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I'm old, and I don't get Bitcoin [Cryptocurrency and society].

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Posts

  • Inquisitor77Inquisitor77 2 x Penny Arcade Fight Club Champion A fixed point in space and timeRegistered User regular
    We really need to beef up white collar crime enforcement and penalties.

    Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind; and the third is to be kind.
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  • TL DRTL DR Not at all confident in his reflexive opinions of thingsRegistered User regular
    TL DR wrote: »
    Exchanges are a problem and require trusting a party, and the existing crypto exchanges also have problems with government regulation in terms of keeping client records, being subject to subpoena, etc, but those problems don't necessarily apply to an appropriately-designed currency and the performance of transactions using that currency.

    Looking at our current situation, cash dollars being only an in-person physical mode of exchange, credit cards being subject to fees and malicious financial firms, Paypal etc being basically-unregulated and with perverse incentives in terms of banning people without recompense, as well as the various privacy concerns, are all design flaws in our current mediums of exchange.

    Ideally I could transfer money to someone anywhere in the world, instantly, for free or at a trivial cost, without interference. Neither crypto nor anything else currently accomplish that.


    a) This isn't an actual problem in the real world. The vast majority of people can transfer funds whenever they want, wherever they want. Including to other countries. This only becomes an issue when you are transferring huge amounts of money.

    b) Crypto doesn't solve this imaginary problem. It sidesteps it by preventing anyone from auditing the transaction. That's not the same thing.

    Nobody disagrees with the notion that you should be able to transfer your funds anytime, anywhere. When talking about reasonable sums of money, it actually isn't that hard to do this. The issue with larger sums is that you run into reporting requirements because people want to know that you're sending $5,000,000 to a different country, because you can't just move your money around and not expect to pay taxes or get checked for fraud.

    Again, the system works fine for pretty much everyone, including the uber-wealthy. The only time it becomes an actual problem are when you are trying to move your money and you don't want anyone to know about it.

    Which begs the question of why? And then further begs the question of what kind of society are we going to live in when the people with the most money are able to operate in a medium of exchange that has absolutely no audit trail whatsoever?

    Because that is the fundamental reason cryptocurrencies ostensibly exist. They aren't solving an efficiency problem. They aren't solving an inflation/deflation/supply/demand problem. They are solving the problem of I don't want anyone to know how much money I have and what I am doing with my money.

    This isn't actually true, though. Ask around and see how many of your friends have had legit funds locked by Paypal or other bad actors, or look at folks who suffer from predatory behavior by credit card companies. And that's not even getting to the real issue, which is "things that are illegal or considered disdainful by said companies such that people can't get financial services" - this means sex work, cannabis dispensaries, political dissidents, etc. I'd actually argue that it's less worthwhile to develop a technical solution when the problem could be resolved by passing appropriate laws protecting sex workers and decriminalizing sex workers and protecting political speech, etc, but it's undeniable that a use case for these technologies exists or people wouldn't be using them other than as an investment vehicle or ideological statement.

    Julius
  • Inquisitor77Inquisitor77 2 x Penny Arcade Fight Club Champion A fixed point in space and timeRegistered User regular
    a) Paypal is not a bank. Expecting them to be subject to the same rules and regulations is a red herring argument. If I put my money in with Lending Club and lose all my money, should I then expect to get my money back via the FDIC? Or should I expect that since Lending Club was never a bank to begin with, maybe I should've made an informed decision?

    b) Predatory behavior from credit card companies is not a positive argument for the use of crytpocurrencies. Cryptocurrencies do not prevent you from getting screwed. See: Every news article that comes out about cryptocurrency exchanges. Shitty regulations and enforcement against credit card companies is an argument for better regulations and enforcement, not for a system that cannot be regulated at all.

    c) I agree with you - we should be giving marijuana dispensaries access to banks. We should seriously consider whether outlawing any and all sex work has actually benefited society. The inability for illegal activities to use the legitimate banking system is a feature, not a bug. This puts front-and-center the debate over whether certain behaviors should be legal or not, and the extent of their regulation. Which is a discussion that society at large should be having. You know what isn't a valid solution? Let's make everything and anything de facto legal and unregulated by default because you can't track the transaction! A system has always existed for illegan and less-than-legal activities to use a currency of exchange. It's called cash. But they do not have larger access to banking and financial systems because they are linked to improper behaviors, not because the cash itself is flawed. The idea that you should wholesale replace the existing medium of exchange because drug dealers have a harder time getting interest on their savings accounts is laughable.

    d) I agree with you regarding your final point as well. The vast majority of non-speculative use for cryptocurrencies is in illegal activities. Which begs the question of why you would want them to have access to such a system in the first place? To solve problems that don't exist for legitimate users of the system?

    Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind; and the third is to be kind.
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  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    I am not sure “paypal is shitty use scampal” is a good answer.

    wbBv3fj.png
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  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    shryke wrote: »
    TL DR wrote: »
    Exchanges are a problem and require trusting a party, and the existing crypto exchanges also have problems with government regulation in terms of keeping client records, being subject to subpoena, etc, but those problems don't necessarily apply to an appropriately-designed currency and the performance of transactions using that currency.

    Looking at our current situation, cash dollars being only an in-person physical mode of exchange, credit cards being subject to fees and malicious financial firms, Paypal etc being basically-unregulated and with perverse incentives in terms of banning people without recompense, as well as the various privacy concerns, are all design flaws in our current mediums of exchange.

    Ideally I could transfer money to someone anywhere in the world, instantly, for free or at a trivial cost, without interference. Neither crypto nor anything else currently accomplish that.

    That's not possible and I wouldn't even say ideal. Someone should be watching where all the money is going and why.

    Which someone should that be?

  • AridholAridhol Registered User regular
    Julius wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    TL DR wrote: »
    Exchanges are a problem and require trusting a party, and the existing crypto exchanges also have problems with government regulation in terms of keeping client records, being subject to subpoena, etc, but those problems don't necessarily apply to an appropriately-designed currency and the performance of transactions using that currency.

