Error: Embedded data could not be displayed.




Venezuela's New Cryptocurrency: Just Another Form of Control Fraud

February 23, 2018

If a currency can't be converted on demand into the underlying commodity, it's not "backed by oil," it's just another form of control fraud.

The broke and broken country of Venezuela appears to be the first nation-state to issue a cryptocurrency token (the petro) as a means of escaping the financial black hole that's consuming its economy: Maduro Launches Oil-Backed Crypto "For The Welfare Of Venezuela".

For context, here is a chart of the black market (i.e. real-world) value of the Venezuela's fiat currency, the bolivar: a 100,000 bolivar note is worth somewhere around 40 cents USD (US dollar), i.e. near zero. (Venezuela maintains a fantasy-official USD/bolivar exchange rate that has no relation to the actual purchasing-power value of Venezuela's fiat currency.)

The gee-whiz component of the petro is that it is supposedly "backed by oil." In other words, unlike other cryptocurrencies/ tokens, the petro has intrinsic value because it's backed by oil.

But what does backed by oil actually mean?

The only way any currency, fiat or crypto, is "backed" by any real-world commodity is if the currency is convertible into the commodity on demand, that is, the currency can be exchanged for the commodity at a transparent published conversion rate.

If Venezuela's petro cannot be converted directly into deliverable-upon-demand oil contracts, it's not backed by anything. It's important to understand that any currency that claims to be "backed" by gold, oil, rice, bat guano, etc. must be convertible to the underlying commodity at a transparent conversion rate.

If a currency can't be converted on demand into the underlying commodity, it's not "backed by oil," it's just another form of control fraud, which I define as those holding power in centralized institutions enrich themselves at the expense of the citizenry by modifying what's legally permissible.

Conventional fraud is against the law; control fraud is legal because it benefits those who make the rules. If there is no transparent mechanism for converting petros into oil that can be sold and delivered in the global marketplace, then the petro is nothing but a central-state control fraud: those foolish enough to believe the con that the petro is "backed by oil" will end up with a worthless token.

A bit of history will clarify "backed by something real" conversion. In the 1960s, the US dollar was famously "backed by gold," which meant that other nations (via their central banks) could convert $35 USD into an ounce of gold upon demand.

As U.S. trade and federal budget deficits soared in the late 1960s, nations such as France began converting their excess dollars into physical gold. If this conversion had been allowed to continue, foreign entities would have drained all of America's gold as they converted their dollars (exported via trade deficits to other nations) into gold. As a result, the U.S. had no choice but to end the conversion of dollars to gold.

The notion that China or Russia will issue a gold-backed currency attracts considerable attention, but a currency is only "backed by gold" if a foreign financial institution can convert their yuan or rubles into gold upon demand. If there is no transparent, easy mechanism for foreign holders of the currency to convert their currency into gold upon demand, then the currency isn't actually backed by anything: it's simply a form of control fraud.

It doesn't matter if the currency is digital, paper or crypto: if it can't be directly converted into the underlying commodity at a transparent published conversion rate, it's not backed by anything.

Until a foreign financial institution successfully converts its Venezuelan petros into actual barrels of oil, or oil contracts that can be sold immediately on the global market, then the petro isn't backed by anything. Until that conversion process is functioning transparently, the petro is nothing but a giant control fraud perpetrated to benefit the few clinging to power in Venezuela at the expense of the many.


My new book Money and Work Unchained is $9.95 for the Kindle ebook and $20 for the print edition.

Read the first section for free in PDF format.


If you found value in this content, please join me in seeking solutions by becoming a $1/month patron of my work via patreon.com.



(Kindle ebook $9.95, print $20 )

This is the most important book I have written. It started when I asked myself a question: when we dream of the future of our society, are we hoping for the right things?

The current conventional-wisdom view of our soon-to-be future is rose-tinted: automation will free millions of people from the drudgery of work, then by taxing the robots doing all the work, we can pay everyone Universal Basic Income (UBI), enabling a life of leisure and artistic pursuit for all. The result: A future of Universal Happiness.

But is this accurate? Is this what UBI is actually capable of doing? More importantly, is this what we want?

And even more importantly: will this “future” be our best future? Will it account for and manage the practicalities of work, money and automation, given the limits of endless growth on a finite planet?

Money and Work Unchained drags the now-popular concept of Universal Basic Income (UBI) from the shadows of Pundit blather into a harsh, illuminating light, and in doing so presents an entirely new view of the future that upends our conventional, foundational, understanding of work and money.

This book lays out a practical pathway that realigns work, money and human fulfillment into a sustainable system that sheds the inequalities and injustices of the status quo in favor of a human-scale way of living.

