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Bytecoin: Peel the Onion

Bytecoin: Peel the Onion

Dear Readers,

As always, I peruse the cryptosphere, in search of answers. When it comes to Bytecoin, however, the answers are always just out of reach.

So this will be short.

It’s not the answer to the Nicolas van Saberhagen mystery, but it is an invitation to a place where you can plumb the depths.

Here at Reddit, I’ve created a new sub:

Reddit - Copy

It’s place where I hope the curious will come to discuss the history of Bytecoin, CryptoNote and other “Dstrange” things. It’s the unofficial page and news. A place where the latest good and bad news can be gathered — without censorship. 

There’s no agenda here, except the truth.

To the right of the main page (of the subreddit), I am building a loose timeline. The idea being, others can use this to compare and share any gems they have come across. Also, if anyone is convinced that Bytecoin is above board, they can come back and remind themselves — why or why not.

Sincerely,

 

Jack Shorebird

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Bytecoin (BCN): Russian Billionaires and Fabulous Resorts?

Bytecoin (BCN): Russian Billionaires and Fabulous Resorts?

This is your Bytecoin update, minus the hoopla and charts. Cue the music and watch your wallet.

The red flags keep coming. Buy BCN? Please.

If you have perused any of my past blogs (see below), I’ve, on occasion, written about Bytecoin. It’s one of those older cryptocurrencies, that never quite got off the ground. Not like Bitcoin or Ethereum or even Ripple. Sure, people have been interested in it – like me – and then they dropped it. Like me.

Why? Because the answer my friends is blowing in the wind – just like that song. You need only to sniff Al Capone’s cigar.

Bytecoin does not pass the smell test.

Maybe in the deep dark future it will. But not yet. Not when cryptocurrency exchanges dump it or freeze it for months on end. Not when the Bytecoin website goes dead for over a year, then rises from the ashes. Or is that, “sneaks from the shadows?” Not when most exchanges won’t touch it…after years.

Investors have consistently lost money in Bytecoin and it’s happening all over again. It’s called learning the hard way. It’s not like the other altcoins…not by a longshot. And investors need to know this…again.

Fast forward five years. Present day. After all the deception Bytecoin has shoveled out.

Cryptocurrency and blockchain curiosity has now enticed new investors to risk yet more money in Bytecoin…and many other altcoins. The current cryptocurrency (blockchain) environment is a feast for start-ups, with access to easy money and absolutely, it is a boost for innovation and business. It is, unfortunately, a boon for criminals and the mob. Milk money. A fool and his money are soon ruined. It is why governments, in their infinite wisdom, often reach in and “attempt” to pull the plug.

Bytecoin deserves a special mention – again.

And as the years pass, the more often it seemed that mobsters were peeking around the bushes. Did I say there are hints of mobsters – organized crime? Yes. But you be the judge. I know I’m making serious allegations, but hear me out.

Bytecoin is not like any cryptocurrency on the planet. Yes, Monero used the same tech in the beginning, based on the CryptoNote protocol. Arguably, Aeon and Electroneum are born of the same math-cloth. And there are other altcoins that utilize the protocol. Even these others, must be used with caution.

The point is, with Bytecoin, the “rabbit hole” is a game. The mystique is simply there to make everyone chase their tails, whilst the rabbit – the Bytecoin creators – sit back and reap the rewards, in the millions of dollars. It is, like many other altcoins, a money blackhole.


Ask these simple questions:

  • Why do all the Bytecoin/CryptoNote developers hide?
  • Why are all the names associated with CryptoNote and Bytecoin either pseudonyms or “handles?”
  • Why have none of them come forward – not ever?

Here’s the standard answer: to protect them from prosecution. But given the stench, the threat of prosecution is real – for them. Very real. For you? It’s the loss of your money.

Should governments find them, Bytecoin developers would, like Monero and Aeon (but not necessarily Electroneum) suffer. Sure, others could simply copy the code and start over. Dip into the repository and begin again.

“…organized deception.”

To think that they can hide forever is hubris. Monero at least tries to put a good foot forward. Aeon developers are hidden. Bytecoin is off the reservation, however. The outward appearance speaks of organized deception. All of it.

