In this season premiere, Donald McIntyre talks about the anthropological and historical elements that led to the creation of Bitcoin, and reveals his admiration and affinity for the works of Tim May and Nick Szabo.
The interview is currently available on YouTube (which features stunning images from Transfăgărășan in Romania, and has a couple of visual advantages such as playing at higher speeds and displaying a transcript via closed caption that can even be translated in most languages) and directly from the RSS feed.
Hopefully, the application to Apple Podcasts will also be approved soon to enable everyone interested to find the information.
If you find this podcast useful, feel free to donate BTC at the following address: 35c9yeNt3eBYsRkNZB3fMwVzrkvL2efUj4
50% of donations made to this address will be sent to Mr. Donald McIntyre, as a way of rewarding him for the time and effort that he put into learning all these fascinating facts and speaking about them on the Bitcoin Takeover Podcast.
Topics and timestamps:
0:50 – Introduction
2:50 – Was Bitcoin Inevitable?
6:45 – Cypherpunks
7:50 – Desire for Privacy and Sound Money
9:30 – Money as Freedom
13:00 – Trust Minimization
14:40 – Nick Szabo’s Social Scalability
18:30 – Privacy and Intelligence Agencies
24:00 – Not Your Keys, Not Your Coins
30:00 – Comments on Centralized Projects
32:00 – Views on Hyperbitcoinization
39:45 – The 1% Wasn’t First in Bitcoin
44:00 – The Early Bitcoin Days
44:50 – Bitcoin as a Biological Invention, Nick Szabo’s Approach, The Origins of Money
57:00 – Nick Szabo, Tim May, Wei Dai, Hal Finney, Satoshi Nakamoto
1:10:00 – Bitcoin’s Game Theory
1:15:00 – Satoshi and Nick Szabo Are Just Like Newton and Leibnitz
1:19:00 – What Was Tim May Like?
1:22:00 – David Chaum
1:26:00 – Cypherpunk Inventions
1:30:00 – Tim May and Wei Dai on Violence
1:32:00 – What Is Ethereum?
1:38:00 – How ETC Supplements BTC
1:42:00 – Bitcoin and Ethereum Classic in 10 Years
1:53:00 – The Only Legitimate Hard Fork in Bitcoin
1:54:00 – Governments and Bitcoin
1:58:00 – Miners’ Attacks on Bitcoin Supply and Block Reward
Vlad Costea (00:00:47):
Hello and welcome to the Bitcoin takeover. I am Vlad. And today my guest is mr. Donald McIntyre, whom I’ve met from a previous interview, which I’ve done. And he is probably best known in the field for his advocacy of Ethereum Classic. After the DAO hack, he stuck with the Ethereum Classic side. He believes in immutability. He likes everything that applies to the laws of nature. And when you talk to him, he presents himself as somebody who’s involved in business and sales. But if you have a longer conversation, you’ll notice that he has vast knowledge about issues such as anthropology, and he likes everything that deals with human evolution, human societies, I guess he’s into philosophy too. And it’s good to have him here and talk about what Bitcoin actually means in terms of evolution. So hello, Mr. McIntyre.
Donald McIntyre (00:01:55):
Hello Vlad. Thank you very much for having me. Yeah. I’m happy that we get to do this as the Bitcoin takeover is all about the issues, which turn cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin in particular into a serious matter. We no longer talk about the mainstream media narrative of a Ponzi scheme or something that will collapse. We actually look into the future and see what this type of income cost money that cannot be confiscated. How do you say datable and in confiscated? Well, I guess, yeah, incomplete. We’re both not English native speaker, so yeah, but what can having an asset which cannot be confiscated mean for governments, which we’re used to confiscating and imposing their own money, monetary policies. And my first question to you actually is, do you think that it was inevitable for us to get to this stage? I th I think so. I, I never thought of that. If it was inevitable, when, when I look I’m I’m, I’m just, just to, just to clarify what you said about me in the introduction. I am, I am just an amateur and I like to review history and anthropology and ethnography of different places to, to understand the origin of things. But regarding that, what I see is that in the last three, 3.5 million years we have evolved and the world was made up of small groups, the world, meaning humans, small groups, families, and that they maybe they interacted and cooperated together. And then in the last 20 or 10,000 years after the last ice age, we gathered in larger groups, we formed like villages and towns and then with agriculture and pastoralism we became more efficient. So we, those small villages and towns became bigger.
Donald McIntyre (00:04:11):
And then you had the bigger cities or 50 States in Mesopotamia, and then the Greeks, then the Roman empire, et cetera. So, so we became not only city States, but nations and then empires now. So although all that evolution I think was in the last maybe 10,000 years so this thing of having popped down government and top down law and rules and systems such as money either gold coins or Fiat money in post by, by top down governments is pretty new. So in that sense in terms of inevitability, I think that it is inevitable that we still have the brains evolve for the previous stage, not for these huge nations and cities that we live in now, for example, LA 20 million people, the whole metropolitan area, New York, 20 million people. And then you have bigger cities like Seoul in South Korea, 33 million people in the metropolitan area that that’s unnatural for our brain.
Donald McIntyre (00:05:28):
So, so I think we have a, a natural tendency to believe in our individuality and individual Liberty. So that’s what I see. I don’t know. I don’t, I don’t know whether it was inevitable. But what was inevitable is that we feel this uncomfort being in these huge structures on societies which in a way like a blur our individuality a lot for example, millennials like to talk about collaborating and being together and community and, and giving to others without expecting, expecting anything in return, that those are ideals of small villages, really, that we’re extrapolating to nations of 300 million people or multi nations, like the European union that are like 500 million people. So it’s an inevitable, maybe the fact that we don’t feel comfortable or that it’s awkward. It’s like a cognitive dissonance to live in these huge structures, but at the same time have this brain that hasn’t adapted yet because of that, I think that the cypherpunks, since the eighties, starting with Chaum and then with a Tim May, may he rest in peace and Nick Szabo and Wei Dai and Hal Finney and all the other cypherpunks, they may be rationalized this.
Donald McIntyre (00:07:04):
And, and they were very strong advocates of individuality, you know, and and they thought correctly, I think that cryptography would, they could build with cryptography based online environments where we can really create a individuality and do the reverse instead of blurring the individual to blur the structures above now the top down structures. And I think that in that sense, Bitcoin is the response, but I don’t know if it was inevitable, we needed a group like cypherpunks to, to create it.
Vlad Costea (00:07:45):
Yes sir, but I guess we have had this desire to have gold that cannot be confiscated for a very long time to have the kind of money that is yours. And nobody else knows how much you’re holding, even though right now with Bitcoin, we have this privacy issue, which allows anyone to be how much you actually own just by knowing your public key or tracking your transactions by IP, or looking at your browsing activity to see if you have any wallets lately. So they can figure out how much you own just from these factors, but the desire. And I guess the idea of Bitcoin is different from the current implementation, ultimately is going to be sound money, which all fill fit the criteria, and that’s going to become fungible too, if they improvements that they already have in the plans and the books. And I think it’s only natural for humans to desire to own something without being able to lose it by the force of somebody else.
Donald McIntyre (00:09:00):
Yeah. If it’s something and let’s say we are in the primitive societies, and it was all about the survival of the fittest and the strongest, if you’re already the strongest among your community, you’re entitled to have everything, all the resources, everything that you’d wish for you’d have just by virtue of your power and your force. In our modern time, it became about armies or about charisma, the ability to move large masses of people, but you always had a way to freeze somebodies accounts, even in modern times, stop people from engaging in trade and commerce. And basically as long as you have control over somebody’s money, you cannot stay that they are completely free. Exactly. This is what Bitcoin does by excellent.
Donald McIntyre (00:09:57):
Yeah. Big Bitcoin is definitely a top bottom up system. Now that means that it gives absolute power to the individual and significantly reduces power of any larger structures like governments, state, and other larger organizations, illusions it’s even legal systems if you, if you have Bitcoin and, and you have your private key and you are good with your private key security nobody can do, nobody can access that that month. We are living in a, in a dual world now because what, we’re, what we’re talking about this individuality and the fact that now with cryptography, we can have digital assets that kind of be confiscated is, is living together because it’s just being born on the last 10 years. It’s living together with the other model, which is that all of our assets are in institutions like banks. And they’re protected by armies on the police and the legal system. We are very used to that. The same happens with the privacy. People are not very conscious that their assets are not in their own control. They’re really in the control of third parties and the same thing with with our privacy. There’s, there’s like something similar happening there. We use Google, Facebook, Amazon, Apple I dunno, Twitter and all these online applications are recording are, are everything we do now. They don’t, I think at this point they don’t even need know our name
Donald McIntyre (00:11:55):
To know everything up. I think they even know more about us, our psychology behavior, what we’re going to do tomorrow, where we’re going to go on vacation because of their analytics, much more than us. So, so yeah. In terms of property and privacy, the current systems we have, we have completely delegated because of a false sense of security to these third parties. And Bitcoin is definitely, absolutely now with as long as we have our private key and many say that we, we should also run our own notes, who to verify that we are in the right network. As long as we have that, that property is totally a different paradigm, belongs to us. And we provide access to a few others in the old power paradigm, everything is in the institutions and they provide access to us to our own assets. So that’s, that’s the main change of paradigm that I see.
Vlad Costea (00:12:59):
Yes. And I guess as we both know, from the philosophy of people like Nick Szabo, trust scales very poorly, and the more people you trust, the more likely it is for your little secret or for your possession to get compromised in one way or another. So the only way to make it is to minimize the amounts of trust that you give to people or institutions or anything that is led by humans, computer systems, I guess it’s better to have a minimized trust because a as fewer as you have the better you’re off, just because you don’t store your data on too many systems.
