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Author Topic: How long until governments outlaw bitcoin usage?  (Read 14628 times)
CryptikEnigma
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March 31, 2011, 10:16:55 AM
 #61

An interesting thought experiment. Put up a standing bounty for dirt on politicians. Be it sexual ,drugs or other peccadillo's. Eventually the dirt file would mean any move against bitcoin would result in mutually assured destruction.

If you have dirt on the majority of politicos in a given area suddenly you have leverage. All they care about is their public image and will go to any lengths to protect it. Thats why cops make the best drug dealers imo.




Now that's an idea.  Like a crowdsourced version of insurance.256

The problem is finding some dirt that you can directly and definitively link to them.
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abstraction
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March 31, 2011, 05:37:37 PM
 #62

I tried to make this post as tone neutral as possible.

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As any other group of individuals(or any living beings for that matter), they are looking out just for themselves. That is why as long as we have a centralized system which is in control of one group, other group will suffer.
This applies to individuals as well. As long as I have a centralized system of control over myself, others will suffer. I used to not let my opinion be persuaded by others. I used to not let others take me on their trips because I saw no point in it. I used to not let others induce emotional responses in myself because I was afraid I would get taken advantage of. I used to keep my mouth shut at the wrong times because I felt other people were idiots. I used to talk too much at the wrong times because I didn't know how to listen. All of this hurt me and hurt others who dared to associate with me.

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Also, have you ever considered that if someone constantly has to "explain" what to do, maybe the one who is explaining should be doing the job?
Why do they feel the need to "explain"? What do they know? Why should I believe them?

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"Outlaw Bitcoin"? Well, maybe.. But idea is alive and I don't think it can be stopped.
You only need > 50% of GPU power to stop it. (think double-spends) The governments of the world only need to conjure up slightly greater than 50% support of the network to suppress the rest, kind of like "majority rule" democracy.

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I am glad this is happening now and there is enough talent around the globe to pull this off.
Me, too.

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10-20 more years of the crap they call education these days and we'd be doomed as a race.
Education as a whole is a well-meaning profession gone wrong because it is currently based on false principles.

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As to your advice, I don't want to know people in my local community at least not what has become of communities.
You have to be the "change" you are looking for. Obama is showing us what his "change" is based on his actions. What is your "change", based on your actions?

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Majority of them are nothing but ignorant oxygen wasters and the quicker we stop pretending that everyone is equal, the quicker things start getting better.
I think I have heard this mentality before by some pretty bad dudes in history.

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Everybody should get the same opportunity at succeeding, but that's a whole different discussion.
Isn't this what free-market capitalism is?

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We are here for different reasons and have different visions where Bitcoin could take us, so my advice is to keep your emotional outbursts to yourself - they aren't helpful.
Emotions are what induce us to act. My emotional outburst was based on a principle which I hope others can infer correctly from reading this post. I am not afraid to show emotions if they come from a place of truth.

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We have one common goal - we want Bitcoin to succeed, so lets help each other out where we can and keep out of each other’s way where we can't.
I agree wholeheartedly, but how do we collectively determine what actions are helpful? Does more thoughtful conversation and analysis help the group?

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Bitcoin has it's good and bad sides, but it is not for you nor me, nor polititians to decide what is good and what is bad. It is for people to decide.
I agree.  Smiley

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Have a nice evening
Thank you. Also, my thoughts were not organized linearly and your post forced me to linearize them. For that I thank you as well.
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March 31, 2011, 10:35:40 PM
 #63

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"Outlaw Bitcoin"? Well, maybe.. But idea is alive and I don't think it can be stopped.
You only need > 50% of GPU power to stop it. (think double-spends) The governments of the world only need to conjure up slightly greater than 50% support of the network to suppress the rest, kind of like "majority rule" democracy.

No, even 50%+ of the network power isn't enough to break Bitcoin, only to defeat a particular portion of the system security for a period of time.  The only known way to actually break Bitcoin is to shut down the Internet, and unless that is total, then that only works for as long as the sections that are dark remain so.
Quote
Quote
10-20 more years of the crap they call education these days and we'd be doomed as a race.
Education as a whole is a well-meaning profession gone wrong because it is currently based on false principles.

