Part 173- Money

Part 173- Money

 Guess what Ireland’s famous for. Apple. Yeah, no seriously. I’m not joking. Up until like last Thursday I was sure Ireland was mainly known for it’s landscape and Irish whiskey and shamrocks. We’re adding Apple to the list now. Apple’s main headquarters are in Cupertino, California. Which now explains why I have Cupertino’s time zone on my phone despite it not being on the list. (The dots finally have connected.) Anyways, the main focus is on Apple’s other headquarters. The European headquarters.

Apple’s European headquarters are located  in Holly Hill, Co Cork in Ireland. I assure you there is something very important regarding why Apple chose to have it’s headquarters there, but before I explain, let’s go over basics. 

  • Shell Companies
  • Money Laundering
  • Cayman Islands/Swiss Accounts
  • Tax Avoidance
  • Panama Papers
So, shell companies. They are similar to what they sound like as they ARE shells of companies. They are pretty much like an empty shell. 
There’s nothing inside. It’s a firm with no current business activity or significant assets. Shell companies aren’t necessary illegal, but are sometimes used illegitimately for  reasons such as disguising business ownership from law enforcement or the public. But legitimately, they can be used to store a company’s money it’s raising before it launches, or for security reasons such as working in an unsafe region or country. 
When used illegitimately, shell companies are usually used during money laundering. Money laundering is pretty much just “laundering” money made through criminal activity like drug trafficking or terrorist funding,  in order to make it look clean. This money is, well, dirty, so so it needs to be laundered before it can actually be used. This is to make sure the money can be used effectively, and so there is no suspicion when using it. There are three parts in money laundering: placement, layering, and integration. The first, placement, comes from the need to deposit the money in legitimate financial institutions. The only way to do so is if it comes from legitimate sources, so often a business owned by the criminal organization is used. For example, a restaurant may inflate the receipts to funnel illegal cash through the restaurant and into the restaurant’s bank account. The next is layering. Layering consists of concealing the money through a series of transactions. This is to make it difficult to trace the original source. Layering is often done through chain-hopping which is the act of converting one cryptocurrency into another moving from one blockchain to another, mixing/tumbling which is the act of blending various transactions across several exchanges, or cycling. (More can be found at these links: and
Not only that, shell companies can be used for tax avoidance. Tax avoidance is an action taken to lessen tax liability and maximize after-tax income. Simply put, finding a way to avoid paying taxes in a legal manner.  The best way to do so is setting up a shell company in a tax haven. 

What’s a tax haven? 

Before I explain let me interrupt. Happy New Year and Merry late Christmas. I actually spent my Christmas overseas and visited the Cayman Islands. We took a tour and had a lot of fun on our trip. In fact, on the tour we learned a lot of interesting facts about the islands, including one very important thing. The Cayman Islands have no income or withholding tax imposed on the individual. So like if something is $10, that’s all you have to pay. Literally. That makes the Cayman Islands a tax haven. Since no taxes are imposed, shell companies are commonly set up in the Cayman Islands to reduce tax bills and just get out of paying taxes legally. Another example includes Hong Kong, Switzerland, Panama, and even Ireland. See where I’m getting to? 
Ireland has a low tax rate of 12.5% , making it one of the lowest tax paying countries compared to the U.S. with a 35% rate. This is a reason why Apple long many other companies such as Google have shifted headquarters there. According to BBC, Apple created an avoidance structure that “helped it reduce it’s tax rate on profits outside the US to the extent that its foreign tax payments rarely amounted to more than 5% of its foreign profits.” In some years it’s dipped below 2%, and one Irish Apple Company had a tax rate for one year of 0.005% . For Apple, if tax haven benefits were not used, it would have owed the U.S. government $65.4 billion in taxes. However, this is about to change as Ireland announced in October 2021 that it will change it’s tax rate to 15% in 2024 (originally 2023). 
This entire process of tax avoidance is not new. It’s been around for a while. In 2016 11.5 million legal documents-called the Panama Papers- were leaked, containing personal financial information about many wealthy individuals and public officials. It exposed a network of 214,000 tax havens involving these officials and entities from 200 nations. Although most of the documents showed no illegal or inappropriate behavior, some of the shell companies set up by the firm from which the documents were leaked, were revealed to have been used for illegal purposes such as tax evasion and fraud. Hence, shell companies can be interpreted as illegal and used illegitimately. 
People with huge companies like Nike or Apple often do this for many reasons. One could be for greed. With so much money one would want to keep it to themselves. Not only that, with so much money they would have to pay higher taxes. Arguments against this include, “using the same amount of road someone making less than them uses”. Why should they pay more when they use the same services as others? As a result, they’ll try to pay lower taxes or even get out of it completely. Such methods as we’ve discussed include tax havens and shell companies. 
Why should we care about this? Well for starters, they aren’t paying their taxes. As I’ve mentioned before, taxes are essential to providing us benefits such as public school dunking, building roads, and other public services. Everyone pays a fair share of their income that they worked hard for these taxes and yet these big companies who have more wealth decide to reduce their amount simply because they want their money to themselves. If that’s so then why don’t we also keep our money to ourselves? Taxes take away a huge portion and we could easily use that money for so many other things instead. It’s simply not fair. If they can “escape” paying the tax in full amount, they why not us? Then what would happen? Would we be able to experience the luxuries of maintained, smooth roads, or having public education or other services? Most likely not. We need to pay our taxes, no matter how much money you make. It’s to benefit us and make our lives better. 
Sources + More Reading:
:. (2019, July 23). AML – Shell companies, front companies and the misuse of real estate. Finextra Research.—shell-companies-front-companies-and-the-misuse-of-real-estate

