[ExI] bitcoin and ransom: where does one find pitchforks?

spike spike66 at att.net
Sun Feb 21 19:28:11 UTC 2016

Bob quoted:
>.Nor did I get to tell them the "good news" about how easily the government
can, using a fiat currency and total command of the whole banking system,
generate a rising stock market, debt market, housing market and boost
consumer spending -- an economic miracle of Biblical proportions! -- anytime
it wants to. 
Anytime. It. Wants. To.
Of course, if the government tried such monetary stupidity on such a scale,
prices of everything would go up, including the prices of food, shelter and
energy. Then, for the resultant mobs of hungry, wet and/or cold people, it
would be time for flaming torches and pitchforks, riots in the streets,
starving hordes of angry peasants storming government buildings,
revenge-of-the-sheep kind of thing. end quote

This has occurred to many of us.  No one foresaw interest rates would drop
to practically nothing and stay there, de-incentivizing the masses from
having savings accounts.  Think on the implications of that for a moment.
The US government debt has grown to such proportions that the Federal
Reserve cannot raise interest rates or even allow them to rise by natural
causes, not now, not later, for world's biggest debtor would be unable to
pay the interest on its own debt, never mind continuing to borrow, upon
which it has become utterly dependent for just ordinary operations.

This all leads to an essential question.  If circumstances arise to spawn
the revenge-of-the-sheep uprising described above, how could it be done?
Everyone knows that angry mobs (as depicted in all the old-time movies) all
have necessary and well-known common factors: torches and pitchforks.  It
has been years since I have even seen a pitchfork.  They aren't available at
the local hardware store, for the locals would have no idea what they are
for, other than the obvious: demonstrating the anger and disapproval of a
rioting mob.  A devastating shortage arises at the critical moment.

As for torches, I have lived over half a century and have never seen one,
other than the old movies, such as that scene where the town's people came
to destroy Dr. Frankenstein's lab.  I suppose we could make do with
flashlights, but you know, the wimpy practicality of that solution really
doesn't have the emotional punch, the whole style and dashing macho boldness
of an honest-to-Hollywood authenticity of a flaming torch.  I want to know
how the heck they made those things back in the old days.  I want a torch,
just in case.  I want a pitchfork too.

So. Modern economic emergency brought about by something as mundane as a
ransomware virus locking up the local banking system, angry mobs of sheeple,
with no torches and no pitchforks, with nowhere in particular to go, for the
local branch doesn't have a vault full of currency anyway.  It has a stack
of twenties in the ATM, if they want to mob that device for some odd and
pointless reason.  Even that wouldn't have even the impact of that scene in
Jimmy Stewart's "It's a Wonderful Life" when the locals did a bank run.  Our
money is now in the form of microscopic magnetic domains spinning on discs
somewhere in a cloud.  Do you even know what that means?  Neither do I.  

The little bit of paper currency we now see is almost an oddity, is it not?
Don't you feel the need to wash your hands after just touching the stuff?
Who knows who has handled that currency or where it has been?  We are told
by our political leaders that most of "the wealth" is in the possession of
the very few who have money up the wazoo.  Think about it.  The mind

After seeing what happens when hackers can lock up a hospital, and the
resulting chaos, we need to think long and hard about the fragility of
modern society, completely dependent as we are, on the technology we have

A parting shot, perhaps overlooked by some please.  Note that the hospital
in question paid ransom, judging it far cheaper than the alternative and in
desperate need of their computer systems, without which a modern hospital
cannot operate.  The bad guys were paid off in bitcoin, untraceable
email-able money.  They got away with it.  This shows that now kidnappers
are back in business, for there is now a practical way for them to deliver a
demand anonymously and to collect the ransom.  Any item that can be stolen
which is a hundred or a thousand times more valuable to the original owner
than on any resale market (grandma's ashes for instance, or your hard-copy
photo albums) is now subject to theft and ransom, for there is a practical
way for the thieves (or kidnappers) to demand and receive payment


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