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1  Economy / Economics / When the People's Choice is not the Investors' Choice: Economic Prospects on: May 07, 2022, 02:35:39 AM
My country will have its presidential election a couple of days from now. It's gonna be on Monday, May 9. All the surveys are pointing at the son of the infamous dictator Ferdinand Marcos Sr. and Imelda Marcos as the potential winner. The result is more or less expected to be a landslide victory for the only boy of probably the most hated couple in Philippine history. Second in the surveys is the current vice president, but she's trailing too far behind.

Things could have been easily acceptable since the voice of the people is the voice of god. However, it somehow causes anxiety and worry when the choice of the general populace is not the choice of investors, the sector that plays a very vital role in the country's economy. To make things worse, not only is the namesake of the old dictator not the choice of the sector that creates assets and employment, he is the least of the choices, together with the boxing legend, Manny Pacquiao.[1][2]

So far, the country's currency has experienced a three-year low, partly due to election concerns.[3] The stock market is also going down.[4] And while there is the prospect of a nice ROI months after the elections, this one is a bit different. Not only are the investors wary of the next possible administration, there is also high inflation, a pandemic, and a war far away yet affecting the domestic economy.[5]

N.B.: This isn't a political discussion.

[1] https://www.bworldonline.com/the-nation/2022/03/13/435503/investors-lukewarm-to-marcos-presidency/
[2] https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-03-13/marcos-nears-bottom-in-philippine-markets-poll-favoring-robredo
[3] https://www.thestar.com.my/aseanplus/aseanplus-news/2022/05/04/philippine-peso-falls-to-three-year-low-on-fed-election-worries
[4] https://tradingeconomics.com/philippines/stock-market
[5] https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-05-06/presidential-elections-spell-fat-philippine-stock-returns
2  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Banks in Ukraine Restrict Clients from Buying Bitcoin using Ukrainian hryvnia on: March 19, 2022, 03:36:03 AM
This news somehow puzzled me. It's ironic that just a few days after President Zelenskyy signed the crypto-friendly bill, On Virtual Assets, banks have now restricted clients from purchasing Bitcoin using the local currency.

It seems the order is directly coming from the country's central bank, the National Bank of Ukraine, accordingly while martial law is in place. PrivatBank, Ukraine's largest commercial bank, is one of those that implements the restriction. Accordingly, PrivatBank is trying to "keep financial stability under martial law."

I'm not sure how high the demand for crypto is in Ukraine, but is it a threat to Ukrainian hryvnia's stability? Is the demand that high that it could significantly pull hryvnia's value down?

It somehow dawned on me that governments, which are basically built on fiat, couldn't serve two masters at the same time, fiat and crypto. By fully embracing crypto, it is very possible that people will ditch their local currencies in favor of Bitcoin. In this way, the value of the currency as well as the economy is affected. Is this the case with Ukraine?


1. https://cointelegraph.com/news/ukraine-s-largest-savings-bank-halts-bitcoin-buys-with-hryvnia-report
3  Economy / Gambling discussion / Oscars to include Fan-Favorite Film via Twitter on: February 16, 2022, 02:28:23 AM
It is being reported that the upcoming 94th Academy Awards will be having a new addition. One of which is the Top Fan-Voted Film.

"Beginning this Monday, Twitter users will get to vote on their favorite films that were released in 2021 — regardless of if the film was nominated for an Oscar — using the hashtag #OscarsFanFavorite. The film that receives the most fan votes by March 3 will be recognized during the awards broadcast on March 27."[1]

Furthermore, "for both the fan-favorite film and cheer moment campaigns, Twitter users will be able to tweet out their submissions up to 20 times a day."[Ibid.]

I was thinking of the gambling implication of this. What if somebody places a huge bet, say, a million or two, on a particular film and then activates all kinds of bots and thousands of fake Twitter accounts that could spam the platform of votes 20 times a day every single day from the beginning of voting until the end? In other words, is this open for manipulation?


