David Webb, a former hedge fund manager has written a short book called “The Great Taking”. Basically, a book about how the world’s bankers will seize assets, shares, securities, etc. if there is a major financial crisis.
I at first thought that this was an interesting read with no basis in fact.
I then came across the term “security entitlement" which is not the same thing as security:
In the UK I was surprised to come across a paper written by The Law Commission entitled “Who Owns Your Shares”:
From The Great Taking:
The greatest subjugation in world history will have been made possible by the invention of a construct; a subterfuge; a lie: the “Security Entitlement”.
I’m still not sure and I’d be very happy if someone could tell me that all of the above is a load of made up nonsense and no one would seize my assets in a financial crisis.
It could happen. But anything could happen in theory (unless it violates rules of physics, and even then…). Meanwhile, by allowing government to grow continuously for 120+ years, the same thing happens over time (not banks taking over, but rather government taking over, and most people like you argue that they are essentially one and the same anyway).
Interesting graph in some ways. We know what caused the peaks, but the larger dips are strange: in the past recent decades they occurred from 1976-1980, then again from 1992-2000, and again from 2009-2017.
If there is a major financial crisis, you have more to fear from the government seizing assets than some financial institution - especially since that financial institution might be one of the first things seized.
We have a great recent example with the Great Recession. Stock market dropped 60% and it was the government coming in to take control. It wasn’t the banks.
And besides, if this fear was real, just what would one do about it? Why waste brain cells trying to protect oneself from an event that would end the world economy, regardless? Would any asset have value if there was no longer any way to protect it from being seized from a 3rd party?
Makes as much sense to worry about a world-ending asteroid. Sure it can happen but unlike in the movies, there is likely nothing I can do to protect myself from such.
The real danger will come when we have a CBDC. Those doing it make no secret of what they are doing. The Bank for International Settlements head Agustin Carstens makes no secret of it. He want to know who is spending $100 dollars and talks of absolute control when a CDBC is in place:
I hope you realize that in these end of the world situations that governments can simply outlaw either/both the personal ownership of an asset (we did it before with gold) or make it illegal to be used for tender/barter.
If entities start to seize assets, your precious metals will certainly not be protected - even if it is physical ownership.
OK I’m going to ignore the spikes of 1915-1919 and 1941-45, because we know exactly what those were about (hint: war) I’m likewise going to ignore the spikes of 2009-10 and 2020-21 because we likewise know what those were about (hint: economic conflagration).
If I parse the remainder I see an upward slope from the beginning to 1915 which seems to match the upward slope between 1919 and 1945, albeit at a higher level. Again, it’s FDR and a radical change in how people thought about - and paid for - government.
But the upward slope seems to moderate somewhat lately (again, ignoring spikes) and the angle has reduced the measure of increase. No, it hasn’t gone down, but it’s not going up as fast, at least that’s what my eyes say.
I do realize that, it has been done many times before. However, in this ‘electronic’ age it will be much easier and profitable for governments to seize everything else. Why bother trying to trace individuals who own gold and silver when they can raid CBDC.
The idea that Agustín Carstens wants to know who spends $100 sends a shiver down my spine. I’m just surprised that people are not shouting ‘what’s it got to do with you’.
My other opinion is that increasing quality of life for “the masses” requires bigger government.
Increasing economic activity means increasing the complexity of society. One needs better transportation, better communication, a better energy grid, a better education system, etc. A primary driver of economic activity is technology, advances in which accelerates change that in turn increases the frequency of negative consequences. Greater complexity, accelerated change, and increase in negative consequences necessitates coordination and regulation. That means bigger government.
Here is the supporting evidence. During the past century when the US government has been increasing its proportion of the GDP, the following has occurred:
The average American has gotten wealthier. Americans also live longer.
Government has gotten larger because it had to in order to support increasingly complex (and increasingly wealthy) economic and social systems.
One can either have higher quality of life or smaller government. That’s the choice.