- Internet & the Web
Bitcoin v. "SHARIAH-COMPLIANT" GoldMoney Company
GoldMoney or Gold?
Have you ever tortured your brain about the long term feasibility of cryptocurrency and gold?
No? Good for you.
But maybe it's time you did or at least reconsidered using a certain Canadian based gold money system or if you are Muslim, switch to it immediately.
Let me pry your skull cap for a moment.
I mean, on one hand you have gold, a valuable commodity and all that, but with one major drawback. Not theft by thieves, but confiscation by governments – the biggest thieves of all.
Bitgold (now GoldMoney) has a lot going for it. It’s gold. You own bits of gold, in their vaults around the world – controlled by various governments – and you can transact in gold.
Great. Fantastic. But...
Roosevelt Steals all the Gold...
What if the United States Government or any government for that matter, wants to confiscate all of the gold – again? Is our gold really safe? Not ultimately. One dirty nuke and the vault becomes useless, but so would any cryptocurrency die – unless your computers were EMP hardened. And would it matter, if there is no electricity?
Nutshell? Crypto and gold die in nuclear winters. Only food and shelter is important then.
In a recent interview of the main Bitgold a.k.a., GoldMoney developers, there seems to be a ‘disconnect.’
We know that GoldMoney is doing a good job. Ra rah!
We know, that historically, gold will maintain its value against any fiat currency. No Brainer.
We know that Bitcoin and many other crypto’s are commodities of an imperfect nature – not as permanent as gold – but…
Bitgold v. Bitcoin
Will Bitgold or similar, surpass Bitcoins (Cryptocurrencies)?
We also know that Bitcoin is not money. It is, at best, a commodity-like currency with a transitory value.
Gold is more perfect – and it is "physical." It exists. It is not like digitized music or Bitcoin – with a fan based, demand side, price mark up.
But unlike music or perhaps because of it, Bitcoin can be upgraded. Gold cannot. Gold is what you get – forever? (There is a good Twilight Zone movie about that one.)
But the "is not" part -- is that the key?
Yes, we know digital financial instruments created on the ‘blockchain,’ should the various governments impose coercive monetary monopolies, are risky. But what have we now?
Ditching all paper fiats -- is that an option?
We have our Bitcoins now. And by that I mean all of cryptocurreny. Even if it is outlawed.
Are not centralized vaults of gold – still controlling us?
GoldMoney is centralized.
Bitcoin and the like is/are the escape hatch. So few realize this now. Do you see it?
To state that digitized information is centralized when I can zip my currency digits, denominated in Litecoin, in seconds, and to Monero, in the next microsecond – is not very accurate. I can exchange them! I can, only with great difficulty, exchange euros or dollars.
Crypto can succumb to powerful cryptocurrency mining companies and just as quickly, flee to greener crypto pastures – in seconds. But so can I.
You, however, are stuck with gold and silver, until you can unload them – and pay the tax. That is, if the government does not confiscate them first. If crime, does not pay.
Cryptocurrency is an escape from the all-powerful intrinsic value. It is risky.
We know that physical stuff, in a fair world, is best. But let me advise you – the world isn’t fair and your Bitgold (okay GoldMoney) is at risk of confiscation by governments – and the taxman – and any bored hacker. Just ask the FBI and Target and Hillary Clinton.
On the other side of the world, today, the Chinese understand Bitcoin. Maybe the Chinese gamble – okay – heard that one.
But why use cryptocurrency? Why not gold coins? Will the Chinese Government allow it? Maybe. It appears as if they may even adopt a national cryptocurrency. A golden solution -- trusted by? Not a freaking soul.
Will the Chinese back their paper or cryptocurrency money with gold as well? Would the average Chinese citizen then feel all warm and fuzzy inside? Doubtful.
But what do people really think about cryptocurrency? Are the millions of Bitcoin and cryptocurrency users delusional? No. They use them for good reasons – selfish, personal reasons. They are not regulated by idiots.
They want to earn and keep their money. And that is a good thing. But, underneath that good reason, there is the other mechanism at play here – and that is: “full control.” As author Nathaniel Popper put it, “Digital Gold" -- but isn't that an oxymoron?
Is money evolving?
No government – as of yet – can confiscate your Bitcoin.
As long as you secure your ‘coins,’ governments are out of the loop. That is what I have referred to in the past, as a ‘bridge currency.’ Meaning until there comes a time, where we can remove governments from our pockets, there will always be things like Bitcoin.
And I do not foresee an Age of Reason in our near future. Until then, cryptocurrencies will reign supreme. Once humans have secured their freedoms, gold might make a comeback as a money. Until then, hide your gold. And silver. And women.
Which leads me to another issue. As is mentioned in the video below, ideas are powerful things – more so that reality. Witness Adolf Hitler, Pol Pot, and Genghis Khan – all humans with wrong ideas. All humans, who changed the face of our world – with words – with ideas -- with blood.
Bitcoin (cryptocurrency) is an idea. It seeks to give you “full control.” Now, Monero or AEON might end up owning the field, but Bitcoin (Satoshi Nakamoto) led the way. In any case, both offer ways you can spend, save and transact. All without a bank.
But "full control" is actually an illusion. You don't own the code.
Negative Interest is Confiscation
In the near future the U.S. might follow Japan, a country of loyal zombies (no apologies) into the world of negative interest rates. The Lord Maynard Keynes “Hyper-drive” to monetary destruction will then commence.
Why on earth would any sane human (non-Zombie) keep their money in a bank which bills you to do so? Unless there is no choice?
(Update: Germans are hoarding cash in safes at home to avoid negative interest rates. September 9, 2016. I hope it's gold, because if history repeats itself, it would be better to hoard toilet paper.)
