Magazine article The Spectator

High Life: Taki

Magazine article The Spectator

High Life: Taki

Article excerpt

Gstaad

I never made it to Zurich but met up with Steve Bannon through the miracle of technology, thanks to my hosts at the Swiss weekly Die Weltwoche, who gave him my telephone number. He rang at a civilised time and we had a very cosy chat for an hour or so. I don't know how it was done, and don't ask me for details, but I could see him and apparently he could see me too. The first things I said were that I was 100 per cent heterosexual and what a pity it was that I had to be initiated into this technology while talking to a man -- a man I much admire but a man none the less. 'That makes two of us,' answered the great one, 'and we used to go out with the same girl....' Like a gent, he never mentioned her name, and I didn't ask.

The reason all this was done electronically was that I had turned into a hydrocephalus. My head ballooned to twice its normal size after I collided with a hard place while showing off skiing without a helmet. Head injuries at my age are a bore, though it's the brain cell loss that concerns me, and to hell with the looks. But back to Steve Bannon and what he had to say.

Basically, the populist movement differs in each country, as it should. According to Steve, central banks are in the business of debasing currencies as the business and political class are debasing citizenship, making us slaves. He compared the new serfdom to the situation pre-French Revolution, with Google, Amazon and Facebook living it up in Versailles and urging us to eat cake. The Time's Up movement he likened to the French Revolution. What will save us from the ogres, according to Steve, is the new currency. This I found very interesting.

I understand currencies as well as I comprehend modern technology, i.e., not at all. But I am still capable of not thinking of women long enough to concentrate, and here is what I learned: entrepreneurs are now selling their own virtual currencies to raise money for software that they say they are building. In return for real money, investors receive digital tokens, similar to bitcoin. These coin offerings rose out of nowhere last year to become a popular way for start-ups to raise tens of millions of dollars. That leaves bankers out of the loop, and entrepreneurs free to practise free enterprise. Steve Bannon is all for it, and I am also behind it, however little I understand, which is very, very little. But it makes sense -- the freeing of the serfs, that is -- so I'm all for it. Apparently, there are already eight virtual currencies worth more than [euro]6.6 billion, and all the bitcoins in the world are worth around $185 billion. Caramba, as they say in Mexico. …

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