Donald McIntyre (00:13:46):
Yeah, absolutely. The way it works now now we’re talking, we’re using zoom. Everything is going through zoom and we don’t know if it’s being recorded somewhere. And then they use that information to analyze our, our recording. When, when we use Amazon to buy stuff, everything’s being recorded on Amazon, when we use Alexa and all those home devices, any interaction with home devices, it’s not between us and the device directly. Each transaction goes to the central server, the provider, and then it comes back to our home and executes the, the, the, the instruction. So everything is totally currently delegated. The only systems that are decentralized and eliminate or minimize third parties are, are, are blockchains like Bitcoin. You said something about Nick Szabo. I, yes. When, when he, when he wrote about social scalability, I mean, it was, that was an incredible, like, I don’t know if all the or
Donald McIntyre (00:14:52):
Insight that he had, and, and it’s a paradox now because to be socially scalable, meaning that a system can be distributed to everybody in the world or the most people possible you need less people or less social prevention in the system itself. So that’s interesting because it has to do with the limit of our brain that I was talking before. What, what he says is that if we have systems that are run by humans need to trust those humans, because those humans don’t have the ability to understand what millions of people are doing at the same time, because they have limited brains. Then the rules that they impose it basically to exclude everybody and only let in the people that they can control. Now, one by one, a system that works like that is the American banking system with all your customers. And that same system has been replicated practically all over the world.
Donald McIntyre (00:15:56):
That means that if you want to open an account in a bank, just because they have these mental limitations, they prefer to say, okay, we don’t trust. So you have to prove to us that you are a good person, and then we’re going to open your account. And so we have to send your passport, your social security number, your driver’s license education and address, you have to send proof of where you live by sending other copies of, of [inaudible]. And because of that system, a lot of people kind of go through that, or it’s very costly. Both of that process. There’s a lot of people, even within the United States, there’s like 60 million people that are unbanked the United States, this advanced society in Latin America, where I come from it’s the other way around it’s it’s here in America is eight 20% who are not, not in America.
Donald McIntyre (00:16:51):
In some, some cases it’s 80 because of the same things, because, because the banks and the governments kind of control everybody because they’re powered by the brain, by the brains of the officials. And those brains are limited. And because they’re limited, they have to stop everyone and only let each one, one by one checking the manually. And that is not scalable social. Imagine when, if we could create a system that is absolutely secure and you can trust that it’s totally secure, but at the same time, it’s not, it’s not operated by the brains of other people, but notes in a decentralized network, in that case, anybody can participate because the rules are never going to be broke, nothing wrong is going to happen. System, even if no one with a brain is controlling
Donald McIntyre (00:17:52):
The difference between the traditional systems. And, and these are now new decentralized blockchains now that that they totally minimize these third parties that are so limited, so anybody can use, so the less social intervention, the more socially scalable.
Vlad Costea (00:18:13):
But as I recall, you have mentioned a few instances when our privacy is being infringed by centralized services. And I agree with you that even this conversation that we’re having might just be recorded on a separate server and they are in charge of it. And if somebody from the NSA wants to check the content, they can actually get a copy. And record themselves
Donald McIntyre (00:18:43):
Yeah. The intelligence agencies and other in this country, we are in our countries or other countries could be listening to us right now.
Vlad Costea (00:18:51):
Yeah. But I, I’m not sure if we are that interesting right now, no offense.
Donald McIntyre (00:18:56):
But not that, that is a, that is the,
Donald McIntyre (00:18:59):
In a way, the false sense of security that we all have now, we are so small and so insignificant that nobody. So I don’t care much about my private property or my privacy. But yeah, it’s a, it’s an interesting analogy.
Vlad Costea (00:19:16):
What I was going to ask starting from that point was, do you think that now that we have a form of money, which has all the qualities of sound money and cannot be confiscated and grants us a greater amount of privacy, is this step enough to actually desire for more and to enable the whole society to demand for decentralized services or something which does not track them and become more cautious about all the services that may be, do not work in their best interests in terms of privacy, at least
Donald McIntyre (00:19:58):
If it’s enough. I think that we’re now all these decentralized systems like Bitcoin, Ethereum Classic Litecoin, Monero, etc. They are the answer because they are bottom up systems with no centralized control, et cetera. And they are a solution for, or money, no confiscation property, and, and also for agreement whether, whether, if that’s alone by them, just because they exist, that that is going to change everything. I don’t know for now only a few million people use it now, maybe 20 million, 30 million, very optimistically 50 million people, but many of those using intermediaries who these systems, for example, they use Coinbase or Binance or other centralized services. Many people use the exchanges as their wallet. So it’s basically identical as the banking system. They’re, they’re basically putting their crypto in a trusted third party. So, so I think that at least, or the very early adopters, it is the solution.
Donald McIntyre (00:21:11):
And in that segment of the world population is these systems just by existing is enough to turn it around things. They just, as a side note we’re here in classic where I work a lot. I see a lot of activity from Asia countries like China and Taiwan, South Korea take the past of, of conflict and top down control and, and, and and more arbitrary forms of government. They are very interested in, in theorem classic, for example, as opposed to Ethereum, because if you’re in classic, constantly talks about immutability private property, the not reversing the chain and stuff like that. So they are very conscious about security, at least the communities that are following this in those countries. But then we have the rest of the 7.5 billion people in the world that are not very conscious for the reasons that we said before.
Donald McIntyre (00:22:16):
They’re very used to these centralized systems. They’re used to being protected by the government. So I think that we need not only for these systems to exist, but also for third parties to continue to prove that they’re not trustworthy. For example, when there is a breach in a bank, when there is a breach, a cable company, and they see that they, they stole everybody’s identity when there’s reach reaches in, in exchanges like Mt. Gox and many others that were hacked. So, so maybe who convinced the rest of the world to use, to migrate to these much more secure systems that guaranteed privacy and property and the agreement. Maybe we need both things, not only the existence of the systems themselves, and to communicate that with marketing, et cetera, but also for trusted third parties to continue to make mistakes. And I’m being hacked and, and being dishonest to finally convince people of, of what’s called, are you still there? Yes. So you said what’s going on? And you stopped. Yeah. Yeah. That’s what I was saying is that we need not only Bitcoin to exist, but also for people see that they need big Bitcoin. And, and for that to see that they, they need to see that the banks and centralized services are, are reaching their security and privacy.
Vlad Costea (00:23:56):
Yeah. This is exactly why we should say, as often as we can that, unless you own the keys and you store the coins in your own wallet, then you cannot say that they are your coins. Yes, very likely that they will be stolen or they can be frozen. And I even know people who hold coins on exchanges and they try to withdraw them and they had a limit, a daily limit and the monthly limit. So if they wanted to liquidate their accounts and take away everything, they had to file the, their KYC requirements. And then answer the question, why do you want to withdraw then wait for awhile. So in a sense, this business model relies on the idea that you most likely don’t withdraw ever. They try to give you incentives to stay faithful to their system. And when you do try to withdraw, they act as if you’re doing something very wrong. And actually it’s so much better to hold it with them because they pretend they have great security. They say, they allow you to make instant payments. They may call these claims and they persuade you one way or another, or even go as far as blackmailing you emotionally or intellectually, unless you’re determined to say I have my own hardware wallets, or a secure mobile wallet, and I’m going to store the coins in there.
Donald McIntyre (00:25:26):
Yeah. I think that what you said is key that the, that they offer instant payments, not only a lot of marketing, for example, JP Morgan, the last 120 years, they have been showing their building in New York as a, as a sign of, of strength and many banks do that. That if you see the public bank, they’re large, they’re large buildings and stuff like that because in our small brains and limited brain we, we normally see that as a sign of authority and strength and and credibility and, and solvency. The reality is that that building is worth, I don’t know, a hundred or $200 million or half a billion dollars. And people have like $2 trillion in JP Morgan. So they’re not going to pay anything, but if something happened but but no, so not only, not only are we having this false feeling of security by having our money in the banking system and having our information with a doc with Silicon Valley companies.
Donald McIntyre (00:26:36):
But what you said is very interesting. They also offer this instant gratification. Now, when, when, when I use PayPal, it’s immediate, so it’s high performance. I can send $1. And to another PayPal user, they only have like 160 million users. I say only because the world is seven point $5 billion. So PayPal is not the solution either. But they do offer this instant gratification and high performance. For example, when, when we put our websites on AWS or run our apps and they all run on cloud service, et cetera, they’re much faster when you use Ethereum, for example, adapt on Ethereum. You have to wait for 15 seconds, send the money. Then when you send an, a transaction or instruction to the top it takes another 15 seconds. Not only that for security, you should wait for 50 confirmations in with your plastic Ethereum or Ethereum Classic.
Donald McIntyre (00:27:46):
Now it was, it was not hacked, but there was doubles and the ax this, this week, so now we’re recommending to use 5,000 confirmations. So that means that these decentralized systems, the other tradeoff that Nick Szabo said that exists related to social scalability is to be able to reduce the first party parties and to be able to not use the brains of the trusted third parties are limited. Satoshi needed to create this highly inefficient energy burning system to make it highly secure. That security means inefficiency. Like I said, an inefficiency means that these systems are never going to be as fast as Amazon cloud services or IBM Google cloud services or PayPal or Apple, the Apple store or an and all those systems. So that’s another thing that is like a bright plus is going to take a while for us to realize our privacy or private property and our agreements have to be highly protected with no trusted third parties. And for that, we’re going to have to accept that the secure systems are less efficient. Maybe use the centralized systems for smaller, more insignificant. But yes, the, the fallacy of the high performance I would call it,
Vlad Costea (00:29:27):
I think it’s pretty much the same way at all. The blockchain splits promise to have quicker transactions, faster validations, oldies features, which actually are pretty much used less and pretty much legitimize their presence on the market, through these features while lacking the exact fundamentals, which make Bitcoin great. But they’re not really decentralized. They’re not really permissionless. They have a few founders who maybe had huge free minds, which made them rich. Yeah, it’s a physical reality
Donald McIntyre (00:30:08):
That if a system has to be completely decentralized, then it has to be more inefficient. It cannot be as fast as Amazon or PayPal. So you, you, you, you said it exactly as it is exactly as it is. All these new blockchains are doing what Wassim Alsindi of Parallel Industries calls industries calls decentralization, decentralization theater, which is basically they’re acting that they’re decentralized, but at the same time, they’re, they’re, they’re promising the same scalability scaling and performance and storage capacity, a centralized system. The reality is to reach those levels metrics. You have to be a centralized system. So basically they are, they are, they are doing this dual messaging and doing a decentralization theater. And that’s why many in the crypto industry industry, including me call them scammers because they, they, they, they say, OK, Bitcoin takes ’em fixed confirmations. It’s very slow, burns energy, and only does eight transactions per for per second. My system does a billion transactions per second is proof of stake. So it doesn’t burn energy and, and it’s super fast and, and, and you can do high volumes and it’s super secure. One of that is not possible. So either you’re ignorant or a scammer,
Vlad Costea (00:31:48):
Yeah. We should get to a topic which concerns Bitcoin much more because the more we get into scam coins and value project, I guess the, the less relevance the show has to have these important discussions. And one of the topics which sometimes I approach with people, I talk to regards to the so called state of hyper Bitcoinization. When you basically have this immutable currency universally available and well understood by all of its users. And you can use it everywhere that you can imagine. It’s basically the new standard for currencies all over the world. And one of the disagreements, which I with them regarding the idea of where it starts from some say that it starts from the wealthy ones in the developed countries who acquire a large amounts of Bitcoin. And from that point onwards demand for a higher adoption. Well, I sometimes think that it doesn’t make much sense for them to buy much Bitcoin.
