US Senate hearings on Crypto sound like great fun

Discussion in 'Alternative Investments' started by Brendan Burgess, 11 Oct 2018.

  1. Brendan Burgess

    Brendan Burgess Founder

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    ‘The Mother of All Scams’: Roubini Slams Crypto in Senate Hearing


    Roubini read Bitcoin believers the riot act, calling virtual currencies “the mother of all scams and (now busted) bubbles.” He also fired shots at the technology behind digital tokens, which many believe is what holds the real promise.

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    Roubini faces off against crypto advocate Peter Van Valkenburgh, director of research at Washington-based lobbying group Coin Center.

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    The truly disruptive innovation underlying Bitcoin, Van Valkenburgh said, is the consensus mechanism, or the process by which computers agree on a shared set of data and then record updates to the data.
     
  2. SBarrett

    SBarrett Frequent Poster

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    Would these be the same Senators who had to ask Mark Zuckerberg how Facebook made money? I'm sure they'll have a great understanding of blockchain!!
     
  3. tecate

    tecate Frequent Poster

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    Last edited by a moderator: 12 Oct 2018
    I'm not sure their understanding is going to be enhanced by Dr. Doom (Roubini). He is consistently scathing in his assessment of crypto. There's no doubt crypto is not without issues to resolve but he never has one good thing to say about it. There are not many things that don't have some merits!

    Just to add, this guy makes a good point! Tweet

    Today an economist is arguing against technology in front of a group of Senators. They don’t realize the technologists didn’t wait to be invited to argue against current monetary policy. The technologists just built a solution and released it to the world.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 12 Oct 2018
  4. Brendan Burgess

    Brendan Burgess Founder

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    I think an economist or analyst is well capable of commenting on what money is and what it is not and on the value of something. They would also have a good understanding of the history of bubbles.

    So Roubini was well qualified to testify that Bitcoin was a scam.

    I was surprised that he felt qualified to dismiss Blockchain. I doubt he has the expertise or understanding to do that.

    Brendan
     
  5. tecate

    tecate Frequent Poster

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    Last edited: 12 Oct 2018
    I'm not questioning his background or credentials as an economist. He was one of the few to call the 2008 U.S. housing bubble and subsequent crash.

    However, that he doesn't see one redeeming feature in any cryptocurrency (as he's equally scathing as regards altcoins as he is in relation to Bitcoin) - that to me doesn't sound like a balanced viewpoint. In his twitter splurge pre-congress testimony, outside of the ranting there were three criticisms he presented with in relation to decentralisation;

    1. Crypto exchanges are centralised.
    Been discussed within the community. Nobody is denying the fact and nobody in the community likes it. However, where is the acknowledgement that decentralised exchanges are emerging?

    2. Lead developers have too much influence and so in this respect he claims there's centralisation.
    Yes and no. Various models of governance have been applied in crypto - as newer projects experiment with different approaches. They're refining the model. Each version has it's drawbacks thus far. However, it's more than ironic that he specifically accused Vitalik Buterin on these grounds. Vitalik himself is actively searching to improve upon current mechanisms!


    3. That cryptocurrency miners are centralised. Again, in the case of Proof of Work (PoW) based coins, sure it's currently an issue. However, is there any acknowledgement that due to the equipment being used, this is changing? Does he know that this is not the case for all cryptocurrencies? Does he know that some crypto's don't involve commercial miners?


    In relation to all three points, you say that he is qualified to speak to that - and whilst I agree generally, we're talking about the application of a technological solution. He doesn't come from a tech background. For the most part, the criticisms he has with regard to a lack of decentralisation in crypto ...that discussion with regard to whether that's the case and if that's the case how it can be addressed is a technical one. Not the purview of a top economist.
    A couple of things on that. The word 'was' implicates past tense. Bitcoin is alive and well.
    As regards scam, that's sensationalist verbiage used by Roubini to garner attention and it's inaccurate. Here's the definition of a scam;

    scam
    skam/
    noun
    INFORMAL
    1. 1.
      a dishonest scheme; a fraud.
      "an insurance scam"
      synonyms: fraud, swindle, fraudulent scheme, racket, trick;

    So if Bitcoin is a 'scam', who is it perpetrated by? A dishonest scheme has to have a fraudster behind it right - if it's supposed to be orchestrated?

    For the very same reason, he's not as likely as you think to be best placed to assess cryptocurrency either i.e. it's technological in nature.
     
    Last edited: 12 Oct 2018
  6. tecate

    tecate Frequent Poster

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    This guy is for the birds. Apparently people in the crypto-space are right wing, white supremacists....o_O

    LINK