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To print... or not to print? The effects of lost money and effective death taxes.
So, in the perfect economy, all goods would be distributed to every person according to their needs, and all people would have access to resources. However, there is a choice gradient, especially for simple wants, and that is why money, pricing, and markets exist. There is no socialist replacement that encapsulates a weighting of extreme want, vs need. For example, consider the following choice of life for life. Person aged 79. Has heart disease. Needs a new heart, will probably die in 3 years without a new heart. REALLY REALLY wants to live. Person aged 17. Has heart disease. Needs a new heart, will die in 2 months without a new heart. Suffers from depression and is suicidal. Now, who needs the heart more? They are both humans, and both of their lives are important. They *SHOULD* both be saved. But, without artificial hearts, we need to make a choice, and if they both had equal resources, then they could devote their resources towards what was meaningful to them. Now in a society that only cares about absolute life lived, it is a no brainer to sacrifice the old to save the young, despite the older person having more wealth, and caring more about life, and having less of a need for the transplant. But in our capitalist society, the call will be made to save the one who spends more money. And this is the tyranny of capitalism. But what about the choice of a woman who wants to homeschool her child vs a man who wants to buy a new car? This is a different choice, and is a choice of wants. Again, markets currently make this choice. Circumstances are everything, and need vs want is really not clear cut. For example, what if the car is needed to provide resources for a family? Or what if the homeschooling needs to be done because the child's life is at risk? These complicate the difference between need and want and turn clear cut decisions into aggregate inputs of demand. Which comes down to markets, pricing, money... and a useful discussion about whether the printing of new money is beneficial or harmful to a society in terms of socialist goals of having everyone fed clothed, and well off. There are two schools of thought in this. Keynesian and Austrian economics. The Keynesian economic system is the economic system that drives modern capitalism. Under Keynesian theory, the goal is to devalue money at a slow, steady rate. This devaluing of money makes holding money akin to playing with a hot potato. People are penalized for saving, and they are encouraged to take on debt and over leverage themselves to acquire material possessions. This drives the rampant materialism seen so often in capitalist countries, and drives the valuation of material wealth over human life. People are driven to consume, and thus consumer culture arises as a function of devaluing money. The end game of Keynesian economics can be seen in hyper inflation, where the prices of all goods soar above the ability of the people to buy, and wages do not rise to meet the needs of the people. The alternative is Austrian economics. Under the Austrian economic system, no new money is printed. The money supply is set in stone. When money is lost, it is lost forever, and there is slightly less money circulating in the system. As a consequence, the prices of all goods fall slightly over time to accommodate the lost value, and the appreciation of the base currency. This means that the everyday individual has an effective constant rise to their wages and standard of living if their wage does not change. If you want a very deep dive into Austrian economics, check here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Austrian_School Austrian economists tend to be anarchocapitalist in their opinions, and nowhere is this more readily seen than in the bitcoin sphere. However, the implications of a society where no money is printed is extreme. Firstly, minimum wage would never have to be increased. Instead, employers would be fighting tooth and nail to see the minimum wage decrease. Consider a real world example. In 2010, the price of 1 bitcoin was $31.00. Say that congress had ordered that the minimum wage was to be 1 bitcoin. That same value today is $ 11,352. Now, this is obviously extreme, but it illustrates a powerful trend that would empower the working class over time, and dis-empower employers. I wish I had a better example where there was less rampant speculation than bitcoin, but other examples do not exist. Bitcoin is the longest running monetary system in modern times that is backed by a finite resource. Fiat currencies have gone off the gold standard. This of course does not solve the other fundamental problems of capitalism. But it is a step ahead of the fiat system that dominates the capitalist world, and I believe a system where money was not printed would empower the workers and everyday people of the world.
Hi everybody I am still getting started in the world of cryptocurrencies, focusing on understanding how bitcoin works. I chose bitcoin because it is the most established cryptocurrency and with the higher chance of becoming a full fledge currency worldwide, being used by everyone (at least that’s what I think at the moment, I might be wrong here) I know that the practical limit for bitcoin is 21 million bitcoins and each bitcoin can be divided into 100 million satoshi. My question is, assuming bitcoin takes over as a single global currency and everyone is using it, isn’t the total amount of satoshi too little? I mean, if you split the total amount of bitcoin by everyone in the world, each person receives a relative small amount of bitcoin (I did a rough estimate, and from my estimates, each person would have the equivalent of 30€ in bitcoin) Thanks in advance for dedicating the time to this weird question :) EDIT: Thank you all for the answers. Like it has been said I agree that the main obstacle for bitcoin to become the one currency on a global scale is politics because no one, in this case governments would like to loose control of their money. With the increase in market cap and the subdivision of satoshi’s (part that I was unaware of), bitcoin could be used as the global currency because, at the same time, bitcoin would have enough “value” to represent the global economy and would be divisible enough to a reasonable value for cheap stuff like a bottle of water. The main technical issue that I see at the moment is the difference to fiat in how bitcoin is stored (hardware wallets) and transferred between two entities (addresses and private keys). For me it is something that I am starting to understand but I think it would be close to impossible for the majority of people that are older / not so tech oriented. I haven’t yet bought bitcoin, just got a bit of exposure to it using Revolut and decided to explore it on a deeper level. One other thing that was referred was that subdividing satoshi’s is similar to “printing” money and would lead to inflation. I understand why this is being said, because creating money or dividing the current supply into smaller amounts can be seen as having the same overall effect. I think that the key difference in the division of satoshi’s is that it is not controlled by a central authority. For example if a new base unit that corresponded to 1/100 of a satoshi was created, everyone would be affected equally. When money is being printed by a central bank or government, they are increasing their wealth by making everyone else poorer, since they are increasing the percentage of money they have (note that I am not an economist and this explanation probably is flawed).
Instead of honest democracy or free-market meritocracy, we truly live under rule by parasites. (This term is not meant to be derogatory but to be apt. I suppose many, if not most of us, would opt to be one of the parasites, if given the choice.) Trying to describe how the financial and political elites receive unearned wealth and power can get complicated very quickly. To find a simple but rigorous theory to cover most major features of the beast requires looking at it the right way. By and large, how it works is that:
The elites use state power to prop up the values of money, debt, and other financial assets artificially, to benefit those who issue them, i.e. themselves. When some over-valued asset eventually must crash, the entire economy suffers the loss of jobs, business and savings.
Example: The Bank Account Public illusion. A commercial-bank 'deposit' is as good as money. You will get all your money back, any time you want. Reality. 'Deposits' are really loans to the bank which lends them to borrowers, some of whom may never pay them back. Another danger is that savers may ask for their money at any time, while loans by the bank tend to have longer-term maturities. How to bridge myth and reality. An truly free-market system would drive banks to communicate expectations openly. A simple example could be having 'depositors' expect to lose money if the bank makes bad loans. The problem with such an honest system, of course, is that top politicians and bankers wouldn't benefit much, since people would likely put much less money in banks. The confidence trick. The government props up the illusion, while it can. Classic tools over the centuries include allowing banks to collude by rescuing each other in a crisis, bailing banks out with public money, and providing deposit insurance. If this gives bankers the incentives to take too much risk, bankers redeem themselves by being a lender to the government. Since both sets of elites benefit, what problem is there? (In recent decades investment banks and money market funds have formed a shadow banking system which plays an equivalent role. While the last US commercial-bank bust happened in the 1980s' savings-and-loan crisis, the last shadow-bank variety occurred in 2007-8.) Analysis. While credit is indeed crucial to economic growth, to use government power to prop up the values of loans to banks, and then to rely on bureaucrats and their rules to limit risk-taking by bankers is a distortion of the credit market. It is the driver of much human misery. Central planning, somehow, always benefits the few at the expense of the many, even if it claims to do just the opposite.
Example: Government Bonds Public illusion. The 'full faith and credit' of the government stands behind the IOU it issues to you. Your IOU is as good as money. Reality. Since much public debt is almost as trusted as money, incurring this debt is almost as good as printing money. Politicians thus have an incentive to maximize the issuance of debt to receive free political capital, even if this destabilizes their own system in the long run. Public debt all over the world goes only up. Even though powerful governments can keep their debt bubbles going for a century or more, those incentives mean that their IOUs will eventually lose value, one way or another. How to bridge myth and reality. Even aside from the moral problems of 'money' creation and putting burden on people who can't yet vote, public debt should at least be allowed to sink or swim in the capital markets. If a government incurs too much debt, savers would be incentivized to punish it by demanding a higher yield, and politicians would in turn be incentivized to cut back borrowing. The confidence trick. When savers get too wary of public debt, the central bank steps in to buy it with freshly printed money, thus propping up the value of these IOUs. This is done in the name of 'monetary policy,' either by buying public debt directly as 'open market' operations, or, more frequently, by supplying banks with cheap new money so they will buy it. Most of the time, savers can't fight city hall, and will thus tend to buy and hold IOUs, further limiting the downside risk of their values. This entire system thus amounts to a bubble. Analysis. It doesn't matter how powerful a government is -- Public debt always crashes eventually. The dominant global empires of Spain, the Netherlands, and Britain were destroyed by this crash in their days. (In the case of Britain the relevant 'public debt' took the form of paper pound sterling that was officially an IOU for a fixed amount of gold.) No one believes US debt is really payable with anything close to the purchasing power savers and foreign central banks used to buy it, although by the time its value can no longer be propped up, most politicians and voters who have benefited from issuing it will have been gone.
Example: Money Public illusion. Central banks issue and destroy currency to manage economic output for the benefit of the public. At least in the West, proper management has resulted in low and constant inflation that has justified the public's evident trust in currency's value. Reality. The real job description of the central bank is to safeguard the state-bank alliance. It holds power over the most central asset, money, in order to discourage both politicians and bankers from issuing assets too fast and thus endangering the system. The goal is well-paced harvesting of the fruits of real work. Over the decades, prices only move in one direction: up. How to bridge myth and reality. Unfortunately, there is no way to remove the incentives to abuse the issuance of money while the state or a banking cartel has any role in the issuance. The confidence trick. The problem of holding up the public's trust in currency was solved in a simple fashion by the classical gold and silver standards in their day, while the authorities had enough precious metals to back their paper. Today, the central bank needs to keep the return on 'safe' assets (e.g. short-term Treasuries, insured deposits) above the return on non-state-issued assets, i.e. gold, silver and Bitcoin. (Recent books like 'Gold Wars' and 'The Gold Cartel' have come up with good evidence of central-bank suppression of precious metal prices by trading derivatives.) In this it seems to succeed most of the time, but fail spectacularly at other times. It also needs to keep the return on 'safe' assets below the return on risky assets like stocks, over the long term. The goal of both operations is to use state power to force savers to take risks and help prop up the bubble economy. (Ever wonder why financial crisis always seems to come back?) When you hear of 'tightening' or 'loosening' the money supply, this control is what's really going on. So, it's not that the public trusts currency; most feel they have no choice. Analysis. It's not, as most mainstream economists claim, that state-controlled money is required for modern economic growth. The Italian Renaissance and Scottish 'free-banking' era were counter-examples. It's really the other way round. The real productivity of the modern world gives value to the financial assets issued by the elites, and thus help sustain their financial inflation, at least until the perverse incentives destabilizes the system anyway. In the Middle Ages, money was physical gold and silver -- when there was no wealth to extract, the state couldn't create its financial inflation.
Final Thoughts A key feature of this system is that it doesn't matter if you understand it. You still must gamble, or risk your savings being eaten away by inflation. The gamble by the public as a whole is certain to end in loss, since the elites will always destabilize asset values to the point of collapse. The lose-lose proposition works the same way as literal highway robbery -- you can certainly hold on to your money; you just can't keep your life at the same time. That said, there are times when the elites are likely to be forced to devalue their money, and with it all other conventional assets, against gold, silver and Bitcoin, in order to hold on to power. This makes it statistically profitable to hold non-state-issued assets at those times. (An analogy would be standing at the front of the line to redeem deposits for cash during a bank run, or to redeem pound sterling for gold at the Bank of England just before Britain was forced off the gold standard.) Necessarily, only a minority will profit from this bet, but its existence is a healthy incentive that pushes the elites to minimize financial inflation. This devaluation is conceptually the same as 'banana republics' having to devalue their currency against the dollar because they've printed too much. The typical way to do this is to strongly deny any prospect of devaluation until the very moment, devalue as fast as possible (and devalue enough to keep their system stable for a while,) and deny any further devaluations in future. So, it's perhaps no accident that the price movements of gold, silver and Bitcoin have been long and gradual declines most of the time, punctuated by sharp rises over short periods, and rising overall over the long term. The system is an 'open conspiracy.' Instead of secrecy, it relies on a combination of state power and ignorance by the public. The only sustainable path to achieving a healthy and just system is for the public to wake up. But the devaluation of its issued money against non-state monies shows that, in a subtle but profoundly real sense, the system is a paper tiger. Since the power of the modern imperial system depends necessarily on various alliances of self-interest as well as the perception of its support for classically liberal ideals, if enough people, and people in the right places, refuse to be intimidated, or expose its nature, the system must make concessions, and make the world perhaps a little better. This possibility of piecewise progress exists in all corners of the system, at most times. Here, then, is where our hope must be for the future. It will be a long battle indeed, and we must be prepared for the entire duration.
“Repeat a lie often enough and it becomes the truth”- Nazi Propagandists, Joseph Goebbels.