Anti money laundering (AML). (2005, July 21). Investopedia.

Corporate Finance Institute. (2022, November 8). Tax haven

GB, J. (2017, November 7). Where does Apple Pay taxes? Medium.

List of the world’s most notorious tax havens. (n.d.).

Lyons, K. (2021, October 7). Ireland’s status as tax haven for tech firms like Google, Facebook, and Apple is ending. The Verge.

Money laundering: What it is and how to prevent it. (2003, November 24). Investopedia.

Paradise Papers reporting team. (2017, November 6). Paradise papers: Apple’s secret tax bolthole revealed. BBC News.

Shell corporations: Everything you need to know. (n.d.). Business Intelligence Platform – Data on 13+ Million Companies – Red Flag Alert.

Tax avoidance is a legal way to limit taxes; Tax evasion is not. (2007, May 10). Investopedia.

Tax brackets and federal income tax rates: 2022-2023. (2018, January 24). NerdWallet.,taxable%20income%20and%20filing%20status

Tax evasion. (2003, November 24). Investopedia.

What is a shell company (Shell Corporation)? – SmartAsset blog. (2022, September 27). SmartAsset.,customers%20with%20products%20or%20services

What is a shell Corporation? How it’s used, examples and legality. (2003, November 26). Investopedia.,law%20enforcement%20or%20the%20public

Part 172- Cryptocurrency and CBDC

Part 172- Cryptocurrency and CBDC

Cryptocurrency. We’ve probably all heard about it by now. Bitcoin….and bitcoin…and yeah…That’s all I really know (knew) about it. That was before I got a WONDERFUL- emphasize wonderful- opportunity to take some time off and actually learn something about it. And really, it wasn’t that bad. So let me enlighten you a little about cryptocurrency, how it really works, and how it relates to Central Bank Digital Currencies. (CBDC).

So let’s start with the basics. What exactly is cryptocurrency? Well, for starters, cryptocurrency is “a digital payment system that doesn’t rely on banks”, or a third-party, “to verify transactions.” In short, it’s a digital currency that is an alternative form of payment by using encryption algorithms. (We’ll get into more of that later.)

Cryptocurrency is created through something called mining. No, not like mining for gold. (Although it would be funny.) But really, mining is “the process of validating cryptocurrency transactions and creating new units of cryptocurrency”. It uses powerful computer hardware and software to-drumroll please- solve complex math problems. Yep. Cryptocurrency is literally made from solving complex math problems. Using powerful computer hardware and software, of course.

But really this is more complex. You see, cryptocurrencies use blockchain technology. A blockchain is a distributed database or ledger that is shared among the nodes of a computer network. Think of it as a ledger, or even a database. As a database, a blockchain stores information electronically in digital format. It’s a form of a public ledger, which is “a series of blocks on which transaction details are recorded after suitable authentication and verification by the designated network participants.” (It’s best known for their crucial role in cryptocurrency systems, for maintaining a secure and decentralized record of transactions.

