Conflict Around Bitcoin Is Necessary

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To investors,

The Bitcoin community is unique. It started out with cypherpunks, who are generally activist looking to implement strong cryptography and privacy technology to create change — both social and political. They were eventually joined by others, including technology enthusiasts, investors, and speculators, in driving adoption of the digital currency.

There is bound to be conflict, both philosophically and in practice, when various groups of people come together. They each arrive to the industry with different experiences, different perspectives, different expectations, and different goals. In many cases, the different groups are even optimizing for something different.

This conflict can be confusing for people who are new to Bitcoin. It can also be a turn off as well. But the conflict is an important part of Bitcoin’s journey to become the next global reserve currency. If we are going to have a new asset rise to dominance, it must be able to withstand every type of attack. These attacks include, but are not limited to, cyber attacks, ideological attacks, physical violence, and information warfare from the state, competing digital currencies, and would be sabotagers masquerading as Bitcoin supporters.

Rather than running from the next conflict or complaining about it, it is helpful to mentally reframe the situation. Don’t think “here is another dumb conflict!” Instead, think of it as a test. Can Bitcoin survive this attack? Will those threatening Bitcoin’s computational superiority, ideological high ground, or decentralization succeed?

The answer so far has been no. Bitcoin has withstood every attack. It has passed every test. These conflicts have not only failed to stop Bitcoin’s success, but it has actually made the asset, and in turn the Bitcoin community, stronger. As Friedrich Nietzsche said (paraphrased), what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.

This idea of seeing conflict through the lens of testing Bitcoin’s resilience has two benefits: (1) It puts the negative aspects of conflict into a positive perspective and (2) it turns ill will against the attacker into a feeling of thankfulness. Now I’m not suggesting that we should go around encouraging people to attack Bitcoin, but I am suggesting a new mental framework that changes the conversation.

It has helped me refrain from emotionally responding to every attack. It is a great way to side step the infamous Twitter debates. And it gives me peace of mind. Bitcoin will succeed or it won’t. In order for us to know whether it is ready for prime time, we must see it prevail in the face of constant attack.

The next time someone is yelling and screaming negatively about Bitcoin….thank them. The next time someone tries to conduct a 51% attack against the network….thank them. And if you see someone trying to do something nefarious…call them out for their fraud and end it with “Thank you. Bitcoin is stronger because of you.”

In eleven years, Bitcoin has gone from creation to one of the most anti-fragile assets in the world. There will be plenty of conflict ahead. We shouldn’t fear this conflict, but rather welcome it with open arms. We need to understand the importance of the conflict. To recognize the conflict as a natural step in the progression of technology. The stronger Bitcoin is, the more durable it will be. The more durable it is, the more likely it is to become the next global reserve currency.

So to anyone who has ever attacked Bitcoin, whether the attack was technological, ideological, or competitive — simply, thank you :)

-Pomp


This installment of Off The Chain is free for everyone. I send this email to our investors daily. If you would also like to receive it every morning, join the 38,000 other investors today.


THE RUNDOWN:

Closer Look at SEC ‘Accredited Investor’ Revamp Suggests Little Will Change: For the first time in nearly 40 years, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is lowering the barriers to investing in private securities. How much lower is unclear, however. Read more.

Ernst & Young Doubles Down On Their Bet With Ethereum: On December 19th 2019, the audit and consulting giant Ernst & Young announced the release of their “third-generation zero-knowledge proof blockchain technology” to the public domain as part of the firm’s effort to make public networks ready for enterprise adoption. Ernst & Young’s advocacy of public blockchain network infrastructure, as opposed to permissioned and private networks, is notable given that the firm’s industry peers have either remained neutral on the public vs. private network debate or have voiced skepticism on the viability of public networks. Read more.

Telegram Tries to ‘Clarify’ Gram Crypto Project Amid Ongoing SEC Fight: Telegram will not integrate a crypto wallet into its messaging app, at least until it gets the green light from U.S. regulators, the company said Monday on its official website. The announcement comes ahead of Telegram’s CEO deposition in Dubai on Tuesday. The post, which appears to be the first official notice addressing the TON blockchain project, is signed by “The Telegram Team” and describes the relationship between Telegram and TON.Read more.

Rivals Signature Bank and Prime Trust Team to Offer Instant Payments for Institutions: Crypto banking competitors Prime Trust and Signature Bank have partnered in a bid to appeal to institutional clients. Signature announced Monday it would be linking its Signet payments platform to Prime Trust's multi-asset settlement platform, creating a new service offering "real-time" settlements for digital asset trades. Read more.

IBM Blockchain App Promotes ‘Virtuous Cycle’ for Sustainable Coffee: IBM is launching a new app that uses blockchain to allow consumers interested in sustainability to trace the coffee they buy along the supply chain. IBM said its new "Thank My Farmer" app will allow consumers to track their morning joe from the store where they buy it back to the farm where it was grown. Built in collaboration with traceability platform Farm Connect, which also uses IBM's blockchain, the app is expected to launch sometime this year. It was unveiled at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Read more.


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LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE OF THE OFF THE CHAIN PODCAST HERE


Darius Dale is the Managing Director and Partner at Hedgeye Risk Management. He is one of the most well rounded thinkers around markets that I know and this conversation didn’t disappoint. Darius’ unique perspective should give you a lot to think about, so I highly recommend listening to this one!

In this conversation, Darius and I discuss:

  • The macro economy

  • Monetary policy

  • The role of the Federal Reserve

  • China’s economic development

  • Bitcoin’s future potential

  • The importance of financial literacy in today’s world

I really enjoyed this conversation with Darius. Hopefully you enjoy it too.

LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE OF THE OFF THE CHAIN PODCAST HERE


Interested in crypto research? Look no further. The premier research firm in the space, Delphi Digital, has two subscription offerings for individuals and institutions alike. Take a look at their Bitcoin and Ethereum reports to get a taste of their analysis. [Click here]


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Nothing in this email is intended to serve as financial advice. Do your own research.