Lots and lots of cheering for anti-money laundering (AML) and know-your-customer (KYC) regulations as they are perceived as helping bitcoin and crypto to achieve wider adoption. While this may be true in one sense, in another, bowing to these regulations unthinkingly and giving up on permissionless, peer-to-peer exchange of electronic cash is suiciding bitcoins' #1 value proposition: economic freedom.
While appeal to tradition is a logical fallacy, noting the bitcoin whitepaper's description of an electronic cash that doesn't require a financial institution, and comparing that to what many perceive crypto to be today, is alarming.
I scroll through Tiktok videos of "crypto influencers" roaring about how systematized state clampdowns on people's economic freedom will ultimately make governments and mega-corporations more comfortable with crypto, encouraging adoption. I wonder if they think about the small businesses scared away from cryptocurrencies by vague and ominously threatening tax regimes creating endless new and nebulous laws. Wonder if they think about all the crypto ATMs that have been ripped out of small shops due to imposed licensing rackets.
Don't get me wrong. I'm glad to ride the wave of these people's dumb money as they pour it into the market where possible, for the sake of my own survival. Not to take advantage of anyone, but for those that know the true value proposition of crypto and still choose to sell out the core philosophy of economic freedom, yes, please, go ahead and pump up the prices.
But when your digital assets are so heavily surveilled and regulated that you can no longer trade them privately at all, or use them to make small purchases at the corner shop down the way, and you can go to jail for showing a pal how crypto works in an "unregulated transaction" at the local bar where they trade you some fiat for crypto, please do not come whining about it to me.
If you think this is a joke, just hit your preferred search engine and check out the recent infrastructure bill that was approved by the U.S. senate. Check out the European Central Bank's aim to make private bitcoin transactions illegal.
This whole thing started for freedom, and that's what creates value and makes prices boom in sustained fashion. Conversely, getting greedy and trying to milk that freedom by capturing it in violence-based regulations will only starve it until there is nothing left.
Get out there now and spend that shit. Save that shit. Don't wait for permission for some stranger to take care of yourself and your finances. There's no problem with private entities deciding how they would like to regulate things, and vetting clients. There's a big problem with the state leveraging systematic, blanket violence against any and all peaceful individuals who simply wish to exercise freedom of choice in their money.
Long live bitcoin cash! Peer-to-peer, permissionless, electronic cash.