Compared to a typical database, a blockchain structures its data into blocks which are strung together, rather than into tables. This structure makes an irreversible timeline of data when implemented in a decentralized nature. As a block is filled it finalizes and becomes part of this timeline.

So why would cryptocurrency be made? What was the main purpose? Anything made is often to make something easier. We always innovate something new to make what we’re already working with easier, faster, and simpler.
Well, for starters it was to engage in financial transactions without exclusively relying on banks or governments. When we usually partake in transactions, a third-party, such as a bank, is used to do so.
Whenever we perform transactions, our money doesn’t immediately get transferred to the other person. For transactions from different banks, it can take one to five days. Why does this happen? Well, it’s excessive to continuously pay a transaction to another bank in small amounts. If I make a transaction of $10 dollars to another person, someone else could be making a transaction of $50 to another. Instead of continuously processing transactions in amounts like this, something called the Delta of Transactions takes place. This process happens over a periodic basis.
So let’s say I make a transaction of $30 to someone at another bank, and someone at that bank needs to pay a transaction of $10 to someone at mine. Instead of updating a don performing every transaction, the banks will wait until the end of the day, and transfer the net amount to each other. In this case, since the other bank will ‘gain’ $30 and ‘lose’ $10, my bank will transfer $20 to the other bank. That is the net amount.

What cryptocurrency does is take out this step. Because we rely on the bank or a third-party to deliver the transaction, this Delta of Transactions process takes place, and our payment gets transferred after a while. But with cryptocurrency, it happens immediately. The thing with cryptocurrency is that your money stays with you. Compared to all your money being with the bank, you have your money. So whenever you want to process a transaction, it happens immediately because you’re doing it yourself. The only problem is that, if your money is with you, you could lose all of it. Cryptocurrency needs a cryptocurrency wallet. It’s something that stores the public and/or private keys for cryptocurrency transactions. Basically like a vault or a bank account. It holds the keys and allows you to access your coins. Because it’s with you, if you lose that ‘wallet” you end up losing all your money. If you have money stored in the bank, if you lose your wallet, you would still have money, and not have lost all of it.
However, there are certain situations where cryptocurrency is actually beneficial. Let’s take the Bahamas for example. The Bahamas consists of 70 scattered islands, and it can take over half a day to simply reach the bank. As a result, the Bahamas established a style of cryptocurrency called Sand Dollar to make money easily accessible.

So I mentioned CBDC at the very beginning. CBDC (Central Bank Digital Currency) is digital currency issued by a central bank, rather than a commercial bank. While CBDCs are controlled by a central bank, cryptocurrencies are almost always decentralized, meaning they cannot be regulated by a single authority.
CBDCs are pegged to the value of a country’s fiat currency. This fiat currency is issued and regulated by a nation’s monetary authority or central bank. ( Such as the US Treasury) In the US along with many other countries, many people do not have access to financial services. The main goal of CBDC is to “provide businesses and consumers with privacy transferability, convenience, accessibility, and financial security.” It would also reduce the risks of using digital currencies in their current form. Cryptocurrencies are highly volatile and have a constantly fluctuating value. This can cause severe financial stress in many households and affect the overall stability of an economy. Bitcoin was made anonymously. Despite being believed to be made by a pseudonym group, nobody knows who created it. That being said, they can do whatever they want with Bitcoin. Who knows if they choose to make Bitcoin valued at a high price or suddenly drop it really low. To prevent this but still provide digital currency, governments are starting to create CBDCs.
So lastly why would this be important. Well for starters, everything in this world has to do with money. There’s nothing free in this world. The world revolves around money. You go to school to get a job to earn money. You need money to get food, get a house, and perform the basic functions to live. As technology develops, cryptocurrency or even digital currency would become widely used like regular currency. We need to learn how it’s used and the benefits of disadvantages to using it so that we’re prepared in the future. If I get a job and my boss asks if I could be paid in cryptocurrency or CBDC, I need to understand what happens when I use it. Although it’s not as useful now, we would eventually get to a point in time where it would be. This would eventually become a way of payment, and we need to understand how it works. It’s our money after all.
References + Resources:
The basics about cryptocurrency. (n.d.). Go Oswego | SUNY Oswego. 

