This post is not about Bitcoin’s disastrous effects on the environment or its huge energy use. This post is about a far greater moral question as you’ll find out soon.
I am not going to talk here about the evils of pyramid schemes or that Bitcoin has been taken over by groups of corrupt and toxic people. No, I’ll not do that here. I have discussed those matters in my earlier posts. Here, I will discuss Bitcoin as a hypothetically valid currency and an asset.
To a lot of people, money and wealth is everything. A few of them use crime or unfair means, but most of them use legal and ethical means to try to achieve their wealth goals. However, the fact remains that such people treat wealth as their only or at least ultimate goal in life.
Then, there are other people, who believe that ethics and morality in wealth generation are just as important. They will try to avoid doing things that seem unethical to them. Ethics can be subjective, but we, as humans, generally agree on certain ethical standards. Eating meat can be a personal ethical question and people may agree or disagree on that. But no reasonable person disagrees that cruelty to animals is unethical.
Bitcoin’s Biggest Flaw
Bitcoin tries to create an asset/currency that will appreciate in value as time passes. If you only cared about becoming richer as time goes, you’ll find this very attractive, wouldn’t you? However, have you ever thought how dangerous an idea that is for overall happiness and well-being of the society?
In its appreciation speed, Bitcoin is far worse (or better as Bitcoiners would say) than real estate, as currency is even more fundamental to our lives and especially to the working class. Bitcoin has appreciated at an average rate of 200% in its first 10 years of existence. The money-only people and Bitcoiners applaud how great an asset it is. What is more disturbing is the fact that the majority of Bitcoin supporters are younger people who cannot stop complaining about the forever appreciating prices of real estate.
If Bitcoin is a currency or even a store of value and its price appreciates exponentially, and that is by design, it would mean that Bitcoin imposes a punishment on late comers. And that punishment is not linear. That punishment increases in its severity exponentially.
Just think about that for a second. Bitcoin imposes an exponentially growing time tax on future workers. To Bitcoin, an hour of work done today is far more valuable than an hour of similar work done 5 years later.
Will this not create an age based wealth gap far worse than the generational wealth gap created by forever appreciating real estate, or to some degree, stock prices?
Do you not think that the rising rents and housing prices are too unfair to the younger people? Someone worked 2 years and bought a house a couple of decades ago and now you have do the same work for 40 years to buy that house. Almost everyone who does not own property (i.e. the majority of the young people under 35) believe that the society and the older generation have done them injustice by “hoarding” the properties. If the same young people tell us that an asset they are trying to “hoard” is a godsend and a virtue, will you not treat that as hypocrisy?
I am really amazed at the intellectuals in the Bitcoin community who conveniently ignore the above fundamental flaw. Basically they say, the previous generation screwed us, let’s try something bigger to screw the next generation even more.
Do you think that is moral? Do you think such level of injustice on future workers is sustainable? Do you think that is even possible? If Bitcoin becomes the future of currency, will it not be a huge injustice to the late comers? To the kids who are now 10 or those who are yet to be born? To the people who are not buying it yet? Will they have to work 100 years to buy from you what you earned in a month or even a day. Is that moral to you?
Luckily, Bitcoin cannot succeed. But if you think about the moral hazard it presents, you’ll actually try to stop this disease and this idea from spreading further as I am doing.
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