Friday, November 18, 2022

neoliberals, sociopaths and crypto

It seems that the blockchain world is populated by an amazing zoo of people for whom backstabbing (by backdooring, or just by ponzi) is just seen as a normal part of life.

Socially, one might observe that people who think there's "no such thing as society" or that the institutions of civilisation should be torn down (defund the police, the BBC, the health service etc etc) are the sorts of people that wouldn't have survived long in a hunter gather tight knit, cooperative society, even less in the mutual aid world of pre-industrial farming (collective barn raising, savings&loans through credit mutuals etc ) - so this distrust or hatred of those sorts of organisations suggest people that don't trust other people. It is a short step from that, to some sort of solipsistic philosophy (no, not the bomb in Dark Star - or maybe, yes...). So then the "i'll just take the money and run", seems unsurprising. 

This is not to say that I don't believe the value of decentralised systems, but when it comes to stores of value and means of exchange, in the end, humans live in the physical world, where food, housing, even entertainment are experienced through something somehow undoubtable. I would actually go the opposite direction from cryptocurrencies, and rather advocate barter and other social constructs - indeed, Graeber's work on debt, the first 5000 years suggests that any notion of money (fiat or otherwise) is a tiny fraction of the ways humans have done business with each other over most of history, in many cultures.