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Crypto Wars by Erica Stanford: A Black Comedy

The quote "Nietzsche said order comes out of chaos" is from the movie Blazing Saddles, not Nietzsche” sums up the history of crypto currencies. Nothing, as Erica shows us in Crypto Wars, is as it seems, and the fleecing of investors has been par excellence.

Involving all parties in the supply chain. From the creators of the many different crypto currencies to the exchanges, the use of MLM (multi-level marketing which is similar in concept to account layering used by Money Launders), unethical endorsements, pumpers, and dumpers and of course many varieties of Mr. Ponzi’s wonderful scheme where few investments made money. Billions of dollars lost since the crypto market burst into a fully-fledged bubble in 2017. Erica reels off the many masterpieces of deception beautifully.

Crypto Wars is a full-on review of what happens when taking a made-up currency, with little or no intrinsic value, on new technology and serve without any regulations or cyber security and with promises of instant wealth. The birth of crypto currency is not pretty. The book starts to brighten up towards the end by hinting at what could be achieved if crypto currencies are supported by the governors of the financial community.

The scale of the scams is enormous with Initial Coin Offerings (ICO) being issued to anyone with a pulse and at one stage ICOs market was worth $800 million, before a decline of $600 million as 81 percent were declared as scams with 92% of investors money disappearing. Many other scams were offering 6 to 18 percent per month return, obviously a rate that was too good to be true, but thousands invested.

The potential of crypocurrency are highlighted and included:

  • cryptocurrency is an inevitable evolution from paper currencies, (known as fiat currencies), issued by countries ranging from the US Dollar to the Venezuelan Bolivar. The later has hyperinflation and as such Venezuela is the now third largest user of cryptocurrencies
  • blockchain, the underlying technology, providing incredibly transparency, accountability and security fit for the digital age but is still developing
  • remittances, on track to become the largest source of external financing in developing countries, can be revolutionised through crypto saving intermediatory fees from 5 to 30% per transaction
  • financial inclusion for at least a billion people left behind by the traditional banks

Given the Wild West approach to law and order, innovative scams and real time electronic payments on an underlying financial and regulatory infrastructure that evolved from paper it’s no wonder cryptocurrencies has been a fraught journey.

This could become a new movie from Mel Brooks – Crypto War: Blazing Saddles meets The Producers - definitely, a black comedy.

 

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John Bertrand

John Bertrand

MD

Tec 8 Limited

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Digital Bank Transformation

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