Prior to the 17th century, people had little to no control over their wealth. Powerful emperors and kings could seize property and assets at will and hand them over to the higher classes or even keep it themselves. Lower class citizens were forced to lay low and keep quiet about any wealth they accumulated in fear of it being taken away. A shift in society across England and the rest of the world started to happen after certain property rights were established in areas in 1689. People were now allowed to keep more of the proceeds from their work. Citizens could be self-made and create better lives for themselves and their families without being forced to stay in a certain economic class. It is believed the Industrial Revolution started in the mid-1700s as a direct result of this action. Unfortunately, there are still some countries today that have not granted their citizens rights to their ability to create and keep their wealth. A couple of examples would be Argentina that seized $30 billion of private pensions in 2008 and placed it in their government. In 2016, Venezuela inflated the currency so much it was only worth 10% of the value sending the country into financial turmoil. Not only can wealth be taken by governments, it can be taken by individuals and companies. Now, most of the world has access to digital currencies. Digital currencies give complete control of wealth to the people owning it. What happens when people take full control of their wealth? Here are some examples of the pros and cons.
Being able to get rich selling a product or service creates competition. New and improved products are constantly developed to stay competitive. In return, the consumer wins as innovation accelerates. People tend to work harder when they know the payoff is better. The opportunity to have financial freedom for you and your family is empowering. Owning digital currencies gives you the peace of mind knowing that your wealth is secure on your own private digital wallet and cannot be seized or confiscated because there is no central authority.
Having complete control of your wealth does come with some struggles. Digital currency places a higher burden on the person to make sure their assets are secure. New people coming into the crypto scene may not know better and leave their assets on an exchange. The security records of cryptocurrency exchanges are worse than most governments. If you have digital currencies on an exchange and it gets hacked, your wealth is gone never to return. Dealing with high volatility can be stressful knowing your investment could be cut in half if the market turns downward.
Overall, countries that give the most control of wealth to the people tend to be more advanced in technology and have stronger economies. Digital currencies are universal and worldwide. They can give the stability of wealth to people in countries with unstable economies. If digital currencies can overcome the challenges of exchange security and volatility, I think controlling your own wealth will be a basic human right for everyone.