Humans are now a global civilization
Not just in our occupancy of the planet, but we are connected in a fundamental way that was difficult to even imagine before the advent of the modern global internet. Though tribalism divides us based on locality and culture, we have found communities on the web that unite peoples based on common interests.
Currency is a funny thing, we take it for granted sometimes how little thought we put into the concept. I mean why would we? Give someone a few green pieces of paper and they will give you something in return. And, in order to do that we need a central authority that we can all trust to ensure that no one abuses the system. Centralized authorities concentrate power, and power corrupts.
The 2008 crisis is often pointed at as an example of some of the most blatant negligence, greed, failure of oversight, and arguably criminal and predatory behavior, all perpetrated by those that we trusted to secure our financial system. The general sentiment is that there was not enough punishment for the individuals, organizations, banks, and regulators; and, in fact, they were bailed out to the tune of $700 billion in order to “stop the bleeding” and get us back on track. Too big to fail they said.
Despite massive scandals, criminal activity, and fraud resulting in transference of wealth from the masses to those in power, those that are caught receive a slap on the wrist and a million dollar severance. This is not hyperbole, this is the reality. There’s a new massive scandal at least once a year by the very giant financial institutions that we “trust” to run our global financial system and little-to-no punishment for those involved. People this powerful just don’t go to jail. It’s no surprise they are so reckless, there’s little deterrent to disincentivize it, and the payoff is massive. When the power of the world’s money is in the hands of the few, it’s just a matter of time before the next financial crisis.
We know concentration of power leads to corruption, but we previously had no other choice. There are countless other examples throughout history of rampant corruption and abuse of power. We accept centralized authorities as a necessary evil that organize and secure our money for us because we have no other option. That evil is no longer necessary.
The advent of bitcoin removes the need for central authority in exchange of value
This statement has radical implications that are difficult to fathom because the institution of banking is so baked into our society that it’s hard to see our civilization without them. There are banks still in operation today that date back to the 1600s. They are the oldest cabal, “old money”, incumbent ancient dinosaurs that control the world. But, like so many industries before them, they have become obsolete in almost every way. The power that once lay in their hands is evaporating.
Electricity killed oil lamps. Cars killed buggy whips. Digital technology has disrupted video rental, book stores, film cameras, taxis, and more. Disrupting an industry like banking was previously unthinkable. But it’s an unfortunate reality (for banks), because bitcoin turns your smartphone into a bank.
Bitcoin is decentralized and neutral; it removes central middlemen from transactions. This is peer-to-peer digital money.
We are a global civilization and we deserve a global currency
It’s hard to comprehend the advantages of this technology because it is developing so rapidly; we are innovating on money itself as a global civilization. Individuals now posses the power to innovate in the space of finances and money without permission from any government or bank, something never before possible.
The impact of crypto currencies to those in developed “first world” nations will seem small at first, after all we have access to modern financial tools and we can send money to each other with relative ease. Banks in the United States haven’t even ran out of money in over 80 years! Life is good here.
But those in developing countries and those that are under negligent, greedy dictatorial regimes are at the whim of their overlords. Billions of people without access to banking, inflationary spirals, nanny-state blanket financial surveillance, all gone in the blink of the eye thanks to bitcoin and it’s ilk.
“Money, so they say, is the root of all evil today” -Pink Floyd
So why do we need bitcoin?
Money is the system of global commerce, our earnings, spending, our life savings; they say money isn’t everything but it sure is a lot. The power over money must no longer lie in the hands of a corruptible few, and instead, we must take that power back, as a global civilization of billions, we all deserve equal access and freedom of money.