Axioms are our base assumptions about the world. They act as filters for new information coming into our consciousness. In classic philosophy, an axiom is a statement that is so evident or well-established, that it is accepted without controversy or question. As used in modern logic, an axiom is a premise or starting point for reasoning. We use these axiomatic assumptions to build our internal models of the world around us. They allow us to compare new information we receive from the outside with our internal narratives, which helps us to decide whether to reject or accept that new information. They are, for want of a better world, your "common sense" beliefs. So how do you go about changing a relatively normal person's core beliefs and base assumptions to the point of rejecting their fellow citizens as traitors, committing acts of murderous terrorist or vigilante violence like Fascist white supremacists running down protesters in acts of terror, ISIS beheadings or mass genocide?
Shock Treatment and Slow Repetition
When I was a child I was subjected to regular mental and physical abuse from my dad. I would also see my mother repeatedly beaten up and then flee to a women's refuge where I would stay with her. Each time my mom left, whenever I visited my dad at weekends, he would constantly try to pressure and manipulate me into convincing my mom to get back together with him. This never worked of course. But what it did do, is make me highly sensitive to manipulation techniques. I was fascinated by people like the magician Derren Brown and the economist Naomi Klein - who both reveal the tricks of the trade used in the advertising and marketing industries to convince people. One way of changing people into killing machines or obedient sheep is through a big shock to the system, like how electroshock therapy allows for a clean slate to rebuild peoples intern mental models. Psychedelics are another way, having a similar effect in the brain. Encouraged by the alt right and alt-light influencers like Jordan Peterson and Rebel Wisdom as they try to “Red Pill” people (an expression taken from the film The Matrix as a metaphor for revealing revealing the truth about the world). They use this shock and disorientation as a way to prepare a “blank-slate” in order to rebuild peoples internal axiomatic models with different core beliefs. Remaking people by shocking them into obedience and gas-lighting them about their existing internal models, making them seem irrational, silly or outdated. Reducing them to a mental state of a child and then rebuilding them with a new ideology and worldview, known as “shock therapy”. As Naomi Klein explains in The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, these techniques work on larger scales with use of trauma and shock to influence political outcomes has been used since at least Milton Friedman coined the term “Economic Shock Treatment”. He advised that politicians push through painful and unpopular policies all at once during a time of crisis, before people could regain their footing. The technique is used in economic markets on the large scale, and also against individuals on a small scale with individuals too. Economics and politics is just human interaction on a larger scale, after all. Regular repetition and gentle suggestions of ideas can also instil new axiomatic models and core beliefs into people's minds. As Derren Brown demonstrates how powerful subtly suggestions can be alone, without the need for hypnosis, shocks or drugs. But used in combination, shock and repetition can shift people until they have moved their positions, perceptions and beliefs about the world, to a place they could never have imagined. But luckily once you deconstruct the deception and understand how the trick works, the illusion falls apart.
Defining and Deconstructing Modern Fascism
Firstly, we must define Modern Fascism. Modern Fascism ticks every box of the traditional definitions in Umberto Eco’s essay Ur-Fascism, and not only does it fulfil every criteria, it reveals other motivational forces and has evolved to include new aspects, and has changed into something worse, while it’s main weakness remain the same - the fact that it is primarily motivated by weakness. As General Franco said in a 1938 interview with Henri Massis: "Fascism presents, wherever it manifests itself, characteristics which are varied to the extent that countries and national temperaments vary. It is essentially a defensive reaction of the organism, a manifestation of the desire to live, of the desire not to die, which at certain times seizes a whole people. So each people reacts in its own way, according to its conception of life… What can it have in common with Hitlerism, which was, above all, a reaction against the state of things created by the defeat, and by the abdication and the despair that followed it?" This quote perfectly illustrates the transient nature of the ideology, but also the core motivations of Fascism. It is an ideology based on the assumption of weakness which yearns for restoration of a past greatness or to get revenge and recognition. But the way that it manifests itself is different in each place it takes hold. Therefore the aim of this isn’t to make the case that any particular party or country has embraced out-right fascism (plenty of other people have made that case already), the aim is to reveal the underlying motivations, highlight threats and weaknesses and analyse the less obvious negative effects of Modern Fascism.
History Doesn’t Repeat, But It Rhymes
A false equivalence that is often used is that Liberal Imperialism is just the same as Fascism. And while it is true that imperialists use fascist dictators to extract cheap labour and resources and also dominate smaller counties in a similar way to how fascist empires aspire to rule, the key difference is that the populations of those countries are not gripped by the same fear based delusions. And therefore more Liberal democracies are better equipped to hold their imperial position of power long term because they are better able to assess risks and react accordingly, rather than over-react based on paranoia and competing egos under excessive pressure. This false equivalence was also used in 1930’s Germany, because far-left Communists had been co opted and infiltrated by Fascists. They would repeat the mantra that “the Social Democrats were the real racists”. Contrary to the assumptions of most people, Fascism, as an ideology and political system of government is very distinct to white supremacy. It does of course include white supremecists, but In fact includes many other groups who have been co-opted by Fascist propaganda, or who implicitly support and enable their agenda. Examples of modern opposition which has been repeatedly infiltrated or just simply made up by Fascists include innumerable conspiracy theories, police groups like Blue Lives Matter, militant Black nationalists, the Boogaloo movement who call for a race war, the “Proud Boys” and even sometimes supposed Anarchists, far-left Communists and Left Accelerationists.
Motivations of Fascism
Fascism distilled down to its core reason for existing is the suppression of opposition who represent workers rights and economic justice. So they patently DON’T look after their own people. They con them into submission of the state by generating jingoistic fear of “the other” - whoever is convenient on that day to blame for their problems. Fascism is is an economic shock doctrine upon the inhabitants of the country. We don't spread fascist propaganda in tip-pot dictators because we care about the indiginous people there. We install Fascist dictators in order to remove workers rights and open up access to their natural resources. Artificial moral panics can be engineered and real disasters used to allow corrupt oligarchs and financial predators to consolidate power further by buying up small innovative businesses who don’t have the excess capital to survive the turmoil on their own without external support. Or as a way to eradicate public services by sabotaging them and building mistrust. They are used to erode faith in public services and institutions by rich people who simply want to pay less tax and don’t see why they should subsidise other human beings who haven’t had the same luck as them. So a major motivation of fascism is to suppress the opposition left-wing party who represent workers rights and egalitarian freedoms. Populists claim to be against free trade and to some extent they are, but whatever they do will fail because they are interfering with the markets, so they will retreat to the power of market domination. They use their threats of trade barriers as more just more shock treatment for markets, rather than protecting actual jobs or industries. This is a trick that has been played by Neoliberals too. But while Neoliberals use fascism as a tool for opening markets to Imperialism, they differ from Libertarians, not only because they embrace guns and weed, but they are starting from different positions to achieve the same goal; Neoliberals seek to remove already existing public services and workers rights that lift bargaining power. But Libertarians want to STOP the government from ever providing those services and investments into the poor or enshrining workers rights.
Modern Fascist Ideology has TWO Core Reasons to Exist; Fear and Freed.
I have been researching and analysing how economic systems differ, using a SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threads). For each economic system I tried to be as neutral, fair and balanced as possible - which included Fascism. I might seem strange that someone who is anti-Fascist would want to explore the strenghts and opportunities of Fascist ideologies, but in doing so it reveals the real weaknesses and threats which are too important for us to ignore. So what exactly IS Fascism? Is it just an economic doctrine or a personal philosophy about the world? The answer is both. The ideology has TWO core reasons to exist, and TWO distinct audiences types - with one based primarily on fear and the other greed, with each having a malignant and symbiotic relationship with each other. Fear - Authoritarian/Conservative Fascists Greed - Libertarian Fascists There are very few people who actually buy into full Fascist ideology, most believe a watered down version of which resembles Conservatism or right-wing populism or accelerationism, and most of them genuinely believe they aren’t fascist, even though they are being constantly fed subtle suggestions fascist ideology or that align with their plans. But the most ironic thing is that these groups are mostly being used by the second group of rich Libertarians globalist elites pulling a confidence trick on the host nation. Often posing “anti-establishment” conspiracists who actually uphold the establishment through misinformation. See: Russia Today and Youtube Bitcoin and Gold shills who subtly suggest fascist talking points. With those rich Libertarians at the top more than happy for those below them, who they deem less worthy, living in even more delusional ideologies with fake enemies to fear, often resembling traditional Christian but values wrapped in modern conspiracies with added elements of “satanic panic”. Modern Fascism has clearly inspired the modern day equivalents of Brownshirts and Blackshirts, self-styled vigilantes like QAnon, The Proud Boys and “The Boogaloo” - white nationalist violent extremists who want to accelerate towards a full-on race war. It has also infiltrated numerous alternative groups, such as hyper-evangelical “end times” cults, alternative health scenes, internet conspiracy scenes like flat earth and occult magic.
A commonly missing hallmark of fascism that is present in history during the rise of fascism is a controlled opposition and explicit suppression of opposition. This distorts a healthy society and has unforeseen consequences and blowback. Fantasies and political thought bubbles are self delusional custom realities resembling an episode of Black Mirror. They act as coping and escape mechanisms. Especially during the Covid 19 lock-down, these tendencies have gone into overdrive with massive events entering the real world featuring David Ike leading protesters alongside fascists as people ignore rising Fascism, climate change destruction and Covid deaths tolls. Using disasters like Covid or irrational scare tactics such as the "Satanic Panic" style Fascist propaganda from QAnon, can shock people using their fear and disgust response, while making them distrust the news - allowing the government to evade valid criticism from experts while suggesting to people that government public services are inherently evil or Communist. This type of propaganda is a Libertarians wet dream - making a population not only give up on tax funded public services, but actively fear them. An example is Trump trying to discredit and defund the US Postal Service and other public institutions and regulatory bodies. Anti Semitism has been used throughout history by those in power to provoke an “us vs. them” mentality, leading to today's establishment still sanctioning and allowing Qanon on major media platforms, provoking and agitating terrorist attackers from the far-left and the far-right. Those in power in fascist regimes allow and encourage mistrust in the mainstream media, while the long-tail niche political and interest groups keep people separated from each other, who each live in their own custom realities while the real elites continue to dominate and increase their power. With each bubble framing realities based of identity, race, class, nationality, or even subculture special interests like alternative medicine and “gamer bro” culture, so that when they interact in real life or online, they are speaking past each other because they don’t even agree on the basic principles of how they view society.
The Fatal Flaws of Living in a Fantasy
While the main flaws and weaknesses of Fascism remain the same, they are in-fact exacerbated by this new hybrid model. It’s main weakness is the very fact that it is motivated by weaknesses, fear and greed - rather than true strength, self-confidence or heroic benevolent power, as their adherents like to believe. A misconception of fascists themselves that it is based on strength, when it is actually based on weakness - even when the driving force is greed rather than fear. Libertarian fascists want to extract labour and materials at cheaper prices, while inflating their own asset values. In other words; international financiers with little allegiance to any country. Ironically the very type of people who Conservative fascists claim to be opposed to. Fascism claims to make society more successful, but it actually accelerates the destruction of the culture, country or people, rather than preserving and conserving it, because it betrays a fundamental weakness of insecurity. Competitors and rivals can easily see through the charade of and take advantage. If anything does the exact opposite. Russian and China are clearly goading Western nations into becoming more divided and totalitarian, as they themselves benefit from becoming more Liberal and open and reap the competitive advantages that brings. See Kraut’s excellent video about Trump on China as an example. Keynesian investment in the country and people, giving workers more rights, opportunities and a more bargaining power is what makes a country successful and innovative, rather than the faux Keynesian policy of giving kickbacks to corrupt officials for government contracts and widening inequality by supporting the already rich, rather than the ordinary people.
Who Benefits in This Memetic War?
Who is going to war with who? Who is winning? A modern adage is that tankies are just fascists because of their support of authoritarian proto-fascist leaders and regimes who often claim to be Communist. But from my experience talking to actual fascists, they crave a more multi-polar world where other strong leaders rise up as competition and form alliances with dictators. So to me, it looks like Fascists are the real Tankies; wishing our enemies be stronger and wanting to accelerate towards race war or civil war that weakens the society. Not only did Donald Trump have knowledge of Russia allowing ISIS bounties on US troops and withhold that from the public while courting Putin, I have personally heard white supremacists backing extremists Islamists in Discord servers. Trump jumped to the defense of the people who put a 17 year old with a gun against civil rights protesters and assumed the intent before saying that the outcome should be decided by the legal system. They share common values and beliefs like Anti Semitism, accelerationist end-times fantasies, patriarchal traditional values and a fear of outside progressive cultures. In fact modern extremists white supremecist groups share recruitment and terrorist strategies and tactics with militant islamists. You could argue that it was inflicted by Russian or Imperialist propagandists onto the German people in order to take control of larger areas of Europe after the destabilisation of war. Hitler and Stalin came to a non agression truce called The Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, which as was a secret non-aggression pact between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union that enabled those two powers to partition Poland between them. The pact, signed in Moscow on 23 August 1939 by German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop and Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Molotov was officially known as the Treaty of Non-Aggression between Germany and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. They divided Poland under the banner of fighting “Polish Fascism” nearly a century ago with both sides ultimately lying to their own people about spreading freedom while being authoritarian to their core and being able to blame “the other” as being the cause of all their problems. But these days fascism seems to be a rogue meme that no longer serves any particular group. It is pathologically damaging to any society that it happens to grip. Even the aforementioned Libertarians and accelerationists who think they are benefiting are only temporarily gaining by market price volatility. They ultimately lose through the blowback effect of the whirlpool they create.
