No wonder people seek the privacy of owning precious metals!
This is an update to our commentary two weeks ago in which we described the Biden administration’s total financial surveillance as becoming quite serious.
“Not only is Big Brother watching you,” we wrote, “he is also getting bigger every day. “
In its most recent budget proposal, the US Treasury Department has proposed requiring financial institutions to report to it money coming into or going out of accounts of only $600 or more.
Politifact describes the proposal this way: “If you had at least $600 in your bank account, the bank would be required to report the amounts of any debits or credits to that account to the IRS. If the debits and credits that flow through the account add up to at least $600 — including deposited paychecks or electronic payments through smartphone apps tied to the account — those totals would have to be reported, too.”
The government already makes intrusive and burdensome demands under the Bank Secrecy Act, including so-called “suspicious persons reports” to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network.
The IRS has a history of failing to protect private information. It has a history of data breaches and the illicit use of its records on citizens. The new rules threaten to expose people to more abuses before its prior abuses have been addressed.
The State ceaselessly lobbies for wider snooping authority, camouflaging its efforts as something essential to “get drug dealers” and other criminals. But in practice the measures allow illicit snooping on people who are acting prudently in trying to keep their affairs private in an era of identity theft, widespread account hacking, and data breaches. Meanwhile, the drug crisis that the measures are said to address simply get bigger each year. In 2020, US fentanyl deaths jumped 30 percent from the year before, to 93,000, while the border which those drugs enter the country remains porous.
The proposed new measures are another addition to the government’s war on cash, an attempt to have veto power over individual autonomy. It is another tool in creating a “social credit system” like that in China in which the people are made to acquiesce to actions of the State and in which dissent is quashed.
In addition, the Treasury’s proposal adds substantial burdens on businesses, making them bear the additional expense of endless petty record keeping and reporting.
Yet even as the authorities hope to increase their surveillance of the people, their own ranks grow thick with abuse. Only recently have we learned that the president of the Dallas Fed, Robert Kaplan, with firsthand knowledge of, and hands-on influence over non-public, market-moving policies, was nevertheless speculating to the tune of tens of millions of dollars of individual stocks and highly leveraged financial instruments.
We know as well that Fed chairman Jerome Powell owned the same type of municipal bonds that the Fed was driving higher by purchasing them in the open market.
The stench of cronyism, corruption, and plain, ordinary mismanagement wafts from the decaying monetary system even as it grows more intrusive by the hour.
No wonder informed people are moving assets out of it and into gold and silver.