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Senate dismisses 95% of cash ban submissions

Only 5% of submissions have been accepted. Photo: YYT

A new inquiry into controversial legislation to ban cash transactions exceeding $10,000 has been met with yet another wave of public concern through parliamentary submissions.

The Economics Legislation Committee have subsequently alerted submitters that only 130 of 2,600 submissions — 5% of the total — will be published when the inquiry hands down their findings in February.

CHERRY-PICKING SUBMISSIONS

Funeral directors, Gumtree, Flight Centre and many concerned citizens are amongst a group who have submitted concerns to a Senate committee examining new cash ban legislation.

They have warned the proposals may actually increase illegal activity and describe how the prospect of negative interest rates could leave ordinary Australians caught up in laws supposed to crack down on the ‘black economy’.

Our good friend and Australian Roundtable Podcast panelist, Lindsay “The Silverfox”, was one of these voices who submitted a lengthy list of concerns to the ongoing inquiry. He is a snippet:

To Whom It May Concern,

I vehemently oppose the cash ban legislation.

Well over twenty years ago, those who had read Carroll Quigley’s 1350 page historical opus Tragedy and Hope, were aware that banks were trying to bring in a cashless society.

“…[T]he powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert by secret agreements arrived at in frequent private meetings and conferences.”

“The substantive financial powers of the world were in the hands of these investment bankers (also called ‘international’ or ‘merchant’ bankers) who remained largely behind the scenes in their own unincorporated private banks.”

This dominance of investment bankers was based on their control over the flows of credit and investment funds in their own countries and throughout the world.” (my emphasis)

These ‘international investment bankers’ have finally arrived at their end game in Australia and are using this government as their toadies.

You people seem to forget that you, as elected representatives of the people of the Commonwealth of Australia, are not elected dictators, and you must carry out The Will of the Australian people, not foreign corporations and you “have power to make laws for the peace, order and good government of the Commonwealth with respect to:- Section 51. (i.) to (xxxix.) of the Constitution.

Cash restrictions will not remove the black economy or tax evasion.

The government already have all the powers required to stamp out these activities and they do not use them. Cash restrictions will simply control the law abiding Australians. 

Please do your job, act lawfully and on behalf of  the Australian people, you are paid well enough. If you can not do that, then please resign and allow someone else to carry out the will of the people.

Sincerely

Lindsay Johnson.”

Lindsay’s sentiments echoed many Australians who have submitted in mass to the committee since the plans were first introduced, causing pressure on authorities to delay or scrap the legislation.

In response, the committee have announced they will only publish 130 submissions, with most from individuals only concerned with what they argue is an assault on their ‘ability to manage money’:

“Dear Submitter,

Thank you for your submission to the Senate Economics Legislation Committee’s inquiry into the provisions of the Currency (Restrictions on the Use of Cash) Bill 2019. The committee has accepted it as correspondence.

Following the call for submissions to the inquiry, the committee accepted a significant amount of submissions as correspondence from individuals across the country.

Over 2,600 items of correspondence, both electronically and in hard copy, were received. Due to the large number, the committee has decided not to publish every item it received on its website. 

Instead, the committee will publish a selection which represent the recurring views expressed by submitters.

Thank you for your submission to the Senate Economics Legislation Committee’s inquiry into the provisions of the Currency (Restrictions on the Use of Cash) Bill 2019. The committee has accepted it as correspondence.

Following the call for submissions to the inquiry, the committee accepted a significant amount of submissions as correspondence from individuals across the country.

Yours sincerely

Mr Mark Fitt | Committee Secretary.”

Looks like they didn’t follow Lindsay’s advice too well, as the majority of voices in this debate will not even be heard when the final report is handed down.

However, the plan continues to come under heavy criticism from inside of parliament, while there has been a widespread community campaign against the move.

MOVING FORWARD

The moves follow similar controversy caused earlier in the month when the government bypassed parliamentary procedures by pushing the controversial legislation through the House of Representatives before the new inquiry concludes.

This is despite proposals to limit cash transactions over $10,000 being delayed following a first committee review in August — continuing ahead with the plans against advice from the report.

The first report recommended the bill was be set aside and referred to the current committee until February 2020, giving relief that the plans had met a minor setback.

This setback meant the government could not stick to the original schedule of banning cash transactions from 1 January 2020, as was the initial plan.

In the debate in parliament, the government faced opposition from some of its own MPs, as well as several lobby groups including the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI), CPA Australia and the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA).

A number of politicians speaking before parliament noted significant community opposition, including fears the laws could restrict freedom and give authorities greater control.

Critics argue that once it takes effect, there will be little to stop the threshold from slipping down drastically to $5,000 or $3,000, with lower thresholds already in effect elsewhere in the world.

The Victorian and Tasmanian synod of the Uniting Church has urged the committee to ensure there is a review in three years to see if the $10,000 threshold can be reduced. 

It also believes there should be no exemption of digital currencies and argues the government not exclude private and personal payments from the laws.

“This will open a loophole for money laundering activities, allowing criminals to “gift” the proceeds of crime to associates,” it said.

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CASH BAN SAGA

In August, a new public consultation revealed that large cash transactions will soon come to an end in Australia, with the Currency (Restrictions of the Use of Cash) Act 2019 set to ban large cash payments made to businesses for goods and services.

Under a radical change to currency laws, it will become a criminal offence to make or accept a payment from businesses in excess of $10,000 cash.

Following the 2018-19 Budget, the recently formed ‘Black Economy Standing Taskforce’ provided a number of recommendations on necessary actions needed to regulate the cash economy. 

The government said it supported the majority of the recommendations, including potentially requiring wages to be paid into bank accounts, effectively outlawing cash-in-hand payments.

The maximum penalty is up to two years imprisonment and/or $25,200 in fines, and transactions equal or in excess of this amount would need to be made using the electronic payment or by cheque.

Many are worried the plans are a key part of Australia’s ongoing shift towards a cashless society.

For example, market analyst East & Partners suggests that if this trend continues, cash payments across Australian businesses are predicted to fall below 5% by 2019 and below 2% by 2022 — creating a virtually cashless society.

This growing consumer preference for digital payments is reflected in a rapid decline in cheque use and ATM withdrawals, which together account for fewer than two million transactions a day, compared with almost 23 million each day in 2018 via the digital economy.

Critics argue the ongoing decline in cash payments is largely fueled by the introduction of these new payment technologies, and will lead Australia to a path of complete financial control.

The committee’s final report is due to be tabled in the Senate on 7 February 2020, and will be available on the committee’s website at that time.


RELATED CONTENT

‘Open a loophole’: Government under pressure to delay or ditch $10,000 cash limit plan | SMH.com.au

Cash ban continues against inquiry advice | TOTT News

Plans to limit cash transactions over $10,000 | TOTT News

This is why the IMF wants to stop you from using cash | ABC News

Australia’s move towards a cashless society | TOTT News



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2 Comments on “Senate dismisses 95% of cash ban submissions”

  1. Thunnus Maccoyi
    November 27, 2019 at 10:36 #

    If people really are that stupid and blind then they deserve everything they get.

  2. Chris Atty
    November 27, 2019 at 14:56 #

    what fu%$ing hope have we got ?????

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