Vlad Costea (00:33:03):
It’s actually those who need it, that will use it more. It’s people in Venezuela, it’s people in Palestine, it’s people, even the 20% of the Americans who hold no bank account, they have a greater need for Bitcoin than everybody else. While somebody from Germany mile, Mike, I Bitcoin, as a speculated asset, somebody else from Venezuela will just buy it and think this is their way to transact with the rest of the world. It’s their way or them to get engaged in world commerce and remain relevant on the market, which marginalizes him as a citizen of that country, which is in a bad political situation. So do you think it makes more sense for the greater adoption to come from the developed side of the world or from those who rise and realize that they actually have a chance to overcome their problems and become relevant on the world markets through the simple fact that they buy Bitcoin and they can use it or everyday needs.
Donald McIntyre (00:34:25):
Yeah. Yeah. Your, your, your argument is that Bitcoin’s promises promise is hard money and security. And that currently people in, in country, in like in North American Europe, personnel, big investors but they live in, in regions of the world where security and hard money is not such a problem as the other countries like Venezuela and the rest of Latin America, I would say. So, so you’re what you are observing is that it’s not very logical that for hurdlers America and Europe have such large amounts of Bitcoin when the real use case is in Venezuela with people with, with that are poor and they’re poor because of their top down government, they’re socialists, they take that on and they don’t respect their people and their individual rights and their, even their life, some cases and less their property and agreements there’s there should be the adoption person. So in terms of the
Donald McIntyre (00:35:38):
Logic of where the need is the distribution of where the need is, I totally agree with you that the higher need for this is in those areas of the world where our arbitrary government and society, and is controlled in that way. And property and agreements are violated. However, the reality is that physically the, the, the, the way the world works is that things start small and it’s very costly to make it available to the world unless they go and buy in steps. So like any technology, it is first adopted by a group that maybe there are more technical or, or in the case of all of products that need scale and investment. There are adopted first by a group of investors who are believers. I would say there are the early adopters within, within the elite in the world now in North America and Europe, other places where there’s very rich people.
Donald McIntyre (00:36:50):
I think that the process for these to bootstrap these technologies or new products, when they need so much scale to lower the cost and make it available to the rest of the world, you actually need to go through this process where rich people are the first ones to buy. It happens with, it happened for the airline industry in the beginning, the term jets that was only for rich people, because they were the only ones that could pay flying a jet like in the fifties. So today I can fly from Denver to new Orleans for $120. Sometimes it’s $90, depending on what airline I use, if it’s a discount airline or more full service or lane, why can I do that today in 2018? And in fact, in 1950, nobody could fly except for the elite, because we needed this process.
Donald McIntyre (00:37:47):
It is a very costly to put airplanes everywhere in the world, airports everywhere in the world, fuel distribution, everywhere in the world, be the first ones we used them and because they use it, then it scales. And because it’s scale and it’s available to the rest of the world in a low cost, the same dynamics apply to Bitcoin. At the beginning, there were 10 and a hundred and a thousand, but those people are the first people who believed in it and they buy it. And those are the ones that bootstrap it. And then when it was worth a thousand dollars and $10,000 and $20,000 well, yeah, the rich people benefit and the people who owned it and these in these countries, because they saw it, it was available first. But the, it is needed to have these elites to have access first my opinion, because they bootstrap the system once Bitcoin the rest of the world can see that these early adopters and rich people are using Bitcoin and they see, wow it’s secure, look how it works.
Donald McIntyre (00:38:56):
And they see all the information. And now, and now it has a 10 year history. And when it has a 15 year history of 20 year history, that because of the Lindy effect, the more Bitcoin exists without reaching a security. The more the world are going to be convinced that it’s a secure system and the more distributed is going to be at the same time. All these rich people are going to use their wealth to create services, build apps. That’s a state that our finance startups and all that sweat. So I think that the process is the natural way. And I don’t find that it’s illogical that people in North America, Europe who are rich and elite are the first ones who have access, because thanks to that, Bitcoin is going to be available in the rest of the world. In my opinion,
Vlad Costea (00:39:48):
There’s also one argument which I heard. And it made sense, even though there is no way to actually know that Bitcoin is the first financial invention ever, to which, the 1% elites did not have instant access. So at first the ones who got into it, more geeks than computer scientists who actually saw the potential in it and the speculators and the bankers and the ones who own large amounts of Viet money actually got in at a later phase. And they do not own such a large percentage.
Donald McIntyre (00:40:30):
I don’t know who owns how much, but but it doesn’t surprise me what you’re describing because Bitcoin is very, very unique because when the internet came, for example, when I, when I started to follow the internet in the mid nineties and then the.com boom, and I started the company it was just the technology. It was practically free to use what, what demanded and investment and what created the upside was to actually create a startup with hairs that we own chairs, me and my investors own chairs. And if that’s a start up work to be successful, then the shares would go up. But the technology itself didn’t have any economic, internal, intrinsic economic value, other than what it enabled now for the startup to capture that value in the case of Bitcoin is very unique. Also, I think maybe a new paradigm where the protocol itself depends on a token and that token goes up in, so
Donald McIntyre (00:41:34):
The technology has the value internally intrinsic to the, to the token, even part of the design without the token, it doesn’t work. And without a token going up in value, it doesn’t work either because you need, you need the value to go up so that more miners coming and, and the miners create more security. And because it’s more secure than people can use it in Venezuela, and there’s more demand. So the price goes up, but more miners come in. And, and that that’s the cycle now. So that that’s the changing part or the unique paradigm that these protocols have, and Bitcoin in particular, which they have to have the token first. And so going back to what you described, if the technologists were the first ones who have Bitcoin, and now like Hal Finney, for example, that that’s amazing because there was an overlap in that case that the tech geeks and the cypherpunks who not necessarily are rich, they just mined it.
Donald McIntyre (00:42:35):
And they ha they had a hundred thousand, I don’t know, half a million in the case of Satoshi. Some people say that he has a million Bitcoins and maybe, maybe they were there. They were, and maybe there are still just geeks, and they’re not really interested in the money. They are there. They’re interested in the technology. But then there are the overlap, these, this second group of people who say, wait, this thing was worth 1 cent, 10 years ago, and now it’s worth $4,000. Wow. There’s something here. So they’re coming in late. However, they still have a lot of money though, so they can buy a lot anyway. Now they can, they can buy a, I think for $4 million, they can buy a thousand big, for example.
Vlad Costea (00:43:23):
Yeah. But that’s not still the same. 10 years ago, if you wanted to mind Bitcoin, so you’d get, I think the block reward was 50 Bitcoins. Yeah. And it was quite easy. You could do it with your computer processor. No GPU is in a way sick,
Donald McIntyre (00:43:39):
Hardly any cost in electricity, 4,000, a thousand Bitcoins divided by 50, 20 blocks, 20 blocks. If you mined 20 blocks, you would have…
Vlad Costea (00:43:59):
I guess at the time you had to be either very idealistic or actually understand the technology. And even today, if you make me read the white paper, I can understand the ideas behind it, but the mathematics and, or the computer science part, where it describes the hashes and how data is, read it into blocks. That’s too much for me.
Donald McIntyre (00:44:25):
Yeah. Why now, what I, what I say about that is that Bitcoin is first about behavior and evolutionary game theory and biology and cryptography and engineering second.
Vlad Costea (00:44:39):
How would you define Bitcoin as a biological invention?
Donald McIntyre (00:44:47):
Um again, going back to who humans 3 million years ago first of all, all of these ideas, they started in my mind because, because because of working with and reading Nick Szabo know, Nick Szabo wrote Nick Szabo is a brilliant person. Not only, not only because of what he has written into them, but the way he thinks within the cypherpunks, I think he’s must have been a very unique member of the cypherpunks because the way he thinks is that for example, with when and in may, we’ll talk about money in the case of Tom, on privacy and Liberty, and to creating a space for Liberty online, using cryptography, Nick, instead of saying, okay, I like those ideas and working on top of them, normally what he does is that
Donald McIntyre (00:45:49):
Nick Szabo says “I like those ideas. I am going to read history, human history. I’m going to research how human behavior works. It’s ethnography, biology, etc… Why privacy is important in the first place and the history in the last thousand years and why property is important and why agreements is important. He even went to college in, in the two thousands like in 2005, 2006, he went to college just to study law, just to understand contracts more, more to understand contracts, more to be able to come back and to keep on designing smart contracts and all that. So that way of thinking and that dedication, that he’s, he has is incredible. So from there, that attitude, and when I read, when I read “Shelling out” where he explains money, where he did all of this, that I just, you did all this. And he said, okay, Chaum says that we need online money and privacy.
Donald McIntyre (00:46:48):
I read everything about money and the history of money. And now I understand why, and this is the shelling out or the origin of money in that, in that now going back to why I think I’m in that paper shelling out Nick Szabo not only talks about money for, I was formerly fined by economists, but then he goes further and he said, and he, and he goes in history to see how money was used in the past, by, by our ancestors. And last 10,000 years, he studies a Thumper fee. So he goes, he goes
Donald McIntyre (00:47:30):
Local tribes from original information, for example, the URAC in Northern California, how they use money thousands of years ago it was shell money. A, I think they’re called them teens or something like that. It’s a, it’s a specialist field that they got from further North in Ireland and in in front of Uber. And then he studied re history because if, if money today is fat and before it was gold and before it was shells, then if you go and keep going backwards doing the regression analysis, you’re gonna reach a point where it, where the origin was. And Nick found that in, for example, in North America, when the Europeans came there were using one boom, which was his belt. And then in South America, the Incas, they were using clothing and, and, and in in Africa and the middle East and China that were using like a Flint, no like Knights and points made of stone.
