What happens in the future if we travel bloggers cannot travel freely?
This may sound a bit far-fetched, but a paradigm shift has occurred since the financial crisis started 4 years ago.
You may ask,”How could US citizens not be allowed to travel freely?”
In an earlier post I discussed the new passport applications for US citizens (click here to read the post) that are being presented for review. The form’s been changed to include questions about the doctor who helped in your birth, your families history, and many other more “intrusive” questions.
I received a few comments that the form would be almost impossible to fill out properly.
What instigated this post was the latest action by The Federal Reserve Bank (The FED) to begin monitoring social media sites. What they’re interested in is who is talking about the The FED and what they are saying.
I’m 59 yrs. old, and I have never seen a government action where the desire is to find out who’s talking about whom, and then invite them for a friendly chat over a cup of coffee and talk about “things”
When governments take actions like this, it is to control what’s being said and punish those who do not “toe the line”. Punishment could be the inability to leave the country.
(The government is increasingly monitoring Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites for tax delinquents, copyright infringers and political protesters. – The Wall Street Journal)
If you look at the actions by the US government since 9/11, it is more to control the citizens of the US. than it is the terrorists
There is the “Patriot Act“.
This vastly increased the scope of monitoring of US citizens. Not only through wiretaps, but also financial transactions – both domestic and foreign – and the use of the US Military in domestic affairs. (All the government needs to do is accuse someone of “international terror” and the military steps in and due diligence is thrown out the window)
(In some cases, the government appears to be engaged in deception. The Boston Globe recently quoted a Massachusetts district attorney as saying that some police officers were going undercover on Facebook as part of their investigations.)
The new TSA organization of the US government has had it’s fair share of unkind news. It is more difficult to re-enter the USA than it has ever been. And really, it is more difficult to leave!
(Wired magazine reported last month that In-Q-Tel, an investment arm of the Central Intelligence Agency, has put money into Visible Technologies, a software company that crawls across blogs, online forums, and open networks like Twitter and YouTube to monitor what is being said.)
There is the new “currency controls” that go into effect in 2012 – if you ain’t got the money honey, it sure is tough to travel.
This is what the “currency controls” state – “Any funds transferred from the US to any overseas account are subject to a new tax equal to 30 percent of the total amount of the payment – unless the payment is sent to a foreign bank that has agreed to report all American-owned accounts automatically and electronically to the US government.”
Of course the foreign banks are up in arms about this. The kicker is that if they do not toe the line with the IRS, then The FED cuts of the flow of funds that it has sent out over the last 4 years. (Yup, the US sends financial support to foreign banks) (IE – the banks of the world are broke!)
These controls are infringing on US citizens freedoms and movement of assets. You can bet in Europe and other areas there are similar laws on the books, or governments are ready to enact them. The paradigm shift is “how to control citizens and currency”.
(Remember what happened after 9/11 – you could not get a flight to go anywhere)
To avoid having any of this interfere with your travels, I suggest 3 actions:
1) Open an offshore bank account
2) Establish an offshore entity
3) Obtain a second passport
If I am wrong on this “traveling freely”, and citizens are not limited in going in and out of their home countries, you have lost nothing – might have even gained some in your foreign bank account or offshore entity.
If I am right, and you do something about it now, then this will allow you to move more freely throughout the world – to such places as your offshore entity.
You’ll also have money outside your home country to support your travels and lifestyle with your offshore bank account.
Cheers for now
PS – Follow the actions in Europe with Greece, Spain, Italy and even France. These countries are all on the verge of default. (As is the USA) This was “supposedly” resolved last summer with the Greek debt – guess not!
As Europe Union struggles with the debt of its members, the controls will increase on the average citizen – they cannot have money moving out of the countries.
“Protection” of borders may arise making it impossible to travel into a country.
Visa costs may increase (The US increased visa costs to fund the border fence with Mexico) and there maybe entrance/exit fees established.
Again, if I am wrong, you’ve lost nothing but some time.
If I am right, you gain much more freedom than those that did not take action.