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bostonangler

Donald Trump is right about bitcoin

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Thank you, Mr. President.

Donald Trump’s comments about bitcoin and the other cryptocurrencies on Thursday were right on target.

He’s right: Their value is “based on thin air.” Your typical cryptocurrency is basically a “frequent flyers” program, only without any airline attached. You hope someone will accept your “miles” for something real. But there’s no guarantee.

He’s right: They are ”highly volatile.” In the past two years bitcoin BTCUSD, -3.31%   has gone from $19,000 to $3,200 and back up to $11,000 and change.

He’s right: They can “facilitate unlawful behavior.” I’d argue that’s their main use.

And he’s right: If Facebook FB, +0.10%   wants to launch its own currency, it should seek a banking charter.

 

The president made his comments after palling around with techies at a “social media” summit at the White House. (His glowing references to the U.S. dollar — “...stronger than ever... by far the most dominant currency anywhere in the World...” — also suggest that Larry “King Dollar” Kudlow, his chief economic adviser, has been whispering recently in his ear.)

They come as another cryptocurrency bubble, or mania, threatens to reinflate.

Bitcoin has trebled so far this year, and is back above $10,000. Cryptocurrencies are like a virus that won’t die. They keep metastasizing. There are still more than 2,000 cryptocurrencies in existence, and their theoretical total value is about $318 billion — more than the value of Procter & Gamble PG, +0.35%   , and only slightly less than that of Exxon Mobil XOM, -0.32%  .

I know which I’d rather own.

Cryptocurrencies are a pure gamble with no discernible fundamentals whatsoever. The cryptocurrency “markets” are rife with fraud, scams and manipulation. I’d love them if I were a con artist.

Have fun. But you are better off wagering your money at the race track: At least there you can see the horses.

Cryptocurrency fans were cheering Trump’s comments on Thursday, because their market feeds on attention. Trump caused a brief — very brief — spike in the price of Bitcoin.

But they can’t contradict a single one of his arguments. He’s right. He’s so right, his comments are truisms.

It was Ohio State coach Woody Hayes who said allegedly that when a quarterback throws a pass, only three things can happen, “and two of them are bad.” But cryptocurrencies are even worse. When cryptocurrencies boom, only two things can happen, and both of them are bad.

The first is that they can boom, and then they can crash — at which point you find that lots of ordinary retail investors have been hosed, in dotcom style, by insiders.

Plenty of that happened in 2017. Some of the cases are now making their way through the courts.

That’s bad.

The second is that cryptocurrencies can boom, and then NOT crash.

If that happens, congratulations: You’ve just helped create a shadow currency system that can be used worldwide by terrorists, extortionists, drug dealers, child pornographers, hit men, and anyone else who doesn’t want to go through the regular banking system.

That’s even worse than the first outcome.

Some of the biggest fans of cryptocurrency: Hackers who use ransomware to extort money from hospitals, municipalities and others. The global WannaCry ransomware attack of 2017 helped put Bitcoin on the map.

Yes, by all means let’s make that even easier, shall we?

Cheerleaders for cryptocurrencies like to present themselves as noble, heroic champions of monetary “freedom.” Digital currencies will “democratize” money, break up power structures, “decentralize” the world, and so on.

It’s all nonsense.

Anarchy doesn’t help the weak, it helps the powerful. It doesn’t serve the interests of the honorable, but of the ruthless. Read up on the Dark Ages, folks. Read up on the Wild West.

The naive who rail against regulation and big government need to study more about what the world was like before these terrible, terrible things came along.

In some parts of the crypto cult, there’s more than a whiff of paranoia about banks and “international financial interests.” Cue: Illuminati, Elders of Zion, the Rothchilds, Federal Reserve, and so on.

(How ironic, incidentally, that Trump was happy to pander to those people during his election campaign)

But one aspect of bitcoin isn’t often talked about. It isn’t really forward-looking. It’s incredibly retro.

Bitcoin is tight money. There’s only a limited supply of bitcoins . The number in existence cannot be expanded by much, and only very slowly. And we’ve seen this movie before. Tight money helped cause the Great Depression of the 1930s and probably the previous great depression of the 1870s. Tight money helped make the European debt crisis much worse. Money is a medium of exchange. If there isn’t enough of it to go around, the economy simply slows down.

Tight money — once based on gold — was a disastrous financial superstition.

Actually, the current debate in finance is about how loose you can make money. Modern Monetary Theory argues, in effect, that you can pretty much loosen it all you want. That may be the other extreme. But at least it makes money the servant of the economy, not the other way around.

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/donald-trump-is-right-about-bitcoin-2019-07-12?siteid=yhoof2&yptr=yahoo

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Everyone is untitled to an opinion......The blockchain dynamic is here to stay and we will all be better for it....Cryptocurrencies in part fuel the blockchain....

 

You can go back to the 90's where most everyone poo- pooed the internet as a pipe dream......that turned out pretty well......don't  you think?