In fact, we do not even know if the current developers of Bytecoin are even the originals. We have no idea if they are (or were) good people and judging by their responses on Reddit and other social networks, they leave a lot to be desired.

As a former law enforcement officer, based upon decades of training and experience – they remind me of the thousands of thugs I have had the pleasure of investigating.

Could I and others, be wrong about the Bytecoin crew? That Jenny is an honest soul, trying to keep our wealth out of the hands of corrupt governments? (I’m sorry Jenny, but you and your friends make it too easy.)

How about this recent tweet on January 5, 2018?

BCN Tweet - Copy

 

Is it Sheldone.store or Sheldon.store? The latter is a brand-new site. Buy with confidence? The former listing seems to be an error, as well.

And Check-coin.com? A new store accepting Bytecoin in a high-risk countryBulgaria? I’m not even going to link to this site. I don’t want to risk your computer, let alone your bank account.

How about this recent glowing report about Bytecoin —  from Decentral Magazine? A brand new, but popular website? If so, why is Decentral Magazine keeping their facts private? I mean I do, as an individual, use a pen name, but my website location is not hidden. I’m in the United States. Any court order can find me. But would not a news magazine want to publish their reputation to the world? And why did the article omit Bytecoin’s negative past? Was this a paid advertisement? Methinks…yes.

How about that fabulous resort in Montenegro? Dukley Hotel and Resort? If you check Scamadviser here, the website is new — and could be on a compromised server. Careful if you visit the website. But you can spend your bytecoin there. Here, try these glowing reviews and don’t forget to expand the “weird” comments. The rest is self-explanatory and telling. Here’s the Google 3-D Map link. Why one reviewer thought of Russian Billionaires is curious.

And there are other new concerns…

Art at Gabo? It’s a new site. You can spend your bytecoin on a nice cell phone cover, a bytecoin t-shirt, even a BCN coffee mug, if you are so inclined. The site appears to be in the United States. Use at your own risk.

Lebytecoin.fr? I’m not linking to it. Scamadviser says it’s on a compromised server. Risky.

Sakama leather goods is an older site, but its owner is hidden. I only buy my leather goods from the “unhidden.” You know, in case I need to return them.

BytecoinMarket.com? Yet another new site. Visit at your own risk. Here’s the Scamadviser on it.

All the above is only to make you think. Yes, in a perfect world, we would all buy our goods in private. No government bureaucrat should watch our every transaction and bytecoin is one offered solution. But pick your solutions wisely. Do not enrich the wrong organization.

The above is not investment advice. It is just information. Take it as you may.

 

Suggested reading:

 

Bytecoin Wins, Electroneum Needs Work.


Unable - Copy


Unable to update balance? Why?

Sometimes you have to really “use” the software to get a good feel for it.

After using Electroneum’s web wallet several times, I had enough. Life is too short for me to sit and stare, as my balance updates over and over. As the spinning circles spin. Not to mention having to click and re-click and start over — when trying to transfer ETN’s.


El - Copy


Enough. Please stop the spinners…

Maybe Electroneum will iron out their kinks and maybe all will be well and maybe it’ll blow past Bytecoin, but not now. Maybe never.

To compare…

I have experimented, over the years, with Bytecoin software wallets. You know the kind. You download them, sync them, wait forever and go from there. I have not used the new web based Bytecoin wallets, so I have no reference there.

For all the allegations against them — and I have brought up a few — one thing was certain: Bytecoin wallets always worked. Never, did I have trouble with them. Not once.

And yes, I’ve seen and read a lot of complaints about the long sync times. But I tell you, from one cryptohead to another, I’ve installed the Bytecoin wallets on many a machine and they always worked.

I’ve been more partial to Monero and even Aeon over the years, but you know what? I had trouble with their systems. They worked, but they were not geared for mass adoption. They are getting better, however.

What does this mean?

It means, that although I might have some indigestion about Bytecoin’s past, if I just need to send some crypto fast and be certain it arrives or is received, I can trust Bytecoin to deliver. I can trust Monero as well. Aeon too.

