Bitcoin and Crypto and DeFi and Sometimes Ayn Rand


Recommended Posts

On 4/27/2021 at 11:49 PM, Peter said:

Gosh I hope President Trump runs and wins in 2024. He created such hope. But when he lost . . . despair, hopelessness. Meanwhile Biden STRIVES to make us less free, worse off, and under totalitarian rule, etc. 

Is he allowed to run in 2024?

When he gets reinstated before the end of this year, then he only has 3 years left on his second term, so how will that play out?

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, Marc said:

Is he allowed to run in 2024?

When he gets reinstated before the end of this year, then he only has 3 years left on his second term, so how will that play out?

If, then, therefor. If he is reinstated he would serve out approximately three years of his second term acting as President. This idle year can be considered a planning and rest "retreat." The constitution cannot be changed in a flash so he could not run again in 2024 even though fraud spoiled a year of his term. Or . . . . a Republican like Ted Cruz could run for President in 2024 with Donald Trump as his Vice Presidential running mate. Once Trump is in the second seat, President Cruz could assign more Presidential duties to the former President. And then comes 2028 . . . with Cruz President and Trump VP for another four years. Then in 2032 . . . . . ?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

And then in 2032 another Republican like that great patriot Marco Rubio could run for President with Donald Trump as his VP running mate. After all, even his critics say Trump is the leader of the Republican Party, until he retires. Peter 

From The History Channel. American presidents are limited to two, four-year terms in office (or a maximum of 10 years in a case of a president who ascended to the position as vice president), thanks to the 22nd Amendment, which was ratified in 1951. However, vice presidents, like members of the U.S. Congress, face no such restrictions on how long they can hold their jobs. To date, though, no one who’s ever been a heartbeat away from the presidency has served more than two full terms. In fact, only nine VPs have served for eight years: John Adams, Daniel Tompkins, John C. Calhoun, Thomas Marshall, John Nance Garner, Richard Nixon, George H.W. Bush, Al Gore, Dick Cheney and Joe Biden.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Great answer thanks!

Especially the part about Marco Rubio!!!!!

I think that after Trump completes his second term, then for the time that he lost, be it a year or more, he should just be given the title of King for extra time of the year.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, Marc said:

Especially the part about Marco Rubio!!!!!

GAD is a conservative site so check out what President Trump actually said below. Peter  

From Great American Daily: . . . . Trump cited DeSantis’s star turn as Florida Governor—DeSantis rejected mask mandates and quickly dismissed lockdowns while running circles around the attacks from the corporate media—as why DeSantis would be a good choice as his running mate in 2024.

“A lot of people like that — I’m just saying what I read and what you read, they love that ticket,” Trump continued. “But certainly, Ron would be considered. He’s a great guy.”

What stood out about Trump’s answer was the fact that Trump did not mention Pence at all. Trump did not express even the slightest hint that he still considered Pence his running mate or that he wasn’t considering shaking up the ticket if he won the 2024 GOP nomination . . . .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I believe that--right now--people in our subcommunity need to look at Bitcoin and cryptocurrency through the lens of first principles. This is so they can understand what is going on with this new technology. After all, learning Objectivism is learning to think in principles more than details.

People already know I'm big into Max Keiser for this.

But damned if Michael Saylor isn't better, at least from a normal-person Objectivist mindset. Max Keiser is a bit of a wild man and he is as quirky as all get out (which is my attraction to him :) ). Michael Saylor is a billionaire who moves billionaires to get out of their comfort zones and get into a more libertarian mindset without calling it that.

The video below is an education in economic first principles in a manner that makes cryptocurrencies make sense. I wish the title reflected this, but probably, the title focuses on investment because this gets more clicks. 

It's a long video, but it is not boring or full of eye-glazing numbers and stats. There are some, but the meat is given over principles and analogies in order to make this new world understandable. I intend to watch this video more than once.

Enjoy for those who will.

:)

Michael

Link to comment
Share on other sites

All cryptos are down right now. I know this is part of it:

China has been shutting down crypto coin mining, but look at how the miners are regrouping in other places.

