My thesis on crypto has been effectively unchanged since early 2017. Consider this a summary of my "Why?" 👇
The international financial system, at virtually all levels, is structurally unsound and unsustainable.
This is primarily the result of how we approach money and banking. The highly centralized bank-debt structure of money; the way money is so inequitably issued and distributed; the astonishing gap between financial flows and ecological flows.
Soundness and sustainability are strongly associated with localism - with greater self-sufficiency in communities, with smaller radius supply chains, with more democratic decision making and ownership.
There have always been more localist alternatives: mutual credit systems and credit unions, complementary currencies, time banks, lending circles, mutual aid, etc., but historically, they've struggled to scale.
Scaling a financial system is a matter of scaling trust across communities. Money is a vehicle for, and reflection of, this process (the medium is the message!)
Blockchains and cryptocurrencies provide the most credible foundation yet for attacking this problem, of formulating and scaling new money systems.
That is to say, money is the killer app.
Our goal with this technology must be to evolve a more sound and sustainable international financial regime that bridges the gap from local to global money and back.
We are in the very early days of this revolution. We're working our way from simple, global cryptocurrencies to more application specific and local ones. We don't quite know what this should look like yet, but here's a few thoughts:
Bitcoin is the definitive store of value of the 21st century. It will either break completely or vault above $100k/BTC, if not much, much higher.
Ethereum is a scam. Just kidding. Ethereum is a materially transformative technology that has unleashed invaluable experimentation in political economics.
While much of it today quacks like a casino scam, mechanisms being pioneered on Ethereum will revolutionize financial, economic, and political institutions. DeFi is squaring the Impossible Trinity.
Cosmos makes Ethereum's transformative tech more accessible through interoperable sovereignty. It provides the philosophy and tools for building, operating, and interoperating more local financial infrastructure.
Localism is necessary for both technical and social scalability
There will be many, many blockchains and cryptocurrencies. Thousands that matter over the next 10 years. Millions that matter over the next 50.
They will form an Internet of Blockchains with a dynamic topology. Chains and moneys will be created and destroyed, grown and shrunk, split and merged.
Each chain or cryptocurrency represents a different community and set of values. They provide a mechanism for stakeholders to coordinate via an explicit state machine to scale trust across their communities, and compete with incumbent, centralized powers.
Global stablecoins and CBDCs are an important step in the right direction, but also a distraction. More important will be municipal and neighbourhood currencies, currencies tied more directly to local sustenance, currencies generated by local mutual credit reflecting real trade.
Projects like @grassEcon are most inspiring in that regard, but others like @CirclesUBI and @unionprotocol seem to be on the right track
There remains tremendous potential for R&D in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space. Problems around privacy, scalability, economic design, developer UX, security, correctness, etc.
But as we witness the current proliferation of new blockchain platforms, applications, and bullish sentiment, we must not forget the goal: to evolve a more sound and sustainable international financial regime, to bridge the gap from local to global money and back.

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with Ethan Buchman

Ethan Buchman Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @buchmanster

11 Apr
@cosmos is not a single thing or single network. It's a philosophy of blockchain design that has materialized in major advances, including some of the most useful software artifacts available today to blockchain developers. Let's take a look at what Cosmos has created:
1) Tendermint. Undisputed world champion production consensus engine. No other system comes close (yet!). Lots of production non-BFT systems out there (@etcdio , @hashicorp #consul, etc.) but no BFT system has been battle tested as much as Tendermint.
If you believe there will be more than a couple blockchains out there (see later), then production grade BFT matters. Besides, Tendermint BFT has been massively inspirational and influential in practically every other emerging blockchain consensus, including ETH 2.0 Casper.
Read 23 tweets
11 Oct 18
This @Nouriel fella seems pretty pissed at crypto right now. Feel like it's a good opportunity to live tweet my reading of his testimony to the senate
First, let me note that I composed my hit single "Scam Train" about the crypto space back in 2014. I don't know what Nouriel was up to then, but I'm gonna stake my claim. Here's a later recording:
Ok, so testimony starts with credentials. Nouriel is a smart dude, Harvard, Yale, NYU, predicted the financial crisis. Seminal stuff.
Read 35 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!