[1] https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/business/digital/oscars-twitter-2022-1235092124/
4  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / A quick reminder from Eric Adams, mayor of the City of New York. on: January 07, 2022, 02:22:11 AM
Hey folks, Bitcoin is coming down, hitting a certain price never before seen in probably 90 days. I know that's not really bothersome. We've been in countless similar situations in the past. But we know others are probably troubled when Bitcoin is losing almost 40% from its ATH price. The fear level has risen. As a matter of fact, extreme fear is being recorded for the last couple of days.[1]

Perhaps a reminder from the mayor of New York City could help ease the fear. Take note that this is the man who promised to take his first 3 paychecks in Bitcoin as mayor. When asked if he had received his paycheck in Bitcoin already, and was told that the price of Bitcoin has come down, he simply laughed it off saying, "Well, you know what, sometimes the best time to buy is when things come down so when you go back up you've made a good profit..."[2]

So, there you go, as simple as that; these are buying days, folks! Let's all enjoy the bargain sale!


[1] https://alternative.me/crypto/fear-and-greed-index/
[2] https://twitter.com/SquawkCNBC/status/1479069915281870853
5  Economy / Economics / Another One Bites the Dust: Entebbe Int. Airport falls to China's Debt Trap on: November 29, 2021, 03:08:53 AM
Another one has fallen.

The Entebbe International Airport is now reportedly directly taken over by China due to loan default. The only International airport of Uganda, which serves at least 1.9 passengers every year, is the latest victim of China's loan trap.

In 2015, the Ugandan government took a $207 million-loan from the Export-Import Bank of China for the international airport's expansion. As expected, the loan agreement signed by both parties included sneaky and questionable clauses. Uganda's president, Yoweri Museveni, attempted to renegotiate the deal with the Chinese government but to no avail. And now that the country has failed to repay this commercial loan, a clause which basically means the airport will have to be surrendered to China is feared to have taken effect.

The Ugandan Entebbe International Airport is just one among many countries' national assets that had to be directly forfeited in favor of China due to loan default.

This post-modern way of conquest by China will have to stop! But how?


Sources:

1. https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/international/business/china-reportedly-takes-over-ugandas-airport-on-account-of-loan-default/articleshow/87957646.cms
2. https://www.ndtv.com/world-news/china-to-seize-entebbe-airport-over-loan-uganda-denies-debt-trap-reports-2628059
6  Economy / Service Discussion / Elon calls out CZ over Binance issue; CZ got piqued, went out of context on: November 23, 2021, 02:04:23 PM
This all started when CoinDesk tweeted one of its published article involving Binance and its CEO, CZ. The article was about Binance seeking investments from sovereign wealth funds.

Elon Musk replied to CoinDesk's tweet by calling out CZ over the issue of Doge withdrawals on Binance.


https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1463085111600205825

At first, it was the official Binance Twitter account that responded to Elon's tweet. The response attached a thread also by Binance explaining the issue, basically pointing to the Doge upgrade as the root cause of the problem.


https://twitter.com/binance/status/1463094150828412933

To which Elon also responded with a couple of tweets. The second of which attached the response of Dogecoin Developers over the Binance situation.


https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1463096278171148290
https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1463098791414882304

As if Binance's response to Elon wasn't enough, CZ himself made another response.


https://twitter.com/cz_binance/status/1463098640319217670

Unfortunately, though, the CEO's response went apparently out of context. CZ was obviously irritated with Elon calling him out. After once again blaming Doge for the problem, CZ brought the issue of Tesla's recall of almost 12,000 vehicles.

I was really caught by surprise on how CZ responded to a legitimate issue regarding Doge withdrawals in Binance. Other than the fact that Binance is the only exchange having this problem, which could mean Doge is not really the root cause here, how on earth was Tesla's problems related to Binance's Doge withdrawal problems? CZ couldn't take the issue objectively!
7  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Hillary Clinton: Nation states should pay attention to the rise of crypto on: November 19, 2021, 02:06:29 PM
Today is the third day of the New Economy Forum and the speakers for today include Hillary Clinton and Tony Blair.