Donald McIntyre (00:48:41):
And, and, and when he saw that, he said, okay, money’s about trust minimization. If economists say that money is used to, to instead of bark to change money or a product. And before that money was a commodity, I can see that if planes hell’s fault and all these forms of money, where commodities is and as many, there, there is a connection there and, and regression then after that, he I know then what he said is then this is about trust. At the same time, he studied that the brain is limited and we only have capacity to have trust, trust, full relationships between 150 people, more or less us, and 150 people. That means that groups in the past, when they reached either act with larger groups or other groups, they were normally not trusted. So evidently they must have used money as a bridge between the two untrusting groups, because money settled the transactions immediately, and you needed, you didn’t need any trust. So that’s how I think Nick came to the conclusion that money was a trust minimization device. And that I think already was parallel to things that he had already studied, which was that in computer systems. And what cypherpunks were trying to do is to actually reduce the influence of the trusted third party. So there was a link between money and trusted. The third parties, money is a device to reduce trust in others, cryptography and decentralized computing is a device
Donald McIntyre (00:50:28):
To reduce first and others. The security hole are the trusted third party. How is it linked to biology in the same paper? Nick does a citation of Richard Dawkins and his explanation of reciprocal, reciprocal altruism in social animals. And that means that when an animal does something for the other, it is studied and confirmed. And it’s a fact that it’s because they have the expectation that other one is going to do something for them. And the payoff in the longterm is that their genes are going to be more successful in the future on average. So this is connected to our biology because evidently in the past, at some point in the past, when we, we don’t see that animals use money, only humans use money. So we were, we were interacted into roofs, but we need device to interact with other groups because we didn’t, we didn’t share genes.
Donald McIntyre (00:51:39):
So there was no interest. We actually wanted the other groups to disappear because they were competitors. So it is very possible that when we created the first stone tools, 3.3 million years ago, this is my theory. You know, we failed value. We evolved in our brains, the capacity to feel subjective value or those tools, not only because of their physical use or functional use but also extra value, just holding them and for their shape, for example, because of that subjective feeling of value for tools that we evolved. And the others also evolved in time when, when Alice meets Bob 3 million years ago and they didn’t trust each other, but Alice had meet and Bob didn’t have anything Alice would say, Hey, but in your head, in your hand, you have a stone tool. Maybe you can give me your stone tool and I’ll give you the meat that you need.
Donald McIntyre (00:52:50):
If not, I’m not going to do anything with you because I don’t trust you that you’re going to reciprocate and you don’t have my jeans. So I, I’m not interested in your jeans to being perpetuated. So, so maybe at that point the other one said, okay, I’ll give you my stone tool. And he gave me the meat that was enabled. And that was the first time probably that money was used in a, in a very archaic way. And that’s the connection to our biology in terms of biologists, because we evolved genetically to feel subjected value for objects other than their function. And then the connection to money is that they, they, they were used once we felt that subjective value, we would accept that to cancel a debt immediately. So we would use it in exchange for other things. I don’t know if it was too confused.
Vlad Costea (00:53:50):
This is actually fascinating. And I don’t think, even though I read the article by Nick Szabo, I don’t think I thought about it in these terms, I guess this outline of all the ideas, because as you know, the articles are pretty long and sometimes it’s easy to get lost in the ideas or maybe for a while and just think about it.
Donald McIntyre (00:54:14):
Yeah. I always say, I always say, and I tell Nick that I have to read his articles like 30 times, because there’s so much information in each page on each paragraph. And I tell other people that it’s great to read Nick Szabo’s articles, because one article is like six months of university courses. They have so much information.
Vlad Costea (00:54:36):
Oh yes. And in a way, that’s the advantage of quality reading. If you find something which is filled with information and you have the power to process it, I don’t think, I don’t think it’s easy to read something on the, on a numerated, his blog, but once you get at least to understand some important concepts at first, when I discovered it, I was overwhelmed a lot of people in the space, they like to brag about how they read it and how they were influenced and how it makes sense to them. And they understood the ideas and they apply that to some project that they are working on. Yeah. But when I first discovered it, it was overwhelming. It’s not just like an everyday blog where you find short posts, which outline the ideas in plain language, the way anyone can understand it’s actually pretty scientific. And that actually makes you wonder why was this not published in some kind of color journal, because I’ve read academic papers, which are much, much worse and void of any meaning. They just use the scientific lingo and jargon to sound smart, but they don’t say anything of substance.
Donald McIntyre (00:55:59):
They just repeat the buzz words, like trust minimization, social scalability and, and stuff like that. Unforeseeable scarcity unforeseeable costliness and other the terms that Nick uses or trusted third parties are security holes, many terminology that Nick has created and use this in any blog posts and papers. Yes. A lot of people use them just, just to give the impression that they are deep deeply knowledgeable of what Nick writes and blockchain in general, like using blockchain as a, as a term in itself or AI, we, the normally humans, we like to use like these things as buzz words for personal marketing or for marketing of our project. Yeah. But I agree with you that that doesn’t necessarily, they actually either understand in some cases or either believe also in the principle. Yeah, in my case, I, I don’t, I can’t claim that I understand, but I can claim that what I understand from not only from Nick Szabo, but from Tim May with whom I had a lot of interaction in the last three years Elaine Ou, another thinker Hal Finney or Wei Dai.
Donald McIntyre (00:57:33):
When you read all these things from cypherpunks it’s incredible. And I read them many times sometimes the same thing, many times, for example, Satoshi Nakamoto the Bitcoin whitepaper. I read it at least 30 times. And and what I do just as a person, personal methodology, when, when I find a point that I don’t understand, that’s where I go. And I turn into this amateur scientists and I start doing the research by myself. So, so Nick when, when, when it talks, when he talks about money, he talks about millennia thousands of years and stuff like that. And he talks about specific forms of money that are proven to have been used as money, not like points, flits, fault a black pepper one in North America, sea shells in Northern California, it’s he proves everything and he uses papers and he cites papers. I said to the speculative area and, and I went, and I am currently speculating that the first it’s don’t tools were used were created people in 3 million years ago, it’s called the lomequi industry. And maybe those for very rudimentary were only used as, as, as for their function now for cutting, for breaking bones of animals. So they could eat the, the thing in the middle. I don’t remember the name in English. And, and, and, and for eating more meat, which helped us increase our brain, therefore living larger groups,
Donald McIntyre (00:59:22):
Which later led to this world with huge bias. But I think that later homo habilis that were was, was like 2.3 million years ago. The tools that they made were much more elaborate. They’re called the although one industry. And you can see that the state and the aesthetics of the tools are not only for cutting in my opinion, and when homework, and then homo erectus, like 1.5, 1.8 million years ago, they created another industry called the Australian industry, which is incredible, incredibly sophisticated, because they did by faces is that of one pace. They worked the rock much more instead of just, I think, blinked and using the edge over Flint to cut. They actually created incredible shapes. When you see on, you can Google a shooting industry, you can see many any of these tools and they made huge amounts of them.
Donald McIntyre (01:00:29):
And not only that, they went to special places to make them, they, they had like a division like an economy, I would say there were a specific places where they got special rock for their, for their tools. It seems that they were highly specialized. Some groups of homoerectus were highly specialized. They got the stones, they, they, the, the raw stone, they worked it, they cut them into chorus from the core. They cut that and, and they created the Julian tools. When you see them, the images they’re incredible, very, very beautiful. They made a lot of quantities in the places where they make them, you don’t find bones or anything else other than that they may, however, they are a spread and, and the regions, you have ashes of stone. Sometimes they find up to 200 stones unused of these stone tools.
Donald McIntyre (01:01:29):
I mean, when I say stones, I mean, acheulean tools all stack together organized because there was a erosion or, or earthquake hit that, but they’re all together in one place as if it was a bank in my that’s what I speculate themes that they made them in one place. Somehow they go to the hands of other groups. I don’t think it was the same groups and put them in different places, fast in stashes as if they were like a treasure. And they never used them. That means to me, it’s similar to gold and Bitcoin, you put them in a vault or in a very safe place and just keep it there. And, and, and some of them in other places like cage, et cetera, you can see that the tools were used and you find them together with bones and stuff like that. So
Donald McIntyre (01:02:20):
It seems some anthropologists are noticing that there’s like a cycle of the life cycle of these tools, where they went from one place than to another place they were stored. Then they were used in another place. But when they were used, they only find two or three, they don’t find 500, 200 or 150. So that seems to me if, when I extrapolate what I read from Nick and what he discovered of the history of money and all the, all this connection to biology that maybe it’s not only 50,000, a hundred thousand or 200,000 years old, maybe money is 3 million years old, or at least with homoerectus 1.8 million years old. So that’s what I’m doing.
Vlad Costea (01:03:07):
Yeah. You have some quite peculiar fascinations, which are even more fascinating when you stare at them and you talk about them. I like the concise and compressed way in which it was presented. I guess not many people who listen to this podcast will actually go and read the articles, but that’s fine. After they have listened to it, they will have learned something new.
Donald McIntyre (01:03:36):
Yes, absolutely. I recommend people if they’re interested in going even further back. I’m not saying that Nick doesn’t think there’s, maybe he thinks it, but as a, as a scientist, I think that he only writes what he can prove actually, and he can reference them. I am, I am free to speculate and write all these things that I do. And, and on social media is a speculative explanations because I’m not a scientist. And I don’t, I don’t want to pretend that I, that I am a someone that has everything, everything proven, just my, my, in my mind, when I read all of these papers from anthropologists and ethnographers. And then when I see their studies of own tools in the past, and in parallel, when, when you see all the anthropology of the evolution of homo now starting with australopithecus and then homo, and then homoerectus, which was, they were alive or between 1.8 and a hundred thousand years ago.
Donald McIntyre (01:04:42):
So it was a very successful variation of our species and then homo heidelbergensis. And that, that, that line gave rise to Neanderthals and homo sapiens. I, when I w the more I read and the more I associated with Nick Szabo’s writings, the more I see that a system like Bitcoin is totally related and totally analogous to all human behavior in the last 3 million years. Maybe I’m doing the connections artificially in my mind, but I actually, I actually go point by point, I read papers, I watch videos. I mean, all these anthropologists there they’re all over or YouTube because there are national geographic are incredible people, incredible scientists. And then the other line of, of reading that I do is to confirm everything with biology as well. When I went, when, when I, when I say biology, I mean genetics, I read, for example, the book origin of species by Charles Darwin.
