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Author Topic: The Bitcoin Crooks are not Who We Thought They Were  (Read 5631 times)
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February 28, 2014, 08:39:23 PM
 #21

When I bought a small amount in Bitcoins a few years ago, I was very careful to read up on how to keep them safe and secure from hackers. I used long (very long) passwords, created my paper wallets on offline Linux machines, set up two-factor authentication for my exchange accounts, and kept all my backups encrypted. I did all this because I thought I knew who the crooks were. The crooks were hackers trying to take my Bitcoins for themselves.

The problem was that I was protecting myself against the wrong threat. The hackers weren't nearly as much of a threat as the people who thought they could get rich running fiscally irresponsible exchange businesses and insecure trading platforms. These people might not have intended to steal, but the end result is that they did.

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I do not wish to divulge how much money I lost, but I will say that I have lost 90% of it. The only money I have left in Bitcoins is what I had on Bitstamp from selling XRP.

I began to realize this when the Bitfloor exchange, which had around 50% of my Bitcoins shut down.

This doesn't make sense. If you used very long passwords, created your paper wallets on offline Linux machines, and kept all your backups encrypted, then why did you put 50% of your Bitcoins on the Bitfloor exchange?

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Of course Mt.Gox was an established exchange, they were registered, had proven security, and were experienced in carefully managed accounting practices. Mt.Gox wasn't another Bitfloor, or so I thought.

WTF? The only part of your statement that is mildly true is that Mt.Gox was an established exchange. Where were they registered? They had proven BAD security (see 2011 hack), and were obviously inexperienced in accounting (see 2013 withdrawal problems).

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When Mt.Gox said they were shutting down withdrawals to manage a bug in the Bitcoin software which by all accounts should have been easy to deal with securely, my first reaction after outrage was that something wasn't right.

If I ran an exchange, I wouldn't think of shutting down for a month or two while we rewrite our software and cut customer's off from their money while I do so. No! It's not my money. Just as I argued that Bitfloor should have manually sent out money in BTC form if requested, Mt.Gox should have allowed transfers to a working exchange like Bitstamp. What? That would hurt their business? That's their problem. As a businessman in the industry of handling other people's money, your first priority is to meet obligations to your customers.

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As another side note, did MtGox really think anyone would trust them after they shut down withdrawals? They were dead from the moment they did so.

As another side note, did MtGox really anything anyone would trust them after they were hacked in 2011? They were dead from the moment that happened.

Oh, wait...

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MtGox and it's CEO grossly mismanaged funds in what should have been a very easy business in which to remain solvent. Look at the cash flow these people had! Apparently, however, they either mismanaged their funds or were negligent in security. It's one or the other. An exchange business doesn't lose almost ALL of its Bitcoins unless either its security or it's business practices are beyond horrible.

There's also no proof that they didn't falsify volumes (or give some people perpetual free trading to boost volumes).

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I genuinely think this might be another Enron.

It's still very early days in Bitcoin. Enron had revenues exceeding $100 billion - with a "B"!

What name would you give to the smallest unit of bitcoin (0.00000001)? sat. What name would you give to 100 sats? bit. 1 bit = 1 uBTC. 1,000,000 bits = 1 BTC. It's bits
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February 28, 2014, 08:48:40 PM
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It amazes me that people don't realize that the crooks in any society or financial arrangement are the business owners not the individuals. Think about all the businesses that have fucked you over in your life. I can name three without giving it much thought (Best Buy, Albertsons and PayPal). Then think of all the individual people that have fucked you over as an adult. I can think of one and he was family (never loan money to family). Businesses by their very design are out to take as much money from you as they can. Bitcoin just gives them an easier way to do that by allowing them to hide behind legal obscurity. Gox is going to do what so many businesses have done in the past and hide behind bankruptcy laws. The reason mainstream financial institutions, like banks, have government protections, like the FDIC, is because their mistakes fuck over so many individuals that people cry for a solution. Libtards forget that those protections are there because people need them, want them and demand them. Pirate@40 fucked over a bunch of people and the first thing they did was run to the government to fix it. I'd like to feel sorry for your loss but that's impossible because you did it to yourself by trusting an unregulated business with your money. Regulations may not always work but at least they provide some incentive to business owners to at least contact you back and try to fix it before you tattle on them.

