There is an interesting programme from Renegade Inc (27 minutes) with the South African, Brett Scott who is ‘an author and financial activist’.
I suggest that he has various insights:
First that the cashless society is definitely not for the benefit of individuals but rather for corporations and banks.
Second the ‘war on cash’ is actually an institutional desire. If it ends up as normal it will give private banking even more power.
Indeed the so called ‘fintech’ disruptive companies are, a miscategorisation as they are actually ‘disrupting’ their sector by using the same methods in a very slightly different way and thus reinforcing finance itself.
Even when dressed up differently, consolidating financial power and preserving financial extraction is still the name of the game.
Of course finance has long been close to government – peddling the idea that without their ‘skills’ government would be impossible and this is promoted by their long standing lobbying…
Thus even when the banks have the power to create money they understand that when government is handing it out, the important thing is to be at the front of the queue – something they achieved with both Quantitative Easing and with Coronavirus Loans.
Brett Scott also thought that the monopoly issuance of money should be addressed.
That set me thinking. Why is money creation in nations always centralised? Presumably because it keeps the power centralised too. The finance sector, with their government sanctioned power to create money keeps government close by giving jobs to politicians and ex politicians.
But shouldn’t other people be similarly licensed to create money?
What about local councils? They have the power to collect tax so why couldn’t they spend money into existence just like central government?
The regressive and inflexible council tax would have to be reformed – probably in favour of a Land Value Tax and perhaps there should be regional committees to check on inflation.
But the more and more I think of it, allowing local government to create money as it spends would properly devolve power to the locality.
What’s is not to like?