Also, the word around the places I have been reading is that big corporations are trying to get in the crypto game, especially since El Salvador declared Bitcoin a national currency and other countries are on the way, so they are trying dirty tricks--somehow trying to short as many cryptos as they can--to temporarily tank them and force out small investors. Then they can swoop in and buy up everything dirt cheap. And reap handsome rewards as country after country adopts Bitcoin. 

Meanwhile, they will try to figure out how to control it.

The good news is many smaller investors are holding firm and there is simply no way to control Bitcoin.

I wish I had a lot of money right now...

Guess what I would do with a huge chunk of it?

:)

Michael

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I haven't watched this video , yet , but put it in the 'list'.

I did just listen to Lex Fridman"s  podcast with Charles Hoskinson, never hard of Hoskinson prior but the conversation and topics helped me to to start to try and understand the types of questions/research to get a better feel for the  'crypto-space' , I think , lol.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don’t know what I am talking about as regards Bitcoin, but does Bill Gates?

From MSN News: . . . . First, the author said that in spite of the hype, bitcoin failed to satisfy the notion of "currency without government." In fact, he said, bitcoin proved to not even be a currency at all. "The total failure of bitcoin in becoming a currency has been masked by the inflation of the currency value, generating (paper) profits for large enough a number of people to enter the discourse well ahead of its utility," he said. Taleb's second criticism said bitcoin can neither be a short nor long-term store of value. He used the famous juxtaposition of gold versus bitcoin - which he said was poor comparison - to illustrate his point. "Gold and other precious metals are largely maintenance-free, do not degrade over a historical horizon, and do not require maintenance to refresh their physical properties over time," he said. "Cryptocurrencies require a sustained amount of interest in them." His final two points argued that bitcoin is not a reliable inflation hedge, contrary to some analysts' views, and is not a safe haven for investments - whether meant to protect against tyranny or other catastrophes.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, Peter said:

I don’t know what I am talking about as regards Bitcoin, but does Bill Gates?

Peter,

I doubt it.

He knows it's a threat he can't rule, though.

:) 

As to Taleb, he hasn't yet understood that Bitcoin is a perfect example of a Black Swan.

But here's a principle for you to observe all this with: follow the money. Watch what people do with it.

As the saying goes, almost all crime boils down to money, sex and power. But money can buy sex and power, so follow the money.

:) 

Michael

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Heh.

image.png

For those who are not familiar with the issue, Nayibe Bukele is the president of El Salvador. He fathered the law that bitcoin is now legal tender (national currency) of El Salvador. And he set up mining bitcoin practically for free using electricity generated by a volcano to run the huge computer networks.

Other countries are lining up (even though not all have volcanos :) ).

The issue scaring the bejeezus out of the ruling class is that bitcoin cannot be confiscated.

A person in one country who wants to take his money out of the country cannot do that with fiat currency or even gold unless the government agrees to it.

For example, there are laws galore about how much cash you can travel with. Laws about wire transfers. Laws about getting permission to transport gold. And so on. All with massive restrictions (except for crony insiders, of course) and all on pain of confiscation of the funds the government deems illegal.

With bitcoin, though, all the guy needs to do is remember his wallet's hash and leave the country. True, if his wallet is offline, he has to take his thumb drive, but that's pretty easy to hide. Wherever he arrives, he has access to all his funds placed in bitcoin and nobody can do a damn thing about it.

Central banks, governments and crony institutions like the IMF and World Bank are not amused. But the little countries are seeing a glorious chance to get out from underneath their thumbs.

And that is exactly what will happen.

It's like a war between one side--a worldwide dictatorial side--outfitted with bows and arrows (fiat money) and another (a much smaller side) armed to the teeth with machine guns, grenades and so on (bitcoin). And those who stay on the side of the oligarchy only get to use bows and arrows whereas those who join the smaller side get their own machine guns and grenades.

This is like the candles versus electricity in Anthem.

The world is a-changin'...

