Mike Brock is the lead at TBD, the Bitcoin-focused subsidiary of Block. In this interview, we discuss Bitcoin’s limitations in solving complex societal problems, counter-arguments to the narrative that monetary flexibility leads to falling living standards and wasteful investments, the complexities and risks of Bitcoin’s widespread adoption, and why, despite certain limitations, Bitcoin still has the potential to be the most important monetary asset in human history.
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The Bitcoin community has had to harden itself against attacks from outside, by those either too ignorant or too invested in the incumbent system to allow themselves to understand the brilliance of the innovation. However, not all of those who raise issues counter to mainstream Bitcoin opinion are either attacking the innovation or the community. Some opinions are manifestly good faith attempts to sharpen the arguments needed to help wider Bitcoin adoption.
Mike Brock is someone who sits in this camp: he is an unapologetic advocate for Bitcoin but doesn’t necessarily agree with what could be framed as Bitcoin orthodoxy. In this podcast, we discuss in more detail the concerns around groupthink on certain issues, which is in turn leading to a branding issue that seems to be affecting wider adoption.
Specifically, is there a misconception in the Bitcoin community that Bitcoin has already won and will replace the US dollar? Has loose monetary policy since 1971 actually resulted in reduced living standards and significantly poor corporate investment behaviour? Are inflationary metrics providing a real understanding of consumer experiences? And, will a strict monetary policy have a net positive or negative influence on economies and societies?
Consideration of the arguments for and against deflationary or inflationary currencies enables Bitcoin’s true potential to be honed. However, even if Bitcoin has a long way to go before challenging the dominance of the US dollar, it has the potential to immediately help lift millions of people out of poverty by providing open, effective and cheap financial infrastructure. This means Bitcoin has a compelling narrative even within mainstream economic and political assumptions.