A lot of people who are into cryptocurrencies will see this FinCen leak as vindication and proof that banks are money launderers.

But, this will be used against cryptocurrencies...

See the correct analysis of this news is that AML/CTF and KYC don't work. They will never work because they try to control the *tool* not the *criminal act*. It's not the money that is illicit, it's the use of that money to commit crimes.

I've talked about this extensively. Not only is the use of money as a crime-control mechanism ineffective, it has terrible consequences that increase poverty for billions by creating economic exclusion. So it's not just useless, it is "Worse than Useless"

"Worse than Useless" is the title of a talk I gave about this topic. For the illusion of unatainable security and crime fighting we get two obvious and unavoidable results: billions cut out of the financial system and enormous corrupting power given to regulators and bankers.

But despite this obvious truth, nothing is going to change. In fact, this report will be used to *increase* the use of controls and surveillance. In govt if something doesn't work, you do MORE of it. So this will result in stricter AML/CTF rules.

These new rules will also not work. These new rules will also corrupt more bankers, regulators, cops and politicians. These new rules will destroy opportunity for millions more people. But they will offer the comfort of righteous rhetoric against evil while creating more evil

As these new rules are applied, banking will become even harder for poor people, undocumented people and people on the fringes of society. It won't stop criminals from criming. It will stop poor people from rising out of poverty. It will make banks even more competition-proof

These new rules will make government surveillance worse and will erode democratic institutions. They will make it possible for dictators to economically surveil, control, and eventually extinguish any opposition. They will use US surveillance tech to impose financial fascism

Then of course, the need and value of open financial systems based on open, private, and uncensorable cryptocurrencies will increase dramatically. When all the money in the world has been deliberately broken to serve this unachievable goal, the only money that works is crypto

More and more people will need to use cryptocurrency in order to participate in the global economy, because control-currency doesn't work as money. A medium of exchange can't also work as a medium of control. They break money to stop crime, even though it is a futile effort

That makes crypto-currency a systemic threat, not to the economic nature of national money, but to the control and surveillance system of geopolitical money. Math money doesn't play politics, which makes it automatically "rogue" money.

Open and private crypto-currencies won't comply with these regulations, because they CAN'T comply without breaking every feature and capability they have. If some try to comply they will have to compete against gov-crypto and facebook-crypto (they will lose)

Then the war on cash and the war on "illicit" money becomes an all out war on the only money that still works. The free, open, borderless, neutral, immutable, censorship resistant money that crypto-currencies like Bitcoin offer

The only type of money (crypto) that poor, undocumented, oppressed, and controlled populations can use will of course be attacked. But they will not have any choice but to continue to use cryptocurrency. Billions are already unbanked by fiat controls.

This FinCen leak is worthy of our ridicule because it reveals the hypocrisy of those who argue that crypto-currency is for money launderers. Banking *is* money laundering on a massive scale. But the solution is not to tighten controls on money. That won't work

The solution is to stop trying to use money (a tool) to fight crime (human nature). But if you think the hypocrites will back down and adopt sensible systems and laws that enable human trade and economic inclusion, you are wrong. They will double down with even more control
This isn't good news. This is the excuse they will use to double down on surveillance and control. To make money a tool of naked political power. No matter how many billions these measures condemn to poverty.
Watch "Worse than Useless" on Youtube:

Also "Money as a system of control"

Also on the issue of moral responsibility:

"Universal Access to Basic Finance"

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More from @aantonop

10 Aug
This whole "what is ETH supply" thing is a silly gotcha that doesn't make much sense if you understand how Ethereum works. It's no better than the silly gotchas Schiff and Roubini level at bitcoin.

We can do better. Let's look at the details...

First of all a block explorer is a very limited view of any blockchain. These are user-interface tools that abstract important details and translate them for the user's benefit. They each have a point-of-view that is the result of their data collection and analysis methodology
You can easily see how this plays out in Bitcoin too, if you've paid any attention to all the errors in popular blockchain explorers over the years. Take a Bitcoin metric like "current hashrate" and you will find a dozen different answers depending on where you look

Read 22 tweets
15 Jul
It seems like some Twitter API posting service has been compromised and being used to send out fake "giveaway" tweets from popular crypto/blockchain accounts. "CryptoForHealth" is a scam.

No way are all these accounts unprotected by strong passwords and TOTP 2FA
I don't think this is a compromise of Twitter. I think it's another intermediary "social media posting" service that is popular and used by multiple companies. They often have weaker security and limited 2FA options, but full access to the Twitter API granted by the user.
To be clear, no one should be gloating about this and neither am I. No one is immune to attacks and even while I feel I have taken strong precautions to protect my account, I'm watching this with horrified interest, hoping it doesn't happen to me.

Also, fuck "CryptoForHealth"
Read 7 tweets
4 Dec 19
Believing in "meritocracy" is... problematic

If you see a system that delivers 90% dominance (supremacy?) by a 10-20% minority of humans...

a) It is systemic bias (Unfair)
b) meritocracy

If you assume meritocracy is at play, *that means you think supremacy is merited* 😳😬
I can't fathom how people believe in meritocracy when the outcomes are so skewed.

If you therefore reason that a system like that cannot be meritocratic, it is ipso facto unfair.

Then the question is simple: what you gonna do to change that?
I would love to see a meritocratic system. I'm almost 50 years old and have never seen one, not even in the most egalitarian societies.

I see a massively tilted playing field.
Read 9 tweets
3 Nov 19
Apparently, a German person called "Jorg Molt" has been showing a selfie taken with me and telling people that we are friends

This is a LIE. I don't know him at all.

I have heard from others that he claims to be the founder of Bitcoin and has thousands of BTC. A LIE.
If you are a conference organizer, you need to be very skeptical of these claims and avoid putting people like this on stage.
If you are approached by Jorg Molt and told he is my friend, or shown other photos to create fake association, walk away. Then warn others.
Read 6 tweets
20 Jun 19
Just FYI: The ICO, IEO, "influencer marketing", endorsement, "advisor" etc emails and DMs have started flooding in again.

People are offering me (and many others) $25k to $250k for endorsement, review, tweets etc. I say no, many say yes.

SCAMS are coming. Be careful.
I'm now getting 10-15 requests A DAY for "influencer marketing" bullshit.

I block anyone who sends these to me.

When your favorite CT "influencer" starts endorsing or promoting something beware: they're being paid for every tweet.
It's been about a month since this new wave of scammers started up again.

Last time was August-December 2017.

The price dump in crypto made them go away and now they're back.
Read 4 tweets
3 Dec 18
It appears some journalist has "difficulty" understanding Bitcoin mining.
Also, in "journalism" if you write-off a 100bn industry because of a technical "flaw", you first ask a technical expert for comment.

One more obituary on the heap. Credibility went to zero faster than bitcoin's price.
Breaking news: Journalism enters death spiral.
Read 5 tweets

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