Not even close. Here’s why.

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Image: Licensed Adobe stock, by grejak

Ah, how I sigh when I think back to the heady and wild days of the cryptocurrency boom in late 2017 and early 2018.

It’s funny, but somehow I now think of that crazy brief period of madness in the same way as I think about all the stupid stuff I did as a teenager on various “lads” holidays decades ago in (thankfully) pre-social media times.

In both cases, even though one is considerably more recent than the other, I can’t help defer to the universal “get out of jail free” card of:

We were young. We didn’t know what we were doing. …


A controversial proposition that might just hold water

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In early 2018, an analyst called Alex De Vries at Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC for short, thank goodness) produced a report titled “Bitcoin’s Growing Energy Problem” which seemed to provide a plausible calculation of the power consumption of the Bitcoin network.

It seemed viable, was generally well supported and, rightly or wrongly, went on to become the basis on which many lasting assumptions about Bitcoin’s power consumption were made.

It was timely enough that I even included a detailed reference to it in one of the chapters of the book I was writing at the time, called “How to Explain Bitcoin to Your Mum.” …


A theory explaining an ongoing blind spot

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Image: Licensed Adobe stock by Nebojsa

I was lazily perusing some of my favorite charts this morning (which, as an analyst, is not uncommon) and happened across a gold price chart from the rather appropriately named goldprice.org website.

Now, it’s true that most of my work is on Bitcoin, but there are some significant similarities between the flagship cryptocurrency and the yellow metal, so this is a chart I refer to from time to time (in conjunction with others) to get a broad view of what’s happening at a top level.

What was striking about this morning’s chart was just how significant the recent pull back had been at a time when almost all assets had risen. In fact, it took the price back to the same level it was at on July 22 — a date that now seems like a point in ancient history when you consider what has happened since. …


A Brit’s view of a democratic disaster

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Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash

Although I’m primarily an economic commentator and seek out news in this category with a passion that borders on obsession, I have also been known to observe the political scene with more than a passing interest as well.

In truth, this is largely because the latter often affects the former (and sometimes vice versa) but I have to admit I find the arena of politics as fascinating as it is bewildering.

For example, you can usually predict the behavior of a group of people when faced with an economic choice — even quite complex ones — because we understand that ultimately people will always act in their own self interest. …


Dissecting the payment giant’s bitcoin announcement

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Image: Licenses adobe stock, by Dmytro S

Today, 21st October 2020, at approximately 12.45pm UK time, the giant payment processor known as PayPal suddenly announced via Reuters that it would “allow customers to buy, sell and hold bitcoin and other virtual currencies using the [..] company’s online wallets.”

Many of us in the industry knew that PayPal had been hanging around the “alternative” digital payments scene for some time, having initially been involved with Facebook’s Libra project when it began back in June 2019. …


How Bitcoin can already save lives and livelihoods in the worst possible scenario

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Image: Abode licensed stock by Meysam Azarneshin

In 2014, the humanitarian charity known as “Save the Children” produced a ninety second video designed to show the effect of war on children in a way that hadn’t been done before.

The usual approach that had been hitherto the standard for emotionally charged financial appeals — gentle melancholy minor piano chords playing over slow motion images of children looking to camera with large, mournful eyes accompanied by a hard hitting voiceover — had been completely reimagined.

Instead, Save the Children did something that was in equal measures both brave and brilliant. Rather than show us the effects of war on individuals we might not necessarily relate to in places we might not recognize, they simply bought war to the doorsteps of people and places we are already familiar with. …


Cause for celebration … or concern?

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Image: Licensed adobe stock by Travis

In a chance Google search I discovered that Bitcoin had reached a new all-time high (ATH) today.

I was quite surprised about this. After all, as a full time analyst and commentator on the adoption and development of Bitcoin, you would think it was something I would have noticed.

Not only that, but my Twitter feed should be annoyingly full of pictures of “Lambos” and “Moons,” but it wasn’t. Thank God.

Yet, here it was, in green and white, a simple chart showing a wobbly, but undeniably upwards trend line to a new all-time high, unequivocally confirming that the fiat currency equivalent of one bitcoin has definitely reached a value hitherto unseen … in Turkish lira. …


But who will win?

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Licensed Adobe image, by AgnorMark

How far we’ve come.

In a little over a decade, Bitcoin has gone from being a little club of geeks sending “magic internet money” to each other to a truly global money phenomenon held by individuals, funds and even publicly listed companies. Like it or loathe it, Bitcoin is almost certainly here to stay.

The main focus, of course, is almost always on price, but this is often just a function of market forces rather than a true indicator of what’s really going on. …


Terrifying is not a word I expected to be using

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Photo by Jim Stapleton on Unsplash

I really wasn’t planning to write this article today, but it’s one of those that I could barely stop myself typing as I watched the US presidential debate here in the UK this morning.

It was certainly compelling — but probably not for the right reasons.

I am known as an economic writer, not a political one, but the two often do go hand in hand, which, depending on which school of economics you subscribe to, is either a good thing or a bad thing. …


How can we be so certain with such a bold claim?

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Image: licensed adobe stock, by Stockwerk-Fotodesign

The view about bitcoin either “going to zero” or becoming one of the “world’s most valuable assets” is a simple, common observation that in reality is probably quite accurate.

Ultimately, bitcoin is not something that will “half work.” It will either succeed in its mission of being a way of moving real value around the world quickly and easily, or it will fail completely. It is, quite appropriately, a binary outcome, either a one or a zero.

Those of us in the industry who work with and promote Bitcoin day in and day out understand the risks. After all, while Bitcoin is very different from traditional fiat currencies and carries numerous advantages over the existing system, it still relies on one common aspect, at least partially. …

About

Jason Deane

I blog on things I am passionate about: Bitcoin, writing, money, life’s crazy turns and being a dad. Lover of learning, family and cheese. (jasondeane@msn.com)

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