Here's part n of our endless saga, aptly titled "The People Know Shit" or alternatively "Nothing's Dumber Than The Voice In The Crowd".
What's anon talking about ? Why, the Berkshire bet, of course.
Which, on one hand, has attracted exactly jack shit in "publicity". If you review the collected works of everyone, from soi dissant Mainstream Media to the last "social" basement on the topic of Bitcoin, you will find every single stupidity, irrelevancy or idiocy that ever happened, might have happened, was announced as definitely happening but then never occured. In triplicate. In quadruplicate. In infinityplicate.
Everything about a minor player in USD paymentsi graciously contributing a coupla hundred BTC's worth (over three years! in dollars!) so that ESPN Events allows them to pretend like they own a game ; everything about some flavour of the month scammer making whatever statements, retractions, corrections, plea bargains, threats, promises, entreaties and whatnot ; everything about impact thrice removed and possibilities entirely theoretical, about the author's own banal feelings and stunted thoughts (whole lot of these, actually), about imaginations, delusions, aspirations, implications - about absolutely everything and absolutely anything "having to do with Bitcoin" except not actually in any sense related at all.
The one thing omitted ? Why, the most important thing that happened this year in Bitcoin : some 30something actual entrepreneurii actually challenged fiat's most famous old hand. And then that most famous old hand had to suffer the humiliation & indignity of pretending like no shorts could be found for his birthday partyiii. Because anything but the old, dying wolf having to confront the young, independent wolf face to face. Anything but that carnage, oh please!
And then, it looks like the young'un is going to lose! Think about this for a minute, would you ? A kid challenged the emperor. And then the kid put something like a million bucks on the table. How many kids do you know that can do that ? With their own money! And now the kid looks like he's gonna lose. And this isn't a story ?
Of course it's a story. It's a great story, and it's being told far and wide, but it's not publicity. The people doing the publicity aren't picking it up, for the obvious reason. I'm not paying them to do it, for one. (Oh, what, you think the stuff you read in the news is there because it's news ? Nigga, puhleaze. If you're not paying you're the thing being sold.) It doesn't fit their agenda, for another. ("If you built a business it's not your business", remember ? They don't exactly want independent rich people. The sort of guys that made themselves and if it comes to it may actually change the world, god forbid! They'd much rather push a different angle.)
So... no publicity. Plenty of word of mouth, yes, and everyone with a clue knows about it, yes, but publicity is exactly the opposite of this. Publicity is getting everyone without a clue to know about it, while the people with a clue studiously or otherwise ignore it. We couldn't be in more different worlds.
But leave "great publicity" aside, let's move on to nobody's going to bet against it. Really ? My thousand BTC goes on the Yes side together with a hundred and some BTC. The No side ? Eh, about five times that. "Nobody"'s getting pretty thick, isn't it ? I guess what was obvious in March is the opposite of what's obvious in December, but that's okay : the crowd has meanwhile been replaced. What's the half life of sheep, two seasons ?
So not that much wisdom in the crowd after all, huh. Not exactly the font of all knowledge, not really worth the worship it's getting these days. Yet all the while, as experts opine and crowds know and publications publicize and so on and so forth... I'm doing my own thing.
To be honest, I'm quite pleased with this arrangement. Name another place on Earth where you can lay out a million dollar bet and have it covered five to one. Tall order even for Vegas, isn't it. But wait! There's more! All cash. That's right : if I win, I will take home about what, 5.5k * 700 at least... wait a second... four million dollars ? In cash ? That's to say, I will actually take it home, each and last dime of it ? No banks involved whatsoever ? Wow. But wait! Is there even more ? Yes there is! There's even more! Read Bush's lips : tax free. I will pay exactly bupkiss tax on it, irrespective what any government may think. And it can't even be confiscated or anything. Hm...
Obviously, it's not too damned likely I'll win. And that's fine. I don't mind having had the shot at four million in cash, on a bet. When's the last time you had something like that ? When's the last time you knew someone who had something like that ? Not claimed. Actual. Cryptographically provable, actually, but let's not get into details that might require one to use the higher functions.
This, incidentally, is exactly, but exactly how Bitcoin works. Yeah, we might not make it out on the other end of it. Sure, sure. Neither will you. Nobody makes it out the other end. Meanwhile, the shot, the shot... who do you know who can take his four million home ? Put it in his pocket, take it home. Cross any border. Pay, for anything. Anything whatsoever. Who do you know that doesn't need a bank ? Who do you know that's completely immune to taxation, confiscation, inflation and the rest of the endless list of government-sponsored theft ? How many people do you know that "fuck you, I do what I want" ? Outside of cartoon characters, I mean ?
There's a lot "the people" don't know. There's a lot the crowd's never experienced. Frankly, I wouldn't want it any other way.———
- As to Bitcoin relevance : Bitpay has about as much to do with Bitcoin as Cuisinart has to do with groceries. So you use mixers and shit in your kitchen, where the groceries go ? Bravo! So you do things with dollars at the periphery of Bitcoin via Bitpay ? Bravo! 'Bout same thing, seriously.
As to size : MPEx December was ~600 BTC. Bitpay December disappointed (and in typical BS fashion, they suddenly forgot all the grand promises and authoritative declarations as to the future made prior - don't expect a "we said we were going to X but we failed" blogpost from the sort of hype-and-hope venue, it's contrary to the "business model"). In any case there's not a coupla million bucks free and clear from the 0ish% they get to keep from the receipts for that month.
So... yeah. A minor player at the periphery of Bitcoin. [↩]
- There's a difference between men who own their own money and boys who hang around the VC trough. Guess which are the entrepreneurs and who are the Mary Sues ? [↩]
- Seinfeld has a pretty decent bit on how the Berkshire stockholder meetings go :
To me, the thing about birthday parties is that the first birthday party you have and the last birthday party you have are actually quite similar. You know, you just kinda sit there...you're the least excited person at the party. You don't even really realize that there is a party. You don't know what's goin' on. Both birthday parties, people have to kinda help you blow out the candles, you can't do it...you don't even know why you're doing it. What is this ritual? What is going on? It's also the only two birthday parties where other people have to gather your friends together for you. Sometimes they're not even your friends. They make the judgement. They bring 'em in, they sit 'em down, and they tell you - 'these are your friends! Tell them thank you for coming to my birthday party.'