Again, you are focusing on proximate causes not ultimate causes. The ultimate cause for the corruption you perceive in large businesses is exactly the same cause for the corruption seen in governments by others - centralization.

And even when the businesses themselves are not corrupt, the external crooks are attracted to them for the same reason - concentration of wealth and power.

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February 28, 2014, 08:55:21 PM
 #23

It amazes me that people don't realize that the crooks in any society or financial arrangement are the business owners not the individuals. Think about all the businesses that have fucked you over in your life. I can name three without giving it much thought (Best Buy, Albertsons and PayPal). Then think of all the individual people that have fucked you over as an adult. I can think of one and he was family (never loan money to family). Businesses by their very design are out to take as much money from you as they can. Bitcoin just gives them an easier way to do that by allowing them to hide behind legal obscurity. Gox is going to do what so many businesses have done in the past and hide behind bankruptcy laws. The reason mainstream financial institutions, like banks, have government protections, like the FDIC, is because their mistakes fuck over so many individuals that people cry for a solution. Libtards forget that those protections are there because people need them, want them and demand them. Pirate@40 fucked over a bunch of people and the first thing they did was run to the government to fix it. I'd like to feel sorry for your loss but that's impossible because you did it to yourself by trusting an unregulated business with your money. Regulations may not always work but at least they provide some incentive to business owners to at least contact you back and try to fix it before you tattle on them.

Again, you are focusing on proximate causes not ultimate causes. The ultimate cause for the corruption you perceive in large businesses is exactly the same cause for the corruption seen in governments by others - centralization.

And even when the businesses themselves are not corrupt, the external crooks are attracted to them for the same reason - concentration of wealth and power.

Of course, that's why you regulate them to death and insure the results. Insurance goes a long way toward solving problems. Centralization isn't a dirty word. Society is centralized. We live together, play together, fuck each other, have babies and start the cycle over again. We don't live in caves 50 miles apart anymore. Even an organization as small as a nuclear family has regulations governing everyone's role in the organization and punitive actions for misbehavior. 

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February 28, 2014, 09:26:22 PM
 #24

What if I had my entire college fund in MtGox or Bitfloor? What these people have done is shameful.

Technically speaking, you'd be considered batsh*t crazy to put all your funds into a 3 year old experiment titled "Bitcoin" with still unknown origins and an unknown future. Considering stability, security and risk vs. reward, you'd even be better off playing Casino Royale on Wall St. with some levered 3rd world subprime mortgage derivates Tongue

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February 28, 2014, 09:27:45 PM
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It amazes me that people don't realize that the crooks in any society or financial arrangement are the business owners not the individuals. Think about all the businesses that have fucked you over in your life. I can name three without giving it much thought (Best Buy, Albertsons and PayPal). Then think of all the individual people that have fucked you over as an adult. I can think of one and he was family (never loan money to family). Businesses by their very design are out to take as much money from you as they can. Bitcoin just gives them an easier way to do that by allowing them to hide behind legal obscurity. Gox is going to do what so many businesses have done in the past and hide behind bankruptcy laws. The reason mainstream financial institutions, like banks, have government protections, like the FDIC, is because their mistakes fuck over so many individuals that people cry for a solution. Libtards forget that those protections are there because people need them, want them and demand them. Pirate@40 fucked over a bunch of people and the first thing they did was run to the government to fix it. I'd like to feel sorry for your loss but that's impossible because you did it to yourself by trusting an unregulated business with your money. Regulations may not always work but at least they provide some incentive to business owners to at least contact you back and try to fix it before you tattle on them.

Again, you are focusing on proximate causes not ultimate causes. The ultimate cause for the corruption you perceive in large businesses is exactly the same cause for the corruption seen in governments by others - centralization.

And even when the businesses themselves are not corrupt, the external crooks are attracted to them for the same reason - concentration of wealth and power.

