Real money?

This week I bought some essential ‘stuff’ at the Infinite Loop Apple store in Cupertino. I paid for the essentials with my iPhone using ApplePay. All very seamless and simple. Science fiction in some ways.

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But, as my last blog hinted, San Francisco and the Bay area have a massive problem with homelessness. And, it seems to me, an issue of a polarised society of rich and poor. One the one hand people who, like me, can buy things with their phone. On the other a group of people who have neither a phone or money. If they do have money it’s from begging and they probably have a pocket of coppers at best.

So if our generation are moving away from cash gradually, the next generation certainly are – if they haven’t already. The generation after them will wonder what the fuss about these new fangled plastic fivers was all about?

Which begs the question – what about those who do not have a bank account for a contactless card – or even a phone to set up ApplePay. Whilst it may be a desirable outcome of electronic money to reduce fraud and tax avoidance – it’s hard to see that it works for everyone. And for those it doesn’t work for – what next? The only real solution will be a return to bartering with an exchange of goods  or services for an equivalent benefit. But again, some of those homeless people I have seen this week are going to struggle with this concept.

The bitcoin isn’t going to work on the streets of San Francisco -or any other street for that matter?

 

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