With all the back and forth on cryptocurrency, I thought it would be worthwhile to provide thoughts from the perspective of a science fiction author.
My prediction: Cryptocurrency is the platform that will enable financial wealth throughout the galaxy and can be tied to a host nation or planetary system.
The Good Aspects of Cryptocurrency
- It represents two of the four elements of national power (Military, Diplomacy, Economic, and Information).
- The Economic element should be self-explanatory but the information element creates a giant leap for harnessing a global wealth at the national level. So important is information in the digital age, that forty years ago Orson Scott Card predicted in his book “Speaker for the Dead” that the only requirement to control colonies throughout the galaxy would be the ability to control their information.
- Cryptocurrency doesn’t weigh anything. To use a fiat currency on a Moon or Mars colony would also mean expensive transport costs. International participants would have to pay conversion fees of their own currency, and then the conversion companies would have to transport the non-standard currency back to earth. Digital currency is weightless and global – no conversion, no transport, no problems.
The Not so Good Aspects of Cryptocurrency
- The Bible predicts it and this just might mean the end is near(ing). Revelation 13:16-17 says: “Also it [the beast that exercises authority over the Earth] causes all, both small and great, both rich and poor, both free and slave, to be marked on the right hand or the forehead, so that no one can buy or sell unless he has the mark, that is, the name of the beast or the number of its name.” If a cryptocurrency (Bitcoin or Ethereum for example) becomes a global standard and becomes controlled by one entity… it could spell the end of the age.
- Digital information is not as secure. I’ve read the arguments on encryption and private wallets, but digital information is still subject to theft – and this is a big problem because we are talking about theft affecting millions of users versus street robbery in fiat currency. In fact, there have already been multiple hacks of wallets and exchanges. At least you can fight off a mugger with fiat currency, right?
One counter-point (from a soldier…me):
Some people recently have attacked cryptocurrency because it is arbitrary in value. Unlike gold, cryptocurrency isn’t tangible and will not maintain any long-term worth. My issue with this isn’t because I don’t like gold. I love gold. It is shiny and my wife kisses me whenever I offer her something made of gold.
My issue is that gold is also arbitrary in value. Keep in mind I’m a soldier… but if I want gold I can’t use gold to take it. I need guns made of steel. Bullets made of lead and copper. If I want food in a post-apocalyptic world, I won’t be using gold to get food, I’ll be using bullets. I can’t mine gold with gold, I need to mine gold with steel, or iron, or even wood. If I want water, I won’t be using gold to get it. If I need heat, I won’t be using gold to generate it. Gold has an assigned value and to be honest, I suggest investing in lead and copper to protect your assets instead of Gold. BUT… since we have assigned gold a value, I see no reason to not afford the same to any cryptocurrency.
I own cryptocurrency. Maybe Brokk should too…