How Bitcoin is hostile to property rights

Yesterday I called for the banning of Bitcoin and while reactions to my post included many personal attacks, Bitcoin talking points, and vague dismissals, nobody bothered to attempt to refute my core points.

While Bitcoin cranks and talking point reciters were angry, it is irrefutable that Bitcoin’s intentionally designed properties make it hostile to property rights. There may be another cryptocurrency that isn’t hostile to our liberties, but Bitcoin is incompatible with freedom under the rule of law.


If our nation’s founders are to be believed, our government exists to protect life, liberty, and property. The reason it exists, and the way it has legitimacy, is that it serves the people to protect our fundamental rights. That’s how the rule of law is better than anarchy, because we can have laws against murder, slavery, and theft.

Recently in Virginia, a man was caught after stealing $2 million worth of gold. One of the jobs of police in this matter is to recover the stolen property, including through a pawn shop where the thief ran $340,000 worth of the precious metals.

If the man had stolen Bitcoin instead of gold, that would be out of the question. Money in the form of cash or a bank account, or tangible goods like gold or silver, can always have unlawful transactions reversed. Money can be sent back to the person it was stolen from. Property can be taken and returned to its rightful owner. But Bitcoin? Bitcoin advocates brag about how Bitcoin payments are irreversible. Anything the thief spent is gone forever, and anything the thief didn’t yet spend is meant to be gone forever.

That’s why blackmailers are using Bitcoin. That’s why Bitcoin exchanges are loved by criminals. While criminals that use and steal Bitcoin can be arrested if caught in person, their unlawful transactions cannot be reversed, and if they can stay physically away from the police, then it’s relatively easy for them to keep the profits of their crimes. Victims get nothing, and government is unable to do its basic job: defend our liberties.

Anarchists think that’s a good thing. But then again, anarchy and theft have long gone hand in hand. Bitcoin’s hardcore ideologues simply want to ensure the next Sacco and Vanzetti, most likely operating online, get off scot-free.

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