First, would you agree with my assessment of anonymity on the internet as a function of ones desire to be anonymous, and there being an analog in Bitcoins anonymity?
No, that is overly simplistic. Bitcoins are anonymous by default. When the creators of bitcoin and others comment about anonymity, they are talking about "hard" anonymity, in that Bitcoins are not anonymous if the transaction reporting a transfer in the blockchain happens while a significantly large portion of the network is being monitored in realtime by a determined attacker. We went through a lot of talk about this when we tried, without success, to find the mybitcoin scammer/hacker who made of with at least 75k bitcions and the allinvain hacker who stole 25k. That kind of hard anonymity is difficult to find "on the internet" outside of tor and i2p networks.
Bitcoins are "soft" anonymous, though, by default. If there is not a determined adversary, trying to piece it together afterwards is difficult. Your assessment is partially correct. After all, if someone has no desire to be anonymous, uses one bitcoin wallet for all transactions, and publishes their identity linked to their wallet, then their bitcoins from that wallet can be tracked more easily.
As to the internet in general, desire is not enough. Technical knowledge is also required. Due to the high intelligence and technical ability of many bitcoin community members, the idea of anonymity being difficult to acquire is scoffed at. However, many people are serving long prison terms for internet crimes right now due to their failure to achieve anonymity while said crimes were committed. None desire more anonymity than a criminal, so the desire to anonymity function is not as simple as you propose.
I realize the potential of cryptocurrency to strip power from various institutions... But am I correct to understand your conclusion as being that states etc. will NOT attempt to regulate the anonymity of its citizens transactions(assuming 'widespread' use of a cryptocurrency). If so could you please elaborate and cite some basis for your belief...
There has been a certain tendency to ignore and destroy the constitution and the bill of rights, especially principles of privacy and liberty. All three branches are guilty of this crime against the people of the U.S. You can choose to predict that this trend will continue, as it has for my entire life. Or you can choose to predict that it will reverse. I predict the latter. People have had enough, it is an election year, and politicians are campaigning on promises to restore personal choice. I tend to think those politicians are lying and have no intention to deliver on their promises, but that is a different thread of conversation. I cite the Tea Party movement, the Arab Spring, the Occupy Wall Street ongoing, growing protests, the angry mobs in Greece, Italy, Spain, and Ireland. The bankruptcy of Iceland.
They spent 50 years forcing us to put our money into banks or else it could be seized with little due process. Then the banks abused the position of power they bought themselves. Now we don't want our money in banks anymore. I cite the price of gold, silver, oil, etc.
Governments have to respond to these things or face the grim prospect of governing without the consent of the governed. I cite the lowest approval rating Congress has ever had since polling began. Obama's rating is in the dump, so is the Supreme Court's. We are looking at less than 50% approval of all three branches of government here. Politicians should respond to that unless they want to operate an openly fascist government. It's time for an about face, everything adds up, so it would be safe to predict one.
Is that far enough from normative for you?
I am grappling with this statement
Trying to strip anonymity from money has been disastrous.
Please expand... i.e. explain the ideal level of anonymity in money(your statement implicitly assumes there is an ideal level)
Read this wikipedia article to get a sense of how far we have fallen from the economic freedom that our grandfathers and great-grandfathers enjoyed, and fought and died for. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Large_denomination_bills_in_U.S._currency
People would be paid in cash, they would keep their savings in cash, and they would only have to go to the bank for big things, like starting an interest-paying account, doing a wire transfer to a brokerage account, or getting a loan.
Nowadays, you can't do anything significant with cash in the U.S. We should have $1000 and $10,000 bills, at least, but we do not due to government regulation.
Let's look at drugs and terrorism, the watchwords the banks pay their lobbyists to have on their lips. (including academics - I cite Inside Job, a great documentary where he gets some gotcha moments on some corrupt professors of economics).
Drug money still gets in to the economy. Where else do you think it goes? You think there is someone with 200 billion dollars in $100 bills somewhere? No, it gets in, but only under the watchful eye of the banker and the politician. All the billions of dollars people spend on drugs in the U.S. does not disappear, it turns into electronic bank deposits.
And terrorism is practically non-existent. It is just fear-mongering, and I roll my eyes every time they say "terrorist financing". It's complete and utter bullshit, representing less than 0.00001% of transactions, being generous to the imaginary deep pockets of imaginary terrorists.
Any time you read someone trotting out the drug and terrorism pony show, you should know that they have a hidden agenda. That's why Schumer, a big dog on the Financial Industry committee, a proto-typical "captured" regulator, has already come out against bitcoin. The banks want sole control of the instant electronic transfer of wealth over great distances. It is the most powerful technology that currently exists and it is used for all sorts of nefarious purposes. Bitcoin allows instant transfer of wealth anywhere in the world without paying the devil his due, so the devil will want to destroy it, of course.
However, the financial industry will lose its power in government. The drug war will draw to a close. Freedom will prevail over tyranny. That's your prediction for the future. And you writing about it and grounding it well can help it be achieved by allowing your peers to see that there is a different way to go than the course plotted by our fathers and grandfathers. They plotted a course for economic disaster and a lack of liberty. We have to plot a different course. What is the point of writing about anything else? Why predict a future that you wouldn't want to live in?