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Author Topic: If Bitcoin is made illegal...  (Read 3061 times)
alexanderanon
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June 07, 2011, 06:02:52 PM
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...it will thrive regardless. Think about it. If it is made illegal, then sure, you won't be able to use Bitcoins to buy products from Amazon anytime soon, but the black market is HUGE. Think of all the drug lords who would benefit from anonymous (via Tor), instantaneous transactions, let alone the benefits of Silk Road. Many of you may not be interested in drug purchases, but we are all interested in the value of our bitcoins. The price of bitcoins will skyrocket once these major players get involved, and then it will only be a matter of time before non-black market products can be bought as well.

Once the lollerdollar collapses (and potentially other world currencies), I can see confidence in governments dropping significantly, opening the door for businesses dealing in consumer products, food, everyday items, etc., to start accepting bitcoins regardless of government laws.

I think we all know why Bitcoin has been hung up around $18-19 for as long as it has. It's the fear of governments making it illegal. Am I the only one who thinks that this is irrelevant?
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June 07, 2011, 06:04:13 PM
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Then I am a criminal?  Sweet !

as for why it's hung up.  My guess is new money trying to get in to the market via paypal is now on hold. Plus lag time from bank to dwollar in to Mt.Gox.  It'll bump.

Hell if they declare it illegal, I think people would buy it because it was declared illegal.

and who is 'They' anyway.  Bilderburg?

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June 07, 2011, 06:09:11 PM
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I think we all know why Bitcoin has been hung up around $18-19 for as long as it has. It's the fear of governments making it illegal. Am I the only one who thinks that this is irrelevant?

The lull in price movements is a cyclic event that occurs naturally, and likely has nothing at all to do with the threat of government action.  If the bitcoin market cared what Schumer thought about bitcoins, then the trade volume would have spiked and the price dropped as the fearful tried to exit.  The stable price between $18-$19 started before Schumer's threats, and indicates that the bitcoin market just doesn't really care.

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
adrian33
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June 07, 2011, 06:22:56 PM
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The world is not just the USA. Bitcoin is global. It will only hurt the US if they make it illegal, I think. Some other country will pick up the slack in reduced bitcoin activity.

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June 07, 2011, 06:33:43 PM
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Hmmm...in all the recent articles and discussions I've read about bitcoin, I haven't heard much about what The Establishment really CAN do about bitcoin. It doesn't make sense to me that the Lords of the Universe will go down with a whimper. I heard on Hiro White's poscast just a few ways that governments could attack bitcoin. They could dominate the mining of bitcoin greater than 50%. They could make illegal the video cards used to optimally mine bitcoin. They could DDOS bitcoin sites. They could force ISPs to block bitcoin activity. They could imprison and even assassinate bitcoin leaders.
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June 07, 2011, 06:38:59 PM
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There are a lot of things that they could do, the question is, would these methods be effictive.  Probably not, in the long run, if the successes of the "War on (some) Drugs" and the persecution of p2p filesharing are any indicator.  That doesn't mean that the thugs can't hurt some people in the near term, though.

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
alexanderanon
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June 07, 2011, 06:41:53 PM
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I know that the USA=/=the world, but Europe and the rest of the world is even more statist than the US and prone to banning threats to government financial power, so if fear of bitcoin prompts the US to ban it, I don't see why this fear wouldn't also be present in the other governments of the world.

As for the cyclical growth, I can see a lull for a day or two as people try to cash in a bit on the big spike, but more than a few days suggests to me that the threat of gov't action is more of an issue than you suggest, especially when the numbers of people learning about Bitcoin is surely following an exponential curve. The more veteran Bitcoin users can dismiss this threat more readily, I think, but the newer bitcoin users are those that are less and less knowledgeable on cyptocurrency economics, and would thus be more fearful of gov't action. If it is merely a technical lull, it would have to jump by 10 dollars or more in the next few days.