    Looking at our current situation, cash dollars being only an in-person physical mode of exchange, credit cards being subject to fees and malicious financial firms, Paypal etc being basically-unregulated and with perverse incentives in terms of banning people without recompense, as well as the various privacy concerns, are all design flaws in our current mediums of exchange.

    Ideally I could transfer money to someone anywhere in the world, instantly, for free or at a trivial cost, without interference. Neither crypto nor anything else currently accomplish that.

    That's not possible and I wouldn't even say ideal. Someone should be watching where all the money is going and why.

    Which someone should that be?

    Mr. John Q. Goverment, esq.

    JuliusshrykeDarkPrimusOrcaEtiowsaYoutubeRhesus PositiveStabbity StyleElvenshaefurlionGennenalyse RuebenKristmas KthulhuTofystedeth
  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    Aridhol wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    TL DR wrote: »
    Exchanges are a problem and require trusting a party, and the existing crypto exchanges also have problems with government regulation in terms of keeping client records, being subject to subpoena, etc, but those problems don't necessarily apply to an appropriately-designed currency and the performance of transactions using that currency.

    Looking at our current situation, cash dollars being only an in-person physical mode of exchange, credit cards being subject to fees and malicious financial firms, Paypal etc being basically-unregulated and with perverse incentives in terms of banning people without recompense, as well as the various privacy concerns, are all design flaws in our current mediums of exchange.

    Ideally I could transfer money to someone anywhere in the world, instantly, for free or at a trivial cost, without interference. Neither crypto nor anything else currently accomplish that.

    That's not possible and I wouldn't even say ideal. Someone should be watching where all the money is going and why.

    Which someone should that be?

    Mr. John Q. Goverment, esq.

    Oh yeah I love that guy. Any NSA agents reading this should know I love their work and would never break any law, real or imagined.

    Aridhol
  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    Julius wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    TL DR wrote: »
    Exchanges are a problem and require trusting a party, and the existing crypto exchanges also have problems with government regulation in terms of keeping client records, being subject to subpoena, etc, but those problems don't necessarily apply to an appropriately-designed currency and the performance of transactions using that currency.

    Looking at our current situation, cash dollars being only an in-person physical mode of exchange, credit cards being subject to fees and malicious financial firms, Paypal etc being basically-unregulated and with perverse incentives in terms of banning people without recompense, as well as the various privacy concerns, are all design flaws in our current mediums of exchange.

    Ideally I could transfer money to someone anywhere in the world, instantly, for free or at a trivial cost, without interference. Neither crypto nor anything else currently accomplish that.

    That's not possible and I wouldn't even say ideal. Someone should be watching where all the money is going and why.

    Which someone should that be?

    The government. That's part of their job. Tracking tax evasion, fraud, money laundering, etc, etc, etc.

    OrcaJaysonFourkimemrondeauYoutubeelectricitylikesmeStabbity StyleElvenshaebowenMidniteGennenalyse RuebenKristmas Kthulhuchrishallett83
  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    shryke wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    TL DR wrote: »
    Exchanges are a problem and require trusting a party, and the existing crypto exchanges also have problems with government regulation in terms of keeping client records, being subject to subpoena, etc, but those problems don't necessarily apply to an appropriately-designed currency and the performance of transactions using that currency.

    Looking at our current situation, cash dollars being only an in-person physical mode of exchange, credit cards being subject to fees and malicious financial firms, Paypal etc being basically-unregulated and with perverse incentives in terms of banning people without recompense, as well as the various privacy concerns, are all design flaws in our current mediums of exchange.

    Ideally I could transfer money to someone anywhere in the world, instantly, for free or at a trivial cost, without interference. Neither crypto nor anything else currently accomplish that.

    That's not possible and I wouldn't even say ideal. Someone should be watching where all the money is going and why.

    Which someone should that be?

    The government. That's part of their job. Tracking tax evasion, fraud, money laundering, etc, etc, etc.

    Also making sure you don't sell sex or weed or support communists or whatever.

    The government can be wrong. It often is wrong. I don't think they should simply have access to all our financial transactions. I don't think that if TLDR or someone else wants to sell me dick pics that the US government should be aware of that and arrest them and throw them in prison. Nor do I think that it is good to have zero financial freedom under authoritarian and theological regimes. If, say, a Saudi journalist would sell me his story I'd like a way of compensating them that wasn't trackable by the Saudi government.

    I love the government as much as the next guy, but I don't think that means human exchange should be entirely at their mercy.

    TL DR
  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    Julius wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    TL DR wrote: »
    Exchanges are a problem and require trusting a party, and the existing crypto exchanges also have problems with government regulation in terms of keeping client records, being subject to subpoena, etc, but those problems don't necessarily apply to an appropriately-designed currency and the performance of transactions using that currency.

    Looking at our current situation, cash dollars being only an in-person physical mode of exchange, credit cards being subject to fees and malicious financial firms, Paypal etc being basically-unregulated and with perverse incentives in terms of banning people without recompense, as well as the various privacy concerns, are all design flaws in our current mediums of exchange.

    Ideally I could transfer money to someone anywhere in the world, instantly, for free or at a trivial cost, without interference. Neither crypto nor anything else currently accomplish that.

    That's not possible and I wouldn't even say ideal. Someone should be watching where all the money is going and why.

    Which someone should that be?

    The government. That's part of their job. Tracking tax evasion, fraud, money laundering, etc, etc, etc.

    Also making sure you don't sell sex or weed or support communists or whatever.

    The government can be wrong. It often is wrong. I don't think they should simply have access to all our financial transactions. I don't think that if TLDR or someone else wants to sell me dick pics that the US government should be aware of that and arrest them and throw them in prison. Nor do I think that it is good to have zero financial freedom under authoritarian and theological regimes. If, say, a Saudi journalist would sell me his story I'd like a way of compensating them that wasn't trackable by the Saudi government.

    I love the government as much as the next guy, but I don't think that means human exchange should be entirely at their mercy.

    The government can change though. Whereas if no one is looking at all, then the government can't effect the system at all.

