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Bank Runs Like These Are The Reason Bitcoin Exists

We may be heading into another financial crisis, government bailouts for reckless banks included. Bitcoin exists to fix this.



We may be heading into another financial crisis, government bailouts for reckless banks included. Bitcoin exists to fix this.

This is an opinion editorial by Julian Liniger, the co-founder and CEO of Relai, a bitcoin-only investment app.

‘On The Brink Of Second Bailout For Banks’

At its core, Bitcoin is a transaction database. Every 10 minutes, a new collection of such transactions, called a block, is queued up on Bitcoin, immutable for all eternity. Satoshi Nakamoto, the mysterious mastermind behind the first and most popular cryptocurrency, created that first transaction block themself. But Bitcoin is also a political project — at least, the idea behind it was and always will be political. Nakamoto inserted a message into the code that still forms the start of the decentralized Bitcoin database: “The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks.”

This political message is as relevant these days as it was in early 2009 when a global financial crisis seethed anger and enraged people worldwide. The banks whose recklessness caused this crisis were not punished, but rewarded with taxpayer money. Governments have claimed since then to have learned their lesson. Janet Yellen, the U.S. secretary of the treasury, famously proclaimed in 2017 that she expects that there will be no new financial crisis “in our lifetimes.” Now, guess what: She was wrong.

Silicon Valley Bank Is Just The Tip Of The Iceberg

The second-largest bank failure in U.S. history is now in full swing. After Silvergate Bank, which specialized in financing crypto startups such as the imploded FTX exchange, went belly up, the regional Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) has now been hit too. In the course of the zero-interest-rate policy and ever-higher tech startup valuations, the bank had developed from a David into a Goliath — at least in terms of the sums that were transferred and bunkered there.

Unlike in 2008, however, these banks did not speculate on the unhinged U.S. mortgage market but just adapted to the day-to-day insanity of the financial market. In other words: In the zero-interest-rate environment, they didn't really know where to go with the vast amounts of fresh money. So, they bought conservative, long-dated government bonds to earn at least a little return. The only problem with this is that the U.S. Federal Reserve has now pushed the federal funds rate up to 4.57%, the highest since October 2007.

Previously-purchased bonds, which still had low interest rates, suddenly became the worst-possible investment. When startups that had previously received exorbitant investor cash infusions in the zero-interest environment to stay afloat with even modest business models began withdrawing their money, chaos was inevitable. Of course, SVB isn't innocent either because if you specialize in a single customer segment, you're easily vulnerable in a bank run. And it is also becoming increasingly clear that the bank's general risk management left much to be desired.

The Revenge Of Cheap Money

Without wishing to absolve banks like SVB of their guilt, it must be stated: The fact that it could come to this point at all is a consequence of a decade of unaccountability. Although there was a lot of talk after the last financial crisis about stricter controls and the shortcomings of “fractional reserve banking,” in which banks only actually own a small percentage of customer funds, there is not much left after years of zero-interest-rate policies.

The absurdly loose monetary policy of the Federal Reserve (and also of the European Central Bank), which was given a turbo boost in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, is now taking its revenge. “Higher, faster, further” was the motto of the financial and real estate markets. The relenting is now coming too late and too abruptly. Emblematic of the excesses of recent years is not only crazy startup valuations but also thousands of hyped “altcoins,” absurdly-highly-valued NFTs and even increasingly-popular alternative forms of investment, such as luxury watches or even rare Lego sets. We were all forced to speculate. “Cash is trash” was the motto.

'Crypto' Is A Symptom, Not A Solution

With all of the chaos in the financial and banking sectors, it must be noted that the crypto industry is not an alternative, but rather an even more fragile variant of the established financial system. It is not surprising that FTX, Luna and other crypto projects were the first to implode due to bank runs and loss of confidence.

Instead of the independence invoked by Nakamoto, many of the most-hyped crypto projects only exist because venture capitalists (VCs) didn't know where to put their money in recent years, because “blockchain” and “decentralized finance” were nice buzzwords during the COVID-19 pandemic, and — this is an important factor — because there was unlimited money to be made from the newly-created tokens of crypto projects. Creating money out of nothing was a reality. This was lucrative for a few insiders and VCs, but fatal for retail investors and crypto novices.

Incidentally, Silvergate Bank also went under in the wake of SVB, another bank that provided bank accounts to U.S. crypto companies. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, led by Gary Gensler, seems to be serious when it says that every cryptocurrency except bitcoin is a possibly-illegal security.

