Tag Archives: Cryptocurrencies

Deplatforming Paves the Way for Cryptocurrency, by Tom Luongo

Never underestimate the resourcefulness of those denied platforms on the internet. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:

The recent deplatforming of Sargon of Akkad by Patreon has a lot of people very nervous.  I became worried we’d get to this state the first time they went after Gab for not allowing their app in the Google or Apple stores.

It became obvious then that we would wind up here today.  It starts with saying that certain things are unacceptable based on arbitrary enforcement of Terms of Service and ends with backroom pressure to cut a person off from making money.

Google began demonetizing channels which were politically unpalatable to its senior management.  So, a lot of demonetized YouTubers moved to Patreon, asking subscribers to support them directly rather than deal with intrusive ads.

And now Patreon has gotten into the game.  But, we always knew that they would.  They went after Laura Southern last year.

Alex Jones was simultaneously thrown off every platform and then Gab was taken down over a 48-hour period with no warning over having a particular user on its platform.

Yes, that guy shot up a synagogue.  That’s not Gab’s problem.

Continue reading

Advertisements

IMF Reveals That Cryptocurrency Is The New World Order End Game, by Brandon Smith

Brandon Smith is probably right on this one. From Smith at alt-market.com:

There are two kinds of globalist schemes: First, there are the schemes they spring on the public out of nowhere haphazardly in the hopes that the speed of the event along with some shock and awe will confuse the masses and make them psychologically pliable. This strategy loses effectiveness quickly, though; the longer the plan takes to implement, the more time the people have to reconsider what is actually happening and why.

Second, there are schemes they slowly implant in the collective psyche of the citizenry over many years, much like subliminal messaging or hypnosis. This strategy is designed to make the public embrace certain destructive ideologies or ideas as if these ideas were their own.

The cryptocurrency scam is of the second variety.

I have been suspicious of the cryptocurrency narrative of a “decentralized and anonymous monetary revolution” since 2009, when I was first approached by people claiming to be “representatives” of bitcoin and asked to become a promoter of the technology. After posing a few very simple questions and receiving no satisfactory answers, I declined to join the bandwagon or act as a frontman.

Continue reading

Reimagining Trusted Intermediaries, by Electric Capital

A growing number of people have trust issues with a growing number of institutions, including financial intermediaries. That is why cryptocurrencies are here to stay, and their roles will undoubtedly evolve and expand. From Electric Capital at medium.com:

A form of disruptive innovation occurs when a cultural shift is combined with utilitarian technology that allows the culture shift to scale. Blockchain and cryptocurrencies have both of these properties. They are a cultural shift manifesting through useful technology:

  1. We are in the midst of a global collapse of trust in institutions.
  2. Technologies (blockchain, digitally scarce coins, distributed consensus, etc.) allow us to operate without these trusted intermediaries are now emerging, and allow us to reimagine a world without these intermediaries.

In the midst of crypto-mania, we believe it important to focus on the utility behind the hype: Blockchain is software that allows us to reimagine trusted intermediaries. Cryptocurrencies are one of the first killer applications. Cryptocurrencies are reimagining the world’s most successful means to transmit trust: money.

Continue reading

Government Tracking of Crypto Is Growing, But There Are Ways to Avoid It, by Simon Chandler

Many cryptocurrencies are not at all “anonymous,” free from the prying eyes of governments. From Simon Chandler at cointelegraph.com:

Much noise has been made about the untraceable qualities of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin “can be used to buy merchandise anonymously” said early primers on crypto, it offers users the kind of financial privacy that was previously available only from a “Swiss bank account,” say more recent commentators. And given its ability to provide people with a layer of anonymity and privacy, it has been smeared by politicians, experts and mainstream journalists alike as a hiding place for almost any hacker, drug dealer, gang member, terrorist or despot you could possibly name (even if cash is still the preferred financial medium of such personae non gratae).

Continue reading

Crypto-Mania Collapse Update: $638 Billion Gone, by Wolf Richter

Wolf Richter puts some dollars and cents on the latest cryptocurrency plunge. From Richter at wolfstreet.com:

Of the seven biggest, six have plunged by 78% to 92%.

Cryptocurrencies and tokens are multiplying like rabbits: There are now 1,926 listed on CoinMarketCap.com, 500 more than early 2018. And even as the number of cryptos continues to swell, each crypto constantly creates new units through “mining.” This dilution and hyperinflation is worse than with all but the worst fiat currencies, such as the Venezuelan bolivar.

