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The world is heading towards CBDCs: the inevitable future of finance or new form of dystopian control? ‘No Buying or Selling Without the Infrared Vaccination Mark of the Beast.’

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The world is heading towards CBDCs: the inevitable future of finance or new form of dystopian control? ‘No Buying or Selling Without the Infrared Vaccination Mark of the Beast.’

January 25, 2023 at 4:24 pm Middle East Monitor

It is the unfortunate – or fortunate, depending on one’s propensity to autocracy – nature of every decentralised system in this modern age to become centralised under the scope of governmental regulation or private sector control. That has been true for taxation, data, health and safety legislation, construction permission and a host of other matters deemed regulatory for a safe and ordered society.

Some of that is a blessing as it ensures the minimalisation of death and the guarding of life, yet some is just plain unnecessary bureaucracy that seems to serve the age-old attributes of those who enforce them: greed for revenue and lust for authority.

An emerging example of that may be the current and looming alterations to national and the global financial systems.

Back in 2021, I wrote on the possibility of crypto currencies being a saviour of the economic woes that many in developing and Middle Eastern nations have been facing amid record inflation and currency devaluation, such as Lebanon and Turkiye.

That view had truth in it, but it may have been overly optimistic of the widespread effect crypto currencies could have. It was also somewhat ignorant or overlooking of a major piece of the economic puzzle which is increasingly rearing its head – Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs).

As digital assets of a nation’s Central Bank, CBDCs are set to have significant legitimacy when it comes to their rollouts over the coming years. They will first reportedly be voluntary and subject to pilot schemes and limited trials before going national.

Businesses and citizens will then be encouraged and heavily incentivised to use them, initially as an alternative form of payment and then as the primary or sole form of payment. Finally, as critics warn and proponents rejoice, societies will become cashless and all will be digital.

The development and use of CBDCs are lauded by their proponents as the future of finance, as if they are the only possible method of payment and transaction to be used in our digitalised world. Anything less or any continued use of physical cash will, it seems, be backward.

It is not only the loss of coins and notes one can tangibly feel and touch which so concerns CBDCs’ critics, nor is it any sentimentality towards the past or tradition, necessarily. Rather, it is the threat to individual privacy, along with the potential for expanded government and Central Bank control, which are the primary concerns.

A national CBDC – a digital pound, euro, dollar, etc – would operate through the same blockchain system which crypto currencies are famed for being run on. The main difference between how the two systems utilise the blockchain is that, with crypto, the records are able to be – and often are, depending on the crypto currency – anonymous and difficult to trace back to senders and receivers and the exact transaction details. That is a reason so many governments and financial authorities have accused the network of hiding the activities of criminals, terrorists and rogue states.

With a national CBDC, however, every single purchase and transaction could be trackable and seen by banks or governing authorities, along with their source and destination details. That is not all: they could also be “programmable“, meaning the providers and regulators will be able to program the digital currencies to accept or refuse payments for certain items or services. Critics even warn that this could be tied to a ‘social credit score’, in which an individual’s ability to purchase something will be dependent on their behaviour, political views, history of political protests and much more.

Under such a system, the idea is that a citizen with a poor score will be unable to book flights abroad or pay for things beyond the bare essentials. That is not difficult to imagine, as the system is already in place and functional throughout parts of China, where the digital yuan is currently being rolled out.

That scenario is, no doubt, a terrifying one, and would be a significant hit to liberty and freedom of choice on multiple levels. CBDC proponents and advocates, though, insist that the issue is not so black and white.

Dr Jonas Gross, the Chairman of the Digital Euro Association, told Middle East Monitor that the privacy and surveillance concerns over transaction data being collected centrally by a Central Bank “is only one side of the medal”. A digital currency, he said, could “also increase privacy … if a proper CBDC design is chosen. Thus, the degree of data privacy depends on the CBDC design – and the preferences and policy goals of the Central Banks.”

Gross emphasised that currently, “there are technologies that actually allow [us] to issue a CBDC that provides high privacy guarantees while complying with regulation. Examples include zero-knowledge proofs, blind signatures or secure hardware solutions.”

With such solutions, there will be “no way for third parties, such as banks or Central Banks, to observe the transaction data or track users. No confidential transaction data is shared – only proofs of the correctness. Thus, privacy is ensured by cryptography and mathematics.” He clarified that “As a consequence, such privacy solutions allow trustless privacy, i.e., privacy that does not require trust in another party to preserve privacy.”