Psychopathy, Alienation Nihilism and Insecurity
It is well established that Fascist dictators are driven by psychopathic characters and tendencies. They either don’t care about the truth, or disregard it if it’s not convenient to their narrative. In totalitarian despotic societies facts are reversed. As George Orwell proclaimed throughout his writings; “War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength.”. Similar to how authoritarian Starlinist Communists harnessed people’s alienation and tricked them into thinking that it’s possible for the state to fully decommodify everything without having markets, money to account for things, domination or hierarchy or try to convince people that a revolution is just around the corner. But of course, a council representative is still the head of an organisation, for all intents and purposes, because they wield executive power over others, even if the name has changed. Markets are emergent properties when groups of humans want or need a certain commodity when it becomes available. But while both Communist and Fascist ideologies are based on lies that harness peoples alienation, fear and envy, Fascism is also especially to the weak. It is attractive to those who want to be strong again (or were never to begin with), or those who want to have a strong leader to help them. Fascism betrays to others the inherent weakness. Like the insecure kid in school who lashes out - others around can see that it is because of their own insecurity which makes them appear even weaker. Fascism is a psychopathy driven by insecurity. When people become so absorbed in an ideology there is a phenomena of people to self identify as an actual ideology? This produces a phenomena called Identity Protective Cognition, where people's self worth becomes attached to a belief system or ideology. So that when new information contradicts their worldview it is seen as an attack on the person themselves. Therefore irrational, emotional quick fix thinking is the default when there is too much pressure and they feel attacked. They no longer use their slow effortful reflective thinking. (See Daniel Kahneman - Thinking, Fast and Slow) This approach has parallels in evolutionary biology, in which a central issue is the ability to adapt to changing environments. Competency - over-competitiveness in management causes chaos which STOPS hierarchies of competence. (Insert video clips of Sapolsky on Chaos vs Reductionism etc. timestamps linked). Fascists try to reduce variability in culture and outcomes - causes weakness of less adaptability - because as Sapolsky explains, the variability is not just noise in that type of system CAS (Complex Adaptive Systems) - the variability IS the system. It is fractal and scale free. The noise and variability is an intrinsic part of the system. But the system doesn’t function properly when the agreed-upon parameters that individuals believe to be true aren’t universal enough to have any form of group coherence. Birds and swarms of animals can produce amazing complex phenomena, which are greater than the sum of their individual parts. There is a “network effect” once a certain threshold and certain conditions and rules are met. These rules can be very simple, like repulsion or attraction, or staying a certain distance apart while traveling in a similar direction, but collectively they create patterns that emerge with complexity and I dear say, a certain amount of beauty. So what happens when millions of people are being brainwashed and misled by cults that are leaving them with a reduced ability to make decisions? Giving them shit-for-brains just so that some rich people at the top can pay a few percentage less tax? That is the sign of a deeply sick system that cannot continue to function effectively. It is sick on so many levels.
Emergence, Complexity and Human Evolution - A Social-Biological Analysis
The problem with viewing the world through only one lens of analysis (or bucket of knowledge) is that you can fall into unnecessarily reductive thinking. (Sapolsky clips) I describe myself as a philosophical anarchist. Which does NOT mean I want total chaos and disorder - it means I want the optimal solution to emerge - including the influences and experiences from the bottom-up. I also think that a bottom-up (or anarchist) lens of analysis is necessary for society to run cohesively in an optimal state. If it is repressed it distorts the overall picture of reality for everyone - similar to a CEO that doesn’t listen to employees and workers on the ground. I interpret as constantly holding authority to account - to justify its existence and reason for dominating others. I also believe it is every citizen's responsibility to hold authority to account. This would be necessary under ANY economic system or society. Anarchists also believe in stigmenric, rhizomatic action to make the world better, organically, not from a top-down authority, which fascism seeks to instill on society. Human beings are collectively parts of a bigger chaotic but stable system known as a CAS (Complex Adaptive System). CAS’s are chaotic systems that can reach periodic steady states of equilibrium. As Professor Sapolsky explains, humans uniquely exist with a mixture of both communal and individualistic tendencies; known in the scientific world as Tournament vs. pair bonding. All the evidence suggests that this tendency has greatly improved our success as a species. But those tendencies distorted too far one way or another lead to pathologies and the worst collective misdeeds and wars. Because as Professor Sapolsky also explains in his brilliant lecture series (which I have condensed the pertinent parts of into a 4 part YouTube video) about CAS; the signals coming from the randomness is being suppressed or repressed, it interferes with the functioning of the system. Pressure in the system makes the patterns more complex but at a certain point of increasing pressure in the complex system, it stops being linear and the doubling of patterns and periodicity totally stops. Order completely begins to break down because of the butterfly effect. Fascist regimes fettishise order and rigidity but in a complex adaptive system, the noise IS the phenomena, not a byproduct to be discarded, ignored or repressed. The majority of people on the right genuinely want to help society by bringing order, using top-down draconian measures if necessary. Whereas the left generally wants to help society by proactively building from the bottom up. I think both of these approaches are necessary to be balanced properly for a healthy functioning society to emerge. It seems our tendency to harness both traits and to focus intently on one or the other is our greatest collective strength, while also being our greatest weakness. And similarly, on an individual level I believe our greatest strengths and weakness are the fact that our brains work efficiently by categorising information to filter out the unimportant bits that slow us down. As the book by Daniel Kahneman - Thinking, Fast and Slow, brilliantly explains, slow deliberate, consideration thinking takes energy and time, so our brains developed filters which come out as biases. This is an inherent weakness of the human brain. Now imagine the butterfly effect on the life of just one person who is influenced by the brainworms of QAnon cults or conspiracies which distorts their internal models of the world which they use to filter information about the world The sad and shocking stories on forums like QanonCasualties show the devastating effects on their close friends, family and work life - amplified by their ever increasingly disconnected lives. (insert Flat earther clip - zoom in on idiot rolling head) Now scale that up to the level of a whole of a society, a country, or the world? This is a collective madness to cope with and avoid the reality facing us as a species. Only collective action with agreed basic facts to work from will do to avoid the total descent into actual chaos and destruction.
TLDR; Conclusion and Final Thoughts
In this essay I will have put forward the case for the following four key arguments being true and I have present supporting evidence to explain the logical reasoning for why our current definitions need updating and the threat levels reassed, from a non-hysterical but critical perspective. The overall claims I made are:
Modern Fascism has taken over right-wing populism and bears all the hallmarks of early 20th Century Fascist ideologies.
The ideology has two main reasons to exist, and two distinct audiences which both have a symbiotic, pathological relationship with each other.
The main flaws and weaknesses of fascist ideology remain the same as ever - that fascism is motivated by irrational fears, greed and self deception.
Modern Fascism has major unforeseen damaging consequences for individuals, governments, organisational dynamics, and society at large.
This reality is something I think a lot of fascists, ultra-nationalists and people who have been influenced by the propaganda know deep down on some level already - that they are avoiding the realities of pandemics and ecological harms of ignoring science and reality as it is. They ignore it because fantasies are simpler to understand. And a narrative based on fear of the other is a simpler way to to process a complex world. It is also attractive to the part of us that is drawn to conflict and drama - that hunger for something genuinely interesting to happen. But I would argue from my experience that the beautiful complexity of life in all it’s shades of grey is much more interesting, fun and genuinely fulfilling to understand and engage in, even if it might be harder to deal with and even harder to explain. I believe doing so is also vital for the very survival of our species - we can no longer afford to live in a fantasy, we need to collectively take responsibility for the world as it exists in reality. Thank you to my two Patrons: Carmen Jongepier E.V. Roske Original Script on Patreon
The Next Crypto Wave: The Rise of Stablecoins and its Entry to the U.S. Dollar Market
Author: Christian Hsieh, CEO of Tokenomy This paper examines some explanations for the continual global market demand for the U.S. dollar, the rise of stablecoins, and the utility and opportunities that crypto dollars can offer to both the cryptocurrency and traditional markets. The U.S. dollar, dominant in world trade since the establishment of the 1944 Bretton Woods System, is unequivocally the world’s most demanded reserve currency. Today, more than 61% of foreign bank reserves and nearly 40% of the entire world’s debt is denominated in U.S. dollars1. However, there is a massive supply and demand imbalance in the U.S. dollar market. On the supply side, central banks throughout the world have implemented more than a decade-long accommodative monetary policy since the 2008 global financial crisis. The COVID-19 pandemic further exacerbated the need for central banks to provide necessary liquidity and keep staggering economies moving. While the Federal Reserve leads the effort of “money printing” and stimulus programs, the current money supply still cannot meet the constant high demand for the U.S. dollar2. Let us review some of the reasons for this constant dollar demand from a few economic fundamentals.
Demand for U.S. Dollars
Firstly, most of the world’s trade is denominated in U.S. dollars. Chief Economist of the IMF, Gita Gopinath, has compiled data reflecting that the U.S. dollar’s share of invoicing was 4.7 times larger than America’s share of the value of imports, and 3.1 times its share of world exports3. The U.S. dollar is the dominant “invoicing currency” in most developing countries4. https://preview.redd.it/d4xalwdyz8p51.png?width=535&format=png&auto=webp&s=9f0556c6aa6b29016c9b135f3279e8337dfee2a6 https://preview.redd.it/wucg40kzz8p51.png?width=653&format=png&auto=webp&s=71257fec29b43e0fc0df1bf04363717e3b52478f This U.S. dollar preference also directly impacts the world’s debt. According to the Bank of International Settlements, there is over $67 trillion in U.S. dollar denominated debt globally, and borrowing outside of the U.S. accounted for $12.5 trillion in Q1 20205. There is an immense demand for U.S. dollars every year just to service these dollar debts. The annual U.S. dollar buying demand is easily over $1 trillion assuming the borrowing cost is at 1.5% (1 year LIBOR + 1%) per year, a conservative estimate. https://preview.redd.it/6956j6f109p51.png?width=487&format=png&auto=webp&s=ccea257a4e9524c11df25737cac961308b542b69 Secondly, since the U.S. has a much stronger economy compared to its global peers, a higher return on investments draws U.S. dollar demand from everywhere in the world, to invest in companies both in the public and private markets. The U.S. hosts the largest stock markets in the world with more than $33 trillion in public market capitalization (combined both NYSE and NASDAQ)6. For the private market, North America’s total share is well over 60% of the $6.5 trillion global assets under management across private equity, real assets, and private debt investments7. The demand for higher quality investments extends to the fixed income market as well. As countries like Japan and Switzerland currently have negative-yielding interest rates8, fixed income investors’ quest for yield in the developed economies leads them back to the U.S. debt market. As of July 2020, there are $15 trillion worth of negative-yielding debt securities globally (see chart). In comparison, the positive, low-yielding U.S. debt remains a sound fixed income strategy for conservative investors in uncertain market conditions. Source: Bloomberg Last, but not least, there are many developing economies experiencing failing monetary policies, where hyperinflation has become a real national disaster. A classic example is Venezuela, where the currency Bolivar became practically worthless as the inflation rate skyrocketed to 10,000,000% in 20199. The recent Beirut port explosion in Lebanon caused a sudden economic meltdown and compounded its already troubled financial market, where inflation has soared to over 112% year on year10. For citizens living in unstable regions such as these, the only reliable store of value is the U.S. dollar. According to the Chainalysis 2020 Geography of Cryptocurrency Report, Venezuela has become one of the most active cryptocurrency trading countries11. The demand for cryptocurrency surges as a flight to safety mentality drives Venezuelans to acquire U.S. dollars to preserve savings that they might otherwise lose. The growth for cryptocurrency activities in those regions is fueled by these desperate citizens using cryptocurrencies as rails to access the U.S. dollar, on top of acquiring actual Bitcoin or other underlying crypto assets.
The Rise of Crypto Dollars
Due to the highly volatile nature of cryptocurrencies, USD stablecoin, a crypto-powered blockchain token that pegs its value to the U.S. dollar, was introduced to provide stable dollar exposure in the crypto trading sphere. Tether is the first of its kind. Issued in 2014 on the bitcoin blockchain (Omni layer protocol), under the token symbol USDT, it attempts to provide crypto traders with a stable settlement currency while they trade in and out of various crypto assets. The reason behind the stablecoin creation was to address the inefficient and burdensome aspects of having to move fiat U.S. dollars between the legacy banking system and crypto exchanges. Because one USDT is theoretically backed by one U.S. dollar, traders can use USDT to trade and settle to fiat dollars. It was not until 2017 that the majority of traders seemed to realize Tether’s intended utility and started using it widely. As of April 2019, USDT trading volume started exceeding the trading volume of bitcoina12, and it now dominates the crypto trading sphere with over $50 billion average daily trading volume13. https://preview.redd.it/3vq7v1jg09p51.png?width=700&format=png&auto=webp&s=46f11b5f5245a8c335ccc60432873e9bad2eb1e1 An interesting aspect of USDT is that although the claimed 1:1 backing with U.S. dollar collateral is in question, and the Tether company is in reality running fractional reserves through a loose offshore corporate structure, Tether’s trading volume and adoption continues to grow rapidly14. Perhaps in comparison to fiat U.S. dollars, which is not really backed by anything, Tether still has cash equivalents in reserves and crypto traders favor its liquidity and convenience over its lack of legitimacy. For those who are concerned about Tether’s solvency, they can now purchase credit default swaps for downside protection15. On the other hand, USDC, the more compliant contender, takes a distant second spot with total coin circulation of $1.8 billion, versus USDT at $14.5 billion (at the time of publication). It is still too early to tell who is the ultimate leader in the stablecoin arena, as more and more stablecoins are launching to offer various functions and supporting mechanisms. There are three main categories of stablecoin: fiat-backed, crypto-collateralized, and non-collateralized algorithm based stablecoins. Most of these are still at an experimental phase, and readers can learn more about them here. With the continuous innovation of stablecoin development, the utility stablecoins provide in the overall crypto market will become more apparent.
