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Author Topic: Gold collapsing. Bitcoin UP.  (Read 1805630 times)
ArticMine
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July 11, 2014, 10:49:34 PM
 #9421

Funny how I used to laugh at those people who called gold the "barbarous relic" but since I've discovered Bitcoin I'm beginning to feel the same way. As a former precious metals dealer I appreciate how Bitcoin is so darn easy to use and precious metals are such a chore to deal with. I'm excited to see what the future will continue to bring. Maybe Open Transactions anonymous digital cash secured by bitcoin? Now that would be cool...

That's because gold as money/store of value wasn't outdated until bitcoin showed up.
You were right to laugh then, and you are right to feel this way now.

So true. Bitcoin was the unexpected "Black Swan."



Bitcoin is gold's Black Swan.

Sorta has a ring to it.

Precious metals have a huge weakness in that it is very expensive and difficult to take delivery. As a result holders and traders of PMs have for millennia relied on trusted third parties to 1) Guarantee the fineness of PMs and 2) Store and transport PMs. Over these same millennia these "trusted third parties" have engaged in their own shenanigans from the debasement of the Denarius during the Roman Empire to fractional reserve banking by the Rothschilds to the conspiracy theories surrounding the German gold at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. It is these critical flaws with PMs that led to the rise of fiat currencies.

Bitcoin solves these critical flaws with PMs by eliminating the need for these "trusted third parties" and their shenanigans.

Concerned that blockchain bloat will lead to centralization? Storing less than 4 GB of data once required the budget of a superpower and a warehouse full of punched cards. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/87/IBM_card_storage.NARA.jpg https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punched_card
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tvbcof
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July 11, 2014, 11:26:37 PM
 #9422

Funny how I used to laugh at those people who called gold the "barbarous relic" but since I've discovered Bitcoin I'm beginning to feel the same way. As a former precious metals dealer I appreciate how Bitcoin is so darn easy to use and precious metals are such a chore to deal with.

Me too.  I was preparing for a sale of some silver recently when the full impact of this hit me: man this stuff is heavy!  Moving forward, I see gold as a hedge against a security fault in bitcoin and something that central banks may cling to in a final effort to save fiat.  The concept of silver as money I now see as essentially pointless. 

I had a taxi drop me off at the bank with some silver once on the way back from the airport.  As soon as he left I remembered that my safe deposit box key was in my apartment some blocks away.  Shit!  I couldn't very well just leave the stuff on a park bench so I had to lug it all the way to my apartment to get my key then all the way back (my car being parked closer to the bank than to my apartment anyway and parking in the Bay area being a nightmare.)

Ya, Bitcoin has a variety of advantages.  Some of these, and this one in particular, were key to Bitcoin capturing my interest some years later.

To you point about 'money', I see it as the opposite.  Gold is fairly useless as 'money' because it is to valuable.  Junk silver is just about right.  I should point out that I don't see either as being useful as 'money' as long as the USD works fine, and it performs admirably as money at the moment.  If I had confidence in this state of affairs persisting in perpetuity I would not be terribly interest in gold, silver, or Bitcoin.


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July 12, 2014, 12:05:45 AM
 #9423

I should point out that I don't see either as being useful as 'money' as long as the USD works fine, and it performs admirably as money at the moment.  If I had confidence in this state of affairs persisting in perpetuity I would not be terribly interest in gold, silver, or Bitcoin.



Alot of the time when I read your posts I think you just enjoy listening to yourself talk. Of course, I could be guilty of that myself but I usually don't write in contradictions.

Thinking that the USD performs admirably while investing significantly in pm's and bitcoin, at least to the extent that you've told us, sounds ridiculous. Perhaps you meant "tolerably" at best.  Given the Fed's 2% inflation policy, USD hegemony in all its forms, QE, legal fiat status for taxes and debt settlement (forced acceptance), etc, I think that would be a more accurate description don't you?
ArticMine
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July 12, 2014, 12:32:37 AM
 #9424

I should point out that I don't see either as being useful as 'money' as long as the USD works fine, and it performs admirably as money at the moment.  If I had confidence in this state of affairs persisting in perpetuity I would not be terribly interest in gold, silver, or Bitcoin.