'Confidence Scheme' Or Absolute Transparency?

And now? Inflation rates of around 10% are not uncommon in Europe, and in the U.S., too, confidence in the words and deeds of the central bank has long been shaken. The wounds of the financial crisis have not healed — on the contrary. The stock market may be facing a sell off; “crypto” is a risky proposition, especially in the U.S.; central banks have to choose between stalling the economy and continuing to drive inflation.

That the banking and monetary system is a “confidence scheme,” i.e., one where trust is essential, is being underscored once again following the recent events surrounding SVB.

Some are expressing disappointment with bitcoin, as it was touted in many quarters as a hedge against inflation. In fact, bitcoin performed excellently during the years of unbridled monetary expansion, but is now suffering relative its all-time highs, like other risk and tech stocks.

Does that mean Bitcoin has failed? Not at all! If you look beyond the day-to-day price plate, you see an increasingly-vibrant ecosystem emerging around Bitcoin, such as Bitcoin mining with green energy, pumping more computing power into the decentralized, disinflationary monetary system than ever before.

As an alternative money and payment system that has no central vulnerability, no opening hours, no CEO, no one to block an account, and is always available to everyone around the globe, Bitcoin has more relevance than ever.

This is a guest post by Julian Liniger. Opinions expressed are entirely their own and do not necessarily reflect those of BTC Inc or Bitcoin Magazine.

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VanEck Ethereum Futures ETF Debuts In The U.S.

The United States cryptocurrency sector received a jolt on Monday, as VanEck today marks the inaugural debut of its Ethereum-based exchange-traded fund…



The United States cryptocurrency sector received a jolt on Monday, as VanEck today marks the inaugural debut of its Ethereum-based exchange-traded fund (ETF). The innovative investment instrument is designed to offer investors indirect exposure to the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization. This exposure is achieved by investing in contracts of Ethereum (ETH) futures.

The product, listed on VanEck’s website, commenced trading on October 2nd on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE). This milestone establishes VanEck as one of the pioneering U.S. investment managers to introduce an ETF grounded in Ether futures—cash-settled ETH futures contracts traded on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, a registered exchange supervised by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).

VanEck had disclosed its plans to launch an ETF based on Ether futures last week, indicating that it had received the eagerly awaited approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

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The competition for Ethereum futures-based ETFs gained momentum earlier this year when several managers, including Bitwise, ProShares, VanEck, and Grayscale, submitted proposals for such products. As of the latest count, approximately 15 entities have submitted their proposals to the SEC this year.

While U.S. regulators greenlit the launch of the first ETFs based on Bitcoin futures in 2021, they had not previously endorsed funds tied to futures of other cryptocurrencies. VanEck, at that time, emerged as the second manager in the nation to introduce a BTC futures ETF.

In addition to VanEck’s Ethereum futures performance-focused product, several others also made their debut on this Monday. ProShares, the same company that introduced the first U.S. Bitcoin futures ETF in 2021, introduced the ProShares Ether Strategy ETF, along with two others offering a blend of BTC and ETH exposure. Bitwise, another manager, announced the launch of two ETH futures ETFs: the Bitwise Ethereum Strategy ETF and the Bitwise Bitcoin and Ether Equal Weight Strategy ETF.

The crypto community is still awaiting the introduction of the first spot ETFs for both Bitcoin and ETH. In August, the SEC delayed it decision to issue spot crypto ETFs, although no official reason was cited in the decision.

The post VanEck Ethereum Futures ETF Debuts In The U.S. appeared first on The Dales Report.

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Study uncovers function of mysterious disordered regions of proteins implicated in cancer

Study uncovers function of mysterious disordered regions of proteins implicated in cancer Credit: Courtesy of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute Study uncovers…



Study uncovers function of mysterious disordered regions of proteins implicated in cancer

Credit: Courtesy of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Study uncovers function of mysterious disordered regions of proteins implicated in cancer

Study Title: A disordered region controls cBAF activity via condensation and partner recruitment

Publication: Cell, Monday, October 2, 2023 (

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute author: Cigall Kadoch, PhD


