Highest Rated Comments

aminok80 karma

This is one of the best questions here. It could even be narrowed down to why the dragnet method of combating money laundering is used. Subjecting the population to total financial surveillance, by requiring every financial transaction to be reported, to stop money laundering, seems like the type of bargain struck by the East German Stasi, and inconsistent with liberal democracy.

Other methods that might be perhaps less effective, could be used that would result in privacy being compromised much less in comparison.

aminok10 karma

Thank you for doing this IAmA, it shows a lot of open-mindedness.

I just really hope Bitcoin exchanges don't face any additional regulations that other money transmitters don't have to deal with. The only proposal I've seen suggested by your office that I find reasonable is that exchanges be required to disclose that Bitcoin transactions are irreversible and that the price of bitcoin is volatile. Simple, easy to comply with, and good for the consumer.

My question is, have you read any of the discussions in /r/bitcoin about the hearings you've been involved in and the talks you've given?

aminok7 karma

Recovering stolen cash = uncovering private key controlling stolen BTC.

Not the same but similar. It's true that the private key could be encrypted with a passphrase only inside the thief's mind, but people can be held for contempt of court if they don't divulge that information.

aminok5 karma

Your comment sounds like Hugo Chavez's in 2005:

“It is impossible, within the framework of the capitalist system, to solve the grave problems of poverty of the majority of the world’s population,” the Venezuelan leader said. “We must transcend capitalism. But we cannot resort to state capitalism, which would be the same perversion of the Soviet Union. We must reclaim socialism as a thesis, a project, and a path, but a new type of socialism, a humanist one which puts humans and not machines or the state ahead of everything.”

What you just like him don't realize or acknowledge is that socialism is inherently authoritarian and causes mass suffering by the nature of its underlying assumptions (like people not having a right to private property) and prescriptions (democratic control over all decisions on usage of economic resources).

12 years later, and Venezuelans are starving:


The Russian word for worker's council is "soviet". The Soviet economy was a collection of these worker's councils, which decided on every thing, and the supreme soviet council coordinated national economic activity.

The reality is, as it has and always will be, that without the incentives that come with private property rights, you do not get the same economic vitality as in market economies and you breed corruption, through lack of individual control over economic decisions, and moreover, that the very attempt to ban private property and market exchange is authoritarian.

aminok5 karma

You cited one of the legitimate uses of tumblers, which is to keep businesses' financial information private from competitors.

I'll add that tumblers and other innovations that increase privacy are needed to protect people from criminals.

Exposed financial information on the block chain would give criminals a means of tracking and preying on individuals, making P2P digital currency much more dangerous to use.

P2P digital currency must become better at protecting privacy if its full potential is to be realized. A public block chain without privacy features to prevent tracking, while extremely convenient for investigations, is not viable or desirable when all factors are considered.