Monday, February 22, 2016
Have you heard that there may be a move afoot to ban
large-denomination bills, like the C-note? I hadn't until I ran across
in the New York Sun, which explains that this -- like lots of
other bad ideas -- is being suggested as an anti-terrorism
[Lawrence] Summers wrote up his idea in the Washington Post, touting a proposal from a think tank he directs. It wants the Europeans to stop issuing new 500-euro notes and America its hundreds -- and maybe even withdraw such notes already in circulation.The Sun's Seth Lipsky chides the Democrats for being "out of ideas," but he doesn't go far enough, as his own analysis suggests:
This, Mr. Summers suggests, is justified because these denominations -- and Portraits of Grant (meaning 50s) -- are being used by criminals and terrorists. In "certain circles," Mr. Summers says, the 500-euro marker is known as the "bin Laden."
That strikes me as an unconvincing argument, particularly from the Democrats. They have withdrawn from nigh every front in the war on Islamic terror. They don't want to name our enemies or even call our struggle a war. [format edits]
It's the financial equivalent of gun control. When criminals use guns the Democrats want to take guns from law-abiding citizens. When terrorists use hundreds, the liberals [sic] want to deny the rest of us the Benjamins.Whether an individual supporter of such measures is crippled by precautionary thinking or has more sinister motives, the result is the same: individual rights get trampled in the name of protecting individuals. Lipsky goes on to allege that this proposal is part of a broader movement to get rid of cash, which makes sense, considering such motivations. This is disturbing, if true, but would really only complete what FDR -- who one might think founded our country, to hear Bernie Sanders speak -- started when he took the dollar off the gold standard.
For the same reasons Lipsky cites as he speculates about this idea -- that such a move would further enable the government to meddle with the affairs of individuals -- we should work to extricate the government from money and the banking system altogether. Not only should we resist such a move, we also need to turn the tide on the government's whole de facto war on money.
Today: Corrected "Your" to read "York" in name of paper.