New research from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute researcher Cigall Kadoch, PhD, along with colleagues at Princeton University and the Washington University in St. Louis, reveals a key role for intrinsically disordered proteins known as IDRs that are implicated in a wide range of human diseases, from cancer to neurodegeneration. Kadoch’s team studies large protein complexes called mSWI/SNF or BAF complexes that control which genes turn on and off in cells. BAF complexes are the most frequently mutated cellular entities, second only to TP53, a tumor suppressor. Intrigued by the fact that over half of the complex mass contains IDRs, including the ARID1A/B subunits in which a high frequency of disease-causing lesions, or mutations, accumulate, the group set out to define their contributions. They found that these IDR regions lead to two important functions: first, condensation, the tight clustering of proteins in close distance to one another in the nucleus, and second, protein-protein interactions that are required for the proper positioning and activity of BAF complexes along DNA. Kadoch and colleagues show that the right interactions depend on highly specific “sequence grammars” within the protein’s IDR amino acid code, a concept broadly useful to the burgeoning area of work in this area to understand and ultimately therapeutically target biomolecular condensates and their constituents.


IDRs comprise a large percentage of the human proteome and are particularly important for nuclear proteins that govern our genomic architecture and gene expression. Their disruption is frequent in cancer. This study sheds light on the sequence-specific contributions of IDRs to the highly disease-relevant mSWI/SNF (BAF) chromatin remodeling complexes, which have become top therapeutic targets in oncology.


Howard Hughes Medical Institute, The Mark Foundation, National Institutes of Health, United States Air Force Office of Scientific Research, St. Jude Research Collaboratives, Fujifilm, and The Wellcome Trust.

Contact:  Cindy Cantrell;; 781-953-5000

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Book describes Sam Bankman-Fried with little attention span or respect for appointments

The former FTX CEO was reportedly invited by Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour to be her special guest at the Met Gala, only to cancel at the last minute….



The former FTX CEO was reportedly invited by Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour to be her special guest at the Met Gala, only to cancel at the last minute.

Michael Lewis, author of The Big Short, has painted an interesting picture of Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) in his soon-to-be released book on the former FTX CEO.

In an excerpt of Going Infinite: The Rise and Fall of a New Tycoon published in the Washington Post on Oct. 1, Lewis described several interactions Bankman-Fried had with the media and influential figures prior to the downfall of FTX and his criminal charges in the United States. According to the author, he would frequently play video games in the background of online interviews — his League of Legends exploits are well reported — often giving little attention to people including Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour.

“Sam didn’t want to seem rude,” said Lewis on SBF’s talk with Wintour. “It was just that he needed to be playing this other game at the same time as whatever game he had going in real life. His new social role as the world’s most interesting new child billionaire required him to do all kinds of dumb stuff. He needed something, other than what he was expected to be thinking about, to occupy his mind.”

Lewis added that Natalie Tien, who moved into the role of FTX’s head of public relations and SBF’s “personal scheduler”, said the former CEO cancelled many highly publicized appearances — often at the last minute — for seemingly no reason at all. The Wintour interview reportedly led to FTX's sponsorship and Bankman-Fried as a special guest at the Met Gala, which he ended up snubbing.

“Sam treated everything on his schedule as optional,” said the book. “The schedule was less a plan than a theory. When people asked Sam for his time, they assumed they’d posed a yes or no question [...] All he had done, when he said yes, was to assign some non-zero probability to the proposed use of his time. The dial would swing wildly as he calculated and recalculated the expected value of each commitment, right up until the moment he honored it or didn’t.”

Other in-person showings by Bankman-Fried included testifying before the U.S. House Financial Services Committee in December 2021 and meeting with Senator Mitch McConnell. The appearances marked some of the rare times SBF appeared in public wearing a suit as opposed to his usual T-shirt and shorts — though social media users pointed to footage of the then CEO's shoes slipped on without being tied at the hearing.

Related: Sam Bankman-Fried FTX trial — 5 things you need to know

It’s unclear what other information will become available once the book is released on Oct. 3, the same day jury selection begins for SBF’s criminal trial in New York. Amid the expected court proceedings, a slew of podcasts, news features, books, and other media have been released detailing aspects of Bankman-Fried’s life before and after the downfall of FTX. A 60 Minutes interview with Lewis revealed SBF had plans to pay off former U.S. President Donald Trump not to run for the office again based on the threat to elections and democracy as a whole.

On Oct. 4, Bankman-Fried will appear in a New York courtroom for the first day of his trial, scheduled to run through November. He will face 7 charges related to fraud at FTX and Alameda Research, for which he has pleaded not guilty.

Magazine: Can you trust crypto exchanges after the collapse of FTX?

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