Alot of the time when I read your posts I think you just enjoy listening to yourself talk. Of course, I could be guilty of that myself but I usually don't write in contradictions.

Thinking that the USD performs admirably while investing significantly in pm's and bitcoin, at least to the extent that you've told us, sounds ridiculous. Perhaps you meant "tolerably" at best.  Given the Fed's 2% inflation policy, USD hegemony in all its forms, QE, legal fiat status for taxes and debt settlement (forced acceptance), etc, I think that would be a more accurate description don't you?

It depends on the time frame. If one is looking to preserve wealth for under a 1 month period USD or another of the G7 fiat currencies are an excellent choice. If one is looking to preserve wealth for a period of 18 months or more BTC wins hands down. By the way I am currently invested 102.2% in BTC 0.2% in LTC and -2.4% in CAD. My second choice after BTC / LTC (for diversification from BTC / LTC) would actually be USD or another of the G7 fiat currencies. As for PMs I am staying well away. Ditto for stocks and real estate (the latter because I live in Canada). PMs can crash brutally and even in their best scenario a inflationary collapse of USD are very likely to under perform BTC.

One does not have to expect the collapse of USD in order to invest in BTC.

Concerned that blockchain bloat will lead to centralization? Storing less than 4 GB of data once required the budget of a superpower and a warehouse full of punched cards. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/87/IBM_card_storage.NARA.jpg https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punched_card
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July 12, 2014, 01:53:28 AM
 #9425

To you point about 'money', I see it as the opposite.  Gold is fairly useless as 'money' because it is to valuable.  Junk silver is just about right.  I should point out that I don't see either as being useful as 'money' as long as the USD works fine, and it performs admirably as money at the moment.  If I had confidence in this state of affairs persisting in perpetuity I would not be terribly interest in gold, silver, or Bitcoin.

I should have clarified what I meant: given that bitcoin was invented, silver is pointless.  But I think gold still has some benefit as a high-density purely physical store of value (e.g., as a hedge against the unlikely event IMO that bitcoin fails).  

If bitcoin had never been invented, then silver is useful for exactly the reason you said: gold is too valuable to ever be useful for day-to-day purchases.

Slightly off topic, but it's interesting to note that we both seem to agree that the point of monetary silver is to make up for a deficit in gold (it's hard to scrap off $2 of gold to buy a loaf of bread).  Because of bitcoin's divisibility and weightlessness, the notion that some alt-coin will become the "silver to bitcoin's gold" is nonsense.

Run Bitcoin Unlimited (www.bitcoinunlimited.info)
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July 12, 2014, 02:06:49 AM
 #9426

To you point about 'money', I see it as the opposite.  Gold is fairly useless as 'money' because it is to valuable.  Junk silver is just about right.  I should point out that I don't see either as being useful as 'money' as long as the USD works fine, and it performs admirably as money at the moment.  If I had confidence in this state of affairs persisting in perpetuity I would not be terribly interest in gold, silver, or Bitcoin.

I should have clarified what I meant: given that bitcoin was invented, silver is pointless.  But I think gold still has some benefit as a high-density purely physical store of value (e.g., as a hedge against the unlikely event IMO that bitcoin fails).  

If bitcoin had never been invented, then silver is useful for exactly the reason you said: gold is too valuable to ever be useful for day-to-day purchases.

Slightly off topic, but it's interesting to note that we both seem to agree that the point of monetary silver is to make up for a deficit in gold (it's hard to scrap off $2 of gold to buy a loaf of bread).  Because of bitcoin's divisibility and weightlessness, the notion that some alt-coin will become the "silver to bitcoin's gold" is nonsense.

