Saturday, December 14, 2013

'Bitcoin Will No Longer Be the Anonymous Tool of Anarchists'

By Andrew Moran

What was once considered the monetary tool for anarchists due to its anonymity and fight against fiat currency will soon become just another regulated payment system that will lose its prominence in the world of alternative currencies.
First, please allow me to confirm that I support the ultimate goal of a lot of bitcoiners: a legitimate alternative(s) to the failed experiment of fiat money. As a libertarian and a student of the Austrian School of Economics, I am fully in favor of competing currencies in the free market; gold and silver, bitcoin and litecoin. Anything is better than the greenback or the euro.
Therefore, to all the bitcoiners who will ultimately disagree with my conclusion, please do not bombard me with anger, rage, vitriol and even death threats. Now, onto the point of this piece, which I concede will not gain the favor of bitcoin owners, investors and miners.
Over the past month, I have reported and opined extensively on bitcoin for a handful of publications – I have also been following the digital currency regularly since about 2010 when I first heard about it through the Ridley Report. One aspect that is continually promoted is that the cryptocurrency is anonymous and therefore a perfect tool for those who are described as monetary anarchists.
Perhaps at first it was, but with growing acceptance among both the marketplace and even governments around the world, it shall no longer be. Whether it’s a pump and dump scheme (Robert Wenzel) or a Ponzi scheme (Gary North) is a different story, but the bitcoin is losing one of its most popular characteristics: anonymity.

Read the rest here


  1. Bitcoin is the ultimate "nudge," you fools. All while central banks are loading up on gold before Basel 3, at fire sale prices. Swiss refiners cannot source, and tools like Jeff Christian claim there is no demands.



  2. if it is not private, can;t we recover all those BTC recently stolen from an exchange? I mean the rightful owners had a record of every BTC address before the theft, and the block chain has every transaction from those addresses to their new owner's addresses. Just undo the theft - which is according to you public.

  3. Before the posts claiming that anonymity is possible if one simply masters the random-375-charachter password generator, I will suggest that the week link is the humans- regardless of one's view of the invincibility (or lack thereof) of the algorithm.

    Vendors and banks will be regulated to be above board, and most will comply. Users will be threatened with money laundering, tax-evasion, and the like. The users don't even have to be known to the state (or even real). However, some actual users will be caught violating laws that were not even written at the time of the transaction; they will be caught because they did not properly master the use of the random-375-charachter password generator.

    "Why didn't you report your gain on trades to the IRS?" or "Didn't you know that you had to file an FBAR on that account?"

    Perp walk a few such people (or dupes or actors) and watch the market for bitcoin dry up.

    1. Hi BM,

      Outside of its potential for secrecy, BTC other advantage is its security from seizure and its portability across borders. Even if the government knows your transaction history, they can't take your properly secured bitcoins. (Yes they can arrest you until you give them up but that's not the same)

      So if you owe the IT'S money they can take your bank account but not your bitcoins.

      Also, I wonder if BTC will find use in the criminal world. Meaning the drug world and professional money launderers. They will not be impressed with a frog march. So I'm curious if the underworld might Actually create a bitcoin infrastructure that the rest of us can someday use.

      Stranger things have happened.

      But bitcoin I mean any crypto currency perhaps not yet invented.

    2. You mean in the drug world where Silk Road was such a success?

    3. Oh I'm sorry. Did the government eliminate the drug trade while I wasn't paying attention?

    4. What an idiotic statement. The government can't seize my cash, gold, or silver if they don't know where it is. So how is shitcoins better than any of those which are accepted everywhere?? Hardly anyone even knows what shitcoins are. And the worst part is if they are stolen they are gone forever.

    5. "If they don't know where it is" is kind of hopeful in this age of total surveillance.

      Whether bitcoin is anonymous or not, whether it will be worth anything or not all remain to he seen. That it offers protection against government confiscation has already been shown. They haven't gotten Ross Ubricht's wallet yet. Don't think he would have faired as well with 'hidden' cash or gold.

      PS are you not able to have a debate without sounding like a self absorbed prick?

    6. so which is it? what am I debating? because your saying there is anonymity and Peak Oil says there isn't. I have never heard so much disagreement between proponents of shitcoins (and yes, I call them that because it seems to infuriate pro-bitcoin people.) I'll take my chances hiding physical gold and silver rather than have a made-up computer blip floating somewhere in cyber space. that can be stolen, may or may not be traced depending on who you talk to, and is something (well, actually nothing) that no one knows what it is or uses it. I can show a gold coin to a child and he can identify what it is. I don't even need to lug my laptop or phone around to do that. as for saying that my hidden cash or gold is more likely to be confiscated then shitcoins is absolutely assinine. like I've been saying, we'll see. shitcoins will soon be worth just that...shit!

  4. Amazing

    the post screams complete ignorance of bitcoin (anonymity has never been claimed as anything to do with its design)

    the only things more ignorant than the post are the comments

    this site therefore is hosted by fools for fools to read


    1. The intent behind the design is irrelevant. If I have read once, I have read a thousand times comments by dreamers who have written some version of "now we can transact with complete privacy from the government" and "this is our chance to end the Fed." Have you been asleep during these flights of fancy?

      How many times have you replied to these naive little children that they are "ignorant" or "fools"? Because I don't recall seeing you at any of those occasions.

      For the possibility of other uses of bitcoin (absent anonymity and destroying the primarily tool of the elite), have a field day. For such individuals, wild price swings seem to be the primarily concern (well, that and no evidence hence no courts for dispute resolution).