Of course, that's why you regulate them to death and insure the results. Insurance goes a long way toward solving problems. Centralization isn't a dirty word. Society is centralized. We live together, play together, fuck each other, have babies and start the cycle over again. We don't live in caves 50 miles apart anymore. Even an organization as small as a nuclear family has regulations governing everyone's role in the organization and punitive actions for misbehavior. 

no more insurance, you have insurance fraud and stuff.  I like the idea of a free-for-all, everyone being cynical and protect their own interest, that's how capitalism works.
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February 28, 2014, 09:34:34 PM
 #26

It amazes me that people don't realize that the crooks in any society or financial arrangement are the business owners not the individuals. Think about all the businesses that have fucked you over in your life. I can name three without giving it much thought (Best Buy, Albertsons and PayPal). Then think of all the individual people that have fucked you over as an adult. I can think of one and he was family (never loan money to family). Businesses by their very design are out to take as much money from you as they can. Bitcoin just gives them an easier way to do that by allowing them to hide behind legal obscurity. Gox is going to do what so many businesses have done in the past and hide behind bankruptcy laws. The reason mainstream financial institutions, like banks, have government protections, like the FDIC, is because their mistakes fuck over so many individuals that people cry for a solution. Libtards forget that those protections are there because people need them, want them and demand them. Pirate@40 fucked over a bunch of people and the first thing they did was run to the government to fix it. I'd like to feel sorry for your loss but that's impossible because you did it to yourself by trusting an unregulated business with your money. Regulations may not always work but at least they provide some incentive to business owners to at least contact you back and try to fix it before you tattle on them.

Again, you are focusing on proximate causes not ultimate causes. The ultimate cause for the corruption you perceive in large businesses is exactly the same cause for the corruption seen in governments by others - centralization.

And even when the businesses themselves are not corrupt, the external crooks are attracted to them for the same reason - concentration of wealth and power.

Of course, that's why you regulate them to death and insure the results. Insurance goes a long way toward solving problems. Centralization isn't a dirty word. Society is centralized. We live together, play together, fuck each other, have babies and start the cycle over again. We don't live in caves 50 miles apart anymore. Even an organization as small as a nuclear family has regulations governing everyone's role in the organization and punitive actions for misbehavior. 

no more insurance, you have insurance fraud and stuff.  I like the idea of a free-for-all, everyone being cynical and protect their own interest, that's how capitalism works.

It's fun to ponder the notion of anarchy (free-for-all) when you imagine things going in your favor, like freely doing something that's currently illegal but you want to do it anyway. Things go south when someone else gets to do anything they want to do and it hurts me. I like living in a society where I can accidentally scratch someone's car with my car and they don't have the right to bash my brains in with a baseball bat because they're pissed. I much prefer going home in one piece and letting the insurance companies work it out.

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February 28, 2014, 09:44:43 PM
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It amazes me that people don't realize that the crooks in any society or financial arrangement are the business owners not the individuals. Think about all the businesses that have fucked you over in your life. I can name three without giving it much thought (Best Buy, Albertsons and PayPal). Then think of all the individual people that have fucked you over as an adult. I can think of one and he was family (never loan money to family). Businesses by their very design are out to take as much money from you as they can. Bitcoin just gives them an easier way to do that by allowing them to hide behind legal obscurity. Gox is going to do what so many businesses have done in the past and hide behind bankruptcy laws. The reason mainstream financial institutions, like banks, have government protections, like the FDIC, is because their mistakes fuck over so many individuals that people cry for a solution. Libtards forget that those protections are there because people need them, want them and demand them. Pirate@40 fucked over a bunch of people and the first thing they did was run to the government to fix it. I'd like to feel sorry for your loss but that's impossible because you did it to yourself by trusting an unregulated business with your money. Regulations may not always work but at least they provide some incentive to business owners to at least contact you back and try to fix it before you tattle on them.

Again, you are focusing on proximate causes not ultimate causes. The ultimate cause for the corruption you perceive in large businesses is exactly the same cause for the corruption seen in governments by others - centralization.

And even when the businesses themselves are not corrupt, the external crooks are attracted to them for the same reason - concentration of wealth and power.

Of course, that's why you regulate them to death and insure the results. Insurance goes a long way toward solving problems. Centralization isn't a dirty word. Society is centralized. We live together, play together, fuck each other, have babies and start the cycle over again. We don't live in caves 50 miles apart anymore. Even an organization as small as a nuclear family has regulations governing everyone's role in the organization and punitive actions for misbehavior. 

Yes, insurance is excellent, and does not have to be centralized or controlled by a government. Top down systems do create efficiencies, but they are fragile because they have single points of failure. The world is changing; what used to require centralization to function no longer does because of near-free communcation and computation. Decentralized systems are not just robust but even slightly anti-fragile; they evolve with changing circumstances and improve with increases in scale.