In addition to trade settlement, stablecoins can be applied in many other areas. Cross-border payments and remittances is an inefficient market that desperately needs innovation. In 2020, the average cost of sending money across the world is around 7%16, and it takes days to settle. The World Bank aims to reduce remittance fees to 3% by 2030. With the implementation of blockchain technology, this cost could be further reduced close to zero. J.P. Morgan, the largest bank in the U.S., has created an Interbank Information Network (IIN) with 416 global Institutions to transform the speed of payment flows through its own JPM Coin, another type of crypto dollar17. Although people argue that JPM Coin is not considered a cryptocurrency as it cannot trade openly on a public blockchain, it is by far the largest scale experiment with all the institutional participants trading within the “permissioned” blockchain. It might be more accurate to refer to it as the use of distributed ledger technology (DLT) instead of “blockchain” in this context. Nevertheless, we should keep in mind that as J.P. Morgan currently moves $6 trillion U.S. dollars per day18, the scale of this experiment would create a considerable impact in the international payment and remittance market if it were successful. Potentially the day will come when regulated crypto exchanges become participants of IIN, and the link between public and private crypto assets can be instantly connected, unlocking greater possibilities in blockchain applications. Many central banks are also in talks about developing their own central bank digital currency (CBDC). Although this idea was not new, the discussion was brought to the forefront due to Facebook’s aggressive Libra project announcement in June 2019 and the public attention that followed. As of July 2020, at least 36 central banks have published some sort of CBDC framework. While each nation has a slightly different motivation behind its currency digitization initiative, ranging from payment safety, transaction efficiency, easy monetary implementation, or financial inclusion, these central banks are committed to deploying a new digital payment infrastructure. When it comes to the technical architectures, research from BIS indicates that most of the current proofs-of-concept tend to be based upon distributed ledger technology (permissioned blockchain)19. https://preview.redd.it/lgb1f2rw19p51.png?width=700&format=png&auto=webp&s=040bb0deed0499df6bf08a072fd7c4a442a826a0 These institutional experiments are laying an essential foundation for an improved global payment infrastructure, where instant and frictionless cross-border settlements can take place with minimal costs. Of course, the interoperability of private DLT tokens and public blockchain stablecoins has yet to be explored, but the innovation with both public and private blockchain efforts could eventually merge. This was highlighted recently by the Governor of the Bank of England who stated that “stablecoins and CBDC could sit alongside each other20”. One thing for certain is that crypto dollars (or other fiat-linked digital currencies) are going to play a significant role in our future economy.
There is never a dull moment in the crypto sector. The industry narratives constantly shift as innovation continues to evolve. Twelve years since its inception, Bitcoin has evolved from an abstract subject to a familiar concept. Its role as a secured, scarce, decentralized digital store of value has continued to gain acceptance, and it is well on its way to becoming an investable asset class as a portfolio hedge against asset price inflation and fiat currency depreciation.Stablecoins have proven to be useful as proxy dollars in the crypto world, similar to how dollars are essential in the traditional world. It is only a matter of time before stablecoins or private digital tokens dominate the cross-border payments and global remittances industry. There are no shortages of hypes and experiments that draw new participants into the crypto space, such as smart contracts, new blockchains, ICOs, tokenization of things, or the most recent trends on DeFi tokens. These projects highlight the possibilities for a much more robust digital future, but the market also needs time to test and adopt. A reliable digital payment infrastructure must be built first in order to allow these experiments to flourish. In this paper we examined the historical background and economic reasons for the U.S. dollar’s dominance in the world, and the probable conclusion is that the demand for U.S. dollars will likely continue, especially in the middle of a global pandemic, accompanied by a worldwide economic slowdown. The current monetary system is far from perfect, but there are no better alternatives for replacement at least in the near term. Incremental improvements are being made in both the public and private sectors, and stablecoins have a definite role to play in both the traditional and the new crypto world. Thank you. Reference:  How the US dollar became the world’s reserve currency, Investopedia  The dollar is in high demand, prone to dangerous appreciation, The Economist  Dollar dominance in trade and finance, Gita Gopinath  Global trades dependence on dollars, The Economist & IMF working papers  Total credit to non-bank borrowers by currency of denomination, BIS  Biggest stock exchanges in the world, Business Insider  McKinsey Global Private Market Review 2020, McKinsey & Company  Central banks current interest rates, Global Rates  Venezuela hyperinflation hits 10 million percent, CNBC  Lebanon inflation crisis, Reuters  Venezuela cryptocurrency market, Chainalysis  The most used cryptocurrency isn’t Bitcoin, Bloomberg  Trading volume of all crypto assets, coinmarketcap.com  Tether US dollar peg is no longer credible, Forbes  New crypto derivatives let you bet on (or against) Tether’s solvency, Coindesk  Remittance Price Worldwide, The World Bank  Interbank Information Network, J.P. Morgan  Jamie Dimon interview, CBS News  Rise of the central bank digital currency, BIS  Speech by Andrew Bailey, 3 September 2020, Bank of England
I’m writing this because I wish to explain in layman terms why the global economy is broken. Most people intuitively feel that the economy is a mess and bad things are happening. Words like corruption, crony capitalism, money printing and bailouts are being tossed about as explanations why the economy is in trouble. While all these things are problems our economy is facing and deserve attention, they are all consequences of a fundamental problem that needs to be understood first and foremost. That is, money itself is broken. To understand how fiat money we use is broken, one should view money as a commodity just as you would any other good. Any economist would agree that setting a price for a good or service is a bad idea, but for whatever reason, mainstream economists (Keynesians) believe that money is exempt from the disastrous effects of price fixing. As a quick refresher why price fixing is never a desirable policy let’s take a look at the classic example of rent control. Let’s say the average cost of an apartment in your city/town is $1000. Your politicians say that this is outrageous and make a sweeping policy saying that no apartment can be priced above $100. Suddenly the supply for housing cannot come close to matching the demand at this price. Landlords no longer care about the upkeep of the apartment because even if the apartment turns into a shithole, someone will still take it for $100. People no longer have incentives to build new housing or renovate existing housing because they can no longer charge a market rate. The end result is a city in ruins. Try your logic at why price fixing doesn’t work with any good. The market is distorted. Supply and demand are unable to reach equilibrium and everybody loses. The price of money is the interest rate. When the Federal Reserve engages in interest rate targeting, this is price setting. The Fed will say that the cost of money is too high! We need to get more money into the hands of more people to stimulate the economy, so let’s set the price of money to zero. Take a minute to think about what this means. In a free market the interest rate is established by the supply of money (savings) and the demand for money (borrowing). The interest rate can never be zero. It can only approach zero if the supply (savings) is reaching infinity and/or the demand (borrowers) for money is reaching zero. When the Fed fixes the price of money, it is sending a false market signal across the whole economy about how much money is saved to properly be used for investment. This is where irrational economic behavior occurs on a macroeconomic scale. Strictly speaking, individuals are operating rationally. If the price of money is zero, it is only rational to borrow money and not save your money. The problem is not the individual but rather the Central Bank has distorted the reality of the most important commodity of them all, money itself. What are the consequences of setting the price of money so low? Think about how this affects borrowers. The economy is operating under the assumption that there are more savings available for investment then there actually are. This leads to malinvestments. Imagine your buddy says he has a million dollars saved and would be happy to lend you this money free of interest. Maybe you’d build a fancy new house or put down a lot of capital to start a business. Then halfway through building your house, your buddy says, sorry, I only had $100,000, not a million. You began building something you should never have started building had you previously known how much money was actually available. You have to scrap your project and you end up with a worthless half built project. How does this affect savers? Imagine if I had a million dollars in my savings account. With the interest rate so low, I’m being given very strong signals to not keep that money in the bank to be loaned out. If the price of money is zero, why in the world would I want to sell (loan) my money for no profit? You wouldn’t. Your money is losing value everyday it sits in the bank account because the Fed is pumping out more money and giving it to banks to keep the interest rate at zero. You need to buy something with that money. You end up buying a house, stocks or whatever commodity you think will increase in price because you don’t want to see the value of your cash inflated away. As investments are undertaken that should never have been started and commodities are purchased that should never have been purchased, asset prices rise and we see bubbles forming all over the economic landscape. By messing with price of money the whole economy has become infected. And unfortunately at this stage, there is no cure. We are in too deep. The financial system will implode and the dollar will collapse. Please protect yourself and buy bitcoin.
When you go out into Internet space to look for some information on the crypto world, you may end up being confused and baffled. Suddenly, everyone’s an expert and each has something to say about it. Without a basic knowledge of the technology, your lack of knowledge may backfire on you one day if you get into the clingy paws of ICO internet scammers, so before you invest, it is important to learn some of the basics and fundamentals. by StealthEX Here is a heap of cryptocurrency books we recommend you to read to nurture your crypto side of the brain:
Digital Gold by Nathaniel Popper
In his shortlisted for the 2015 Financial Times and McKinsey business book of the year, Popper tells us the story of bitcoin since its early days. He tells the story through the eyes of famous and bright crypto influencers including South American and Asian millionaires, the Winklevoss twins and the legendary Satoshi Nakamoto. The author compares the digital currency to gold, claiming cryptocurrency to be the new global standard of storing the value. Some readers say that Digital Gold book is a ready material for a thriller – unexpected plot twists, powerful influential organizations, drugs, blackmail make up the fascinating story to read and a really good starting point to understand what Bitcoin and Blockchain Technology is. The only downside that it only takes you up to 2015 but don’t worry, those were jam-packed years of growing.
The Internet of Money by Andreas Antonopoulos
Even though Andreas Antonopoulos is one of the world’s foremost bitcoin and blockchain experts, he has a unique talent to simply explain complicated materials herewith maintaining the significance of the topic. For readers who want to explore more theory, The Internet of Money book is actually a collection of talks given by technology-enthusiast Andreas Antonopoulos, where he surpasses all the technical “geeky” details. In each section he delivers complex discussions in average words, exploring the economic, political, social and philosophical sides of the technology that has forever affected our world. By the way, the book was released in 3-volume series so you won’t miss out on any trivia.
The Little Bitcoin Book: Why Bitcoin Matters for Your Freedom, Finances, and Future by Alejandro Machado, Jimmy Song, Alena Vranova, Timi Ajiboye, Luis Buenaventura, Lily Liu, Alexander Lloyd, Alex Gladstein
Why does the price keep changing? Is Bitcoin worth investing my money into? How does it even have value? Why do people keep saying that it is the future of currency? The answers to all these questions you are going to find out in this book written by 8 experienced crypto experts. They finished it in just four days and they did well in accumulating their knowledge in a book format along with covering a lot of different questions and concerns around the digital currency. The book also explains how Bitcoin affects people’s freedom and opportunities. Also, there is a Q & A section with some of the most frequently asked questions about Bitcoin.
Cryptoassets: The Innovative Investor’s Guide to Bitcoin and Beyond by Chris Burniske & Jack Tatar
The book provides a useful framework on some popular cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum, Ripple, etc. and also explains why and how to invest and what would be the best thing to invest into. The authors make a major focus on investment strategies that really work, and teach you on fundamental notions like volume, liquidity and volatility of crypto coins. The authors use infographics, equations, historical data and statistics to teach you about crypto assets and markets. This crypto book is as suitable for the beginners as for the advanced investors. It’s written in a straight forward style and will probably serve as a good reference for the future.
Mastering Bitcoin: Programming the Open Blockchain by Andreas M. Antonopoulos
Another Andreas Antonopoulos book but at this time an intermediate level. If you want a technical explanation, with code samples – get this book, Mastering Bitcoin is for people who already have a programming or computer science background. Well-delivered, useful and enlightening – the book takes you through the intricate world of bitcoin, providing the knowledge you need to participate in the internet of money. Whether you’re a software developer, startup investor, or simply curious about the technology, this edition is definitely worth your attention!
The Bitcoin Standard: The Decentralized Alternative to Central Banking by Saifedean Ammous
This is a book written by a world-class economist Saifedean Ammous, where he explains how money works, why some money works better than the others and how monetary systems evolved throughout history – from ancient times to our days. Some people call it an eye-opening book, which would make you overthink the concept of money in general. Anyway, the book certainly is thought-provoking and it might induce you to dive deeper into the crypto world. The author doesn’t try to predict the future of money but to widen our horizon, to understand the problem of our economic system, and see the possibility of having a decentralized alternative to central banking.
The Book Of Satoshi: The Collected Writings of Bitcoin Creator Satoshi Nakamoto by Phil Champagne
Have you ever wondered who stands behind the whole crypto industry? Who made it all possible? The fun thing is that nobody knows. All we know is the name – Satoshi Nakamoto. In his book, Champagne dives deeper into his mysterious personality and investigates who Nakamoto might be, whether it is one person or a group, and how it was possible for Nakamoto to create the game-changing Bitcoin while remaining completely anonymous. The book includes actual emails and internet posts by Nakamoto, presented in chronological order. Fine resource for anyone interested in Bitcoin, it gives insight into Satoshi’s thinking, and readers can look at Bitcoin from a whole new perspective! And speaking of Bitcoin, if you need to exchange your BTC and many other coins, StealthEX is here for you. We provide a selection of more than 250 cryptocurrencies and constantly updating the list so that our customers will find a suitable option. Our service does not require registration and allows you to remain anonymous. Why don’t you check it out? Just go to StealthEX and follow these easy steps: ✔ Choose the pair and the amount for your exchange. For example ETH to BTC. ✔ Press the “Start exchange” button. ✔ Provide the recipient address to which the coins will be transferred. ✔ Move your cryptocurrency for the exchange. ✔ Receive your coins. Follow us on Medium, Twitter, Facebook, and Reddit to get StealthEX.io updates and the latest news about the crypto world. For all requests message us via [email protected]. The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision. Original article was posted onhttps://stealthex.io/blog/2020/09/01/cryptocurrency-books-you-must-read/
edit - I came up with a far better title: Why I YOLO on LLOY I have held my Vanguard for three years and since then had read a few books (albeit badly) that inspired me to take some risks: Armchair economist, Freakonomics, Thinking Fast Thinking Slow, 80/20 Principle, Algebra of Happiness, Smarter Investing, somewhat through Intelligent Investor but it's a slow read. I had never experienced picking individuals and foolishly it was something which I wanted badly enough to open with AJBell this FY. Tbh I regret it so if you're already happy with your Vanguard offerings then I can't say I'm happy to own individual picks now. Hopefully I'll get onto the psychology of why later. So why did I pick LLOY? I'm not going to say that I'm ecstatic about it. It was painful to push the button on it. I am extremely bearish (in life not just investing!), this comes from being a millennial, and I am certain that there is a government/company waiting just around the corner to overcharge me for goods and services. I did do some quick maths from the tiny fraction my pea brain gleamed from Intelligent Investor: Assets - 1065.871bn Liabilities - 1000.070bn Long Term Debt - 143.312bn 1065.871 - (1000.070 + 143.312) = 1065.871 - 1143.382 = -77.511 Lloyds really doesn’t appear to be a good buy. But I did so anyway… Somewhat probably from thing's I've not fully understood from Intelligent Investor! Banks are out of favour. They have been out of fashion as long as I can remember.
