March 30, 2015
By: Kelly Diamond, Publisher
It would appear we are commemorating Woodrow Wilson’s tattle policies by reinstituting them… with a British twist.
What happens when Wilson-era policies (A) and British banking policies (B) give each other a “special hug”? Well, that’s an experiment I hoped would never come to pass given the unethical implications of such a practice… yet sadly, it has come to pass.
- Wilson created an entire department called the American Protective League for the sole purpose of intimidating and bullying dissenters. Wilson encouraged private citizens to report on their neighbors whenever they heard people say things of questionable patriotism and allegiance. Obama even tried a strain of this policy himself when he rolled out “flag account”: [email protected]
- England already flags individuals who seek to withdraw over a certain amount at a time. I wrote about the man in the U.K. who wanted to withdraw about 7,000 pounds to repay a loan he’d taken from his mother. Without a note from his mom, as proof of the loan, they would not allow him to make the withdrawal. In essence, the bank has become the parent lording over your money. You need permission to use it!
I have written extensively already about the various manifestations of financial paranoia governments around the world have demonstrated. From Cypriot banks stealing from private holders to bail out their banks while limiting or prohibiting withdrawals, to flagging business owners for “deliberately under-depositing” and seizing their assets.
When I wrote about Terry Dehko and Carole Hinders, they were both flagged because they were making deposits below $10,000 at a time. Terry runs a grocery store that does most of its transaction in cash, plus only has an insurance policy that covers up to $10,000. Carole had run her restaurant without a single legal blemish on her record for decades and was told by her bank that it would spare everyone a lot of paperwork if she made deposits under $10,000… so she did. This is hardly what comes to mind when we think about white collar criminal master minds.
It is the law that banks submit an SAR or “Suspicious Activity Report” for transactions at or above $5,000. The problem is that once the money is suspected of a “crime”… not the owner of the money, but the money itself… it is seized by the state under civil asset forfeiture statutes. I’ve written exhaustively of this as well, and the bottom line is that inanimate objects can be charged with being party to a crime, and they are guilty until proven innocent.
Worse still, there are quotas for how many SAR’s are submitted. If the banks fall below this quota they risk being fined. So banks are already built in government spies on your financial effects.
Now, the Department of Justice (a tragic misnomer if ever there was one) is urging banks to do MORE than just fill out their SAR paperwork. They want them to report “suspicious” bank activity to the local police!
Given the rate of inflation, a $5,000 transaction isn’t very much at all. Moreover, like most federal “suspicion” regulations, the actual terms and criteria are at best vague. There are plenty of legal items for sale on Craigslist right now that cost over $5,000. Ironically, the sellers won’t accept anything other than cash because they are afraid of being scammed by fake money orders and checks. So when someone says they are offering their car or motorcycle for $5,000, how exactly are they meant to get paid?
I look back on the afore-mentioned stories about Terry and Carole and wonder how any small business is supposed to continue to do business under such scrutiny. I think about Cottage Laws and budding businesses and wonder if every single person who turns a dollar is going to be drawing attention to themselves as a potential terrorist.
While hardworking innocent Americans are getting dinged over $5,000 transactions, the same entity that is leveling such allegations against its own citizens is pissing away taxpayer dollars on all sorts of criminal activity, including but not limited to robbing you blind through quantitative easing, illegal wars, spying, and creating a war slush fund. The targeting of private citizens and the criminal activity perpetrated by our government are both justified by the same reason: national security!
This is just another variety of the sobriety or border patrol check points. You know, when you’re just going about your business, and suddenly you find yourself suspected of a crime for simply being there going about your business! The idea of probable cause is a myth. When probable cause has been reduced to something as nebulous as “you were within 100 miles of the US border” or “you were driving down this piece of road at a particular time of night” or “you were depositing/withdrawing sums of money amounting to more than $5,000” then the net has been cast so far and wide we all become suspects. Suspects of what? Terrorism, money laundering, drug/arms/human trafficking, tax evasion… pick one! (This is the darker side of those old ‘choose-your-own-adventure’ books.)
I’ve already dismissed “terrorism” as the real impetus behind these new edicts. It’s hard, however, to say whether these measures are being implemented because the U.S. is hard up for cash, or if they fear a run on the banks. But the more fearful the state’s behavior, the more fearful the people become. It could very well become a self-fulfilling prophesy on the part of the state.
So what happens when you throw Wilsonian snitching policy into the same boiling vat as British banking policy? You get tattling banks who have clearly forsaken their customers’ expectation of privacy. You get the police state introduced into your everyday banking transactions. You get a HUGE burden imposed on an already encumbered economy. You get what is understood as fascism in its purest form.
As your transactions undergo greater scrutiny, and as everyday banking becomes a greater liability, perhaps it is time to consider an offshore account. If that is something of interest to you, click here to schedule your consultation.