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Author Topic: 2013-12-10 Bitcoin Proves The Libertarian Idea Of Paradise Would Be Hell On Eart  (Read 4011 times)
jinni
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December 11, 2013, 03:22:45 PM
 #1

http://www.businessinsider.com/bitcoin-libertarian-paradise-would-be-hell-on-earth-2013-12

Quote from: Business Insider
So the Bitcoin experience gives us a glimpse of Libertarian paradise: What life would be like with as little government interference as possible, in a market free of burdensome laws and taxes.

Unfortunately, that experience looks like a total nightmare. It's characterized by radical instability, chaos, the rise of a boss-class of criminals who assassinate people they don't like, and a mass handover of wealth to a minority even smaller than the 1% that currently lauds it in the United States.

If Bitcoin was a country — Bitcoinistan? — it would be like Somalia.
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December 11, 2013, 03:30:01 PM
 #2

While their reasoning is a little simplistic, they do have a point! ;-)

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December 11, 2013, 03:40:11 PM
 #3

Sounds like a threat. "If this succeeds, we can make sure you're all begging for the rich plutocracy to come back and save you [from the warlord criminal class acting under orders, financing and resourcing from the rich plutocrats themselves]"

That sort of argument forgets that these people (plutocrats and crimewave instigators alike) won't be as well resourced as they'd like to assume.

Vires in numeris
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December 11, 2013, 03:59:33 PM
 #4

This article feels like it's 2012 all over again.
Faith in humanity restored after reading the comments.
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December 11, 2013, 04:14:12 PM
 #5

Quote
Unfortunately, that experience looks like a total nightmare. It's characterized by radical instability, chaos, the rise of a boss-class of criminals who assassinate people they don't like, and a mass handover of wealth to a minority even smaller than the 1% that currently lauds it in the United States.

1. Instability - was there any?
2. Chaos - not much right now
3. Criminal class - I would say that the share of criminals among the bictoiners is much lower than that among the bankers.
4. Wealthy minority - Well... don't get jealous. Had you purchased the BTCs when they were $0.06 a piece, then you'd have been wealthy too.

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December 11, 2013, 04:19:37 PM
 #6

I like the argument they're making although I don't agree with. I've always wondered if true anarchy would be like Somalia, and if development and prosperity necessarily needs a state or a proto-state like big corporations.

When reading the argument about assassinations though it made me laugh, because governments are doing that already, probably also big corporations. And personally I don't like it more if a state commits murder than if a wealthy private individual commits murder, it is both a gross and a crass way of handling things in addition to being straight out despicable.

Another interesting thing is inequality. In my opinion extreme inequality often leads to disastrous consequences, regardless of the political regime. I mean, Bitcoin is great for redistributing wealth to a younger, more tech-savvy, and in my impression more liberal (in a general context, not the American political party) generation - which is great. But even so power corrupts, and being wealthy might make these early adopter types into a new type of plutocrat that become as bad if not worse than the current one.

Basically, the Bitcoin technology does not address the issue of unequal distribution of wealth. Or does it? If not, what can be done about that?
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December 11, 2013, 04:25:02 PM
 #7

Quote from: Business Insider
If Bitcoin was a country — Bitcoinistan? — it would be like Somalia.

It would have the size of principality of sealand you mean  
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December 11, 2013, 06:20:09 PM
 #8

Basically, the Bitcoin technology does not address the issue of unequal distribution of wealth. Or does it? If not, what can be done about that?

Education.

And not just any education, I learned economics all through my school years and never once did anything we cover monetary theory. I also frequently consumed any economics or financial oriented journalism or documentary, and only through youtube did I ever find anything that filled the gap (Neil Ferguson's "Ascent of Money"). And even that covered it from a very status quo sort of angle.

And a complete cultural change is what's really needed, because this culture encourages everyone to be superficial, acquisitive, accredited/authorised, vain and introspective ("selfie", ugh), and dependent (both on government and on social groups). It discourages the self-determined (in both thought and profession), critical thinking, independence, and above all questioning authorised or established views. And this culture achieves this result through the newspapers, history books, school textbooks, school curriculum, advertising, television and movies, the list probably contains even more subtle examples than I can contemplate.