Blockchain & distributed Ledger technology (DLT). (2018, May 8). World Bank.,in%20an%20append%20only%20mode

Can RBI’s digital rupee initiative help INDIA beat the USA’s SWIFT network dominance? (2022, November 5). YouTube.

Cryptocurrency explained with pros and cons for investment. (2013, July 29). Investopedia.,use%20with%20cryptocurrencies%20and%20NFTs

Cryptocurrency vs CBDC vs digital money: What’s the difference? (2022, October 8). Business Today.

Fiat money: What it is, how it works, example, pros & cons. (2003, November 20). Investopedia.

What is a Central Bank digital currency (CBDC)? (2018, September 6). Investopedia.

What is cryptocurrency and how does it work? (2022, February 9).

What is data encryption? (2022, March 30).

Blockchain facts: What is it, how it works, and how it can be used. (2014, June 13). Investopedia.

‘FTX has been hacked’: Crypto disaster worsens as exchange sees mysterious outflows exceeding $600M. (2022, November 14). CoinDesk: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Crypto News and Price Data.
How are cryptocurrencies created? (2022, May 5). GeeksforGeeks.

Part 171- U.S. as a superpower

Part 171- U.S. as a superpower

Hey guys, so I’m back. We’re skipping the cutesy, simple posts of high school to economics. Why? Because I got dragged into the inescapable pit of it. (…) Anyways, moving on. 

America. It’s a great country. (Speaking from a biased American point of view) But to be clear, it’s a very powerful country. America is the world’s most dominant economic and military power. When mentioned, it’s naturally accepted. We don’t really take time to question how such a nation ended up at the top. We don’t stop and think about the factors that made it so, and so that’s why I want to take time to briefly explain not just how America became the strongest country in the world, but also how American currency became the most powerful. (To be clear, American currency is the main topic. It was just awkward talking about a small topic so I’m adding everything else in.) So let’s talk.

Our two leading questions are this: “How did America become the most powerful country in the world?” And, “How did the United States make the US Dollar the most powerful currency in the world?”

How did America become the most powerful country in the world?

So the United States wasn’t always a very powerful country. They were very fragile, having won independence that “was a war away from being lost”. From 1783-1898, they were a fledgling power, concerned with expanding its borders from the Atlantic to Pacific Coast to fulfil the belief of Manifest Destiny- that God had ordained for the U.S. to expand its territory and control the whole continent. But over the course of time, things began to change.

The Idea of Manifest Destiny

The first factor was a shift from an agrarian economy to an industrialized one during an Industrial Revolution in the late 1800s. This switch led to allowing the U.S. to make the necessary equipment to become a superpower. Within this time period, one major war took place, the Spanish-American War. The Spanish-American War was victorious for Americans against the crumbling Spanish Empire. In this, not only did it make for Puerto Rico and distant islands of Guam and Philippines colonies, but also allowed for America to project its power abroad through a colonial empire. From 1898-1945, America would set its sights on Asia and the Caribbean, cement its alliance with Britain and France through World Wars, and eventually, lead to America having the largest economy in the world and become the largest industrial producer.

So now let’s dig deeper. After World War II, the United States came out, unquestionably, as a superpower. Seen in both WWI and WWII, America acted as war merchants first, and then war participants. While the other countries and empires were dedicating their resources and manpower towards the war, America used its capital and manpower to instead, become the “major supplier of cotton, wheat, brass, rubber, automobile and machinery, and thousands of other goods”. This resulted in America facing one of the greatest economic booms in the world. This was seen in WWII as well, with the only participation seen when Pearl Harbor was bombed. From making so much money out of these two wars, America came out having 75% of the world’s monetary gold after WWII. Other countries were not only economically devastated, but also in ruins from the war, leaving America unscathed. Not only that, at the end of WWII after the atom bomb dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, it was undoubted the United States was indeed on another level. Emerging from the war, both America and the Soviet Union were seen as superpowers, both with very different ideas for the future.

After WWII, America set up a network of bases across the planet to allow itself to project it’s power worldwide. The Soviet Union, who wanted to spread communism, would quickly challenge this superpower. In retaliation, America would station soldiers in Japan and Europe to prevent the spread. This period of geopolitical tension between the two nations is known as the Cold War. They had open yet restricted fighting. There was no direct war, as both had access to nuclear weapons. Thus called the ‘Cold War’.