For her part, Clinton made mention of cryptocurrency. She urged that nation states should start paying attention to its rise. I don't know how much the former US presidential candidate and secretary of state knows about cryptocurrency but she is definitely briefed about it.

For better or for worse, she interprets crypto-- perhaps she actually meant Bitcoin more than crypto-- as having the potential for undermining not just other less powerful fiat currencies but also the USD itself as the reserve currency.

This to me is a sign that the old order has now been seriously shaken to the core. And rather than opposing that which seriously disrupts the old system, something which they cannot stop, it might actually serve them better if they just embrace and exploit it.

If the USD is now being threatened and the threat is more or less unstoppable primarily because of its decentralized system, it might be prudent to just welcome the threat and make use of it.

What do you think? Will the USD face its eventual demise as a reserve currency due to its own weaknesses and the threat of other growing competitor currencies? Or could it be revived and even made stronger by the adoption of Bitcoin as a potential reserve currency in the future?


Source:

1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OuNhMuEGk0M
8  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / When Religion and Finance [Bitcoin] Overlap and Clash on: November 12, 2021, 01:29:12 PM
Religion, organized religion in particular, is basically focused on spiritual matters, those relating to faith and the supreme being. Once it crosses the spiritual border and enters the mundane world, a clash cannot be avoided.

This is in relation to Indonesia's national Islamic council's declaration of Bitcoin as haram or forbidden. The reason being is that Bitcoin is said to have the elements of uncertainty and wagering.

While the country's top Islamic body's declaration is not legally binding, it is influential to the lives of hundreds of millions of Indonesians who are Muslims. While Bitcoin trading continues, those who strictly adhere to the Islamic Sharia law might find it in direct conflict to their religious morals.

I'm interested to know your opinion on this. I assume there are a lot of Muslim Indonesians in this forum as well as Muslims from other parts of the world. What can you say about this? Which side are you?


Sources:

1. https://cointelegraph.com/news/indonesia-s-national-islamic-council-declares-bitcoin-haram
2. https://www.coindesk.com/policy/2021/11/11/indonesias-religious-leaders-declare-crypto-illegal-for-muslims-report/
3. https://finance.yahoo.com/news/crypto-haram-says-indonesian-islamic-113951771.html
9  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Walmart Sells Bitcoin on: October 22, 2021, 02:14:40 AM
Well, it's not Walmart itself. Walmart is just hosting Coinstar kiosks which sell Bitcoin. This is in partnership with the crypto wallet and exchange, CoinMe.

For those who have been into Bitcoin for some time, this may not sound interesting at all. But given the fact that this is Walmart, the largest retail company in the world, bringing Bitcoin to the masses, this is rather big. This is bringing Bitcoin to the mainstream. For a start, because this is still in the pilot phase, 200 Coinstar kiosks are installed inside various Walmart stores across the US. If this is successful, this might become bigger in the future considering that Walmart has thousands of stores in the US.

The good thing with Coinstar kiosks is that retail buyers are allowed to buy small amounts of Bitcoin for as long as they're paying with paper bills. The downside, however, is that you are required to setup a CoinMe account which requires KYC. In addition, there is also a 4% transaction fee plus another 7% cash exchange fee.

Do you think this will be successful?


Sources:
1. https://www.reuters.com/business/walmart-allowing-some-shoppers-buy-bitcoin-coinstar-kiosks-2021-10-21/
2. https://www.coindesk.com/business/2021/10/21/walmart-has-quietly-begun-hosting-bitcoin-atms/
3. https://www.reuters.com/article/walmart-cryptocurrency-idUSL4N2RH4BL
10  Other / Beginners & Help / Newbies, please be aware that Bitcoin.org is compromised! on: September 23, 2021, 04:13:50 AM
A similar thread has already been created in the Bitcoin discussion board. However, it might be important for any beginner who goes straight to this board to know that the website which is considered the official site of Bitcoin is hacked.