And – it gives us a future to truly hope for.

Kindle ebook $9.95, print $20)



Recent entries:

Venezuela's New Cryptocurrency: Just Another Form of Control Fraud February 23, 2018

The End of (Artificial) Stability February 21, 2018

Russian Meddling: Gagging on the Irony February 19, 2018

Our Approaching Winter of Discontent February 16, 2018

The Ghosts of 1968 February 14, 2018

What Just Changed? February 12, 2018

Three Crazy Things We Now Accept as "Normal" February 9, 2018

Before You "Buy the Dip," Look at This One Chart February 7, 2018

Is the 9-Year Long Dead Cat Bounce Finally Ending? February 6, 2018

Is Congress Finally Pushing Back Against Security Agencies' Over-Reach? February 5, 2018

Political Correctness Serves the Ruling Elite February 2, 2018


January 2018     December 2017     2017 Archives     2016 Archives     2015 Archives           Archives 2005-2017







Contributions/subscriptions are acknowledged in the order received. Your name and email remain confidential and will not be given to any other individual, company or agency. All contributors are listed below in acknowledgement of my gratitude.

Thank you, Cheryl A. ($50), for your superlatively generous contribution to this site -- I am greatly honored by your steadfast support and readership.

 

Thank you, Barry H. ($5/month), for your splendidly generous pledge to this site -- I am greatly honored by your support and readership.


      go to Kindle edition


     


     



Of Two Minds Site Links

home     musings     my books     archives     books/films     policies/disclosures     social media/search     Aphorisms     How to Contribute, Subscribe/Unsubscribe     sites/blogs of interest     original music/songs     Get a Job (book)     contributors       my definition of success       why readers donate/subscribe to Of Two Minds     mobile site (Blogspot)     mobile site (m.oftwominds.com)


HUGE GIANT BIG FAT DISCLAIMER: Nothing on this site should be construed as investment advice or guidance. It is not intended as investment advice or guidance, nor is it offered as such.... (read more)

WHY EMAIL TO THIS SITE IS READ BUT MAY NOT BE ACKNOWLEDGED: Regrettably, I am so sorely pressed for time and energy that I am unable to respond to the vast majority of emails. Please know I read all emails, but I can only devote a very limited number of hours to this blog and all correspondence....



Contributions

Contributors and subscribers enable Of Two Minds to post free content. Without your financial support, the free content would disappear for the simple reason that I cannot keep body and soul together on my meager book sales alone.

Become a patron of my work via patreon.com

How to Contribute, Subscribe/Unsubscribe to Of Two Minds

SPECIAL APPEAL TO READERS OF OFTWOMINDS from longtime correspondent Cheryl A.:

I don't recall exactly how I discovered Of Two Minds in late 2005, but it is hard to express how grateful I am that I did. As a result of the insight I have gained from the information Charles has shared over these past 9 years, I have been able to navigate this turbulent period much more successfully than most of my acquaintances. I'm sure that those of you who visit OTM with any regularity have similarly benefitted in numerous ways.

The addition of the weekly musings has been an extra bonus for supporters that has provided further insight into the markets, as well as the world around us (often providing a much needed smile).

I have no doubt that those who generously contribute to this site recognize the value that it offers. I hope that those of you who visit, but have not yet contributed, will consider doing so. Your support is essential in helping to maintain such an important resource.

Thank you, Cheryl, for this vote of confidence. I can only promise that I will continue to do my best.

"This guy is THE leading visionary on reality. He routinely discusses things which no one else has talked about, yet, turn out to be quite relevant months later."
--Walt Howard, commenting about CHS on another blog.

"You shine a bright and piercing light out into an ever-darkening world."
Jeremy Beck




Or send coins, stamps or quatloos via mail--please request P.O. Box address.


Contributions in any amount are greatly appreciated.



Subscriptions to the Weekly Musings Reports

Subscribers ($5/mo) and those who have contributed $50 or more annually (or made multiple contributions totalling $50 or more) receive weekly exclusive Musings Reports via email ($50/year is about 96 cents a week).

Each weekly Musings Report offers five features:
1. Exclusive essay on a diverse range of topics
2. Summary of the blog this week
3. Best thing that happened to me this week
4. Market Musings--commentary on the economy & global markets
5. From Left Field (a limited selection of interesting links)

At readers' request, there is also a $10/month subscription option. (Everyone at the $10/month rate has the opportunity to add another person to the Musings email list for free.)

What subscribers are saying about the Musings (Musings samples here):

"What makes you a channel worth paying for? It's actually pretty simple - you possess a clarity of thought that most of us can only dream of, and a perspective that allows you to focus on the truth with laser-like precision." Jim S.

