(DFN) The government of Australia plans to make cash payments over $10,000 AUD ($7,500 USD) illegal starting on July 1 2019. Afterwards, all payments over that amount will have to be made via check or debit/credit card.
The Aussie government cites criminal activity, tax evasion, and “encouraging the transition to a digital society” as reasons for its ban. Treasurer Scott Morrison, said “[t]his will be bad news for criminal gangs, terrorists and those who are just trying to cheat on their tax” and that “[i]t’s a crime.” To enforce the ban, the government approved the creation of a $300 million Black Economy Standing Taskforce who is tasked with generating $3 billion of new tax revenue over the course of four years.
Interestingly, Australia is a one of the most cash-loving countries. Around 37% of Australians use cash, which is 5% more than citizens in the United States and 22% more than citizens in Sweden. In addition, Aussies have already backlashed against proposals to phase out their $100 note even though it is already notoriously rare in common circulation. The cash ban plan seems to ignore the fact that India tried a similar measure for similar reasons a few years ago, since which the policy has largely been considered a failure that has done little to prevent criminal activity and only hurt the most poor citizens.
Obtuse Government Protection
Dash Force News talked about Australia’s cash ban plan with Naomi Brockwell, the famous cryptocurrency commentator who happens to hail from Australia. When she first heard of the ban, she was initially taken aback, but not completely surprised.
“The cash ban seems shockingly Orwellian, but not entirely unexpected. The government purports to be protecting us from malicious actors, but the result will be just more government overreach where our actions are further tracked and controlled. The government is forcing us to use the existing financial system whether we want to or not: a system that has failed over and over to protect our privacy.”
The failure of the banking system can be partially attributed to the undesirable services and products that banks offer. In addition, she mentioned how the ban is going to have unintended consequences the government did not and cannot foresee.
“Banks are often notorious for high account and credit card fees, hidden charges, bad protection of personal information. Forcing these things on businesses with already small profit margins will undoubtably hurt many.”
The data showed that Australians are very fond of cash and Naomi had a hypothesis as to why that is the case.
“Australians like their freedom, and like controlling their own money, and perhaps this stems from an instinctual rejection of authority. There is a distrust for banks throughout the country, and for the government to force citizens to use something they don’t like or agree with is a slap in the face for ordinary Australians who would otherwise choose not to.”
Many economists have studied cashless proposals and countries around the world are trying to implement those policies. Even though they have not had much success thus far, it does not appear as though governments will stop trying to eliminate cash. Naomi sees cryptocurrencies playing a role in the future to combat bad government policies.
“We have seen cryptocurrency become a lifeline for those in places like China and Venezuela where people are being hurt by government actions. As governments gets more controlling and curtail the individual’s choices, people will naturally try to find ways to protect themselves. Cryptocurrency seems to be a natural next step.”
Dash is contributing to that next step
People around the world are looking for solutions to their problems that stem from government and the current monetary and fiscal system. Dash is qualified to provide those solutions with its fast confirmation times, low fees, and security. There are many individuals trying to escape their government’s rapid inflation of the money supply and constant devaluation of their wealth. There are numerous more unbanked individuals around the world that need a secure and inexpensive way to store their wealth, but still have easy access to their liquidity. Some simply want to offer consumers more choices and flexibility or provide new and innovative ways to benefits individuals.
Dash is able to leverage its unique governance and treasury system along with its incentivestructure and community to provide those solutions effectively in a cooperative and decentralized way. Dash has around 100 Dash-accepting merchants on DiscoverDash.com, signaling that some Aussies already have a preference for Dash over their traditional system. Dash provides an effective substitute for consumers that are dissatisfied with their government’s policies, monopoly on money, and the poor services of banks.