"First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, and then you win"
- by somebody
An interesting fact: this quote is attributed to Mahatma Ghandi, but there is no evidence that it was ever said by him. However, somebody did come up with this phrase, and it has a substance behind it. Everything that is new is firstly ignored and then feared. If this new entity tries to change an existing equilibrium, it will be fought. But will it win? That's up to you.
The end of a decade is approaching, and it's not looking good. Wealth gap is getting bigger, institutions losing trust and grabbing as much power as they can simultaneously. Mass surveillance is in all aspects of life - from CCTVs all around major cities to effective end of secrecy of correspondence (one of the human rights, btw). Patriot act is not going away any time soon. Social score in China and cancel culture in Silicon Valley. Even virtual assistants like Google Home and Alexa are recording everything you say and can give testimony against you.
Here's another quote that is attributed to a person who might not have said it:
"Give me control of a nation's money and I care not who makes it's laws."
The most important part of controlling the population is control over money. In my previous blog I've explained how governments are doubling down on KYC procedures for anyone who with to use money in any way. Add here a decreasing amount of cash in circulation, and the will of central banks to issue digital currencies, and you get a perfect recipe for distopian future.
The one thing that can ruin plans of small minority to have ultimate control over your life is cryptocurrency. Send it anonymously across any border, almost instantly, 24/7 and avoid enormous transaction fees. This should be a perfect tool for 21st century global community. But it's not, and it's mostly because of people in power who don't want to lose their power. Here are some barriers that they put on our road to freedom.
A common way for the governments to prevent people from using rival currencies is by taxing all operations with it. In my home country of Latvia, for example, if you convert crypto into fiat you have to pay tax immediately. In USA you have to report gains or losses of each and every crypto transaction you made, including earnings in crypto. Many other countries adopt similar attitude towards crypto, and if you're not reporting to the government - you're a criminal. Congratulations.
Needless to say that this stifles any widespread adoption. Why use something that is risky in nature and that can make you a criminal?. That is one of the reasons why HODL strategy is so lucrative - you don't pay taxes while you holding the asset. But for crypto to make difference, it has to be used.
Closely related to the first topic, governments are insisting on de anonymization of all crypto users. It's enough to send your ID once - and all addresses that you use or sent money to are now linked to your name. And it's getting harder and harder to avoid it.
Many businesses experience stark fall of user as they obligated to introduce KYC procedure. People do not want to share their personal information with third parties, especially considering that cryptocurrency was intended to be anonymous. That is why privacy coins like Monero are to be one of the most important projects of the crypto era.
Just few days ago Youtube flagged and deleted whole host of videos about cryptocurrencies, banning content creators in process. It's not clear whether this was coordinated attack or ML algorithms that suddenly decided to include crypto in list of illicit goods, but implications are clear: the less there is information about how to use crypto responsibly, the harder it is for new people to get aboard. Considering that cryptocurrency's value often tied to the network effect (any network boosts it's value and robustness with user increase), that is a direct attack on ability of cryptocurrency to be widely adopted.
Last ATH in Bitcoin price strangely coincides with introduction of Bitcoin futures. It does not mean that the bubble of 2017 could grow indefinitely - it would pop one way or the other. Cryptospace wasn't mature enough at that time. But adding way to sell BTC without actually having it was key component of why last two years price was in the bear market. Moreover, since then Bitcoin has a tendency for a price drop as CME futures expire. On regular markets it's called market manipulation and is quite illegal.
... or absence of them. If a business would like to adopt crypto as it's payment method, it's often can't do that because there are no guidelines of how it should report it. And some countries prohibit purchase or use of cryptocurrencies entirely. All this to protect their citizens from becoming victims to criminal activities, obviously.
"First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you..."
Now it's the fighting part. Old and ineffective system controlled by few tries to prevent many from using technology that is superior in every way. And one might fall in gloom - after all, what can a regular person do against the will of the powerful?
Buy Bitcoin. Do it through decentralized exchange like Bisq or Paxful. Give it as a Christmas present to your mom or children. You will find what to do with it later. Spread the word among friends and family. Cryptocurrency is what will save many when the Everything-Bubble collapses. And, if you will, tip a content creator you liked.
BTC - 1GeR9jiXvzLTa89j1FND6oYFSKYL1Drd8f
ETH (ERC20) - 0x0e0864e0FEad51EEd69973902956b1B8D50f46a1
Monero - 4Anwq1Aw1WCD29opVr9fcW161EafWPEJDHcjuiasxUuLfqj9CJBJJot3Uwq8GZrzvmFecraLdfjwGL93z7yJ5Y9KE3utnqv