:)

Michael

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you have read this thread, you will have seen Michael Saylor referenced and quoted a lot. He's one of the new bitcoin gurus (in the good sense) and his influence is massive. TAS just recently interviewed him. 

Michael's way or presenting the revolution of bitcoin is compelling for someone with an Objectivist mindset.

1. He breaks it down into first principles, but not because he is deducing reality from principles. He literally decided to go back and dig into first principles a while back so he would not lose his companies and money. And it worked.

2. Michael is a fan of Ayn Rand and has read her major works (maybe all of them).

3. A very interesting comparison--no, it was more like an explanation--he made was with energy. He said that there is a tendency in the physical world for things to collapse from a higher energy state to a lower one. He didn't mention Galt's motor, but the way he described the collapse of currencies (or the reverse, bloating which was when empires collapsed), and took it all the way down to bitcoin, it almost sounded like he was talking the engineering thinking Galt must have used to arrive at his motor.

Here are a couple of useful links Michael talked about.

1. Bitcoin is Hope. You can learn all there is to know about bitcoin here. For free.

2. Saylor Academy. You can get a free college education here in many disciplines. Some of the courses can turn into normal college credits and others come with Completion Certificates. Out on the job market, from what I have seen, Completion Certificates from the Saylor Academy are becoming accepted more and more as proof of knowledge.

The reason Michael is offering all this for free is that he believes more educated people create more wealth for the world. As he has a lot of money and wants more, it only makes sense to help make society more wealthy, especially where wealth would not otherwise spring (this is called first principle thinking :) ).

 

To be fair to the other side of the bifurcated Objectivism movement, but going back a few months (to August 2020), here is a top bitcoin podcaster, Peter McCormack, interviewing Yaron Brook (in audio).

Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand with Yaron Brook on the What Bitcoin Did Podcast with Peter McCormack

Before digging in, let me praise this podcaster presentation-wise. The site is fantastic-looking. There is a printed transcription available, there are chapterized time-stamps so you can jump to specific topics, and there are links galore to things referenced in the discussion (which is almost an hour and a half).

Now to the interview. As often is the case in applying Objectivism to real life in a changing world, Brook gets it wrong. (He gets a lot right, too, so this is not a gratuitous bash. But, man, does he get stuck sometimes on a principle he elevates to dogma. and then digs in with the stubbornness of a friggin' mule. :) )

He says he doesn't mind bitcoin as an asset, but he doesn't think it's money.

He also said his objection to bitcoin--as money--is that it doesn't have any tangible value outside of being money. (I'll let you untangle that one, how A can be not-A at the same time. :) )

In other words, gold can be made into jewelry and so on. That's one of the things (in Brook's view) that makes it money. Bitcoin can't be anything other then bits and bytes, which in Brook's view, precludes it from being money.

That's a serious misidentification. For details in more depth, McCormack took him to task on that. 

But for now and on the surface (and by analogy for easy explanation), I can't even accept his logic. That's like saying that a book isn't really a book unless it is printed on something like paper that can be sold for scrap, or piled up as a door stop, used to line bird cages, etc.

What's missing in the platform having value for something other than the platform?

It's the monetary information that is put on the platform.

Without monetary information put on gold by people using it for that, gold only has metallic value. Without monetary information put on bitcoin by people using it for that, bitcoin only has value as an information organization system (which, as McCormack showed, includes non-monetary uses).

Neither of these platforms used for something other than money have any influence or impact on them for monetary use.

So how in hell does that become a condition for identification? It doesn't in logic. It only does by decree. And that means dogma.

The fundie side of Objectivism, in several areas that I've seen so far, shows difficulty with understanding and accepting the philosophical implications of the digital information revolution.

But Brook did concede a lot in that interview in addition to object. I believe most people who listen to this (or read it) will be more in favor of bitcoin than they will be of Brook's aversion to it based on the arguments alone, including Brook's own arguments. 

 

As an aside, the dollar cap on bitcoin back in August was $200 billion from what they said in the interview. Today, not even a year later, it is over a trillion dollars.