Yes in regards to litecoin.  But I see a micropayment coin being successful.  It will have a fundamentally different structure.   Instead of history it will have a db.  Blockchain will cointain hash of the db state and the txns reqd to get there from prior state.  Old blockchain can therefore be forgotten.   It will encourage address reuse by higher txn fee to new addr.  This will make the db size grow much slower than number of txns does which is key feature of u payment coin.
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July 12, 2014, 02:17:49 AM
 #9427

Yes in regards to litecoin.  But I see a micropayment coin being successful.  It will have a fundamentally different structure.   Instead of history it will have a db.  Blockchain will cointain hash of the db state and the txns reqd to get there from prior state.  Old blockchain can therefore be forgotten.   It will encourage address reuse by higher txn fee to new addr.  This will make the db size grow much slower than number of txns does which is key feature of u payment coin.

I acknowledge the usefulness of micropayments, but I can't imagine an entirely separate currency (as in a currency with an exchange rate that floats with respect to bitcoin) being the solution.  I don't have an answer for what I think the solution will look like, however, but I think it will be tied intimately to bitcoin's ledger.  I do see your point about the db minimizing blockchain growth. 

Run Bitcoin Unlimited (www.bitcoinunlimited.info)
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July 12, 2014, 02:25:18 AM
 #9428

Yes in regards to litecoin.  But I see a micropayment coin being successful.  It will have a fundamentally different structure.   Instead of history it will have a db.  Blockchain will cointain hash of the db state and the txns reqd to get there from prior state.  Old blockchain can therefore be forgotten.   It will encourage address reuse by higher txn fee to new addr.  This will make the db size grow much slower than number of txns does which is key feature of u payment coin.

I acknowledge the usefulness of micropayments, but I can't imagine an entirely separate currency (as in a currency with an exchange rate that floats with respect to bitcoin) being the solution.  I don't have an answer for what I think the solution will look like, however, but I think it will be tied intimately to bitcoin's ledger.  I do see your point about the db minimizing blockchain growth. 

Yes sidechain would be better
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July 12, 2014, 04:26:09 AM
 #9429

I should point out that I don't see either as being useful as 'money' as long as the USD works fine, and it performs admirably as money at the moment.  If I had confidence in this state of affairs persisting in perpetuity I would not be terribly interest in gold, silver, or Bitcoin.



Alot of the time when I read your posts I think you just enjoy listening to yourself talk. Of course, I could be guilty of that myself but I usually don't write in contradictions.

Thinking that the USD performs admirably while investing significantly in pm's and bitcoin, at least to the extent that you've told us, sounds ridiculous. Perhaps you meant "tolerably" at best.  Given the Fed's 2% inflation policy, USD hegemony in all its forms, QE, legal fiat status for taxes and debt settlement (forced acceptance), etc, I think that would be a more accurate description don't you?

I use 'money' for transaction.  PM's and Bitcoin are, to me, a different asset class, and at least in part solutions for problems that we don't currently have (and hopefully never will.)

Legal Tender is kind of the 'killer app' for USD since I spend a lot of my time in the real world and not some fantasy la-la-land.  I also appreciate the predictability of the USD for use as money in terms of inflation rate.  I've been sitting tight on my Bitcoin for half a year now since it is down like 50% from what I'd like to get for it.  Gold/Silver much longer than that.

I've never been comfortable doing many transactions with Bitcoin because it just won't scale.  Sure, in the early times (which we are still in) it would be practical to use it for all kinds of shit (even Satoshi Dice messaging back in the day) but that situation is transient.  I don't want to get habituated to something I know won't work, and I even less want to see Bitcoin hammered into a different shape to overcome this problem (before a real solution like sidechains or treechains comes along.)  When I do do Bitcoin transactions from my own client I pay like $10 or whatever as a transaction fee because that is how I think the system could sustain in the form I would like to see.  I'm a man of principle I guess Smiley  Said a different way, I don't really visualize Bitcoin as 'money' in the same way I don't see gold as playing that role.  Both are ill-suited to any but specialized transactions.