Cryptos are “decentralized.” That was one of the major selling points in whitepapers full of intelligent-sounding gobbledygook and other propaganda promoted in myriad ways, including by an army of crypto trolls and celebrities paid by the tweet. Because cryptos are decentralized, everyone can create their own, and all kinds of outfits are mining new units of existing cryptos. It’s really just a big joke. But people are losing large amounts usually expressed in their hated fiat currency. The pain is real. And the numbers are big.

At the peak on January 7, total market cap was $704 billion, per CoinMarketCap at the time. Continue reading

Vitalik’s Wrong, Cryptocurrency’s Real Problem, by Allan Stevo

Before there is mass public acceptance of cryptocurrencies, somebody is going to have to figure out something that will make cryptocurrencies useful to the masses. From Allan Stevo at lewrockwell.com:

Vitalik Buterin, a powerhouse in crypto, the mastermind behind the Ethereum network, effectively denounced those obsessed with the price of crypto and its possibility for breeding derivative financial instruments, tweeting recently “I think there’s too much emphasis on BTC/ETH/whatever ETFs, and not enough emphasis on making it easier for people to buy $5 to $100 in cryptocurrency via cards at corner stores. The former is better for pumping price, but the latter is much better for actual adoption.”

But this too misses the point.

Crypto provides no value to the average Westerner. Making crypto more accessible is not enough.

There’s no reason for the average Westerner – my aunt and uncle for example – to care, because crypto brings no additional functionality to their lives. They ask me about it practically every time we talk. When they ask me what to do with it, despite my five years of involvement in the industry, I have no answer.

All crypto, Bitcoin included, is a speculative play at this stage. Like any early stage technology, we have yet to figure out many uses in which Bitcoin beats the legacy competition in functionality.

As an example, for payments, credit cards are better than crypto. So is PayPal. Cash is better too, if only for the network effects, but in reality for far more. That’s why more people use those methods for payments than Bitcoin.

Cheering on or otherwise attempting to rush the price movements of Bitcoin is futile. Praying for its movements is futile. Pitching its potential with slick marketing is more than futile, such marketing is in fact most likely counterproductive as it will leave early adopters disillusioned.

A curse of Bitcoin is that it is a currency and it is unable to be far removed in people’s minds from its very volatile price. Of course, the beauty of Bitcoin as well is that it is a currency. Through it and similar technologies, we will come to know the folly of applying natural monopoly theory to currency.

To continue reading: Vitalik’s Wrong, Cryptocurrency’s Real Problem

Conflation of Bitcoin and Blockchain, by John R. Skar

While you may not know all the in and outs of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology, it’s important to realize that they are distinct concepts. Blockchain, while used in many cryptocurrencies, also has uses entirely separate from them. From John R. Skar at lewrockwell.com:

There it is again! That smooth, subtle and seamless transition conflating cryptocurrencies, like bitcoin, with the blockchain technology. There are thousands of blog posts and news articles about bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, but the great majority fail to clearly distinguish between the technology and the digital currency that is created and transmitted by it.  In a “Bitcoin Primer” published by Coinlab, “The term Bitcoin refers to both the digital unit of stored value and the peer-to-peer network of computers transmitting and validating transactions of these units.”

In another bitcoin primer, we read “Bitcoin is a decentralized peer-to-peer payments network and a virtual currency that essentially operates as online cash.”

To some degree, it is understandable.  The original bitcoin white paper by Satoshi Nakamoto described a digital currency produced on a unique-to-bitcoin blockchain platform.  They were as inseparable as Siamese twins and many bitcoin enthusiasts share exactly that view of the world.

Conflation creates confusion, however, particularly when discussing valuation.  Allowing bitcoin to ride the coattails of the blockchain technology is misleading at best. A typical example of conflation comes from trying to compare the valuation of bitcoin to the franchise value of Mastercard and VISA.  “Quite simply, Bitcoins have value because a growing group of people believe that the underlying Bitcoin technology has value.”

Bitcoin as “coin” does not equate to VISA as transmittal medium.  Blockchain is the proper comparison.  I think that might be what Warren Buffet and Jamie Dimon are getting at when they call bitcoin a fraud.  They certainly are not referring to blockchain technology, which they know has potential to improve their businesses in many ways.  They just aren’t falling for the conflation.  In fairness, some people do try to clearly distinguish between cryptocurrency and blockchain. My point is that in most cases we should strictly confine the discussion to one or the other or at least clearly try to avoid the conflation.

To continue reading: Conflation of Bitcoin and Blockchain