Donald McIntyre (01:05:51):
And then I read the selfish gene by Richard Dawkins, those two books, I recommend everybody to use because they provide the full evolution is a fact, and Darwin gave the top down explanation of his observations in the 18 hundreds. And Charles Dawkins explained bottom up how evolution works from the genes, from the level of the gene. And then there’s another author called a scientists, all the John Maynard Smith that he died in early 2000, I think 2004, but he wrote the paper all the logic of animal conflict, where he, where I found the connection with biology in the sense that he found. And he was the first, the person who invented or he connected game theory. And he transformed. He transformed it into evolutionary game. Theory is incredible and very useful to analyze a model system. But what he realized is that when, to, when to rivals in the same species and social animals would encounter each other even though they hated each other, they didn’t trust each other.
Donald McIntyre (01:07:10):
And they had the tools like the jaw, the fans, it take that out to kill each other. They don’t, they didn’t fight. They would find each other. They do, but they, maybe they will do some act, some, some acting out of a aggression, and then they will, they would leave. And that was a puzzle in biology. And what he discovered is that territory devices like territory, or who came first, or who’s larger, and who’s smaller where conflict minimization device. And he wrote that in that paper. And you can see videos of YouTube, all the logic about the logic of conflict. So he solved the puzzle because he said, okay, if two bears, two male bears are piping for the same resource would be a female, or it could be food and they encounter each other. They have the tools, why don’t they actually fight them?
Donald McIntyre (01:08:10):
One kills the other and get the female or get the resource when it’s, they first, it is very costly for both to engage in that fight. So even if you win and the other one dies and you win, you still may have lost a lot of, or incurred in a, in a very high cost just by fighting and the risk to your life and with the wounds and all that, just to get whatever pay off you were, you were looking for. So that, that, that, that’s the first arc of the logic. The second part of the logic is then how do you break the symmetry if, if two bears and counter, and they’re competing for the same resource, what decides, who wins? And he discovered that, for example, if, if one of the bears was there first in all of the cases or the great majority of the cases, the one who came second would be the one that loses in other species.
Donald McIntyre (01:09:08):
It’s just territory. When one, when one, when one individual comes and realizes there’s a resource, but realize this at the same time that it’s already a Mark territory by another equivalent or similar individual, the one that is not the owner of the territory leaves. So that was for me, incredible, an incredible finding, because that explains money. And that explains private property, for example, in, in between humans. Why, why don’t I go, why don’t I go in front to, to my neighbor’s house and steal their beer? For example, if I want beer, because first I’m going to incur a cost because the other guy’s also going to hit me back. And the other one is because my brain has evolved to accept private property as a conflict negotiation device. If you extend that you reach to a point where we evolved to use money as a compliment invitation device, the reason why I go to a store, and instead of stealing, I give them money is because it’s much less costly for me and for the store owner to engage in that kind of transaction than be stealing from each other all the time. So that’s, that’s what I recommend to read all these things. And that’s the connection of biology that I do. That’s
Vlad Costea (01:10:34):
Extremely fascinating. And when you think about it, Bitcoin uses a similar game theory, which I think that’s the revolutionary part, because I guess the programming and the underlying protocol is not so difficult in terms of computer science, or at least though I heard, because I’m not one to evaluate this. I don’t have the competence, but the true innovation which came with it was this situation in which every participant had much more to win if he or she was to play by the rules of the system to actually try. So this is a resolution or a way in which the Eisenstein problem, the problem of the Byzantine generals got stalled.
Donald McIntyre (01:11:24):
Yes. Yeah. The there’d be something, a General’s problem was solved because proof of proof of work proves that the whole natural court at the same time in the same message, because it’s the only way that masses could be created because probabilistically, if only three generals were working, they will take much more than 10 minutes. But the cypherpunks, I mean, I, what you said before that Bitcoin is exactly all days, all these things. I totally believe in that. I think that Bitcoin is first about anthropology, biology, conflict, minimization, economic behavior, evolution, game theory, it’s all those things first. And then cypherpunks were so brilliant that they implemented everything using cryptography. And they’re so brilliant. That Satoshi, for example, and, and using Nick Szabo and Hal Finney as his influences, they created Bitcoin replicating all these things. And I think that they basically replicated human behavior of the last, at least 3 million years.
Donald McIntyre (01:12:31):
And not only that, but it’s successful Bitcoin it’s, if you think about it, it’s just an input, a number in some electronic place. It doesn’t have any intrinsic value. It’s just something that we value because it was very costly to make. And it is very scarce, scarce, and therefore we can use it just as a stone tool 3 million years ago, or just assault a thousand years ago in Italy, or maybe just as black pepper in India, or as as these special woven, close it with Incas to exchange it base. The other person also values that because it’s a conflict minimization device, because the unit that you can move it between people, a cancelled trust. So you don’t need trust and gain products from that in a much less costly way than going, fighting everywhere, like camps today, when you, when you, when you see today, they still have the old model.
Donald McIntyre (01:13:36):
They only live in very small groups up to 50 or 60 or 70. And to interact with other groups, they only kill each other or they’re separated, but there’s no trading. There’s no favors. There’s not only all those things. Reciprocity protection grooming, et cetera. It’s all within the group. They never do it outside of the group. I think that our, our invention as humans we have in this case, the back 4 million years ago was first bipedalism to, to stand up. And then I think that if the other way around our brains are big, because it’s prove that there was a fresher who acting larger groups, people say it the other way around. They say that first and big, and then we could interact in larger groups. I think it’s the other way around the pressure was because we need it to survive. We needed to interact in larger groups, and that’s why the brain had to grow. And that’s why we needed to eat. Because when, when you are vegetarian, those, these like changes data. They need huge guts and huge stomach and smaller brain because the brain uses a lot of energy. So we had to eat meat just to enable our brain to be bigger. And our brain had to be bigger because we needed to interact in groups. If not, we would die.
Vlad Costea (01:15:06):
You’re making me feel bad right now for being a vegetarian. But yeah, why not? What I just told you, it’s the basis for a lot of carnivories
Donald McIntyre (01:15:16):
In, in the Bitcoin space and Bitcoin Bitcoin maximalist. But I don’t think that they, they do all those connections. What they’re doing is that they’re just a pragmatically saying, yes, we evolved to eat meat. Meat is stage three and very healthy.
Vlad Costea (01:15:34):
Okay. So when I think about this situation of Satoshi and Nick Szabo, I think about the situation that we had with Stan and lighten it. They both had similar discoveries in different parts of the world. We don’t know if Satoshi is American or Japanese or from any other part, but one ended up becoming famous and getting cited and being the symbol of innovation. Whereas the other ended up just being there. And I feel like God got, you know, the worst deal of the situation because his implementation of BitGold, which I’m not sure if it ever worked, but it was so similar and that he was so close to achieving the same technological prowess and somebody else just took all that study and all that research and put into practice something which maybe was obvious to an outside observer. I don’t know if I were him, I’d be furious things to be okay with the idea that somebody else did it.
Donald McIntyre (01:16:52):
My observation is that Nick is extremely supportive of Bitcoin and blockchains in general, they, they achieve all the goals that he had, he had been working on all of the cypherpunks for 30 years. And even though it had different design that big old Satoshi like all cypherpunks, any good scientists, they credit always there they’re there. The people who came before them now, and the people who, who created the systems that reseeded them, no. So Satoshi formally said that he was inspired by BitGold of next elbow and our power RPOW by Hal Finney. And in, in the white paper, he also credited the Adam Back who created the proof of work system, which is the central key, I think. And then he credited Wei Dai who had written in 1999, a similar system as Bitcoin now with notes and ledger and stuff like that.
Vlad Costea (01:17:55):
Why don’t we know so much about Wei Dai?
Donald McIntyre (01:18:01):
I think that I dunno, I never thought about that, but I think that he’s very reserved. He doesn’t want to appear in many places and participate in the community. I don’t know if he even uses Bitcoin, for example, when, when, when I used to interact with Tim May, he, sometimes he, he said that he hated not really that he hated Bitcoin, but he hated all the people around it and all that, and, and never bought Bitcoin. He said, in an interview and stuff like that. So the fact that you are a cypherpunk, that doesn’t mean that they, that they own Bitcoin. But I, I don’t weigh that. And then the only piece that I have read of Wei Dai is just b-money is I haven’t read, or haven’t seen reference to other work of him.
Vlad Costea (01:18:55):
No, he’s very obscure, but you had this unique privilege to get, to meet Tim May and he passed last month. It was unexpected and unfortunate that it happened. Yes. What was he really like? I only read an interview. And when she spoke about Bitcoin and she was disappointed in the ways that it was just turning into a new PayPal, centralized exchanges during KYC and AML. So yeah, yeah.
Donald McIntyre (01:19:26):
Went out not Bitcoin itself, but that the coin is in a lab where like, PayPal’s Bitcoin is Bitcoin itself. Is it safe? You know? Yeah, but what he wrote, for example, he gave an interview and when I look it up on YouTube that is very good. I recommend you to watch it or listen to it. With JW weatherman, look it up on YouTube, JW Weatherman an interview with Tim May.
Donald McIntyre (01:20:03):
And then he wrote the 10 year article on CoinDesk. That was a request of Coinbase CoinDesk that they asked me to write something about Bitcoin, the 10 year anniversary. And it’s a long article and exactly what he says in that article and exactly what he says in the video, which is a one hour interview is exactly what he used to say. When I interacted with him the things that he liked in Bitcoin, the things that didn’t like, that he had no Bitcoin, because he didn’t find the real value. For him personally, that he had stocks and gold and stuff like that, but he didn’t have it because he didn’t, he didn’t need to transfer it across borders. He just lived in wherever he lived in the U S and he didn’t need it for more. That’s, that’s I think that I find that is a very strong characteristic in cypherpunks.