As for Electroneum? ETN’s. I’m done with them — for now.

After their recently flawed grand opening, their paper wallet holding-pattern, then their web wallet that is slower than a crippled dinosaur?

No thanks. Been their done that.

I’ve waited long enough.

I’ve had my fill of bad service, slow service — even if it works. And the Electroneum online wallet does work. It’s kind of hinky, a bit unprofessional and…did I mention…slow? It’s worse than watching my grass grow.

It will not surprise me if ETN’s learn about gravity very soon. If they moon, and I really can’t imagine they will, it will certainly not be based on their great web wallet.

Watch out for the hype and the marketing.

I wish you well, ETN, but I’m off for greener pastures. For speedy wallets and real privacy.

This is my opinion of course, so don’t take it personally.


jgs

 

Bitcoin: The Gathering Storm

Bitcoin: The Gathering Storm

Dear Crypto Fans,

Excuse my absence. I’ve been reading all the news lately and it has made me slightly wary of things to come.

The crypto innovators are being hunted…again.

Prepare for more American regulation…again.

Followed by the UK.

And probably Australia…again.

Wendy McElroy called it the Pitbull assault, in the US. She’s being nice. She keeps tabs on this crap and I suggest keeping an eye on Wendy.

Uncle Sam is taking square aim at your stash of crypto now. Bitcoin et al.

Maybe Uncle Sam is tired of his missing tax loot. More than likely, he’s about ready to print a load of paper money to pay down the debt through inflation. It would be smarter just to e-print some crypto, but allegedly the US gov’t isn’t biting.

If there is one thing that could put a serious dent in cryptocurrency, internationally, this is it: S.1241. Or, perhaps more accurately, push crypto underground – in the US, UK and Australia. Okay, let’s add South Africa.

Did I miss anyone? Canada? Please.

Crypto Black-markets may be about to explode in the old free-world, as a result. But how long can they last?

Who controls ICANN?

Reactions from this news might push people into the privacy coins. Monero (XMR) is up of late, but some of that may be from news that you can now purchase discounted music with XMR’s. In other words, it’s marketing. No, Jethro, it’s privacy.

Privacy, privacy, privacy.

Let me harp on that. Get ready. It is possible that the Winklevoss Twins backed the wrong horse. It’s okay, but if they are smart, you should see a rising Monero now. Slowly at first. Then faster.

It is highly probable that governments will continue to attack cryptocurrency as a threat, as a bubble, as an unregulated investment vehicle, with no intrinsic value. They will hold out their own valueless fiat currencies as the one true god. Bitcoin will be beaten.

Don’t pray too hard. Diversify. If not Monero, any other privacy coin you think is good gumballs, buy them. You might live to regret it, if you don’t. I seriously doubt you will regret it, if you do.

S.1241 states, if you are a US subject (I am) – you must comply. They will cancel my passport, if I do not. This is my prison camp. How big is yours?

The United States must modernize. I’m serious, that’s the buzzword: modernize. But think of this word instead: confiscate. I mean, at least be honest, pud-winkles. Modernize what? The confiscatory tax laws?

And don’t think there is an out.

S.1241 covers all the bases. Ownership. Control. Cryptocurrency exchanges. Paper wallets. Brain Wallets. Hardware wallets. My dead grandma’s coffin stash. Hey, they even made it all-encompassing: funds stored in digital format are subject to reporting requirements, if the bill passes.

And you think it won’t pass? Do you remember why Jesus tipped over the money-changer’s tables?

By my estimation, there are over 30 million Americans holding (HODLing) crypto. I hope there are more. Eleven more disciples at least. No Judas.

S.1241 is attempting to amend a section of  Section 53412(a) of title 31, United States Code. And it appears as if our illustrious US law makers will do it on the sly. Middle of the night stuff. And soon.

Satoshi Nakamoto warned us. Bitcoin was only a temporary solution.

So, what is a more enduring solution?

Monero? Grin? Aeon? Electroneum? Bytecoin?

Any port in a storm.

And for the record, IOTA. I have a bad feeling about it. I hope I’m wrong.