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February 28, 2014, 09:47:14 PM
 #28

It amazes me that people don't realize that the crooks in any society or financial arrangement are the business owners not the individuals. Think about all the businesses that have fucked you over in your life. I can name three without giving it much thought (Best Buy, Albertsons and PayPal). Then think of all the individual people that have fucked you over as an adult. I can think of one and he was family (never loan money to family). Businesses by their very design are out to take as much money from you as they can. Bitcoin just gives them an easier way to do that by allowing them to hide behind legal obscurity. Gox is going to do what so many businesses have done in the past and hide behind bankruptcy laws. The reason mainstream financial institutions, like banks, have government protections, like the FDIC, is because their mistakes fuck over so many individuals that people cry for a solution. Libtards forget that those protections are there because people need them, want them and demand them. Pirate@40 fucked over a bunch of people and the first thing they did was run to the government to fix it. I'd like to feel sorry for your loss but that's impossible because you did it to yourself by trusting an unregulated business with your money. Regulations may not always work but at least they provide some incentive to business owners to at least contact you back and try to fix it before you tattle on them.

Again, you are focusing on proximate causes not ultimate causes. The ultimate cause for the corruption you perceive in large businesses is exactly the same cause for the corruption seen in governments by others - centralization.

And even when the businesses themselves are not corrupt, the external crooks are attracted to them for the same reason - concentration of wealth and power.

Of course, that's why you regulate them to death and insure the results. Insurance goes a long way toward solving problems. Centralization isn't a dirty word. Society is centralized. We live together, play together, fuck each other, have babies and start the cycle over again. We don't live in caves 50 miles apart anymore. Even an organization as small as a nuclear family has regulations governing everyone's role in the organization and punitive actions for misbehavior. 

Yes, insurance is excellent, and does not have to be centralized or controlled by a government. Top down systems do create efficiencies, but they are fragile because they have single points of failure. The world is changing; what used to require centralization to function no longer does because of near-free communcation and computation. Decentralized systems are not just robust but even slightly anti-fragile; they evolve with changing circumstances and improve with increases in scale.

I'd love to see a system like that work and survive. To date, Bitcoin hasn't been that system.

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February 28, 2014, 10:15:45 PM
 #29

I began to realize this when the Bitfloor exchange, which had around 50% of my Bitcoins shut down. Roman Stylman promised to return funds to customers, and although the incompetent manner in which refunds were handled was frustrating I was confident I would see my money. Finally, late last year when I had almost given up, I received an email asking me to send my identity details before the end of the month so that my withdrawal could be processed. I did as requested within a few days.

Would you be surprised to hear that I haven't seen a penny? My Bitfloor account still shows the same balance as before (which is supposed to show $0 when the refund is processed). It's been months. I've tried emailing Bitfloor, Twittering Bitfloor, and Twittering Stylman's private account. I haven't heard a peep out of him.

He's clearly not dead; he posts too often about vacations and how much he's enjoying his free time for that. Being dead is the only excuse for ignoring me an people like me.

He has funds that were entrusted to him in his possession and does nothing to see to their return. Roman Stylman should be working tirelessly to return the money that is not his to keep. Roman Stylman thinks he is above answering emails, that Bitfloor is over, and he has no duty to fix what he broke. Roman Styleman has better things to do. Roman Styleman is a crook.


Checks totaling a large amount of USD for bitfloor customers were deposited at IAFCU last summer.  A significant portion of these funds have been returned to their rightful owners.  I am one of the people who did receive a refund.  I believe the intent was to return all the funds.  I think it is reasonable for you to email IAFCU and see if you have unclaimed funds there.  I do not think there is any point to contact Roman at this time.

The effort to identify a cooperating bank, and to do a lot of the legwork to perfect the refunds was done by AudenX <reddit@audenx.com>  The last email I received from him to the list is dated 2013-09-25.  At that time, he reported that success reports were still trickling in.  He is doing a lot of work on a volunteer basis to help resolve this difficulty.  You may wish to send him a status email.  If possible, I would include that dates and descriptions of actions that you have taken.




