The Daily: Bitcoin Burns Critics, Bill Clinton Does Blockchain
There’s never a dull day in crypto. It’s soap opera for geeks who are too busy to do soap opera. Whether you’re a “buidler” or “hodler”, The Daily delivers the latest drama from the cryptocurrency world in less time than it takes to solve the captcha and log in to your favorite exchange. Today’s edition details a hit piece on Bitcoin that gets everything wrong and Bill Clinton’s foray into the realm of blockchain.
Bill Clinton Steps Out of Retirement and Into the World of Blockchain
Crypto Twitter was watching closely and meming intensely when former US President Bill Clinton stepped up to make the keynote address at Ripple’s Swell conference yesterday. His remarks read in places as a blockchain-by-numbers monologue penned by a scriptwriter who wanted to please everyone and offend no one: “The more you develop new technologies like blockchain,” ruminated the ex-President, “AI technologies, robotic technologies…the more the disparity of access is going to be felt.”
He also implored: “You can’t apply an old regulatory regime to a new technology. You end up killing the goose that laid the golden egg,” which could be a veiled plea to the SEC not to prosecute Ripple for selling an unregistered security, or simply some well-meaning advice to overzealous US regulators seeking to make their mark on the rising cryptoconomy. Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse’s speech at Swell was less vanilla, including an attack on BTC on the basis that “XRP is about 1,000 times faster than a bitcoin transaction and about 1,000 times less expensive than a bitcoin transaction.”
Mr Garlinghouse was being more than a little disingenuous there, since anyone can create a more centralized altcoin and boast that is faster and cheaper than bitcoin, but his comments were well received, at least, by holders of his company’s ripple cryptocurrency.
Bitcoin Core Bug Spreads Its Wings
The recently discovered bug that threatened bitcoin core has now been exploited…on an entirely different network. Because many cryptocurrencies are little more than bitcoin clones, their developers may have unwittingly imported the same error that had lain undiscovered in BTC since 2016 up until last month. An obscure cryptocurrency called Pigeoncoin was double spent using the same CVE-2018-17144 exploit that threatened bitcoin core. 235 million pigeoncoins were fraudulently created, but their value came to a nominal $15,000. Nevertheless, the feat demonstrated the need for other bitcoin copycats to patch their code, as the likes of litecoin and bitcoin gold now have. The latter, having already fallen prey to a 51% attack this year, could do without another double spend controversy.
Writer Takes Aim at Bitcoin, Fails
As we recently reported, Bitcoin is facing a flurry of shameless 10-year anniversary cash-ins. While its official birthday is penciled in as January 3rd, the day Satoshi mined the genesis block, a smaller birthday will fall on October 31 2018, the tenth anniversary of the Bitcoin whitepaper being published. One writer has attempted to capitalize on the milestone by publishing a hit piece entitled Bitcoin: 10 Years of Smoke and Mirrors.
Some of its more amusing takes include her assertion that Bitcoin “is the go-to currency of criminals and a way for cybercrooks to wash their money.” That will be the US dollar actually, which began life in 1792. The author then attempts to pour scorn on Bitcoin’s achievements to date by observing that “Ten years after PayPal launched, it was operating in 190 countries and had 60 million users…Ten years after Amazon launched, it was nearing 70 million users and had just launched Amazon Prime.”
The beauty of Bitcoin is that it is opt-in money. It has no shareholders to placate, no daily active user threshold to meet and no marketing budget to account for. It is the antithesis of Paypal and Amazon and cannot be measured using the yardsticks that the inflationary and debt-based financial system uses to determine success. If there’s any smoke, that’s because Bitcoin is an incendiary device that will burn those too dumb or slow to grasp the revolution that’s materializing before their eyes. In the words of Satoshi, “If you don’t believe me or don’t get it, I don’t have time to try to convince you, sorry.”