Source: {}

So now that we’ve established that, let’s talk about how the US Dollar became so powerful.

After WWII, 44 countries met in “Bretton Woods’ in July 1944 with the principal goals of creating an efficient foreign exchange system, preventing competitive devaluations of currencies, and promoting international economic growth.” ( As a result, they made the Breton Woods Agreement. Once implemented, its provisions called for the U.S. dollar to be pegged to the value of gold, and for all other currencies in the system to be pegged to the US dollar’s value. This agreement led to minimized international currency exchange rate volatility which helped international trade relations, more stability in foreign currency exchange, and currency stabilization for trade of goods and services as well as financing.

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This would help in situations where two countries look towards trading with each other, even if they didn’t trust each other. Think School provides an example as such, where Indonesia and Pakistan trade with each other. If Pakistan gives Indonesia 1 million dollars, Indonesia could easily trade that in with the U.S. for the equal amount of gold. However, if this was done in Pakistani Rupees, and let’s say 10,000 PKR= 1 gm gold, Pakistan could print more money and change it to 20,000 PKR= 1 gm gold. This could lead to a collapse in Indonesia’s value of trade. In order to prevent this, the transaction could be done in US dollars, making for the U.S. to guarantee the amount of dollars in gold. 

This Agreement also served as the creation of two major organizations today. The World Bank,and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Due to the ruins and devastation faced by countries in the war, they desperately needed funds and loans to build their country back up. So with the U.S. provided funds, the World Bank provided numerous long-term loans to countries to get them back on track. The IMF serves as a way to keep track of the global economy, assess policy makers, and lend money to countries in economic crisis.
This Agreement sealed the importance of the U.S. Dollar, and gave the Dollar its first wave of dominance.

So that was a brief explanation as to how America became a superpower. It took time, patience, and the use of some clever tactics. The result of this being the position and level to which it is at today. So, thanks for reading, and have a great day. 

Part 165- Sri Lanka Crisis

Part 165- Sri Lanka Crisis

Sri Lanka is currently going through the worst economic downturn faced since independence from Britain in 1948. Facing power outages, lack of food, bankruptcy, and overwhelmed by numerous loans, the island nation is struggling. However, it hasn’t always been this way. 

In the 19th and 20th centuries, Sri Lanka became a plantation economy famous for it’s cinnamon, rubber, and Ceylon tea, something that remains a trademark national export. The development of ports under British rule strengthened the island and made it a center of trade. It’s major economic sectors are tourism, tea export, clothing, rice production, other agricultural products, and overseas employment, especially in the Middle East. From 2005-2011, Sri Lanka’s per capita income doubled. 

However, in 2016, it’s debt started to accumulate as infrastructure started to develop. This led to a near state of bankruptcy. In the fourth quarter of 2016, there was an estimated debt of $64.9 billion. In 2018, China agreed to bail out the country with a loan of $1.25 billion to deal with foreign debt repayment spikes in 2019-2021. In September of 2021, Sri Lanka declared a major economical crisis. But how exactly did Sri Lanka fall into debt? How did such a thriving economy crash? There are three main factors that caused this. Infrastructure, COVID, and the previous ban of chemical fertilizers.

Toruism and overseas employment, both of which provided the country with an input of foreign currency, crashed due to the pandemic. People stopped traveling, during this period, and people were also losing jobs. Prior to the pandemic, the country had proudly achieved upper-middle-income status, yet today half a million people have sunk back into poverty.Apart from that, there was also a ban on fertilizers put in place, partly to save foreign exchange. However, this led to domestic rice production falling 20% in the first six months. As a result, they were forced to import $450 million worth of rice. The ban also devastates the nation’s tea crop, the primary export and source of foreign exchange. Although the policy has been suspended and the government is offering $200 million to farmers as direct compensation, it hardly makes up for the damage and suffering the ban produced. 

Today, they now heavily rely on imports from other countries. “Soaring inflation and a rapidly depreciating currency have forced Sri Lankans to cut down on food and fuel purchases as prices surge.” (foreign This has led to power cuts lasting up to 13 hours a day. The Rajapaksa government also promised tax cuts, which were enacted before the pandemic. With less money from the taxes, the government was unable to make some of these necessary purchases. 

