The Bitcoin Saga


#681

So you're attacking all anarchists for anarcho-capitalists, I see. Never mind it's not the same thing as Libertarian either. Or the capitalists getting into bitcoin in a big way.
No, you need to be club-man, as ever.


#682

It's true, anarchists are unbeleivably stupid. I don't think I've ever heard a cogent, well thought out argument about the benefits of anarchy. it's always some unicorn and fairy dust bullshit about how a barter economy and unregulated local currencies would somehow be better. Mostly though they are just failing at life, and react by descending into fantasyland.


#683

So true. Every brand of anarch philosophy is either moronic or self-deluded. I include the "or" because there have been a few intelligent, readable anarch thinkers who are nonetheless living in deluded unicorn fairy dust land. Human nature is such that anarchy is insanity. It will always be abused, and severely. Bitcoin is just the latest in a very long list of examples.

As an aside, that's why I don't support the US Libertarian party. They require their members to sign "The Pledge", which states "I hereby certify that I do not believe in or advocate the initiation of force as a means of achieving political or social goals." I know someone who joined, signed, and then asked questions, not the most logical approach. "What about police? They initiate force," he said. He was told police should be abolished. "The courts?" Same. "Regulations of any kind?" Ditto. "Basically, you're telling me you want to tear down the government completely and have an anarchy, right?" "Now you're getting it!" was the response. He quit within an hour of joining. The Libertarians are ridiculously extreme. As a fiscal conservative/social liberal, I have sympathy for a lot of their positions, but they go way too far.


#684

Keep making it up, conflating very different philosophies - spewing hate at others better directed at yourself for seeing everything outside your own views as the same.
American (vulgar) libertarians are not anarchists.

Soapyfrog - Funny, local currencies have in practice been highly, highly successful, and are of course regulated. But hey, don't stop the capitalist propagit. Germany uses a LOT of local currencies/LETS schemes (over 150), and in the UK the Bristol Pound's success with it's backing from the local credit unit and their provision of online and electronic payment systems gives a roadmap for future local currencies.

I'm sure you'd say the same about Minicome, never mind the 2010 studies on that, etc. - as you yell abuse at something most anarchists condemn (local currencies are entirely unlike bitcoin, of course, they are not a rich-make-cash scheme...)

See, from a 30 second search;

10.1080/02690940903026852
10.14441/eier.4.267
10.1177/1524839909353022


#685

That's... more than I was expecting. I guess I've never paid close attention to the US Libertarian party, even when I considered myself a libertarian.


#686

Yeah, most of their members are full on anarchs, of the anarcho-capitalist subtype. Ayn Rand, a minarchist and one of their supposed heroes, had this to say about them:

Capitalism is the one system that requires absolute objective law, yet they want to combine capitalism and anarchism. That is worse than anything the New Left has proposed. It’s a mockery of philosophy and ideology...I’d rather vote for Bob Hope, the Marx Brothers, or Jerry Lewis [than a candidate from the Libertarian Party].

All anarchs are kooks though. I don't care if they're anarcho-syndicalists, anarcho-capitalists, anarcho-communists, or whatever. They're convinced that without government, the whole world will happily abide by their unabusable lawless pattern, which is mind bogglingly dumb.


#687

Nope, that's another hate-filled spew from you. You're confusing anarchists with (again) vulgar libertarians. This is a recurrent theme, what's mind bogglingly dumb is your stereotyping and political correctness therein.

I'm an anarchist (specifically, a Mutualist in the British tradition). Do I think we need a government? Yes. Because how else can you make corporations respect a free market (tip - you cannot, except in the VERY long term). I want a government for other essential frameworks too.
The Government needs to get out moral decision making on people's behalf. But that's not the same as having no government.


#688

If I understand what you mean by "moral decision making", I say: au contraire. People rarely behave morally for the common good, except when it is in their interest to do so. But we cannot be left as prey to the vagaries and changes of heart of the people. Governments need to have the possibility of taking unpopular decisions without being subjected to the will of Money and Opinion. We need a government whose Duty is to govern as it believes it should govern to pursue the public good, and for this we need a government that can maintain Order, and keep in check the creeping power of Money and Opinion.


#689

Statist rot.

