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Gloves are Off: Cryptocurrency vs Hypocrisy

Started by trilight, Mar 17, 2023, 05:14 PM

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trilight

Establishment of hypocrisy

The first hypocrisy is regulation. Bitcoin was created in 2009 for a specific purpose and with a vision: "a purely peer-to-peer version of electronic cash that allow online payments to be sent directly from one party to another without going through a financial institution", quoting Satoshi Nakamoto himself. Recent talks showed some want to make Ethereum a security, and by extension many coins managed by crypto-outfits. This corrupts the vision behind Bitcoin by especially those who claim to embrace it as at the end all cryptocurrencies are children of Bitcoin. Regulators want to fit them into a rigged system, the same that regulates banks and traders which created never-seen-before levels of inequality on our planet. Cryptos are not meant to fit in the existing system; either the existing system changes for the good of many with cryptos in it or cryptos evolve in parallel as an alternative for many. Coins are becoming nothing more than commodities to be exchanged, like crude oil or your Coca-Cola stock.

The second hypocrisy is decentralization. For example Coinbase, Binance, yet also Cloudfare, Meta or even Roblox are conglomerates pulsing with billions of dollars every year and are embracing web3. There are two ways to view this: either they are completely ignorant about crypto and web3, its spirit and vision, or they are knowledgeable and willingly corrupting them by claiming decentralization and empowerment. Real decentralization can happen only when the average person can get rid of these large companies in their life at no or limited cost.

The third hypocrisy is climate action. Many entities with an agenda are taking a shot at Bitcoin with the false reason that proof-of-work is responsible for a serious part of climate change. These people are missing the point: pigs don't fly. The reason Bitcoin exists is to allow humans to trade without trust, without escrows or middlemen, without government or financial institutions overseeing and monitoring. Blaming Bitcoin for the inability of humankind as a species and as a society to regulate climate change is akin to blaming cows for farting methane. Bitcoin is not meant to be green, if you want a green coin, read about proof-of-stake or go plant a tree as in take action where it matters. Not to mention the increasing amount of datacenters using green energy to power their machines and services.

The uniqueness of Bitcoin makes its main use a real store of value while most "clones" aiming to be Bitcoin, outside what Satoshi proclaimed by design, will most likely vanish. That said, there are specialized cryptocurrencies offering extra value to increase anonymity, privacy and security like Monero. Also other cryptocurrencies, maybe not the right word anymore, have real world usage aimed for example at decentralized storage, IoT communication and more. Even those remain depending on what Bitcoin does or the "crypto world" in general. It seems many are tied to each other even if they serve a different purpose, for now. You can point to find negative use cases, for instance crypto being used in autocratic countries and whatnot, but the logic always ends up back to the core vision of peer-to-peer exchanges, online payments without intermediary. Part of what was and still is being marketed has been more like a Ponzi scheme that companies and latecomers are still buying into. This is not the impact Bitcoin was meant to have. Distorting this vision is what quite a few in the crypto-space have been doing with its press and communities: it is hysterical and following it too closely will get you burned. You could even argue being burned is how progress happens, and the failure of FTX cleaned the crypto-space of many predators, with only the "strongest" resisting through the blessing of the financial system. They resist but will become nothing more than stock exchanges, if they haven't already...


Therein lies freedom

Bitcoin changed the world. In turn, as the world couldn't change Bitcoin, tremendous scrutiny has been put on the blockchain, putting it at risk of losing its purpose when it comes to real privacy / anonymity. A decentralized payment method is worth nothing when millions are monitoring the blockchain and matching transactions to individuals when privacy / anonymity is key. We are not yet at a point where it can be considered practically useless for anonymity, which would be if all blockchain transactions were easily linked to a person. There are methods and wallets which help protect users willing to go the extra mile to protect their privacy / anonymity. The large worldwide community of Bitcoin developers are taking steps to implement features to help with increasing privacy / anonymity. 

A word for Monero (XMR)

The risk stands anyway of misusing transparency, which is where the privacy-conscious Monero (XMR) currency comes in. Unlike Bitcoin, it is not fully transparent and transactions are supposedly untraceable. As a warning, do not consider Monero to be bullet-proof. Many countries are spending millions in Monero-tracing technologies. We should assume that they have been partially successful, and are capable of tracking indirectly transactions in some ways, even if not entirely. It remains the best option available for maximizing the privacy and anonymity of conscious users today. Monero has reached critical mass years ago and is ready for adoption, even if it is an uphill battle. It is the most technologically advanced privacy coin with enough users and development force behind it to enable the pursuit of the Bitcoin ideology in the decades to come. This is crypto-anarchism. Therein lies freedom

Other privacy coins, like Zcash and Dash, could be interesting if all were not having at least major flaws. Zcash is a symptom of corrupted decentralization, created by a small group in the Silicon Valley, who collect a fee for all blocks mined and have made Zcash a money-making machine. Dash is an interesting Bitcoin fork which has better privacy than alternatives, yet it is not bullet-proof and it has been cracked already by blockchain-analysis companies. Other coins have tried to upgrade their network to improve their privacy, such as Litecoin. This highlights an interesting trend where developers are finally becoming aware of the users need for privacy and anonymity. In most cases, it is too little too late.