Life Imitates my Art, etc.

Several Russian banks have joined the China International Payments System (CIPS), to ease operations between the two countries, according to a senior official at the Central Bank of Russia (CBR).

“As for the cooperation on payment systems, a range of banks are already connected to CIPS, allowing to facilitate payments routing procedure,” Vladimir Shapovalov, who heads a division dealing with foreign regulators at the CBR’s international cooperation department, said earlier this week during the international Russian-Chinese forum.

Wow.  No one saw that coming.

“Idiot.” Emma was learning quickly that her new acquaintance, Maya, lacked manners. “Your President removed via extra-Constitutional means just as Russia, China, India roll out a new currency?” ~ Cursed Hearts, Ch.13

and

“Can you believe it, Atazaki?” he asked, flourishing his newspaper. “The US economy imploding like this? I’m an engineer, not at economist, but how in the world…”

“Call it belief; call it faith. Lose it, and your world ends,” his friend replied, looking at a domestic part of his own newspaper.

“What’s that?” What Hakane knew of politics could fit into a sake cup.

“Since the war,” for a Japanese, that meant only one thing, “the world economy had the US dollar as its reserve currency, backed, not by gold or silver, but by the faith – mind you – that the US will always be there!”

Atazaki glanced at the clock over the inner door and decided one more cigarette was in order.

“So now we find,” he said, pointing at Hakane’s paper with his lighter, “that as the American President is being removed via extra-Constitutional means, the Russians, Chinese, and Indians are rolling out a new currency… what’s it called?”

“The ria,” Hakane managed.

“Whatever. Backed by the gold they’ve been buying up for a generation, and indexed to oil. At that point, US dollars became valueless.”

Hakane was still confused. But why…

“Why is there rioting in the US? And getting worse so fast?” Atazaki blew a blue-grey cloud toward the ceiling’s scrubbers.

“It’s a replay of what almost happened back in oh-eight: credit dries up, the velocity of money drops to zero.”

Atazaki realized his friend didn’t get a single word. He tried again.

“Credit cards stop working; all the zeros and ones in banks are gone, and, for the Americans,” he took another drag, “their food- welfare cards, whatever they’re called, stopped working.”

He exhaled again and sat back.

“All cities in the US are starving right now. And there is nothing… nothing at all, to stop it.”

Atazaki took another drag while looking out the window at bustling Osaka.

“They’re done for.” Quieter. “God help us; we’re all alone.” ~ Friend & Ally, Prologue

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