Libra cryptocurrency catches major congressional snag

When someone tells you that cryptocurrency is about to go mainstream, it just feels a little off, doesn’t it?

That’s like hoping your moonshine guy goes legit, despite that taxes, regulation, and overall dumbing down of the finished product.

But still, Facebook finds themselves barreling down the road toward world domination.  They are already the number one data harvester on the planet, with a valuation in the billions of dollars backed up by their massive troves of user data alone.  Now, as they plan to launch Libra, their cryptocurrency, they really do seem to be eying the title of masters of the universe.

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Not so fast, says Congress.

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Facebook’s ambitious plan to create a financial eco-system based on a digital currency faces questions from lawmakers, as it’s shadowed by negative comments from President Donald Trump, his treasury secretary and the head of the Federal Reserve.

Congress begins two days of hearings Tuesday on the currency planned by Facebook, to be called Libra, starting with the Senate Banking Committee. Meanwhile, a House Judiciary subcommittee will extend its bipartisan investigation of the market power of Facebook, Google, Amazon and Apple.

Trump tweeted last week that the new currency, Libra, “will have little standing or dependability.” Both Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Fed Chair Jerome Powell have expressed serious concerns recently that Libra could be used for illicit activity.

The main concern, as it has been with the bevy currently available cryptocurrencies, is that these clandestine cash-adjacent transactions could be used to finance drug dealers, gun runners, and terrorists.

Facebook, who is not exactly known for their corporate maturity or ethics, could be opening a Pandora’s box by jumping feet first into a game already dominated by ne’er-do-wells…something that Congress and the Treasure Department are going to hope to prevent.

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