    Fencingsaxelectricitylikesme
  • TL DRTL DR Not at all confident in his reflexive opinions of thingsRegistered User regular
    That someday there might not be a legitimate need for secrecy isn't going to persuade people today from pursuing secrecy, though.

    JuliusShadow Demon
  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    edited February 7
    TL DR wrote: »
    That someday there might not be a legitimate need for secrecy isn't going to persuade people today from pursuing secrecy, though.

    Except there is a current legitimate need for transparency. Because where all the money goes matters a lot. Rich people love trying to hide that shit.

    shryke on
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  • TL DRTL DR Not at all confident in his reflexive opinions of thingsRegistered User regular
    shryke wrote: »
    TL DR wrote: »
    That someday there might not be a legitimate need for secrecy isn't going to persuade people today from pursuing secrecy, though.

    Except there is a current legitimate need for transparency. Because where all the money goes matters a lot. Rich people love trying to hide that shit.

    I agree, though I'd be curious that crypto is currently enabling crime on the scale larger than 'a pretty big drug dealer', as opposed to more nefarious financial subterfuge like "Apple stashing their wealth in tax havens in front of everyone because even when the money is right there we refuse to do anything about it"

    Julius
  • LoisLaneLoisLane Registered User regular
    TL DR wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    TL DR wrote: »
    That someday there might not be a legitimate need for secrecy isn't going to persuade people today from pursuing secrecy, though.

    Except there is a current legitimate need for transparency. Because where all the money goes matters a lot. Rich people love trying to hide that shit.

    I agree, though I'd be curious that crypto is currently enabling crime on the scale larger than 'a pretty big drug dealer', as opposed to more nefarious financial subterfuge like "Apple stashing their wealth in tax havens in front of everyone because even when the money is right there we refuse to do anything about it"

    If crypto wasn’t so volatile it would probably enable that too but it is so most wouldn’t.

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  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    TL DR wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    TL DR wrote: »
    That someday there might not be a legitimate need for secrecy isn't going to persuade people today from pursuing secrecy, though.

    Except there is a current legitimate need for transparency. Because where all the money goes matters a lot. Rich people love trying to hide that shit.

    I agree, though I'd be curious that crypto is currently enabling crime on the scale larger than 'a pretty big drug dealer', as opposed to more nefarious financial subterfuge like "Apple stashing their wealth in tax havens in front of everyone because even when the money is right there we refuse to do anything about it"

    On the hiding money front, crypto is more just stupid and obviously missing why all these banking regulations exist in the first place. In general though we want to know where money is going.

    The larger issue with crypto as it relates to societal harm is it's a massive massive waste of power. It's basically destroying a ton of limited resources and warming the planet for zero benefit to society.

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  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    shryke wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    TL DR wrote: »
    Exchanges are a problem and require trusting a party, and the existing crypto exchanges also have problems with government regulation in terms of keeping client records, being subject to subpoena, etc, but those problems don't necessarily apply to an appropriately-designed currency and the performance of transactions using that currency.

    Looking at our current situation, cash dollars being only an in-person physical mode of exchange, credit cards being subject to fees and malicious financial firms, Paypal etc being basically-unregulated and with perverse incentives in terms of banning people without recompense, as well as the various privacy concerns, are all design flaws in our current mediums of exchange.

    Ideally I could transfer money to someone anywhere in the world, instantly, for free or at a trivial cost, without interference. Neither crypto nor anything else currently accomplish that.

    That's not possible and I wouldn't even say ideal. Someone should be watching where all the money is going and why.

    Which someone should that be?

    The government. That's part of their job. Tracking tax evasion, fraud, money laundering, etc, etc, etc.

    Also making sure you don't sell sex or weed or support communists or whatever.

    The government can be wrong. It often is wrong. I don't think they should simply have access to all our financial transactions. I don't think that if TLDR or someone else wants to sell me dick pics that the US government should be aware of that and arrest them and throw them in prison. Nor do I think that it is good to have zero financial freedom under authoritarian and theological regimes. If, say, a Saudi journalist would sell me his story I'd like a way of compensating them that wasn't trackable by the Saudi government.

    I love the government as much as the next guy, but I don't think that means human exchange should be entirely at their mercy.

    The government can change though. Whereas if no one is looking at all, then the government can't effect the system at all.

    The government hasn't changed very fast though, and I'm not even sure it has changed for the better. Also it is zero percent comforting to know that the government may eventually not throw people in jail for 30 years for selling a bit of weed.

    The reason I responded to this was TL DR bringing up sex work. I know a lot of women and men who sell pictures or sex for various reasons, including women paying for education, trans women paying for treatments, people getting back on their feet after shit and such. It's all illegal (USA), but not at all morally wrong. It is objectively good.

    But the US government sends police on that. And companies like paypal crack down on these things to avoid getting destroyed by the police. None of that results in a safer community free from terrorists or whatever, it just results in a lot of women and men losing sources of income they need. Shit, they can end up in prison for engaging in mutually satisfactory transactions. Do you honestly think that the fact that fundie Christians may eventually lose power is any comfort?

  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    Also, I note that the examples you gave (tax evasion, fraud, money laundering) are about denying the government it's due cut, rather than shit that directly hurts the people.


    And I wouldn't be the first to point out that these millionaires and billionaires didn't need cryptocurrencies to avoid taxes or launder their money. The Panama Papers weren't about people buying crypto to hide their money, the system provides more than enough ways to do all that shit already.

  • Phoenix-DPhoenix-D Registered User regular
    A form of internet cash could be quite useful. Because Visa status Al are private companies and as such can ban you from using their serviceals for whatever. Including simply not liking your legal product.

    Crypto is very bad at that still.

    Julius
  • Inquisitor77Inquisitor77 2 x Penny Arcade Fight Club Champion A fixed point in space and timeRegistered User regular
    edited February 7
    Tax evasion, fraud, and money-laundering are all things that directly hurt "the people". They erode the public trust and allow for people to leech from the system without paying their fair due. Denying the government is denying me, because I am the government. I may not agree with everything it does, and I may not agree entirely with its processes, but it is the political system in which I participate and in which I am granted power (and in which I grant power to others). Pretending like taxes just go to "the government" and that this government is somehow separate from my citizenship assumes that I'm living in an autocratic state.

    So sure, maybe if I live in a dictatorship I want a cryptocurrency around. But I'm pretty sure I don't. And I don't think that dictatorships existing is a problem that somehow magically gets solved by the existence of cryptocurrencies. I'm about 99.99% certain that the widespread existence and adoption of cryptocurrencies would in fact make de facto plutocracies the norm rather than the exception.

    The fact that rich people can launder money without having to use cryptocurrencies is not an affirmative argument for cryptocurrencies. The Panama Papers likely would not exist at all if everyone used cryptocurrencies. You would just send an anonymous encrypted text or have conversations via burner phones to perform and confirm transactions. (Which is, again, the entire point of a cryptocurrency.)

    Imagine all the illegal shit that happens now via cash, or all the illegal shit that is difficult or impossible to do with just cash transactions. Imagine that people are able to do that with a digital currency that is untraceable and cannot be audited. Who needs to launder money when no one knows how much money you actually have or where it comes from, and you can spend it however you want without anyone else knowing?

    The perfect is not the enemy of the good. The fact that bad things happen now is not an affirmative argument for even worse things happening in the future.

    Inquisitor77 on
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  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    Phoenix-D wrote: »
    A form of internet cash could be quite useful. Because Visa status Al are private companies and as such can ban you from using their serviceals for whatever. Including simply not liking your legal product.

    Crypto is very bad at that still.

    Oh yeah not claiming crypto is good for this purpose. Point is just that one part of the promised benefits is something we want.

    If at some point crypto works to provide that it's great, if something else does it's also great.

  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    But it's not. Society has a direct material interest in where it's money is going. There are no reasons for hiding money that don't come down to changing legislation rather then trying to invent secret money.

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  • JepheryJephery Registered User regular
    edited February 7
    Julius wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    TL DR wrote: »
    Exchanges are a problem and require trusting a party, and the existing crypto exchanges also have problems with government regulation in terms of keeping client records, being subject to subpoena, etc, but those problems don't necessarily apply to an appropriately-designed currency and the performance of transactions using that currency.

    Looking at our current situation, cash dollars being only an in-person physical mode of exchange, credit cards being subject to fees and malicious financial firms, Paypal etc being basically-unregulated and with perverse incentives in terms of banning people without recompense, as well as the various privacy concerns, are all design flaws in our current mediums of exchange.

    Ideally I could transfer money to someone anywhere in the world, instantly, for free or at a trivial cost, without interference. Neither crypto nor anything else currently accomplish that.

    That's not possible and I wouldn't even say ideal. Someone should be watching where all the money is going and why.

    Which someone should that be?

    The government. That's part of their job. Tracking tax evasion, fraud, money laundering, etc, etc, etc.

    Also making sure you don't sell sex or weed or support communists or whatever.

    The government can be wrong. It often is wrong. I don't think they should simply have access to all our financial transactions. I don't think that if TLDR or someone else wants to sell me dick pics that the US government should be aware of that and arrest them and throw them in prison. Nor do I think that it is good to have zero financial freedom under authoritarian and theological regimes. If, say, a Saudi journalist would sell me his story I'd like a way of compensating them that wasn't trackable by the Saudi government.

    I love the government as much as the next guy, but I don't think that means human exchange should be entirely at their mercy.

    Cryptocurrency is not the answer to financial control by political elites. If cryptocurrency ever got big enough, elites would take control of it. They are after all, the elite. Its already proven that you can hijack control of cryptocurrency networks though 51% attacks.

    Its the same story with gold bugs thinking that going back on the gold standard would somehow stick it to the bankers and current elites. When gold mattered, the bankers and elite controlled the gold.

    Jephery on
    }
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  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    Tax evasion, fraud, and money-laundering are all things that directly hurt "the people". They erode the public trust and allow for people to leech from the system without paying their fair due. Denying the government is denying me, because I am the government. I may not agree with everything it does, and I may not agree entirely with its processes, but it is the political system in which I participate and in which I am granted power (and in which I grant power to others). Pretending like taxes just go to "the government" and that this government is somehow separate from my citizenship assumes that I'm living in an autocratic state.

    So sure, maybe if I live in a dictatorship I want a cryptocurrency around. But I'm pretty sure I don't. And I don't think that dictatorships existing is a problem that somehow magically gets solved by the existence of cryptocurrencies. I'm about 99.99% certain that the widespread existence and adoption of cryptocurrencies would in fact make de facto plutocracies the norm rather than the exception.

    The fact that rich people can launder money without having to use cryptocurrencies is not an affirmative argument for cryptocurrencies. The Panama Papers likely would not exist at all if everyone used cryptocurrencies. You would just send an anonymous encrypted text or have conversations via burner phones to perform and confirm transactions. (Which is, again, the entire point of a cryptocurrency.)

    Imagine all the illegal shit that happens now via cash, or all the illegal shit that is difficult or impossible to do with just cash transactions. Imagine that people are able to do that with a digital currency that is untraceable and cannot be audited. Who needs to launder money when no one knows how much money you actually have or where it comes from, and you can spend it however you want without anyone else knowing?

    The perfect is not the enemy of the good. The fact that bad things happen now is not an affirmative argument for even worse things happening in the future.

    I don't understand how you get to the conclusion that some viable electronic cash system would be worse than what we have now. For one thing, the need to launder money would be the same since it's about obtaining that money legally. Zero difference between a million cash under the floor boards or in some wallet. The italicized bit there already applies to cash.

    Barring an One World Government, or even a Part World goverment, the rich people thing is also irrelevant to method. It doesn't really matter where they stash their money as long as it is out of reach. There is no difference between dropping 500k cash at the physical bank or transferring it via crypto. It saves you a trip but is no more traceable.

    I do think you live in a dictatorship that outlaws selling sex and drugs, but it is besides the point. The idea is not that it would change regimes, it is that it would save lives. Writing articles critical of the authoritarian government may not be any more effective, but at least you could do so without getting killed.

    (side note: directly hurting the people is about getting jailed and denied care and food and such. If laws remain the same it doesn't matter if shit erodes the public trust or whatever. It is not like gaining more money from taxes means welfare payments are increased.)

  • JepheryJephery Registered User regular
    edited February 7
    Julius wrote: »
    Tax evasion, fraud, and money-laundering are all things that directly hurt "the people". They erode the public trust and allow for people to leech from the system without paying their fair due. Denying the government is denying me, because I am the government. I may not agree with everything it does, and I may not agree entirely with its processes, but it is the political system in which I participate and in which I am granted power (and in which I grant power to others). Pretending like taxes just go to "the government" and that this government is somehow separate from my citizenship assumes that I'm living in an autocratic state.

    So sure, maybe if I live in a dictatorship I want a cryptocurrency around. But I'm pretty sure I don't. And I don't think that dictatorships existing is a problem that somehow magically gets solved by the existence of cryptocurrencies. I'm about 99.99% certain that the widespread existence and adoption of cryptocurrencies would in fact make de facto plutocracies the norm rather than the exception.

    The fact that rich people can launder money without having to use cryptocurrencies is not an affirmative argument for cryptocurrencies. The Panama Papers likely would not exist at all if everyone used cryptocurrencies. You would just send an anonymous encrypted text or have conversations via burner phones to perform and confirm transactions. (Which is, again, the entire point of a cryptocurrency.)

    Imagine all the illegal shit that happens now via cash, or all the illegal shit that is difficult or impossible to do with just cash transactions. Imagine that people are able to do that with a digital currency that is untraceable and cannot be audited. Who needs to launder money when no one knows how much money you actually have or where it comes from, and you can spend it however you want without anyone else knowing?

    The perfect is not the enemy of the good. The fact that bad things happen now is not an affirmative argument for even worse things happening in the future.

    I don't understand how you get to the conclusion that some viable electronic cash system would be worse than what we have now. For one thing, the need to launder money would be the same since it's about obtaining that money legally. Zero difference between a million cash under the floor boards or in some wallet. The italicized bit there already applies to cash.

    Barring an One World Government, or even a Part World goverment, the rich people thing is also irrelevant to method. It doesn't really matter where they stash their money as long as it is out of reach. There is no difference between dropping 500k cash at the physical bank or transferring it via crypto. It saves you a trip but is no more traceable.

    I do think you live in a dictatorship that outlaws selling sex and drugs, but it is besides the point. The idea is not that it would change regimes, it is that it would save lives. Writing articles critical of the authoritarian government may not be any more effective, but at least you could do so without getting killed.

    (side note: directly hurting the people is about getting jailed and denied care and food and such. If laws remain the same it doesn't matter if shit erodes the public trust or whatever. It is not like gaining more money from taxes means welfare payments are increased.)

    Somehow in your hypothetical scenario there is a terrible government but people still have digital privacy, consistent access to the the internet, and the government doesn't have the internet on lockdown.

    All it takes for a cartel or government to get your cryptocurrency is a wrench, your phone, and beating the shit out of you until you give up your password, to paraphase XCKD.

    The focus on currencies in these situations is ridiculous. The problem is that people are not free to conduct economic transactions for various reasons (crime, oppression, economic failure), not that people don't have a means of hiding economic exchange.

    Jephery on
    }
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  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    shryke wrote: »
    But it's not. Society has a direct material interest in where it's money is going. There are no reasons for hiding money that don't come down to changing legislation rather then trying to invent secret money.

    The reason is that changing legislation is very slow and there is no reason to assume change would be for the better. Americans elected a fascist with a religious fundie as second, doesn't look like change is on the agenda.


    But you're avoiding the point that it's about now. It doesn't matter if the law gets changed in 10 years if you need money now. And it doesn't matter that the law might get changed in 10 years when you are doing things that do zero harm now. If these actions are moral it would be wrong to arrest people over them, and we should approve of initiatives that help them avoid arrest.

  • RickRudeRickRude Registered User regular
    Pretty sure this is on topic.

    More information on the investigation of the murder of a beautiful young girl by two known bit coin scammers. If not, sorry, knew the girl and wanted to post somewhere for her memory

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.buzzfeednews.com/amphtml/josephbernstein/tomi-masters-down-the-rabbit-hole-i-go

  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    Jephery wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    Tax evasion, fraud, and money-laundering are all things that directly hurt "the people". They erode the public trust and allow for people to leech from the system without paying their fair due. Denying the government is denying me, because I am the government. I may not agree with everything it does, and I may not agree entirely with its processes, but it is the political system in which I participate and in which I am granted power (and in which I grant power to others). Pretending like taxes just go to "the government" and that this government is somehow separate from my citizenship assumes that I'm living in an autocratic state.

    So sure, maybe if I live in a dictatorship I want a cryptocurrency around. But I'm pretty sure I don't. And I don't think that dictatorships existing is a problem that somehow magically gets solved by the existence of cryptocurrencies. I'm about 99.99% certain that the widespread existence and adoption of cryptocurrencies would in fact make de facto plutocracies the norm rather than the exception.

    The fact that rich people can launder money without having to use cryptocurrencies is not an affirmative argument for cryptocurrencies. The Panama Papers likely would not exist at all if everyone used cryptocurrencies. You would just send an anonymous encrypted text or have conversations via burner phones to perform and confirm transactions. (Which is, again, the entire point of a cryptocurrency.)

    Imagine all the illegal shit that happens now via cash, or all the illegal shit that is difficult or impossible to do with just cash transactions. Imagine that people are able to do that with a digital currency that is untraceable and cannot be audited. Who needs to launder money when no one knows how much money you actually have or where it comes from, and you can spend it however you want without anyone else knowing?

    The perfect is not the enemy of the good. The fact that bad things happen now is not an affirmative argument for even worse things happening in the future.

