Cold, Hard Cash

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Recently, the Chinese have urged the “world community” – read, countries like theirs – to adopt a new currency as a counterbalance against the U.S. dollar, and as a competing reserve currency. The Chinese, it would appear, are very nervous about the value of all those greenbacks they have accumulated by selling us stuff for all those years. Quite honestly, I don’t blame them – I’m just as nervous about the value of our currency as they are, and I live here!

But what was interesting is who hopped on board with the program. Virtually every other authoritarian regime in the world backs China’s hand. Putin in Russia, Hugo Chavez in Venezuela, and the Mullahs in Iran, not to mention the Saudis, have all called for a new currency to rid the world of the vile dollar. Why, even our own Treasury Secretary Geithner, representing the authoritarian regime currently in possession of the White House, has come out in favor of an alternative to the dollar.

Since I share the concern of the Chinese, I am moved by the spirit of globalist solidarity to give them some suggestions about this new currency.

First, it will need a name. Since it will not be tied to a single nation, it needs a broad name. For example, the common currency adopted by the European nations is appropriately called the “euro.” Since the nations clamoring most loudly for a new currency aren’t all on one continent, but instead share only an authoritarian or dictatorial political system, may I suggest we call their new currency the “authoro”? Having settled upon a plausible name, we need to design this currency. In my admittedly limited acquaintance with currencies, America’s is (alas) unique in its ugliness. Dull green, dead presidents – tres tacky! No, the authoro needs to be aesthetically stimulating, as befits the elegance of its origins.

So, on the front side of the authoro I suggest that we put the mugs of dead dictators. I realize this may be a tad controversial – living dictators such as Putin, Chavez, and Fidel may be appalled at the thought that they won’t be honored, but we must insist on standards.

Yet even here, questions remain. By what criteria should we select dead dictators’ portraits? I confess this is a knotty issue, but I would humbly suggest that we do it approximately in accordance with the number of people they killed. So, for example, the one authoro note (“AI”) might feature Ur-fascist Benito Mussolini, who strutted a lot but in fact killed relatively few people, compared to his followers Hitler and Stalin. The A5 note should bear Lenin’s visage, since he also killed relatively few, not for want of desire or effort, but because he was felled by a stroke before he could kill the millions he certainly would have, had he lived to old age.

The Al0 note might well feature the Ayatollah Khomeini, the Iranian Islamo-fascist so admired by Jimmy Carter. Khomeini killed hundreds of thousands of “undesirables.” The A20 might display Pol Pot, who managed to kill about 2 million Cambodians. For the A50 note, surely Hitler would be appropriate. His death camps killed 11 million.

Now, I know what you Pol Pot supporters will argue. You will say that while your guy only killed a couple of million innocent people, far fewer than Adolf, he killed a higher percentage of the population. I will not gainsay you. I am open to all suggestions. Still, can we not all amicably agree on Josef Stalin for the Al00 note? I mean, come on folks, even the most niggardly reckoning would put his killing total at 20 million. Why, his trick of starving the nation of Ukraine would, by itself, have to give him a score of 6 million.

And I simply will not brook contradiction regarding the A500. It has to feature Mao, who exterminated 60 million – no piker he.

But what of the reverse side of the authoro? Its symbolism must capture the flavor of tyrannies as disparate as those of Russia” Iran” China” and Ho Chi Minh’s Vietnam. That immediately rules out (say) Lubyanka prison, since it looks nothing like (say) the killing fields of Cambodia.

This calls for some creativity. Being only an American, the best I can do is suggest George Orwell’s image of a boot stomping on a human face. Add a catchy title, such as “In Secret Police We Trust,” and you have a world-class currency.

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