Bitcoin and Blockchain

Sunday, May 6th, 2018

It is the great presumption of public policy that some people with power, resources, and status can know what is true, and therefore what must be better. This is in contrast to the lowly actors in the marketplace who must deal daily with the problem of not knowing. To navigate life, to find profitable investment opportunities, to discover what it is that society needs now and what can wait, is the great challenge of material life. But the state takes a different route. It declares what is true, attempts to freeze the process of life, and then impose it as a matter of law.

Friday, April 20th, 2018

Dividing the world into “centralized” and “decentralized” obscures important features of the bitcoin protocol. A more sophisticated lexicon would leave scope for “distributed” processes.

Thursday, April 19th, 2018

Venezuela recently launched its own cryptocurrency. If recent history is any indicator, investors should steer clear.

Tuesday, April 17th, 2018

The fact that Anderson’s theory of money seems to fail the Bitcoin test forces us to question our long tradition of issuing new coins that contain precious metals, or banknotes redeemable for some other, already valuable instrument.

Monday, April 16th, 2018

Many people who are bullish on blockchain make grandiose claims that the technology will completely overhaul industries and institutions. But these claims often ignore the complexity of the real world and misunderstand what revolutionary technologies actually do.

Friday, April 13th, 2018

There will be another winter. And another. To get the best sense of the potential here, it’s best to look at the price, not day to day, but on a logarithmic scale. Here is where we can see the potential of the technology. That has a much more meaningful significance than the fickle judgments of seasonal news hounds that make the difference on the daily margin.

Wednesday, March 28th, 2018

By focusing almost exclusively on disruption, blockchain proponents can ignore the important role of adoption by existing players in finance and other industries.

Monday, March 26th, 2018

Seemingly out of nowhere, we have now an entire suite of technology that could conceivably displace and even replace national money, traditional payment options, and even regulated capital markets, and bring us something new and much more wonderful.

Monday, March 19th, 2018

With the stroke of a pen, President Donald Trump may have just accomplished what most observers thought impossible: he’s made the Petro relevant.

Monday, March 19th, 2018

In the ideal world, you invent something wonderful, the world celebrates and starts using it. You get rich. We can dream, can’t we?

Saturday, March 17th, 2018

The contrasting supply and demand mechanisms of Bitcoin and gold mining pose real challenges to the cryptocurrency's future.

Wednesday, March 14th, 2018

Wyoming has a thin population base, astonishing natural beauty, and a wonderful crew of politicians and regulators who believe in independence, innovation, and technological progress. Thanks to some wise activism from knowledgeable people in the space, the legislature just passed a series of bills that will make Wyoming something of a safe space for crypto.

Wednesday, March 7th, 2018

In an article in The Guardian this week, economists Nouriel Roubini and Preston Byrne call blockchain “one of the most overhyped technologies ever.” In an earlier piece, Roubini predicts that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies collectively are “the mother of all bubbles.”

Monday, March 5th, 2018

By having users volunteer the CPU power to mining, websites could find that they will earn more from mining than from subscriptions or ads. This could change everything. 

Thursday, March 1st, 2018

The crypto community often forgets that there are costs to decentralization in addition to benefits.

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

There are two important differences between modern cryptocurrencies and the competitive monies F.A. Hayek envisioned.

Tuesday, February 27th, 2018

The blockchain represents a source of money creation that, during a crisis, might limit the extent to which asset prices fall.

Monday, February 26th, 2018

It is absolutely essential to understand the distributed model even to have a first-level conception of what cryptocurrency really is. It is not a proprietary product. It is not a company. It is not even a brand. It is a technology. It is a technology that, by design and structure, doesn’t have an owner – or, more accurately, it is owned by anyone and everyone. It is a distributed ledger. The purpose of it is to carefully delineate ownership claims and provide a chronological and immunity audit trail of changes in ownership rights. Bitcoin is a token that provides evidence of authority and access to make changes in the ledger, and thereby absorbs and reflects the value of the services provided by the ledger itself.

Monday, February 26th, 2018

Many people disagree with government regulation of cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings (ICOs), but one could do a lot worse than Switzerland’s financial regulator, Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA).

Sunday, February 25th, 2018

Do we need more government oversight for bitcoin? In a recent point-counterpoint debate, AEI's Paul Kupiec and AIER's William Luther square off.