Someone searching for Bitcoin online might be led to Wikipedia. Bitcoin.org is indicated there as the website of Bitcoin. They might trust whatever is written there. Please be informed that a scammer has already taken over that site.

There is a double-your-money offer presented on the site. That is a scam.

We don't know when it will be taken down. For now, avoid sending any amount of Bitcoin to the address indicated there.
11  Economy / Service Discussion / Twitter seems likely to integrate tipping using Bitcoin. on: September 02, 2021, 02:27:55 AM
Reports have it that Jack Dorsey's Twitter is currently testing the use of tips on the platform using Bitcoin on the Lightning Network. This will likely use the services of Jack Mallers' Strike. Furthermore, the new function is rumored to support both custodial and non-custodial wallets.[1]

A leaked image is released by developer, Alessandro Paluzzi, as to how the feature would probably look like.


https://twitter.com/alex193a/status/1432963409151135744/photo/1

Jack has already made hints about it several weeks ago when he made statements regarding Bitcoin and Twitter's future.[2]

However, it seems this development is not that interesting at all given the fact that the Bitcoin Lightning App Strike implements KYC. John Carvalho, for example, who used to be an executive of Bitrefill, expresses his dismay on Strike's KYC/AML screening requirements.[3]

[1] https://www.theblockcrypto.com/post/116320/twitter-appears-to-be-adding-the-ability-to-tip-using-bitcoin
[2] https://www.theblockcrypto.com/post/112299/bitcoin-big-part-twitter-future-ceo-jack-dorsey
[3] https://twitter.com/BitcoinErrorLog/status/1433041075032281091
12  Economy / Exchanges / Another Battle for Binance on: August 24, 2021, 03:14:54 AM
For the past months, Binance has been facing a number of regulatory troubles in more than a handful countries. The company is also facing lawsuits at the same time. And as if things are not yet enough for the beleaguered exchange, another allegation had just come out. This time it is about manipulating the market, specifically engaging in counter trading and liquidation of users. This serious accusation came from someone who claimed to be a former big data engineer of the exchange.

"I have multiple audio and video files inside the office in which management is CLEARLY talking about 'quickly' liquidating the overleveraged 'longs and shorts' before allowing price to continue up/down, in order to increase the companies' insurance fund & profits."

"Binance “keeps an overview of big liq levels and purposely pumps/dumps the price to take them out for profit.”

"ALSO, ONE OF OUR PROJECTS WAS TO DEVELOP "NEW METHODS" TO INCREASE THE COMPANIES' EFFICIENCY REGARDING MANIPULATION OF PRICE ACTION IN ORDER TO LIQUIDATE OVERLEVERAGED POSITIONS. PROOF IN THE FORM OF SCREENSHOTS, AUDIO & VIDEO FILES & OUR WEEKLY SCRUM MEETINGS ARE AVAILABLE."
— FULLTIME APE 🦍 | EX-BINANCE BIG DATA ENGINEER (@REALFULLTIMEAPE) AUGUST 21, 2021


"I'LL SOON RELEASE ALL THE PROOF I HAVE THAT HEAVILY IMPLY & PROVE THAT BINANCE IS USING MALICIOUS PRACTICES IN ORDER TO FINANCIALLY BENEFIT THE COMPANY.

WHY AM I DOING THIS? SIMPLY BECAUSE THEY TREATED ME (AND OTHER EMPLOYEES) LIKE UNDERPAID SHIT.

HAVE A NICE DAY CHADS 👋"
— FULLTIME APE 🦍 | EX-BINANCE BIG DATA ENGINEER (@REALFULLTIMEAPE) AUGUST 21, 2021

Interestingly, even if the accusation is just raised by a random and anonymous Twitter user, @RealFulltimeApe, in a mere tweet, Binance seems to have been bothered by it. They responded to it by releasing a statement. And while they appear to brush it off as a mere FUD, something coming from someone who is an impersonator or one with malicious intent, it seems they are also hinting at the possibility of it being true by saying they also welcome responsible whistle-blowing. Does Binance fear of what RealFulltimeApe has up his sleeve?