It may seem that way, I'm sure.  But "education" has been surprisingly effective at it's original goals.  Horrance Mann is widely considered the "father" of the American education system, by both his supporters and critics.  Read what he said about the subject, and it will become bluntly obvious that the "education" system was never really intended to educate the children of the middle and lower classes in America, but to condition them.  The next obvious question then becomes, condition them for what?

You will not like the answer.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Underground_History_of_American_Education

"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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April 01, 2011, 01:01:54 AM
 #64

abstraction I see from your answers to few of my points that you did not understand what I wanted to say, but that is probably my fault. I apologize for my poor English.

I'll reiterate few of my and address few of your point:

Politicians are just a bunch of jokers put there so you can think you have choice. You do not!
As to people "explaining stuff" - all I wanted to say was that most knowledgeable people on a specific subject should be leading the way. Politicians or any other group do not have the means nor the capacity to comprehend everything.

Education was marvelous when it was moving us forward in a quest to understand more. Now it is merely accumulation of knowledge and conditioning us to do some specific task without understanding why. Current system even punishes us for independent thinking.

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Everybody should get the same opportunity at succeeding, but that's a whole different discussion
Isn't this what free-market capitalism is?
I don't know what free-market capitalism is. My statement is an idea. It does not have to be boxed into some "free-market capitalism" term. As everything else in nature, it can evolve. Only us, humans, have the need to quantify everything. It helps us to comprehend and assign meaning to it for a specific period of time, but it also restricts it. If you study nature, you'll see that nothing is static - everything is moving and constantly evolving. So should our societies.

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Majority of them are nothing but ignorant oxygen wasters and the quicker we stop pretending that everyone is equal, the quicker things start getting better.
I think I have heard this mentality before by some pretty bad dudes in history.
Yes, you may have heard this before. It is called cynicism.

Quote
Emotions are what induce us to act
Yes, and it is a shame. In my opinion rational thought should be the one to induce action.

You see abstraction, we don't agree on everything, but now we are having a civilized conversation and learning from each other without imposing our value systems on each other
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April 01, 2011, 03:14:31 AM
 #65

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"Outlaw Bitcoin"? Well, maybe.. But idea is alive and I don't think it can be stopped.
You only need > 50% of GPU power to stop it. (think double-spends) The governments of the world only need to conjure up slightly greater than 50% support of the network to suppress the rest, kind of like "majority rule" democracy.

Except of course for the fact that the bitcoin miners actually have to expend useful energy and resources when supporting the network unlike what is commonly understood as democracy where you simply mark some boxes on a piece of paper every couple years...  Smiley

"We will not find a solution to political problems in cryptography, but we can win a major battle in the arms race and gain a new territory of freedom for several years.

Governments are good at cutting off the heads of a centrally controlled networks, but pure P2P networks are holding their own."
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April 01, 2011, 09:44:49 AM
 #66

The threat of prosecution will certainly dampen the value, as well as the rate of spread, of Bitcoin; but will ultimately fail to destroy it.  Politicos aren't stupid, they look at these kind of things deeply before acting.  If they attempt it, they would have to know that it's a stall tactic.

http://www.bitterwallet.com/what-does-the-ip-in-ip-address-stand-for-ask-stephen-timms/27968

They know nothing about what they imagine they can control.

This evokes the image of a blind Polyphemus chasing after Odysseus. Things would have gone much smoother for Odysseus if he had not announced his identity to Polyphemus...

Interesting  Smiley

Perhaps the bag of winds is the internet, and we're the soldiers thinking that it's a bag of gold? Scary.
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April 01, 2011, 11:13:30 AM
 #67

Quote
"Outlaw Bitcoin"? Well, maybe.. But idea is alive and I don't think it can be stopped.
You only need > 50% of GPU power to stop it. (think double-spends) The governments of the world only need to conjure up slightly greater than 50% support of the network to suppress the rest, kind of like "majority rule" democracy.

Except of course for the fact that the bitcoin miners actually have to expend useful energy and resources when supporting the network unlike what is commonly understood as democracy where you simply mark some boxes on a piece of paper every couple years...  Smiley

That and the fact they cant make you mine on their blockchain. If they took over everyone would give them the finger and theyd be left with a useless bitcoin fork.
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April 01, 2011, 05:56:54 PM
 #68

It may seem that way, I'm sure.  But "education" has been surprisingly effective at it's original goals.  Horrance Mann is widely considered the "father" of the American education system, by both his supporters and critics.  Read what he said about the subject, and it will become bluntly obvious that the "education" system was never really intended to educate the children of the middle and lower classes in America, but to condition them.  The next obvious question then becomes, condition them for what?

