by Claire Bernish, Activist Post:
In the most far-reaching move toward a cashless society to date, the European Commission proposed enforcing “restrictions on payments in cash” under an all-too-familiar premise — because terrorism.
“Payments in cash are widely used in the financing of terrorist activities,” the Commission’s proposal states. “In this context, the relevance of potential upper limits to cash payments could also be explored. Several Member States have in place prohibitions for cash payments above a specific threshold.”
On the heels of the European Central Bank’s discontinuation of the €500 note, the Commission’s plan would drastically scale back civilians’ ability to conduct transactions using currency — and, by default, will allow banks and the State further means to track individuals via bank cards.
According to the Commission’s Inception Impact Assessment,
Cash has the important feature of offering anonymity to transactions. Such anonymity may be desired for legitimate reason (e.g. protection of privacy). But, such anonymity can also be misused for money laundering and terrorist financing purposes. The possibility to conduct large cash payments facilitates money laundering and terrorist financing activities because of the difficulty to control cash payment transactions.
In other words, because criminals and terrorists use paper currency, the ability for law-abiding citizens to conduct anonymous transactions with cash must be curtailed. For any number of reasons — not the least of which is the laughable presumption terrorists would just walk into a store and purchase big ticket tools of the trade — this assessment fails the sniff test.
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