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961  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Re: Why Is There So Much Talk About The Dark Side Of BTC? on: January 29, 2014, 03:59:35 PM
The same reason there are no stories about planes landing without issue.

Vice sells ads and nobody is in the new business anymore, they are in the ad business.
962  Bitcoin / Mining speculation / Re: Who cares about the exchange vs electricity? Really? on: January 29, 2014, 03:45:09 AM
IF the electrical cost is higher than the value of the mined bitcoins why not just buy them instead?

One way to look at it is mining is buying coins with electricity (and ammortized hardware cost).

If right now you could buy one BTC for $800 or mine one for $900 why would you pick the later?  You want less BTC?  You are hoping to keep yourself from becoming too wealthy? Smiley
963  Other / Off-topic / Re: Gambled away my tuition bitcoins on: January 29, 2014, 03:42:41 AM
Gambling is bad, gambling with money you can't afford to lose is worse.

Get a part time minimum wage job preferably a really crappy one like flipping burgers.  The 600+ hours you will need to work will provide some negative reinforcement which should last the rest of your life.

(Before someone complains about being an ass, I worked crappy jobs through college, it sucked but it didn't kill me and it won't kill the OP either). 
964  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Re: CEO OF BITCOIN EXCHANGE ARRESTED on: January 29, 2014, 02:29:49 AM
Fight the good fight against the banks, I won't get in your way. 

It doesn't make the claim that MSBs can legally aid their clients in structuring to avoid mandatory reporting (among a host of other falsehoods) which is the post I was responding to.

965  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Re: CEO OF BITCOIN EXCHANGE ARRESTED on: January 29, 2014, 02:10:26 AM
Are you trying to point out hypocrisy in the system?  You don't honestly think I am defending the status quo.  The big difference between anyone related with Bitcoin and HSBC is "you" aren't to big to fail or jail.

Sometimes the real world sucks.   I think looking at what HSBC got away with and using it as a business plan is a good way to end up behind bars for a significant portion of your natural life (unless you just happen to have assets in the hundreds of billions of dollars range).
966  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Re: CEO OF BITCOIN EXCHANGE ARRESTED on: January 29, 2014, 02:03:43 AM
I don't think the subject of a SAR is allowed to know that they are...(insert horrible pseudo-reference)

That was my point although horribly phrased.

An MSB is obligated to file a SAR when the transaction meets the criteria.
The MSB is prohibited to notify the client that a SAR has been filed.
Even when directly asked or subpoenaed an MSB is prohibited from indicating if a SAR has or has not been filed.
967  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Re: New York Plans to Introduce "BitLicense" to Make Bitcoin Legal Tender on: January 29, 2014, 01:50:26 AM
"Legal tender is a medium of payment allowed by law or recognized by a legal system to be valid for meeting a financial obligation."


Which has nothing to do with the article.  NY has no plans to make Bitcoin legal tender and baring a war of revolution has no such authority to do so.  It is legal to accept the Euro for payment of goods and services in NY (or just about anywhere in the world).  The Euro is not legal tender in NY (or anywhere in the United States). Making something legal, or regulating the exchange of it, doesn't make it legal tender. NY also regulates the exchanging of dollars into alcoholic beverages.  Is alcohol also legal tender in NY?

See Coinage Act of 1965 (Section 31 U.S.C. 5103).
968  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Re: New York Plans to Introduce "BitLicense" to Make Bitcoin Legal Tender on: January 29, 2014, 01:46:26 AM
Why did you change the title from one which was correct to one which was total nonsense?

The article has nothing to do with legal tender.
969  Bitcoin / Legal / Re: BitInstant CEO arrested by FBI on: January 29, 2014, 12:03:37 AM
Nobody has said selling Bitcoins for cash is illegal.  It might help if you stopped making stuff up and actually read the complaint.

A complaint, by definition, is made up stuff

Even if true, nobody has still claimed selling Bitcoins for cash is illegal.  Even in the "made up complaint" that was never stated.
970  Bitcoin / Legal / Re: BitInstant CEO arrested by FBI on: January 28, 2014, 11:55:22 PM
Nobody has said selling Bitcoins for cash is illegal.  It might help if you stopped making stuff up and actually read the complaint.
971  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Re: CEO OF BITCOIN EXCHANGE ARRESTED on: January 28, 2014, 09:56:52 PM
Advice from Bitinstant to BTCKing to split cash deposits is not illegal itself, in fact thousands of people get their bank accounts blocked for legal things like buying bitcoins. Advising someone to avoid certain things that are legal but also red flags, to avoid unnecessary discussions or account closures, is also not illegal.

Actually it is.  It is called structuring.  An MSB has certain requirements that don't exist for other businesses.   MSB are prohibited from advising their clients how to avoid reporting thresholds, they are prohibited from aiding their clients to structure transactions.  If a client does engage in structuring to avoid AML reporting, KYC requirements, or recordkeeping and the MSB becomes aware of that the MSB is required to treat all structured transactions as if they were a single transaction for various statutory obligations.  They are liable for failing to report transactions, failing to keep accurate books, and for even notifying clients that they have filed a report with FinCEN as required by law.