The financial crisis. The government bailout, which when you look at it now has Barclays comment of 'never took a Govt. bailout' isn't as good after learning that LLOY bought HBOS after being strong-armed by the Govt. for them to learn that there was some weird accounting going on.
PPI Scandal - no idea how this got so out of control. It was an amazingly American style campaign that went on as far as reclaiming it went. It very much reminded me of when I was a child and would forever see compo ads on the telly.
The FinTech new banks. I have nothing bad to say about this bunch I love them, they are doing the lords work. The industry definitely needs shaking up, I remember the days where my banking app mandated a different keyboard from my Android phone for security purposes, fantastic way to 1. freak people out and 2. ruin the usability of your application. The innovation of usability and access which these FinTech's bring is fantastic. But I'm not going to take a loan out with them, my parents aren't going to be able to take a mortgage out with them, and my parents definitely won't get an account over and above their brick banks. When switching becomes even more effortless nobody will probably be with the same bank for more than a year.
Go on why did you buy it despite all this then? Intelligent Investors advice when looking for value is to find companies which are out of fashion but still adequately ran (probably a better word there for adequately). This isn't the 2008 financial crisis - we aren't in this mess because the Banks released a deadly virus. But that doesn’t mean that LLOY wasn't heading for failure before this. The stock was performing badly before this storm. The profits we're lower than expected but they had the PPI bill to pay. The bank is led by António Horta-Osório - he has led the bank since 2011, nearly 10 years of service. He even took time off for his mental health before it was cool to do so! They're even reducing their emissions by 50% by 2020. Forget Elon, this guy is as fellow kids as they come. I'm not worried about the FinTech's yet. I have a few fintech accounts and they're great. I rolled out my joint account in a few clicks. I use it for all my spending. One thing which I think the FinTechs will do better with is getting extremely rich data on their customers spending habits and will therefore be able to sell this to aggregators for a higher price. LLOY have a £3bn digital transformation project which should be completing next year, we'll have to see what they have come up with. (you can tell I started to give up here) LLOY is the leader in the Mortgage market. They even have the Tesco portfolio! Should the country not be able to afford their mortgage bill, I just can't see the government letting it all go. They helped fund this BTL nation through their mortgage interest write offs at the time when rental yields were far higher and so were interest rates! There won't be anyone around to buy the repossessions, all the elderly are dead from Corona, and the youth don’t have any money to buy the houses. I don't think prices can go down to the point at which GenX/Mil can pay for them regardless. The next Govt. handout I can see is an enforced mortgage readjustment by the Govt. to the lenders for as long as borrowers need. There is probably far more which might back this up, but that doesn’t matter because the answer is that this was a risky buy, I have no doubt there is 10 fold more rationale behind not buying this. Just look at the guy the other day who was selling his WH, 200% what a lucky sole, their website was absolute garbage in a time when everyone is betting online! Anyway finally, the psychology behind why I should have stayed with VG. There are no purchase fees! When I buy through AJ and I see that there is a £10 dealing fee I feel a loss. This is mentioned heavily in investment books but I want to talk about the psychology behind it. In Thinking Fast Thinking Slow there is lots of talk about how we as humans react to loss, there are lots of studies mentioned in the book and it is fascinating. The essential take-home point here is that we as humans see loss completely different to gains. You can feel ecstatic finding £5 on the floor but feel a huge sense of dread when a scooter taxi rips you off by £5 in Vietnam and you think about it for the rest of your life! If you can gleam one thing from the Bitcoin culture its HODL!
Reacting to the recent disappointing performance by Bitcoin in the crypto market, Prof Steve Hanke, American economist and prof at the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, noted on Twitter that Bitcoin should not be confused as a means of legal tender because it is very speculative in nature. https://preview.redd.it/oq1jdrjnyz651.png?width=598&format=png&auto=webp&s=fb0b16134832ad34be1022f2b990dddf1ee2040d This is not the first time an influential figure is criticizing Bitcoin, as far back as 2019, Economist Nouriel Roubini said that he would gladly take the dollar over Bitcoin because he does not believe that it is a real store of value. Giving his take on Bitcoin, the Economist said,
"Maybe Bitcoin is a partial store of value but it’s not a unit of account, it’s not a means of payment, it’s not scalable [...] despite its rally earlier this year, it’s lost 60% in value since its peak, so I don’t see it going anywhere frankly."
Buttressing the point of Roubini, Billionaire, Warren buffet claims that Bitcoin is an illusion because it holds no real store of value.
“If you do something phony by going out and selling yo-yos or something, there’s no money in it — but when you get into Wall Street, there’s huge money," the billionaire said.
Bitcoin Stuck in Negative Zone After Failing to Make Resistance Break Talking about the recent disappointing performance of the coin, investor and analyst at Panda, Edward Moya said; “Bitcoin continues to consolidate in what many crypto fans are calling the typical accumulation phase that occurs after a halving event. The coin has struggled “despite an overall resilient appetite for risky assets."
Stocks are set to end the week on a high note after four of the biggest tech stocks - Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL) - reported quarterly results that beat high expectations. Apple easily exceeded estimates on the top and bottom lines, and announced a four-for-one stock split, sending shares past the $400 threshold in after-hours trading. Amazon's sales soared, and operating income nearly doubled compared with the big drop analysts had expected. Facebook posted 11% revenue growth and issued stronger-than-expected sales guidance for the current quarter. Results from Google's parent were a bit murkier, showing the company's first-ever year-over-year decline in advertising revenue, but sales from its cloud-computing segment came in well above expectations. Big Tech has been Wall Street's mainstay this year, and the latest quarterly results look to accelerate that trend. Amazon and Apple are up 65% and 31%, respectively, in 2020, while Facebook and Alphabet each have gained more than 14% over the period. With all four stocks moving higher in after-hours trading, the tech titans likely will add more than $200 billion to their combined market value. U.S. economy shrank by a third in Q2 The Commerce Department said U.S. gross domestic product collapsed at a 32.9% annualized rate in the second quarter, the steepest decline since the government started keeping records in 1947, as COVID-19 crushed consumer and business spending. Meanwhile, in a sign of a faltering jobs market, the number of workers applying for initial unemployment benefits rose for the second straight week, to 1.43 million, after nearly four months of decreases following a late-March peak. The Q2 economic contraction came as states imposed lockdowns in March and April to contain the coronavirus and then lifted restrictions in May and June, allowing growth to resume. Economists expect the third quarter to show growth, but the summer rise in infections likely will temper gains. Senate fails to advance jobless benefits extension Meanwhile, no signs of progress are evident in talks between Republicans and Democrats over a new coronavirus relief bill. The U.S. Senate failed yesterday to advance an effort to extend a $200 per week supplement to unemployment insurance benefits. Senate Republicans and the White House had sought to cut the supplement from $600 through September, after which those collecting unemployment benefits would get 70% of their previous wages when combined with state benefits. While much of the focus has been on the expiration of the additional $600-per-week of unemployment benefits, an eviction moratorium is receiving increasing attention as well. China factory activity expands for fifth straight month China’s official manufacturing purchasing managers' index came in better than expected, rising to 51.1 in July from 50.9 in June for its highest reading since March. July marked the fifth consecutive month that the closely watched measure of China's factory activity topped the 50 mark that separates expansion from contraction. Combined with China's official non-manufacturing purchasing managers' index, which indicated a slight deceleration in the service sector, the data suggests China's factories have returned to pre-coronavirus levels but consumer demand remains much weaker, which means inventory is piling up. Chinese-backed hackers reportedly targeted Moderna for vaccine data China rejects charges that hackers linked to its government targeted Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) to steal data related to research on a coronavirus vaccine. Citing an unnamed U.S. security official, Reuters reported yesterday that Chinese hackers targeted the U.S. biotech firm earlier this year. Moderna said it had been in contact with the FBI and was made aware of the suspected "information reconnaissance activities" by a hacking group mentioned in last week's Justice Department indictment, where two Chinese nationals were accused of spying on the U.S., including three unnamed U.S.-based targets involved in medical research to fight COVID-19. The two other unnamed medical research companies mentioned in the Justice Department indictment are described as biotech companies based in California and Maryland - descriptions that could fit Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD) and Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX). Go deeper: J&J (NYSE:JNJ) COVID-19 vaccine candidate shows positive effect in primate study. Amazon's $10 billion Internet satellite plan wins FCC approval While overshadowed by the company's earnings, Amazon.com's (AMZN) tech ambitions got a boost as the FCC approved its $10B plan to put thousands of satellites in the sky to provide high-speed Internet to unserved and underserved areas. The company's Project Kuiper - using 3,200 low Earth orbit satellites - would compete in that area with the Starlink project at SpaceX (SPACE). Australia to force Google, Facebook to pay for news Australia will become the first country in the world to force Facebook (FB) and Google (GOOG, GOOGL) to pay publishers for the news content featured on its sites. It will give the companies three months to negotiate fair pay with media businesses there, a move to ensure competition and consumer protection as well as a sustainable media landscape. Other companies are likely to be targeted for similar moves by Australia's government later. U.K. fraud office charges Airbus subsidiary over Saudi deal The U.K.'s major economic crimes investigator has charged Airbus' (OTCPK:EADSY) subsidiary GPT Special Project Management and three individuals in connection with a defense contract the country arranged with Saudi Arabia. Airbus says the Serious Fraud Office's investigation related to contractual arrangements that predated its acquisition of the subsidiary. The charges represent a step forward in one of the SFO's most politically sensitive probes, which has been viewed as a potential threat to the U.K.'s relationship with the Saudis. Go deeper: Airbus works to slow cash burn, puts brakes on production. What else is happening... Walmart (NYSE:WMT) memo points to cutting jobs in 'streamlining.' Facebook (FB) finally securing rights to show music videos. Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) account breach involved phone-based phishing attacks on employees. Thursday's Key Earnings Apple (AAPL) +6.3% PM on strong earnings, stock split. Amazon (AMZN) +5.5% PM on strong Q2 earnings, Q3 guidance. Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG) flat PM after soft ad revenue. Facebook (FB) +5.9 PM on strong earnings, user growth. Ford Motor (NYSE:F) +2.5% PM despite seeing weak FY demand. Gilead Sciences (GILD) -3.6% PM as pandemic disrupts earnings. US Steel (NYSE:X) flat PM after Q2 loss, upbeat Q3 guidance. Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) flat PM after Q2 beat, better-than-expected FY guidance. LTC Properties (NYSE:LTC) -3.2% AH as Q2 rental revenue takes a hit. Xilinx (NASDAQ:XLNX) -2.7% PM on in-line Q2, outlook. Stryker (NYSE:SYK) -2.8% AH despite Q2 beat. Vertex Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:VRTX) +1% AH on robust Q2 Trikafta sales. OPKO Health (NASDAQ:OPK) -6% PM after healthy Q2 earnings. Atlassian (NASDAQ:TEAM) -7% PM on FQ4 customer weakness, downside EPS forecast. Exact Sciences (NASDAQ:EXAS) -3% AH on pandemic disrupting Q2 revenue. Expedia (NASDAQ:EXPE) -6% PM after massive Q2 bookings dip. Seattle Genetics (NASDAQ:SGEN) -2% AH despite Q2 beat. Cabot Oil & Gas (NYSE:COG) flat PM after Q2 beat, unchanged guidance. XPO Logistics (NYSE:XPO) -4% AH on weak Q2 shipping metrics. Shake Shack (NYSE:SHAK) -4.8% AH on Q2 miss, pulled Q3 guidance. Today's Markets In Asia, Japan -2.82%. Hong Kong -0.47%. China +0.71%. India -0.26%. In Europe, at midday, London -0.17%. Paris +0.01%. Frankfurt +0.27%. Futures at 6:20, Dow +0.13%. S&P +0.19%. Nasdaq +0.84%. Crude +0.45% to $40.05. Gold +1.48% to $1,995.90. Bitcoin +1.83% to $11,161. Ten-year Treasury Yield -1.3 bps to 0.53% Today's Economic Calendar 8:30 Personal Income and Outlays 8:30 Employment Cost Index 9:45 Chicago PMI 10:00 Consumer Sentiment 1:00 PM Baker-Hughes Rig Count 3:00 PM Farm Prices