You will not like the answer.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Underground_History_of_American_Education

I wasn't restricting my scope to American history. I was thinking of education in a philosophical sense - to pass on truths.

abstraction I see from your answers to few of my points that you did not understand what I wanted to say, but that is probably my fault. I apologize for my poor English.
I understood your English correctly. Our differences lie elsewhere.

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Politicians are just a bunch of jokers put there so you can think you have choice. You do not!
I have the choice to make up my own mind, and I do. If I can take what I know, create a logically sound message, and tailor the message in such away that it is intuitively understood by just about everybody, then I have mastered the art of persuasion and I have all the choice in the world. I understand this may sound silly to people who don't know me personally, but in meatspace, I'm learning crucial communication skills by forcing myself to converse with a wide variety of minds. I made a lot more errors in judgment before I started going around talking to people.

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As to people "explaining stuff" - all I wanted to say was that most knowledgeable people on a specific subject should be leading the way.
This may be where our greatest confusion comes from. I'm an extremely skeptical person. I try not to trust what anybody says (experts included) unless I understand conceptually what they are saying about something. In other words, determining who the "most knowledgeable people on a specific subject" requires me to understand the subject as well as they do by taking what they say and transforming the concept into some sort of paradigm that is already familiar to me. If I understand the paradigm, I can see where its strengths and weaknesses are relative to other related paradigms I know. If I bring up a "what if this plausible event happens?" question that the "knowledgeable" person did not consider before, then I really dig in on why they did not consider it. I have to translate between my paradigm and theirs to do this.

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Politicians or any other group do not have the means nor the capacity to comprehend everything.
We are a group as well, so in what ways are we blind? That is what I am trying to figure out.

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Education was marvelous when it was moving us forward in a quest to understand more. Now it is merely accumulation of knowledge and conditioning us to do some specific task without understanding why. Current system even punishes us for independent thinking.
Based on my experiences in life, I know I am very independent in my thinking.

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Quote
Everybody should get the same opportunity at succeeding, but that's a whole different discussion
Isn't this what free-market capitalism is?
I don't know what free-market capitalism is. My statement is an idea. It does not have to be boxed into some "free-market capitalism" term.[/quote]
I'm working from this definition http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_market except that I view it in what I consider the purest sense - no government at all. I think your idea and my term are compatible, but I'd like you to elaborate on why it is not if you believe it is not.

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As everything else in nature, it can evolve. Only us, humans, have the need to quantify everything. It helps us to comprehend and assign meaning to it for a specific period of time, but it also restricts it. If you study nature, you'll see that nothing is static - everything is moving and constantly evolving. So should our societies.
I understand this. I see change and I seek to understand both its function in the later state and what state induced it.

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I think I have heard this mentality before by some pretty bad dudes in history.
Yes, you may have heard this before. It is called cynicism.
I used to be cynical, but I found it limited my thoughts and I'm a free thinker.

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Quote
Emotions are what induce us to act
Yes, and it is a shame. In my opinion rational thought should be the one to induce action.
In my rationale, the complexity in emotion is one part of humanity that distinguishes itself from other species. You used the word "shame" to describe it. Why is it shameful? Shame is not an emotion I understand very well yet. I do know that when I do act rationally, I have a selfish desire to improve my quality of life. I know that the action both makes sense and feels good to carry out. That's why I do it. Both my thoughts and my feelings harmonize, or get in phase on a good plan of action, and then I act.

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You see abstraction, we don't agree on everything, but now we are having a civilized conversation and learning from each other without imposing our value systems on each other
I don't agree with this, yet. I purposefully imposed my value system explicitly so that it could be judged publicly so I could know where I am wrong. I need to know where I am wrong so I can eventually know where I am right. I responded this way to you originally because I sensed how strong your implicit value system is. I don't know what that system is yet, but I still sense it being imposed on me. I would like you to expose it publicly so I can understand it fully, if you don't mind doing that.
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April 01, 2011, 10:35:12 PM
 #69

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I have the choice to make up my own mind, and I do. If I can take what I know, create a logically sound message, and tailor the message in such away that it is intuitively understood by just about everybody, then I have mastered the art of persuasion and I have all the choice in the world. I understand this may sound silly to people who don't know me personally, but in meatspace, I'm learning crucial communication skills by forcing myself to converse with a wide variety of minds. I made a lot more errors in judgment before I started going around talking to people.

