Posts Tagged ‘Markets’

Monetary Reality

Kevin D Williamson writes one of the best pieces yet on Bitcoin:

To argue that bitcoins are not “real money” because they have no central-bank regulation or central issuer is like arguing that a prepaid disposable cell phone is not a “real phone” because its number doesn’t appear in the directory and you don’t get a bill. That’s the point, or at least part of the point. 

I am skeptical of the Bitcoin model, but it has in no small part been a victim of its own popularity, with speculative investments in bitcoins overwhelming their use in commercial transactions. But this phenomenon is not unknown among traditional currencies. Consider the lengths to which the Swiss have had to go in recent years to stabilize the value of the franc as euros (and, to a lesser extent, dollars) bounced about. 

But that misses the broader point in a couple of ways. The first is that bitcoins and other private currencies are intended as replacements for greenbacks in approximately the same way that the Internet was intended to be a replacement for the printing press: They may do that, sure, but they will have other uses as well. Wresting control of currencies away from politicians is the only way to let money evolve. Twenty years ago, you didn’t know that you’d want to take photos with your telephone or use it as a boarding pass at the airport. Now you do. Nobody planned that. Nobody knows what “real money” is going to mean in twenty years. 

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March 4, 2014admin 20 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Commerce , Technology

Over the Peak

Testifying to the effectiveness of radically illiberal zero-tolerance policies, Outside in has just two semi-regular trolls. One, from the right, pops in occasionally to berate me for promoting the genocide of the white Volk. The other, from the left, specializes in cod psychoanalysis, directed primarily at my recent ancestors. Due to incontinent potty-mouths, mood-control issues, and addiction to argumentum ad hominum, in neither case can they be trusted with the door-key. Sporadically, however, some fragment of a spittle-flecked rant is worth passing on.

Quickly following upon the recommendation to readers here that the Archdruid Report contained some highly intelligent discussion of historical models (or ‘time shapes’), Left Troll turned up, in a slightly less deranged fury than usual, to denounce ‘our’ flirtation with druidic villainy. After scolding ‘us’ for the “ignorance displayed in this thread about the latest happenings in fusion research … [which] is just astounding”  (remedial education here), he noted that “No one has mentioned methane hydrate.”

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July 13, 2013admin 9 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Uncategorized