First, equities: Expected earnings are down across the board, presumably by a whopping quantity. A number of weeks ago, within the U.S. and Europe, business was humming along, albeit with trepidation. Currently, bars and restaurants are closed in many population centers, events are cancelled, outlets are shut, planes are grounded…. The list of sectors impacted by the required virus precautions is long and alarming. https://preview.redd.it/70gmkkotxdf51.jpg?width=730&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=23390e052c04b6bbb5309af4b52422963edb3192 Next, government bonds: If there’s one issue the bond market hates, it’s inflation. The unwinding of globalization as a results of constricting offer chains can push up manufacturing costs which will feed through to costs. Liberally sprinkle cash round the system within the hopes of stimulating spending, in an exceedingly provide crisis, and you add to the inflationary pressure. Nominal yields on public debt are at traditionally low levels; inflation can push even additional real yields into negative territory. As for company bonds, the sharp drop in earnings not to mention increasing costs might trigger a wave of defaults. What about gold? The traditional shelter can in all probability do well within the medium term as investors bear in mind its anti-inflationary properties. Gold traditionally outperforms in low-rate environments – no shortage of those these days. Plus, its lack of income makes it less prone to drops in economic activity. And then there’s Bitcoin storm. Its high volatility makes it unsuitable for several investors. However those who think gold makes sense in this world gone mad are presumably going to take a closer look, particularly once the perspective-changing storm we’ve simply weathered (with in all probability a lot of to come back). Even those skeptical of gold’s place in an exceedingly diversified portfolio are sure to be curious about a digital alternative that solves for a number of the metal’s weak points while revealing relationships with the broader economy that no other asset has Last week I wrote concerning how it’s not a secure haven. Here’s the issue: it doesn’t want to be. See additionally: As This Crisis Worsens, Bitcoin storm Will Become a secure Haven Once more For those worried regarding inflation, Bitcoin storm is even additional resistant than gold. Its laborious cap and pre-programmed provide are resistant to fluctuations in value. A sharp jump in the price of gold, but, is possible to bring a lot of offer onto the market as production ramps up, and could even impact the estimated provide limit as various mining ways become profitable. https://preview.redd.it/3usx9o3wxdf51.jpg?width=474&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=1f5ede5e81d642b6bc33c76fb5e617d987bf6219 For those worried concerning a pointy economic slump, Bitcoin storm is practically the sole asset indirectly impacted by macroeconomics. There’s no income to chop and no offer chains to hinder access. External factors like energy prices and supply chains will impact miner economics, but Bitcoin storm itself adjusts for shifts in the upkeep of its network. When miners close down, Bitcoin storm becomes chper to mine, that eventually makes the enterprise profitable again. What makes Bitcoin storm even more of a distinctive asset class is it can be indirectly impacted by macroeconomics, in a very huge approach. The impact will come from many vectors, however particularly loose monetary policy, the currency markets, emerging economies and populist tendencie 1) Loose monetary policy: With central banks around the planet hitting the markets with no matter they'll, cash offer constraints have been thrown out the window. As this crisis unfolds, the number of money that can enter the system to help out not only markets but additionally voters and firms can dwarf what we tend to saw in 2008. Back then, the markets were threatening to drive the economy into a wall, therefore reassuring them was paramount. Currently the threat to the economy is driving markets into the wall. The usual ways that assuage market panics aren’t visiting stimulate demand that's reeling from mandated shutdowns, job losses and generalized worry. Printing cash may maybe facilitate if it really gets into the hands of the consumers, but that can produce inflationary pressure in an economy with no tools left to fight it. The usual anti-inflation weapon is raising interest rates – but doing that during a heavily indebted surroundings might trigger waves of company and even sovereign defaults. Growing inflationary pressures and steady currency debasement will presumably increase interest in disinflationary assets like Bitcoin storm and gold which will additionally be used for payment in some circumstances. a pair of) Currency markets: Investors around the globe are fleeing into bucks, pushing up its worth relative to different currencies. This might facilitate the U.S. client by making imports cheaper, if imports weren’t disrupted by provide chain constrictions. But with a stronger dollar, U.S. producing can become uncompetitive, and foreign holders of greenback-denominated debt might get pushed into default. Other countries’ import and debt service prices can skyrocket, weakening their currencies and pushing up the dollar even more. The ballooning demand for greenbacks could lead to a currency liquidity crunch – the swap lines extended to foreign central banks in last Sunday’s Fed intervention were expanded even any on Thursday, a worrying sign that the initial live wasn’t enough to alleviate the strain on the FX markets. See Conjointly: Into the Unknown: No Limit on Fed Cash Injections Calls are growing for concerted action the same as the 1985 Plaza Accord, however getting economic powers to follow the lead of an “America 1st” government whose leader based mostly a lot of of his campaign on guarantees of a wall is going to be a a lot of tougher challenge than within the post-stagflation desperation of the late twentieth century. With fractures in the world currency order turning into increasingly apparent, economists and investors can be asking what the next monetary order can seem like. Bitcoin storm could or might not be part of that resolution however it's a brand new tool in the box. three) Rising economies: The sharp escalation of greenback-based mostly costs, combined with a demand crunch, may push non-greenback economies into recession, that is seemingly to steer to social unrest. In some elements of the planet, this might be met with swift retaliation or even regime modification. The confiscatory bias of political parties navigating an influence struggle could intensify interest during a liquid and semi-non-public store of worth. 4) Populist tendencies: Whereas a lot of established democracies will deal with recessions and social unrest through negotiations and trade-offs, even they could veer towards populist tendencies. These will most likely take the shape of extra support for overwrought health systems, also for voters and companies hit hard by mandated shutdowns and resulting slump in demand. https://www.cryptoerapro.com/bitcoin-storm/ https://preview.redd.it/i75a7muzxdf51.jpg?width=770&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=16f5d531ac24d9c71d249f734a8b5b4dd703ea6f
Hello, Bombinos. First of all, huge thanks to all the team, mods and people working on the project. I'm writing some suggestions aiming to organize and grow our community and increase awareness about the project. It's divided in three specific topics related to strategy, communities and marketing. But first, I'll suggest some aesthetic changes in this subreddit to make it look more friendly. A) The font color in the topic on the front page is too dark in my desktop screen. The background is black and the font is dark gray, making it almost unreadable. It has to be changed to a lighter tone. B) The text on the sidebar is incomplete. I made some alterations in the new text below. "Bomb, the original and first deflationary currency experiment, was born after an airdrop in the end of 2018 aiming to answer one simple question: Can a deflationary cryptocurrency work as a store of value? The Bomb currency works by destroying 1% from every transaction recorded in the Ethereum blockchain. Only 1,000,000 tokens were minted. There will never be newly minted tokens." C) The sidebar should include a price ticker similar to the one used in the Telegram group and include our etherscan address. D) The sidebar should also include links to the Telegram and other communities. 1- Strategy: A) First deflationary currency and importance of the Bomb Token against governments printing money. The economist Friedrich Hayek from the Austrian school, in his acceptance speech titled "The Pretense of Knowledge" at the Swedish Nobel Academy, emphasized the importance of letting the economy free of government interference, specifically in the case of a continuous injection of additional amounts of money at points of the economic system where it creates a temporary demand, which generates a future imbalance after the artificial demand ceases. We are seeing this today with the interference of governments on the economies after the coronavirus. Trillions of dollars are being given to companies that don't have any idea how the consumers will react when the economies restart. The irrationality of the human behavior must be considered in this case, because there's no scientific theory to guarantee how the people will react after the restrictions are over. With all this new money on the market, we are risking a long term inflation that devalues national currencies like we have never seen before. That's where a deflationary currency becomes important as a hedge against this anomaly created in the market and this enormous sum of new money. B) Increasing the network effect to protect the asset To have a chance against its competitors, Bomb must protect its network against copycats and bad actors. The best way to do this is to increase the number of holders and, subsequently, wallets, to squash the power of any holder to manipulate the price and even crash it. We have to protect our network the same way Bitcoin did, increasing the number of financially interested people to a point where it's not productive to manipulate the price. Bomb has another quality that makes it prone to manipulation and volatility. One person (or entity) holding a lot of tokens can game the system using an exchange that runs off-chain transactions to crash the price. We are seeing this today. The transactions are happening but there's no burn and the price keeps going down. The only way to protect against this kind of bad actor is to increase the network effect and spread the tokens to a lot more holders, people interested in defending the currency. C) Increase the total holders and wallets to improve liquidity in exchanges and awareness Increasing the total number of holders would reduce the capacity of bad actors to wash trade. More people interested means more transactions, more transactions generate smaller spreads. Smaller spreads make it harder for bad actors to manipulate the price through wash trading. D) Evaluate new listings or removing old ones Yes, we need at least on more good exchange like Kraken. We should first wait for more holders before going after new listings. And we should look forward removing Bomb from bad exchanges. 2- Communities: A) Focus decisions on Reddit and Telegram (only three communities: news, price discussion and Bombassadors) and sharing everything published on Facebook and Twitter. Voting and decisions should be centralized in only one place. We can share the discussions everywhere else, but the voting and decisions must be centralized to one platform. B) Elect mods to these communities to increase decentralization I don't know how the Bombassadors program work, but we need to keep the current mods and choose new ones to run things more smoothly. Reddit and Telegram take a lot of time and we absolutely need more people. 3- Marketing: A) Use the small war chest wisely because Bomb is deflationary and becomes more and more scarce by the minute. We have to extended the war chest as long as we can to reach a more valuable network. Any marketing campaign must consider the increase in the network effect. We should focus on campaigns that attract outside interest. Example: each 15 days somebody could be rewarded with 50 bombs for an article shared on Reddit, Twiter, Facebook and 4chan. The prize must be voted and awarded to the best article that was shared, not only published. Articles or content that eventually reach a lot of engagement could be awarded outside of this prize with 100 bombs, discretionarily, by the mods. B) Use the funds only in campaigns that bring new people to the project instead of distributing it in the existing community to produce meaningless burns. Again. Burning will not increase the network value. After meaningless burns we will have the same number of interested people, but less tokens on the market. This way Bomb will never reach the store of value status. C) Reward people that generate quality content (like Pedro's 3D printed bombinos) and people that share this quality content and generate a lot of awareness. D) All campaigns must answer positively the question: Does this increase the network effect and represents quality content? E) Kill proposals that value meaningless token burns to create pumps. F) Don't forget to have fun! Good memes could be rewarded every 15 days, after voting, with 20 bombs. Suggestions are welcome. Let's find some common ground and move forward. And thanks for reading!
Central Bank Digital Currencies: A Threat Or A Blessing?