Well, maybe you are just very lucky to live in a place where you can converse with a wide variety of minds. I personally lived in few countries over the years but where ever I went, I met the same people over and over again. They all repeat what they've heard on TV or radio, but if you question them for the real reasons why they think that way, they can not answer you. The only response you'll ever get is an emotional one and usually then debate turns personal - "I am better than you, and you are not better than me".

In fact, lets try simple example. If you think you can make your own mind up and have freedom of choice, tell me, why can't you drink beer in public places. My guess would be, that you'd like to, or even if I am wrong, I know most people would like that. So why is it that it is against the law?

Quote
This may be where our greatest confusion comes from. I'm an extremely skeptical person. I try not to trust what anybody says (experts included) unless I understand conceptually what they are saying about something. In other words, determining who the "most knowledgeable people on a specific subject" requires me to understand the subject as well as they do by taking what they say and transforming the concept into some sort of paradigm that is already familiar to me. If I understand the paradigm, I can see where its strengths and weaknesses are relative to other related paradigms I know. If I bring up a "what if this plausible event happens?" question that the "knowledgeable" person did not consider before, then I really dig in on why they did not consider it. I have to translate between my paradigm and theirs to do this.

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Politicians or any other group do not have the means nor the capacity to comprehend everything.
We are a group as well, so in what ways are we blind? That is what I am trying to figure out.

You are very much like me in some respects. We both have a curious mind which is constantly questioning things. What I wanted to say was that we can not have one group deciding everything as it is simply not possible for it to be knowledgeable on every subject. My proposal is that if someone feels strongly about something they should be able to go and learn about it and participate in debates where majority of that specific group decides the way forward.
In other words, I hope one day all information will be free and accessible to everybody. And anybody who wants and has the knowledge to do so will be able to influence things directly.

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In my rationale, the complexity in emotion is one part of humanity that distinguishes itself from other species. You used the word "shame" to describe it. Why is it shameful? Shame is not an emotion I understand very well yet. I do know that when I do act rationally, I have a selfish desire to improve my quality of life. I know that the action both makes sense and feels good to carry out. That's why I do it. Both my thoughts and my feelings harmonize, or get in phase on a good plan of action, and then I act.

Again we are getting lost in translation. By saying "It's a shame" I wanted to express my disappointment. In my opinion we, as a race, are capable of so much, but current state of our world is a very sad reflection on that wasted potential. You see, I think that "what feels good" usually leads to destruction. We are savages by nature. The only thing that separates us from animals is that we are capable of rational thought. We just should exercise it more often.

As to myself, your guess was pretty accurate. I am misanthropic and socially inept, but I would not call myself arrogant - stating something obvious does not make me arrogant. In fact, I think I am quite on the opposite side of arrogant - I don't feel important, nor do I think that anybody, as an individual is important. But then again, this has no relevance whatsoever to the subject at hand. That is what I was trying to get across all along. People's opinions should not be judged by their personal belief, appearance, value system or any other subjective criteria. If someone has an in depth understanding on a subject and presents a rational argument, it should be taken as such.
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April 01, 2011, 11:37:14 PM
 #70


In fact, lets try simple example. If you think you can make your own mind up and have freedom of choice, tell me, why can't you drink beer in public places. My guess would be, that you'd like to, or even if I am wrong, I know most people would like that. So why is it that it is against the law?


That's against the law?

"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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April 01, 2011, 11:58:19 PM
 #71

https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Alcoholic_beverage#Prohibition_of_drinking_alcohol_in_public_places
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April 02, 2011, 01:10:59 AM
 #72

Hasn't stopped me yet.  And from what I can tell, it hasn't stopped anyone else either.

