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Fertilizer prices are soaring – and that’s an opportunity to promote more sustainable ways of growing crops

Farmers are contending with huge spikes in fertilizer prices. The Biden administration is paying US companies to boost synthetic fertilizer production,…

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A farmer spreads fertilizer on a field in Berks County, Pa. Harold Hoch/MediaNews Group/Reading Eagle via Getty Images

Farmers are coping with a fertilizer crisis brought on by soaring fossil fuel prices and industry consolidation. The price of synthetic fertilizer has more than doubled since 2021, causing great stress in farm country.

This crunch is particularly tough on those who grow corn, which accounts for half of U.S. nitrogen fertilizer use. The National Corn Growers Association predicts that its members will spend 80% more in 2022 on synthetic fertilizers than they did in 2021. A recent study estimates that on average, this will represent US$128,000 in added costs per farm.

In response, the Biden administration announced a new grant program on March 11, 2022, “to support innovative American-made fertilizer to give U.S. farmers more choices in the marketplace.” The U.S. Department of Agriculture will invest $500 million to try to lower fertilizer costs by increasing production. But since this probably isn’t enough money to construct new fertilizer plants, it’s not clear how the money will be spent.

I direct the Swette Center for Sustainable Food Systems at Arizona State University and have held senior positions at the USDA, including serving as deputy secretary of agriculture from 2009 to 2013. In my view, producing more synthetic fertilizer should not be the only answer to this serious challenge. The U.S. should also provide support for nature-based solutions, including farming practices that help farmers reduce or forgo synthetic fertilizers, and biological products that substitute for harsher chemical inputs.

Peas, beans and clover add nitrogen to soil naturally and can supplement or substitute for synthetic nitrogen fertilizer.

Too much fertilizer in the wrong places

All plants need nutrients to grow, especially the “big three” macronutrients: nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Farmers can fertilize their fields by planting crops that add nitrogen to soil naturally or by applying animal manure and compost to soil.

Since World War II, however, farmers have relied mainly on manufactured synthetic fertilizers that contain various ratios of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, along with secondary nutrients and micronutrients. That shift happened because manufacturers produced huge quantities of ammonium nitrate, the main ingredient in explosives, during the war; when the conflict ended, they switched to making nitrogen fertilizer.

Synthetic fertilizers have greatly enhanced crop yields and are rightly credited with helping to feed the world. But they aren’t used evenly around the world. In poor regions like sub-Saharan Africa, too little fertilizer is available. In wealthier areas, abundant synthetic fertilizers have contributed to overapplication and serious environmental harm.

Excess fertilizer washes off of fields during storms and runs into rivers and lakes. There, it fertilizes huge blooms of algae that die and decompose, depleting oxygen in the water and creating “dead zones” that can’t support fish or other aquatic life. This process, eutrophication, is a major problem in the Great Lakes, the Chesapeake Bay, the Gulf of Mexico and many other U.S. water bodies.

Excess nitrogen can also contaminate drinking water and threaten human health. And fertilizers, whether animal-sourced or synthetic, are a significant source of nitrous oxide, a potent greenhouse gas.

Green scum covers water around a dock.
Heavy nutrient runoff from farmlands produces chronic blooms of algae in Lake Erie, the smallest Great Lake by volume. NOAA

What’s causing the crisis

One reason U.S. fertilizer prices have spiked is that farmers are beholden to imports. COVID-19 disrupted supply chains, especially from China, a major fertilizer producer. And the war in Ukraine has cut off access to potash, an important potassium source, from Russia and Belarus.

Another factor is that the fertilizer industry is highly concentrated. There is little competition, so farmers have no choice but to buy fertilizer at the market price. Several U.S. state attorneys general have called on economists to study anti-competitive practices in the fertilizer industry.

The USDA is seeking information on competition and supply chain concerns in fertilizer markets with a public comment deadline of June 15, 2022. But out of 66 specific questions the department posed with this request, only one addresses what I believe is the key issue: “How might USDA better support modes of production that rely less on fertilizer, or support access to markets that may pay a premium for products relying on less fertilizer?”

Rethinking how to grow crops

I see an opportunity for the Biden administration to take a fresh look at biological products as substitutes for synthetic fertilizers. This category includes biofertilizers and bionutrients – natural materials that provide crop nutrition. Examples include microorganisms that extract nitrogen from the air and convert it into forms that plants can use, and fertilizers converted from manure, food and other plant and wood wastes.

