Leading with Money Matters – Almighty Dollar

Go Lean Commentary

If you cannot beat them, join them … then beat them – New Twist on Old Adage

The plan to optimize the Caribbean societal engines entails confederating all of the 30 member-states in the region. This includes the American territories of Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. The confederation plan also entails consolidating all the currencies into the one Caribbean Dollar (C$).

Wait, what?!

Do we think we can wrestle The Almighty US Dollars from these US Territories and make them use C$?

Who are we kidding?! What are we smoking?! The Almighty Dollar is the World’s reserve currency!

Yes, there is the cultural concept of The Almighty Dollar from which so many artistic developments have emerged; (source: Wikipedia). The concept refers the idiom often used to satirize obsession with material wealth, or with capitalism in general. The phrase implies that money is a kind of deity. The following is a sample of artistic outputs with that exact title:

Are “we” planning to supplant The Almighty Dollar from usage by Caribbean people? The answer is No! There is no plan to deviating from the US$. Rather the plan is for the Caribbean Union Trade Federation (CU) and the Caribbean Central Bank (CCB) to join the US dollar, or rather for the US dollar to join us. This plan is eloquently featured in the book Go Lean…Caribbean with this concise quotation (Page 32):

CCB – Mixed Basket – Monetary Strength
An obscure Murphy’s Law states “when people claim that it’s the principle, and not the money, chances are, it’s the money”. There are more important things in life than money, but somehow all these things can be bought/sold … for money. The CU strategy is to consolidate monetary reserves for the region into one currency, the Caribbean Dollar, managed by the technocratic Caribbean Central Bank. The C$ will be based on a mixed-basket of foreign reserves (US dollars, Euros, British pounds & [Japanese] Yens). This strategy allows the CU to negotiate with sufficient economic strengths.

So the Go Lean book depicts more than just a plan, it serves as a roadmap for the establishment of the technocratic CU, and the allied CCB to manage the monetary-currency affairs of this region. The book describes the breath-and-width of the CCB and the Caribbean Dollar as a Single Currency. With the US$ as a subset of the currency basket, we need all the dollars we can get to strengthen the foundation of the C$ currency.

The C$ manifest as an electronic currency, more so than coins or notes.

This manifestation requires further explanation. In a previous blog-commentary, the analogy of casino money was presented. Consider this excerpt:

[Casino] tokens, chips and e-Cards … become a nominal or fiat currency themselves; their value is set by the issuer to be any denomination they want – they may choose to make $100 chips Blue, $1000 chips Green and $10,000 chips Red or any combination. The only thing that matters is the cash-out process: when the gamers wants to receive real world currency value for any chips in hand.

Money is not just currency and currency is not just money. Currency relates to a national designation (US dollar, British pounds, Chinese Yuan, etc.) or a regional designation like the Euro or the Eastern Caribbean/EC dollar. Money, on the other hand is a matter of four (4) functions:

  • A Medium …
  • A Measure …
  • A Standard …
  • A Store …

Casino currencies (tokens, chips and e-Cards) perform all these 4 functions; and more …

Desisting from economic fallacies, there is a dose of reality in the Go Lean roadmap: the US will not allow its territories to wean off the US dollar as the currency base. But there is no controversy if the Caribbean dollar is an electronic currency for PR and USVI.

This is the plan!

This commentary is the 3rd of a 5-part series from the movement behind the book Go Lean … Caribbean in consideration of Money Matters for leading the Caribbean down a different path from their status quo. This commentary asserts that there is a place for The Almighty US Dollar in the Caribbean plan because the C$ will be transacted mostly as an electronic currency or e-Money. The other commentaries in the series are cataloged as follows:

  1. Leading with Money Matters: Follow the Jobs
  2. Leading with Money Matters: Competing for New Industries
  3. Leading with Money Matters: Almighty Dollar
  4. Leading with Money Matters: As Goes Housing, Goes the Market
  5. Leading with Money Matters: Lottery Hopes and Dreams

All of these commentaries relate to “how” the stewards for a new Caribbean can more easily persuade the region stakeholders to follow this empowerment roadmap. Consolidating the currency qualifies as “low hanging fruit”, new capital will result, just as a by-product of M1 Money Multiplier.  This was explained in a prior Go Lean commentary as follows:

Benefits outside of the payment transaction; the scheme increases M1, which increases available bank capital for community investments. (M1 is the measurement of currency/money in circulation – M0 – plus overnight bank deposits. As M1 values increase, there is a dynamic to create money “from thin-air”, called the money multiplier. The more money in the system, the more liquidity for investment and industrial expansion.)

