[Chugalug] More on Bitcoin:

Stephen Kraus ub3ratl4sf00 at gmail.com
Thu Aug 22 23:50:35 UTC 2013


That is a sound response. I can agree there, and I will check out the
debate.

I'm in the middle of some large papers, so I won't be able to check out
anything from Selgin or White until September, but I will check it out.


On Thu, Aug 22, 2013 at 7:43 PM, Tyler Mittan <flashbatmanquestion at gmail.com
> wrote:

> Austrians argue that models can't take into account human action. That was
> a very Austrian thing of you to say. They only believe that models can take
> you so far. For instance, they think general equilibrium model is only
> slightly helpful, but is taken way too far into economics now. And like I
> said, Selgin and White are both not Austrians. In fact, Selgin argues
> frequently with the Mises Institute (he even wrote a book explaining Mises'
> methodology and why he thinks it's false). That being said, I think he is
> at least sympathetic towards it. Oh, free banking is also advocated by
> Milton Friedman's son: David Friedman whom teaches economics (although he
> got his PhD in Physics). He just debated an Austrian (Bob Murphy.. It's a
> pretty snarky debate on YouTube) on methodology. Anyway, more related,
> everything you just said doesn't really address what I was saying:
>
> Money doesn't have to be physical. Even during the times before the Fed or
> the bank of the Unites States when gold was currency, it was most often
> transfers of bank tickets instead of the actual gold itself. And
> subjectivism is true like the Austrians said, and has been adopted by all
> major economic theorists, thus bitcoin could be money. There are
> roadblocks, without a doubt, but that doesn't mean it couldn't be if the
> government stepped out of the way. And again, we don't want to replace the
> dollar. If we allowed for competing currencies, I think in the very long
> term, dollars would phase out if the Fed did not change its monetary
> policy.
> On Aug 22, 2013 7:34 PM, "Stephen Kraus" <ub3ratl4sf00 at gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> *shrugs* Econ majors, at lest the majority of the few I know, think the
>> Austrian School of thought is hilariously bad because, despite the nobel
>> prize winning professors among the group, none of their systems properly
>> function in reality because they fail to take into account human nature in
>> the economic theory.
>>
>> But that is beyond me, its why I had to ask them anyways, being a physics
>> major leaves me a little unprepared on economic theory.
>>
>>
>> On Thu, Aug 22, 2013 at 7:16 PM, Aaron Welch <n2nightfall at gmail.com>wrote:
>>
>>> How many of them have jobs?  What gives them the right to laugh?  They
>>> have failed to enlighten someone willing to learn.  That is just sad.
>>>
>>> -AW
>>>
>>>
>>> On Aug 22, 2013, at 6:37 PM, Stephen Kraus <ub3ratl4sf00 at gmail.com>
>>> wrote:
>>>
>>> No, I must not Chad, because all the Economics majors are over here
>>> rolling on the ground and laughing.
>>>
>>>
>>> On Thu, Aug 22, 2013 at 6:35 PM, Chad Smith <chad78 at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>
>>>> Um I am NOT talking about some sort of "let them eat cake" thing.  I am
>>>> talkng about Rich People being Personally Responsible for the results of
>>>> their "Corporation's! Actions.   You really really don't get this
>>>> On Aug 22, 2013 4:56 PM, "Stephen Kraus" <ub3ratl4sf00 at gmail.com>
>>>> wrote:
>>>>
>>>>> I'd like to point out your whole argument about corporations is
>>>>> INCREDIBLY silly Chad.
>>>>>
>>>>> Mainly because it assumes, based of your argument, that the only way
>>>>> to not have corporations is to live in a society of anarchy, because the
>>>>> instant a government is formed, WOAH LOOKOUT! Here comes corporations!
>>>>>
>>>>> The BP Oil spill? That was a corporation that failed to heed
>>>>> regulations on equipment inspections and safety. Are you kidding me with
>>>>> that argument?
>>>>>
>>>>> Also, the Romans realized, even way back then, that 'Personal
>>>>> Responsibility' is utter bullshit, and issues a grain stipend to the
>>>>> general public, because a starving, underpaid, overworked public means one
>>>>> thing: civil wars and rebellion.
>>>>>
>>>>> I mean, what you just wrote up is literally what got King Louis of
>>>>> France beheaded.
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>> On Thu, Aug 22, 2013 at 5:39 PM, Chad Smith <chad78 at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>
>>>>>> You are mission the point.  A corporation is an invention of the
>>>>>> government, not of the free market.  Yes, in a free market people can work
>>>>>> together.  But in a truly free market, they couldn't hide behind some "I
>>>>>> didn't do that, the corporation did that!" bs.  A human being built the car
>>>>>> that had glue under the gas pedal.  A human being designed it that way.  A
>>>>>> human being safety inspected it (alledgely) and a human being sold it.
>>>>>>  Those human beings should be held responsible for the results of their
>>>>>> actions.  Not hide behind some fictional "Entity" called a corporation.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> The BP oil spill?  That was a human who did that.  A human being is
>>>>>> resposible for that - NOT a "Corporation".  Corporations are a fiction that
>>>>>> we all (or most of us) just willingly accept as truth.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> If there was a Free Market - along with Personal Responsibility (the
>>>>>> other side of the "Yes, Mr. Obama, I really DID 'build that'." coin) - then
>>>>>> you wouldn't need government interference.  Standard laws that apply to any
>>>>>> human being (don't kill, don't steal, don't harm, etc.) would still be
>>>>>> around and enforcable.  In fact, they'd be far more enforcable than they
>>>>>> are today, because - as the law currently recognizes it - so much harm is
>>>>>> done by "Corporations" who cannot be jailed, or killed, or punished in any
>>>>>> way other than fines.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> *- Chad W. Smith*
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>> On Thu, Aug 22, 2013 at 4:27 PM, Stephen Kraus <
>>>>>> ub3ratl4sf00 at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>>
>>>>>>> Well you are right about one thing at least: Money's intrensic value
>>>>>>> is not a physical item, its set by consumer and producer demand.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> Which is ironically why Bitcoin will never be a MAJOR currency or a
