Currency Crises around the World

The Good News

The history of banking has had its share of centralized corruption, as well as occasional financial panics, and monetary crises. Governments have worked with the banking system to stabilize it, although their nationalist thinking can occasionally lead to far worse crises, such as the Irish Potato Famine and Bengal Famines under the British capitalist government, or the Holodomor and Great Chinese Famine under the Russian and Chinese communist governments.

Today, thanks to improvements in science, technology and cheap energy, the world has enjoyed rapid economic advances. The social democratic system of safety nets and welfare systems, financed by taxes on corporations, has helped people out of poverty everywhere it had been introduced (although it does have diminishing returns).

Over the last few decades, China and India have seen over a billion people lifted out of poverty:

However, all bull runs must come to an end, and a recession is looming on the horizon for many countries. The governments of both the United States and China have been revving their economic engines and the bill is coming due. When boom turns to bust, these countries will increasingly try to externalize the costs to other countries, which rely on them.

After a decade of successfully building ghost cities, China’s real estate market is in a bubble, and it’s now looking to invest in developing nations, including in Africa, to maintain its momentum. Meanwhile, the United States dollar has long been the dominant reserve currency in the world, as well as the primary mechanism for buying oil. As the G7 and BRICS, headed by USA and China, ramp up a global economic rivalry, what effect will it have on other countries? Will it lead to the same consequences as the US-Russia cold war did on so many countries particularly in Asia and South America?

Crises to Deal With

Already we see major crises developing around lack of dollars and prices of fuel, in countries from Shri Lanka to Haiti:

As if the pandemic was not bad enough for supply chains, the new wars and rivalries between larger countries are causing shortages (Ukraine and food, Taiwan and semiconductors), especially in developing countries. While most of the world is focused on Ukraine, the decade-long proxy war in Yemen is causing a massive crisis in that country:

Military Involvement

Military involvement by Russia in Ukraine, or Saudis in Yemen (with US support) have devastated the countries. Here is just a sample of USA’s involvement in the Yemen conflict, and in Haiti. Throughout the post-WW2 period, numerous proxy wars and invasions by powerful countries have exacerbated regional conflicts and exacted a massive human and economic toll on the local populations.

The People Rise Up

Five years ago, before we started Intercoin, I laid out a vision for how technology can help people self-organize and build their own solutions for their communities, bottom-up. Since then, we have built both social and economic engines to do this. And we have released them completely as open source. You can read more about the social platform Qbix and economic platform Intercoin. Now it’s time for people worldwide to stop waiting for governments to rescue us and start to build our own applications using these platforms.