 

Sincerely,

 

Jack Shorebird


The above is all opinion. If you think it’s off the mark, that’s okay.

Cryptocurrency: “…and Bitcoin Must Burn!”

Cryptocurrency: “…and Bitcoin Must Burn!”

Dear Crypto-fans,

The crypto-fake-fintech-news continues, but the tide is turning in some few lands. Slovenia maybe. Singapore, possibly. Nigeria? Yes. But I won’t be emigrating.

Google trends are showing an upswing of late.

But the battle against cryptocurrency is also gaining momentum. The reaction is fomenting. Like Cato the Elder’s call for Carthage to burn, so too are the princes of the day signaling their intent, through their mouthpieces on retainer, that non-princely crypto, must also be destroyed.

The most recent pretext to dump bitcoin and cryptocurrency, besides bubble fears, is that fiat currency is “backed” by the government or the Central Bank. That such a thing as cryptocurrency, which does not enjoy the toxic fruits of the government fiat monopoly, is intolerable and hopeless.

But this assertion is ominous, not glorious. Whether you believe Clif High, that Bitcoin will far outpace the value of gold or you want to take to the shadows with your secret Bytecoin, the princes are on the march. They care not if you chose Cardano (ADA), but might let up, if you wade into Ripple (XRP).

And we cannot reach into our television sets, our computer monitors, our tablets or cell phones, and shake these intellectual Lilliputians by the shoulders and yell, “Hey, Brainiacs, fiat money is also NOT backed – except by a gun.”

“How dare you think that, you finite fleshpots.”

That’s how they respond, in my translation. Shake their ponytails, peer side-long down red veined noses, lick their finely wine-soaked lips, point to the proper ends of their overcooked eggs, with bejeweled digits, and leer at us subjugated subjects – with the aplomb of the imagined royal birthright.

Two such peers of servitude deserve mention.

“Alan Greenspan…Jamie Dimon…”

Alan Greenspan? A former gold bug, now completely in tune with the Fed or is that the vampiric feeding of inflated monetary dogma?

Jamie Dimon? A bankster in the Morgan mold or is he a dollar-defender, through hell and devalue?

Here are a few more bitcoin bashers to peruse.

Deep thinkers of the bygone epoch, where it is said that monetary conscription is better than gold-backs. Where the song of sound money, as sublime and powerful as it is, cannot meet the rejoinder – the princely power of the purse, under guard.

What do these bashers of bitcoin really mean when they say that cryptocurrency is not “backed” by Johnny Law? They mean, dear readers, that the prince is not in charge of the peoples’ currency, i.e., cryptocurrency.

And that is the crux of it. THE PRINCE HAS NO CONTROL. Paupers must mind their prince.

The prince’s fiat money is “backed” by his soldiers. You must use it – or else.

Think on that, each time you pull that fiat from your wallet with that picture of the current or past princes. This currency is “backed” by the point of a gun, the threat of jail if you refuse to use it, or large fines if you dare to abuse it. It is called forced compliance.

The Federal Reserve Note, is your contract with the prince. Do no fail to abide by the terms.

Has not humankind outgrown such princely designs?

The religion of money…

Most currency, that plastic card, paper or digital noise stored at your bank or under that rock in your yard, is worthless-worth. It is backed by nothing and the power to “make it work.” A promise to pay zero and from that zero, substance. The religion of money, if you will. To make nothing buy something. Just believe, sayeth the Prince of Fiat.

Every school child should know this. Government fiat is “myth money.” Fantasy cash, you are compelled to use.

The soldier “backs” your princely fiat these days. Except, to him, you are the enemy. Harsh words, but relevant when comparisons must be made with cryptocurrency.

Fiat crypto, by comparison, is an all-volunteer army. In this scenario of sin, the prince of fiat is dead.

And about the noble metals. There are no gold bars at the bank – in most cases. Even the Swiss have denuded their banks of metal. But the Swiss people, being a lot more intelligent than their host of princes, have stored gold in private vaults – not banks. Unfortunately, the princes are aware of the locations of such vaults.