Everything you described would be a criminal act by an MSB, even if there was no underlying overt act.

My best advice is don't provide advice for things you have not done legal research on.  Someone may believe you and end up in prison as a result.

In such a world, no bank could do business with another, since anyone could be arrested anytime for someone else's mistakes.
There is a huge difference between a financial institution (be it bank or MSB) UNKNOWINGLY processing transactions which are related to a criminal enterprise and doing so in compliance with its own internal AML policies and in accordance with the requirements set by FinCEN.  It is a completely different thing for an entity to KNOWINGLY engage in those transactions, violate its own internal AML policies, assist the criminal client with bypassing AML procedures, and failing to report those transactions to FinCEN.

The complaint doesn't allege the former, it alleges the latter.  For the record I am not saying Charlie is guilty of anything, the complaint is only that a complaint and the allegations until proven are just allegations.  It is up to a jury to decide if the state's ALLEGED charges have merit.  However lets at least start the discussion on what was ACTUALLY alleged and not some fantasy scenario where the prosecution is merely charging him for selling some coin in full compliance with his company's AML program that someone unknown to him later used them in a crime.  That is just 100% BS.
972  Economy / Goods / Re: start the art - abstract paintings for bitcoins on: January 28, 2014, 09:26:33 PM
I received #003 in the series today.  The paintings are even more impressive in person.  They are going to look great in my office.

I do have some bad news to report though.  On one of the pieces the "canvas" (it is hardboard not cloth) partially separated from the fame on one side in shipping.  The other piece had no damage.  I do believe it is easily repairable in such a way that it is undetectable (good wood glue, some wood clamps, and 24 hours to let it set) but I want to get the opinion of the artist before I start messing around.

The advice I would give to Start The Art is packaging, packaging, and more packaging.  International shipments are brutal, the package looked like it came through a war zone, with a hole in one side, and the edge of another side almost torn off (looks like it was taped up to keep it together in transit). Honestly when I first saw the box, my heart sank I really was expecting the worse.  I think I got lucky it was only minorly damaged as it was.  

So "Start The Art" I would take the packing & padding you are using now and add the following:
a) Add more padding between the pieces in multi-piece works.  There was more than enough padding around the pieces but they need more padding between pieces.  In a drop (and yes shippers are going to throw them, kick them, probably accidentally drop them out of moving vehicles) if the frames smash together they are going to get damaged.

b) Double box.  You have to double box.  Things are bad when you use one carrier in one country but when shipments cross borders and they handed from one carrier to another, any sort of care of diligence goes out the window.  The carriers in the middle honestly don't care at all.  Their job is to move the box and if everything inside is reduced to rubble well that doesn't cost them one cent.  The box was barely holding it together when I received it.  So pack the paintings as you did and then put that box inside a slightly larger box with thin layer of padding between the two boxes.

c) Plastic bag/wrap around the paintings & padding.  There was a hole in the box, luckily it either occurred late in the shipment, or it was never exposed to rain but if the box had been rained on in the condition I got it in, the work would have been ruined. Some sort of water barrier is worth the cost.

All together this probably will add $10 (maybe $20) to shipping and handling cost but given the unique nature of the good, and significant price points, I am pretty sure your customers would prefer to pay a few bucks (or bitcents) more and have it get through without problems.

I will post some photos later today if I get the chance.  The artist was a professional to work with, nothing but positive things to say about the deal.  Even with the minor damage I am happy with the purchase.  If Start The Art beefs up his shipping I think he has a real winner in international sales of Bitcoin related art.
973  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Re: CEO OF BITCOIN EXCHANGE ARRESTED on: January 28, 2014, 04:32:21 PM
imagine charly s. was trading apples. they busted him because:

he traded apples for dollars with someone,

who allegedly sold those apples to others,

who allegedly used apples to score drugs from others.

the feds are testing levels of support of the bitcoin community. if they get away with this, they own us. every bitcoin can be traced around some corners to silkroad. you are all criminals because some other people like getting high.  Roll Eyes

You missing the key components intent and knowledge.  In your example no crime has occurred.  The complaint (and yes it is only one side of the story but lets get that side of the story right) alleges that he KNEW the funds were used in criminal transactions AND WITH INTENT he actively broke his own companies policies in order to facilitate those transactions.

Is it true? I don't know, that is what juries are for.  However your example wouldn't even rise to an arrest warrant.  It is a complete and utter non-crime.

