A Society Based on the Social Credit System is Closer Than You Think

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by Robert Wheeler

The social credit system took yet another step forward—this time, from Down Under. Under the guise of a welfare crackdown, Australia moved 25,000 people onto a cashless card system that restricts non-essential purchases. 

Aussie welfare recipients only access to funds is via a cashless debit card

Australia’s government forced thousands of welfare recipients on to Centrelink, a cashless debit card. Under a massive expansion of the plan and new Federal Budget, immigrants have no access to most kinds of welfare for four years after attaining residency. However, the most crucial aspect of Centrelink is Aussies cannot use the cards for gambling, alcohol, or cigarettes. Only necessities like groceries and food can be purchased with the cards. 

East Kimberley and Goldfields in Western Australia, Ceduna in South Australia, and the Bundaberg-Hervey Bay region of Queensland trialed the cards beginning in 2016. Under this scheme, 80 percent of welfare recipients’ Centrelink payment will go directly to the card rather than a bank account. That is supposed to keep recipients from wasting the welfare on unnecessary items.

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg unveiled the plan to make the scheme permanent in the trial locations. The plan also includes extending it to 25,000 people in the Northern Territory and Cape York.

The Australian government’s recent budget includes a $30 million package to “upskill” people at the trial sites and offer a jobs fund to boost employment opportunities. The plan includes funding for drug and alcohol rehabilitation services in the cashless debit card locations as well. 

Don’t be so quick to judge. This plan is not what it seems

Many people will rejoice, happy that the “welfare queens” can no longer lie about drinking beer and smoking while others toil away at work to pay for those luxuries. However, the truth is that this scheme is much more insidious than it may at first appear.

No one wants to pay higher taxes so that those who do not want to work can squander welfare benefits. But knee-jerk reactions that lend support to schemes like this will ultimately lead to a social credit system, UBI, and financial allotmentt entirely controlled by the government. Implementation of these schemes is likely not only in Australia but across the world.

What is a social credit system?

For those unaware of what a “social credit system” is, Business Insider’s article summarizes it well. In the article “China has started ranking citizens with a creepy ‘social credit’ system — here’s what you can do wrong, and the embarrassing, demeaning ways they can punish you,” Alexandra Ma writes: 

The Chinese state is setting up a vast ranking system that will monitor the behavior of its enormous population and rank them all based on their “social credit.”

The “social credit system,” first announced in 2014, aims to reinforce the idea that “keeping trust is glorious and breaking trust is disgraceful,” according to a government document.

The program is due to be fully operational nationwide by 2020 but is being piloted for millions of people across the country already. The scheme will be mandatory.

At the moment, the system is piecemeal — some are run by city councils, others are scored by private tech platforms which hold personal data.

Like private credit scores, a person’s social score can move up and down depending on their behavior. The exact methodology is a secret — but examples of infractions include bad driving, smoking in non-smoking zones, buying too many video games, and posting fake news online.

That system is coming to the United States and the rest of the world soon

Brandon Turbeville mentions the coming merger of the social credit and UBI systems here:

While most Americans have scarcely noticed their descent into a police state, they are quick to dismiss the idea that such a system could be implemented in the land they still perceive to be free. However, all the moving parts are in place in the United States. They only need to come together to form the Social Credit System here. 

And they ARE coming together.

Social media is a critical method of judging “social scores.” Mainly because of the willful posting of social media users on virtually every aspect of their lives. Users give away the most personal and intimate details of their lives and do so without charge.

This data is extremely useful to governments who monitor and store the freely acquired information. Whether it is political opinions, pictures of yourself and your food, or private conversations, that data is sent directly to the corporation. Respective governments then have access to that data via various means and put that data to good use.

In this article, Daisy offers insight into the data collection in the United States.

People seem blind to what is coming

The UBI, of course, is an old idea and one so old that philosopher/activist Bertrand Russell even discussed it. The UBI, cashless society, and social credit system will soon combine to create the largest, most effective police state ever known to man. A society where any criticism or resistance of the government will result in an immediate shut down of credits and the trespasser being frozen entirely out of society.

It may feel good now, but soon it won’t. When it no longer does, well, you were warned. 

What are your thoughts on a system like this?

Do you think we’ll see a social credit system in the USA? How do you plan to function under such a system? Let’s talk about it in the comments below.

About Robert

Robert Wheeler has been quietly researching world events for two decades. After witnessing the global network of NGOs and several ‘Revolutions’ they engineered in a number of different countries, Wheeler began analyzing current events through these lenses.

Robert Wheeler

Robert Wheeler

Robert Wheeler has been quietly researching world events for two decades. After witnessing the global network of NGOs and several 'Revolutions' they engineered in a number of different countries, Wheeler began analyzing current events through these lenses.