>>>>>>> replacement for the Dollar.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> I never said it couldn't be a currency, see my previous reference to
>>>>>>> trading sea shells for cash and giving them a value, technically that makes
>>>>>>> them a currency, but the value of my sea shell currency is still hard set
>>>>>>> on how many USD I can get for the value of my sea shell, which might
>>>>>>> fluctuate depending on how many sea shells I have.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> Its therefore a currency. Not a good one, but a currency.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> Chad:
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> They WERE a corporation. Competing in a market. By driving every
>>>>>>> other competitor out of the market via either hostile buyouts or threats.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> In a free market, as you suggest, who is to tell these guys that
>>>>>>> they cannot do such thing? How do we keep a large, extremely profitable
>>>>>>> business from simply destroying all other businesses that compete with
>>>>>>> them? We can't regulate them, that would defeat the whole point of a free
>>>>>>> market.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> Innovation? They could just steal an innovative idea. See Thomas
>>>>>>> Edison for a good example of a man who basically bought peoples ideas, paid
>>>>>>> them nearly nothing for them, claimed them as his own, and then drove them
>>>>>>> out of the market.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> There is no such thing as a free market, its like saying having a
>>>>>>> game of chess, but everything is fair game.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> On Thu, Aug 22, 2013 at 5:16 PM, Tyler Mittan <
>>>>>>> flashbatmanquestion at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> There has a lot been said since I last checked so I haven't been
>>>>>>>> keeping up, but I do think that this nonsense about REAL, PHYSICAL things
>>>>>>>> is nonsense. Money is not all real, physical things.. Not unless you think
>>>>>>>> a credit card swipe is somehow valuable. All credit is a transfer of, not
>>>>>>>> funds, but credit it. It's really just a mark in a ledger. It is only when
>>>>>>>> the bank goes to the other bank that it is fulfilled. It's virtually a
>>>>>>>> credit.
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> It strikes me as odd for someone who is so anti-gold standard to
>>>>>>>> make claims like this which are so pro-gold standard it hurts.
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> Second, value is subjective (you can think Menger and the Austrians
>>>>>>>> who found this concept in which all modern day economics is built on except
>>>>>>>> socialists). NOTHING IS INTRINSICALLY VALUABLE. It seems like this is
>>>>>>>> something we all agree on. Given that money is not necessarily a physical
>>>>>>>> thing, and that value is subjective, we can see how bitcoin could be
>>>>>>>> considered money if valued by enough people.
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> Now that we've established that, we should look at why bitcoin is
>>>>>>>> not widely accepted which I mentioned before:
>>>>>>>> 1. People don't know about it. Economists and computer geeks, but
>>>>>>>> if you were to ask the average, say, psychology student whom has not
>>>>>>>> interest in politics whatsoever (and there are plenty) or virtually anyone
>>>>>>>> else, they most likely wouldn't know about it.. this begs the question:
>>>>>>>> even if they did know about it, would they want it?
>>>>>>>> 2. They might. The underlying point of me posting this was to show
>>>>>>>> that competing currencies could be a thing. They could be a thing that work
>>>>>>>> very well (as they have historically.. look up Richard Timberlake, Lawrence
>>>>>>>> White, and George Selgin). We can't say for sure if bitcoins would be a
>>>>>>>> very valuable thing, but we do know that it's getting very popular.. this
>>>>>>>> begs the question, if it's so popular, why aren't businesses buying it?
>>>>>>>> 3. This can be answered mostly by the fact that the legality of it
>>>>>>>> is iffy at best. It can also be answered that people trust the backing of a
>>>>>>>> government (whom obviously have a pretty poor track record, but people
>>>>>>>> don't know better).
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> So, there's no reason to think that bitcoins can't be money. I am
>>>>>>>> not saying they are widely accepted. I am not saying if they were legal
>>>>>>>> that they even would be widely accepted. I am saying that competing
>>>>>>>> currencies can, and should, be a thing to keep the dollar honest.
>>>>>>>>  On Aug 22, 2013 5:05 PM, "Stephen Kraus" <ub3ratl4sf00 at gmail.com>
>>>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> John...that is called the exchange rate. It really doesn't make
>>>>>>>>> bitcoins any more legitimate as a REPLACEMENT for the USD or as even a
>>>>>>>>> strong competitor.
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> On Thu, Aug 22, 2013 at 4:53 PM, John Aldrich <jmaldrich at yahoo.com
>>>>>>>>> > wrote:
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>> Quoting Stephen Kraus <ub3ratl4sf00 at gmail.com>:
>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>  Its funny that, Aaron a good comparison.
>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>> Because if I sell something on Ebay, I set a price in USD.
>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>> And if paypal doesn't give my bank my USD, I get cross
>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>>  Yes, that's true, Stephen... but if someone in, say, Germany,
>>>>>>>>>> wants to buy what you're selling, they will pay you via PayPal in
>>>>>>>>>> DeutschMarks, which Paypal will CONVERT to $USD. Or if you want to buy
>>>>>>>>>> something for your VW from someone in Germa ny, they are likely selling in
>>>>>>>>>> DM, and you will pay in $USD, but THEY will receive DM from PayPal.
>>>>>>>>>> Similarly, in theory, PayPal could start accepting Bitcoins and then
>>>>>>>>>> convert them to $USD or whatever currency, or just bank them like you do
>>>>>>>>>> with your local currency.
>>>>>>>>>>
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>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>
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