[cryptography] (off-topic) Bitcoin is a repeated lesson in cryptography applications - was "endgame"

dan at geer.org dan at geer.org
Sun Feb 26 08:48:05 EST 2012

Well put, James.  Warren Buffet's arguments are, to my eye,
aligned with yours.  He argues that gold has no intrinsic
value, unlike farmland or a company like Coca Cola.  In that
way, his evaluation is as instrumentalist as is yours, to the
extent that I understand the both of you.  His discussion of
gold, per se, is getting some press.  See

2011 shareholder letter

What I would add to your analysis of fiat currency is to agree
that nails, moonshine liquor, and antibiotics are replacements
for fiat currency, but I must also note that the modern economy
is all but totally dependent on large enterprises which, because
of their largeness alone, simply cannot engage in barter.  As such,
the failure of fiat currency is a return to another time; friction
(transfer costs) would be too great for any other outcome.  Just
as Internet hacking is material to the first world but not the
third, so too would be the failure of fiat currency.

Yours in off-topicality,


A democracy...can only exist until the voters discover that they
can vote themselves the Public Treasury.
                        -- Alexander Fraser Tyler

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