 

The World has caught on to the scam the Bankers and World Governments have been running and this alternative came from that.....still a work in progress.....but really?.....do you think the FIAT system is any better?      CL

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11 hours ago, coorslite21 said:

do you think the FIAT system is any better?   

Can i get an Amen?

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I don't know why you are frustrated with me... I didn't say it... I have said many times I don't understand it and that I don't like a digital currency because you won't be able to hide money under your mattress or work under the table. If the world goes digital every bit of your income/wealth would be known. This is one more step to eliminate privacy...

 

As far as blockchain compared to the internet, the internet had many busts along the way and blockchain which is used for every aspect of business will also have many busts along the way... Crypto is one small piece of blockchain technology and may be the equivalent of the dot com bust.... I don't know, because I don't see any real value other than what someone is willing to pay. Like collecting baseball cards, one year they are valuable and the next they change. I also don't like the fact that criminals are using it or that rogue nations are using it to hide their evil ways.. Of course this is just my opinion, and in the years to come, we may all have credits like they use on Star Trek.

 

 

B/A

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Throw Facebook on the Barbie

please turn your images on

Francis Scialabba

Top lawmakers grilled Facebook (-0.03%) in a tense Senate hearing yesterday, questioning the social network’s plan to launch its own digital currency.

The 15-second backstory: Last month, Facebook unveiled Libra, a cryptocurrency aimed at expanding global financial services. But before Zuck could say “democratize banking,” critics pounced with tough questions for Libra, especially given FB’s prior data troubles.

Which brings us to yesterday

The Senate Banking Committee stuffed Facebook’s blockchain head David Marcus in a crypto locker over the company’s market power and previous mistakes, arguing Libra would only expand Facebook’s online dominance. 

Sen. Sherrod Brown: Like a toddler who has gotten his hands on a book of matches, Facebook has burned down the house over and over, and called every arson a learning experience.”

Sen. Martha McSally:I don’t trust Facebook...instead of cleaning up your house, you are starting a new business model.”

Marcus:We agree with all of the concerns.” His other rebuttals? 

  • Facebook is just one of almost 30 firms that would run Libra. 
  • Libra won’t launch until all regulatory concerns are addressed.
  • Calibra, the Switzerland-based subsidiary running Libra, won’t share users’ financial info with Facebook.

FYI, Marcus did have some allies in the room. “To strangle this baby in the crib is premature,” said struggling novelist and senator Patrick J. Toomey. “I think we should be...considering the benefits and concerns.” 

Big picture: These senators join Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Fed Chair Jerome Powell, and even President Trump on the growing list of Libra skeptics. But the hearing also resurfaced an even bigger question—how will cryptocurrencies be regulated by the federal government?

Looking ahead...Facebook has said it wants to launch Libra in earnest next year. But first it’ll have to testify before the House Financial Services Committee, which is firing up the grill for its hearing later today.  

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5 minutes ago, rw.sutton said:

Throw Facebook on the Barbie

please turn your images on

Francis Scialabba

Top lawmakers grilled Facebook (-0.03%) in a tense Senate hearing yesterday, questioning the social network’s plan to launch its own digital currency.

The 15-second backstory: Last month, Facebook unveiled Libra, a cryptocurrency aimed at expanding global financial services. But before Zuck could say “democratize banking,” critics pounced with tough questions for Libra, especially given FB’s prior data troubles.

Which brings us to yesterday

The Senate Banking Committee stuffed Facebook’s blockchain head David Marcus in a crypto locker over the company’s market power and previous mistakes, arguing Libra would only expand Facebook’s online dominance. 

Sen. Sherrod Brown: Like a toddler who has gotten his hands on a book of matches, Facebook has burned down the house over and over, and called every arson a learning experience.”

Sen. Martha McSally:I don’t trust Facebook...instead of cleaning up your house, you are starting a new business model.”

Marcus:We agree with all of the concerns.” His other rebuttals? 

  • Facebook is just one of almost 30 firms that would run Libra. 
  • Libra won’t launch until all regulatory concerns are addressed.
  • Calibra, the Switzerland-based subsidiary running Libra, won’t share users’ financial info with Facebook.

FYI, Marcus did have some allies in the room. “To strangle this baby in the crib is premature,” said struggling novelist and senator Patrick J. Toomey. “I think we should be...considering the benefits and concerns.” 

Big picture: These senators join Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Fed Chair Jerome Powell, and even President Trump on the growing list of Libra skeptics. But the hearing also resurfaced an even bigger question—how will cryptocurrencies be regulated by the federal government?

Looking ahead...Facebook has said it wants to launch Libra in earnest next year. But first it’ll have to testify before the House Financial Services Committee, which is firing up the grill for its hearing later today.  

 

Great read thanks... I'm out of pluses, I owe you one.

 

B/A

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On 7/17/2019 at 8:45 AM, bostonangler said:

 

Great read thanks... I'm out of pluses, I owe you one.

 

B/A

thanks B/A, Ive got to believe we are close. Im getting lots of emails from different friends, guess we will see!

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