The Slow But Inevitable Death of Bitcoin
Jun 14, 2018
There, I said it..
Let me also say that without a doubt, Bitcoin will most likely continue its reign as the number one crypto for some time still, and it may even go up in value considerably. Simpletons will interpret continued price increases as assurance that it is actually getting stronger and that I'm obviously wrong; stupid wrong. They will laugh at me, spit on my blog, and verbally castrate me as a heretic to their Bitcoin faith... but oh, it's coming my friends.. it's coming. While everyone is so focused on the price, they are missing the single-most important factor that is leading Bitcoin to its doom: IT'S RAPIDLY LOSING DOMINANCE!! (<-- click that link, seriously).. AND, IT'S LOSING FULL NODES!!
Obvious question is, WHEN will Bitcoin die?? That's difficult to say with any meaningful precision. Could be weeks, could be 100 years. I'm not here to give you a date, I'm here to point out the trend towards its death. Some people would rebut this trend saying, "well that's just because so many other coins have joined the cryptosphere".. uh.. exactly, genius. The erosion of Bitcoin's dominance is a consequence of other options available for investors.
So here's a detailed list of what Bitcoin has to offer that no other coin has to offer:
- First to market
And that's fucking it.
There's nothing else at all about Bitcoin that virtually every other major coin doesn't ALSO offer; despite perhaps your hugely misinformed presumptions otherwise.
So many Bitcoin maximalists would have you believe that Bitcoin is simply untouchable:
Dufus: "But but but, it's anonymous". No it's pseudoanonymous, just like most of the other coins.
Moron: "But but but the government can never take your bitcoins away". True, but they can make bitcoins illegal, destroying the current value into dust
Twit: "But but but Lightning Network will make Bitcoin competitive again". LN works with ALL coins, it won't give Bitcoin any special advantage. Regardless though, if an altcoin (say XRP?) already performs at far greater transaction rates than LN, and costs nearly nothing, then why would you choose a bicycle with wings, over a jet? Moreover, LN is having all kinds of problems with scaling.
Regurgitator: "But but but, it's a store of value!". Every coin, every single coin, is a store of value. That's what makes them coins. If they didn't store value, then what would they be good for?
Anyways, I have these asinine conversations all the time on Twitter, particularly about the incredibly bonkers conspiracy attributes they associate with XRP, so no need to repeat ad infinitum here. The point is, Bitcoin is running out of cards. It simply cannot compete with the next generation of tokens. It's basic human nature to stay with what is familiar, and so we witness the predictable manifestation of purists, maximalists, and anarchists, hanging on for dear life to their beloved 'precious'. Here's the kicker though, none of these Bitcoin evangelists have any power to stop what's coming.
You may want to ask 'why' is Bitcoin slated for death? For the same reason we aren't rolling around Rai Stones, there's better tech available, and if people can save money and move money quicker, then they're not going to give a damn that Bitcoin was first. Attrition will continue to eat away at the value of that simple dated novelty.
So that leaves just 'when' it will happen. Again, when Bitcoin will die is impossible to pinpoint, but the "steps" towards Bitcoin's demise are clear as lightning.. (serendipitous pun)
The 5 Stages of Bitcoin's Inevitable Death
Stage 1) Massive Bitcoin unloading sales - e.g. mt gox. This has to happen slowly enough so as not to totally destroy the price, and for a while the price may actually continue to climb, possibly a hell of a lot; but as more and more heavy holders start looking for the exit, the price will stagnate. You have to ask yourself, if Bitcoin is so promising in the future, why would anybody sell such large quantities?? Exactly, if the people that can move the price are getting out, that's a really bad sign. It will be hard to know these large sales are happening because most of these trades will be OTC, but they will be visible on the Bitcoin blockchain in the form of increasing volume and higher fees, yet tellingly there'll be no associated increase in price.
Stage 2) Uptick in negative Bitcoin propaganda - Bitcoin is centralized, mining ruins the environment, it's slow, it's expensive, LN is too complicated.. Look for these opinions starting to surface in the more mainstream media, particularly when juxtaposed against the positive attributes of the competing coins. Once the education campaign begins in earnest, you can be pretty sure the whales have made their escape from Bitcoin and are ready to sink the ship to draw attention to the new coins these miserable bastards have relocated to.
Stage 3) The Decoupling - As it is right now, top altcoins are married to Bitcoin, essentially all prices across top coins are locked together and their values move in nearly identical percentages, meaning 100% manipulation. There is zero reality to any prices you see. Why? Well, the whales that are heavily invested in Bitcoin, don't want to see XRP jump 20% and start pulling away buyers of Bitcoin, so the whales ratchet up the price of Bitcoin to deter defections, and otherwise take the steam out of another coin's rally. This can be heartbreaking for those of us invested in genuinely useful crypto, say XRP, and despite endless good news and partnerships, we still have to take whatever punishment BTC dishes out. Sure we have these massively inspiring price spikes, but then BTC just knocks us back down; like taking a shower and then putting your dirty underwear back on. Trust me, once the negative Bitcoin propaganda kicks in, the decoupling will follow.
Stage 4) The Flippening - The unimaginable happens, Bitcoin's market cap is dethroned. It doesn't even have to hold, nor does it have to be XRP that takes its crown, but at some point in the future, based upon the simple fact that Bitcoin's dominance continues its neckbreaking descent into obsolescence, there will be a crossing of streams, and the notoriety of being #1, will slip from its grasp. It's no longer the big coin in town, it's no longer shiny and simple. It's now unpopular, and for something that has absolutely nothing else going for it other than 'being' popular, panic ensues, people want out. The price drops. A lot. ALONE. Bitcoin Miners around the world shift to more profitable coins, better coins. Bitcoin mining difficulty drops radically. But this isn't 2013, this is a much different world with orders of magnitude of mining power available, and hugely concentrated. Once the difficulty of Bitcoin mining drops enough, then we expose the unprotected underbelly of Bitcoin, and that is..
Stage 5) The Double-Spend - The unimaginable happens again. A double-spend attack is successfully executed, millions of bitcoins are stolen. Like an earthquake tearing apart the Earth's crust, the once immutable, impeccable, glory-laden mantle of Bitcoin's hegemony, will crack open and reveal its rotten antiquated core. Dials, and gears, lies and tears, and a hamster running his little ass off, will all see the light of day. From business as usual one minute, to total collapse the next. When, not if, Bitcoin's turn to suffer the increasingly frequent PoW double-spend attack happens, it will be a digital nuclear holocaust as every man, woman, and troll run to coins like XRP that aren't susceptible to double-spend attacks. Sure, there will always be some lingering hobbyists maintaining their cute little Bitcoin nodes so they can put it on their resume, but nobody will seriously put their money into an unsecurable coin.
It's coming alright. My buddy Mikey J and I are sitting here with the popcorn, watching the Big Bitcoin Short unfold in stop-frame reality-max. Wish I had the fast-forward, because I do love a good, "I told you so", but as the saying goes, all good things come with time if you're in XRP.
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