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OpEdNews Op Eds    H1'ed 6/26/19

Facebook May Pose a Greater Danger Than Wall Street

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From Truthdig

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks at a 2014 San Francisco event in front of a screen showing one of the tech giant's early mottos,
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks at a 2014 San Francisco event in front of a screen showing one of the tech giant's early mottos, 'Move Fast and Break Things.'
(Image by (Mike Deeroski / Flickr)(CC BY 2.0))
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Payments can happen cheaply and easily without banks or credit card companies, as has already been demonstrated -- not in the United States but in China. Unlike in the U.S., where numerous firms feast on fees from handling and processing payments, in China most money flows through mobile phones nearly for free. In 2018 these cashless payments totaled a whopping $41.5 trillion; and 90% were through Alipay and WeChat Pay, a pair of digital ecosystems that blend social media, commerce and banking. According to a 2018 article in Bloomberg titled "Why China's Payment Apps Give U.S. Bankers Nightmares":

"The nightmare for the U.S. financial industry is that a technology company -- whether from China or a homegrown juggernaut such as Amazon.com Inc. or Facebook Inc. -- replicates the success of Alipay and WeChat in America. The stakes are enormous, potentially carving away billions of dollars in annual revenue from major banks and other firms."

That threat may now be materializing. On June 18, Facebook unveiled a white paper outlining ambitious plans to create a new global cryptocurrency called Libra, to be launched in 2020. Facebook reportedly has high hopes that Libra will become the foundation for a new financial system free of control by Wall Street power brokers and central banks.

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But apparently Libra will not be competing with Visa or Mastercard. In fact, the Libra Association lists those two giants among its 28 soon-to-be founding members. Others include Paypal, Stripe, Uber, Lyft and eBay. Facebook has reportedly courted dozens of financial institutions and other tech companies to join the Libra Association, an independent foundation that will contribute capital and help govern the digital currency. Entry barriers are high, with each founding member paying a minimum of $10 million to join. This gives them one vote (or 1% of the total vote, whichever is larger) "in the Libra Association council. Members are also entitled to a share proportionate to their investment of the dividends earned from interest on the Libra reserve -- the money that users will pay to acquire the Libra currency.

Needless to say, all of this has raised some eyebrows, among both financial analysts and crypto-activists. A Zero Hedge commentator calls Libra "Facebook's Crypto Trojan Rabbit." An article in The Financial Times' Alphaville calls it "Blockchain, but Without the Blocks or Chain." Economist Nouriel Roubini concurs, tweeting:

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Nouriel Roubini ✔ @Nouriel

It will start as a private, permissioned, not-trustless, centralized oligopolistic members-only club. So much for calling it "blockchain." Like all "enterprise DLT" it is blockchain in name only and an monopoly to extract massive seignorage from billions of users. A monopoly scam https:// twitter.com/coindesk/statu s/1140620454262124545 "

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Ellen Brown Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Ellen Brown is an attorney, founder of the Public Banking Institute, and author of twelve books including the best-selling WEB OF DEBT. In THE PUBLIC BANK SOLUTION, her latest book, she explores successful public banking models historically and (more...)
 

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"Facebook's Crypto Trojan Rabbit"

Appropriate! Here you've got a "cryptocurrency" that is neither crypto nor currency, really.

And, it's going to be backed by fiat money?! And, it's not going to compete with VISA or PayPal or any of the others that are apparently going to be PART of the new hierarchy?!

I wonder what Bezos will come out with shortly.

Submitted on Wednesday, Jun 26, 2019 at 6:43:00 PM

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nelswight

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OMG, Ouch.

Submitted on Wednesday, Jun 26, 2019 at 10:10:23 PM

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Richard Girard

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I would like to see them charged with fraud and seditious conspiracy against the government of the United States.

This is nothing more, and nothing less, than the first step to corporations becoming governments, ala the movies "Rollerball" and "Robocop."
Stop them now.

Submitted on Wednesday, Jun 26, 2019 at 9:57:23 PM

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If you ask me, I'd say corporations are already running the show now, and the government is just a front for them.

Submitted on Wednesday, Jun 26, 2019 at 10:59:24 PM

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Zuckerberg's ongoing demonstration of the dangers of gross wealth inequality is second only to Bezos, and this play is just more of the same. Public banking is the answer, yes, but making it happen? You see institutions like Bank of America and Wells Fargo go straight to shrieking tizzy mode over local credit unions, for heaven's sake. A vision, a path, and a strategy? I'd sign up for that.

Submitted on Thursday, Jun 27, 2019 at 1:30:05 PM

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