Another category, biostimulants, comprises natural materials that enhance uptake of plant nutrients, reduce crop stress and increase crop growth and quality. Examples include algae and other plant extracts, microorganisms and humic acids – complex molecules produced naturally in soil when organic material breaks down.

In the past, critics dismissed natural products like these as “snake oil,” with little scientific evidence to show that they worked. Now, however, most experts believe that while much remains to be learned, current biofertilizers “offer huge potential in terms of new and more sustainable crop management practices.”

Studies have demonstrated many benefits from these products. They include less need for fertilizer, larger crop yields, enhanced soil health and fewer carbon emissions.

Large synthetic fertilizer companies like Mosaic, OCP and Nutrien are distributing, acquiring or investing in these biological technologies. Agribusiness giant Bayer has partnered with Ginkgo Bioworks in a joint venture called Joyn whose mission is creating “sustainable ag biologicals for crop protection and fertility that meet or exceed the performance of their chemical counterparts.”

A hand spreads pellets and crushed rock over dirt.
A farmer spreads two types of organic fertilizers – bone meal pellets and rock phosphate – before planting spinach in Golden, Colo. Joe Amon/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Offering more choices

Panicked U.S. farmers facing daunting fertilizer prices are looking for options. In public comments on USDA’s fertilizer initiative, the Illinois Corn Growers Association urged the department to investigate why farmers apply fertilizers at levels higher than necessary, while others noted a shortage of agronomists sufficiently trained to guide farmers on how best to sustainably fertilize their crops.

I believe now is an opportune time for USDA to offer incentives for adopting biologicals, as well as practices that organic farmers use to replace synthetic fertilizers, such as crop rotation, composting and raising crops and livestock together. A first step would be to deploy technicians who can advise farmers about sustainable practices and biological products. The department recently announced a new $300 million initiative to help farmers transition to organic production; this is the right idea, but more help is needed.

The agency could also provide one-time payments to farmers in exchange for reducing their use of synthetic fertilizers, which would help to compensate them as they shift their production methods. In the longer term, I believe the USDA should develop new crop insurance tools to protect farmers from the risks of transitioning to more sustainable options. In my view, this kind of broad response would yield more value than a taxpayer-funded, status quo approach to synthetic fertilizers.

Kathleen Merrigan worked for six years at the US Department of Agriculture, most recently serving as Deputy Secretary of Agriculture from 2009-2013. She is a venture partner at Astanor Ventures, a European-based agtech firm that invests in a wide range of innovations, including in the biocontrol/biostiumulant sector. She previously served on the board of directors of Marrone Bio Innovations and holds stock in the company.

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Coinbase posts $1.1B loss, Polygon DApps rocket 400% in 2022 and Elon Musk says inflation is on the decline: Hodler’s Digest, Aug 7-13

Coming every Saturday, Hodlers Digest will help you track every single important news story that happened this week. The best (and worst) quotes, adoption…

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Coming every Saturday, Hodlers Digest will help you track every single important news story that happened this week. The best (and worst) quotes, adoption and regulation highlights, leading coins, predictions and much more a week on Cointelegraph in one link.

Top Stories This Week

 

Elon Musk: US past peak inflation after Tesla sells 90% of Bitcoin

With Tesla now having sold 90% of its Bitcoinholdings during the bear market, Elon Musk says the U.S. economy is past peak inflation and predicts that only a mild to moderate recession could be incoming. We sort of have some insight into where prices are headed over time, and the interesting thing that were seeing now is that most of our commodities, most of the things that go into a Tesla not all, more than half the prices are trending down in six months from now, Musk said at Teslas 2022 Annual Meeting of Stockholders.

 

Coming sooner: ETH devs move up the date for Merge

The long-awaited Merge looks to be ahead of schedule, with Ethereum core developers Tim Beiko and Terence Tsao agreeing on a developer call Thursday to tentatively set the date of the Merge for Sept. 15. The previously estimated date from Beiko was Sept. 19, and suggested that the final preparation work is going smoothly after the final Goerli testnet merge went off without a hitch this week.

 

 

Coinbase posts $1.1B loss in Q2 on fast and furious crypto downturn

Major crypto exchange Coinbase posted a whopping Q2 loss of $1.1 billion, citing a fast and furious crypto downturn during the quarter. The firm noted that Q2 was a tough quarter as trading volume and transaction revenue fell 30% and 35%, respectively. It marks the second consecutive quarter of loss for the company this year. The current downturn came fast and furious, and we are seeing customer behavior mirror that of past down markets, the firm wrote in a shareholder letter posted on Tuesday.