"Money and Opinion" are in the hands of the rich, who are increasingly influencing elected government to impose their paternalistic morality and economic rules on the 99%.
You're fighting against parring back that control. Neither do governments have business regulating marriage (just civil partnerships), etc.


#690

As usual, I see Starlight replied to a couple posts I made. I want to point out that I have him on ignore, something he knows full well. He loves following up my posts with refutations that he knows I'll never respond to, thinking that he scores points that way.


#691

I am not bound by your decisions. You're posting whining, demanding that people believe that you magically mind control me into playing your silly game epeen of point-scoring. I reply to you like anyone else, that's all there is to it!

In this case, you're spewing hate based on politically correct myths, capitalist.


#692

The direct result of anarchy (in any form or philosophy) would be tyranny of the rich and powerful over the poor and powerless, and an annililation of the middle class. Then we'd have to relive the last thousand years of history trying to set things right again. Fun!


#693

Yeah, this. Anarchy, like many other extremist ideologies, only works if you can assume a spherical human of uniform density (physics joke!).


#694

Countless political philosophies have made the mistake of assuming human nature is perfectible and that everyone will adopt an attitude of brotherhood if only the right system is adopted. It's hilarious how much time, effort, emotion, and ink has been wasted by that assumption.


#695

Maybe Somalia gets overused as an example, but that's clearly what you get. At best anarchy immediately gives way to something else, like techno-feudalism, brought about because the rich and powerful can impose force, and in the absence of government there's no way to put curbs on the amount of force they can impose. Most of the cyberpunk dystopias are essentially speculations on what the world would look like if corporations could do whatever they liked.


#696

I can't mine for bitcoins from the ethical aspect of energy usage/global warming, for example as mentioned in this article:

'Want to make money off Bitcoin mining? Hint: Don't mine':

http://theweek.com/article/index/242753/want-to-make-money-off-bitcoin-mining-hint-dont-mine

From an economic standpoint, that division of labor is partly why Bitcoin mining can get to be so expensive. According to Bloomberg, which uses data from a tracking site called Blockchain.info, 24 hours of mining from around the world consumes in the ballpark of $150,000 in electricity. That works out to 15 cents per kilowatt hour — a little higher than the U.S. average, and enough to power roughly 31,000 U.S. homes.

At least for now, though, the Bitcoin mining industry remains profitable business for the truly dedicated. (A recent 24-hour period of work yielded Bitcoin miners around the globe $681,000 profit.) But as more Bitcoins are discovered, the odds of finding new ones will exponentially diminish. That's why, even though about half of the global Bitcoin yield has already been pocketed, the last few probably won't be unlocked until 2030.

As TechCrunch cautions, "While you could simply set a machine aside and have it run the algorithms endlessly, the energy cost and equipment deprecation will eventually cost more than the actual Bitcoins are worth." That's why, "as with most gold rushes throughout history, it's those who are supplying the miners that are finding the real riches."


#697

The ethical value of mining bitcoins depends on what you obtain in exchange for them.

Suppose you used $5 worth of energy to earn $20 of Bitcoin, which you then spent on $20 in carbon offset credits, or $20 worth of mosquito netting in Africa, or $20 worth of groceries for a local food bank. By most estimates, that's more ethical than using $0.0002 worth of energy to type a forum post.


#698

If you were spending 150k to mine 680k, that's plenty of profit to offset your carbon footprint, with buckets left over for donation to green initiatives every single day. I think you're looking at this the wrong way, Zak... ;)

Edit - Dammit, ninja'd and so much better than mine!


#699

You're lumping together dozens of ideologies and saying that they're all the same. That they're all for throwing out all government. The reality is that we're heading rapidly for corporatism today in much of the world, under capitalism - the dystopia is on it's way nicely. The alternative model, as we can see in the Nordic countries, of a partnership between people and government, where it supports people and not the interests of corporations...

(Yes, they're still too interested in moral paternalism in the Nordics, but there's a reason Mutualism and many other forms of anarchy are explicitly gradualist, unlike revolutionary communists...)

magnet - It's still a rich-get-richer thing, where energy's been wasted for no useful goal. It's inherently inflationary to the currencies it's being transferred into.


#700

That's not true. Bitcoin miners earn Bitcoins as a reward for helping to process Bitcoin transactions. In a very convoluted way, those CPUs are working towards the same goal as the Visa and Mastercard CPUs that process conventional credit card transactions.