Gold collapsing. Bitcoin UP.

Zangelbert Bingledack

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Aug 29, 2015
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There is no reason to compromise when you can just fork. Forking is better than switching ledgers because switching ledgers as a way to switch dev teams invalidates the whole cryptocurrency concept. There can be no sound money if the people controlling a repo must remain impeccable and incorruptible during a total of a billion-percent price increase (and beyond). I wouldn't trust Gavin, Satoshi, or even any of us with that task. There was never going to be any solution besides many competing forks. I don't know why anyone ever thought otherwise. It's open source after all. That's part of the whole selling point: no one controls it. If crypto can't fork, crypto is done.
 

Peter R

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Aug 28, 2015
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Great posts @Inca regarding governments' inability to exit ZIRP/NIRP. Meaningful interest rate tightening might topple that critical domino, triggering a cascade of defaults and a collapse of the global financial system (as was feared in 2008). So instead of returning to normalcy, easy money drives asset prices to evermore ridiculous heights, forcing people (especially younger adults) to take on equally-ridiculous debt levels in order to own a home, for example.

This reminds me of the discussions we used to have in this thread before the controversy with Blockstream and the block size limit. Like @cypherdoc always says, sound money is the most interesting (and potentially world-changing) application of blockchain technology. The benefits to humankind of better money dwarf the benefits of sidechains, segwit or smart contracts.

David Graeber stresses in Debt: The First 5000 Years that for most of history there have been "jubilees" every generation or so to wipe the slate clean and recover from the distortions of high levels of debt. In the last chapter of the book, he actually proposes that a jubilee is exactly what the world needs today:

"...the principle has been exposed as a flagrant lie. As it turns out, we don't "all" have to pay our debts. Only some of us do. Nothing would be more important than to wipe the slate clean for everyone, mark a break with our accustomed morality, and start again."

I don't believe 'the powers that be' would ever explicitly agree to such a jubilee, but would not a shift of value into the Bitcoin Ledger accomplish the same result? All debts denominated in fiat currency would effectively be wiped out (not in nominal terms, but in real terms due to the loss of purchasing power of fiat). And if this were the case, would it not be in the best interest of most people on Earth--and especially the young and productive--to attempt to push for this shift of value into Bitcoin's ledger?

I quite like the last paragraph of Graeber's book, which I include below:

"What is a debt, anyway? A debt is just the perversion of a promise. It is a promise corrupted by both math and violence. If freedom (real freedom) is the ability to make friends, then it is also, necessarily, the ability to make real promises. What sorts of promises might genuinely free men and women make to one another? At this point we can't even say. It's more a question of how we can get to a place that will allow us to find out. And the first step in that journey, in turn, is to accept that in the largest scheme of things, just as no one has the right to tell us our true value, no one has the right to tell us what we truly owe."
 
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albin

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Nov 8, 2015
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Am I wrong thinking maybe all this voting paranoia in /r/bitcoin is just paranoia?

The votes I'm getting in /r/btc make perfect sense, if I bring some relevant info that improves the thread I get a fair amount of upvotes, if I say something not totally useless but not particularly compelling it might be a couple or just stay at 1. I only ever notice a weird amount of downvotes on threads where known /r/bitcoin Corestream shills are participating, and it's only on /r/bitcoin that I get single downvotes off of totally innocuous factual comments.

Obviously I'm not aware of the full picture, but honestly the only voting irregularities I'm seeing that don't make sense from a place of good faith are only those places where the Core trolls are.

The real notable asymmetry I see is a pretty predictable consequnce of human behavior as far as team reinforcement and identification:

On /r/btc if you're on the right side but pretty obnoxious it tends to slide. If you're small block and obnoxious you get buried, but if you're small block and not obnoxious you can do ok and stimulate good conversation. <-- emergent consensus

On /r/bitcoin if you're small block you can say whatever you want whenever. If you're large block you have to be Mother Theresa or you get banned. <-- command and control
 
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Dusty

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Mar 14, 2016
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If someone wants to have a break for a cloudy sunday I'll leave this talk here.
It's about the enormous change that is happening all over the world (and especially not in the US).
The only thing that the guy does not talk about is Bitcoin (hence involuntarily making a point to his very talk), but it's very interesting anyway.
 
