According to the most recent data, Visa — which is mostly owned by banks–accounts for over 50 percent of all credit card transactions and 70 percent of all debit card transactions in the world. Hundreds of billions in transactions process through Visa’s databases every year and this number continues to grow.
By: Matt Agorist
This article first appeared at FreeThoughtProject
Despite their overwhelming increase in market share, cards issued, and overall total volume, Visa has made a recent move that shows they intend to completely snub out their most unaccountable, untraceable, and most liberty-associated competitor and means of payment–cash.
In a news release, ostensibly written as an attempt to “help small businesses,” Visa announced that they are launching “a major effort to encourage businesses to go cashless. Aiming to create a culture where cash is no longer king, the program will give merchants increased ability to accept all forms of global digital payments.”
“At Visa, we believe you can be everywhere you want to be, and that it should be easy to pay and be paid in more ways than ever — whether it’s a phone, card, wearable or other device,” Jack Forestell, Visa’s head of global merchant solutions, said in a statement. “We have an incredible opportunity to educate merchants and consumers alike on the effectiveness of going cashless.”
Laughably, Visa claims that companies who stop accepting cash — a major form of payment for people around the globe — that they could increase profits.
Apparently, they want business owners to forget that they take upwards of five percent of every single transaction.
“The important thing to realize is that going with ‘fast and easy’ is not always the best and most cost effective,” Marco Carabjo, a credit expert, wrote in a 2013 U.S. Small Business Administration blog post.
“Typical merchant account companies can charge up to 5 percent of everything a company earns with prices consisting of merchant processing costs, gateway fees, interchange costs, Visa, MasterCard, American Express charges, statement fees and so on.”
Outside of the obvious reason of convincing businesses to go cashless so they can tax their sales into oblivion by creating a monopoly on accepting payments, the implications for control and surveillance are far more insidious.
Visa — just like government — wants to monitor your spending habits and use that data to exploit humanity. This is why governments and banks across the world have almost simultaneously launched a war on cash.
Earlier this year, the European Commission proposed enforcing “restrictions on payments in cash” under an all-too-familiar premise — 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.”
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.”
Just before the EU’s announcement of their war on cash, Citibank announced similar moves and stated it will no longer accept cash deposits or deal in cash.
Citibank Australia’s head of retail bank Janine Copelin offered an explanation saying, “We have seen a steady decline in the demand for cash services in our branches — in fact, less than 4% of Citi customers have used this service in the last 12 months.” The company stated it will no longer handle currency as a result.
“This move to cashless branches reflects Citi’s commitment to digital banking and we are investing in the channels our customers prefer to use…While the number of customers visiting our branches to access cash handling services has fallen, the branch network remains an important component of how we serve our high-net-worth customers,” said Copelin.
As Mises Institute professor, Joseph Salerno predicted in 2015, the war on cash is an inevitable move by big banks and the State. “I think this could come in the next couple of years. If they have to bail out the financial system again…they’ll block the cash in the banks to prevent it from escaping and destabilizing these fractional reserve banks,” Salerno said in an interview with Ron Paul.
It appears that the Trump administration has already been preparing for this move by filling the swamp with Goldman Sachs execs and essentially remaining silent on his campaign promise to audit the Federal Reserve.
Make no mistake, when governments and banks control and monitor 100 percent of what you spend, tyranny has set in. If ever there was a time to start investing in crypto currency and precious metals, it is now.
This article first appeared at FreeThoughtProject