07 May 2013

An Update on My Work With the “Infinite Banking Concept”

Infinite Banking Concept 13 Comments

I am running around because I’m about to go on a trip, but I wanted to drop a quick note to explain a major project I’ve been working on over the past year. I am a co-creator of The IBC Practitioner Program, a training program for financial professionals in Austrian economics and the “Infinite Banking Concept” (IBC). Since the release of my book co-authored with Carlos Lara, I’ve spent a lot of time reading insurance textbooks, interviewing actuaries and agents, and visiting insurance company home offices to really make sure I understand the theoretical foundations of what Nelson Nash recommends in his underground classic, Becoming Your Own Banker.

I will be posting blogs and YouTube videos on these issues a lot more in the future, but for now I want to at least make people aware of it.

Another major development, is that Jason Rink (who made the Nullification documentary with Tom Woods) has now made a documentary on IBC as a household response to fractional reserve banking. In other words, Rink effectively took Carlos and my book and put the content in film format, but he also interviews people from the insurance industry to make it more concrete and not as theoretical as our book was.

Below are two samples from the DVD:

13 Responses to “An Update on My Work With the “Infinite Banking Concept””

  1. Tel says:

    It is a fascinating concept and it has been floating around for a while. This was my first glimpse at it —


    He links the concept back to “Freigeld” by Silvio Gesell (early 20th Century).

    There are a lot of little details in this sort of plan, any one of which might cause it to fall apart. A lot of the early thinkers were “big picture” guys who were right in principle but never got the mechanics figured out.

    See also a company called “Lending Club” offering an alternative way to handle mortgages, etc.

    • Adrian Gabriel says:

      Freigeld was simply a coercive currency, something that Keynesians love because they “think” they can control the money supply. Robbery is robbery, especially when there is a tax on the money. Here is an interesting article describing this money:


      • Barnaby Is Right says:

        Adrian, I’d politely suggest reading the linked article in full before jumping to erroneous assumptions. The basis for the idea is to maximally de-centralise the power of currency issuance, (ie, no-one controls it, and every voluntary participant plays by the same pre-programmed and encrypted “rules”).

      • Tel says:

        Very interesting article, but I come away with a different conclusion that you do.

        Frankly I can’t see anything the Mayor did that was coercive in relation to the “Stamp Scrip” currency. Yes, I can accept that taxation pumps up the demand for the fiat currency, and yes I accept that taxation is coercive (obviously).

        Let’s look at it from a currency point of view though… the back taxes were owed from before the “Stamp Scrip” had even been tried. Regardless of which mayor is on power, or which currency is in operation, he is still going to impose taxes. Every regime imposes taxes one way or another.

        Thus, you can’t really link the imposition of tax to the availability of Scrip. You also can’t say that people were forced to accept the Scrip. It was paid to government workers, who presumably had the option of not working if they didn’t see the pay as worthwhile. The Mayor did not have sufficient power to impose financial repression anyhow.

        • Tel says:

          Let’s look at this another way. Suppose a bunch of people owed back taxes, and suppose the Mayor had said, “OK, you guys can pay off your back taxes in work hours rather than currency if you want to work on one of my projects.”

          Would this have been coercive? I mean, more coercive than just the fact that taxes were owed in the first place?

  2. Jared Lynch says:

    How long is the entire video?

    • Bob Murphy says:

      I’m not sure Jared, and I’m in a hotel room right now. I want to say it’s like 55 minutes?

  3. The Breadbasket says:

    Gary North seems to have a very different view on IBC:


  4. TimK says:

    Bob, have you also started selling snake oil?

    Geez, and I thought you at least half-way serious.

    • Tel says:

      Why is it snake oil?

      If I do some work for someone, and they write an IOU note in return then new money is created. Eventually they will either come good on their promise, or they will break their promise… just like how any fiat system works.

      This is only a question of whose IOU notes are permitted to circulate. Nothing more than that.

      • TimK says:

        Well, I admit I only watched the video about two sisters saving $300 every month.

        But all this shows is the effects of iron disciplined saving (for 45 years, no less) and compound interest, with a new car thrown in every 4 years to distract your attention from how simple the idea is.

        I assume they end up recommending some whole life insurance company that will accomplish this “magic” for them – shhh! don’t tell anyone; it’s just for insiders. They, of course, don’t mention the heavy fees the insurance company deducts.

        That’s the snake oil.

        Any time I see ads where they explain how you can do easily something, and the explanation is so complicated that you can’t understand, then I know it’s a scam.

  5. Tel says:

    This link might be interesting, and at least vaguely related:


    So Thomas Williams, the owner of an Anglesey copper mine, and Matthew Boulton, keen to put steam engines to work, offered to make pennies for the government. Rebuffed, Williams made coins anyway. Called druids, they were harder to fake or clip (because they had raised rims) and cheaper to strike than state coins. Being convertible into guineas and pounds at a fixed price of one penny, they were soon accepted all over Birmingham and even in London.

    By 1797 there were 600 tons of such tokens in circulation and the counterfeiters were put out of business. The coiners started making silver tokens too but a jealous Royal Mint lobbied Parliament to outlaw the competition. It succeeded in 1818, three years before it could produce new copper coins to match the high standards of the private ones, so the coin famine resumed.

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