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cypherdoc

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Peter R

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Aug 28, 2015
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From that Konrad Graf article:

I was thinking more about this idea of the miners as a "cartel." So it does seem as though Bitcoin's nature makes it at least relatively easy for miners to impose an "industrywide output ceiling" on on-chain transaction-inclusion services (i.e., blockspace). Unlike the situation with a traditional cartel, you can impose this ceiling without the willing participation of all or substantially all firms in the market (instead you just need a simple majority of the hashpower), and, because of the public nature of the blockchain, you don't have to worry about secret cheating.

But even if we think that's what's going on, i.e., that the miners have formed a cartel, they don't appear to be acting like one -- or at least, not a very bright one. You don't form a cartel and then just arbitrarily restrict industry output. I mean, OPEC doesn't go, "hey guys, let's only sell one barrel of oil this year. If we do that, that one barrel will fetch a fortune!" You restrict quantity to the point that maximizes profits (i.e., the point at which marginal cost equals marginal revenue).



Somehow I doubt that 1-MB is the magic number that allows miners to enjoy maximum monopoly profits from transaction fees. In fact, most of us seem to think that the real motivation behind the ceiling is the desire to maximize the profits associated with products that will compete with the miners' products (i.e., off-chain transaction services). So the current situation seems kind of like OPEC having been convinced to cap their oil production at an absurdly-low and profit-sacrificing level ... by a company that sells electric cars.
It never hit me until this post that (like you said) block space is different from other commodities with respect to cartel pricing because the cartel can identify cheaters and prevent them from selling the commodity (i.e., by orphaning the cheater's block). This works so long as the cartel controls the majority of the hash power (like you said).

I see this as another good argument against having a protocol-enforced block size limit at all. In the case of perfect competition, a transaction fee market exists due to the non-zero cost to supply block space. In the case of cartel pricing, a (higher-priced) transaction fee market exists due to the cartel members' desire to maximize their profits. Neither case seems to result in this runaway "tragedy of the commons" scenario sometimes feared.



It is also probably reasonable to say that the actual block size will lie somewhere between Q_max and Q* on these charts, depending on the actual level of mining centralization. Higher levels of mining centralization shift us towards the "cooperative cartel" pricing (smaller blocks) and lower levels of mining centralization towards the "perfect competition" pricing (larger blocks).

This also reveals another contradiction in Blockstream/Core's logic. They want smaller blocks for "decentralization" but the way to achieve smaller blocks [1] is with higher levels of centralization (i.e., a cooperative cartel), as these charts illustrate.

[1] Achieve small blocks against the will of the economic majority. If the economic majority wants smaller blocks, then they nodes enforcing a block size limit makes sense to help achieve this.
 
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Richy_T

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Dec 27, 2015
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It's about time we drew a line in the sand and demanded a solid definition of what "decentralization" means (or, likely, several qualified definitions). It seems to me that core is taking advantage of this ill-defined term remaining ill-defined.

I mean, Bitcoin already starts out somewhat centralized simply due to the fact that it is used by early adopters only, currently. If we increase the user base and also increase the number of nodes but not by the same proportion, is that more or less decentralized? Or maybe the question is too ambiguous to have meaning.

Not having this locked down makes it all too easy to move the goalposts.
 
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lunar

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Aug 28, 2015
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@cypherdoc comment deleted.

archived here
Is there a way to get past the paywall without installing their app?
https://r.go1dfish.me/r/btc/comments/4jd5ec/_/d35ugra

Conclusion from the referenced article

What of the Bitcoin community? For all of their pretensions of computer power/economics-based decision-making ala the internet, the Bitcoin community is not the free-wheeling fun-loving band it makes itself out to be. Bitcoin-land has a management problem of its own. There is indeed a hierarchy of Bitcoin/blockchain management, albeit informal. And this management has disputes. A very important current dispute is whether and how the blockchain will grow. This is no small matter. Because if Bitcoin will matter a year from now, it needs to grow like Topsy, and now.