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32 Responses

  1. Don’t be so quick to denigrate Australasia’s attempts to do what America did over 40 years ago. Originally our Food Stamps could only be used for goods that you eat. We could not purchase liqueur cigarettes, beer, nothing but food stuffs, so stop with all the hysteria. We did not descend in chaos as implied in this article, and it did not lead to the destruction of America, but it did help those of us who were caught in the middle of an economic downturn in the building trades in the early eighties.

    I am all for only allowing those ETB cards to purchase food. The attempt was and is only enough to keep you alive. The state does not owe you a living, nor a living wage. If you want to die of lung cancer or alcoholism then be our guest, just don’t use OUR money to do it.

    1. If you recall, some people were selling their food stamps at a discount in order to buy whatever they wanted.
      I doubt that something similar won’t occur down under. (I’ll buy what you want and you give me cash) I don’t doubt it happens here with the EBT cards every day.

      1. Where I live in the U.S., you can buy EBT cards at 50 cents on the dollar from derelicts who’d rather shoot up than feed their kids.

  2. Also we already have had a sampling of our own Social Credit System and it is being run by the Credit Reporting System with the help of the banks. Mine happens to be 835 but if you fall below 600 the banks begin to have issues with your ability to pay them back. This has become part of our system in America because everyone lives on CREDIT. It is a very short step to a system that controls every aspect of our lives.
    Only when you stop using credit will you truly be free, because when you do use it you are agreeing to your own enslavement.

    1. Then you’ll really like it when you are denied credit for crossing the street against the light.

    2. The object is not to borrow money if possible, but save up and pay cash. No loan means no interest to pay. I don’t have a credit card or a debit card. My husband has a debit card, but he only has a lowes credit card. Only because you get 5% off when you use and if you pay it at the end of the month full, then there is no interest to pay.

    3. You may be free but your credit rating goes to shit. It’s a scam but a game to play if you want to get things like a decent insurance rate or maybe even a job. I’m retired and don’t want payments anymore longer but I might need something and need to be able to borrow.

      1. Bible also says there is to be no usury… (interest on borrowed money). That was dispensed with a long time ago by the Quadrillionaire Rothschilds.

  3. Here is where a lot of Prepping and Conspiracy stuff falls apart. It is location dependent.
    You might see that in Australia, we might see some form of it in the US, especially in “blue” states.
    China is pushing this as part of their plan to conquer the World. But that also will fail at some point.

    There are some things that some groups just will not accept. We saw this during the early days of Covid 19. not all states did lockdowns, not all for the same amount of time and not all areas required masks.
    It is neatly impossible to force all the people in the world to agree on anything or to comply with anything.
    So this to will fail.

    1. Problem is, most world leaders admire the Chinese social credit system, esp. the facial recognition part of it. Here in Australia, we are tracked all the time now with the digital QR codes requiring to be accessed on entry and often on exit from a venue. No smart phone, no QR code, no entry. Sorry. People here have always objected to a national social security number fearing loss of privacy; now, within a year, privacy gone with constant surveillance outside the home. The tech addicted don’t seem to care.

      1. fair work commission Section 94H of the privacy Act 1988.
        94H Requiring the use of COVIDSafe.
        look up the fwc dot gov dot au
        basically its all against the law with 5 year jail terms for trying to force you to use it.
        l carry a copy everywhere l go, but in adelaide they don’t seem to be as *nal as other states.
        likewise under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 they cannot force you to wear a mask and you don’t even need to provide proof that you are medical exempt.
        thanks to crowhouse dot com for the links

    2. That would only be true if nations/states/leaders/groups were independent and free to make up their own choices. Personally, I think most of the ‘disagreement’ is just a show. It may fail but because we stood up to them not because they couldn’t agree on things.

  4. I think you’re making quite the leap of logic here. Moving benefit recipients onto a cashless system that allows only the purchase of the things the system is meant to purchase is a very long way away from the Chinese social credit system. Having seen with my own eyes how our system can be abused, I’m all for the Aussies doing this. Good for them! Many years ago I was a cashier in a salvage goods grocery store. In those days, food stamps came in books of $65 and one ripped out the amount needed to pay the grocery bill. I can’t even count the number of times someone would come through my line, buy a 20 cent candy with a $1 food stamp bill, then come through with beer and/or smokes and pay for that with the change I’d given them for the candy. Neither candy nor the other stuff should be paid for with food stamps! And how exactly does a cashless society lead to a social credit system? It does lead to completely traceable transactions and even more taxation, but not to a social credit system. Cashless societies destroy the cash job economy, but they don’t lead to a social credit system. I can see an increase in untraceable barter transactions though. And while it’s true that people should be extremely careful of the data they’re sharing on social media, that’s an entirely different subject from cashless welfare payments leading us down the road to Perdition. Yikes!