Sri Lanka has also fallen into debt due to loans from other countries. One of them is China. Sri Lanka, situated between the key shipping route between the Malacca Straits and the Suez Canal, which links Asia and Europe. However, the only major port in Sri Lanka is the Port of Colombo, and it is catered towards container handling and is unable to provide facilities for port related industries and services. Therefore, a new port near the city of Hambantota, which has a natural harbor and is close to international shipping routes, was proposed. With the help of the Chinese government and workers, this port was built.

This relates to China’s Belt and Road Initiative; a global infrastructure development strategy developed by the Chinese government to invest in nearly 70 countries and international organizations. It’s about improving the physical infrastructure through land corridors that roughly equate to the old Silk Road. This also includes a maritime Silk Road along ports. Hambantota was built with Chinese investment to become part of this. “But the billion dollar project using loans and contractors from China became mired in controversy, and struggled to prove viable, leaving Sri Lanka saddled with growing debts.” ( In 2017, Sri Lanka agreed to give “state-owned China Merchants a controlling 70% stake in the export on a 99-year lease in return for further Chinese investment.” So basically, using a loan from China, Sri Lanka is paying Chinese workers to build this port, causing the money to go directly back to China itself. So they’ve pretty much fallen in what is called a ‘debt-trap.’ This has been seen in other parts of the world, where, “Chinese lending has also proved controversial, with contracts whose terms could give China leverage over important assets”, can be seen. Some examples include:

  • Pakistan
  • Ethiopia
  • Djibouti
  • Mongolia
  • Sri Lanka
Many more included. (These are countries listed part of the Belt and Road Initiative, and are in debt. Not all countries part of the Initiative essentially owe debt.) But what China does, is step in, offer some assistance through money/loans to solve a problem a country has. This is mainly related to large infrastructure projects like roads, railways, ports, and also the mining and energy industry. As of right now, there are more than 40 countries in this category whose debt exposure to Chinese leaders is more than 10% the size of their annual economic GDP. 
Apart from that, it’s interesting how this works. There’s not really any international law that says China cannot do something like this. There are laws for it being domestic, but not internationally. We have loan sharks domestically, and just foreign/international debt. 
Overall, I think that Sri Lanka made the mistake of doing something they couldn’t afford. At that time, during the agreement of building the port, Sri Lanka was already in debt. This was a huge risk they had to take. If it didn’t prove to be viable, as it didn’t, Sri Lanka ended up being in more debt. They shouldn’t have done something they weren’t sure about and weren’t stable to proceed with. Although China was helping them pay off some debt they had at that time, by doing so, they got themselves into a more deeper problem. Not only that, I think that the government was taking really hasty decisions just for the sake of getting money and trying to get out of the problem. This whole Hambantota port project was thought of for decades, but only now put in because China was offering to invest in it to pay off debts. I feel like they should have started this project much before instead of when they had a problem. I can’t really say much regarding the pandemic, as that was something no one could have expected. However, I think that at that time, when rice-production and other agricultural products were still going strong within exports, the government shouldn’t have done anything about it. Maybe waited until later to put in tax cuts and the chemical fertilizer ban. Wait until the country was able to pull itself out instead of doing it quickly. So pretty much, don’t do something you can’t afford to do. 

Part 135- Money

 We all know what currency/money is and can easily recognize it. But what about people who can’t? What do they have to do? 

Many countries have their currency in different sizes depending on the denomination, but in the United States, only the coins are different. Otherwise, the paper bills are all the same size. Frankly, the idea of having different colors or sizes for US dollars didn’t exist. Plus, it was cheaper to print them all in the same color and paper. Nowadays, it is expected for them to be the same color and size because it’s stayed this way. 

Countries such as India, Australia, and Malaysia, have a distinct length for each denomination. Not only are they different sizes, but a simple, money identifier card can be used. 

Tactile marks along the tool can help identify which bill is which when lined up to the card. Money identifier tools are also very useful. The user has to insert the money into one of the devices, and then the device will provide information about the bill through speech, or a combination of beeps or vibrations. 

Some governments tried a more direct approach. In Canada, money is produced in such a way that there are braille dots to indicate the value of the bill. 

A very simple way to identify the denomination of bills can be through folding. Particular bills can be folded in particular ways to identify which is which. To be honest, I don’t find this very efficient. Yes, folding may help but it also may be a hassle to fold a bill every single time in a very specific/particular way each time you get one. 