 

Decentralized apps on Polygon hit 37,000, rocketing 400% this year

The number of DApps on Ethereum scaling platform Polygon topped 37,000 this week, marking a 400% increase since the start of 2022. The project provided a breakdown of DApp projects built on Polygon, which notably showed that 74% of teams integrated exclusively on Polygon, while 26% deployed on both Polygon and Ethereum. Polygon also stated that its ecosystem has now seen more than 142 million unique user addresses and $5 billion in assets secured, with around 1.6 billion transactions processed on the network to date.

 

Anonymous user sends ETH from Tornado Cash to prominent figures following sanctions

One day after the U.S. Treasury sanctioned crypto mixer Tornado Cash over its alleged role in money laundering operations, intervals of 0.1 Ether transactions began being sent from the smart contract to prominent figures such as Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong and American television host Jimmy Fallon. The move appears to be a critique or satirical commentary on the U.S. governments current policy of also sanctioning addresses that interacted with Tornado Cash.

 

 

 

Winners and Losers

 

At the end of the week, Bitcoin (BTC) is at $23,840.93, Ether (ETH) at $1,882.20 and XRP at $0.37. The total market cap is at $1.13 trillion, according to CoinMarketCap.

Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the top three altcoin gainers of the week are Celsius (CEL) at 93.85%, Ankr (ANKR) at 46.99% and Decred (DCR) at 26.34%.

The top three altcoin losers of the week are ApeCoin (APE) at 9.03%, Curve DAO Token (CRV) at 5.01% and Kusama (KSM) at 4.53%.

For more info on crypto prices, make sure to read Cointelegraphs market analysis.

 

 

 

 

Most Memorable Quotations

 

A senior living community has almost no exposure to the crypto ecosystem unless their grandchildren tell them about it.

Owen Robertson, marketing associate at Dominant Strategies

 

The fact that I dont have an alternative to Facebook is the reason why Facebook is a monopoly. But if it was on a blockchain, I could transmit data freely, there could become [different] Facebooks.

Yat Siu, co-founder of Animoca Brands

 

In the past six months or so, weve seen valuations on companies come down to a bit more realistic valuations, and its become a great time to begin allocating capital.

Gerard Berile, venture and investment principal at Wave Financial

 

Going forward, that mentality towards risk management while still being bullish over the long term is very important. […] You can be bullish on crypto, but you can still sell out of the market.

Jeffrey Gao, CEO of Cypherpunk Holdings

 

Scalability isnt just like some boring thing where you just need like ‘cost numbers go down’ scalability, I think actually enables and unlocks entirely new classes of applications.

Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of Ethereum

 

So I think institutional adoption is where its going, and the institutions are what is going to enable […] that killer app for consumers to really bring crypto and DeFi to the next level.

Boris Alergant, head of DeFi markets at Ripple Labs

 

Prediction of the Week

 

$29K Bitcoin is closer than you might expect, according to derivatives data

With Bitcoins price continuing to battle $24,000 resistance, facing rejection on Aug. 10 but managing not to be knocked off the 52-day-long ascending channel, Cointelegraph market analyst Marcel Pechman suggested the price could eventually hit $29,000 by October. He pointed to a bullish chart formation with a support level of $22,500 that indicates the price could climb to just under $30,000. Pechman also noted that while BTC derivatives data show a lack of interest from leveraged longs, there is no indication of a surprise crash being priced into the market.

 

 

FUD of the Week

ASIC chair troubled by sheer amount of risk-taking crypto investors

Joe Longo, the chairman of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), has raised alarm bells over the number of Aussies that invested in unregulated, volatile crypto assets during the pandemic. As part of a media release on Thursday, Longo pointed to ASIC research from November 2021 that found that crypto was the second most common investment product, with 44% of those surveyed reporting holding it. Out of those investors, 25% indicated that crypto assets were the only investment class they were involved in.

 

Cross-chain bridge RenBridge laundered $540M in hacking proceeds: Elliptic

According to a Wednesday report from blockchain analytics firm Elliptic, crypto bridge RenBridge has facilitated the laundering of at least $540 million in hacking proceeds since 2020. According to the report, the laundering was conducted via a process known as chain hopping converting one form of cryptocurrency into another and moving it across multiple blockchains.