I try to be respectful and informed.
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February 28, 2014, 10:21:11 PM
 #30

I began to realize this when the Bitfloor exchange, which had around 50% of my Bitcoins shut down. Roman Stylman promised to return funds to customers, and although the incompetent manner in which refunds were handled was frustrating I was confident I would see my money. Finally, late last year when I had almost given up, I received an email asking me to send my identity details before the end of the month so that my withdrawal could be processed. I did as requested within a few days.

Would you be surprised to hear that I haven't seen a penny? My Bitfloor account still shows the same balance as before (which is supposed to show $0 when the refund is processed). It's been months. I've tried emailing Bitfloor, Twittering Bitfloor, and Twittering Stylman's private account. I haven't heard a peep out of him.

He's clearly not dead; he posts too often about vacations and how much he's enjoying his free time for that. Being dead is the only excuse for ignoring me an people like me.

He has funds that were entrusted to him in his possession and does nothing to see to their return. Roman Stylman should be working tirelessly to return the money that is not his to keep. Roman Stylman thinks he is above answering emails, that Bitfloor is over, and he has no duty to fix what he broke. Roman Styleman has better things to do. Roman Styleman is a crook.


Checks totaling a large amount of USD for bitfloor customers were deposited at IAFCU last summer.  A significant portion of these funds have been returned to their rightful owners.  I am one of the people who did receive a refund.  I believe the intent was to return all the funds.  I think it is reasonable for you to email IAFCU and see if you have unclaimed funds there.  I do not think there is any point to contact Roman at this time.

The effort to identify a cooperating bank, and to do a lot of the legwork to perfect the refunds was done by AudenX <reddit@audenx.com>  The last email I received from him to the list is dated 2013-09-25.  At that time, he reported that success reports were still trickling in.  He is doing a lot of work on a volunteer basis to help resolve this difficulty.  You may wish to send him a status email.  If possible, I would include that dates and descriptions of actions that you have taken.





As you very well know, Roman has no intent of returning all the funds involved in Bitfloor.  He has managed to do enough to avoid prosecution, but that is all (and that might be optimistic, New York state is very busy in this area).
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February 28, 2014, 10:55:07 PM
 #31

It amazes me that people don't realize that the crooks in any society or financial arrangement are the business owners not the individuals. Think about all the businesses that have fucked you over in your life. I can name three without giving it much thought (Best Buy, Albertsons and PayPal). Then think of all the individual people that have fucked you over as an adult. I can think of one and he was family (never loan money to family). Businesses by their very design are out to take as much money from you as they can. Bitcoin just gives them an easier way to do that by allowing them to hide behind legal obscurity. Gox is going to do what so many businesses have done in the past and hide behind bankruptcy laws. The reason mainstream financial institutions, like banks, have government protections, like the FDIC, is because their mistakes fuck over so many individuals that people cry for a solution. Libtards forget that those protections are there because people need them, want them and demand them. Pirate@40 fucked over a bunch of people and the first thing they did was run to the government to fix it. I'd like to feel sorry for your loss but that's impossible because you did it to yourself by trusting an unregulated business with your money. Regulations may not always work but at least they provide some incentive to business owners to at least contact you back and try to fix it before you tattle on them.
An extraordinarily persuasive -- and well written -- post.
This single paragraph quoted above has succeeded in persuading me to to change a once-steadfast view on regulation to one of the polar opposite.

You, sir, with your oratory skills, could have persuaded Jesus to come down from the cross. 
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February 28, 2014, 11:05:12 PM
 #32

created my paper wallets on offline Linux machines,

this would have saved you. shame you prefered to throw 100% into exchanges. even today you admit losing BTC last week, yet your left over funds are not in a cold wallet.. but where... an exchange...

i think you have not learnt your lesson.

this is what i do.

break down your funds. 90% in cold store. 10% on exchange. when you profit. put the excess into the cold store and continue playing with the 10%. rinse and repeat, putting profits into cold store and only risking 10%

stop... yes stop using exchanges as long term store of 100% of funds. its just not worth it. after all from the beginning investment, are you still in profit or at a loss.

I DO NOT TRADE OR ACT AS ESCROW ON THIS FORUM EVER.
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March 01, 2014, 02:49:05 AM
 #33

For what it's worth I got all my bit coins AND my fiat sent back to me after bitfloor was shut down. Sorry to hear if not everyone else did. Sad
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March 01, 2014, 02:58:57 AM
 #34


What this teaches us is, first, trust no one. Second of all, even as Bitcoin upholds the Libertarian ideals of minimal government and regulation, it disproves entirely the anarchist notion that there should be none. MtGox has probably violated numerous regulations, but at it's core this is a violation of contract law, plain and simple.