"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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April 02, 2011, 01:22:26 AM
 #73

you just wait

in many places it is already well enforced. my point was more to encourage analysis of such laws
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April 02, 2011, 02:27:50 AM
 #74

Let's substitute drinking at 18, 19 and 20 in the US. I personally joined the Marines at 17 and couldn't drink for 4 years.
I knew guys that died before they could legally drink. Separate issue but I think US priorities in general are out of whack.
16 drive, 18 vote (and a lot of other things, smoke, sign legal contracts, bukake porn etc etc) 21 drink....wtf?

Just pisses me off.

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April 02, 2011, 08:08:21 AM
 #75


In fact, lets try simple example. If you think you can make your own mind up and have freedom of choice, tell me, why can't you drink beer in public places. My guess would be, that you'd like to, or even if I am wrong, I know most people would like that. So why is it that it is against the law?


That's against the law?

In The State of Georgia, you can't have an open container of alcohol in public places.  It is always a fun adrenaline rush to figure out clever ways of concealing your alcoholic beverage while walking on the sidewalk.  But yeah...you'll get locked in a government-run rape cage (that is if you get caught and don't pay the fine, of course).

"We will not find a solution to political problems in cryptography, but we can win a major battle in the arms race and gain a new territory of freedom for several years.

Governments are good at cutting off the heads of a centrally controlled networks, but pure P2P networks are holding their own."
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April 04, 2011, 01:59:24 AM
 #76

The threat of prosecution will certainly dampen the value, as well as the rate of spread, of Bitcoin; but will ultimately fail to destroy it.  Politicos aren't stupid, they look at these kind of things deeply before acting.  If they attempt it, they would have to know that it's a stall tactic.

http://www.bitterwallet.com/what-does-the-ip-in-ip-address-stand-for-ask-stephen-timms/27968

They know nothing about what they imagine they can control.

This evokes the image of a blind Polyphemus chasing after Odysseus. Things would have gone much smoother for Odysseus if he had not announced his identity to Polyphemus...

Interesting  Smiley

Perhaps the bag of winds is the internet, and we're the soldiers thinking that it's a bag of gold? Scary.

They understood the potential energy of the bag of winds. They did not understand how to convert it to a useful kinetic energy. What was it about the soldiers that made them tragic heroes?
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April 06, 2011, 02:06:57 PM
 #77

Next up in the "Is the goverment about to make Bitcoin illegal ?" question game for your entertainment and my financial edfication...

I was just perusing the forum, saw someone link to a page about "Hawala" and wandered off down the wikipedia path, to the "Informal Value Transfer System" page here.. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Informal_value_transfer_system

Interesting reading, but more so, reading the linked source document from http://www.fincen.gov/advis33.pdf

It has the usual rehotic about alternative non-government-regulated financial systems being used for drug dealers, tax evaders, terrorist fudning (oops, typo, but rather appropriate on 2nd thought Wink ) and ticks all the common fear buzzwords, but the interesting bit is down the bottom under "Regulating IVTS in the United States" where they say something like

"all IVTS operators must register with FinCen (Financial Crimes Enforcement Network) and comply with all registration, record-keeping, reporting and AML (Anti Money Laundering) requirements"

Now, I realise that the term "IVTS Operators" would be difficult to apply rigidly to the decentralised P2P Bitcoin network itself and that it is US-Centric law, but surely it would apply to any US-based Bitcoin-exchange business ?

Also Im betting any hostile legislator who thinks on about the level of "The Internet is a series of tubes" would just be bamboozled by any explanation of P2P networking and decide their rules apply regardless of any technicalities

It Bitcoin-exchangers are taking US-dollars and turning it into digital tokens, it sounds like they would probably be considered IVTS operators, but (without having read) all the required "record keeping and reporting" requirements, Id suspect that then sending those tokens out into an untrackable P2P network probably doesn't meet the record-keeping requirements about what they did with them.

So, by these rules, are existing Bitcoin Merchants in the US *already* illegal in the USA in a technical sense ?

And yes, I know Bitcoin is supra-USA and the specifics of USA-centric laws dont apply to the network as a whole, but as someone else said, if it can be proved (or even reasonably) claimed to be illegal, that might scare off a lot of otherwise "upstanding citizens".

Ive already had a few discussions with people regarding Bitcoin where the usual "Surely thats illegal ?" and "What are you trying to do ? Destroy the Worlds financial system ?" questions have come up..  Maybe Im not explaining it to people correctly ?