 

Anywho, bitcoin is coming into O-Land at the top whether people like it or not. I suspect it is already entrenched and widespread at the bottom, meaning among non-celebrity Objectivists or people interested in Rand's ideas. :) 

Michael

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Here is a fascinating showdown from a couple of months ago between Michael Saylor and Frank Giustra hosted by Stansberry.

Frank Giustra is a gold bug and Michael is a bitcoin visionary.

One of the really interesting things I detected in this debate is how often Giustra disparaged Michael as a person, his knowledge, his ability to reason, and so on. But Michael kept upbeat, kept to his reasons for promoting bitcoin, and probably won the debate in the minds of many based on manners alone.

I discussed this in a post about The Ayn Rand Podcast (see here, the part where I discussed Mike Lindell).

As to the arguments themselves, Michael Saylor came super-prepared in his facts, history, logic, principles and so on. Most of Frank Giustra's arguments boiled down to two points: (1) The governments and central banks in the world will never allow bitcoin to become a greater store of value than gold, they will take out bitcoin by force. Full stop. And by the way, (2) Michael Saylor is an idiot. Granted, he didn't say so directly, but that subtext was as clear as an old time train whistle. 

If, like me, you are just now learning about bitcoin, this is a great video to watch. Despite the one-sided friction on Giustra's part, there was a lot of great information imparted. And, to be fair, it's a great thing to get push-back the way Giustra did. He's no fool and he did come up with some angles that are great to think about as balance.

Michael

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Here is Peter Diamandis interviewing Michael Saylor and Bill Barhydt. The nutshell bios at YouTube are worth repeating here.

Quote

Michael Saylor
CEO of Microstrategy

Michael Saylor is the Chairman & CEO of MicroStrategy (MSTR), a publicly traded business intelligence firm that he founded in 1989. He is also the founder of Alarm.com (ALRM), named inventor on 40+ patents, and author of the book “The Mobile Wave”. He founded and serves as trustee for the Saylor Academy (saylor.org), a non-profit organization that has provided free education to 800,000+ students. He is an advocate for the Bitcoin Standard (hope.com). He has dual degrees from MIT in Aerospace Engineering and History of Science.

Bill Barhydt
CEO & Founder of Abra

Bill Barhydt is the CEO and founder of Abra the leading crypto wealth management app. Abra is the first service combining a crypto brokerage, a high yield interest account and a lending service for borrowing against crypto holdings into a single smartphone app. Bill’s multi decade career in Internet and financial technology includes prior work for Goldman Sachs, NASA and Netscape.  Bill gave the first TED talk on Bitcoin in 2012 and has also been featured on CNBC, Fox Business, CNN, The Wall St Journal and The New York Times.

Peter H. Diamandis, MD
Founder/Chairman of XPRIZE

Peter H. Diamandis is the Executive Founder of Singularity University and Executive Chairman of the XPRIZE Foundation. In 2014 he was named one of "The World’s 50 Greatest Leaders" – by Fortune Magazine. Diamandis is the New York Times Bestselling author of "Abundance" and "BOLD." He earned an undergraduate degree in Molecular Genetics and a graduate degree in Aerospace Engineering from MIT, and received his M.D. from Harvard Medical School.

I'm only halfway through this video and it's like I'm learning about cryptocurrency all over again, except I already know some fundamental principles and information from previous study.

By analogy, lets say I learned to count before. With this interview, I am learning to add and substract.

:) 

If you want to know more about bitcoin investing in practical terms, this video digs into that.

Basically, bitcoin is a currency (and Saylor says it is not all that great as a currency), it is an asset, which Saylor says is one of the most lucrative in human history if you look at the edge of medium term (about 4 years), and it's a platform or tie-in for apps, which is its most volatile use right now.

The reason bitcoin is and will be so lucrative is that it is property in all countries and local governments cannot confiscate that property without hamhanded measures like prison, torture, high-tech spying on individuals, etc. The bitcoin algorithm give property rights to all of humanity without the need for governments to enforce them (which ultimately makes governments able to confiscate property). 