Sorry, but that doesn't even make any sense. If MtGox "probably violated numerous [state] regulations" then how does that "disprove entirely the anarchist notion that there should be none [state regulations]"Huh? When did Japan step in to stop Gox from violating regulations, running their company into the ground, and causing huge customer losses? People can and do violate any regulations they want just like they can and do violate any law they want. They can also be wildly incompetent and/or negligent if they want. State regulation isn't magic, state law isn't magic, and state prosecution isn't magic. And what kind of compensation to victims would it be if the state goes the whole nine yards and eventually ends up putting Karpeles in a cage for a few years? What's so great about that if all your money is still gone?

Now that Gox has filed for bankruptcy, the laws of Japan will most likely act to protect Karpeles from any personal liability for losses. They'd have to make a criminal case against him. So what? If the money's gone then the money's gone whether or not there were regulations and whether or not they prosecute and whether or not Karpeles ever has to go to jail or pay a fine.

Anarchists are not against regulation, only monopolistic state regulation which violates the non-aggression principle. This is very easy to understand if you pay attention to the argument. It's first of all a question of ethics. No one has the right to initiate force against an innocent person. In the case of state regulation, you have a monopoly of force attempting to criminalize certain aspects of trade based on the entirely delusional notion that the state is our protector and that it is able to magically anticipate and stop crimes before they happen by punishing innocent people who have in fact not committed any crime. It's so completely ridiculous that it's self-refuting.

The problem is that state regulation, apart from all the actual harm it does to business, also harms people psychologically. It produces a delusional mindset of dependency and complacency. It prevents people from acting in their own best interests and creating the kind of society everybody says they want. Instead of actually taking steps to build that society, all they do is whine and complain and then beg for state intervention to make them feel better about their whining and complaining. "Something must be done!" And that always means a new tax, a new fee, a new restriction on business, a few new hundred pages thrown onto the law books for lawyers and bureaucrats to get excited about.

When we are dependent on the state like this, we never get to grow up. We never get to see what the market can produce. The solution to shady, poorly run exchanges is to get rid of all the current stack of ridiculous laws and regulations which keep people from starting exchanges in the first place out of fear of random persecution and possible prosecution by "regulators." You get rid of all that strangling crap and you simply allow people to be free. Let them trade. A free market will absolutely produce the best solution because you will have wide open competition, and it won't be about who has the most money to hire the most lawyers. You shouldn't have to do business with a shady corporation in a foreign land. You should be able to have exchanges anywhere and everywhere. Let the cream rise to the top. Let the poorly run ones fail. If people need to lose some money before they figure out how to apply common sense to their own money management, then so be it.

What many people don't understand about markets is that failure acts as a stimulant. Money and market share tends to move from weak hands to strong ones. Those with a better business plan stand to gain enormously by designing their business to meet customer demands for such things as safety and transparency. But markets need some time to fully develop, and entrepreneurs need the freedom to act and come up with viable solutions without being squashed by monopolistic vultures before they even have a chance.





 

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March 01, 2014, 03:03:57 AM
 #35

created my paper wallets on offline Linux machines,

this would have saved you. shame you prefered to throw 100% into exchanges. even today you admit losing BTC last week, yet your left over funds are not in a cold wallet.. but where... an exchange...

i think you have not learnt your lesson.

this is what i do.

break down your funds. 90% in cold store. 10% on exchange. when you profit. put the excess into the cold store and continue playing with the 10%. rinse and repeat, putting profits into cold store and only risking 10%

stop... yes stop using exchanges as long term store of 100% of funds. its just not worth it. after all from the beginning investment, are you still in profit or at a loss.

Hey, I recognize my mistakes. I trusted exchanges more than my own security and put too much emphasis on trading and not enough on keeping what I already had. Security measures do no good when what you are trying to protect is not behind them. Good advice, thank you.


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Razick
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March 01, 2014, 03:13:10 AM
 #36


What this teaches us is, first, trust no one. Second of all, even as Bitcoin upholds the Libertarian ideals of minimal government and regulation, it disproves entirely the anarchist notion that there should be none. MtGox has probably violated numerous regulations, but at it's core this is a violation of contract law, plain and simple.


