The India Times reports that the government is calling on banks to assist an attack on thousands of years of cultural tradition by assualting the beloved practice of open defecation in rural India (archived). This call comes despite the fact that many toilets stand unused or abandoned as they are rejected by defenders of this cultural heritage (archived). A report released in 2014 by the World Health Organization and UNICEF states that India has a 50% open defecation rate.
With many governments and businesses in Europe moving to abandon physical cash in favor of trackable electronic payments, Austrian Deputy Economy Minister Harald Mahrer has called for consitutional protection of the right to transact in cash for privacy reasons (archived). The European Union is currently debating restrictions on banknotes and coins in the name fighting of "terrorism" though central banks noise about negative interest rates suggests that European finance ministers advocating against physical cash may have ulterior motives.
The Royal Bank of Scotland is reportedly advising client to sell everything because shit is going down (archived). This supports predictions made by Qntra that 2016 more than 2015 is going to be, and has so far been a very bad year for fiat interests. We are only 12 days into 2016. Sorry for your loss.
Yesterday the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) announced it has decided to extend its deadline for the fiat payment card industry to abandon SSL version 3 and TLS version 1.0 all the way into June of 2018 (archived). Back in April they had tried to set a June 2016 deadline parties handling fiat payment cards to move up to at least TLS version 1.1 or higher in light of POODLE, SHA1 weakness, and other protocol level attacks. General Manager Stephen Orfei of the PCI SSC blames "business issues" for the extension. These extra two years create the potential for massive fraud involving intercepted payment card information, but massive fraud is an inherent part of the fiat system.
The United States Congress has passed and President Hussein Bahamas has signed a reauthorization for the United States Export-Import bank. The United States Export-Import bank as previously mentioned on Qntra acts as an open ended subsidy for Boeing and select other businesses servicing the interests of the socialist United States Government. The reauthorization happened the same day the director of the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation acknowledged an otherwise routine mass shooting even two days earlier had allegedly been carried out by a wedded couple with ties to ISIS.
Reports have emerged today that the United States regional governments of Illinois (archived) and Pennsylvania (archived) have had their credit ratings lowered joining the embattled municipality of Ferguson as the creditworthiness of the United States and its parts continue sliding due to the structural insolvency of the fiat currency experiment. Illinois was downgraded by Fitch Ratings while Pennsylvania was downgraded by Moody's. Illinois already lead the United States with the lowest credit rating of any State government, and is embroiled in a budgetary dispute between new Governor Bruce Rauner and the legislature run by the opposing political party. The financial situation in Illinois has degraded to the point the self funding state lottery can no longer pay out winning tickets about $600 with ongoing labor unrest including a teacher's strike in East Saint Louis threatening to destabilize some of Illinois most volatile areas. Pennsylvania by contrast was downgraded due to ongoing structural deficits and underfunded pension obligations.
A six day old Bet on whether Ethereum rides into 2016 as a continuing economically viable thing has managed to so far draw more than 129 Bitcoin in wagers. The criteria assigned for Ethereum to fail include the value of Ethereum tokens falling under 0.001 BTC per Ethereum token during December 2015 or if the volume of Ethereum tokens traded during the month of December 2015 being less than 100 Bitcoin in value. At the present 23 Bitcoin have been staked on Ethereum's failure while 106.11 Bitcoin are staked on Ethereum surviving December. According the the wager on BitBet price information is to be taken from Poloniex. As of this writing Ethereum is trading for around 0.004 Bitcoin per token with an all time low price of 0.00243990 Bitcoin per token on August 10th shortly after Ethereum's release. Continue reading
MWTW in Portland, Maine alleges a third party payment processor used by Donald Trump's presidential campaign is repeating donation charges and in at least one case was reported to have charged a man who entered payment information but decided not to purchase anything from the campaign's online store (archived). In all 13 charges were attempted of which 6 ended up successfully debiting a balance from the man's bank account. The station is referring to the charges as unauthorized while the payment processor blames a 'glitch' in their system. Continue reading
Ferguson, Missouri the site of numerous clashes over the past year between rebels and Government forces has had their creditworthiness as evaluated by Moody's reduced seven levels from Aa3 to Ba1 "junk" status (archived). Moody's cites a rapid deterioration in Ferguson's financial health following the beginning of the rebellion, and if Ferguson's government continues to conceal information about how their efforts to stabilize the situation have adversely affect their finances Moody's has threatened to withdraw their rating of Ferguson completely. Ferguson government leader James Knowles considers Moody's action "unfair" and that the embattled government is financially healthy enough to not require further debt issuances at this time. Moody's is predicting Ferguson's government could be insolvent by 2017.
After gifting politicians with an embargo against following their retractions, Twitter yesterday announced a further gift for politicians which begins with those running for office in the United States. In a blog post today (archived) that could not be contained within their otherwise customary 140 character limit, Twitter announced they would be unveiling "cash tags" facilitating donations to politicians named in a $cashtag through an arrangement with Jack Dorsey's social payments startup Square. Continue reading