Really, the current class of rich plutocrats are in that position through a mixture of nepotism, gangsterism, and not least the careful propagandising and cultivating of this era's version of the serf class. Bitcoin plutocrats will be mostly made up of people that used self-determination of one form or another to attain that status, so their values won't be quite so easily corrupted as they got there through merit. And those who adopt cryptocurrency last will still benefit from some inevitable cultural changes: hard money will bring better quality of goods, more political power to the individual, improved long-term capacity to save, more transparent finances from governmental bodies and businesses, plus a whole host of ancillary benefits from taking the model of a decentralised database validated by proof of work and applying it to other aspects of the way communities and societies organise themselves (this will be the absolute game changer, our future lives will be very different using this data storage tool that we've been gifted).

It's a shame that these journalists are throwing fits of luddite rage, instead of learning and disseminating about how this will eventually be nothing short of a technologically driven revolution. But then again, I guess their response is truly representative of the worst aspects of this culture that I disparage above, they'll not be fit for such a change until they realise that their position in life is no longer as certain as they once became so comfortable with.

Vires in numeris
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December 11, 2013, 06:55:30 PM
 #9

Basically, the Bitcoin technology does not address the issue of unequal distribution of wealth. Or does it? If not, what can be done about that?

Education.




people, once they have power, all generally all the same. nothing will change

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December 11, 2013, 07:28:06 PM
 #10

Basically, the Bitcoin technology does not address the issue of unequal distribution of wealth. Or does it? If not, what can be done about that?

Education.




people, once they have power, all generally all the same. nothing will change

Not always true. Alot of powerful people in the 20th and 21st century that wished to use their power for the good of others were assassinated.

Vires in numeris
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December 11, 2013, 08:36:33 PM
 #11


Basically, the Bitcoin technology does not address the issue of unequal distribution of wealth. Or does it? If not, what can be done about that?

btw, I had allready tried to start some brainstorming about this issue. Though my idea was prob a bit of inocent (lack of tec. knowledge), it was meant to start to debate a solution:
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=355999.0

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December 11, 2013, 08:40:57 PM
 #12


people, once they have power, all generally all the same. nothing will change

:-)

The solution then is to not give people power over others.  They have power over themselves and no one else.  Then if they mess up or do something, they pay the price.  When people in power screw up today, everyone in the political jurisdiction pays the price.
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December 11, 2013, 08:56:38 PM
 #13


people, once they have power, all generally all the same. nothing will change

:-)

The solution then is to not give people power over others. 

resource-based economy? or just ignoring the fact that money is power?

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December 11, 2013, 10:46:31 PM
Last edit: December 11, 2013, 11:16:44 PM by jinni
 #14

Basically, the Bitcoin technology does not address the issue of unequal distribution of wealth. Or does it? If not, what can be done about that?

Education.

And not just any education, I learned economics all through my school years and never once did anything we cover monetary theory. I also frequently consumed any economics or financial oriented journalism or documentary, and only through youtube did I ever find anything that filled the gap (Neil Ferguson's "Ascent of Money"). And even that covered it from a very status quo sort of angle.

I agree wholeheartedly. Especially the part about not just any. Personally, I believe that being put in an institution with the stated aim of learning is akin to putting a sane man in an insane asylum to get well. Humans are designed in a way that they automatically spend all their time learning, as long as you don't meddle too much and break them into pieces - something an institution is perfectly designed to do. I'm not providing a cure-all, but if you shut down the gulags that most children are sent to (schools) and where they have to do meaningless forced labour is the first step.

And a complete cultural change is what's really needed, because this culture encourages everyone to be superficial, acquisitive, accredited/authorised, vain and introspective ("selfie", ugh), and dependent (both on government and on social groups). It discourages the self-determined (in both thought and profession), critical thinking, independence, and above all questioning authorised or established views. And this culture achieves this result through the newspapers, history books, school textbooks, school curriculum, advertising, television and movies, the list probably contains even more subtle examples than I can contemplate.

Again your observations are to the point. Culture is key, a collaborative culture that encourages critical thinking, curiosity and self-expression is what is needed. I don't know how to make such a culture blossom, but I do believe that removing or reducing support structures (like governments) will make it a necessity for most people to develop these traits.

