For those of us who think free markets should apply to money just as every other commodity, Bitcoin is like an AI-inspired technology out of a sci-fi fantasy novel. But it’s here, it’s real, and it works.
Let me tell you, everything tastes better without Federal Reserve sauce.
It was a private transaction between myself and the restaurant, and no institution, no matter how powerful, could’ve prevented the money transfer without physically restraining me from pressing the send button.
A longtime Bitcoin evangelist Erik Voorhees (@Evoorhees) and member of The Free State Project weigh in with his take on Bitcoin from his political perspective. Excerpts:
“Bitcoin means complete ownership of money both in storage and transfer. Nobody can prevent you from having it. Nobody can prevent you from spending it. Even if one’s home is broken into, or even if the government issues a ‘confiscation order’ (as they did with gold in 1933), one’s Bitcoins are perfectly safe”.
“Every day a more resilient economy is being built, and not at the point of a gun, but voluntarily - not by decree of Bernanke, but by spontaneous, self-interested private order.”
“There is no way to ‘reverse’ a payment. With Bitcoin, reputation and history are everything. If you wouldn’t give cash to a stranger in an alleyway, don’t give Bitcoins to a stranger online”.
“Bitcoin cannot be turned off - it is like a benevolent cancer which, so long as a few hosts survive somewhere in the world, can perpetuate itself and regrow at the speed of information”.
“A prudent person should assume Bitcoin will fail, if for no other reason than that most new things fail. But, there is a very real chance it will succeed”.
BitInstant’s press release announcing their expanded service offering was published by various media today. Excerpts:
“By simplifying this exchange, customers now just visit BitInstant’s website, print out a receipt, and deposit physical cash for the virtual currency at their nearest retail or convenience location. Bitcoins are credited to their account within 30 minutes.”
“Bitcoin enables users to transfer funds instantly to any other Bitcoin account holder in the world. There is no middle-man or controlling entity.”
“Instead of waiting 3-5 business days for a wire transfer across an ocean, Bitcoin transfers are immediate and have zero fees (for the most part). They also prevent merchants from suffering costly chargebacks, or requiring customers to expose personal information.”
[Ediitor’s note: Through a partnership with ZipZap, cash deposits for processing through BitInstant can be accepted in the U.S. and U.S. Territories (e.g., Puerto Rico) at WalMart, 7-11, Moneygram locations (e.g., CVS) and many other locations. Boleto is the payment system for accepting payment from customers in Brazil.]
Bitcoin is not a company nor organization. It is best thought of as a technology protocol, like VoIP or HTTP. [Just as] email lowers the cost of transferring writing across distance, Bitcoin lowers the cost of transferring money across distance.
Bitcoin is increasingly being adopted as a payment method for online commerce because it carries several advantages over traditional payment methods such as credit cards, bank wires, or PayPal. Unlike traditional payment methods, […]
From the consumer side, Bitcoin accounts are not attached to personal identifying information. This means consumers do not need to expose sensitive financial data every time they buy online.
Bitcoin thus offers a far more secure, and far less expensive, way for business to be transacted online.
Typically, Bitcoin makes the most economic sense for online retailers selling in an ecommerce environment (especially if they have international customers or have a high chargeback risk, which Bitcoin solves).
With a Bitcoin payment, there is no 3% fee to these processing companies, and this savings goes directly to the bottom line of the merchant. Consider also that Bitcoin removes all chargeback risk and payment reversal liability from the merchant.
There is no reason that a digital payment of US dollars from one country to another should take a matter of days, when a digital email is sent and received in a seco-nd. Bitcoin makes money as efficient as email.
Video: Bitcoin Symposium at NH Liberty Forum
A discussion on Bitcoin at the 2013 New Hampshire LIberty Forum, an annual gathering of voluntaryists and Libertarians, included panelists Erik Voorhees (@ErikVoorhees), Roger Ver (@RogerKVer) and Charlie Shrem (@CharlieShrem). There are 8-separate videos with each under 10 minutes in length:
It was at that forum that Jeffrey Tucker (@JeffreyATucker), publisher and executive editor of Laissez-Faire Books, used for the first time the Bitcoin ATM. He later featured that ATM in his post Top Alternatives to Paper Money.
Audio: Erik Voorhees on the Peter Schiff Show
The interview gives a general overview of Bitcoin, from a libertarian perspective, and concludes with Q&A with calls from the show’s listeners.
Runtime: 31 minutes.