And to the last two posters: The government can't do anything to Bitcoin itself, but by making it illegal, it prevents the growth of bitcoin into the mainstream. Forget buying anything on Amazon while this government ban lasts.
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June 07, 2011, 06:43:57 PM
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I know that the USA=/=the world, but Europe and the rest of the world is even more statist than the US and prone to banning threats to government financial power, so if fear of bitcoin prompts the US to ban it, I don't see why this fear wouldn't also be present in the other governments of the world.

As for the cyclical growth, I can see a lull for a day or two as people try to cash in a bit on the big spike, but more than a few days suggests to me that the threat of gov't action is more of an issue than you suggest, especially when the numbers of people learning about Bitcoin is surely following an exponential curve. The more veteran Bitcoin users can dismiss this threat more readily, I think, but the newer bitcoin users are those that are less and less knowledgeable on cyptocurrency economics, and would thus be more fearful of gov't action. If it is merely a technical lull, it would have to jump by 10 dollars or more in the next few days.

And to the last two posters: The government can't do anything to Bitcoin itself, but by making it illegal, it prevents the growth of bitcoin into the mainstream. Forget buying anything on Amazon while this government ban lasts.

We've had lulls that lasted for months.  A couple days is meaningless.

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
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June 07, 2011, 06:50:20 PM
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The world is not just the USA. Bitcoin is global. It will only hurt the US if they make it illegal, I think. Some other country will pick up the slack in reduced bitcoin activity.

Don't underestimate the desire (or ability) of the US government to control the world.

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June 07, 2011, 08:34:03 PM
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To everyone who thinks bitcoin is undestructible, here is a plausible scenario:

The US or IWF or G8 members or whoever will produce a ruling in which they define a minimum set of auditing requirements for taxable electronic transactions (or some mumbo jumbo of that kind). It will not be targeted at bitcoin directly... but will affect it.

They will forbid to offer any service using "unapproved means of transaction", making it virtually impossible to spend bitcoins on anything publicly advertised.

Forget your point-of-sale initiatives or online shops within any G8 country then. Sure, you could order from some other country, but how do you offer your services if you live in the USA, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Switzerland etc? Tor? You sure won't be able to put up a sign "We accept bitcoins". You won't be able to write it on your homepage.

Of course bitcoin will live on, but how the hell do you want to build a working economy based on bitcoins in the western world? Pretend everyone starts using tor when looking for services?
mewantsbitcoins
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June 07, 2011, 08:36:03 PM
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What if downloading torrents is made illegal... Oh, wait..
Sandoz
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June 07, 2011, 08:38:59 PM
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What if downloading torrents is made illegal... Oh, wait..

Business is not like downloading movies: if you want to sell a service you need visibility. If for everyone visible it is forbidden to use bitcoins it's going to be difficult...
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June 07, 2011, 08:43:31 PM
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What if downloading torrents is made illegal... Oh, wait..

Business is not like downloading movies: if you want to sell a service you need visibility. If for everyone visible it is forbidden to use bitcoins it's going to be difficult...

More difficult, yes.  Businesses in Africa won't care that bitcoins are illegal for businesses in the United States, or if they do, they will be happy about it because they will get a monopoly capture advantage that they didn't have to lobby for.  Internet sales are largely unaffected by the location of the business.  For that matter, the business could be in some small country in Africa, next to the servers; while the products are shipped by a standard dropshipping agency in the United States.  Win-Win!

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
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June 07, 2011, 08:47:38 PM
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I think we all know why Bitcoin has been hung up around $18-19 for as long as it has. It's the fear of governments making it illegal. Am I the only one who thinks that this is irrelevant?

Long? It's been a few days... You can't expect huge increases in exchange rates to keep up day in, day out.

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Sandoz
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June 07, 2011, 08:56:44 PM
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More difficult, yes.  Businesses in Africa won't care that bitcoins are illegal for businesses in the United States, or if they do, they will be happy about it because they will get a monopoly capture advantage that they didn't have to lobby for.  Internet sales are largely unaffected by the location of the business.  For that matter, the business could be in some small country in Africa, next to the servers; while the products are shipped by a standard dropshipping agency in the United States.  Win-Win!