Really, the current class of rich plutocrats are in that position through a mixture of nepotism, gangsterism, and not least the careful propagandising and cultivating of this era's version of the serf class. Bitcoin plutocrats will be mostly made up of people that used self-determination of one form or another to attain that status, so their values won't be quite so easily corrupted as they got there through merit. And those who adopt cryptocurrency last will still benefit from some inevitable cultural changes: hard money will bring better quality of goods, more political power to the individual, improved long-term capacity to save, more transparent finances from governmental bodies and businesses, plus a whole host of ancillary benefits from taking the model of a decentralised database validated by proof of work and applying it to other aspects of the way communities and societies organise themselves (this will be the absolute game changer, our future lives will be very different using this data storage tool that we've been gifted).
I commend you on your optimistic view of humanity. Yes, hard money will bring benefits to the people who are more in tune with the cultural aspects discussed above. It will be up to the new meritocratic Bitcoin plutocrats to use their power benevolently, but the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Simply wanting to do good is not a prerequisite for achieving positive results. But a prerequisite for achieving good if you want to do good is critical thinking. This has the potential to help a lot of people, and early adopters of Bitcoin should be above-average skilled at this.

However, how do you propose to help those vast amounts of headless chickens that are so far gone that the likelihood that they will ever be able to think critically and do anything else than do what they are told is close to nil?

It's a shame that these journalists are throwing fits of luddite rage, instead of learning and disseminating about how this will eventually be nothing short of a technologically driven revolution. But then again, I guess their response is truly representative of the worst aspects of this culture that I disparage above, they'll not be fit for such a change until they realise that their position in life is no longer as certain as they once became so comfortable with.

While I do agree that one is never absolved from personal responsibility, I'm always skeptical of criticizing journalists. It is like criticizing Germans who didn't rebel against Nazi Germany, or to use a less used up comparison, Americans who keep supporting their military-industrial complex overtly or tacitly. Ethically it is wrong, and everybody has a personal responsibility, but in the end it is easily exploitable aspects of human psychology that make it possible for the plutocrats to continue with their agenda. In essence the journalists you are criticizing are just the same as the public that swallows the bullshit journalists write. The people who are ultimately more responsible are the people at the top. Journalists are simply brainwashed worker-bees like most other people, and if they refuse to work (as they should, if they want to make a moral choice), they will simply be replaced by average unemployed Joe that knows how to copy-write semi-understandable hogwash. Blaming the journalists is playing right into the hands of the plutocrats want (edit: by removing the focus on them, i.e. don't shoot the messenger).
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December 12, 2013, 12:16:25 AM
 #15

@jinni

As for how to make this cultural change, I think the dominant culture is heading for some serious shake ups, whithout these new ways of applying cryptography playing any part. And so when we're heading for a state of flux, of a distinct breakdown in the way the world is run, the stage couldn't be set any better for these new ideas to grip the imagination of the bold, the intelligent and the courageous from this current generation.

I think that the new applications for cryptographic proofs stored in a distributed database, such is the broad category that bitcoin comes under, will do so much to help level the playing field. We can take all the administrative powers of these officials and their functions and do it all ourselves, and the result will be a better system, that provably does the job better than any army of box-ticking government administrators possibly can.

What they're talking about on the development and project forums here on Bitcointalk is really pretty exciting. We can create blockchain style document stores. We can use the blockchain we have to store identification tokens. We can combine these two technologies to actually take all useful power away from the state, all because the computer system can do it better, with zero need for a pair of eyes to look it over to approve. The only real reason that we allow the state to perform all the various functions of record keeping that they are currently doing is because we trust them to produce and maintain all the official documents and records they currently do; birth certificates, death certificates, marriage certificates, drivers licenses, passports, educational attainment certificates, medical records (well, in some countries), all the various professional licenses that exist variously depending on the country. We trust them to set up the procedures and systems to keep the validity of these records up to a decent standard, and they're often the people you can best trust to do it, as it's only in the states best interest to do this job well (as their reward is a productive economy and healthy society that delivers the taxes that pay them, and pay for all their various public works and the corruption that keeps them at the top of the food chain). Any private entity has too narrow an agenda, the monolithic state as a whole has the best incentive to do the job reliably.

