George, what happened to make you switch from being a part of Bitcoin ABC to now openly criticizing Bitcoin ABC?”
The short answer is that Amaury Séchet, the owner of Bitcoin ABC, changed his position suddenly and without public warning and I, along with everyone else in Bitcoin Cash, was forced to adjust my stance.
As I have stated, I am for stability and growth in Bitcoin Cash. I want to build on Bitcoin Cash. I will not be a part of destroying it. I consider Amaury’s sudden change, and particularly his method of introducing the change, to be a declaration of war on Bitcoin Cash. I don’t see much point in trying to build on an altcoin ranked #57 on CoinMarketCap.
And while many people are tribal, and will stick with their tribe almost no matter what, I am not. I aim to be focused on goals, principles and my own self-interest.
I have always been fascinated with free enterprise and individual liberty. In 1991, a friend suggested I read “The Fountainhead” by Ayn Rand, saying the novel was totally for me. It was. I have read all of her works now and multiple times. Ayn Rand’s words are frequently a great inspiration to me.
In 2007, I became active as a libertarian doing both online and in-real-life activism. In 2010, I was assaulted by US marshals for videotaping activists exercising free speech in front of a US courthouse and faced 8 years in federal prison on trumped-up charges. In 2011, I took on the TSA with teammates on Opt Out Day and organized protests at 28 US airports. Whoopi Goldberg called me a terrorist on national TV. CNN said I was intriguing. Also in 2011, I ran an online conference where there was a talk or two about Bitcoin, and procured my first bitcoin.
In 2015, I resolved to do everything within my power to realize a voluntary world within 50 years. As a voluntaryist and market anarchist, admittedly with some mutualist tendencies, a fully voluntary world is my ultimate goal.
During 2018-2019, it was because of this resolution that I built a team of 80 people across 20 cities, 8 nations and 3 continents to make consistent and meaningful progress towards cryptocurrency mass adoption while operating multiple extremely successful treasury proposals for Dash.
It is my belief that I was the victim of a successful tribalist social attack in Dash because my genuine, transparent and innovative work threatened to expose the shallow scams that others had been and still are perpetrating in Dash. (Some of these attackers followed me to BCH and ankle-bite me every chance they get.)
In October 2019, I made the decision that, despite demonstrably retaining the support of 67% of voting masternode operators, Dash was beyond hope and was only holding me back.
Until 2015/2016, I was closely watching the Bitcoin scaling debate. It became extremely frustrating for me that the scaling forces were unable to make progress and simultaneously did not fork. I stopped paying attention around the end of this time period and decided to focus more on my novel writing and on STEEM.
In November of 2019, I declared my intention to bring my adoption work to Bitcoin Cash. Most of the Dash Latam team I had built was interested in coming with me. During December of 2019, I built a business plan, which I then submitted to the Bitcoin Cash Ecosystem Fund in early January of 2020. I participated in discussions about working for an ecosystem business but they did not pan out.
At the end of January 2020, we, now the BCH Latam team, launched a crowdfunding token sale and raised about 41 BCH. You can read about our work in our Jul 2020 report.
Around this same time, Jiang Zhuoer of BTC.TOP proposed IFPv1 (version 1 of the Infrastructure Funding Plan). I commented on his proposal that I considered it innovative, which I still do if done properly. I witnessed the conflict in the community and I wanted to, first, understand what was happening and, second, play a role in helping the community reach consensus.
Around this time, I filled out a form to get information on becoming a Bitcoin Unlimited member. I believe I have yet to receive a response. I joined the #NOTAX Telegram group in order to understand that side’s position, and I was blocked from the group. I publicly stated that my position was neutral and that the miners should decide.
On 18 Feb 2020, I offered my consulting and fundraising services to the ecosystem. Amaury Séchet accepted this offer, an act which I will always respect and appreciate. I went to work for him to raise funds for Bitcoin ABC, build new/better business relationships for Bitcoin ABC and improve Bitcoin ABC’s public communications.