The "unsubscribe" link is for when you find the usual drivel here insufferable.

How to Contribute, Subscribe/Unsubscribe to Of Two Minds

 
 

PayPal and Dwolla members can also subscribe to the weekly Musings Reports with a one-time $50 payment: please email me if you use Dwolla, as Dwolla does not provide me with your email.

Become a $5/month patron of my work via patreon.com





Extra-Special Bonus Aphorisms:

"There is no security on this earth; there is only opportunity."
(Douglas MacArthur)

"We are what we repeatedly do." (Aristotle)

"Do the thing and you shall have the power." (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." (E.F. Schumacher, via Tom R.)

"He who will not risk cannot win." (John Paul Jones)

"When we drink coffee, ideas march in like the army." (Honore de Balzac)

"Progress is not possible without deviation." (Frank Zappa, via Richard Metzger)

"Victory favors those who take pains." (amat victoria curam)

"The man who has a garden and a library has everything." (Cicero, via Lee Bentley)

"A healthy homecooked family meal and a home garden are revolutionary acts." (CHS)

"Do you know what amazes me more than anything else? The impotence of force to organize anything." (Napoleon Bonaparte)

"The way of the Tao is reversal" Or "Reversal is the movement of Tao." (Lao Tzu)

"Chance favours the prepared mind." (Louis Pasteur)

"Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm." (Winston Churchill)

"Where there is ruin, there is hope for treasures." (Rumi)

"The realm of gratitude is boundless." (CHS, 11/25/15)

"History doesn't have a reverse gear." (CHS, 12/22/15)

Smith's Law of Conservation of Risk: Every sustained action has more than one consequence. Some consequences will appear positive for a time before revealing their destructive nature. Some consequences will be intended, some will not. Some will be foreseeable, some will not. Some will be controllable, some will not. Those that are unforeseen and uncontrollable will trigger waves of other unforeseen and uncontrollable consequences. (July 8, 2014)(thanks to Lew G. for retitling the idea.)

Smith's Neofeudalism Principle #1: If the citizenry cannot replace a kleptocratic authoritarian government and/or limit the power of the financial Aristocracy at the ballot box, the nation is a democracy in name only.

The Smith Corollary to Metcalfe's Law (The Network Effect): the value of the network is created not just by the number of connected devices/users but by the value of the information and knowledge shared by users in sub-networks and in the entire network. (CHS, 4/6/16)

"We've become a culture of excuses rather than solutions: solutions always require sustained effort and discipline." (CHS 4/9/16)

"Fraud as a way of life caters an extravagant banquet of consequences." (CHS 4/14/16)

"Creativity = problem solving = value creation." (CHS 6/4/16)

"Truth is powerful because it is the core dynamic of solving problems." (CHS 7/21/17)

"We live in a system of human emotions that masquerades as a science (economics)." (CHS 1/1/18)

"Always remember, your focus determines your reality." George Lucas

click here for more Extra-Special Bonus Aphorisms.





Error: Embedded data could not be displayed.
   

Terms of Service:
All content on this blog is provided by Trewe LLC for informational purposes only. The owner of this blog makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site. The owner will not be liable for any errors or omissions in this information nor for the availability of this information. The owner will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the display or use of this information. These terms and conditions of use are subject to change at anytime and without notice.

Our Privacy Policy:
Correspondents' email is strictly confidential. This site does not collect digital data from visitors or distribute cookies. Advertisements served by third-party advertising networks such as Adsense and Investing Channel may use cookies or collect information from visitors for the purpose of Interest-Based Advertising; if you wish to opt out of Interest-Based Advertising, please go to Opt out of interest-based advertising (The Network Advertising Initiative) If you have other privacy concerns relating to advertisements, please contact advertisers directly. Websites and blog links on the site's blog roll are posted at my discretion.

Regarding Cookies:
This site does not collect digital data from visitors or distribute cookies. Advertisements served by third-party advertising networks such as Adsense and Investing Channel may use cookies or collect information from visitors for the purpose of Interest-Based Advertising; if you wish to opt out of Interest-Based Advertising, please go to Opt out of interest-based advertising (The Network Advertising Initiative) If you have other privacy concerns relating to advertisements, please contact advertisers directly.

Our Commission Policy:
Though I earn a small commission on Amazon.com books and gift certificates and gold (BullionVault) purchased via links on my site, I receive no fees or compensation for any other non-advertising links or content posted on my site.



   
   
   
    home     email me (no promise of response, sorry, here's why)     mirror site