With the Federal Reserve printing vast amounts of United States dollars and Washington running enormous debts and deficits, many are concerned about the health of the nation’s currency, which some, including retiring Texas Republican Congressman Ron Paul and Euro Pacific Capital President Peter Schiff, say will lead the country to experience hyperinflation.
In response to many of these concerns, some communities across the country are trying to remedy the problem with a new currency. It was reported last year that the state of Utah unanimously passed a measure that would allow you to pay your taxes and do business in gold and silver. It was later signed into law by Republican Governor Gary Herbert.
On Saturday, Nov. 24, 2012, an End the Fed rally will be held in Little Rock, Arkansas, which is sponsored by End the Fed Arkansas and the Arkansas Libertarian Party. The event will include the introduction of the ArBuck Plan, a proposed local and equivalent currency for the State of Arkansas.
The ArBuck is a “token or unit of credit” that would be distributed by local Arkansas businesses through the method of a discount coupon or a debit card. For those who agree to accept the ArBuck, the purpose would be to establish a “stable and sustainable medium of exchange.”
Leaders of the proposal say they have performed thorough research of the plan to make sure that it complies with the law. They also ensure that the alternative currency would give businesses a “superior monetary system incorporating many of the newest technical advances in monetary science.”
Here’s how it would work:
Small business owners would agree to join the association. Members would be prompted to vote to create a standard discount and transaction fee for all of their customers who opt for the ArBuck instead of the dollar. To receive the discount, the consumers exchange their dollars for ArBucks and obtain full face value.
The recommended discount rate is 10 percent. For instance, consumers would receive 10 ArBucks for $9 and still be able to buy $10 worth of goods and services from local merchants that are a part of the movement.
Business members would later be given two options: exchanging the ArBucks back to dollars subtracting the discount rate and transaction fee or using the ArBucks to buy goods and services from other businesses that accept the ArBuck.
“Members are thus encouraged to trade with each other as much as possible to avoid paying the discount. The expense of exchanging ArBucks back into dollars will tend to keep ArBucks circulating as a medium of exchange,” wrote the Arkansas Libertarian Movement in its profile of the ArBuck. “Unlike Federal Reserve Dollars, which are issued as a debt, ArBucks will be issued as a credit to the community. This makes a huge difference in creating prosperity for everyone.”
As the ArBucks begin to circulate, the dollars would begin to accumulate in a reserve. This could lead to converting a significant amount of dollars into gold and silver coins, which would be a hedge to the devaluation of the dollar.
It is believed by proponents of this plan that local values would stabilize, small businesses in the community would thrive because multi-national corporations succeed due to a currency like the dollar and local workers would be paid in ArBucks and use it throughout the area.
“In the event of the collapse of the U.S. Dollar due to deficit spending and hyperinflation, ArBucks would provide the People of Arkansas with a backup or fail safe medium of exchange that would keep us working to produce and purchase local goods and services essential to our survival,” concluded the Libertarian organization.
The plan has yet to be presented to any Arkansas officials, but proponents do plan to lobby the capitol to educate the politicians and to receive “their blessing.” However, Dugan King, author of the ArBuck plan, noted that it does not require government action.
“At this stage we are promoting the concept. We will be organizing events such as an Artist contest to design the logo for the debit card and the look of the coupons, which will require a series of designs for each denomination,” stated King in an interview with Economic Collapse News.
The outspoken and former Russia Today host Adam Kokesh, founder and chair of The Free and Equal Elections Foundation Christina Tobin, Libertarian Party congressional candidate Chris Hayes and Dugan King, the founder of the ArBuck Association, will be the featured speakers at the rally outside the Old State House following a brief stop at the Fed.
Throughout the year, there have been many state legislators that have attempted to generate approval from their state governments to issue their own currency or at least possibly exploring it as an option. There have been at least 13 states this year, including Tennessee, Georgia, South Carolina and Iowa.
“In the event of hyperinflation, depression, or other economic calamity related to the breakdown of the Federal Reserve System,” said North Carolina Republican Representative Glen Bradley in a currency bill he introduced last year. “The State’s governmental finances and private economy will be thrown into chaos.”
Meanwhile, communities have already initiated their own currencies. One example is the Berkshire region of Massachusetts, which has already begun issuing BerkShares.
“The ArBuck is inspired by Ben Franklin’s Pennsylvania Scrip and the Berkshare currency of Massachussetts,” added King.
Towns across the globe have been inspired by BerkShares and have started the process of local alternative currencies based on the model of BerkShares. The Lewes pound was started by the town of Essex in England and the Totnes pound is being circulated in Devon, England.
This article was updated Nov. 22, 2012 at 7:15 p.m. to include quotes from an interview with Dugan King.