Before the U.S. gets too far behind the curve on this important topic, I urge the regulators to work together, act quickly, and prohibit this dangerous currency from harming hard-working Americans.
– Senator Joe Manchin, in his letter calling for a ban on Bitcoin
Whenever you hear a politician say he or she wants to do something to “protect hard-working Americans,” you know this person is so full of shit that whatever proposal being peddled should be treated with extreme skepticism. It’s incredible to me that this sort of infantile and transparently superficial language actually still works on people, but apparently it does.
Seemingly frustrated that the cessation of actives at Mt. Gox hasn’t destroyed Bitcoin, Senator Joe Manchin III is taking matters into his own hands. You know, for your own good. His solution is to “ban” Bitcoin, and he outlined his rationale (if we can call it that) in a fear ridden, garbled letter to a diverse group of power players in D.C., which include Treasury Secretary Jack Lew and Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen.
Let’s examine some of the low points in this incredibly desperate and pathetic letter. Mr. Manchin III writes:
By way of background, Bitcoin is a crypto-currency that has gained notoriety in recent months due to its rising exchange value and relation to illegal transactions.
Um, no not really. It has gained notoriety recently for being accepted at major retailers such as Overstock.com and the fact that its largest exchange has collapsed.
Lie number 1.
Secondly, no currency is more utilized for money laundering than the U.S. dollar and our banking system that actively supports it. If the government was really so concerned about such behavior why did HSBC get off the hook for laundering billions on behalf of Mexican drug cartels with a mere slap on the wrist?
Lie number 2.
That is why more than a handful of countries, and their banking systems, have cautioned against the use of Bitcoin. Indeed, it has been banned in two different countries—Thailand and China—and South Korea stated that it will not recognize Bitcoin as a legitimate currency.
Since when are we taking cues from Thailand (a country where you get thrown in jail for insulting the king), or China, a country that censors huge swaths of the internet?
Plus China didn’t ban Bitcoin, and South Korea was making significant BTC investments last I checked.
Lie number 3.
I am most concerned that as Bitcoin is inevitably banned in other countries, Americans will be left holding the bag on a valueless currency.
Well many Americans, including people I know, have likely lost significant BTC at Mt. Gox. Not a single one is calling for a ban on Bitcoin. So perhaps we should listen to the individuals actually affected, rather than some self-righteous political hack.
Lie number 4.
Look we all know what is actually happening here. You are doing your best to protect the parasitic legacy financial system that has done more harm to the U.S. economy than Bitcoin ever could. You are just the latest in a long list of historical opportunists looking to scapegoat ideas that don’t fit into a corrupt status quo you depend on.
Advocating the ban of revolutionary technology is no different from Nazis burning books. We all know what happens next.
His full letter can be found here.
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