Lastly, I consider Bitcoin to be experimental and quite risky.  We've dodged several notable bullets so far, and as the solution grows, ducking and weaving will become less practical.  And it's always a possibility that a direct hit could come along.  1) The BDB mis-config was solved by the grace of friendly miners.  If not-so-friendly entities, or those under control of not-so-friendly entities had been around the outcome could have been different.  2) The mutability thing was annoying mostly because Bitcoin is still in it's infancy, but exposed some dev priority issues and lack of rigor.  3) The Heartbleed thing could have been utterly devastating if anyone used the stupid payment protocol x.509 crap.  And God knows what else is lurking in OpenSSL and/or your friendly RNG of choice (someone's choice, but probably not yours.)  Both have been subjects of extreme interest by the likes of the NSA for a while.

All that said, I still float quite a lot of value in BTC, and it would hurt plenty to lose it.  Part of why I do is that I've taken out a hell of a lot more than I put in.  Being rigorous in a scheme which precludes loss or theft is exceedingly technical and cumbersome (to my level of precision.)  Yet another reason why Bitcoin sucks as 'money.'  OTOH, I keep loose (bitcoin) change kicking around so that isn't a terribly big deal really.


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July 12, 2014, 06:08:56 AM
 #9430


I'm a man of principle I guess Smiley


Weren't you a socialist?

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http://mercadobitcoin.com - MercadoBitcoin
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July 12, 2014, 08:05:27 AM
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I'm a man of principle I guess Smiley


Weren't you a socialist?

I've changed my mind about whether I want to use that label exactly due to some economic structure preferences.  I believe (now and before) that certain economic activities should be public or have public oversight (like public utility districts) and resource extraction from public lands should be carefully managed for the benefit of all members of society (and that there is a place for public lands) but in general I don't believe in centralized management of economic activity as do many socialists.  Oversight yes in a lot of cases however since unregulated markets often lead to collusion, price fixing, fraud, and other sorts of mischief.  I have probably stronger private property rights views than true socialists.  I do believe in a 'welfare state' where the old and unfortunate are cared for at the expense of those who can shoulder the burden although with strong enough controls that the level of fraud is tolerable.  So for the purposes if this forum I might as well be a 'socialist'.  Or 'communist' to many here.  Whatever.


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July 12, 2014, 01:42:26 PM
 #9432


I'm a man of principle I guess Smiley


Weren't you a socialist?

Quote from 30+ years ago when I was at college. "In capitalism, man exploits man. In communism it's the other way around."
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July 12, 2014, 01:58:34 PM
 #9433

In May, I celebrated my birthday in the backwoods of China. And found myself stuck without any money. Without the credit/debit cards that I loathe so much, I would have been royally screwed. I did have a few silver coins on me but I didn't have to try and use them and I doubt they would have been much use in practical terms. It's way too early to sound the death knell on PMs as store of value just yet, and for the foreseeable future, but the writing is on the wall with crypto currencies. For everyday money, fiats rule for now. But the soon to ship debit cards that use bitcoins in some form or another should be a nice bridge between the current infrastructure and the new.
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July 12, 2014, 02:00:04 PM
 #9434

Oversight yes in a lot of cases however since unregulated markets often lead to collusion, price fixing, fraud, and other sorts of mischief.


Oversight from whom? Who watches the watchers?

http://elbitcoin.org - Bitcoin en español
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July 12, 2014, 02:45:23 PM
 #9435

Oversight yes in a lot of cases however since unregulated markets often lead to collusion, price fixing, fraud, and other sorts of mischief.


Oversight from whom? Who watches the watchers?

I'm not him, but a possible solution could be to make certain transactions / accountings public.  Oversight and transparency in the way the crowd found out about MtGox's "surprise 200k coins", for instance.  Public blockchains can be useful to provide the public accountability of charities or governmental spending, for instance.