The big corporations and institutions are more and more becoming aware of this in practice, not just in theory. And they are jumping on board. As Michael said, when just one insurance company issues something where bitcoin is involved, all its customers (say 50,000) are suddenly tying into bitcoin.

Highly recommended interview.

This sucker is 2.5 hours long and I intend to watch it at least one more time after I finish this one. Maybe even twice more.

Michael

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Here's another Saylor video.

If anyone wants to go deep into the correlation of reality to the finance world, Michael Saylor is the one I have found who makes the most sense to me,

This video elaborates on first principle in a manner not present in the other videos. Also, the interviewer, Benjamin Cowen, was holding to a more traditional view (things like diversify your investments, etc.) and there were a few moments of tension.

I completely get where Michael was coming from and his frustration at not getting the idea across that a whole new way of thinking is needed to understand why bitcoin works as it does.

I used the analogy above about a person laughing at a car back around, say 1905, because there was no provision for alfalfa to feed it.

I felt this between Michael and Benjamin.

Subtext-wise, it seemed like Benjamin wanted to get Michael's sanction for his more conventional ideas (especially diversification) so he could pull out a tip for his own customers about which cryptocurrency other than bitcoin to invest in. I think Michael caught this and this is what irritated him a bit (although he stayed perfectly classy all throughout).

btw - The beef with diversification is that it is highly context-dependent.

For a short version by example of how this works, , if you were a Jew in Germany as the Nazis were taking over, which diversification strategy would be best for you? Obviously, the only one you could entertain based on reality was to get the hell out of the country. Maybe carry what you could, but get the hell out.

:) 

I get that. It's as clear as a clean window to me. Yet Benjamin kept insisting right after Michael would make this kind of point, "Yes, but suppose you had a basket of cryptocurrencies..." blah blah blah.

I don't think he grocked the mother of all first principles applied to investing, that you have to be alive to spend money.

:) 

Where this applies to investing is that you need to look at what governments are doing, especially with money, inflation, and so on. You have to take into account what they do in any and all investment scenarios in order to be on solid ground. You have to correlate this to reality whether it benefits you or damages you, not to what your pet theory is.

Michael didn't stop at governments for the reality view, either. He went into a whole lot more.

I am finally learning about investments and finance in a manner that I resonate with. It's based on human nature, not just piles of figures that I can't make heads or tails of.

Michael

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Even George fucking Soros is now buying bitcoin.

Legendary investor George Soros is trading bitcoin after eyeing digital tokens for years, report says

At least he's not going to be able to manipulate it like he did other currencies to bankrupt entire nations.

But if anyone can do monkey business with bitcoin, he's the asshole who can do it. The good news is he won't. Not because he doesn't want to, but because he can't.

Wanna see proof? Keep watching.

The only reason he's interested in bitcoin is because he knows its getting ready to spike like hell. Profit. It may be profit he doesn't control and manipulate, but it's still profit. And to people like him, he'll take profit from wherever he can get it.

On the other hand, Soros getting into bitcoin is actually a great proof of concept test to show just how robust bitcoin is as personal property. If he can't wreck it, nobody can.

Michael

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Bitcoin went below $30,000, but it's temporary and there is a reason.

Essentially, a whale (a huge whale) dumped over $2 billion of bitcoin on Coinbase in one whack. 

George thinks this was a desperate effort by someone to drive the value of bitcoin down since there are not that many people in the world who hold that much bitcoin in a single account.

He also thinks it's linked to a conference tomorrow between Jack Dorsey, Elon Musk and Cathie Wood, all massive bitcoin holders. 

All this means is that the dip is going to bounce right back up.

George's idea of playing arbitrage, for those who like to buy in the dip and sell soon after, is to spread out the purchased in five chunks. But in this case, he thinks the current dip is a great point to purchase.

In his view, the current dip is proof of bitcoin's soundness. It took over $2 billion to lower the value of bitcoin by a tiny amount. How many other people out there have bitcoin funds in such quantities to stage such a short-like maneuver (kinda like pump and dump) guaranteed to fail in the mid-range? Not many. People who have billions of dollars in investments generally don't like to play games with their money.

:) 

Michael

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now