I believe I did a very professional job of this. See fund.bitcoinabc.org, blog.bitcoinabc.org, the Bitcoin ABC YouTube channel and 2020.bitcoincash.org for starters. Much of my work was, and will remain due to confidentiality agreement, private and confidential.
Amaury and I parted ways amicably as of 1 Aug 2020. As I have said, I would support an IFP that has widespread support, that is handled professionally and that has consensus built for it in such a way as to unify, not divide, the Bitcoin Cash ecosystem.
I want to build on a top-5 coin. I want to onboard hundreds of millions, even billions, of people to a coin that I can represent with pride, knowing I am onboarding people to something true, honest and that is poised for growth. It does not serve me to keep forking, to have constant infighting, to have newly onboarded people receive information that confuses them for which they have no context and which causes them to become discouraged and leave. Splitting Bitcoin Cash does not serve my interests.
On 6 Aug 2020, Amaury announced his new 8% coinbase rule (IFPv4) in a very divisive manner. He dropped it on the ecosystem with zero notice, after months of pursuing voluntary fundraising — and enjoying some success with it — and he said there would be no public debate.
I may like Amaury as a person. I may find the software work of Bitcoin ABC to be valuable. I may respect and even admire that Amaury is the person who finally forked from Core after I had lost hope of anyone doing it. But, after 3 weeks of research, thought and discussions with many BCH builders, I have reached the conclusion that what he is doing here is vile, callous, clumsy, ultimately destructive of value and directly opposed to my own self-interest.
I will work with others constructively as a peer or partner. I will humbly provide service. I will stoop, do manual labor, work 120 hours per week and take risks doing the hard but essential work others hesitate to take on. But I will not sacrifice myself for anyone.
My principles dictate that I oppose his actions and that is what I am doing. I am doing it in the hopes it will bring certainty to the ecosystem more rapidly so that we can overcome this bump in the road and move on — and so I can move on and apply my full attention to building mass adoption once again.
Don’t trust me. I don’t seek your trust. You have no need to trust me. Trust is required to form follow-the-leader tribes and groupthink collectives. Tribes require agreement whether you actually agree or not. I don’t want to be a part of tribes or groupthink collectives.
I aim to remain independent. I am not part of Team ABC anymore, nor am I part of Team BCHN. That said, I respect most individuals in both of those teams, even those with whom I have, or even still have, disagreements. And I respect almost everyone else who is building on Bitcoin Cash that I am aware of.
You will sometimes disagree with me and you will sometimes agree with me. That is fine and normal. Evaluate my actions and statements as you see fit and draw your own conclusions. Use your mind, educate yourself and do your own research through primary source materials.
My goal is to remain honest, transparent, direct and to achieve my goals as stated above. If you see synergy between your goals and mine, let’s talk.
I do not believe I have crossed any ethical lines, neither transgressing against the BCH ecosystem nor against Amaury or Bitcoin ABC. I don’t believe that I ultimately “enabled” Amaury to any significant degree because my contributions were in support of voluntary funding, consensus-building and transparent communication. It was his decision to abandon those principles, not mine.
Amaury changed course. Not me.
If someone disagrees, state your case, including an estimate of damages, and I will respond. I stand behind my words and actions. I accept responsibility for them. I am open to arbitrating any disputes against me that merit it and that can not be resolved by mutual agreement.
I aim to continue working on the following projects and others. I hope that we can have complete certainty as soon as possible on what will happen on 15 Nov 2020 with the Bitcoin Cash network upgrade so I can once again put my full energy into building on Bitcoin Cash
multiple new web app / SLP token projects I am conceptualizing (while refreshing my webdev skills)
freelance digital marketing, business development and public relations work.
I might also write another novel
My course is a straight line based on my principles and goals. I remained true to my principles when I joined Dash, and when I left. I remained true when I joined Bitcoin ABC, and when I left.
I aim to continue this course of action indefinitely and play a role in achieving a voluntary world by 2064, be it through cryptocurrency (ideally Bitcoin Cash), be it through novels, be it through videos, be it through teaching and mentoring, or some other course of action I have yet to identify.