BTW: the war on drugs being stupid is a red herring.   The war on drugs IS stupid, massively wasteful, and ultimately pointless however today those laws are on the books.   One can believe the war on drugs is futile and at the same time understand that breaking those laws (no matter how stupid and pointless they may be) has real consequences from the entity with the guns and a monopoly on the use of lawful violence.
974  Bitcoin / Legal / Re: Is an exchange which is 'virtual currency only' a money transmitter? on: January 28, 2014, 04:03:48 PM
Be sure to distinguish between the application of a law and the enforcement of a law.  The laws would still apply.  The question of how they would be enforced (to which I think you were referring) is a different matter.
The law cannot be applied if there is no treaty between U.S. and other country, in which Uncle Sam try to apply it.

Maybe I can be clearer: US Courts will exercise jurisdiction over foreign Bitcoin companies doing business in the United States, regardless of the existence of any treaty with the foreign country.  However, US enforcement agencies may not have the practical ability to seize property, or otherwise affect the business of a foreign entity.

Hope that helps.
Nonsense, they just have no jurisdiction outside USA, despite whatever they say. Otherwise why don't any random european law apply to usa?

How about you provide a legal cite when you say nonsense to one of the most informed lawyer on Bitcoin related issues.

Your post almost could be rephrased "I don't want it to be that way".  As a lawyer once told me, it doesn't matter what you think, the prosecutor thinks, or I think, it only matters what an old guy in a black robe thinks.
Non-US company with bank accounts in non-US countries, operating from non-US country was successfully shut down by the US "Justice" department and the help of foreign countries.   Over half a billion dollars forfeited as the proceeds of a criminal enterprise in violation of US law.   The only "US" aspect, they accepted players from the US.

Mr. Santori's conclusion is spot on as usual.  You might "get away" with it, if the US can't prosecute but you better be 100% sure your nation won't assist the US.  Full Tilt poker was "sure" and they ended up losing everything.

975  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Re: CEO OF BITCOIN EXCHANGE ARRESTED on: January 28, 2014, 02:48:16 AM
This is all theater to scare people.

Shrem is in the good-ole-boy-secret-handshake-club himself, and the charges are completely ridiculous.

Not following FINCEN "guidelines" is not a crime, as there is no law. Even if there was a law, there is no jurisdiction.

Hopefully, some stupid people will sell and give me some cheap buy prices.

Actually not following FINCEN guidelines is one of the criminal charges against him.

Specifically 'failure to report suspicious activity" which can land you in a federal prison for 5 years.

Since he was arrested in New York, there is plenty of jurisdiction.


Actually, guidelines aren't laws, which is why they're called..."GUIDELINES", which is why there can be no real charges. It's either total bullshit theater to scare people (my guess), or the feds are just doing whatever they want with no respect for even their own laws (also plausible).

Jurisdiction has several elements. Merely being in a geographic area doesn't grant jurisdiction.

Well actually there is a law.  It is the BSA (or more correctly "The Currency and Foreign Transactions Reporting Act of 1970").  The BSA gives FinCEN rather wide latitude in determining which institutions fall within its scope, and what regulatory requirements they must meet.
976  Economy / Service Discussion / Re: ***500 BTC Bounty (Nearly $500,000 at mtgox price) *** on: January 28, 2014, 12:26:10 AM
The funniest part is that the "service provider" (aka ponzi provider) values itself at 4x the value of the money supply it is providing services for.  That would be like bitpay valuing itself at $50B or PayPal valuing itself at $80 trillion dollars. 
977  Economy / Service Discussion / Re: Is MtGox dying? on: January 27, 2014, 05:38:47 AM

Great for what? You are a statistics guy. Would you say arb between gox and btc-e is happening right now? If it was, wouldn't the prices be converging not diverging?

There is no arbitrage is you don't get access to your funds for 3 to 7 months.

Imagine a scenario where you sell 1 BTC on MtGox today for $1,000 and it is $900 on Bitstamp.  You finally get your funds out in July and the price on Bitstamp is now $1500, so you can buy back 0.67 BTC.  A 33% loss is not arbitrage.   A worse alternative is the exchange fails before your withdraw is processed and you never get your funds, a 100% loss.

There is no arbitrage opportunity without (near) real time movement of funds.
978  Economy / Speculation / Re: Gox blowing up? $820 vs $120 on: January 27, 2014, 03:45:02 AM
Fiat isn't leaving MtGox otherwise the spread would be decreasing. Fiat is STUCK and Bitcoins can (so far) be easily removed.

So Bitcoins are leaving the exchange which means the same amount of fiat chasing fewer coins and artificially driving the price up.  Of course this isn't anything new however the delays are now reaching 7+ months in some cases and it has been going on for almost a year now.  Nobody still thinks it is a short term problem or there is a fix right around the corner so the more bitcoins leave and the spread widens.
979  Other / Beginners & Help / Re: Instant BTC to USD/PayPal on: January 26, 2014, 03:22:37 AM
980  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Re: Has the NSA already broken bitcoin? on: January 24, 2014, 04:32:46 PM
The point he's making is... related to quantum computing vs bitcoin. Research it ..

Please tell me how quantum annealing can break cryptography.

Hint: it can't
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