‘Few understand’ indeed

By el Prof
February 8, 2022
Image: Twitter

My favorite stories to report are the Twitter fights I get into so here we are again. @JasonPLowery — Internet famous for being a member of U.S. Space Force currently pursuing a PhD from MIT in incorporating Bitcoin into the National Defense strategy, and for being followed by @3lPr0f — recently tweet a teaser of his research. TL;DR: his opinion was wrong and he should feel bad. 

His premise rests on the idea that our tangible physical assets that matter most — land, gold, oil, and equities — are protected at the cost of human lives, and that we could transfer the cost of protecting those assets from human lives to electricity, in the form of creating synthetic alternatives to represent ownership and dedicating hashing power to maintaining them. So, like, Bitcoin will end war, basically. 

I’m not exactly a crypto skeptic — I could wax poetic on the power of decentralizing the governance and availability of information as long as the bowl’s not cashed. But, while Bitcoin is many things, it is not a ‘global defense network in the cloud’. A synthetic representation of physical assets such as cryptocurrency is no different from the scrap of paper in the county courthouse showing I own my home right now. Like, if enough people with guns showed up and told me the house was theirs now, I’d probably say, yeah, it is. I’d have a record of ownership, immutable, until someone mutes it.  

The nature of ‘kinetic power projection’ — DoD speak for ‘the human predisposition toward killing people we want something from’ — isn’t going to change with new technology. Just because we now have a mechanism capable of proving ownership that transcends borders doesn’t mean people respect the ledger that keeps it.

When I pointed this out, a BTC maxi chimed in, ignoring the point I had just made, to say that Bitcoin removed the incentive to attack because there were no financial rewards for doing so. So, like, yeah, maybe someone won’t hold you up for your Meta Mask password (especially when it’s so much easier to phish it from you) but land has tangible properties that can’t be synthetically created, so no amount of hash power can protect it. Eventually, he conceded that kinetic warfare would always still exist, but also if you got robbed of your land and stranded naked at the border you could still access your wallet, which, sure? But, I assume, scant consolation, given the circumstances. And classic misdirection.

Since even his staunchest defenders eventually cede to reason, why make the claim that Bitcoin reduces ‘kinetic power projection’ in the first place? It’s clearly nonsense, and scary that guys like Jason are actively shaping policies and opinions via baseless claims… Oh. Wait. Not exactly a new phenomenon, then, is it? 

el Prof

el Prof

hey, i'm el prof, but most people call me Connor. Thanks for reading.

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