What are Alternative Currencies?
Currency is anything that can conveniently serve as a) a medium of exchange and/or b) a store of value. Anything used as an alternative to the dominant national or multinational currency systems or which does not go through the traditional banking system can be considered a form of alternative currency. Forms of alternative currencies include crypto-currencies, mutual credit systems, vouchers, local currencies, barter systems, and time exchanges to name a few.
Facts about the FED
- The Federal Reserve was established as a private central bank. The shareholders were (and still are today) the major banks. The exact shareholdings are not public record. The creation of the central bank moved the responsibility for monetary policy from Congress to the FED.
- The Reserve Banks opened for business on November 16th, 1914. A majority of the Senate voted on the bill that passed. However debate was limited because of the impending holiday.
- One of the selling points (compiled by Herbert Hoover) given to Congress for the passage of The Federal Reserve Act was that it would eliminate the business cycle.
- A stack of currency one-mile high would contain more than 14.5 million notes.
- During fiscal year 2013, the Bureau of Engraving and Printing produced approximately 26 million notes a day, with a face value of approximately $1.3 billion.
Precious metals are rare, naturally occurring metallic chemical elements with high economic value. they are less reactive than most elements, have higher melting points than other metals, are softer, more ductile and have a high lustre. Their value is determined by: 1) rarity, 2) uses as an investment commodity and/or 3) uses in industrial processes. Today precious metals are mostly used in art, jewellery and industrial processes but once upon a time were used as common currency.
Gold – Gold is soft, malleable and can be easily melted, chiselled, carved or hammered into any shape. It has a metallic yellow appearance and doesnt tarnish, corrode, rust, deteriorate, oxidize or decay. As of 2009 China is the largest producer of Gold followed by South Africa.
According to the World Gold Council, Gold has been used as a currency since King Croesus of Lydia (an area that is now part of Turkey), around 550 BC and possibly earlier and by the late 19th Century, many of the world’s major currencies were fixed to gold at a set price per ounce, under what was called the ‘Gold Standard’. The Gold Standard was self-correcting regarding inflation and deflation of money supplies, according to the 18th century philosopher and economist David Hume, through what he called the ‘price-specie flow mechanism’. (See World Gold Council for more information on the history and future of Gold as a currency.) For IRS tax information see here>>>
Silver – Silver is a lustrous metal with a brilliant white metallic appearance. According to the AMMA ancient Egyptian records show silver was considered more precious than gold and it was used for money more than gold was. Silver also has more industrial uses than gold. Research has shown that silver promotes the growth of new cells and regeneration of large, lost skin areas.. Silver is used as an energy saver in homes windows with properties that reflect 95% of the sun’s rays. Peru and China are the largest producers of silver, Australia ranks fifth.
Time is the simplest form of currency that there is. Time banks exchange "labor hours" between participants for points collected in debit/credit recording systems (either paper or on-line). These points are measured in “time dollars” with all services rendering equal value within system based on the span of time the service was provided. Time Banks create and encourage community, resists inflation, and enables trade and cooperation within society. Also, IRS has ruled that Time Bank systems are not taxable as it falls without their definition of a "barter system" because the term "does not include arrangements that provide solely for the informal exchange of similar services on a noncommercial basis." See IRS P.L.R. >>>
Read about local currencies here.
Bitcoin is described as cash for the Internet. It is a decentralized peer-to-peer payment network that is powered completely by its users with no central authority or middlemen. While Bitcoin is not anonymous at least not without using a mixer service, it does offer an increasingly wide accepted alternative to the dominant credit/debit transactions made online. There are more than $1.5 Billion in circulation with many millions of Bitcoins being exchanged everyday. Bitcoin is accepted by companies large and small including Paypal, Dell.com, AirBaltic Airlines, Microsoft, Mozilla, Wikipedia, and others. Bitcoins are acquired from Bitcoin Exchanges, by mining bitcoin, or privately in exchange for a good or service. (read more)
Litecoin is a peer-to-peer Internet currency that enables instant payments to anyone in the world. It is based on the Bitcoin protocol but differs from Bitcoin in that it can be efficiently mined with consumer-grade hardware. Litecoin provides faster transaction confirmations (2.5 minutes on average) and uses a memory-hard, scrypt-based mining proof-of-work algorithm to target the regular computers with GPUs most people already have. The Litecoin network is scheduled to produce 84 million currency units. One of the aims of Litecoin was to provide a mining algorithm that could run at the same time, on the same hardware used to mine Bitcoins. With the rise of specialized ASICs for Bitcoin, Litecoin continues to satisfy these goals.
Bytecoin is a first CryptoNote-based cryptocurrency. A CPU-mined coin, it's primary advantages are extraordinary transaction untraceability and unlinkability features. BCN is stated to be much more anonymous than Bitcoin and all its existing forks. The developers claim a person’s right to privacy is their primary concern and strictly observe their own privacy. Bytecoin was started on July 4th, 2012.
BCN is based on CryptoNote, an open-source technology for anonymous cryptocurrencies. It utilizes ring signature and one-time addresses for completely anonymous payments. CryptoNote is designed in a way, which makes block chain analysis impossible. CryptoNote is focused on CPU-mining in order to make the special purposes devices useless.