Recently, Peter Schiff of Schiffgold has challenged the tax issues surrounding Bitgold. Bitgold has responded, essentially denying Schiff's claims, that taxes would be owed if one 'cashed-out' in gold. In other words, took their money out 'in gold' and not currency -- from Bitgold (GoldMoney).
Personally, I've always had tax concerns related to Bitgold as far as 'paying' for things with a 'Bitgold' (GoldMoney) backed account. Since once I do that -- as an American 'subject,' I must either pay taxes on any realized gain for the sale of gold or reduce taxes for losses. Too much a pain in the arse. Hence, just cashing out -- taking gold -- seemed not to be a taxable issue. That is, if and until I sell gold or trade it for something after I have it in my possession.
Maybe this is why Bitgold (GoldMoney) has challenged Schiff to a debate?
Also -- recently Bitgold (Goldmoney) has announced a 'gold for gold' transfer method, when making purchases? This seems like the tax questions -- gains and losses -- would be mitigated. But -- maybe not so fast.
Suppose I send you (an American) a gram of 'Bitgold' (GoldMoney) to buy a pair of pants. In this example, we are both customers and I am an American too. I pay you in Bitgold (GoldMoney) -- electronically. You receive payment -- electronically. And you send me the pants in the mail.
Consequences: I think you will need to report your income, at the current 'dollar' value of gold and I will need to report if that gram of gold you used was worth less or more (or equal to) the dollar value when I originally purchased it. (This is just the basic example. I'm not a tax planner.) If that gram of gold was worth more, I had a gain -- a taxable gain. So not only will I pay for the pants, but I will need to pay an additional income tax, on top of any sales taxes, for my gains.
A Bitgold (GoldMoney) vs. Peter Schiff debate, would be interesting -- to me.
See these articles for more details:
- http://schiffgold.com/commentaries/beware-bitgold-ticking-tax-timebomb/ (no longer available)
(Note: the above occurred before Bigold, now GoldMoney, partnered with Peter Schiff. Or did they buy him out?)
Something is Missing here...
Update: July 9, 2016...
There is a new video out and BitGold, now changing to GoldMoney, in keeping with its philosophy, I suppose -- has apparently gained Peter Schiff's trust. This is all well and fine and I've posted the video below, but some answers are a bit foggy.
I've checked the BitGold, soon to be GoldMoney website with new bells and whistles to come, but here's the thing. I mean I trust gold and silver, more than Bitcoin, but Bitcoin more than governments.
The fact that fiat currency is terrible is true. If, like Peter implied in the video, that nobody knows you may be using a gold denominated payment processor that is BitGold, may be true. It's a bit misleading, however. At least to me. "They" will know. And you can figure out who "they" are.
If I transact using my PrePaid BitGold or GoldMoney card, I am using gold. Yes, I use that overlay of software, but that overlay says I own or at least have title to "x" amount of gold in a vault controlled by BitGold/GoldMoney.
Since my dollar devalues against gold, usually; each time I buy something with my GoldMoney Card, for example -- I would have a taxable gain. I'm talking about in the United States, of course.
Having a gain means I owe taxes. Probably short-term capital gains taxes.
Now, "they" may not know that my prepaid card is gold denominated at BitGold/GoldMoney, but what if I'm audited by the IRS? What if BitGold/GoldMoney is audited in Canada, at the request of the IRS or the Justice Department or the FED, in the United States?
Not possible? Sure it is. It can happen in Zurich or London too.
BitGold/GoldMoney uses Brinks to store their gold, as I understand it. I prefer to keep my gold in New York, but I also entertain other areas, but not Dubai. Too many restrictions there.
In New York, the Federal Government can at any time, confiscate the gold I own. If they take my gold in the United States, they would also (probably) restrict my use of these services (BitGold/GoldMoney) via other vaults in other countries, where I am not a citizen.
Again, I'm all for gold/silver as money and still support the idea that cryptocurrency technology will lead us to a better place -- act like a bridge to a better more secure money -- but BitGold/GoldMoney may not be it.
In the meantime, a lot of honest, hard working people are still holding to the idea that governments cannot be trusted. Currently, things like Bitcoin are still better that gold in a vault in New York (unless it's in your personal safe next to your handgun).
And of course, gold in a BitGold/GoldMoney account is superior, in many ways, to my fiat bills electronically stored at my bank. No doubt.
But controlled by Canadians? Canadian laws? A government which over-taxes its citizens, has crappy healthcare, and limited free speech?
It makes me want to go "hrmph..."
Update: September 9, 2016 -- Ominous Development
I have a new concern regarding Bitgold, now GoldMoney.
Given the Fed's call to the U.S. Congress to reign in the types of "physical" investments banks make, will that then place pressure upon GoldMoney's debit (prepaid) card system?
Or...will GoldMoney be able to utilize foreign banks to settle debits?
If so, will U.S. Citizens then be disallowed debit card use from GoldMoney?
Last, but not least
GoldMoney is now "SHARIAH-COMPLIANT."
Great, gold gets religion. Are they now going to list it as Buddhist, Christian, Atheist etc., safe as well? Or do you think that "Arab Spring" enticed GoldMoney to open their arms to prayer? maybe Dubai has a lot of gold and GoldMoney wants to keep on the Middle Eastern "good side?"
Advertising for Islam is not only questionable, but potentially, a business killer in the United States.
After all Sharia Law treats Muslims better that Christians and other religions -- or those of us who lack a religious bent. In a sense, GoldMoney is saying, by default, that if you are non-Mulsim, you are wrong? Scholars still debate the Sharia Law concept that Government should not be separated from religion -- Islam -- and this fact rankles many a U.S. Citizen.
Use GoldMoney at your own risk.
Bitcoin and Bitgold Artwork Sources:
Bitcoin: By Web-dev-chris (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Bitgold: By Bluejays95 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons