[This article originally appeared in The Daily Reckoning on March 4, 2013]
Well, Fellow Reckoner, it’s been something of a sad week for proponents of Bitcoin…
Would-be buyers of the fringy cyber experiment have had to watch as the price of their beloved currency shot to within (as of this writing) a few cents shy of $35 per coin. No buyer wants to see that kind of action…unless they are also an “already boughter.”
In other words, current owners and maybe-one-day sellers are sitting fairly pretty. Since the beginning of January, the bitcoin price in dollars has rocketed roughly 270%. Not a bad move for those who spent the past couple of months “hoarding.” (The correct word, let it be on the record, is “saving.”) And not bad for a currency that suffers the ignominy of existing without the indispensable aid of a central bank.
To be sure, true believers will still be scooping the controversial coins up for what they surely see today as a bargain. As we remarked in this space earlier in the week…
“Speculation about the potential value of a single coin varies widely [in the bitcoin community]. We’ve heard wide-eyed forecasts running into the many thousands of dollars. That’s why enthusiasts are scrambling to build their stash now, before the price rockets….Get rich or die mining, as they say.”
Of course, as we all know, the Bitcoin crowd is really just a of cabal of dissidents, brimming with lunatics who would trust the free market to its own devices, without the tireless vigilance and service of the government. (“But who would build the…?”) What might happen if these malcontents were to gain traction, with their silly little ideas about “liberty this” and “freedom that”?
Imagine for a moment, Fellow Reckoner, a scenario in which the value of a currency was determined by the people who actually use it, and not by some all-knowing, all-powerful demigod on a Federal Reserve board. What might happen to central banks as they exist today?
Imagine that fees and charges more or less disappeared, so that opening a digital wallet was as easy as setting up an email account, and sending and receiving payments as simple as firing off a text message. What might happen to banks and financial institutions that today shower their loyal customers in myriad penalties and fees?
Imagine that bureaucratic red tape vanished into the ether, so that anyone with a sound idea and the gumption to see it through could enter the self-regulating ecosystem of service providers without need of state license or permit? What would happen to that friendly monopoly of mega banks steadfastly committed to fragilizing the global financial system…not to mention the chubby-mitted congress of politicians diligently taking bribes from them on our behalf?
Imagine that transactions of the currency were virtually anonymous, so that individuals could conduct their daily business, buying and selling goods and services, in cryptographically-ensured security and privacy. What might happen to the lifeblood of The State when it is unable to easily invade the privacy of its citizens in order to track and steal their money for them?
No! Let us imagine no more! We must put a stop to this. We must rage against these margin-traipsing ne’er-do-wells. And we must sully the name of their wretched cyber currency initiative.
And finally, we must hope the bitcoin price falls back through the floor…so a better buyer again we can be.
Joel BowmanThe Daily Reckoning
Ed. Note: For more on the “fringy cyber-crypto currency” as Joel calls it, sign up for the Laissez Faire Today email edition. It provides readers with regular updates on the likely future of Bitcoin and how you can take full advantage of it. Sign up for FREE, right here.
Understanding Bitcoin requires that we understand the limits of our ability to imagine the future that the market can create for us. That is exactly what is happening with Bitcoin right now. As I type, the price is exploding, the main exchanges are overloaded, and people around the world can’t convert from government currency into […]
Joel Bowman is a contributor to The Daily Reckoning. After completing his degree in media communications and journalism in his home country of Australia, Joel moved to Baltimore to join the Agora Financial team. His keen interest in travel and macroeconomics first took him to New York where he regularly reported from Wall Street, and he now writes from and lives all over the world.
I wonder how often you write about things you clearly did zero research on and have no grasp of. I could summarize this whole article in one sentence: “I don’t know what’s going on and I don’t like it!”
I encourage you to find a new line of work.
It reads to me like satire. Is Joel in favor or against the idea of BitCoin and Free Markets? I was thinking the former.
Pretty sure it was written in sarcasm.
I read it as very good satire. Its almost like hes half-sarcastically half wittingly suggesting another drop in the bitcoin at the end of the article, to once again rebuild & strengthen its legitimacy even more so(with less of a drug pushing base? which is becoming less prevalent), like it did in 2011 when people lost confidence in the coin and it plummeted and then software designers and what not seemed to come out with much more secure wallet systems, exchange systems, It all seems very developmental still, but the bitcoin ATM is what’s really exciting me right now. obviously that would/will take time to adopt/harness a reliable community around it who dispense necessary goods, but its so simple and works flawlessly, While rendering central banking obsolete at the same time. Wow!
Dammit. That’s what I get for speed reading
So everyone should boycott bitcoins because you didn’t buy any before the bubble?
Thought I would include a suggestion, at the end of any article written in a satirical vein, could you indicate the intent of the article (i.e. Above was a satire) just for those that don’t get it
Love your angle of attack. I was looking for a reason not to be a cheerleader for Bitcoin, and I’m glad you didn’t give me one. Thanks for the reassurance!
Buy LiteCoin – it’s where bitcoin was 2 years ago – nice and cheap
I totally agree with Joel. Why should anybody try to promote something as stupid as bitcoin, backed by nothing and nobody, when we have financial experts both at the Fed and in government to lead us.
Or you could just buy some Litecoin which is priced where Bitcoin was in 2010.
ignorance truely is bliss. troglodytes. lol!!
Seems Joel is comfortable with who runs the monetary systems. Bitcoin is for the Gentials of the world and for all others who have had enough with the corruption of the IMF,Bilderebergs, Rothchilds, and the Rockefellers of the world.
“financial experts” is an oxymoron.
Fool me once – shame on you.
Fool me twice – shame on me.
It looks to me like some smart scam artists are banking on the narrowness of “experts”, and their acolytes, education. It’s the new South Sea Island company. #southseabubble
While the technical details of Bitcoin may intimidate the novice, they shouldn’t keep him from getting in on a digital currency revolution that -- while taking different forms -- isn’t going away. How do you get the simplest, easiest-to-act-on tips about how to invest, safeguard and grow your digital wealth? Dominic Frisby has more…
The duality is stark. In one hand, we have an energy renaissance underway, in the other, a virus is threatening to wreak havoc on the markets and, potentially, your life. Nothing we’re currently doing to fight the Ebola virus will work in 2014, say the researchers. Nothing we’re currently doing will beat it in 2015, either. We need a new game-plan. Read on…
Lose your shirt in 3D printing stocks this year? Don’t kick yourself. You’re not alone. (Okay, kick yourself a little if it’ll make you feel better.) You need to make sure you don’t lose your 3D-printed shirt in the next tech craze. Because there will be a next time. Look, it’s really not your fault if you got taken for a ride on 3D stocks. Greg Guenthner has more...
Our friend Richard Duncan believes the U.S. economy requires credit growth to survive. Here, you’ll see what he thinks will happen if the U.S. doesn’t continue expanding credit. You’ll also find exclusive footage we shot in the Daily Reckoning’s studio explaining how the U.S. could lose it’s global dominance… and how programs like Social Security or Medicare could go bust...
The hum of the printing presses and the steady drip of cheap credit over the past five years made it easy to believe the U.S. economy was in a true recovery. But what happens when the excess liquidity begins to dry up?