 

Tornado Cash co-founder reports being kicked off GitHub as industry reacts to sanctions

Tornado Cash co-founder Roman Semenov claimed his account on developer platform GitHub was suspended on Monday. Semenov noted that, despite not being individually named as a Specially Designated National by the U.S. Treasurys Office of Foreign Assets Control, he seemed to be facing repercussions relating to the Treasurys allegations that Tornado Cash laundered more than $7 billion worth of crypto.

 

 

Best Cointelegraph Features

How to bake your own DAO at home With just 5 ingredients!

Decentralized autonomous organizations come in all sizes and flavors. Some can seem sweet, others turn sour. It can be fun and interesting to create one that suits your needs and satisfies your hunger for something new.

Reinventing yourself in the Metaverse through digital identity

Metaverse users can reinvent themselves with a digital identity built upon avatars and digital assets, but there are challenges to consider.

How Bitcoin whales make a splash in markets and move prices

Are the whales selling in this bear market? A deep dive into their on-chain data.

 

The best of blockchain, every Tuesday

Subscribe for thoughtful explorations and leisurely reads from Magazine.


By subscribing you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy

 

 

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Metaverse still not ready for virtual weddings and legal proceedings

Since the legislative framework surrounding the Metaverse is quite gray, experts still don’t see the technology being used to settle legal issues.

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Since the legislative framework surrounding the Metaverse is quite gray, experts still don’t see the technology being used to settle legal issues.

As the global Web3 ecosystem continued to evolve at a staggering pace, so have the various use cases associated with this niche. In a striking new development, a high-ranking Singaporean government minister recently noted that legal marriage proceedings, court case disputes, and government services could one day be conducted using Metaverse platforms.

While delivering a keynote address at Singapore’s TechLaw Fest 2022 late last month, the country’s second minister for law, Edwin Tong, was quoted as saying that he would not be surprised if, in the future, intimate events such as the solemnization of marriages as well as legal disputes “could take place within the Metaverse,” adding:

“It would not be unthinkable that, besides registration of marriages, other government services can soon be accessed online via the Metaverse. There's no reason why the same cannot be done for legal services. The pandemic has already shown us that even dispute resolution — once seen to be a physical, high-touch process [...] can be held online.”

Expounding on his stance, Tong used a hypothetical example of a dispute involving an accident on a construction site, which he believes could be viewed in a 3D environment using augmented reality technology, thus allowing for a better reimagining of the accident. “You can put yourself into the actual tunnel or the oil containment facility to look at the dispute,” he added.

A hybrid outlook such as this, Tong believes, could make the dispute resolution process extremely convenient and efficient for governments across the planet.

Could digital legal proceedings become the norm?

According to Joseph Collement, general counsel for cryptocurrency exchange and wallet developer Bitcoin.com, dematerializing government services that require in-person attendance is the next, most coherent step for nations across the globe, especially as the world shifts from an analogous age to a digital one in this post-covid era. He added:

“Nowadays, approximately one-third of legal agreements worldwide are signed electronically. Therefore, it comes as no surprise to see modern nations such as Singapore adopt all-inclusive technologies like the Metaverse for government services. The same thinking should apply to certain civil court cases, which are still subject to extreme delays due to backlogs. While justice is delayed, the involved parties often have to suffer.”

A similar view is shared by Alexander Firsov, chief Web3.0 officer for Sensorium — an A.I.-driven Metaverse platform. He told Cointelegraph that as a space dedicated to bridging the gap between the real world and digital experiences, it’s only logical that the Metaverse will one day transform into a medium where legal proceedings can take place. 

In his view, by adopting immersive technologies, virtual legal proceedings won’t feel much different from real-life events. In fact, he believes the use of photorealistic avatars can bring a degree of humanization and presence that online meetings fail to meet. Lastly, Firsov noted that justice systems all over the world are notoriously slow, costly and the Metaverse can help address these inefficiencies, adding:

“The Metaverse can have a positive impact when it comes to the work of law enforcement agencies and other legal entities on issues such as cooperation, record keeping, and data transmission, as it holds the ability to improve important processes through the use of emerging technologies such as blockchain.”

Not everyone is sold on the idea

Dimitry Mihaylov, A.I. scientist, UN expert contractor and associate professor at the National University of Singapore, told Cointelegraph that the first problem when talking about digitally facilitated legal proceedings is that of intellectual property (IP) based legislation — since geographical borders do not factor into proceedings taking place in the Metaverse, least as of yet. He explained:

“When you get a patent, it’s valid only within a particular territory. Yet, with the Metaverse, it will be used by people worldwide. People can accidentally violate laws by using a patent in the Metaverse that is outside its area of legalization. Here’s where relevant authorities need to determine who owns the IP and under which court’s jurisdiction it falls.”