  5. Universal basic income (UBI) will be given to every citizen with the stipulation it must be spent – all of it – within 30 days or some other specified amount of time. This is to prevent anyone from ‘saving’ money. Yes, there will be no savings accounts. The ‘money’ on your UBI debit card will only be good for a specified amount of time – after that it disappears. And, of course, no paper money means no black market, no spending your money on things the government deems you don’t need. Even with your UBI debit card you will only be able to buy government specified items in rationed quantities. You’ll own nothing and you’ll be happy…

    1. My daughter has autism and gets SSI. She gets $780 automatically deposited in her bank a count every month. She can’t ever have over $2,000 in her bank account or her benefits will be cut. Obviously it all has to be spent in ways that benefit her: first food and shelter and then extras which benefit her. I’d like her to get a job if possible. I’m not sure what the rules are for income she may earn. She’d like to go to DisneyWorld. There’s a limit to how much she can earn and keep SSI benefits. The concept is sound, I think. I also used to cashier at a co-op, and it didn’t allow food stamps to be used to buy liquor, but people would do the same thing the other commenter mentioned. Buy one apple with a food stamp, then liquor with the change. Contemptible.

      1. I am in a similar position, only with Medicaid and Medicare. If I earn more than 2300 a month, the state will cut my health care off.

        1. My daughter and I went without insurance for years because I made just a little too much for any of the “supplements” but not nearly enough to pay $1800 a month for something with a $10K deductible. Rock, meet hard place.

  6. In my experience as a cashier, people with ebt buy food with their ebt and then use their own money for the alcohol, tobacco, and lotto.

  7. As an Aussie , they keep doing trials like this for a long time. Usually targeting areas where welfare abuse is at the highest. I’m not sure I could see it being rolled out country wide. There has always been active opposition to it. I believe there could be some benifits but also many concerns. Lots of community members could miss out on op shopping, roadside fresh farmer produce or buying chickens or local gardening supplies which in many towns all still operate on cash only. In my town cash is king. But in this crazy world anything is possible.

    1. The banks are laughing with glee as they thought cashless would take about 5 years; how with the excuse of covid, it is happening sooner rather than later. Soon there will be a transaction fee for every small purchase by cashless for both parties not just the retailer. Many shops in local shopping centre have gone cashless, also some McDonald’s outlets. Anna Bligh now mouth piece for the bankers, says, online banking and cashless is the way to go; customers are asking for it.

  8. I have had a few useful rules for many years now:

    A) Never post anything under my real name

    B) never post any details about my life that could lead back to my home. I call
    this the “Tony Stark rule” after the Iron Man movie where that daft fictional billionaire gave out his home address on live TV and taunted a known terrorist to come and try and get him.

    C) Never use anything but cash to buy booze, bullets or bullion

    D) Never put bumper stickers of any kind on my car. Ditto for yard signs

    E) FFS, never buy anything that has the Punisher symbol

    F) I work to live, not to talk about my feelings. My co workers have never had the slightest idea what I believe or how I vote

    G) Never ever EVER even think the word “prepper”. I’m just that hippy dippy looking guy who likes to grow veggies and collect rainwater

    Just sayin’

  9. I am from that part of the world and know activists who are greatly upset by it. I will not comment on Chinese style social credit systems but will say that the cashless welfare card may only be used at outlets which register with the government first, according to whatever criteria the government decides.

    What that means is that government officials have control over where people go shopping and also which businesses may get rich selling their goods to card holders, which in a way means that any business person that the government does not like may be punished or destroyed also.

  10. getting ahead of the curve is important,
    build a great credit score and forge ahead in life,
    it will be easy to get left behind,

  11. The Australian govt. gave millions of dollars of JobKeeper funds to corporations, billionaires, such as Qantas, Harvey Norman, Crown Casino, Lend Lease, etc. so they would keep employees on their payroll during lockdown, etc. Then, Qantas’ Alan Joyce sacked the pilots (some got jobs as bus drivers) and others and gave the govt. millions in bonuses to his executives! No need to pay back the tax-payer funded welfare to corporations. Yet, the Australian govt. will do what it can to get people off the unemployment benefit scheme, or reduce the amount paid to aged pensioners. Here’s one way around the cashless welfare card: Drive by taxi to a liquor outlet, get the taxi to pay, then pay the taxi driver later. I heard this on the radio recently.

  12. There is no “government”. There are “government” actors. Each one is and individual. There is nothing to stop the non-“government” (productive) actors from having a social credit system for “government” actors. There won’t be a day that goes by that “government” actors will not be labeled as thieves.

    1. “There is no “government’.”

      sure there is. it’s just that some people are unable to think in any terms other than personal.

  13. “That system is coming to the United States”

    (shrug) been saying this for years. no-one ever answered, they just downvoted. and now it’s on the horizon.

    “keeping trust is glorious and breaking trust is disgraceful”

    heh. by “trust” they mean “obedience”. “we trusted you to do what we say, but you maliciously violated our trust, so you’ve chosen to make us punish you until you obey.” (don’t laugh, this is actually a valid train of thought in china)

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