war on cash is intensifying as the establishment seeks more ways to erode the last true bastion of financial anonymity and independence.
Last month, JPMorgan Chase customers received letters informing them that the bank will no longer allow cash to be stored in safety deposit boxes. The bank also instituted a new policy which, “restricts borrowers from using cash to make payments on credit cards, mortgages, equity lines, and auto loans.”
Depositing and withdrawing moderately large amounts of cash is also being treated as a suspicious activity worthy of law enforcement involvement by some banks.
Back in March, we reported on how the Justice Department is ordering bank employees to consider calling the cops on customers who withdraw $5,000 dollars or more.
Also in March, French Finance Minister Michel Sapin hailed the introduction of measures set to come into force in September which will restrict French citizens from making cash payments over €1,000 euros.