Donald McIntyre (01:21:05):
Now the ones that I know, I know Tim, Nick, Elaine. And when I, when I read how Finney, they, they are always very, not skeptical, but very down to earth. They’re not like normal humans like us, that we get excited about Bitcoin, and we start dreaming of the future. They just look at things the way they are they’re bound to earth. And they only talk about things that they can prove they’re very rational. And I think that Tim May was exactly like that very rational. And whenever he had to be skeptical, he was skeptical. And I think it was also a way of bribing the rest of the group to be more concise and thorough in what they were doing. For example, if he was skeptical about Bitcoin, it’s like having a, like a paternal figure or a fatherly figure that is never, that tells the son or the daughter that he’s never satisfied with what they do. So the son and the daughter are trying to be better all the time. So I think that’s sometimes I thought that he played that role when communicating now always being skeptical and whatever people did was not enough to satisfy. So people have to go back and work even more like, like a son and a daughter who was trying to prove to their parents that they’re better, you know?
Vlad Costea (01:22:35):
Yeah. But that’s always productive.
Donald McIntyre (01:22:38):
Vlad Costea (01:22:40):
But it makes me wonder why, why was it not David Chaum, who was that father figure for everybody who was involved in the idea of digital money and cryptocurrencies?
Donald McIntyre (01:22:54):
I don’t know. I don’t go as far back as the eighties when Chaum was, was the strongest player., Fortunately, he’s now back so amazing. I was a little bit disappointed that what he promises is like the ones that we don’t like, no, he promises with Elixxir, his new system. He promises for privacy will scalability, full security global and a hundred million transactions per second. So that was disappointing. But many were very happy that he’s back. And he has a, I think he has a really strong emphasis in privacy rather than the fundamentals of money as Bitcoin.
Vlad Costea (01:23:42):
Yeah. But how is it privacy? Because as far as I could see the way of signing up for Elixxir, there was fill in a form in which you had to give away your name and address and you know, all the KYC requirements.
Donald McIntyre (01:23:57):
I dunno. So I dunno, I didn’t even pay attention to when, when they promised the, the, the typical three things, scalability, performance, and, and privacy, everything in the same place update, paying attention. I do the same with many others. Not I, that doesn’t mean that I don’t respect the chairman and biggest work. And that doesn’t mean that he actually discovered all these things. Maybe he has a new system that we can’t think about that that is very that’s all, it’s everything at the same time.
Vlad Costea (01:24:31):
If there’s anything that I’ve learned in my 26, then almost 27 years of life is that we should never underestimate the elders. They can always surprise us. We look at them and say, Oh, well, so what can you do? You’re so old, you can barely move. And I doubt that you can come up with anything intelligent or anything that improves what we think is good and it’s their stubbornness. And it’s their idea that they stick to something which was the norm back in their day, that enables them to come up with something that we, as a newer generation wouldn’t have conceived.
Donald McIntyre (01:25:14):
Yeah, absolutely. I agree with that. I agree also. And I think it’s totally natural for the younger generations to be skeptical of the older generation. That’s also a healthy, because if not, they will stick to the old stuff all the time and never invent anything. But yeah, well, all these dynamics are interesting,
Vlad Costea (01:25:36):
But that’s how the cypherpunks came around. That’s why they were called cypher punks. They were a new generation, which opposed the older norms. And they wanted to build a world for themselves in which cryptography was the norm for doing fractions.
Donald McIntyre (01:25:55):
Vlad Costea (01:25:55):
I’m not sure. I cannot think of projects which were successful outside of Bitcoin. They did have attempt,
Donald McIntyre (01:26:04):
But they all came short. Two, one way door four comes from cypherpunks the Tor network. And then the movie network, what’s the name of the one that where you move files will be files. Then Wikileaks, the leader wasn’t then then poor is that net private network where everything is encrypted. And the one that where you move your ear movies so bad with names, file sharing peer to peer file sharing when there’s a system. So they invented many, many things that led to Bitcoin. Now, peer to peer technology and other stuff. I think that may be the most high profile now is Bitcoin. And I think that one of the reasons, if not, the main reason is because people can BitTorrent. Bittorrent is the one that I was thinking. I think Victorian also comes from a cypherpunk. And when I was saying Bitcoin is very high profile because people can get rich and that’s motivation for everybody to pay attention, right?
Vlad Costea (01:27:32):
Because in the end, that’s what we care most you window. I guess some inventions like BitTorrent are much more influential or at least leading up to Bitcoin. They allowed us to send files in a way that could not be intervene with, like in the case of Napster or add other applications that we had in the nineties and early two thousands and that, and after dependent sufficiently and assent a centralized third party, to be able to be closed by the government also mega upload, which was another website on, which was very easy.
Donald McIntyre (01:28:16):
They just made a raid. They did a raid and New Zealand and that’s it.
Vlad Costea (01:28:21):
Now the founders is going to be in prison for life. I think.
Donald McIntyre (01:28:26):
Decentralization in a way it’s a conflict minimization device. As, as I explained before, because you know, you know, when Wei Dai wrote that he liked Tim May’s concept of cryptography and the community, and forced for protected by cryptography where, where government was not present, but violence was not present, but not because it was stopped, but because violence was not useful in the first place, because to break her cryptography requests so much energy that in itself is a conflict minimization device.
Donald McIntyre (01:29:10):
For example, if you want to go to from point A to point B and there’s nothing in between, you just go in a straight line. If you go from point A to point B, and there’s a huge wall, you have to go through the cost of going around the wall and then going to point B the wall can be a conflict minimization device, because if it’s sufficiently big the wall Mount and whatever, and all, whatever could be a natural feature. It’s so big that you’re going to say, okay, I’m not going to even try to go to point B when I’m not good, I’m not gonna even try me. I’m gonna spend my energy in something else. So the, the thing in the middle of whatever, constituted a block or the obstacle is a conflict minimization device in the sense that the individual is always measuring reality, to see how to reach their goals with the least expenditure of energy possible, or with the least cost possible.
Donald McIntyre (01:30:15):
So when you impose a cost that cost, if it’s effective and well design actually changes behavior of the individual. So the other individuals when I lost, I lost my line of thought. I don’t know why I was telling you this. What is.
Vlad Costea (01:30:34):
You were saying something about the relationship between Tim May and Wei Dai, I guess.
New Speaker (01:30:42):
So Wei Dai. What he said is that like the concept of Tim May had had explained, which is a place where people have rights and property and agreements and interact between each other, where violent violence is not present because violence is not useful at all. It’s not even worthwhile attempting because who break crack cryptography with regards to so much energy.
Vlad Costea (01:31:10):
New Speaker (01:31:11):
And that’s, and that’s the concept of Bitcoin people. I, I’m not stealing your Bitcoins and not because it’s not possible, but I could, I could try to steal your Bitcoins, but it’s so costly to steal them. I mean, to reverse your private key is so costly. It will take all the computers in the world, a million years of computing hour. You just break your key. So I’m not going to go through that path. The most, like some people are saying the least costly path is to actually feel your, your, your, your private key. So that’s why private key a security so important. So what I’m saying is, is this is the first step in this cypherpunk utopia where or ideal where at least money with Bitcoin is as secure as Wei Dai and Tim May. Right?
Vlad Costea (01:32:11):
I actually have another question for you. And I know this is called the Bitcoin takeover, and we’re supposed to talk about the King of cryptocurrencies, but I’m often confused when I talk about Ethereum
Speaker 4 (01:32:25):
Vlad Costea (01:32:26):
I think the narrative about it has shifted so many times it was the world computer. Then it was a way for people to print their own money and establish incentives in the form of tokens. So this let’s do an ICO machine, and then it was a smart contract platform. Yeah. And it had all these buzzwords and ways of being rebranded and to something else. But it’s, it’s hard for me to comprehend sometimes what is the primal needs that it tries to solve?
Donald McIntyre (01:33:05):
I work for Ethereum classic, which is the original Ethereum. Ethereum without Ethereum classic after it is the fork of Ethereum classic. I was part of a community in 2014 when everything started. And yes, I used the buzz words like world computer and ether is oil and stuff like that. In my case, I used those things first because at the time I was learning about all of these technologies and, and how they work. And so, so I didn’t have everything so clear in my mind. And second, because it’s very useful to create at least some buzz words and explanations that are easy to understand for the rest of the public. Now, for example, an, a buzzword or a terminology that simplification that is used for Bitcoin is digital gold, many Bitcoin people say digital goal. It’s just a, it’s just an analogy that you do so that others who are new find it easier to understand in the case of of Ethereum Classic. I think it’s, it is, it is correct to say that it’s about decentralized computer computing. Whether it’s a decentralized computer is not the same, because my laptop that I have in front of me is a Mac and it’s incredible capacity and speed and performance. And Ethereum Classic is slower, it’s like a really is truly like a small device in 1999 in terms of computing power speed. So, so it’s not really the world computer that that’s a marketing device. It’s it’s, it’s only decentralized secure,
Donald McIntyre (01:34:58):
Decentralized computing network. And it’s very inefficient because it’s the same, the same principles as Bitcoin and it’s and very costly that means that a transaction costs, I don’t know, 1 cent or 2 cents or something like that, whether in my computer is much less than that. And in the future when Ethereum Classic grows and it, and it’s because of its limited capacity, as more people use it, the transaction fee is going to go even higher and I could go $50 or a hundred dollars. And that’s why everything needs to be built on top site. In terms of the, the attitude of, of, of using marketing words. It’s after that, I think there’s like a spectrum of people, someone like me, I use marketing words. I am a marketing person, and I understand that to communicate many difficult things. You have to simplify them and use terminology like world computer and, and it’s oil, not digital goal to differentiate from Bitcoin and stuff like that.
Donald McIntyre (01:36:02):
But at the same time, I acknowledged that there’s people, other people that use it just for inflating their projects and, and, and and, and selling their projects. And there there’s even further in the, in the spectrum. There’s people that are directly scammers that use all that terminology and, and idealistic use. And, and and sometimes they use scientific papers and all that to, to, to explain them just your money from others. So I, I have acknowledged that that has happened on primarily on Ethereum, but the, the group that was like that in the original Ethereum, which is if you’re in plastic, we were all together. When, when they hear him split, 90% of the community went with that. I also went with that group, at least until 19 until 2018, that group, they were very focused on marketing and social things like, like equality for people in the world and stuff like that.
