We have been told repeatedly by Washington policymakers that the U.S. economy is strong and growing, yet most Americans are experiencing economic hardship and uncertainty regarding the U.S. economy. Some Americans are working multiple jobs just to make ends meet and still live paycheck to paycheck. So, what are Americans to do of what appears to be a failing economy? Are we to wait on policymakers to correct these economic influxes and anomalies, which cause and sustain debt, and which may take years to correct? Americans simply want economic security and freedom but just can’t seem to obtain it, no matter how hard they try.
Well, the Barter Unit may provide a solution towards economic security and freedom for all. BarterUnit LLC, an American startup, has announced it has launched its own community currency- called the Barter Unit. The new economic experiment is expected to combat a broken and disproportionate economy and empower the economically marginalized by creating and distributing an alternative digital currency. The new startup will give 100 Barter Units to each of its first 100,000 registered users.
So, what exactly is this BarterUnit establishment and who’s the man behind the curtain? Well, we managed to contact Phillip H. Perez, the Founder, and CEO of BarterUnit LLC. Perez agreed to conduct a short interview via FaceTime, enabling us to get a better understanding of the new startup. Below are some questions and responses to the interview.
Phillip, what is the Barter Unit and what is the primary purpose of the Barter Unit?
“The Barter Unit is an alternative digital currency created to help individuals and families meet their daily needs and aspirations. Put simply, it’s an alternative source of capital to help people get through hard economic times. Think of it as an economic revolution, that is aimed to create and sustain economic security and freedom for all.”
Why create the Barter Unit? Why not just use the official national currency, such as the dollar?
“The Barter Unit was created simply because the current U.S. economy is broken, flawed and corrupted and doesn’t work for the working class and the poor. I can list dozens of reasons as to why its broken, flawed and failing at an enormous rate, but here’s the bottom line, the economy is rigged. And although some may disagree with such a bold statement, that’s just my opinion based on what is blatantly self-evident. However, my point is, the system is rigged and it’s time for a major economic change. It’s time for an economic reset. And until Washington policymakers can situate, correct and create an economy that works for everyone, we’re offering the Barter Unit.”
What are the benefits one obtains when using the Barter Unit?
“Well, there are a number of benefits one can obtain when using the system, but I’ll proceed by listing the incentive strengths of the Barter Unit system. First and foremost, the Barter Unit establishment is not a credit or banking institution that causes and sustains debt. Unlike the national currency, which can be leveraged to borrow more money at high-interest rates, the Barter Unit cannot be borrowed for interest rate profiteering. It’s strictly prohibited. We’re structured to be an interest-free and debt-free currency system.
Secondly, unlike government-sponsored currencies, the Barter Unit is designed to protect the people economically from high-interest rate usury and other extractive forces such as debt collectors, quick payday lenders (which are notoriously known to impose extremely high interests rates ranging from 100% to 300%), check cashers, garnishments, transfer fees, chargebacks, excessive bank overdraft fees, etc.
Thirdly, the Barter Unit is designed to stay locally. Not only would the Barter Unit stay in local neighborhoods, but it would boost the local economies towards sustainable economic development. You see, when you have the rise of big-box stores like Walmart and Target, e-commerce stores like Amazon and sharing-economy apps like Postmates, Uber, Airbnb, money is siphoned out of local communities and into the hands of corporate companies and banks. But when you have a currency that is designed to stay in local communities, it produces economic growth locally and it follows that people, in general, obtain better living standards.
Now, all this can be done simply because the Barter Unit is not legal tender, it’s not deemed a commodity, a security or property and cannot be converted back into any government-sponsored currency, including any type of cryptocurrency. It’s designed to protect the people from usury, corporate greed, political corruption, and government intervention. In other words, it protects the people from a rigged economy. Our system is specifically structured to counter inequality, debt, accumulation, and exclusion that the national currency currently imposes on us all. It’s really that straightforward and simple.
Also, there is one important thing I want to address and clarify. We’re not competing against the dollar or any government-sponsored currency for that matter. The Barter Unit operates alongside the dollar and compliments the dollar. It is designed to be an alternative currency as a means to promote and produce economic security and freedom for all members.”
Is the Barter Unit a cryptocurrency? Is it similar to Bitcoin?
“Absolutely not! Bitcoin is governed by a program – an algorithm. The Barter is not governed by a program or an algorithm. The Barter Unit does not consist of or utilize any cryptography methodologies. Furthermore, we do not promote or officially claim the Barter Unit as cryptocurrency. We perceive the Barter Unit as a private digital currency designed to facilitate trade within the BarterUnit community and to ultimately combat poverty.”
What challenges are the BarterUnit establishment currently experiencing?
“The biggest challenge we currently face is educating the people about the importance and benefits of an alternative currency system, such as the Barter Unit. However, I think once we figure out a way to enlighten the people about the Barter Unit benefits and the incentives that follow, they will surely adopt the concept. It’s definitely a no brainer concept. It’s just a matter of properly educating the people and we’re arduously working on that.”
Do you believe the Barter Unit can really work in producing economic security and freedom for all?
“Yes absolutely! However, it’s not so much based on what I believe. It’s based on what the people believe. The Barter Unit’s strength and value is based on the faith of its users. Once people put their faith into our system and adopt it properly, the sky is the limit. I truly believe this could work as a viable alternative currency system and most importantly reduce and eliminate poverty for all Americans.”
How many Barter Units are currently in circulation?
“We currently have over 1 million barter units in circulation and the number is growing rapidly. If you equate that in terms of dollar value, that’s a circulation valued at over $1 million U.S. dollars.”
How do users obtain these Barter Units?
“Well, there are a number of ways users can obtain Barter Units. Users can obtain Barter Units by posting and trading their goods, services and unwanted items in the marketplace, in exchange for Barter Units or they can easily purchase Barter Unitsvia their wallet. Additionally, users can win Barter Units during our weekly Barter Unit giveaway via our mobile application. However, Phase 4, which is coming soon, is a significant part of the Barter Unit distribution process. Specifically, Phase 4 will be designed to stimulate and expand the Barter Unit economy. I’m really excited to see the overall results of this specific phase.”
Is the Barter Unit system strictly for Americans only? Can people who live in other countries participate, say for the people in Venezuela?
“Well, it’s an American company specifically designed for Americans. However, we know that the U.S. economy has a substantial impact on other countries. Having said that, one of our primary agendas is to prevent exclusions, especially exclusions based on geographic locations and nationality. So, we encourage people from all corners of the globe to participate. We like to think of the Barter Unit as a potential universal digital alternative currency that can be easily utilized worldwide. So yes, given the current economic crises in Venezuela, this would be a great system for the people of Venezuela.”
Phillip, what would say to the average someone to encourage them to adopt the Barter Unit?
“Listen, it’s time to unrig the system and create new rules for the economy. This is a fight for the soul of our country. If you want more purchasing power, if you want better living standards, if you want economic security and freedom, if you want to be part of an economic revolution that helps the economically marginalized, if you’re fed up with the financial exclusions and with the corruption in our economy, then adopt the Barter Unit. We’re here to help everyone survive a broken and disproportionate economy. That is our overall agenda! The more people who adopt the barter unit, the more it becomes valuable. So, tell your friends and family members to join and participate in revolutionizing the way we collectively purchase and trade. Together we can transform communities and make a positive economic difference.”
Perez has informed us that he is determined to create a system that enables working families and the poor to succeed and thrive. A system that does not exclude the poor, unbanked, unemployed and immigrants. A system that works for everyone.