    I don't understand how you get to the conclusion that some viable electronic cash system would be worse than what we have now. For one thing, the need to launder money would be the same since it's about obtaining that money legally. Zero difference between a million cash under the floor boards or in some wallet. The italicized bit there already applies to cash.

    Barring an One World Government, or even a Part World goverment, the rich people thing is also irrelevant to method. It doesn't really matter where they stash their money as long as it is out of reach. There is no difference between dropping 500k cash at the physical bank or transferring it via crypto. It saves you a trip but is no more traceable.

    I do think you live in a dictatorship that outlaws selling sex and drugs, but it is besides the point. The idea is not that it would change regimes, it is that it would save lives. Writing articles critical of the authoritarian government may not be any more effective, but at least you could do so without getting killed.

    (side note: directly hurting the people is about getting jailed and denied care and food and such. If laws remain the same it doesn't matter if shit erodes the public trust or whatever. It is not like gaining more money from taxes means welfare payments are increased.)

    Somehow in your hypothetical scenario there is a terrible government but people still have digital privacy, consistent access to the the internet, and the government doesn't have the internet on lockdown.

    All it takes for a cartel or government to get your cryptocurrency is a wrench, your phone, and beating the shit out of you until you give up your password, to paraphase XCKD.

    The focus on currencies in these situations is ridiculous. The problem is that people are not free to conduct economic transactions for various reasons (crime, oppression, economic failure), not that people don't have a means of hiding economic exchange.

    I mean do you think I'm not for digital privacy or something?

    As you say, the problem is that people are not free to conduct their transactions. I'm saying that a way to be free, digitally, is something we want. It doesn't need to be crypto, crypto probably wouldn't work. Something else might come along. I just reject the idea that it would be good to have all our possible transactions overlooked by the government.

  • Inquisitor77Inquisitor77 2 x Penny Arcade Fight Club Champion A fixed point in space and timeRegistered User regular
    Is that an actual world we live in? Where the government tracks all our transactions?

    I feel like if that were the case then Donald Trump wouldn't be the president right now.

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  • JepheryJephery Registered User regular
    edited February 7
    Julius wrote: »
    Jephery wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    Tax evasion, fraud, and money-laundering are all things that directly hurt "the people". They erode the public trust and allow for people to leech from the system without paying their fair due. Denying the government is denying me, because I am the government. I may not agree with everything it does, and I may not agree entirely with its processes, but it is the political system in which I participate and in which I am granted power (and in which I grant power to others). Pretending like taxes just go to "the government" and that this government is somehow separate from my citizenship assumes that I'm living in an autocratic state.

    So sure, maybe if I live in a dictatorship I want a cryptocurrency around. But I'm pretty sure I don't. And I don't think that dictatorships existing is a problem that somehow magically gets solved by the existence of cryptocurrencies. I'm about 99.99% certain that the widespread existence and adoption of cryptocurrencies would in fact make de facto plutocracies the norm rather than the exception.

    The fact that rich people can launder money without having to use cryptocurrencies is not an affirmative argument for cryptocurrencies. The Panama Papers likely would not exist at all if everyone used cryptocurrencies. You would just send an anonymous encrypted text or have conversations via burner phones to perform and confirm transactions. (Which is, again, the entire point of a cryptocurrency.)

    Imagine all the illegal shit that happens now via cash, or all the illegal shit that is difficult or impossible to do with just cash transactions. Imagine that people are able to do that with a digital currency that is untraceable and cannot be audited. Who needs to launder money when no one knows how much money you actually have or where it comes from, and you can spend it however you want without anyone else knowing?

    The perfect is not the enemy of the good. The fact that bad things happen now is not an affirmative argument for even worse things happening in the future.

    I don't understand how you get to the conclusion that some viable electronic cash system would be worse than what we have now. For one thing, the need to launder money would be the same since it's about obtaining that money legally. Zero difference between a million cash under the floor boards or in some wallet. The italicized bit there already applies to cash.

    Barring an One World Government, or even a Part World goverment, the rich people thing is also irrelevant to method. It doesn't really matter where they stash their money as long as it is out of reach. There is no difference between dropping 500k cash at the physical bank or transferring it via crypto. It saves you a trip but is no more traceable.

    I do think you live in a dictatorship that outlaws selling sex and drugs, but it is besides the point. The idea is not that it would change regimes, it is that it would save lives. Writing articles critical of the authoritarian government may not be any more effective, but at least you could do so without getting killed.

    (side note: directly hurting the people is about getting jailed and denied care and food and such. If laws remain the same it doesn't matter if shit erodes the public trust or whatever. It is not like gaining more money from taxes means welfare payments are increased.)

    Somehow in your hypothetical scenario there is a terrible government but people still have digital privacy, consistent access to the the internet, and the government doesn't have the internet on lockdown.

    All it takes for a cartel or government to get your cryptocurrency is a wrench, your phone, and beating the shit out of you until you give up your password, to paraphase XCKD.

    The focus on currencies in these situations is ridiculous. The problem is that people are not free to conduct economic transactions for various reasons (crime, oppression, economic failure), not that people don't have a means of hiding economic exchange.

    I mean do you think I'm not for digital privacy or something?

    As you say, the problem is that people are not free to conduct their transactions. I'm saying that a way to be free, digitally, is something we want. It doesn't need to be crypto, crypto probably wouldn't work. Something else might come along. I just reject the idea that it would be good to have all our possible transactions overlooked by the government.

    Having legal recourse is an important part of living in our current societies and having our transactions be tracked is important for that. The other side of untrackable, irreversible transactions is that you can't figure out who just robbed or scammed you.

    You can't show me a new economic transaction system, without overthrowing our entire political-economic system, that somehow doesn't favor the socio-economic elite more than the little guy, because the socio-economic elite is the group that is going to implement any such system.

    I think something to reflect on is how the internet went from being seen as a force for democratic revolution and mass enlightenment, to being in reality another part of the authoritarian toolbox and a fountain of misinformation and propaganda. The systems we dream of get to be implemented and controlled by the current rulers of this world, not the rulers we wish for it (cyberpunk in a nutshell).

