I bought into Bitcoin 2+ years ago with a full understanding that my investment could instantaneouly go to ZERO – poof! I was (and still am) hoping to kill 2 birds with one stone:
- Help give the world’s billions of “unbanked” people the opportunity to bootstrap themselves out of poverty by participating in commerce (the original Bitcoin cash use case) without any middlemen blocking their way and “feeing” them to death.
- Make money in the long term on my investment in other, less fortunate than I, people.
Before proceeding to view and interpret the following blasphemous diagram as either “right on” or a total “croc o’ conspiracy crap“, here’s my caveated stance on the devastating civil war going on in Bitcoinland:
Activating SegWit is clearly the safest technical option available to move the Bitcoin protocol forward at this point in time. Thus, the I hope it activates and the smoke clears ASAP.
The caveat is this… Based on my observation of how the strategic trajectory of the protocol regarding future on chain scaling has been subtly distorted since the worst thing to ever happen to Bitcoin occurred (the insertion of Blockstream Inc. financial influence into the development team), I hope the whole “the Bitcoin Core software development team Is An Untainted, Decentralized group” potemkin village is destroyed and this particularly toxic special interest group, Blockstream Inc., is seen for what it is – a big, centralized, banksta in clever disguise.
AXA is a French multinational insurance firm headquartered in the 8th arrondissement of Paris that engages in global insurance, investment management, and other financial services.
I’m excited to announce that we raised $55 million in Series A funding….. We’re thrilled to welcome Horizons Ventures, AXA Strategic Ventures, and Digital Garage to our great group of investors and advisors. – Austin Hill, Co-founder, Blockstream Inc.
The Think Types
Groupthink = Everyone believes in the idea/concept, but tantalizingly, it could be either wrong or right. If the group is wrong and all of the the individuals outside of the groupthink circle of membership remain steadfastly silent out of fear of persecution, then the group, and those that that they lead, all suffer.
Spreadthink = Everyone in the group places a different level of importance and meaning on the idea/concept.
Clanthink = Everyone in the group believes in the idea/concept, but it’s outright wrong. Those outside of the group that don’t believe the idea/concept are ostracized, tortured, killed……. or all of the above.
The Clanthink Theme
Blockstream Inc. + Key Bitcoin Core Software Development Team Contributors: High transaction fees, long confirmation times, and network congestion due to chronically full blocks are good for Bitcoin.
Quote reference: What Is Bitcoin?
Blockstream Affiliation reference table: Meet The Team
The next blockbuster horror film coming soon to a theater near you: “The Morphing“. It documents the disastrous transition of a fluid, decentralized, unified, team into a hardened, centralized, divided, team.
Adam Back recently claimed on Twitter that the Bitcoin Core development team is “decentralized“.
However, that’s a dubious assertion at best, and a disingenuous one at worst. Mr. Back is the President of Blockstream Inc. His startup company is financed by $70M from traditional bankstas who could give a shit about billions of unbanked/poor people being given the ultimate tool to: bootstrap themselves out of poverty, participate in commerce with merely a cell phone, and dramatically increase the world’s GDP.
Here is a snapshot of some of the most influential and vocal members of the core development team directly employed by Blockstream. The big guns are Adam Back and Greg Maxwell. Interestingly, Mr. Back, who is now an” executive“, but somehow still strangely thought of as a major technical contributor, doesn’t seem to be actively involved in the design/coding effort. That’s because his presidential title makes him responsible for Blockstream’s financial performance over all else.
Admittedly, not all Bitcoin Core developers are paid by Blockstream, but some are contracted out by the private, for-profit, company. But, as the presented evidence shows, the Bitcoin Core development team cannot be claimed to be DECENTRALIZED.
Startup investors, especially bankstas, expect a high ROI on their risky investments ASAP. Regarding Bitcoin, their investment returns can only come from centralized technologies, known as L2 tech, layered on top of Bitcoin. L2 technologies are to Bitcoin like web sites are to the TCP/IP protocol. That’s where real big money is made. By design, Blockstream is an L2 technology product company that must use the Bitcoin protocol to build on top of.
Hence, by implementing and promoting the SegWit improvement to the Bitcoin protocol before a deterministic, time-dependent, dynamically increasing maximum block size policy, raises suspicion in the Bitcoin community that Blockstream is out to freeze Bitcoin L1 on chain scaling growth after SegWit is activated in order to get money-making L2 technologies deployed as fast as possible. Again, suspiciously, there is no unified, visible, commitment from the Core development team as a whole to pursue an on chain scaling improvement next as priority one to relieve network pressure and allow a marginally increased onboarding of a cluster of new, less well off, users. No room to breathe.