Donald McIntyre (01:37:11):
And, and on selling all this marketing jargon people like, and then, and then they are the same ones who promoted ICOs in 2017. In my case, I stayed for three years. I’m not saying that I am a great person or anything like that. The saying that within the group, I was, I was the voice that I was always fighting for them not to be so focused on social issues and not so focused on scaling fast and innovating so fast. But I was trying to convince them to be more focused on security. So I was against proof of stake against sharding against
Donald McIntyre (01:37:56):
The DAO hard fork. That was a huge fight. And I was a very little minority. I didn’t stay with Ethereum classic, although I supported the theorem classic, and I traded Ethereum classic every now and then because I thought that the other side had the network effects, but then in, in 2018, when Coinbase decided to list it, then I, then I definitely moved to plastic and I’m fighting for Ethereum Classic to grow and it’s totally aligned with my, my beliefs. But in terms of why all these buzzwords and Imperium and the ICOs and all that I, yes, I agree that I was part of it and we were inflating things a lot.
Vlad Costea (01:38:41):
So how does Ethereum classic supplement what Bitcoin already offers?
Donald McIntyre (01:38:48):
The reason? One of the reason is that Bitcoin is very limited.
Donald McIntyre (01:38:53):
You can only move money from point a to point B and that’s it, and store it store value. Anything on top of Bitcoin, that is not the model of channels, like like lightning network, which is amazing. It’s not trust, minimize yet. You need a, for example, liquid it’s a side chain and rootstock RSK is another side chain on Bitcoin, and they both need a Federation. They both need 20, 25 private companies to be the, know the big notes in the network to secure the network who hold the money you want on one side and two, the positive on the other, and then to move it back. So evidently that doesn’t work. It’s not, not what we’re looking for. They’re just a glorified, trusted third party. What, Ethereum classic offers is that it is Bitcoin in the, in, in the basic principles and proof of work limited the same like a fixed monetary policy ethos of immutability, minimizing force, as much as possible.
Donald McIntyre (01:39:59):
Everything is exactly the same. The only difference is that it has to incompleteness integrated into the base layer. So it’s, it’s a currency. And also has to incompleteness doing completeness is basically the ability to store and run full programs, software programs, which Bitcoin cannot do. And the solution that classic brings is exactly that that has to incomplete. So it can run store and run software programs. And that’s why these programs, because the network is decentralized. Once you store them, they become decentralized just that, like when you, when you have a Bitcoin and Bitcoin, it’s a decentralized Bitcoin, a software program, and Ethereum classic is a decentralized software. So that’s the only difference. And does that mean that Ethereum Classic replaces Bitcoin? No. No, because Bitcoin, I think it’s larger. It’s always going to be more secure because Ethereum classic is more complex, so it could have some security holes and glitches in the future and it needs upgrades, but more hardworking that Bitcoin does that mean that Bitcoin is the only answer and that Ethereum Classic should not exist?
Donald McIntyre (01:41:11):
No, not only because Ethereum classic as to incompleteness and the decentralized programs but also because I don’t think that the whole world 8 billion people in 50 years or 9 billion people are going to do and build all the systems only on top of one blockchain like Bitcoin. I think that they’re going to tend to diversify even if the other blockchain is not very secure or, or has at least a different security model. I think that people are going to diversify. So in my mind, I am guessing that they’re going to be four or five networks in the future. Bitcoin, Ethereum classic, maybe Monero, maybe Litecoin, and some other networks, maybe the other network could be actually a proof of stake network, even if it’s totally less secure, but it has a trade off of security, which network is going to be that if network in my mind, maybe it could be Ethereum, which is the leading one. And they’re going to move to proof of stake. Maybe it’s meant to be EOS, or maybe it’s meant to be Cardano. I don’t know.
Vlad Costea (01:42:23):
So let’s say 10 years from now, where do you see Ethereum classic and Bitcoin, not in terms of price, but in terms of adoption and in terms of achieving their proposed goals. And Bitcoin is trying to become more like sound money by allowing fungibility. Whereas Ethereum classic is trying to run as many decentralized applications and scale.
Donald McIntyre (01:42:50):
…For Which it needs, might sound money as well. So BTC as a currency is also found money, maybe a few degrees less than, than Bitcoin because of this complexity, but it’s also very sound money. That’s why it has the same monetary policy in the case of Bitcoin is going to have 21 million. In the case of Ethereum Classic is going to have 210 million. So it’s practically identical if you’re in classic because of its complexity and, and it needs a different form of creating blocks than, and it has uncle blocks. The range is not fixed at 210 million is 210 to 230 million. It depends on how the network behaves and the next 80 or a hundred years. So how do I see it in 10 years? I think that Bitcoin definitely is going in the path of success. I have like a very strong confidence that Bitcoin is going in the path to success, and it’s going to be
Donald McIntyre (01:43:52):
Exactly the vision that people have. Digital gold, high value transfers. Central banks are going to have the reserves in Bitcoin, all that is it’s going to be global free move around the world. I think that that vision is going to happen for it in the, in the case over here in classic. Unfortunately, although I am still very optimistic. This week we went through something that it was very like a strong blow to in plastic and the community. And that is because it is still small. It’s a half a billion dollar network, and it has also less hashing power than, and Bitcoin significantly less than Bitcoin and 20 times less than anterium the current Ethereum. There was there was 51% attack on, on the network. It didn’t break the network or anything, but the attacker could reverse transactions that is to create doubles.
Donald McIntyre (01:44:59):
And so that happened this week. I think it started in June. It definitely started January 5th when Coinbase suspended deposits and withdrawals when they, when they saw it. And then the sixth, we were the community, we were alerted and by Pierre Rochard and then the seventh Coinbase, both the four reports with everything that they saw, they, they stole more or less 220,000, etc. And there was a 21. So it wasn’t a breach of security internally of ETC, but it was a big miner that now disappeared but appeared for for three days. And they, and they created 15 double spends and they stole 220,000, etc. So that’s a problem for, for Ethereum classic because it’s small. So we kind of do much other than, than continue building the stack as we planned and to ask the whole world to use from 2,500 to 5,000 confirmations until we can minimize this attack.
Donald McIntyre (01:46:12):
And the other solution is just for a Ethereum classic to continue and, and to grow and to and to pick up, become as big as Bitcoin. For example, in that case, it’s going to be highly secure. Eh, you have to bear in mind that 51% the pack, any proof of work chain is vulnerable to that attack. Like Bitcoin is normal. The only, the only difference between big 20 year term classic that the here in plastic it’s, it’s much smaller. So the cost who performed the attack is much smaller as well, but both Ethereum and Bitcoin
Donald McIntyre (01:46:50):
Have the same security threshold of 51%. So they could go through the same thing, although it’s much less likely we have to as a, as a network ETC to get to that point where it is much less likely to attack. So my vision before this attack was that ETC was going to be worth more or less $5,000 in 10 years because of an analysis of, of the IOT industry comparisons to, to other systems on a amount of transactions that said that I’m doing that analysis on a unit economics basis people, the, the, a unit value for ETC of 5,000 in the case of but now that this attack happened this week, of course, we, I have to acknowledge that just by having the principles and the design that we have is not enough. We also need to scale in size more, more hashing power and the community has to be larger for the network itself to be secure.
Vlad Costea (01:48:07):
Okay. So ultimate
Vlad Costea (01:48:09):
The purpose of Ethereum classic, and in order to achieve its goal is to have this stronger and more advanced model of security. And that can all be, be guaranteed by a greater amount of hashing power, which secures the network. And I guess that will also happen as soon as
Vlad Costea (01:48:30):
Vlad Costea (01:48:31):
Completely switches to proof of stake. And there will be no more mining.
Speaker 4 (01:48:38):
Yeah, we, we speculate that when that happens, then the biggest network with that mining algorithm is going to be Ethereum classic. Normally when you’re the biggest network in that niche in proof of work, you are less vulnerable. And also believe, although all that hashing power that is currently mining, if ETH may move or lead a big portion to ETC, because it’s meant to be the, the biggest network in that niche. And ETH it may happen because ETH moved to proof of stake, or it may happen because ETH moved to another PoW algorithm, because with a socialist mentality, they’re trying to minimize basics. So they’re analyzing to move to programmatic proof of work, broken PoW, and they’re modifying their monetary policy again from three to two per block. So doing everything wrong. Yeah.
Vlad Costea (01:49:50):
That’s your opinion. If you ask Vlad Zamfir, a fellow Romanian, he is going to say that it’s the most brilliant governance system ever conceived and research.
Donald McIntyre (01:50:05):
And, and, and, and I saw the other day that Nick Johnson was a core developer at Ethereum classic, he did a poll thing, like in a way, like to trash ETC. He said, if there were double spends in, in Ethereum, would you reverse the double spends? Yes or no? And I saw that more than 50% voted. Yes. They would reverse the double spends, which is something that would never happen on ETC. So that, so that shows that they’re a very different culture there I’m hearing. Yes.
Donald McIntyre (01:50:40):
But if I recall correctly this summer, there was this discussion about once again, hard forking
Vlad Costea (01:50:51):
Vlad Costea (01:50:51):
Some people who got scammed in ICOs.
Donald McIntyre (01:50:54):
Yeah. They talk about that all the time. Fortunately, there are some people in their community that are stopping it, but I think that some point in the future it’s going to be, it’s going to happen. Imagine one of the companies that lost a hundred million dollars, they are 150 is Parity technology. And by the technologies, the founder is Gavin Wood. And he’s one of the founders of if you’re in foundation and if you’re here, he wrote the yellow paper. He’s very influential. And, and in the past, ETH has shown then that when there is influential people with an opinion, or with a need that they’re going to read, there are going to satisfy that need, for example, without art form. So yeah, I think it’s going to happen when they move to proof of stake. Something, some point in, in some hard work they’re going to leap in the reimbursement to all those people.
Vlad Costea (01:51:52):
That’s always possible. There is only this possibility that once you do something, it creates a precedent in everything. And you have proven that it’s possible. You have showed the world that you are willing to do it. And under the necessary amount of pressure you will most likely given and do it once again.
