Barclay's payment gloves: The Microchip Agenda

Handy gadget?
While you were doing your Christmas shopping did you idly wish you had some gloves you could use to pay with? From the website of Barclay's bank: "To make shoppers’ wishes come true, Barclaycard has developed a small number of ‘pay-glove’ prototypes which are being trialled". The gloves, to be given a mass market release next year, use the Barclay's contact less payment system.

This looks suspiciously like "the microchip agenda," which we've been warned about for so long by the conspiracy theory community. The theory, which has been around for decades now[1], is that the global power elites want to put ID chips in their cattle (you) so everyone can easily be tracked and controlled. Many argue these chips will also ultimately emit radio waves and regulate your thoughts and behavior, as well as being able to read your mind. These chips will be linked to a global computer and used to pay for goods and services. Ultimately leading to a cashless society.

As with all conspiracy theories, or to be more accurate 'counter narratives,' it's essential to keep an open mind. It's possible there is a high demand for gloves that work like a credit card capable of making small payments, Barclays may have substantial research to show that's the case. If they do though it's surely not the market research they're using on the linked to page, carried out a mere two weeks ago[1].

Or, they may be an attempt by people higher up our global pyramid of power to push forward the notion that payments are made by a wave of the hand and an ID chip, rather than cash or a card which you carry separately from yourself in a purse or a wallet.

The absurd nature of the idea has confused people on Twitter.

The technique here is often referred to as "boiling the frog". The idea goes that if a frog is placed in boiling water, it will jump out, but if it is placed in cold water that is slowly heated it will not perceive the danger and will be cooked to death. Just as, if they'd announced back in the '90's they were going to microchip the population, the populous would have been outraged and opposed the idea. Better to move slowly towards it with ideas like this[1].

I am one of the only UK national radio presenters to have hosted a phone in on the topic of "the microchip agenda", on Kerrang Radio. The original unedited piece is here on my podcast, about 15 minutes in:

Nick Margerrison


[1] I first encountered it when listening to Alex Jones in the late 90's. David Icke has been going on about it for years, it's in his classic, "The Biggest Secret".

Here's some old video of the film maker Aaron Russo talking about it:

The boiling frog story is a widespread anecdote describing a frog slowly being boiled alive. The premise is that if a frog is placed in boiling water, it will jump out, but if it is placed in cold water that is slowly heated, it will not perceive the danger and will be cooked to death. The story is often used as a metaphor for the inability or unwillingness of people to react to significant changes that occur gradually.
This idea appears to be echoed in the "nudge theory" which is favored by David Cameron's Constervative Party.  A good wikipedia article about that here:

From which:
Most recently, the political machinery of both President Barack Obama in the United States and Prime Minister David Cameron in the UK have sought to employ Nudge Theory to advance their respective domestic policy goals. In both the UK and the Australian state of NSW there is a Behavioural Insights Team in the government


Adam said…
Nudge Theory is the sort of social engineering that seeks not to limit choices (that would be anti-consumerist) but rather to make bad choice more inconvenient. Healthy apples front and centre; fattening pastries in behind. It's how the gov't deals with smokers; increase taxes on cigarettes and ban it in public. Change their behaviour by imposing burdens. People, like most things in nature, follow the path of least resistance. So if you introduce a nuisance like the chip gloves, people will come to their own conclusion and request the more convenient chip implant. "I like the idea of paying quicker but these gloves are quite aggravating; why not just put the RFID tag right into my hand." They will request it of their own free will. Also, if you have a couple of children go missing - one chipped and one not - you can demonstrate the positives of a chipped society. Chipped child found via GPS. Now the public demands implants. The choice is between a comfortable life or a difficult one. Make easy on yourself and give in.

I call that kind of thinking "Transcoincidentalism", coincidence by design. By starting with an outcome and working backwards you are able to design the path that leads to your desired conclusion. It's similar to magical thinking. A sort of reflexivity that blurs cause and effect giving one the false belief they're choosing spontaneously.

All experiences are mediated in a virtual world. Surveillance is necessary to extend that mediation into autonomous areas. It's less about control than it is about judgement. Ever-present parental supervision.

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