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The Winners And Losers Of A Cashless Society

Courtesy of: The Money Project

 

There is a global push by lawmakers to eliminate the use of physical cash around the world. This movement is often referred to as “The War on Cash”, and there are three major players involved:

1. The Initiators
Who?
Governments, central banks.
Why?
The elimination of cash will make it easier to track all types of transactions – including those made by criminals.

2. The Enemy
Who?
Criminals, terrorists
Why?
Large denominations of bank notes make illegal transactions easier to perform, and increase anonymity.

3. The Crossfire
Who?
Citizens
Why?
The coercive…

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How Much Wealth Accumulated In Ten Seconds

The numbers are astounding, and hopefully help to create perspective on the scale of technology and business.  In just 10 seconds, close to 225,000 GB of data is transferred, with over 500,000 posts on Facebook, 57,000 tweets, 46,000 searches on Google, and 2 million messages sent on WhatsApp. 

There is no question that the most profound factor affecting modern life is the ability to replicate and store data at almost no cost. This revolution in information has provided us with a wealth of benefits and possibilities for an incredibly low marginal price.

At zero cost, we can connect to a global store of all human knowledge. New apps with impressive features can cost less than a dollar, and our monthly Netflix subscriptions hardly register on our credit card statements. Meanwhile, we share our thoughts about the world with our friends and family at no cost through social…

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S&P on Income Inequality, Education, Jobs and Taxes

The topic of income inequality and its effects has been the subject of countless analysis stretching back generations and crossing geopolitical boundaries. Despite the tendency to speak about this issue in moral terms, the central questions are economic ones: Would the U.S. economy be better off with a narrower income gap? And, if an unequal distribution of income hinders growth, which solutions could do more harm than good, and which could make the economic pie bigger for all?

Given the decades--indeed, centuries--of debate on this subject, it comes as no surprise that the answers are complex. A degree of inequality is to be expected in any market economy. It can keep the economy functioning effectively, incentivizing investment and expansion--but too much inequality can undermine growth.

Higher levels of income inequality increase political pressures, discouraging trade, investment, and hiring. Keynes first showed that income inequality can lead affluent households…

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The Cost of Robbing Peter To Pay Paul

The government now has a greater command over the nation’s resources. But it is equally obvious that no one can raise revenue without someone else bearing the cost. To deny it would imply revenues could be raised for free, which would imply that wealth could be created by printing more money........ So now we know we have a slightly better understanding of who pays: whoever is furthest away from the newly created money. And we have a better understanding of how they pay: through a reduction in their own spending power.

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