Okay, okay. I know I’m not some cheesy reporter or spokesperson telling you stuff, but I’ve really got to explain one- no two more things. Laws! Yes, laws. Specifically, ADA and IDEA laws. ( Oh and maybe a mention of the U.S. Currency Program in between.)
ADA stands for Americans with Disabilities Act. This is a civil rights law that “…prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, transportation, and all public and public places that are open to the general public.” This law is to make sure people with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone. IDEA stands for Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Similar to the ADA, IDEA provides students with a disability with Free Appropriate Public Education. There are 4 parts to this law. Part A covers the general provisions of the law; Part B  covers assistance for the education of all children with disabilities; Part C covers infants and toddlers with disabilities; lastly, Part D consists of the national support programs administered at the FEDERAL level. 

Under the U.S. Currency program, U.S. citizens who are blind or visually impaired can obtain a currency reader device at no cost. The story behind this is quite interesting. You see, the BEP ( Bureau of Engraving and Printing) was directed to file a status report every six months on their project to provide meaningful access to the United States currency for blind and other visually impaired people. In May 2010 the Department of Treasury and the BEP issued a notice in the Federal Register to inform the public of the features BEP was proposing to the Secretary of Treasury. This included raised tactile features, large, high numerals, and a supplementary currency reader program. 

In April 2011 BEP developed an app called EyeNote to assist blind and visually impaired people in identifying U.S. currency. 2 years later, in June, BEP submitted its plan for Meaningful Access to U.S. Currency for Blind and Visually Impaired Individuals to the Treasury and the Senate Committee Appropriations. However, in September 2014, the GAO released a report saying that BEP fell behind schedule in its plans to produce U.S. currency with raised tactile markings. BEP estimated that currency with tactile features could be delayed until 2020. Until then, the GAO encouraged the government to focus on distributing currency readers while the plan for tactile features was developed. 
Maybe we will have a new type of U.S. Currency. Or I wonder if it will be a special order once only disabled people have this type of currency. Hmmmmmmm. I wonder… Or would that be harder? I personally think that tactile marks or even a bill reader are the best options for finding the denomination of bills. Only 1 out of 10 students learn braille so tactile marks may not be very common or effective unless we do something to increase the learning of braille. ( But we can’t force people.) Maybe just get them to memorize the tactile marks. They wouldn’t necessarily have to learn braille but instead just the needed dots/marks that are associated with the currency. Even if people don’t learn braille, we can always have bill readers which are already effective and useful today. Either way, they both help disabled people with bill denominations.
Even though the U.S. has come up with a solution- as I mentioned above- I think that they should consider or even try printing currency of different sizes. Even though we’ve been used to printing them all the same size would it be more effective to just change the size or would it be costly and a problem? It really doesn’t matter, to be honest. ADA was made to prevent discrimination against visually impaired people yet it can’t help with money? What if they’re out in public and don’t know how is around them? That person would know how much money they have, right? So now, when you think about it, the United States hasn’t really come up with anything for this problem. ( And it took me nearly 7- 8 paragraphs to get it through.)

Life of 12 year old- Coronavirus Lockdown- Part 24

April 22, 2020:

Today’s post is about… SELF SUFFICIENT ECONOMY V.S. GLOBAL ECONOMY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What is Self sufficient economy?

Self Sufficient economy is the ability for families and individuals to be sufficient in income to meet their basic needs consistently. When we put this with a country, that means a country is independent and does not import goods and services because they produce their own goods.

What is Global Economy?

Global economy is the system of trade and industry across the world. Or, Free trade = Global economy.