The second issue, in his opinion, pertains to data collection and ownership. This is because mainstream tech conglomerates have for the longest time been abusing the data of their clients and, therefore, it will be important that regulations pertaining to the storing and use of legal data on the Metaverse are developed before any court proceedings can take place on it.

Collement believes a physical courtroom presents features that cannot be replicated in the Metaverse. For example, the cross-examination of a witness in front of a jury to attack his credibility is an important strategy in certain cases. Even with advanced video-conferencing, some important cues and details from a witness examination can be missed by the jury. He added:

“It is unclear to me that the Metaverse is ready to host trials. Uncertainty remains as to the enforceability of Metaverse-held judgments in countries that are a member of the Hague Convention but who have not yet issued any guidance or laws in regard to these virtual proceedings.”

Furthermore, Mihaylov noted that the question of copyright is quite pertinent in this regard since it protects digital works across many countries. He explained that nowadays, companies like Google are extremely swift with their copyright actions and block any sites that infringe on their rights. “Copyright covers more than 100 countries, and it's very close to the model that the Metaverse should use. But it has no applications yet, and no such precedents have arisen so far,” he added.

Are the masses willing to accept court proceedings on the Metaverse?

Mattan Erder, associate general counsel for public blockchain infrastructure provider Orbs, told Cointelegraph that as things stand, it is actually a question of whether people are truly willing to believe the outcome of what occurs on the Metaverse as being real, especially from a legal perspective. In his view, most individuals are quite detached from a reality where they can ever see trials deciding the future of an individual, adding:

“I think we have some time before these things become real. However, the more people live their lives in the Metaverse, the closer we will get to a mental shift. There are a variety of elements that need more development before it will be really possible to have these types of core social institutions exist there.”

In Erder’s opinion, the situation being discussed here is one that is usually dealt with by governments almost exclusively. Therefore, it makes sense for the masses not to get ahead of themselves in thinking that any of these changes are going to come in the near term. He believes that legal systems have a clear preference when it comes to wanting the physical presence of all those involved in a trial, adding:

“Most people have the belief that being in the same room with someone, such as a witness, and looking them in the eyes, seeing their mannerisms, etc., is important in evaluating their credibility. Democracies grant defendants the right to directly confront the witnesses and the evidence against them, and litigants have the right to confront each other and the judge/jury.”

Lastly, a key driver when it comes to people and governments getting onboard with Metaverse-based legal proceedings and marriages is their definition of reality. To this point, Erder thinks that as the Metaverse becomes an integral part of people’s lives, the things that happen there will start to matter to people. “The Metaverse will become a microcosm of human society where there will be a natural need for things like dispute resolution,” he concluded.

The future looks “Metaverse ready”

Similarly, quite recently, the South Korean government announced that it had been actively taking steps to bolster its Metaverse ambitions by setting aside $177 million from its coffers. The country is looking to devise a platform for its citizens that grants access to a wide array of government services in a completely digital fashion.

Back in July, Metaverse infrastructure company Condense closed a seed funding round to continue the development of a 3D live streaming technology. The technology underlying the firm’s digital offering utilizes “cutting-edge computer vision, machine learning and proprietary streaming infrastructure to capture and embed a live 3D video (Video 3.0).” In the near term, the firm hopes to stream this unique live video experience into various Metaverse games and mobile applications, as well as other platforms that have been created using Unity or the Unreal Engine.

Earlier this year, Metaverse platform Decentraland laid claim to the distinguished honor of hosting the world’s first wedding on the Metaverse, with the event being attended by a total of over 2,000 guests. The proceedings were administered and solemnized by the law firm Rose Law Group.

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The Case For Bitcoin To Separate Money From The State

By separating money from the government, Bitcoin takes the control of money out of the hands of politicians and gives it back to the citizens.

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By separating money from the government, Bitcoin takes the control of money out of the hands of politicians and gives it back to the citizens.

This is an opinion editorial by Ryan Bansal, a professional software engineer and author of a Bitcoin newsletter.

“The computer can be used as a tool to liberate and protect people, rather than to control them.” — Hal Finney

Technologies are just amplifiers, not arbiters of morality. By extrapolating from the above quote, it is within reason to claim that any technology can be both a tool for either tyranny or for freedom depending on whose hands are on the power lever.