Meanwhile, the Bitcoin network is becoming more exponentially saturated as new users (Venezuela, Mexico, Greece, Cypress, China, Japan, Africa, India) try flocking to Bitcoin to use as cash but are turned back by wildly rising transaction fees and confirmation times – a massive decrease in usability to large swaths of people. The flight from Bitcoin to alternative cryptocurrencies resulting from the poor stewardship of the Bitcoin protocol by the Core development team is vividly visible in this market share chart:
Satoshi Nakamoto, the genius creator of Bitcoin, said something to the effect of:
In the future, there will either be massive BTC transaction volume, or zero volume.
Ironically, the anti-fragile Bitcoin system proven to be indestructible by powerful external forces over 8 years of 24 X 7 operation, may end up instantaneously imploding due to internal forces caught in the throes of a bloody death match.
If you dive into Satoshi Nakamoto’s writings like I have, you’ll quickly discover that his (their?) original vision for Bitcoin was that the network be available as a permission-less, peer-to-peer payment system intended for anyone, anywhere, anytime. And yes, that includes billions of disenfranchised people currently without the ability or opportunity to open a bank account.
In order for Bitcoin to scale to accommodate billions of daily users, the maximum block size currently burned into the network protocol must be increased from the paltry 1 megabyte size that’s been in effect since the birth of bitcoin way back in 2009.
Before disappearing into the ether, Satoshi foresaw the potential growth of bitcoin and had these words to say about the maximum block size:
The bitcoin core software development team, most of whom are employed by the for-profit company Blockstream, have hijacked Satoshi’s vision by steadfastly refusing to increase the bitcoin on-chain maximum block size beyond 1 megabyte.
Assuming 200 bytes per transaction, each 1 MB bitcoin block can hold a up to 5000 transactions. Since blocks are validated at 10 minute intervals, that means the network capacity is currently capped at a measly 8 transactions per second (versus Visa/PayPal capacities of hundreds of thousands of transactions/sec).
A quick glance at the home page of Blockchain.info shows that every block is full and confirmations are taking much longer than 10 minutes.
With more and more transactions competing to be added to each block, the per transaction miner’s fee, which originally amounted to pennies, is increasing at such at rate that only large transactions will make economic sense in the near future. In the worse case, people might as well quit trying to enter the Bitcoin ecosystem and revert back to using dinosaur remittance providers like Western Union at 20% per transaction.
As new individual users and businesses attempt to experiment with bitcoin, many of them are not only being turned off by larger and larger transaction fees, they’re increasingly getting annoyed by long confirmation delays – even to the point of having their transactions dropped from the network altogether because of overcapacity at peak usage times.
Of course, the bitcoin core development team (which may as well be called Adam Bach’s Blockstream Inc. team) has a billion technical excuses for keeping the max block size at 1MB, all of which have been debunked by the pro-increase-in-block-size technical community. Everyone knows the real motivation behind core’s uncompromising position: Blockstream’s plan to profit from the side chain products they are developing.
Speaking of the pro-increase-in-block-size technical community, they are on their third valiant try at attempting to put Bitcoin back on track with Satoshi’s original vision:
To hell with the Bitcoin core development team’s self-serving roadmap for Bitcoin, I support Bitcoin Unlimited. So should you.
Because of the steadfast stubbornness of the Bitcoin Core software development team to refuse to raise the protocol’s maximum block size in a timely fashion, three software forks are ready and waiting in the wings to save the day if the Bitcoin network starts to become overly unreliable due to continuous growth in usage.
So, why would the Bitcoin Core team drag its feet for 2+ years on solving the seemingly simple maximum block issue? Perhaps it’s because some key members of the development team, most notably Greg Maxwell, are paid by a commercial company whose mission is to profit from championing side-chain technology: Blockstream.com. Greg Maxwell is a Blockstream co-founder.
I don’t know the deployment status of Bitcoin Unlimited or Bitcoin Classic, but I do know that a number of key Bitcoin community players experimented with running the Bitcoin XT software (authored by long-time, dedicated Bitcoiner Gavin Andresen and former Bitcoiner Mike Hearn). The Bitcoin Core team was so offended by the transgression that either they and/or their followers executed a series of DDoS attacks on XT nodes to punish the offenders and coerce the infidels to revert back to running the Bitcoin Core code.
Since the date on which Bitcoin XT’s increased maximum block size functionality was supposed to kick in has expired, some people have said that Bitcoin XT has outright failed. However, BD00 thinks that Bitcoin XT and/or its siblings will be adopted quicker than you can say “Blockstream” if the Bitcoin network becomes systemically unusable under a frozen Bitcoin Core code base. After all, there is at least $6 billion dollars of market value and $1 billion dollars of investment capital staked on the success of Bitcoin. So if push comes to shove, Bitcoin Core just might get shoved out into the cold by the rest of the community (users, miners, exchanges).