    Jephery on
    }
    "Orkses never lose a battle. If we win we win, if we die we die fightin so it don't count. If we runs for it we don't die neither, cos we can come back for annuver go, see!".
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  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    Julius wrote: »
    Jephery wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    Tax evasion, fraud, and money-laundering are all things that directly hurt "the people". They erode the public trust and allow for people to leech from the system without paying their fair due. Denying the government is denying me, because I am the government. I may not agree with everything it does, and I may not agree entirely with its processes, but it is the political system in which I participate and in which I am granted power (and in which I grant power to others). Pretending like taxes just go to "the government" and that this government is somehow separate from my citizenship assumes that I'm living in an autocratic state.

    So sure, maybe if I live in a dictatorship I want a cryptocurrency around. But I'm pretty sure I don't. And I don't think that dictatorships existing is a problem that somehow magically gets solved by the existence of cryptocurrencies. I'm about 99.99% certain that the widespread existence and adoption of cryptocurrencies would in fact make de facto plutocracies the norm rather than the exception.

    The fact that rich people can launder money without having to use cryptocurrencies is not an affirmative argument for cryptocurrencies. The Panama Papers likely would not exist at all if everyone used cryptocurrencies. You would just send an anonymous encrypted text or have conversations via burner phones to perform and confirm transactions. (Which is, again, the entire point of a cryptocurrency.)

    Imagine all the illegal shit that happens now via cash, or all the illegal shit that is difficult or impossible to do with just cash transactions. Imagine that people are able to do that with a digital currency that is untraceable and cannot be audited. Who needs to launder money when no one knows how much money you actually have or where it comes from, and you can spend it however you want without anyone else knowing?

    The perfect is not the enemy of the good. The fact that bad things happen now is not an affirmative argument for even worse things happening in the future.

    I don't understand how you get to the conclusion that some viable electronic cash system would be worse than what we have now. For one thing, the need to launder money would be the same since it's about obtaining that money legally. Zero difference between a million cash under the floor boards or in some wallet. The italicized bit there already applies to cash.

    Barring an One World Government, or even a Part World goverment, the rich people thing is also irrelevant to method. It doesn't really matter where they stash their money as long as it is out of reach. There is no difference between dropping 500k cash at the physical bank or transferring it via crypto. It saves you a trip but is no more traceable.

    I do think you live in a dictatorship that outlaws selling sex and drugs, but it is besides the point. The idea is not that it would change regimes, it is that it would save lives. Writing articles critical of the authoritarian government may not be any more effective, but at least you could do so without getting killed.

    (side note: directly hurting the people is about getting jailed and denied care and food and such. If laws remain the same it doesn't matter if shit erodes the public trust or whatever. It is not like gaining more money from taxes means welfare payments are increased.)

    Somehow in your hypothetical scenario there is a terrible government but people still have digital privacy, consistent access to the the internet, and the government doesn't have the internet on lockdown.

    All it takes for a cartel or government to get your cryptocurrency is a wrench, your phone, and beating the shit out of you until you give up your password, to paraphase XCKD.

    The focus on currencies in these situations is ridiculous. The problem is that people are not free to conduct economic transactions for various reasons (crime, oppression, economic failure), not that people don't have a means of hiding economic exchange.

    I mean do you think I'm not for digital privacy or something?

    As you say, the problem is that people are not free to conduct their transactions. I'm saying that a way to be free, digitally, is something we want. It doesn't need to be crypto, crypto probably wouldn't work. Something else might come along. I just reject the idea that it would be good to have all our possible transactions overlooked by the government.

    The problem is that nothing can work to your definition of working.

    Transactions work on one of three basis. Trust, physical transfer, or hard work. Hard work because you have to solve the problem of trust which necessitates multiple third parties to the transaction.

    Trust means youre always beholden to some organization, be it a government, or bank, or credit company. Physical transfer solves the problem of trust because you have cash on and and goods on hand at the transfer. The only risk is robbery and not fraud and the government has largely solved the trust issues of robbery(except in the case of illegal goods transfers) Multiple third parties means it costs money, lots of money, as bitcoin et al do.

    An electronic money that isnt expensive to use doesnt solve the problem of trust implicitly. You must still have a trusted intermediary. And the state still has interest in regulating those intermediaries. So either theyre going to submit to that or theyre going to be sketchy ass places that are likely to steal your money(see basically all the btc exchanges) that you probably shouldnt trust. Or, at the very least, youre still beholden to the whims of that company doing shitty things.

    Your very base case scenario with an “electronic currency” will have pay pal replace pay pal

    If you want to be free to do your legal transactions the dont joke about how youre doing illegal things with your transactions in the transaction log. Or use cash for things you dont want a hard record of. There is going to be a record when you buy those bad dragon christmas lights whether you use ”electronic currency”* or credt. So use cash.

    *there literally has to be because the record is the proof of payment!

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  • TarantioTarantio Registered User regular
    RickRude wrote: »
    Pretty sure this is on topic.

    More information on the investigation of the murder of a beautiful young girl by two known bit coin scammers. If not, sorry, knew the girl and wanted to post somewhere for her memory

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.buzzfeednews.com/amphtml/josephbernstein/tomi-masters-down-the-rabbit-hole-i-go

    Very sorry for your loss, Rick.

    It's an infuriating story.

    "Arguing with anonymous strangers on the Internet is a sucker's game because they almost always turn out to be -- or to be indistinguishable from -- self-righteous sixteen-year-olds possessing infinite amounts of free time."
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  • discriderdiscrider Registered User regular
    Tarantio wrote: »
    RickRude wrote: »
    Pretty sure this is on topic.

    More information on the investigation of the murder of a beautiful young girl by two known bit coin scammers. If not, sorry, knew the girl and wanted to post somewhere for her memory

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.buzzfeednews.com/amphtml/josephbernstein/tomi-masters-down-the-rabbit-hole-i-go

    Very sorry for your loss, Rick.

