In July, Visa officially entered the global 'war on cash', adding to a long list of academics, elites, and bankers urging the removal of one of the last freedoms 'for the good of the rest of us'. However, if Alderman Edward Burke has his way, that 'war on cash' will end in Chicago after he submitted an ordinance at last week's City Council meeting to ban businesses from banning cash.
According to the ordinance, "credit card giant Visa announced it is 'launching a major effort to encourage businesses to go cashless," through a campaign called the Visa Cashless Challenge offering $500,000 for 50 businesses to go cash-free.
As DNAInfo.com reports, the ordinance cites Argo Tea, SweetGreen, Epic Burger and Goddess and the Baker as Chicago businesses that have already gone cashless, but the stores themselves don't seem to have had any issues...
Xuan Tea, a shop at 1816 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Bucktown, opened in September and is credit card-only.
"It's been working out fine. Some are taken aback initially, but we haven't had any problems with it," manager Will Quanstrom said.
"Mostly everyone has a credit card in their pocket, even if they're just out for a jog. It's easier and it's simpler for us. We don't have to go to the bank, or count drawers out." The tea shop has a sign at the front counter that says it only takes credit cards.
Nevertheless, as DNAInfo.com notes, the ordinance, however, points out that credit card companies typically tack on a 1 percent to 3 percent fee on transactions, "a business cost typically passed on to consumers via increased pricing."
Burke called his ordinance a "fair and equal access" issue and calls out Visa's repression of the poor and young...
"A 'no cash' sign is a 'not welcome' sign for many without ready access to credit, including those who are low- or fixed-income, homeless, undocumented, young or victims of identity theft," he said.
It adds that those under 18 can't apply for credit cards, making a cash ban "de facto age discrimination," while many low-income families can't even afford to open a bank account.
The ordinance would make it illegal to decline cash as payment at any business in retail sales or food and drink, under the penalty of fines starting at $1,000 and up to $2,500 a day.
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As we noted previously, this ongoing push for a cashless society in Europe, Asia, and the Americas is about much more than just phasing out paper money - it’s about central planners solidifying control over the public’s wealth. This ongoing merger of corporate and government interests is the definition of crony capitalism. Regardless of the blatant collusion, the choices individuals make will still ultimately decide the direction for the future. Buying material goods on credit has become a lifestyle for millions, but the long-term costs of those decisions must be understood if there’s any chance for progress.
Americans have made a huge mistake by running up a staggering $1 trillion dollars in credit card debt with an average interest rate of over 16%. Thanks to the Federal Reserve system, companies like Mastercard, Discover, and American Express can issue bonds paying extremely low-interest rates to the investors while simultaneously lending that money out to credit card holders at sky high rates. Companies will always take advantage of opportunities to increase profits, but the people’s willingness to keep borrowing from them is at the core of the problem.
Access to cheap capital has been extended to the largest corporations for over a decade, but when it comes to small businesses or individuals there is a completely different set of standards. The pressure to consistently increase revenues and stock prices has led to an unnatural parasitic relationship between these companies and their customers. Cash is one of the last options that allows people a way to avoid dealing with this kind of shakedown.
More than 30% of all payments in the U.S. are still conducted in cash, but financial intermediaries that charge processing fees are joining with the State and central banks to ensure the public has no room to innovate.