Sorry, but that doesn't even make any sense. If MtGox "probably violated numerous [state] regulations" then how does that "disprove entirely the anarchist notion that there should be none [state regulations]"Huh? When did Japan step in to stop Gox from violating regulations, running their company into the ground, and causing huge customer losses? People can and do violate any regulations they want just like they can and do violate any law they want. They can also be wildly incompetent and/or negligent if they want. State regulation isn't magic, state law isn't magic, and state prosecution isn't magic. And what kind of compensation to victims would it be if the state goes the whole nine yards and eventually ends up putting Karpeles in a cage for a few years? What's so great about that if all your money is still gone?

Now that Gox has filed for bankruptcy, the laws of Japan will most likely act to protect Karpeles from any personal liability for losses. They'd have to make a criminal case against him. So what? If the money's gone then the money's gone whether or not there were regulations and whether or not they prosecute and whether or not Karpeles ever has to go to jail or pay a fine.

Anarchists are not against regulation, only monopolistic state regulation which violates the non-aggression principle. This is very easy to understand if you pay attention to the argument. It's first of all a question of ethics. No one has the right to initiate force against an innocent person. In the case of state regulation, you have a monopoly of force attempting to criminalize certain aspects of trade based on the entirely delusional notion that the state is our protector and that it is able to magically anticipate and stop crimes before they happen by punishing innocent people who have in fact not committed any crime. It's so completely ridiculous that it's self-refuting.

The problem is that state regulation, apart from all the actual harm it does to business, also harms people psychologically. It produces a delusional mindset of dependency and complacency. It prevents people from acting in their own best interests and creating the kind of society everybody says they want. Instead of actually taking steps to build that society, all they do is whine and complain and then beg for state intervention to make them feel better about their whining and complaining. "Something must be done!" And that always means a new tax, a new fee, a new restriction on business, a few new hundred pages thrown onto the law books for lawyers and bureaucrats to get excited about.

When we are dependent on the state like this, we never get to grow up. We never get to see what the market can produce. The solution to shady, poorly run exchanges is to get rid of all the current stack of ridiculous laws and regulations which keep people from starting exchanges in the first place out of fear of random persecution and possible prosecution by "regulators." You get rid of all that strangling crap and you simply allow people to be free. Let them trade. A free market will absolutely produce the best solution because you will have wide open competition, and it won't be about who has the most money to hire the most lawyers. You shouldn't have to do business with a shady corporation in a foreign land. You should be able to have exchanges anywhere and everywhere. Let the cream rise to the top. Let the poorly run ones fail. If people need to lose some money before they figure out how to apply common sense to their own money management, then so be it.

What many people don't understand about markets is that failure acts as a stimulant. Money and market share tends to move from weak hands to strong ones. Those with a better business plan stand to gain enormously by designing their business to meet customer demands for such things as safety and transparency. But markets need some time to fully develop, and entrepreneurs need the freedom to act and come up with viable solutions without being squashed by monopolistic vultures before they even have a chance.





 

I just skimmed over this so I apologize if I missed something.

What you are describing sounds more like Juris Naturalism (which I tend to agree with in many ways) or Libertarianism than Anarchism (the absence of government) to me. In a common law system based on the principles of 1) Do everything you agree to do and, 2) do not encroach on others and their property, what MtGox did would be a violation of contract law and they would owe restitution (not that they could pay it) and perhaps face other penalties. In an anarchist system, MtGox could barricade the door and fight back the angry mobs that represent the only form of "justice" with guns (assuming that anarchy is possible, which it isn't, because where no government exists, someone will create one).

In the current system, which is the other extreme, even the most honest exchange is forced to comply with thousands of unreasonable and costly regulations that do more harm than good and don't actually protect customers. The average cost per capita of regulations is something around $10,000+ per year in the US.


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pleiotropik
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March 01, 2014, 03:13:42 AM
 #37

Think like a criminal:

Here's something  to ponder: BTC.SX used Mt.Gox as price reference for its derivatives. MtGox had consistently higher quotes than the rest of the exchanges until the 6th of february and then suddenly you see this massive selling going on inside mt.gox. till price reaches $100 around the 20th.