Low hanging fruit, yes, but it is heavy-lifting to deliver. There is the need to optimize the technology and tactics for e-Money deployment. This is the role-responsibility for the lean, technocratic CCB to feature the agility to keep pace of technology and market changes. With such an efficient and effective delivery, it is only logical to conclude that people will “follow the money”. Then when even more money is created, people will conform, comply and capitulate even further. This is why this Go Lean/CU/CCB roadmap depicts e-Money as a hallmark of technocratic efficiency. The New York City MetroCard is an example of e-Money.

So for the Caribbean region, if we want to reform and transform our economic engines, to be better places to live, work and play, we have to dangle The Almighty Dollar” in front of our regional stakeholders. Surely, then will we get everyone’s attention.

This CU/CCB/Go Lean roadmap therefore urges the Caribbean Dollar as a Single Currency for the full Caribbean region. In effect this make the region a Single Market. These are the 3 prime directives for the Single Market:

  • Optimization of the economic-banking engines in order to grow the regional economy and create 2.2 million new jobs.
  • Establishment of a security apparatus to ensure public safety and protect the resultant economic engines.
  • Improvement of Caribbean governance to support these engines, including a separation-of-powers between the member-states and CU federal agencies.

As related in that previous commentary, a Single Currency in the Caribbean – for the Caribbean – is a BIG idea for reforming and transforming the economic engines of the 42 million people among our 30 member-states (including Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands); The Go Lean book stresses that our effort must likewise be a regional pursuit, and it must also optimize our currency landscape. This was an early motivation for the roadmap, as pronounced in the opening Declaration of Interdependence (Pages 12 – 13):

xi. Whereas all men are entitled to the benefits of good governance in a free society, “new guards” must be enacted to dissuade the emergence of incompetence, corruption, nepotism and cronyism at the peril of the people’s best interest. The Federation must guarantee the executions of a social contract between government and the governed.

xxiv. Whereas a free market economy can be induced and spurred for continuous progress, the Federation must install the controls to better manage aspects of the economy: jobs, inflation, savings rate, investments and other economic principles. Thereby attracting direct foreign investment because of the stability and vibrancy of our economy.

The Go Lean book provides 370-pages of turn-by-turn instructions on “how” to adopt new community ethos, plus the strategies, tactics, implementations and advocacies to execute so as to reboot, reform and transform the societal engines of Caribbean society. There is a lot of consideration in the book for establishing the CCB and a Single Currency in the region. There have also been a lot of previous blog-commentaries; consider this sample:

http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=13744 Failure to Launch – Economics: The Quest for a ‘Single Currency’
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=13365 Model of the West Africa Single Currency ECOWAS
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=10513 Transforming Money Countrywide in India
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=8381 Case Study on Central Banking for Puerto Rico
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=4166 A Lesson from Panama: The Balboa Currency
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=3858 Lesson from the ECB Model: Unveiling 1 trillion Euro stimulus program
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=360 Central Banks Can Create Money from ‘Thin Air’ – Here’s How
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=833 Profile of the Euro: One Currency, Diverse Economies

If the planners for a new Caribbean want to reform and transform the region, then we must take the lead with regional currencies. Past currency management in the region has been dysfunctional:

Go Lean book Page 316 Appendix ZB Lessons Learned: 20 years later – Trinidad & Tobago – April 1993

TT Central Bank Floating of the TT dollar

http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=467 Barbados Central Bank records $3.7m loss in 2013

So in order to introduce a new economic leadership regime to the region, we must introduce a new currency regime, too.

This is why the Go Lean/CU/CCB effort must …

Lead with Money Matters.

In summary, shepherding the economy is no simple task, the regional economy, even harder still – described as heavy-lifting. But technocratic shepherding of regional currencies is conceivable, believable and achievable.

We urge all Caribbean stakeholders – government officials, bankers and ordinary citizens – to lean-in for the currency innovations  and empowerments detailed in this Go Lean roadmap. This is how we will make our homeland a better place to live, work and play. 🙂

Download the free e-Book of Go Lean … Caribbean – now!

Sign the petition to lean-in for this roadmap for the Caribbean Union Trade Federation.


Appendix VIDEO – For The Love of Money- The O’Jays – https://youtu.be/kjuRhETwbI0

Published on Feb 5, 2010 – Classic from the great O’Jays


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