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Be Your Own Bank With Bitcoin
“I don’t believe we shall ever have a good money again before we take the thing out of the hands of government, that is, we can’t take it violently out of the hands of government, all we can do is by some sly roundabout way introduce something that they can’t stop.” – F.A. Hayek 1984
Michael Brown | Dec 23, 2020
In the above quote, Hayek is lamenting the loss of gold standard currency in the United States. In 1971 the gold standard was altered to become fiat money by the hand of the Nixon administration.
Funny enough, ever since then, wages have stagnated and productivity has risen. This, at the benefit of a few at the expense of the many. Talk about stacking the odds. For years people all over the world have experienced the economic woes that have come to plague us all since then. But as of 2009, that “sly roundabout way” that Hayek was talking about has become a reality.
Bitcoin, The Great Leveler of the Odds
I am speaking of course about Bitcoin (and by extension, other cryptocurrencies). Never before have we seen in the history of humanity a means of exchange quite like it. The blockchain is slowly but surely, automating away monolithic institutions that have been ubiquitous to many nations for hundreds of years.
But who benefits from holding cryptocurrency then? Definitely not you, according to some financial experts, who have skin in the game of conventional banking and the current state of affairs. They have an interest in keeping you sitting at their poker table. If we are forced to gamble in the Casino of Capital, then we need not sit at this card table in particular. There are other tables with different rules. Ones that are maybe stacked a little better in our favor. What is tricky is that the proverbial “house” does not necessarily want you to see such an opportunity.
Obscuring the Opportunity of Cryptocurrency
Opportunity can be invisible. There are those parties that exist today that would have you believe that opportunity is found in a single institution. One which you have no control over or stake in yourself. These parties also want your money and by extension, your belief in their institution as legitimate. Markets are like Freddy Kruger or Santa Claus. They only exist in-so far as how many people believe it is real.
The USD is worth what it is because a large number of large scale institutions and stake-holding parties around the globe have confidence in it as a means of exchange. This is based on the abstract wants and needs of capital stakeholders, and following that, the large-scale exchanges these stakeholders make all over the world. If it is belief and confidence in an institution that creates value, what makes Bitcoin and crypto so valuable?
For example, if someone handed you a playing card, and said “this is worth $20,000 USD” you probably wouldn’t place much confidence in such a thing. There’s millions of playing cards out there, you can buy a pack yourself for under $10. There’s no belief that the value of the card is that high. However, during economic strife, people have historically resorted to using specially marked playing cards as an “IOU” from an economic authority/institution. (AKA Paper Money). It is not the card that holds value, but the seal or name of the person or institution upon it that does hold value.
Are Banks “As Good as Gold?”
In the modern day, the word of many banks is “as good as gold”. Thus we use it as currency because we can supposedly hold them accountable. Yet it is never done.
Banks have become such a mandatory presence in economics and business that they seem to hold a kind of collective monopoly upon finance. I am not of the opinion that banks do this well, or for any good intent but for the benefit of the key stakeholders.
The customers are increasingly having to resort to reliance on these institutions for many exchanges of goods. Let us look at the recent history of economic recessions, such as the 2008 one and yet again this year in 2020. They both tell us another story rather than the branding these institutions would have you believe. Many people are placing their confidence, livelihoods, and general hopes and dreams into these institutions. Banks prove time and again that there is no length they will not go to for the maintenance of their market dominance.
Banking is Obsolete in the Digital Era
Dear reader, Have you ever been frustrated by your bank? Have you ever questioned why you have so few (if any) options but to use a bank to grow your money, take loans out, and make other major or everyday purchases? The truth is, that you don’t. Nobody truly needs a financial institution, definitely not in the modern day. How many people do you know even carry cash? Bank money is insured, so it’s not like robberies are any serious threat. Furthermore, without the gold standard, who needs a vault full of heavy metals? So what do banks even provide to customers? Investment services? Interest rates?
As far as I can tell, banks are running out of services to provide, especially in a world growing more digital by the day. Yet these institutions would have us collectively believe that they are a critical part to our everyday lives. They are, but only for as long as we believe in Freddy Kruger on Wall Street. Apart from lines of credit, banks really are only providing electronic services that manage money. Now what if I told you, that you can do all of your banking independently?
You can’t exactly do everything yourself, but blockchain technology certainly handles a lot of the heavy lifting. Blockchains track electronic exchanges to prove that yes, they did in fact happen. This all happens on a peer-to-peer bases. Directly from one party to another, without the need of transfers through a bank or any other middleman. Blockchain makes you, directly, into the bank of John and Jane Doe. Congratulations, you now have skin in the game of cryptocurrency.
Adopt the Better Odds
As much as I have ragged on bankers and financiers above, being a banker comes with some level of responsibility. In the modern day, such responsibility, especially with finances, comes with a certain level of anxiety. This challenge is presented to a generation of people that have, generally speaking, experienced a very low level of responsibility. In addition, this challenge of responsibility is presented to seniors in managerial positions with low tech literacy. Whatever the reasons are for apprehension to crypto, overcoming these fears of financial responsibility and/or electronic money is not impossible. This challenge can absolutely be met and overcome. There are more resources than ever to assist anybody at any skill level with comprehending crypto, CryptoVantage being one of them.
So while we’ve been playing a game with stacked odds for decades, we have a new opportunity. Don’t get me wrong, playing the tables at this crypto casino is still gambling. Opting out is not really an option, as virtually everyone needs to be banked. So, if we are forced to play at the greater Capital Casino, why not play the game with better odds?