As I've been saying, I'm no fan of margin trading, especially those with ridiculous leverages; they're an invitation for intentional liquidations. But is Binance also involved with it?

By the way, RealFulltimeApe's tweet is already deleted as well as his account deactivated.

Sources:

1. https://cointelegraph.com/news/binance-denies-allegations-of-market-manipulation
2. https://crypto-economy.com/heres-what-binance-has-to-say-about-market-manipulation-allegation/
3. https://twitter.com/binance/status/1429848224215355394
13  Other / Beginners & Help / When Decentralized in DeFi has a Single Point of Failure on: August 13, 2021, 04:19:48 AM
I remember when I was first introduced to the term decentralization in crypto, one of the main highlights was that it doesn't have a central server, a central control system, a central admin, a central point person, a central everything whose failure or malfunction could mean the failure of the entire system. And this sold well to me. It's the one aspect which makes decentralization worth trusting. A decentralized system means less worries because there is no single point of failure.

Nobody controls the money except the one who's got the private keys. Transactions are peer to peer, no need to trust a third party. There's no CEO. No president either. Codes rule. ...until a bug is found by someone who's looking for fun and more than $610 million is stolen, the largest theft ever to happen in the crypto universe.[1] And it happened in a decentralized system.

Which leads us to ask, how come? Can any random person just enter a decentralized system and take away hundreds of millions? Well, probably no. But perhaps we should begin to evaluate the decentralized in DeFi and in other decentralized services.

But to someone who's a newbie or a crypto layman who doesn't have the technical capacity to review codes and smart contracts, perhaps we should just adopt a skeptical view of what's being offered us hot. Let us be more cautious. After all, this is not the first time an attack on a decentralized platform happened.

[1] https://www.cnbc.com/2021/08/12/poly-network-hacker-behind-600-million-crypto-heist-did-it-for-fun.html
14  Economy / Gambling discussion / Has anybody ever used pnxbet? on: July 06, 2021, 02:24:34 AM
I already created an account with the site, pnxbet(dot)com, but haven't made use of it yet. I first want to hear some comments from those who have actually used the site.

I decided to open an account with pnxbet primarily because of convenience. It accepts crypto as well as my local fiat and the deposit methods are also very friendly.

I actually first heard about it from a friend. I then took some time looking for some feedback about the platform online. I mostly read that the site is legit. I also read a good portion of its general terms and conditions. More or less, I already have an idea about the site. But I thought it is best to listen to those who have actual experiences with it.
15  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / And now the IMF comes in! on: June 11, 2021, 03:57:38 AM
Just when El Salvador is trying to address a perennial problem on the access to traditional financial services, and has decided to try easing it out with adopting Bitcoin as a legal tender alongside the USD, the IMF comes in bringing bad news.

IMF is now talking about "macroeconomic, financial and legal issues" just as the sovereign country is looking for means to improve the life of its people.[1]

I don't understand. 70% of the people of El Salvador do not have access to banking services. This is a huge hindrance to its development as a country. Poverty is rampant. 4 out of 10 are living in poverty with 50% of the "country’s children and teenagers live on less than US $1.25 per day."[2]

El Salvador's situation couldn't get any worse. And now that they are trying to experiment with something which could probably address a significant facet of the nation's problem, with something which is completely free from control, politics, internal power struggles, abuse, manipulation, and so on, the IMF, which is primarily tasked to secure financial stability, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world, is now discouraging it.

I mean, what the heck! What do you want to happen to the beautiful country of El Salvador? To remain stuck in its cesspool?