    It's an infuriating story.

    Damn the shutdown too

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  • SolarSolar Registered User regular
    Sex workers absolutely need access to financial infrastructure, I agree there

    Banks absolutely cannot be giving people access to their infrastructure if they are dealing in illegally acquired funds etc. A bank cannot decide "these illegal funds are okay and these are not" as that is not something they get to do.

    Bitcoin and so on absolutely should be held up to the same standard and are not. This is not a defence of bitcoin. If cryptocurrencies are providing shitty predatory financial services to sex workers the that's another reason to legalise sex work not a tally in cryptocurrencies' pro column

    ElvenshaeGnome-Interruptus
  • bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    Coinage wrote: »
    I can't vouch for this website, but this guy analyzed the Bitcoin transactions to conclude
    It appears that there are no identifiable cold wallet reserves for QuadrigaCX.

    It appears that QuadrigaCX was using deposits from their customers to pay other customers once they requested their withdrawal.

    It does not appear that QuadrigaCX has lost access to their Bitcoin holdings.

    It appears the number of bitcoins in QuadrigaCX’s possession are substantially less than what was reported in Jennifer Robertson’s (wife of allegedly deceased CEO and Owner Gerry Cotten) affidavit, submitted to the Canadian courts on January 31st, 2019.

    At least some of the delays in delivering crypto withdrawals to customers were due to the fact that QuadrigaCX simply did not have the funds on hand at the time. In some cases, QuadrigaCX was forced to wait for enough customer deposits to be made on the exchange before processing crypto withdrawal requests by their customers.

    After completing the analysis, it is the author’s opinion that QuadrigaCX has not been truthful with regards to their inability to access the funds needed to honor customer withdrawal requests. In fact, it is almost impossible to believe that this is the case in lieu of the empirical evidence provided by the blockchain.
    If only there could be some kind of organization that could give some kind of penalty to prevent people from just keeping your money. I wonder what we could call it?

    oh shit, a bitcoin ponzi scheme

    Ladies.
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  • bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    edited February 7
    The takeaway from this current page is: "Don't do illegal shit, and if you do, bake in some % for loss of profit because of government and wire-service fuckmuppetry just like every business does for other loss creating scenarios"

    or just accept cash

    bowen on
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  • HevachHevach Registered User regular
    edited February 7
    bowen wrote: »
    Coinage wrote: »
    I can't vouch for this website, but this guy analyzed the Bitcoin transactions to conclude
    It appears that there are no identifiable cold wallet reserves for QuadrigaCX.

    It appears that QuadrigaCX was using deposits from their customers to pay other customers once they requested their withdrawal.

    It does not appear that QuadrigaCX has lost access to their Bitcoin holdings.

    It appears the number of bitcoins in QuadrigaCX’s possession are substantially less than what was reported in Jennifer Robertson’s (wife of allegedly deceased CEO and Owner Gerry Cotten) affidavit, submitted to the Canadian courts on January 31st, 2019.

    At least some of the delays in delivering crypto withdrawals to customers were due to the fact that QuadrigaCX simply did not have the funds on hand at the time. In some cases, QuadrigaCX was forced to wait for enough customer deposits to be made on the exchange before processing crypto withdrawal requests by their customers.

    After completing the analysis, it is the author’s opinion that QuadrigaCX has not been truthful with regards to their inability to access the funds needed to honor customer withdrawal requests. In fact, it is almost impossible to believe that this is the case in lieu of the empirical evidence provided by the blockchain.
    If only there could be some kind of organization that could give some kind of penalty to prevent people from just keeping your money. I wonder what we could call it?

    oh shit, a bitcoin ponzi scheme

    It's the dog headed hybrid kitten of a ponzi scheme and a wildcat bank.


    https://www.newsbtc.com/2019/02/06/ceo-who-held-150m-in-crypto-died-in-a-region-known-for-having-a-fake-death-mafia/amp/
    This story is going around the crypto blogs, talking about death fraud in India. The area where he died is an area that has not yet implemented any reform attempts, and both locals and foreigners have been known to get death certificates in person by showing their ID and filling out a form.

    Disclaimer: crypto is already full of conspiracy theory peddlers and a lot of people need to be invested in this one to cling to the belief that the whole system isn't broken and bending to the mercy of scammers.

    Hevach on
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  • bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    Everything that has shown up so far as pointed to some really shady shit going down with this company... so I wouldn't exactly be shocked to find out this dude just disappeared with as much money as he could before he ended up in jail for fraud.

    Ladies.
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  • tsmvengytsmvengy Registered User regular
    Crypto will free us from having to deal with corrupt corporate banks!

    Meet the new boss... same as the old boss...

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  • Descendant XDescendant X Hank Facepunch Registered User regular
    RickRude wrote: »
    Pretty sure this is on topic.

    More information on the investigation of the murder of a beautiful young girl by two known bit coin scammers. If not, sorry, knew the girl and wanted to post somewhere for her memory

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.buzzfeednews.com/amphtml/josephbernstein/tomi-masters-down-the-rabbit-hole-i-go

    Jesus Rick, this is a sad and horrifying story. Prison in the Philippines is too good for these two goofballs.

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  • SchrodingerSchrodinger Registered User regular
    Hevach wrote: »
    It's the dog headed hybrid kitten of a ponzi scheme and a wildcat bank.


    https://www.newsbtc.com/2019/02/06/ceo-who-held-150m-in-crypto-died-in-a-region-known-for-having-a-fake-death-mafia/amp/
    This story is going around the crypto blogs, talking about death fraud in India. The area where he died is an area that has not yet implemented any reform attempts, and both locals and foreigners have been known to get death certificates in person by showing their ID and filling out a form.

    Disclaimer: crypto is already full of conspiracy theory peddlers and a lot of people need to be invested in this one to cling to the belief that the whole system isn't broken and bending to the mercy of scammers.

    Apparently India is where you go if you want to fake your death for $100.

    I'm sure there there are more credible places to fake your death, but they don't take bitcoin.

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