The Problem With Gondolas? Why Everyone Has An Opinion On Mt. Gox

Journalist:
March 1, 2014

So Senator Manchin has a list of names that he wants to ban Bitcoins, I hope his intentions are well thought out and that this is simply not just someone who doesn’t want to the last to benefit from some publicity on the back of the shuttering up of Mt Gox.

“I am most concerned that as Bitcoin is inevitably banned in other countries, Americans will be left holding the bag on a valueless currency.”

For a more in depth looks at Senator Manchin’s Bitcoin Ban Letter, read articles from CCN by Caleb Chen and Kyle Torpey.

Why is it that politicians feel the need to let their opinions be known?  What can they learn from one King Canute?

The problem with taking up a torch:

Perhaps before politicians decide to take up a burning torch they would be advised to become familiar with the issues involved. Bitcoin cannot, in fact, be banned, as a matter of fact when we look at the performance of cryptocurrencies in general; we will see that there will be little support for any such proposal even if it were possible. A proposal to ban the internet would be as practical.

Luddites vote too:

There are still many people out there who know little about computers and much less about cryptocurrencies, assuming that a sizable proportion of this group will vote, there is a potential return to politicians from taking an anti Bitcoin stance. That does make, however, for an ill informed group which is highly susceptible to both media and political manipulation.

The Gondola Conundrum:                              

There was a well known story from Ireland about a proposal before the local council to place gondolas on a well known lake in an area dependent on tourism. Everyone was positive as the gondolas had the potential to create a certain level of employment as well as improving tourism income. Towards the end of an extremely positive, unusually positive, in fact, meeting, one of the counsellors spoke and informed the group that he had, as a younger man had taken a great interest in Gondolas and had read widely on the subject. He asked the important question that he felt the other members had failed to address. That although gondolas would be beautiful during the long summers, and a great benefit to the area, who would feed them in the winter?

The banning of Bitcoins is, at this stage, impossible. What would be achieved is at best a banning of direct transactions on American soil. People would still earn and spend cryptocurrencies and volume of trade will continue to grow. It will simply grow in the black economy and in foreign economies.

Banning tidal flooding:

Senator Manchin is not unlike King Canute. Image courtesy of indexoncensorship

The recent flooding throughout areas of the world was exacerbated by high tidal swells. Perhaps an outright ban on coastal tides would make sense. This could be achieved through an Act of Congress. Tides are generally accepted to be somewhat unnecessary in any event. Perhaps the studies undertaken in the U.K by the late King Canute*, who carried out some experiments in this area, should be taken into account… or perhaps someone should just publish a statement, “run it up the flagpole”, so to speak… and hope that someone might just salute.

*King Canute, as pictured above, is historically ridiculed for his ridiculous bans… on flooding.

Last modified (UTC): March 1, 2014 19:09

Tags: Bitcoin
PJ Delaney @P.J. Delaney@delboyir

Masters in Public Administration, Bachelors in Mgt., I live in Ireland, I have a bit of a background in Economics and lots of opinions on everything else.