Privacy and respect for individual freedom of choice, then, can be guaranteed by building them into the infrastructure of CBDCs. Yet, that would still be entirely reliant on the government or Central Bank – not all are independent from government coercion – actually abiding by such a policy.

Countries throughout the world are already jumping on the bandwagon of opportunities that CBDCs offer, with 114 altogether exploring their use. Out of those, 39 are conducting research, 33 are in the development stage, and 17 are piloting their digital currencies at the time of this writing.

Those countries are not only democratic ones. More authoritarian states such as China, Russia, Middle Eastern and Gulf States, and countless others are digging into the concept, and they can hardly be expected to implement privacy policies into their digital monetary systems.

Even supposedly democratic Western nations can be suspected of using those newfound capabilities to their advantage. One has only to look at US intelligence agencies’ blatant breaches of rights and legislation in accessing the financial and transactional activities of hundreds of millions of people over the years, in a massive collaboration between the intelligence community and big tech.

Another more frightening example was seen in the Canadian government’s freezing of bank accounts linked to citizens who protested against vaccine mandates a year ago. Such harsh and debilitating measures are sufficient not only to crack down on political dissent, but also to paralyse one’s very life and financial capabilities in the process.

Those actions taken by government and intelligence agencies, in line with banking services, were able to be conducted under the current monetary system which is still only partly digitised. Imagine the capacity of control and financial limitations that could be imposed in a wholly digitised system. Now, one could still somewhat manage to live their lives by spending physical cash, with authorities only able to track them through a long process of sourcing the receipts and monitoring camera footage.

Under a CBDC system – particularly one that does not respect the rules of privacy afforded to users – that individual’s activities and movements could be monitored in a state of constant surveillance, their funds can be seized, and their ability to spend limited to where, what, when and how much.

Throughout this decade, we can wholly expect states and banks to continue with the adoption and development of digital currencies. How they develop them, what policies they establish for their use, and at what level they are implemented will vary. There will, no doubt, be a myriad of benefits offered by CBDCs, especially through the blockchain network.

While the crypto community has long advocated the value of decentralisation, these centralised national digital currencies will be far from that. Their rollout may apparently be inevitable, but perhaps not at the cost of eliminating cash altogether. Even more importantly, respect for privacy and freedom from control should be at the heart of their creation, or else they will only be the seeds of a more surveiled, repressive and dystopian future.

But how can they call on him (Jesus Christ) to save them unless they believe in him (Jesus Christ)? And how can they believe in him (Jesus Christ) if they have never heard about him (Jesus Christ)? And how can they hear about him (Jesus Christ) unless someone tells them?” —Romans 10:14

In His Service,

Night Watchman

Paul Rolland

Night Watchman Ministries

Make Your Decision for Christ NOW!!!!!!! Time is Up!!!!!!!

Jesus Christ’s Offer of Salvation:

The ABCs of Salvation through Jesus Christ (the Lamb)

A. Admit/Acknowledge/Accept that you are sinner. Ask God’s forgiveness and repent of your sins.

. . . “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23).

. . . “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one.” (Romans 3:10).

. . . “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” (1 John 1:8).

B. Believe Jesus is Lord. Believe that Jesus Christ is who He claimed to be; that He was both fully God and fully man and that we are saved through His death, burial, and resurrection. Put your trust in Him as your only hope of salvation. Become a son or daughter of God by receiving Christ.

. . . “That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. (John 3:15-17). For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Romans 10:13).

C. Call upon His name, Confess with your heart and with your lips that Jesus is your Lord and Savior.

. . . “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Romans 10:9-10).

. . . “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” (John 1:8-10).

. . . “And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. (John 2:2).

. . . “In this was manifested the love of god toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.” (1 John 4:9, 14-15).

. . . “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.” (Romans 5:8-10).

. . . “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 6:23).

. . . “Jesus saith unto them, I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6).

. . . “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth.” (Romans 1:16).

. . . “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts: 4:12).

. . . “Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth for there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” (1 Timothy 2:4-6).

. . . “For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Thessalonians 5:9).

. . . “But as many as received him, to them gave the power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” (John 1:12).

True Church / Bride of Christ Spared from God’s Wrath:

 Romans 5:8-10. “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.”

Romans 12:19. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.

1 Thessalonians 1:10. And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.

1 Thessalonians 5:9. For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,

Romans 8:35. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

Jeremiah 30:7. Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble, but he shall be saved out of it.

Revelation 3:10 Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.

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