Donald McIntyre (01:52:16):
Exactly. And not only that, but not only because you did it because for behavior ever since has been totally consistent, for example, will be proof of stake, creating sharding having all of these debates about changing changing the core protocol all the time, changing the monetary policy, that’s all consistent with the someone that’s with a sufficient sufficiently strong will or, or argument. If they tell them
Vlad Costea (01:52:46):
Who to reverse the chain, they’re going to do it again. All of their behavior is consistent. Yeah. Lucky. Luckily, I don’t think we’ll have any hard forks in Bitcoin, unless maybe they want to get rid of SHA 256, their mining algorithm. If it gets broken, they will need to hard fork, then switch to something else.
Donald McIntyre (01:53:09):
And I think that’s perfectly legitimate. I think it’s when, when there’s a security breach or a security threat, and you have another technology that can be even more secure than the current technology in that case, I support forking it.
Vlad Costea (01:53:24):
But so far it has resisted where only soft forks then adjustments. And they had SegWit, which I don’t think half of the network uses it right now. I’m not sure I haven’t checked in a while. And they are going to have Schnorr signatures, which improves both scalability and privacy. And they have many more plants, which absolutely it’s great that they settled all this alien debates and they bled into different thoughts, school of thoughts and camps that right now they can just focus on development and finding or innovative ways of actually helping the project grow.
Donald McIntyre (01:54:11):
I totally agree. I think a big point has a brilliant roadmap and development team and ideas, all these different groups, and it’s going incredibly well with Latin network with sound secure systems. It’s amazing. It’s a, it’s a great example for the rest of crypto and a great solution for the rest of the world. We, we can only dream. I mean, we can’t imagine how, how far it can go. And I can just speculate how difficult it is for governments of the world to watch this technology grow, regardless of their opinion or coercion or attempt to promote their field currency. And I don’t think at any point in the next 100 years, or at least in our lifetime, we will see yet currencies getting replaced willingly by governments on their behalf. That would be an action in which they give up on their power. They’re going to say we no longer issue currencies. We’re going to accept this, which is not created by us. It’s not governed by us. It’s all up to the Dean individual to manage it. And our economy is going to depend on your financial choices. I think that’s risky for any ever.
Vlad Costea (01:55:45):
Yeah. Yeah. They’re there. They’re going to resist all the way and they’re going to try to invent new ways to control things,
Vlad Costea (01:55:53):
Even create. I think I’ve seen an idea of somebody to do an ERC 20 token, which replicates your Bitcoin ownership. So it’s basically a smart contract, which gets established to give you a one to one ratio of tokens, according to how much Bitcoin you, you actually hold. And after a while, if not all the amounts are claimed, the remaining supply of 21 from the 21 million is going to get distributed among the holders.
Donald McIntyre (01:56:30):
Vlad Costea (01:56:31):
They create something which resembles proof of stake by owning something, you get a much more, I can imagine how governments can trick Bitcoin users to do this because you basically give up on your privacy and you probably have to submit some kind of KYC. And from that point onwards, they can tax you much easier.
Donald McIntyre (01:56:56):
Vlad Costea (01:56:58):
They can find creative ways to make you give up on your hard money actually for their dumb money.
Donald McIntyre (01:57:05):
Yeah. But one thing that you’re going to find, one thing that you’re going to find when, when I talk about Bitcoin is that sometimes I criticize parts of the security model. And that sometimes I just do it on social media to be provocative, but at the same time it is because there are things that I am observing that can be security holds in Bitcoin. Two of the most ones that, that I criticize are I’m saying this, because you just mentioned that governments are going to resist the sit down and this is all the social layer, not humans find to take advantage of other humans and that’s natural biological behavior. So, so I was just thinking that Bitcoin has two things that are, is going to enable that kind of social attack, or one is that the 21 million monetary policy is a political decision in between. It’s not, it’s not a technical it’s not enforced by proof of work before fork. Basically create the hash for each block and it consumes a lot of energy similar to bowls now. But it only secures the block. Then as a second step, when the block is created, arbitrarily, there is a an account created and they deposit a balance, which is currently 12 and a half Bitcoins as a per block that
Donald McIntyre (01:58:42):
We work. The block is just an agreement between the users and the nodes globally. It’s something that can be changed with a hard fork. So if there is a sufficient social impact in the future, not now because the current philosophy of Bitcoin is very strong, but maybe in 10 years or two years where miners had are very powerful, et cetera. And they say, Hey guys, you know what? Now the block reward is only half a Bitcoin per block. And I don’t like that. I want more money. So my threat is that if you don’t pay me more, for example, raise it back to 10 Bitcoins or 12 and a half eight points per block. I’m not going to mine anymore. Not only that they can bribe with their big can bribe Coinbase and Xapo and all the companies that work on Bitcoin and bribe government, the patients, and whoever is there in 40 years influencing Bitcoin, and they can actually force the change.
Donald McIntyre (01:59:41):
So, so that is something that I see as a real threat miners have a very strong incentive to keep the block reward as high as possible. They don’t have an incentive to keep the block reward as low as possible. So that means that if it get very big future, they are going to lobby to change the monetary policy in their favor. That’s one security, hold the other here at the hole, which is related. Is that okay? It changed some Bitcoin required March mining and or dry chains. That means that same minors that mine Bitcoin would be mining side chains as well. So in the future, if Bitcoin is worth a trillion dollars, I have $5 trillion in inside chain. And if the only minor, these are the same miners that mine Bitcoin, that means that those miners are going to be mining fixed trillion dollars, not only the trillion dollars of big.
Donald McIntyre (02:00:42):
And that means that those miners are going to be very rich, very influential, and I call them those miners of the future. If they happen, I call them super miners. And those minors are going to turn into what today are Facebook, Google, Amazon and the Google and these, and then the centralized tech companies know where today tech companies, Google and Apple, they control for example, the, the app store and Google play. So all of the developers, so the world, the 26 million developers, if they want to create a start up and put their apps available to the people in the world, they have to, they have only two bottlenecks. And if which are Google and Apple, and if those two say they don’t like your app, you’re out and the same is going to happen with the miners in the future, there’s going to be four or five minors
Donald McIntyre (02:01:40):
That control $6 trillion in value. They’re going to mine, Bitcoin and the side chains and anybody who wants to a new site chain or an innovation on any of those will have to ask for permission to the miners. So they’re going to have a lot of power. If Bitcoin enables merge, mining and drive chains, or at least it’s merge mining, it’s permissionless, but if they promote it and if they implement dry chain so I see those two things and they’re are complimentary cause the same miners, the same supervisors are going to be the ones that change the monetary policy and fees and everything. So I still see, even though I am very probate point and I see it, the future, et cetera, they will have some threats. According to me. Now, this is my personal opinion. I’m sure you’re going to have many others like Jameson Lopp and others who are going to argue exactly the opposite.
Vlad Costea (02:02:42):
Yeah. I hope I get Jameson lopp on the podcast.
Donald McIntyre (02:02:47):
Jameson and also TruthCoin name is he’s the one pushing drivechains, which I oppose Paul Sztorc. I read, I recommend you you interview Paul Sztorc about writing. He, the only bad thing about Paul is that he only had actually talked to scientists and, and and people like me who are not scientists and to try to read his papers and watch his videos and who has an opposing opinion, he basically blocks lots of you because he only wants to talk to people who are equivalent in terms of knowledge. And that’s unfortunately, because in these open systems you have to deal with everybody.
Vlad Costea (02:03:35):
Do you think I would have any chance to get Nick Szabo?
Donald McIntyre (02:03:43):
He gives very few interviews. I don’t know, but I can give you his email and you can try, because it’ll be interesting to find out his opinion when he envisioned BitGold. He had this idea of two layers, which is very similar to what we have today with lightning and listening to see how he thinks about my name and are maybe the main points of criticism right now. I think you would have, at least you would have at least 1 million listeners that book, when you think about it, maybe that I do it for the audience so that whatever they listen to my podcast, but there’s also the selfish purpose of
Speaker 2 (02:04:38):
Otherwise. This is like a pretext to have a conversation about something from which I learned a lot. And this is selfish in a way, because it takes so many hours of reading and research to get, to have the knowledge, to have this kind of conversation. But it also helps me develop my vision and my worldview. So, yeah, I’m sorry, audience, I’m also being selfish here, but not in the sense. I don’t really care about how many viewers or listeners I get. It’s all about putting the information out there. Somebody wants to find it at some point. Maybe it’s going to be useful. Maybe that my limited mind will not do anything with the information that I get. It’s just a way of knowing which in itself is pointless, but somebody else will actually listen to any of the conversations here. And they will say, okay, this helps me solve this problem, which I have been having in my mind for quite some time. And I guess that’s how progress is made. Absolutely. I told, I totally agree with you
Donald McIntyre (02:05:48):
Doing, doing these podcasts is it’s a way of talking to people, understanding how they think and learning. I think it’s amazing. I, congratulations because the work you’re doing is very good because you are really talking to very interesting people. I’m not saying me, but for example, Jameson Lopp and the other sets who did the videos with on crypto insider and you asked very interesting questions and also you are very knowledgeable. You do your research many. Yeah, absolutely.
Vlad Costea (02:06:23):
They would just blow me away. I would be like, okay, that’s all I got. I, I know about the surface of all these technological ideas, but I cannot go into detail about it. I cannot explain how it works. I don’t know how to code. So please spare me. Be generous.
Donald McIntyre (02:06:46):
Yeah. I don’t, I’m not an engineer either. Like we said, at the beginning, I’m not a developer, but, but again, when I talk to other journalists and even some that are the leading ones in the crypto industry and you tell them A and they write B, I mean, it’s incredible. I mean, you, you want to say something one, two, three in that order and when they write it, write it three, two, one, or two, three, one, one, three, two, one in any order.
Vlad Costea (02:07:20):
Yeah. I think that I’m happy that I get to do it honestly. And I’m happy that people actually care about what I do because otherwise what’s the point and I hope get as many listeners
Vlad Costea (02:07:36):
And thank you for your time. It has been over two hours that we have been speaking, and this was in some ways enlightening and that’s a great pun, enlightning. And the end we’re of marketing, marketing, our animals, I guess I.
New Speaker (02:07:58):
Thank you for your time and for doing this interview, this podcast with me, and to forgiving me the opportunity to talk about all the stuff that I think about and speculate about. So, so I thank you. I hope you promote it too. When it comes out. I will. Okay. So I hope we talk again some other time. Yes. It’s always a pleasure. I hope so too. Thank you. Goodbye. Bye. Bye.