S12 E6: Talking Politics with Ben de Waal, Alexandra Moxin & Karo Zagorus

I’ve been meaning to bring Ben de Waal on the Bitcoin Takeover podcast for longer than a year. Back in June 2021, we first started talking about doing an interview about left-wing anarchism, living on bitcoin, and suing the German tax office to accept BTC as foreign currency. But in the meantime, Ben went to other shows to exhaust these topics to the point where I needed to find an original angle for them.

When Ben and I first met in person at Paralelni Polis’ Pizza Day 2022, I found out that he is also the kind of OG who was active within the community in the very early days of Bitcoin. But given the reserved nature of his speech, I figured he wouldn’t want to do the kind of interview that I recorded with Amir Taaki.

Five months later, Ben and I once again met in Prague at Paralelni Polis – this time, for the ninth annual edition of the Hackers Congress. Both of us expressed a willingness to record an episode, but we spent a few minutes trying to figure out how we can do something that wasn’t done before. The goal of the Bitcoin Takeover podcast is to promote originality and always find new angles to present prominent figures from the space.

That’s when everyone’s favorite dragon Karo Zagorus (whom you’ve previously heard in S2 E5) casually joined the conversation and asked when he can once again get interviewed on Bitcoin Takeover. Ben de Waal is a left-wing libertarian, while Karo is pretty right wing in his views. So I figured: why don’t we do a three-way interview in which the two sides of the political spectrum get portrayed?

But as we were approaching the recording room, Alexandra Moxin also decided to tag along. She’s friends with Karo and has some disparate political views which she labels as “apolitical” due to their non-partisan nature. Some would call her a centrist, except that she has points where she agrees with both extremes without needing to find a middle ground between them.

This is the story behind the podcast episode that just happened. We sung national anthems during the microphone check moments, then dived straight into some of the most controversial and divisive topics that surround us. Do we need states at all? Is privacy necessary? Can Bitcoin perform the Marxist dream of withering away the state? Will Bitcoin fix everything around us, or should we fix ourselves first? And most importantly, which shitcoin caught the guests’ attention?

During the 92 minutes of our recording, you will find different answers for all of these questions and much more. Ultimately, I have been able to interview Ben de Waal in a different way because of the context and diversity of ideas. Otherwise, had we done a basic one on one interview, we might have agreed a lot more.

Follow Ben de Waal on Twitter: @Ben_deWaal

Follow Karo Zagorus on Twitter: @btcdragonlord

Follow Alexandra Moxin on Twitter: @Alexandra933

Listen to Ben de Waal, Alexandra Moxin and Karo Zagorus on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and YouTube!

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On the other hand, if you want a private experience for which no registration is required then you can use this free player. For privacy, use a VPN or the Tor browser so I won’t even know your country of origin (which gets determined according to your IP address). And if you’re into offline listening, then you’ll be happy to find the download button.

Time stamps:

00:52 – Singing

03:31 – Introducing the guests

04:56 – Let’s talk politics!

06:28 – Should states exist?

08:20 – Karo “Carlos” Zagorus is a superstar in Norway

09:20 – 51% attacking BSV

10:40 – Karo’s fashionable privacy

16:50 – Privacy

25:25 – Is top-down Bitcoin adoption a good idea?

30:00 – Why the fiat system is broken

33:19 – Big government is bad

36:10 – Taxes

44:10 – Stores of value

48:47 – Focus on building?

50:01 – What about no states?

51:10 – George Orwell’s Animal Farm

51:45 – Libertarian socialist state

52:30 – What about guns?

55:50 – Autonomous regions, not nations

57:35 – Nation vs state

01:00:45 – Withering away the state

01:01:30 – Drugs?

01:13:10 – Fix yourself first

01:16:35 – What is left and what is right?

01:16:50 – Ownership

01:20:50 – Favorite shitcoin?

01:25:45 – How to follow Ben, Alexandra & Karo

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Vlad Costea

I'm here for the freedom, censorship-resistance, and unconfiscatability. What about you?

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