You should be terrified by programmable money, says Layah Heilpern

By: Henry Felix

You should be terrified by programmable money, says Layah Heilpern

August 19, 2022 7:02 AM

The remarks come amid Layah Heilpern's concern that CBDCs will lead to governmental censorship that will hinder locals from conducting business as they see fit.


According to social media influencer and TV host Layah Heilpern, programmable money controlled by the government "should worry you." She sees central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) as a mechanism for banks and governments to regain control over their citizens.


Heilpern, who also published Undressing Bitcoin: A Revealing Guide To The World's Most Revolutionary Asset in September 2021, stated that the widespread adoption of a central bank digital currency (CBDC) from nation states is on the way and that it could result in the financial censorship of citizens in the future in an interview with British news outlet GB News on August 19.


As programmable cryptocurrencies that operate on blockchains, Heilpern claimed that CBDCs may theoretically be "programmed against you" at the wishes of the centralized authority controlling them.


"That money may essentially be programmed to be used against you if for whatever reason you say the incorrect thing, because you know we're seeing censorship increasing," the speaker said.

Despite the fact that many people might find this idea "very odd," Heilpern continued, it is extremely realistic given the limitations that governments imposed on those who were not immunized:


"All [the government] actually needs to do with a CBDC is program that money so you can't spend it on specific items."

Heilpern added that it is "a falsehood" that CBDCs will be promoted as "better for the environment" and a "solution to rising inflation rates."


Heilpern didn't hold back when she responded to the interview via a Twitter post, saying that the "Digital currencies issued by central banks will be promoted as being better for the environment and the antidote to inflation. It is false. You should be terrified of programmable money since it provides the energy for your life."



However, with the recent Tornado Cash scandal, which saw the U.S. Treasury penalize ETH and USDC addresses linked to the Ethereum-based anonymity tool, similar worries about financial censorship have recently become particularly widespread with crypto in general.


110 nations are "in some level" of CBDC development, with the Bahamas' Sand Dollar CBDC being the first of its kind to be introduced in October 2020, according to a report from October 2021.


However, China's "Yuan" (e-CNY), issued by the People's Bank of China, is possibly the most contentious CBDC. Its pilot version was introduced in April 2020, and some have speculated that the crypto prohibition was implemented to create room for the digital Yuan.


The Bank of Russia has also started testing CBDC and plans to establish one prior to the country's 2024 presidential election.


IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva asserts that, despite widespread criticism, CBDCs may provide developing countries with greater macroeconomic stability compared to decentralized currencies because they would have the "backing of the state" and, of course, comply with regulatory requirements.