Central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) have been in the rumors since 2013, with China allegedly developing in secrecy a government-issued centralized cryptocurrency to fight off increasingly popular Bitcoin. But it wasn’t until September 2015 when the Bank of England had publicly discussed for the first time the use of a blockchain-based central bank currency as a way to implement negative interest rates, and March 2016 when the phrase “central bank digital currency” had been coined. by StealthEX To be sure, CBDCs have been a scarecrow for the cryptocurrency community for quite some time now. But how real is the danger? And couldn’t it in fact turn out to be a blessing in disguise for Bitcoin and its brothers in arms over the long haul? A sober look into the reality of CBDCs and their seemingly brewing stand-off with cryptocurrencies is due and invited. A New Twist on an Old Tune As soon as CBDCs started to make headlines across major news outlets in 2019, a new wave of soothsayers has risen. This time, Bitcoin skeptics and haters alike have gotten something looking solid on the surface. CBDCs came in handy to scare the cryptocurrency public into fear and depression for being touted as an ultimate weapon that would destroy Bitcoin. Aside from the regular fear mongering that has been following cryptocurrencies through years, there are a few apparently rational considerations that could, at least in theory, herald the autumn of cryptocurrencies. As it happened, the first proposals on CBDCs were in fact inspired by Bitcoin and the idea of a distributed digital ledger underpinning it. Moreover, they were actually suggesting the use of blockchain technology in one way or another. Today, this is no longer the case, and the concept of a digital fiat currency as it presently stands has little to do with blockchain. But how much would then a CBDC be different from conventional fiat which is already digital almost everywhere but in a few exceptionally backward countries? A number of mainstream economists try to address this issue, with Nouriel Roubini, a professor of economics at New York University and former senior adviser to the White House council of economic advisers and the US Treasury, leading the assault on Bitcoin. He goes as far as to claim that CBDCs are going to replace most private digital payment systems like PayPal and its likes by allowing anyone to transact directly through the central bank. That would reduce the need for cash and make traditional bank accounts along with digital payment services obsolete and unnecessary. In his view, cryptocurrencies are no more than a pile of overhyped blockchain technologies promoted by a bunch of “starry-eyed crypto-fanatics”. Roubini reasons that once CBDCs arrive, they would instantly displace cryptocurrencies, which, as he senses them, are far from scalable, cheap, and secure, nor they are actually decentralised and anonymous according to him. Whether his prophecy of an impending doom for crypto has any real ground remains a matter of scrutiny, which takes us to the next part of this essay. Much Ado about Nothing The argument in favor of CBDCs taking over cryptocurrencies is essentially based on misunderstanding Bitcoin’s primary value proposition. Although the advantages and benefits of CBDCs may be real, to a varying degree, the idea of a central bank digital currency doesn’t part ways with the original idea of fiat money itself. In other words, CBDCs will always remain a somewhat enhanced or updated version of fiat. As such, every major flaw or fault that fiat has ever revealed can be rightfully ascribed to this form of a centrally-controlled currency. Most importantly, CBDCs don’t seek to address the arbitrariness of their governing bodies, that is to say, central banks, in the majority of cases. Whatever has been said positive toward CBDCs can be reversed through the misuse and abuse by the monetary authorities. It is just a matter of time till they start turning advantages of CBDCs into disadvantages as has always been the case in the past, but now more efficiently and with a vengeance. And this is in stark contrast to Bitcoin which sets forth a distinctively different governance model by removing any central authority from the equation. This point has been reiterated and emphasized by many notable and well-known figures in the cryptoverse. For example, Barry Silbert, the founder of venture capital firm Digital Currency Group and a major investor in the blockchain space, strongly believes that central banks won’t be capping the supply of CBDCs because they “love to print money”. In this manner, CBDCs aren’t going to fix broken monetary policies carried out by most, if not all, central banks. Then we are instantly back to square one. And that comes down to a simple but time-proven truth that fiat currencies, no matter what form they may take, are set to depreciate and lose value over time. There is no way around this, and CBDCs will be of little help here, if ever. On the other hand, these currencies allow central bankers to gain more power over financial activities of the general public by requiring common people to use the financial system based on a CBDC, and, by extension, subjecting them to other forms of control in their efforts to maintain state supremacy over money – in addition to its costs and restrictions. Put shortly, digital currencies issued by central authorities cannot on their own pose a real threat to Bitcoin and undermine its value proposition coming from its decentralized nature and capped supply, especially in the long term. But could it play out in an altogether different direction? Could CBDCs actually help, in some convoluted or even controversial way, non-central bank currencies such as Bitcoin, and contribute to their mainstream adoption and wider acceptance? As it turns out, it is not totally impossible, and this might be the most interesting piece of the CBDC puzzle. A Blessing in Disguise Now that we established that CBDCs are unlikely to hurt Bitcoin, it is time to explore the opportunities they could offer the crypto space. Barry Silbert says that the efficient and cost-effective infrastructure every financial institution will have to build in order to safely store and support CBDCs happens to be the same infrastructure that could be used to transact with and provide support to cryptocurrencies. Consequently, Bitcoin will benefit in the long run from the world’s central bankers issuing their own digital currencies – when these currencies start to fail at the end of the day, which is inevitable with any form of fiat money as many economists claim. At a fundamental level, CBDCs, if they kick off for real, are set to compete not so much with Bitcoin and the rest of the pack but rather with other central bank currencies, digital or otherwise. Whatever nation launches such a currency first, the others will quickly follow. You don’t exactly need a master’s degree in economics to understand who will benefit most from the dog-eat-dog fight that will without doubt ensue, just like fiat currencies benefit from cryptocurrencies competing with each other. And remember if you need to exchange your coins StealthEX is here for you. We provide a selection of more than 250 coins and constantly updating the list so that our customers will find a suitable option. Why don’t you check it out? Just go to StealthEX and follow these easy steps: ✔ Choose the pair and the amount for your exchange. For example ETH to BTC. ✔ Press the “Start exchange” button. ✔ Provide the recipient address to which the coins will be transferred. ✔ Move your cryptocurrency for the exchange. ✔ Receive your coins. Follow us on Medium, Twitter, Facebook, and Reddit to get StealthEX.io updates and the latest news about the crypto world. For all requests message us via [email protected]. The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision. Original article was posted onhttps://stealthex.io/blog/2020/07/21/central-bank-digital-currencies-a-threat-or-a-blessing/
r/MAINSTREETCRYPTO EXCLUSIVE: INTERVIEW WITH ROGER VER
MAINSTREETCRYPTOEXCLUSIVE: INTERVIEW WITH ROGER VER https://preview.redd.it/9rycme1mdgr41.jpg?width=200&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=30c55fb3ff8b3705726a04109797063a26798798 Roger Ver, is one of the five founders of the bitcoin foundation. You could say he was ahead of his time, buying $25,000 worth of bitcoin when they were merely $1 each. He was the first major investor to invest millions in Blockchain.info, Ripple, Kraken, and Bitpay among others. Now he wants Bitcoin Cash, a fork of the legacy chain, to be used as a global P2P currency, and says it can scale just like Satoshi first laid out in the original Bitcoin whitepaper.--------------------------------------------------------------Bitcoincash.orgRank: #5Current Price: $257.65Market Cap : $4,741,042,75924 hour trading volume : 1.741 Billion USD--------------------------------------------------------------Hi Roger, first and foremost, I wanted to thank you for taking the time to do this. You are truly a pioneer in the Bitcoin space, and all of us owe you a debt of gratitude. On behalf of all of us, I wanted to say thank you for advancing the space. 1. First, I want you to take a moment and appreciate how far bitcoin and cryptocurrency has come this past decade. Did you ever believe you would see such growth, interest, and adoption in such a short period of time or has it completely surprised you? We always over estimate the amount of progress that will be made in the short term, but underestimate the amount of progress that will be made in the long term. Crypto currency is another example of that. 2. At what point did it hit you that bitcoin was history in the making? From the very first day I knew it was one of the most important inventions in the history of humankind. The book Digital Gold goes over how I literally had to go to the emergency room because of the excitement I had for Bitcoin. 3. How did you first get into bitcoin, pre Bitinstant? I first heard about it on the FreeTalkLive.com radio show. A full history of the early years is covered well by Digital Gold. 4 .What economists and philosophers do you align with? I think Murray Rothbard fits into both categories and his thinking influenced mine more than any other single author. Others who have influenced me would include: Adam Smith Ludwig von Mises Milton Friedman David Friedman John Locke Henry Hazlitt Frederick Bastiat Larked Rose Ray Kurzweil 6. What has been your favorite moment in crypto history thus far? My favorite moments were reading the underlying philosophy behind the Silk Road. The government has done an amazing job distorting and smearing the underlying message behind the site. My eyes started to tear up when I read this post on the front page of the Silk Road for the fist time: https://www.reddit.com/Anarcho_Capitalism/comments/29diyt/defcons_latest_post_on_silk_road/?sort=top I never bought or sold a single thing there, but I spent countless enjoyable hours reading their forums and exploring the site. 7. What are your future plans for Bitcoin Cash? It isn’t just a hobby, it’s a global revolt. We will become money for the world. 8. Branding is so important. Bitcoin currently has greater brand recognition a la Coca-Cola, and is regarded by many as the “real” Bitcoin, even though this is widely disputed, especially by crypto-fundamentalists. Do you envision a Coca-Cola vs. Pepsi type scenario? Do you envision parity price-wise between the two on a long enough timeline? Bitcoin Cash has more utility than BTC, so in the long run it will have a larger market cap. Currently we are in the era when Myspace was bigger than Facebook, but Myspace’s servers were being over loaded and causing a bad user experience. Eventually people migrated to Facebook and eventually people will migrate away from BTC. 8. a) Have you ever thought of re-branding Bitcoin Cash? No one is in control to do such a thing by themselves. The community can’t even agree on orange vs green for the colors. 9. Bitcoin Cash has the potential to truly be used as a global form of payment rather than merely a store of value, what else excites you the most about the potential of Bitcoin Cash?
Payments for the world. That’s all we need. 10. I asked Adam Back the same question: If you could remove yourself from the equation, and remove bias, how would you objectively evaluate the pros and cons of Bitcoin Cash versus The Lightning Network? Anyone can permissionlessly start using BCH to start sending or receiving payments world wide in about 30 seconds. (The time it takes to download an app) It is accepted by more than 100,000 websites around the world, and has millions of users. Lightning Network would take about a full day to setup and get working permissionlessly, and would take several hundred dollars of additional computer hardware. Once it is setup, you can spend it at about 300 websites world wide, and it has maybe a few tens of thousands of users. 11. When you’re not working, what do you like to do for fun? Favorite hobbies? I enjoy reading, and Brazilian Jujitsu. I’m especially interested in doing more competitions before I get too old. 12. What are a few of your favorite books? What are some that have made a long lasting impact on you? (Can be fiction or nonfiction) I loved the Age of Spiritual Machines. It painted a picture of how exciting the world is going to be thanks to More’s Law. I also loved The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. I see crypto currency being a world life parallel. 13. What are you most excited about for the future of blockchain technology and where do you see the space in 5 years? I’m excited to see wide spread wallets with strong privacy, and more agorism starting to take place around the world. 14. What are your personal theories of who Satoshi was / were, what was their motivation, and do you think something like bitcoin would have inevitably been created eventually, had Satoshi never existed? I don’t know who Satoshi is or was, but it was clear they were trying to build a peer to peer electronic cash system, not what BTC has become today. It was an inevitability that someone would create something like Bitcoin eventually. People like David Friedman and others had been writing about it for decades in advance. 15. What advice would you give our viewers regarding blockchain, business, motivation, or life in general? Read more books. Reading a book like having a one on one tutoring session from the author. It’s the best way to learn directly from the greatest minds the human race has ever produced. BONUS: If you were a director and could make only one film out of all the wild stories regarding crypto, what subject matter would you choose and why? The Silk Road because it embodied the spirit of peer to peer cash and voluntaryism.
A REMINDER: The future and potential of Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Technology
Bitcoin and cryptocurrency solves myriad problems in traditional finance . It allows person to person transactions without a middleman. Many of these transactions have nominal fees, some have near zero fees. Cryptocurrency also allows anyone to become an investor , from all walks of life. In order to invest in traditional stocks there are numerous bottlenecks for everyday the man or woman . Cryptocurrency does not discriminate . It doesn’t care if you are rich or poor , or what country you are from. Everyone has a chance to invest in something they believe in and to make their situation better. In my humble opinion , within the next 10 years cryptocurrency will be used worldwide by more than 25% of people on a daily basis for transactions , day to day or online . I believe that in Asia in particular, cryptocurrencies will catch on and be used mainstream for transactions and micro transactions before the rest of the world. In the next several years, a handful of cryptocurrencies will become the Coca-Cola and Pepsi of the ecosystem and will dominate the landscape , but bitcoin will always be #1 due to it’s first-mover advantage, it’s security, and it’s history. It is the gold standard that all other coins will be measured in. Any nascent technology , that is exciting, has enormous potential , yet is widely misunderstood the market is going to be volatile. People are still determining its value . The media and huge powerful players that see the potential have a huge influence and incentive to make this market hyper volatile for a plethora of reasons. But, eventually, on a long enough timeline, I foresee, each satoshi being valued at 1 cent, which would mean 1 bitcoin is worth $1 million dollars. Whether, it is in 10 years, in 20 years, or more, I don’t know, but I truly believe at some point in our lifetimes this scenario is entirely possible. In fact, on a long enough timeline, (20–30 years) fiat money could potentially fall by the wayside, with globalization. Think of Records>8-tracks>tapes>CDs>MP3s> now streaming . You have smart cars , smart homes , smart phones , this is smart money . Although paper money would not be done away with completely and would still be accepted , this would simply be a glorified “update “ of our monetary system like an Apple iPhone update. With our current system how can you verify each dollar bill that is in your bank account and where it goes and if it’s really there? It’s just a number in your bank account due to our debt based banking system , one that can technically be erased , at any moment . Think about it, if stuff really hit the fan, whether it be a major financial crisis (even worse than now, like global banks failing), war (God forbid), or something else, which significantly rendered many fiat currencies worthless or at least destabilized them significantly, what would governments all over the world look to use as a replacement, whether temporary or not? Not gold, because it is an impractical means of transaction on a mass scale, is heavy, and is essentially indivisible in real time. No, they would use bitcoin, which is the de facto global currency of the twenty-first century. You can’t argue that it’s not, it’s quite obvious at this point. It is interesting to look at the front cover of The Economist from 1988, 20 years later, entitled "Get Ready for a World Currency". We are on the brink of something truly momentous. Most of the world still does not know the power of blockchain technology, and how it can change everything. Blockchain is the next phase of the technological revolution, and as we know with technology, once a superior more efficient system, product, or service is created, the world does not take a step back. We advance. Blockchain technology is here to stay and it’s not going anywhere, in fact, it is just getting started. This revolution will surprise everyone .
We can't blame Bitcoin for the negative trend it has undergone in recent weeks because the crypto market is currently being rocked by volatility. Volatility in the crypto market is the phenomenon used to describe the unpredictable fast movements of assets in the market. Considering the coronavirus pandemic, it has further deepened the volatility of the digital asset.
Bitcoin needs to break out of $10,000 resistance to make a surge
Looking briefly at the buying and selling pressure indicator, the crypto index is being said to be stuck in a negative zone and currently heads away from the 400 level that acts as its point of resistance. After trying on numerous occasions to break past its resistance $10,000 resistance level, Bitcoin needs to be able to break past the level to be able to make a bearish move in the market. One of the major factors affecting Bitcoin is the sell-off that happened on March 12 after it witnessed a price reduction by half. Dubbed as the Black Thursday, Bitcoin went from a little bit over $7,000 to sell at around $3,000. https://preview.redd.it/miezh8epzz651.png?width=1143&format=png&auto=webp&s=54644b3b17c60fe8aa91f0e80a9bfa6f33f79dbc Talking about the recent disappointing performance of the coin, investor and analyst at Panda, Edward Moya said;
“Bitcoin continues to consolidate in what many crypto fans are calling the typical accumulation phase that occurs after a halving event. The coin has struggled “despite an overall resilient appetite for risky assets."
Moya further noted that if this trend continues, it would force most small scale miners out of the Bitcoin network as they would not be able to make a profit as a result of the halving of the rewards.
"Maybe Bitcoin is a partial store of value but it’s not a unit of account, it’s not a means of payment, it’s not scalable [...] despite its rally earlier this year, it’s lost 60% in value since its peak, so I don’t see it going anywhere frankly."
Buttressing the point of Roubini, Billionaire, Warren buffet claims that Bitcoin is an illusion because it holds no real store of value.
“If you do something phony by going out and selling yo-yos or something, there’s no money in it — but when you get into Wall Street, there’s huge money," the billionaire said.