Who will win the battle for the One Big Global Distributed Ledger? Too soon to call, but the stakes are enormous.
Links quite well into Rodger Ver's blog on 'dinner with adam back'

https://forum.bitcoin.com/bitcoin-discussion/my-dinner-with-adam-back-t7823.html

I see four possible scenarios, and all of them lead me to believe that fast, on chain scaling is the smart thing to do today.
  1. If we successfully scale Bitcoin quickly enough, and it doesn't become centralized and controlled, we have won!
  2. If we scale Bitcoin quickly, but it becomes centralized and controlled, all the people who care, will switch to the new freedom-coin.
  3. If we scale Bitcoin too slowly, and it is overtaken by government-control-coin, we are in the exact same situation as the end result in example #2.
  4. We scale Bitcoin slowly, but somehow manage not to be overtaken by government-control-coin, and a decentralized and free Bitcoin becomes the bedrock for the world's financial system, we have won!

When I got involved in Bitcoin, there were no other established businesses of any notable size involved, and there was not a single person on the planet investing capital in any significant amount into bitcoin.
I poured into the ecosystem a huge amount of savings that I had amassed before I had even heard of Bitcoin, and I've poured in millions of dollars since. I've spent nearly every waking moment for the last six plus years working on this, and all of this was due to the original vision that Satoshi laid out. Today that vision is being morphed into something that I didn't sign up for, or agree with when I got started six years ago.
 
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Zarathustra

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Aug 28, 2015
1,439
3,797
Great posts @Inca

David Graeber ..
"...the principle has been exposed as a flagrant lie. As it turns out, we don't "all" have to pay our debts. Only some of us do. Nothing would be more important than to wipe the slate clean for everyone, mark a break with our accustomed morality, and start again."

I don't believe 'the powers that be' would ever explicitly agree to such a jubilee, ...
Nor would the public, since debt is money and therefore the asset of the public at the same time.
Who would agree to such a jubilee when all that debt (60 trillions in the US alone) represents pensions, bank accounts etc.? If you reduce the debt by 90 percent, you'll reduce the economy at a similar rate.
 
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Inca

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Aug 28, 2015
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This reminds me of the discussions we used to have in this thread before the controversy with Blockstream and the block size limit. Like @cypherdoc always says, sound money is the most interesting (and potentially world-changing) application of blockchain technology. The benefits to humankind of better money dwarf the benefits of sidechains, segwit or smart contracts.
Yes I have written before that the 'better money' aspect trumps decentralisation in the importance stakes for bitcoin. IMO we should be scaling bitcoin on chain as far as technically possible and watch decentralisation as we go - getting the next 50 million people into bitcoin (sound money) is far more important than the number of nodes.

I have come to the cynical conclusion that Gregory Maxwell is only interested in his investment and income from Blockstream. For Blockstream to have a chance to claw middleman fees to investors from bitcoin layer 2.0 applications it must achieve two things first - one alter the codebase to allow side chains and lightning to be bolted on, two, raise fees across the base network to give faster non-bitcoin abstract layers above bitcoin economic viability and advantage.

This makes sense if you consider that they failed to come to any compromise whatsoever over maximum blocksize increases even though that is the obvious and simplest route forward.

I believe that is why they have persisted with their roadmap against the wishes of the entire community and the other companies in the space IMO (segwit etc first, hard fork (possibly) later). There is no other rational explanation for their highly destructive behaviour, nor for the attacks and defaming of people who could pose a threat to their dominance such as Satoshi or Gavin. And that isn't even mentioning the agreement with the outrageous censorship which continues to this day by Michael Marquardt.