I agree that bitcoin could have a great future in certain countries. And there, I hope, it will lead by example and make it impossible to reject in the west. I even think we should actively push bitcoin in specific countries. Should greece drop the euro we NEED to push bitcoin over there as the next currency WILL go for massive devaluation. That's a huge opportunity.

But I just warn you that it will be rough in most western countries!
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June 07, 2011, 09:50:50 PM
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...it will thrive regardless. Think about it. If it is made illegal, then sure, you won't be able to use Bitcoins to buy products from Amazon anytime soon, but the black market is HUGE. Think of all the drug lords who would benefit from anonymous (via Tor), instantaneous transactions, let alone the benefits of Silk Road. Many of you may not be interested in drug purchases, but we are all interested in the value of our bitcoins. The price of bitcoins will skyrocket once these major players get involved, and then it will only be a matter of time before non-black market products can be bought as well.

Once the lollerdollar collapses (and potentially other world currencies), I can see confidence in governments dropping significantly, opening the door for businesses dealing in consumer products, food, everyday items, etc., to start accepting bitcoins regardless of government laws.

I think we all know why Bitcoin has been hung up around $18-19 for as long as it has. It's the fear of governments making it illegal. Am I the only one who thinks that this is irrelevant?

That is the knee-jerk reaction, making it illegal. In my view, that will backfire.

The proper course of action is to integrate it into society at large. There are huge benefits from having a decentralized, real currency like Bitcoin. It can drive individual freedom and responsibility to an unprecedented level.

Personally, I think it's a God-send.
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June 07, 2011, 11:03:12 PM
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The world is not just the USA. Bitcoin is global. It will only hurt the US if they make it illegal, I think. Some other country will pick up the slack in reduced bitcoin activity.

Don't underestimate the desire (or ability) of the US government to control the world.

Don't overestimate the ability of the US government to control the world. As we could see, the Playstation Network had to go offline in order for them to find Bin Laden.

 Smiley
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June 17, 2011, 07:19:19 PM
 #18

Criminalising Bitcoin won't stop criminals from using it.  

It will only stop honest people from using it.

Then we are going to live in a world where, de facto, financial privacy and free trade is a priviledge enjoyed only by criminals, but not by honest people.

This will make criminals wealthier and more powerful than they would have been in a world where bitcoin was legal.

Somebody should explain this to these politicians.

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June 17, 2011, 07:33:17 PM
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This is what's going to happen if government goes down that road:

1. Bitcoin client is made illegal.  People create alternative clients.

2. Bitcoin protocol is made illegal. People start new block chains with slightly modified protocols.

3. ALL "crypocurrencies" are made illegal. People start using Namecoin as a currency.

4. Namecoin is made illegal. People start using other BitX projects as currencies.

5. ALL technologies that use a proof-of-work block chain are made illegal, even if they are not designed to be currencies.  People start using other digital commodities that are not based on proof of work blockchains, such as Ripple or OpenTransactions.

6. ALL techologies that could potentially be used as a digital currency are made illegal.  This legislation would be so overarching that it would destroy stuff like WoW and Facebook.

7. Country loses competitive edge against countries that don't impose draconian restrictions on innovation.  

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June 17, 2011, 07:35:41 PM
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This is what's going to happen if government goes down that road:

1. Bitcoin client is made illegal.  People create alternative clients.

2. Bitcoin protocol is made illegal. People start new block chains with slightly modified protocols.

3. ALL "crypocurrencies" are made illegal. People start using Namecoin as a currency.

4. Namecoin is made illegal. People start using other BitX projects as currencies.

5. ALL technologies that use a proof-of-work block chain are made illegal, even if they are not designed to be currencies.  People start using other digital commodities that are not based on proof of work blockchains, such as Ripple or OpenTransactions.

6. ALL techologies that could potentially be used as a digital currency are made illegal.  This legislation would be so overarching that it would include stuff like WoW and Facebook.

7. Country loses competitive edge against countries that don't impose draconian restrictions on innovation. 

AMEN!
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