Use your Namecoin identity as OpenID: https://nameid.org/
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July 12, 2014, 02:52:15 PM
 #9436

Oversight yes in a lot of cases however since unregulated markets often lead to collusion, price fixing, fraud, and other sorts of mischief.


Oversight from whom? Who watches the watchers?

I think what tvbcof is pointing out is that in a totally unregulated world, humans tend to murder, rape, pillage, steal, cheat and much more. Because there are around one billion too many people on the planet, some level of regulation is required in most aspects of life.
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July 12, 2014, 04:39:25 PM
 #9437

Oversight yes in a lot of cases however since unregulated markets often lead to collusion, price fixing, fraud, and other sorts of mischief.


Oversight from whom? Who watches the watchers?

I think what tvbcof is pointing out is that in a totally unregulated world, humans tend to murder, rape, pillage, steal, cheat and much more. Because there are around one billion too many people on the planet, some level of regulation is required in most aspects of life.

There's an enormous difference between a de-regulated world and a lawless world.  Removing regulation doesn't mean that people can defraud and murder with impunity.  Quite the contrary I would say.  In a de-regulated world, one must build a solid reputation to earn trust.  And so reputation becomes more valuable and thus more protected than in a world where the state attempts to remove all risk.

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July 12, 2014, 04:42:56 PM
 #9438

Oversight yes in a lot of cases however since unregulated markets often lead to collusion, price fixing, fraud, and other sorts of mischief.


Oversight from whom? Who watches the watchers?

I think what tvbcof is pointing out is that in a totally unregulated world, humans tend to murder, rape, pillage, steal, cheat and much more. Because there are around one billion too many people on the planet, some level of regulation is required in most aspects of life.

Tools of self-defense (bitcoin being one of them) that enable you to better protect your life, liberty and property definitely raise the costs of violence. The State, of course, is one of the most prominent aggressors. Departments of "pre-crime" are everywhere. The State regularly commits "certain" acts of violence in order to deter "possible" acts of violence. An abomination really.

Regarding "one billion too many people": Who is one of the "too many?" Is it me? Is it you? Who decides? How do you know there are too many?

Reality: There will never be a "perfect" world where violence does not exist. That doesn't preclude us from doing the activities that can help make it better:

1. Education - show others the benefits of peaceful, voluntary association
2. Self-Government ("Autarchy" as coined by Robert LeFevre) - make sure that we, ourselves, are not violators of other people's life, liberty and property.
3. Self-Defense - continue building the tools that help protect us from the sociopaths and ignorants that do not respond to #1.

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July 12, 2014, 06:16:18 PM
 #9439

This is big news for those who are worried They might turn off the Internet to block bitcoin tx's:

http://m.slashdot.org/submission/3694105
tvbcof
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July 12, 2014, 06:34:16 PM
 #9440

Oversight yes in a lot of cases however since unregulated markets often lead to collusion, price fixing, fraud, and other sorts of mischief.


Oversight from whom? Who watches the watchers?

I'm not him, but a possible solution could be to make certain transactions / accountings public.  Oversight and transparency in the way the crowd found out about MtGox's "surprise 200k coins", for instance.  Public blockchains can be useful to provide the public accountability of charities or governmental spending, for instance.

Very well put, and very much a key part of a solution to this very real problem.  I'm a big advocate of transparency.  Off-hand I would say that anyone who earns a living working for the government or using taxpayer money has little privacy, and at certain higher levels, almost none.  They would make a decent living and be paid generously, but they would be in a shit-load of trouble if they abused their authority with real punishment for malfeasance.  I would like it if there were career public servants who worked under a verifiable meritocracy.

People who do NOT make a living off the government are just the opposite.  We would have much more privacy and autonomy than we have now. 

Unfortunately things in the U.S. are going in exactly the wrong direction in this respect, and fairly rapidly.  The danger of this trend is significant.  I do fear that we are on the fast-track to genuine totalitarianism.


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