Can anyone suggest while this bit of paranoia-inspired "we need to be able to watch all money flows for your own safety" legalese would *not* apply to USA based Bitcoiners ?    Would a legal technicality of how bitcoin is "not *money*" in the FinCEN regulated sense be enough to hold off the wolves ?

Sorry if this is an unwelcome question or focus on what problems Bitcoin might encounter..  I like Bitcoin, own some, am thinking about how to accept them as payment for services, and want to see it succeed, but I cant believe the current bosses are going to take it lying down and am wondering how they might attack in the future.

Thanks for any considered opinions by those more knowledgeable than I in this area.
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April 06, 2011, 02:18:00 PM
 #78


"all IVTS operators must register with FinCen (Financial Crimes Enforcement Network) and comply with all registration, record-keeping, reporting and AML (Anti Money Laundering) requirements"

Now, I realise that the term "IVTS Operators" would be difficult to apply rigidly to the decentralised P2P Bitcoin network itself and that it is US-Centric law, but surely it would apply to any US-based Bitcoin-exchange business ?

Also Im betting any hostile legislator who thinks on about the level of "The Internet is a series of tubes" would just be bamboozled by any explanation of P2P networking and decide their rules apply regardless of any technicalities

It Bitcoin-exchangers are taking US-dollars and turning it into digital tokens, it sounds like they would probably be considered IVTS operators, but (without having read) all the required "record keeping and reporting" requirements, Id suspect that then sending those tokens out into an untrackable P2P network probably doesn't meet the record-keeping requirements about what they did with them.

So, by these rules, are existing Bitcoin Merchants in the US *already* illegal in the USA in a technical sense ?

I read but didn't quote the whole thing to avoid a wall of text.

I was actually going to post nearly the same exact thing and you just beat me to it.
It's a scary thought but I can see them using a lot of arguments against bitcoin that would work on the majority of the people.
I believe IVTS is illegal in a few places, the US government arrested quite a few people after 9/11 for running similar.

One thing that I think is interesting is you could make it so exchanges have to keep detailed records of where they send and receive bitcoins / USD / whatever but that's not going to help you if the person that receives the btc just transfers it somewhere else and hides it. I see a lot of opposition in the future and a lot of using terms / rules that were made before this type of system was possible and a lot of people that have no idea how it works making the decisions. Remember this is the same government that thinks it's ok to fine someone millions of dollars for downloading a few songs.

Thanks for your post though, really informative and brings up a really good point that I haven't heard talked about on here yet.


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April 06, 2011, 03:21:51 PM
 #79

Can anyone suggest while this bit of paranoia-inspired "we need to be able to watch all money flows for your own safety" legalese would *not* apply to USA based Bitcoiners ?    Would a legal technicality of how bitcoin is "not *money*" in the FinCEN regulated sense be enough to hold off the wolves ?

I suppose, ultimately, nobody will know the answer to this question until a case has been heard in court.  However, the reality is that there are so many laws on the books that everyone is a criminal already, even the little old lady from Pasadena.  Consider all the sales tax revenue that US states lose to online sales.  How many people do you know who don't shop online?  Of the people who do shop online, how many dutifully calculate and remit the required state sales taxes?  Since everyone is already guilty of financial crimes, it's much more productive to talk about methods of defense than what is legal or illegal.  I think the best defense for this type of attack against the Bitcoin system is to have as many small exchangers as possible.  Ideally, everyone who participates in the Bitcoin economy should offer to do exchanges.  It just won't be worth the government's while to chase down and audit/prosecute everyone.  This is, in a general sense, how distributed systems will ultimately triumph over centralized forms of control.

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April 06, 2011, 03:39:58 PM
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However, the reality is that there are so many laws on the books that everyone is a criminal already, even the little old lady from Pasadena.

+1

In Brazil, a lawyer took on the task of making one book with all tributary laws. The effort took almost 20 years, and the book weights 6 tons. He had to find a billboard advertising company to print it, no book printers had the necessary capacity.

And that's just the tributary legislation!! Imagine all different codes together! It's impossible to be "law-abiding". "Follow the law" means "have more and better lawyers than those who might oppose you".

Edit: A Brazilian author calls this crypto-totalitarianism. It gives those in power almost complete control over people, like in a totalitarian state, only that people don't see it clearly. It's a disguised totalitarianism.

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