If it turns out they have agreed a dishonest alliance with the few Chinese miners holding a majority of hash power to prevent entities like 21 from attempts to disperse hashing power in a decentralised fashion then a revolt will need to take place to break Core up.
 

cypherdoc

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Aug 26, 2015
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@cypherdoc comment deleted.

archived here


https://r.go1dfish.me/r/btc/comments/4jd5ec/_/d35ugra

Conclusion from the referenced article



Links quite well into Rodger Ver's blog on 'dinner with adam back'

https://forum.bitcoin.com/bitcoin-discussion/my-dinner-with-adam-back-t7823.html

I see four possible scenarios, and all of them lead me to believe that fast, on chain scaling is the smart thing to do today.
  1. If we successfully scale Bitcoin quickly enough, and it doesn't become centralized and controlled, we have won!
  2. If we scale Bitcoin quickly, but it becomes centralized and controlled, all the people who care, will switch to the new freedom-coin.
  3. If we scale Bitcoin too slowly, and it is overtaken by government-control-coin, we are in the exact same situation as the end result in example #2.
  4. We scale Bitcoin slowly, but somehow manage not to be overtaken by government-control-coin, and a decentralized and free Bitcoin becomes the bedrock for the world's financial system, we have won!
Your link didn't work for me
 

cypherdoc

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Aug 26, 2015
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pretty decent Tweet thread going here. of course, nothing compared to what we have drilled down to here a thousand times already with much more depth and insight. never the less, i liked this one particularly from Ben Davenport. in fact, i'd restate it this way: "lose your private key, lose your house?":

[doublepost=1463327478][/doublepost]Great Job Core Dev (Blockstream clowns)!:

 

Peter R

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Aug 28, 2015
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Nor would the public, since debt is money and therefore the asset of the public at the same time.
From a simplistic perspective, we could assume that everyone with total fiat debts exceeding total fiat assets to be in favour of the jubilee:

total fiat owed by you > total cash on hand + total fiat owed to you (1)​

In a city like Vancouver where I'm from, I bet 80%+ of people with a mortgage are in this case. Ignoring the second-order effects on the economy for now, why would these people not be in favour of a jubilee? I believe Eq. (1) is true for for much of the Western world too.
Who would agree to such a jubilee when all that debt (60 trillions in the US alone) represents pensions, bank accounts etc.? If you reduce the debt by 90 percent, you'll reduce the economy at a similar rate.
Remember, we'd only be wiping the fiat ledgers. The productive assets--and claims on those productive assets such as stocks--would still be intact. So I don't believe that such a jubilee would necessarily destroy the economy. If the jubilee occurred in 2008, then yeah, there would have been no monetary system to adopt that could facilitate global trade (gold would be useless). But is 2018--or 2030--with a system like Bitcoin 'waiting in the wings', an abandonment of the fiat ledgers in favour of a blockchain-based money could actually be...I was going to write "anticlimactic" but I'll say "might not be Armageddon" instead.
 
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cypherdoc

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looking good:

 
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Inca

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@Peter R : jubilees collapse the credit money supply and so will never be sanctioned.

More likely is giving every citizen 100,000 USD.
 
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cypherdoc

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Peter R

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Aug 28, 2015
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@Inca: Yes, I agree. I am talking about an "effective jubilee" that occurs as a result of people losing faith in fiat and choosing to value the Bitcoin ledger instead. Things like "giving every citizen 100,000 USD" would help achieve it, as you pointed out.
 

cypherdoc

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Aug 26, 2015
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looks like Sell in May and Go Away is spreading globally:

Scenes From The Venezuela Apocalypse: "Countless Wounded" After 5,000 Loot Supermarket Looking For Food

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-05-13/scenes-venezuela-apocalypse-countless-wounded-after-5000-loot-supermarket-looking-fo


[doublepost=1463334487][/doublepost]wow, Core troll /u/belcher spinning wildy off the rails as a result of ASIC innovation. what a bunch of hypocrites:

[doublepost=1463334728,1463334098][/doublepost]r/bitcoin is running around with it's hair on fire yet the Bitcoin price keeps going up :)