But of course, we can now automate the job of the validating of information, that's what cryptocurrency has now demonstrated to us. It's a system that automates and validates the good operation of a money system. We can do that for everything else (although it will take a bit more technological development in other fields to do all of it...). And we can do it qualitatively better than they can, as just like with the way bitcoin has been designed, we can create systems that are designed to make the good design decisions about the system and stick to them. And the fact that they work that way can literally and definitively be proven for anyone who has the desire to educate themselves to a level to be capable of assessing the proof, that the rules are not being or cannot be broken. This is so powerful, because now we can choose to validate all sorts of publicly used records and systems this way, and also keep the information more reliably private, again just like bitcoin. Right now, a whole list of our school records, medical information, interests and motivations and social circles (or at least those expressed in our web browsing history), our phone conversations, our skillsets and our proficiency in them, they can all be brought together to psychologically profile us for the purposes of the state. We can take that ability back from them, and the recent wikileaks revelations has blown that public debate wide open. If we can show the world that decentralising and cryptographically asserting the validity of all information is in everyone's best interest, then the state starts to look really irrelevant in many ways. Why, as a Syrian or Irish customs official, would you trust a Saudi or a British passport holder issued by those respective governments in a post-crypto world? I would sooner trust a DNA fingerprint stored on a public document database, cryptographically signed by an ID in the blockchain created with a high value fee. The beauty of that mechanism cannot be overstated, the world would be a very different place.

Headless chickens? Compliant worker bees? Possibly not in journalism, but certainly in the sprawl of government administrative offices, they'd be out of a job. And maybe it might be easy to herd some of those people into similarly pernicious roles that satisfy their temperament for an easy, well-paid  life without any challenges. But so many would be forced into coming up with a more creative solution to their unemployment, I wonder what they might be capable of when forced to think. I'd like to remain optimistic like that until these trends begin, but remember who the initial guinea pigs will be for this: people who work in banks and financial services. The beginnings of that change doesn't seem so far off in the future.

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December 12, 2013, 12:38:01 AM
 #16

The real problem is the evoirement , its called "the impossible hamster"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sqwd_u6HkMo THIS is what will kill us.
The bitcoin is a depth free currency , and basicly is the ONLY way out! , a defaltionary economy witch is recource based will be proffitable , because prices will lower and people will only spend when needed,
It will inflate purchasing power instead of deflatng it , saving will be a good thig instead of lending,
guys its the only way out of this mess we are in now.

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December 12, 2013, 07:16:52 AM
 #17

http://www.businessinsider.com/bitcoin-libertarian-paradise-would-be-hell-on-earth-2013-12

Quote from: Business Insider
So the Bitcoin experience gives us a glimpse of Libertarian paradise: What life would be like with as little government interference as possible, in a market free of burdensome laws and taxes.

Unfortunately, that experience looks like a total nightmare. It's characterized by radical instability, chaos, the rise of a boss-class of criminals who assassinate people they don't like, and a mass handover of wealth to a minority even smaller than the 1% that currently lauds it in the United States.

If Bitcoin was a country — Bitcoinistan? — it would be like Somalia.

Somalia:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qtGkTRnocZI
oakpacific
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December 12, 2013, 07:19:49 AM
 #18

Yeah, those god-damn activists on the street are certainly  going to kill the stability of the nation blahblahblah, how many times have I heard that? Sounds like an argument Chinese communist party routinely employs.


The technology is  out there in the field, if you don't learn and evolve, you will get killed regardless, the bad guys will get there in warp speed, why don't you just learn and evolve then? Not because you are too fat and lazy I hope?

https://tlsnotary.org/ Fraud proofing decentralized fiat-Bitcoin trading.
Mike Christ
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December 12, 2013, 07:20:57 AM
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beetcoin
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December 12, 2013, 07:22:14 AM
 #20

While their reasoning is a little simplistic, they do have a point! ;-)

to me, anarchistic ideology is a bit too simplistic. i get a lot of retorts, when they can't respond to my assertions, of "well government does that too." it's like saying you want to replace a faulty system with a faulty system.

oh, and "arming everyone with guns" is probably not going to be a panacea for world issues. someone told me that in doing so, you could prevent a big player from militarily overtaking certain regions.
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