The principle of checks and balances shows that in any kind of system that relies on concentrated power, that central institution becomes the honeypot for malicious actors. Also, keep in mind the democratic principle that more distributed decision-making is more robust and fair for any society. So it sounds like a no-brainer that the best way moving forward is to develop and adopt technologies with no single ultimate power lever?

Having said that, let’s now talk about one of the most important technologies of all: money. In the evolution of monetary technology from barter systems to seashells to metal coins to gold-backed banknotes and now a central-bank-controlled fiat digital currency, the power distribution has gone from being more decentralized to being more centralized to the point where governments have managed to establish a coercive monopoly on money.

Now, I think it is a fairly non-controversial statement to say: Government corrupts anything it touches. Sure, the convenience of digital money is unmatched, but it is also important to understand the other side of it, i.e., the counterparty risk, which means needing to trust a custody provider to secure your assets — along with the fact that the historical track record of keeping this trust is not great.

However fortunately or unfortunately, recently this breach in the contract has started to happen more widely and openly. Take for example a developed democratic country like Canada, freezing the bank accounts of its citizens for protesting against COVID-19 restrictions or a country like Russia putting restrictions on its people trying to withdraw their funds after the country invaded its neighbor. In a world run purely on physical cash, this kind of power to unconstitutionally violate private property rights would be impossible to execute.

(Source)

Apart from the worsening financial censorship and geopolitical sanctions — which are a relatively recent phenomenon now that money has become almost fully digital — the corruption arising from the advent of fiat money and its problems goes further back to 1971. What do I mean? The plethora of metrics one can use to measure the health of an economy like index funds price-earnings ratios, Gini index for wealth inequality, consumer price index for inflation and cost of living, the ratio of income growth versus productivity growth, individual homeownership rates and many others have all gone haywire since the then President Richard Nixon decided to move away from the gold standard.

If you haven’t guessed the next move of governments by now, allow me to introduce you to central bank digital currencies (CBDCs). Think today’s digital money is bad enough as is? Now imagine what if it was also programmable?

You can say goodbye to any last sliver of financial autonomy. Before we know it, we’ll be living in a surveillance state with social credit scores, just like the Chinese citizens. If you’ve seen politicians trying to put a positive spin on them by randomly throwing around buzzwords, like “blockchain,” go back to the top of this article and read the first line again.

The problems that the government creates can be spoken of at great lengths, but let us move on to the solution: How to take the control of money out of the hands of politicians and give it back to the citizens?

“I don’t believe we shall ever have good money again before we take it out of the hands of governments.” — Friedrich Hayek

Imagine if our monetary system had the privacy and autonomy of cash; the convenience of being instantly and digitally transferrable all over the globe; all the while also retaining the properties of gold, i.e., nobody can steal your purchasing power over time by arbitrarily manipulating its supply only to serve their perverse political incentives?

Moreover, what if it was also running on an open-source codebase and used a public database making it globally accessible, completely transparent and fully auditable by anyone? Plus, what if it also allowed anyone with an internet connection and a computer the ability to weigh in on its monetary policy?

Finally, what if the proposed system was also decentralized in a way that it becomes impossible to stop, controlled or corrupted by anyone due to the lack of a single point of failure or by any central authority?

Sounds like a monetary technology on steroids, doesn’t it? Well, in 2008, a solution to these problems was proposed by someone using the pseudonym of Satoshi Nakamoto. I’d also like to highlight that it didn’t just come out of the blue, it has been in the making ever since the central bankers established control over the money. More precisely, it took almost 40 years of research and multiple failed attempts to engineer this masterpiece. The following visual is more tangible:

(Source)

I’d like to close by reiterating that the notion of separation of the money from the State may seem radical to you at first, but it is actually not. As I mentioned before, the monetary technologies we’ve used throughout most of our history were way more outside of the state control than current fiat money. In one way or another, the State managed to capture them. Gold is the best example of such a non-sovereign asset that people used as money for the longest time, but it had obvious attack vectors in the form of various physical limitations, i.e., hard to store, hard to secure and hard to move.

Historically speaking, there has been a tug-of-war between fiat and non-government monies. Therefore, the real issue at hand is not one of “if” money will separate from government control, but of “when.” With Bitcoin, I think the moment is finally here.

Now obviously if this article has not managed to fully convince you how Bitcoin was designed to be a truly democratic and inclusive monetary system and if you still insist on calling it a scam, I hope you’ll at least consider it is something worth taking a harder look at.

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

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