Conclusively, most people believe that Bitcoin is a good venture, while others have a not so good perspective of the leading cryptocurrency. If Bitcoin continues on this spree and does not experience a major breakout soon enough, most traders would be forced to look elsewhere which is not a good thing for the venture. In the long term, Bitcoin could still make the surge but, in the short run, nothing is sure as of now.
The price of a Satoshi never changes. (coingeek conference subject)
It would take pages and pages to cover this topic but I am going to keep it real simple and just make a few statements that should point to why the statement made by the guest at the coin-geek conference is wrong. The economist said that to work as money you need to lock the price of bitcoin. He is correct in theory, but he didn't understand the following realities.
As the network grows fees should go down.
at full scale fees should be very low
What is the lowest possible fee??
One satoshi is the lowest possible fee, there is no smaller amount of money
What is the value or utility of this one satoshi??
The value is the ability to post one item on the ledger to either pay the fee or act as the anchor for an asset attached to that Satoshi.
It's hard to think of the world without money, so try to imagine the world with no dollars and only valued in gold. That is sort of easy. Now imagine the whole world valued in the ability to watch one movie. Harder, but possible. No imagine the world valued in "posting one item to the ledger". When you value the whole world and all of it's assets in the value terms of "posting one item to the ledger" then you start to see that the value of the satoshi doesn't change. It is the same now as it will be in 1,000 years. The value actuality is the ability to post one thing on the ledger, and I say this having fast forwarded to a point in time where the network has already expanded to near full adoption and reached a balance point. In order to have a good money the money can't be a part of the economy it tries to represent. How can gold be compared to circuit boards when it takes gold to make circuit boards?? The value becomes circular. (a point made by the guest) My thesis is that the value of bitcoin doesn't change, it's the rest of the things in the economy getting cheaper when compared to the only thing that matter, the ability to post to the ledger. Posting to the ledger is such an important power, and this ledger increases trust and reduces bad actors so much that everything just gets cheaper. The utility of dollars when compared to this ledger is laughable, so dollars may go down in value when compared to the ability to post to the ledger. One post to the ledger is worth one post to the ledger, and always will be worth one post to the ledger. To fully understand how the world will work if this network takes over you simply need to price everything compared to the one thing that matters....... the ability to post to the ledger. Without the ability to post to the ledger you are cut off from trade, and to be cut off from trade hurts. This value doesn't change, only the peoples perception changes. What people will trade for access to the ledger will be more and more but this is not the value of one post to the ledger going up, this is the value of other things dropping. Cooperation makes all things cheaper and this ledger is the most massive cooperation ever imagined. A new age of cooperation is about to begin. One post to the ledger will always be worth one post to the ledger, and in a world where everything is valued as "posts to the ledger" this value can't change. The smallest expense possible is one satoshi and this one satoshi can represent anything, and that power is just as valuable now as it will be in 1,000 years. The only difference is that in 1,000 years people will be willing to trade a lot more for that ability because everything we consume will get orders of magnitude cheaper when compared to "a post to the ledger". Sure it's a mind game, but a fun one to think through. Maybe a post to the ledger is the new measuring stick to value the rest of the world in. Once you make that leap you see that the price of a satoshi never changes.
The Day Advances | Monthly FIRE Portfolio Update - January 2020
The day advanced as if to light some work of mine Thoreau, Walden This is my thirty-eighth portfolio update. I complete this update monthly to check my progress against my goal. Portfolio goal My objective is to reach a portfolio of $2 180 000 by 1 July 2021. This would produce a real annual income of about $87 000 (in 2020 dollars). This portfolio objective is based on an expected average real return of 3.99 per cent, or a nominal return of 6.49 per cent. Portfolio summary Vanguard Lifestrategy High Growth Fund – $813 282 Vanguard Lifestrategy Growth Fund – $45 802 Vanguard Lifestrategy Balanced Fund – $83 162 Vanguard Diversified Bonds Fund – $110 472 Vanguard Australian Shares ETF (VAS) – $178 121 Vanguard International Shares ETF (VGS) – $34 965 Betashares Australia 200 ETF (A200) – $272 399 Telstra shares (TLS) – $2 046 Insurance Australia Group shares (IAG) – $8 970 NIB Holdings shares (NHF) – $6 492 Gold ETF (GOLD.ASX) – $106 701 Secured physical gold – $17 252 Ratesetter (P2P lending) – $14 755 Bitcoin – $153 530 Raiz app (Aggressive portfolio) – $18 365 Spaceship Voyager app (Index portfolio) – $2 534 BrickX (P2P rental real estate) – $4 477 Total portfolio value: $1 873 325 (+$94 067) Asset allocation Australian shares – 42.8% (2.2% under) Global shares – 22.6% Emerging markets shares – 2.4% International small companies – 3.1% Total international shares – 28.1% (1.9% under) Total shares – 70.9% (4.1% under) Total property securities – 0.2% (0.2% over) Australian bonds – 4.5% International bonds – 9.5% Total bonds – 14.0% (1.0% under) Gold – 6.6% Bitcoin – 8.2% Gold and alternatives – 14.8% (4.8% over) Presented visually, below is a high-level view of the current asset allocation of the portfolio. Comments This month saw exceptional growth in the portfolio, with a net increase of $94 000 after a small fall last month. [Chart] This is the fastest growth in the past half year. It is also the second largest absolute increase in over three years of measurement. [Chart] As the histogram below - which counts the frequency of occurrences in a specified range of monthly value changes (with red denoting losses) - makes clear, this is one of the most positive outcomes in the three year record. [Chart] The sources of portfolio growth were generally buoyant global and Australian share markets. Just under half of the growth was also due to an increase in the price of both gold securities and Bitcoin. In addition, even bond holdings increased in value over the period. Distribution payments from the Vanguard retail funds, as well as the exchange-traded funds VAS, VGS and A200 were made through this month. These totalled around $14 000 and have begun to be gradually fed back into the portfolio. This is a process which will occur through to June - with new investments twice per month. So far this has led to additional purchases in Vanguard's Australian shares exchange-traded fund (VAS) to maintain the target allocation of Australian equities making up 60 per cent of all equity holdings. The bond allocation of the portfolio continues to be notionally under its target, but has not yet reached a position where further balancing investments are warranted. Fully excluding the value of Bitcoin, for example, it still sits on its target allocation of 15 per cent of the portfolio. If the same calculation is done for equities, they sit just above their target, at 77 per cent, and have drifted higher since early last year. Over the past months my position has been to take no portfolio balancing actions based purely on the volatile value of Bitcoin over time, and this remains my approach. There is no perfect answer to this issue - assigning no value to Bitcoin and ignoring it for asset allocation purposes is inconsistent with its role in the portfolio. Pushing either equity or bond allocations sharply out of target boundaries merely due to short-term Bitcoin movements is also not warranted. Taking a backcast 'moving average' approach might be one statistical solution, but I am not yet convinced it would do more than moderate the appearance of the issue. While expenditure has been higher over the holiday period, on average the gap between the rolling three-year average of distributions and credit card expenditure continues to close, and sits at just over a $300 per month gap at present. Flags of convenience - estimating hedging in the portfolio This month, out of a curiosity carried over from my recent review of my bond holdings, I have found the time to review of the overall currency hedging position of the portfolio. There are some excellent online research papers (pdf) and blog pieces, such as this one from Passive Investing Australia, for those interested in learning more about some of the associated issues. Currency risks have never previously been an object of much detailed thought on the journey. Rather, I had tracked a basic measure of broader exposure to foreign assets (including foreign equities, property securities, gold and more recently Bitcoin). The additional issue of whether my exposure to these assets was unhedged (meaning exposure to gains and losses from the relative movement in the Australian dollar and the foreign currencies) or hedged was not really front of mind. I suppose I had a dim awareness that some elements of the Vanguard retail funds that have until recently dominated the portfolio were hedged (for example, around 30 per cent of the Vanguard High Growth Diversified funds equity position is currency hedged), and judged that there was likely a well-considered rationale behind the amount of this hedging. The first step to understanding where any exposures exist is to understand and measure the current state of affairs. As of today, this is broadly as set out below:
Around 35 per cent of all portfolio assets are effectively unhedged - This includes Bitcoin, unhedged gold holdings, and unhedged international equities and bonds. All other things being equal, if the Australian dollar falls, the value of this part of the portfolio rises in relative terms.
The remaining 65 per cent of assets are either hedged or Australian-held assets - This includes Australian equities, Australian bonds, as well as international equities and bonds hedged back to the Australian dollar.
International equities are partially hedged - The portfolio has around $525 000 in international equities currently. Of this, around $140 000 is hedged back into Australian dollars - a hedging position of 27 per cent.
International bonds are nearly fully hedged - consistent with their portfolio role and discussed here.
The decision to invest in Vanguard's International Shares ETF (VGS), which is unhedged, is a significant event in this regard. The chart below shows the overall level of currency hedging in the international equity portfolio. Investments in VGS commenced from July 2019, and have started to affect the level of hedging. [Chart] As future contributions flow into VGS - absent any other action - a historically quite stable level of hedging will continue to fall. So far this is just a trend I am monitoring, until I have completed more research and thinking on the best approach in this area. There are many complicated, and some unknowable, issues to consider and balance in hedging decisions, such as the likely denomination of future costs, and the historical and future relationships between domestic currencies and equity markets. None avail themselves of short or easy answers. Until I have thought my way through them more fully, I remain hesitant to make any definitive decisions. Progress Progress against the objective, and the additional measures I have reached is set out below. Measure Portfolio All Assets Portfolio Objective – $2 180 000 (or $87 000 pa) 85.2% 115.9% Credit card purchases – $71 000 pa 103.9% 141.4% Total expenses – $89 000 pa 83.3% 113.3% Summary This month has seen rapid progress, propelling the portfolio closer to both old and new goals. The portfolio gains this month have already closed nearly half of the additional distance created by increasing my portfolio target at the beginning of the year. The psychological forward push from distributions performance across 2019 (including, pleasingly, seeing it recognised here) has added to this sense of momentum. Additionally, this month I have also crossed the threshold to the target portfolio size needed to achieve 'credit card FI', a long-standing measure I have tracked. The long summer break that has just ended in some ways seemed like a foretaste of what some versions of financial independence could feel like. With the minimum of planning there was time to read, rest, exercise and write largely as I pleased. Returning to work following this has been infused with an unusual sense of being a temporary visitor in a new workplace. There is a greater philosophical detachment, in observing its rituals and rhythms, and less of a desire to seek to shape or resist its minutiae. Rather, what I have focused on is seeking to more deliberately make use of the freedoms it does not constrain, and pursue the best and most interesting use of the time that is outside of work hours. Through these recent strong Australian and US equity markets, this article has been a useful reminder of the 'survivorship' risks of focusing a FI target too narrowly on past performance. This excellent recent piece from Aussie HIFIRE has also, from another direction, usefully focused on separating out the decisions that do, and do not, materially matter in planning and executing on a passive indexing strategy over the long-term. For a challenging and entirely heterodox view on the potential long-term movement of equity markets upwards from here, this article has been thought-provoking. Finally, this month I have been discovering the Jolly Swagman podcast, which has long and fascinating interviews with the ex-head of the Reserve Bank of Australia, and Nobel Prize winning US economist Robert Shiller speaking on bubbles and narrative economics. During the long restful hours of summer break, the day has advanced. Though clouds may come in time, as the year starts - at least - the way forward looks bright. The post, links and full charts can be seen here.
Back in 2013, when a famed American economist Paul Krugman wrote his infamous op-ed article “Bitcoin Is Evil” for the New York Times, it sparked a debate about whether Bitcoin has any value. In 2018, he wrote another article entitled “Bubble, Bubble, Fraud and Trouble” which states that Bitcoin fell by over 40 percent in merely weeks. Therefore, let’s figure out why Bitcoin has any ... Economist and author of The Bitcoin Standard, Saifedean Ammous, says BTC is so advanced that it is essentially the definition of “sound money”. On the latest edition of the Unchained podcast, Ammous cites principles from the Austrian school of economics, and says Bitcoin’s fixed supply and its resistance to inflation is key to Bitcoin’s superiority as a currency. “From the Austrian ... Over the last few years, many have claimed that bitcoin core has turned into, or will soon become, a store of value (SoV).Proponents of the BTC-based SoV theory seem to think that money can ... According to these two economists, the use of Bitcoin would need to increase 1000x in order for its actual price to equal its current value. Back in March 2018, Harvard economist Kenneth Rogoff said, “Basically, if you take away the possibility of money laundering and tax evasion, [Bitcoin’s] actual uses as a transaction vehicle are very ... To bring light upon the query in motion, we’ll analyze long-standing economic theories versus economist’s doubts while taking under due consideration deeply-rooted market variables, projections, and global acceptance that are all bound to distill a change in the value of Bitcoin in one way or another. The Most Diverse Audience to Date at FMLS 2020 – Where Finance Meets Innovation. With ...
Economist Blasts The Fed, Stimulus, Bitcoin & Makes Bold ...
Does Bitcoin REALLY Have Value? The TRUTH About Bitcoin's Price! - Duration: 13:57. ReadySet 21,911 views. 13:57. Rich Dad Poor Dad Summary (Animated) - Duration: 8:52. ... View full lesson: http://ed.ted.com/lessons/what-gives-a-dollar-bill-its-value-doug-levinson The value of money is determined by how much (or how little) of ... Stephan interviews Saifedean Ammous, Austrian Economics Professor and author of The Bitcoin Standard. In this podcast episode we take a deep dive into the case for Bitcoin as sound money, and what ... bitcoin cash! In this tutorial, we review several resources to learn and research the many coins to buy and the exchange services to buy them on. Those resources are: This video was made possible by our Patreon community! ️ See new videos early, participate in exclusive Q&As, and more! ️ https://www.patreon.com/Economics...