Today on a blog post of Beppe Grillo‘s official blog the creation of an e-Lira is hypothesized.
The post is not signed directly by Beppe Grillo, but by “G51LL0”, and refers to a hypothetical digital currency, called e-Lira, and to the Universal Income, of which Beppe Grillo himself wrote in March.
The post is set in a hypothetical future, in 2150, and narrates the disappearance of the physical Euro.
The author cites 2020 as a year in which e-Lira did not yet exist, while many countries started talking about digital coins, cryptocurrencies, blockchain and artificial intelligence.
Moreover G51LL0 refers to Beppe Grillo as his great-grandfather, so it is legitimate to imagine that it is nothing else than a pseudonym used by Grillo himself to talk about the future.
About digital coins, the post mentions Libra, the Chinese digital currency, the Swedish e-Krona and the experimentation of the French central bank, committing however the mistake to consider this last one as an experimentation of a digital currency by the French central bank, and not of the ECB as it is instead.
Moreover it refers to a digital currency “for internal use”, perhaps without knowing that the use of digital currencies is by definition global, not territorially limitable.
The e-Lira is defined as “a virtual circuit for real purchases, guaranteed by the blockchain technology”, able to grant non-refundable credits.
In this case however it would not deal with blockchain, because not decentralized, but probably of a permissioned distributed register, able to guarantee only the correctness of the transactions, and not the value of the currency. Therefore it would not be able to grant non-repayable credits, but only to allow the disbursement of credit, exactly as for the traditional fiat currencies, among which the same Euro.
Moreover it is not well understood why a digital currency should be a “circuit”, and not instead a financial asset.
G51LL0 also hypothesizes that a part of the resources that the government wants to give as a non-repayable grant can be put as a guarantee of these digital credits, and that this would increase the speed of consumption by 10 times.
Can Beppe Grillo’s e-Lira exist?
But it does not explain how this could be possible. As far as today it is known, the new natively digital currencies are not able to influence the consumptions in this way.
G51LL0 then hypothesizes that such a system could allow the State an anonymous monitoring in real time that would eliminate the underworld and the submerged, but also in this case it does not explain how. The digital coins to today have not demonstrated to be able to eliminate the underworld, the tax evasion and the black market.
It explains that all this would be thanks to the not cumulability and the constraint to use the credits only for internal consumptions, without however explaining what it means for “cumulability”, and without saying how it could be done to prevent the circulation of this currency also abroad.
Finally, it should be added that to date there is no way Italy can issue its own currency, since doing so would violate the treaties signed at the time of joining the Euro. In other words, in order to do so, it would have to leave the Eurozone.
Just think of the similar initiative of Estonia that failed two years ago.