[1] https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-06-10/imf-sees-risks-in-el-salvador-law-making-bitcoin-legal-tender
[2] https://www.humanium.org/en/el-salvador/
16  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Bitcoin Communities on: April 30, 2021, 03:46:16 AM
It is nice to hear news of Bitcoin adoption happening because it addresses real life problems. Much of the Bitcoin news lately talk of the price, of rising Bitcoin investment opportunities, of huge amounts expected to enter the market, and so on. Only seldom do we hear of news about Bitcoin adoption on the basis of real world problems on the ground getting addressed with its exploitation. Here's one:

The world's first fully Bitcoin-enabled community is being built on this small Caribbean island

The beautiful island of Bequia is a victim of bank 'derisking,' a process in which large banking institutions "remove their intermediary banking services from smaller island-based community banks." This prevents the island-based banks from transacting internationally. If this trend continues it means small island nations will be essentially cut off from international trade and commerce. For tourism-based economies, this will be devastating."

When I searched further for Bitcoin communities, I found this article from Forbes.

This El Salvador Village Adopts Bitcoin As Money

El Zonte is a small beach community of unbanked locals where small businesses cannot even meet the minimum requirements for banks to let them accept credit card payments. Moreover, international remittance is one source of income. However, locals are dependent on Western Union which charges them with fees as high as 5-10% and whose nearest branch is 1 hour away by bus.

Have you heard of similar Bitcoin communities? Share them here. These small communities would serve as a sort of a case study for Bitcoin's viability.
17  Economy / Exchanges / Binance Walks an Extra Mile: An Aggressive Initiative in the Face of Competition on: February 08, 2021, 02:17:54 AM
The largest exchange by volume, Binance, remains restless.

I was regularly checking my mail when I came upon an email coming from Binance with the subject 'Become a Binance VIP.' I was a little curious that I opened it. I normally just delete this kind of exchange spams.

I was kind of amazed at how Binance remains very aggressive in dealing with competition. The platform's recruitment approach is of a different level. They're sending out emails to traders to try to make them jump ship.

"Show us your trading volumes on competing exchanges and we will offer you, for two months, a VIP tier that is one level higher than what you would have received if you had traded this volume on Binance."

It seems Binance's number one spot just isn't enough; it wants to pirate its competitors' volume contributors.  
18  Bitcoin / Wallet software / Does BRD mobile wallet on iOS support Segwit? on: January 21, 2021, 01:41:08 PM
I have just installed a BRD wallet on my iPhone. Before I did it, I made a little research whether their mobile wallet on iOS is supporting SegWit. From what I've read, BRD is supporting it although still in Beta. However, I cannot find it. When I click receive, I am only provided with a legacy address.

To those who have been using BRD wallet on their iPhone, am I missing something? Where can I find my SegWit address? Or are they still supporting it?

Thank you in advance!
19  Local / Pamilihan / Selling BTC & ETH on: January 03, 2021, 03:57:51 AM
The richest man on earth is finally joining the game. Papunta na tayong Mars mga kapanalig! Grin Baka may gustong humabol, I am selling BTC & ETH for PHP. Medyo mataas ang fees, let's have a 6-digit transaction kung pwede para sulit.

Will accept payment through bank transfer preferably through EastWest and PNB but could also accept through BPI or Landbank, or through cash if you are located within Davao City.

Let's use Google for BTC/ETH to PHP conversion rate. You'll have it a lot cheaper than Binance's P2P.
20  Economy / Gambling discussion / UFC 257 Main Event: McGregor vs. Poirier [Prediction and Discussion] on: December 24, 2020, 03:35:45 AM

Venue: Flash Forum on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates



After more than half a decade, the two will meet again. Since they first met on September 27, 2014, both have made a good deal of winning achievements, suffering only a couple of losses, each in the hands of Nurmagomedov.

While their first match was a McGregor show, the second might be a different one. This is gonna be Conor's first UFC match after a year while Poirier just had a UD win over Hooker in June of 2020.



The odds:

Sportsbet: Poirier, Dustin 2.85 -- McGregor, Conor 1.37
Cloudbet: Poirier, Dustin 2.97 -- McGregor, Conor 1.40
Nitrogen Sports: Poirier, Dustin +197 -- McGregor, Conor -263
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