So here the rhetorical  question is: Why would anyone trapped inside MtGox change their BTC for USD? Answer: no reason at all. It is perfectly irrational... take a poll, who sold their BTC inside Gox? i'll bet you you will come up empty handed. So, who was selling all that coin?

One good hypothesis: M.K. himself because he did have a way to transfer USD's into the banking sector through either his parent company Tibbane or through japanese banks. Remember, there were no segregated wallets, M.K. had total control over the centralized wallet where the customer's money was pooled.

So who else profited? Anybody that was short BTC in the BTC.SX derivatives market.  And Guess which company has stopped functioning of late? ...You know the answer to that one.  

Here we have two possible paths:

M.K. or a close associate were gaming BTC.SX by fixing the price and scooping the contracts. or...
MT.Gox and BTC.SX were functioning as a two headed scam to milk clients...
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March 01, 2014, 03:22:18 AM
 #38

It amazes me that people don't realize that the crooks in any society or financial arrangement are the business owners not the individuals. Think about all the businesses that have fucked you over in your life. I can name three without giving it much thought (Best Buy, Albertsons and PayPal). Then think of all the individual people that have fucked you over as an adult. I can think of one and he was family (never loan money to family). Businesses by their very design are out to take as much money from you as they can. Bitcoin just gives them an easier way to do that by allowing them to hide behind legal obscurity. Gox is going to do what so many businesses have done in the past and hide behind bankruptcy laws. The reason mainstream financial institutions, like banks, have government protections, like the FDIC, is because their mistakes fuck over so many individuals that people cry for a solution. Libtards forget that those protections are there because people need them, want them and demand them. Pirate@40 fucked over a bunch of people and the first thing they did was run to the government to fix it. I'd like to feel sorry for your loss but that's impossible because you did it to yourself by trusting an unregulated business with your money. Regulations may not always work but at least they provide some incentive to business owners to at least contact you back and try to fix it before you tattle on them.
An extraordinarily persuasive -- and well written -- post.
This single paragraph quoted above has succeeded in persuading me to to change a once-steadfast view on regulation to one of the polar opposite.

You, sir, with your oratory skills, could have persuaded Jesus to come down from the cross. 

Some regulations are absolutely necessary, such as the ones that tell air traffic how it must behave in crowded airspace, and industry how much it can pollute, but in most cases, common law handles what you are talking about. If a bank mismanages funds in a negligent way, they are guilty of encroaching on their customers and a judge or jury can decide an appropriate amount of restitution. The system we have now encourages an environment of fear, which you suggest is a good thing. I see your point there, but you ignore the costs of that environment. It discourages risk taking and innovation, and makes successful businesses a much rarer occurrence. That's not to mention that many (most?) regulations have a greater direct cost than any conceivable benefit. We all pay for the rules and regulations that government opposes, directly and indirectly.

It's important to ask 1) what is this rule trying to prevent, 2) what are the costs of that scenario, 3) how likely is it, 4) what are the costs (direct and indirect) of the rule, and 5) do the benefits (with consideration given to the likelihood of the scenario) *significantly* outweigh all of the costs?


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cryptoanarchist
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March 01, 2014, 03:29:07 AM
 #39

Here are the bitcoin crooks:



The feds have your gox coins, count on it: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=493449.0
BlueNote
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March 01, 2014, 04:17:00 AM
 #40


I just skimmed over this so I apologize if I missed something.

What you are describing sounds more like Juris Naturalism (which I tend to agree with in many ways) or Libertarianism than Anarchism (the absence of government) to me. In a common law system based on the principles of 1) Do everything you agree to do and, 2) do not encroach on others and their property, what MtGox did would be a violation of contract law and they would owe restitution (not that they could pay it) and perhaps face other penalties. In an anarchist system, MtGox could barricade the door and fight back the angry mobs that represent the only form of "justice" with guns (assuming that anarchy is possible, which it isn't, because where no government exists, someone will create one).

In the current system, which is the other extreme, even the most honest exchange is forced to comply with thousands of unreasonable and costly regulations that do more harm than good and don't actually protect customers. The average cost per capita of regulations is something around $10,000+ per year in the US.

Oh brother. Anarchy doesn't mean lawlessness. Statism, however, is the perfect example of lawlessness where the mob rule you cite and thug justice is actually institutionalized.

And libertarianism is anarchism, BTW. You might want to do some research on the subject.

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