This is literally all I know. Since yesterday to today, I have been reading 4-5 different articles, and none of them make any sense in any way or help me understand further about this topic. I’ve got one that says, ” Why the US will survive the end of globalization.” This doesn’t relate, it only talks about caution signs and the US is the world’s largest economy. Here’s another, ” Self-Reliant Economy: Myth vs. Reality.” Sure this sounds helpful, but when I read this, it says Nepal, Nepal, Nepal, NEPAL, Nepal, NEPAL!!!  It compares things in  Nepal, the economics of Nepal, and mentions India a few times. What do I learn from that, if it only gives one example????? Is there any website that actually answers the question of a kid who wants to pursue her dreams of being a lawyer and has to understand economy first, who is raging in her head while stuck at home ( her own mind), who is writing a blog every day because she loves her parents so much she will listen to them and do whatever they say even if it means working for at least 5 hours and 10 minutes upstairs where the AC isn’t on making everything feel hot and unbearably sweaty, who is tired and just wants the Coronavirus to stop so she can finally have socializing again that is not online or includes the same TWO people she sees every day for the last 7 weeks?????????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ok, that got out of hand. ( sorry) It feels good writing your feelings out. Here is one more, learning about Self-Sufficient Economy and Global Economy is not that interesting to me. I like Politics and law, but if I need to know economics then I will, and hopefully find it interesting sometime sooner or later.

Since I’ve not learned anything, I have to write this- dad said to and it is very true. I have read 5 articles on this topic and have not learned anything. I am ashamed of myself. There said it- wrote it- done. Can I go outside now?? NO.

Links for sites:

Why the Us will survive globalization

The benefits of Free trade: Addressing Key Myths

Self Reliant Economy

Today I read about Lakshman.

Life of 12 year old- Coronavirus Lockdown- Part 23

April 21, 2020:

Ok, so today’s post was supposed to be about the self-sufficient economy and Global economy, but it’s the end of the day, I’m tired, and id I wrote more than what I’ve researched, then I would be having a blank mind about what  I am even writing about. Below is what the post was supposed to look like- sort of.

 Today’s post is about… SELF SUFFICIENT ECONOMY V.S. GLOBAL ECONOMY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What is Self sufficient economy?

Self Sufficient economy is the ability for families and individuals to be sufficient in income to meet their basic needs consistently. When we put this with a country, that means a country is independent and does not import goods and services because they produce their own goods.

What is Global Economy?

Global economy is the system of trade and industry across the world. Or, Free trade = Global economy.

My dad sent me 2 links about this, and just by reading their titles, to be honest, I have not a single clue about what they’re talking about. So, instead, I’m going to go back to what today we like. Yesterday, I finished all my HW, all according to my schedules-alarms. I finished ELA, PE, and started Orchestra today. There are 2020 Auditions for Orchestra’s and I’m doing Etude B. The only problem is that I have no idea how to do the note rhythm in measure 4. I contacted my friend, and she helped me out, yet I have a bit of confusion, so I’m just going to do my best tomorrow, and try it out. All Pass scores for this week, and speaking of weeks, I have just completed week 7 at home after April 19- Sunday- ended. Yesterday, I sort of got into an argument with my parents and I got myself into a mess where my dad switched doff my wifi and data. To be honest, yesterday was a bit fun and it wasn’t a big deal when I had no access to TV on my phone or iPad. Though I made a very clear and fair point about why I should watch West Wing- yesterday- and he let me watch for an hour. YES! I woke up this morning and learned that he turned it back on. My mom had told him he yelled ta me yesterday morning- I don’t remember- and last night as I was reading The Alchemyst, he apologized. And because he was feeling guilty, he switched it back on. I could have been okay for at least 2 days. I had some fun yesterday in finally using my AG dolls’ boxes, and turning them into the cutest closets ever! I and my dad had made little hangers for the clothes my uncle had got for them when he visited me 3 years ago. I finally put them to use and created perfect storage for their outfits, and better use for them instead of shoving them into a messy corner where they would hopefully go unnoticed. I have finished all my HW, listened to my dad talks about how he wants me to skip Algebra I so I do High school math next year- or skip 7th grade ELA- and showed me the tests and proved to me that I can do it. > Sigh< WHY?? Anyway, I hope everyone is safe, well, healthy, and is doing something engaging and fun over the break. BYE!

For the second time, the IRS has received estimated damage of acriminal syndicate’s massive theft of American taxpayer data

In May 2015, the government agency said criminal used a tool on the IRS website to steal the tax forms of 104,000 people. Then in August, it sevised that number up to 330,000. On Friday the tax-collecting agency revealed the number is now closer to 720,000. The latest number is the result of a nine month investigationby the U.S. Treasury Inspector General for tax Administration. Investigators found that 390,000 additional 295,000 taxprayer transcripts than previously thought,but ” access was not successful “, the IRS said. This news was very intrestring but I didn’t understand some of the words.