But who owns that gold? You think American and Japanese billionaires don’t have a dog in that fight? Sure, they do. Will a Swiss Army man care to back your Swiss stored gold, if his prince reclaims the bars, for the good of Switzerland?

And private vaults abound these days. Do you wonder why? And are these vaults safe from the princes’ soldiers?

…myth money…

Cryptocurrency is also a myth money, a fiat currency, but it is different too. The prince does not own the cryptocurrency fiat money machine. The people own crypto. It is a detached system of fiat currency that circumvents capital controls, i.e., the Prince’s Rules of Trade. And there are dozens of competing blockchain alternatives, not simply one princely fiat system.

The prince is fuming about this. How dare his subjects create their own fiat currency. Don’t they know that fiat money is backed by nothing – not even the princes’ soldiers?

You might wonder how a cryptocurrency system can invade and dislodge, peaceably, the Prince’s Bank and essentially rob him of his ability to conduct business. You might also wonder what the prince is going to do when his fiat currency begins to devalue so rapidly that he can no longer pay his castle employees the proper level of wages.

He will need to pay his soldiers some how and maintain his dominance.

Will the prince seek to control all the cryptocurrencies on earth? No, he does not have that power.

Could our Prince enlist the help of other princes abroad, hold a summit in a foreign land and gather the forces of many other princes and kings, to block this crypto-virus from spreading?

Maybe. He and his soldiers, who he pays in Bright Prince Fiats, must team up with other lands to thwart this growing threat, before it’s too late.

…a gold standard…

In the meantime, some gold-bug few of the Prince’s own citizens, wealthy masters in their own right, the ones who have decried his use of fiats for years, call for a gold standard once again – and for the abolition of crypto, henceforth.

The prince, seeing a way out of the crypto-crisis begins to devise his plan.

The renewed gold standard is enacted, sort of.

The prince has all the land gather their hoards of silver and gold, deposit them into the banks he controls and promises his subjects, that from this day forward, sound money will reign supreme in all his lands.

The prince’s subjects, save a few wary ones, deposit their golden hoards, which they have hidden from the princes of past and present, into the princely vaults. Record amounts of gold, silver and diamonds, flood in and the subjects are ecstatic.

Even the prince smiles, benevolently praising his lands. “For the good of my subjects!” he laments. He feigns emotions at just the right moments, as his advisors have advised.

The subjects of the lands, relieved of the dual threat of the crypto-virus and the prince’s own fiat money scourge, forgive the latter and bash the former with abandon.

Pronouncements echo and postings are posted all over the lands. Town criers cry. On every tree and jailhouse wall, flapping in the breezes, are the grand and memorable memoranda: sound money is the order of the new day.

Of course, our Prince, along with all the other princes and kings; and not a few queens of dubious nature, have simply activated their plan to cast a shadow of disrespect over the whole of crypto.

“You see,” the prince quips, as he lounges on great pillows, attended to by subjects knowledgeable in the ways of arcane finance, “crypto is fiat…and princely sums are sound money – backed by gold and silver! I have returned to the ways of old gold!”

But the plans these of princes is most certainly a mirage. They, the princes and kings, the dubious queens and tyrannical tricksters, have merely confiscated the gold and issued multitudes of fiat. They have also declined to report the exact amounts of gold and silver in their safe-haven bank vaults, under their control and properly guarded by soldiers of the crown, by and for the good of all subjects, of course.

“Security,” says the prince, “is of vast and secret importance! Therefore, for the good of all subjects, I will keep the location and amount of princely precious metals undisclosed.”

…gold and silver and jewels…

What’s more, the prince, seeing to the secret security of all this gold and silver and jewels, has it moved from the banks and consolidated at his Summer Palace. A palace which is really a fortress far from his subjects and heavily guarded by loyal soldiers, who are paid in actual gold.

Princely subjects, fighting for the flag, dying for honor and dust, must dine, once again, upon the quantitative ease. No more are they worth, no less should they breathe.

Do you see any parallels here? This is essentially the repeating history of money. The Classical Liberal societies start with gold/silver monies then they devolve into socialistic fiefdoms and fiat systems controlled by the prince. A prince, who requires all your private information, to keep you safe from the wanton criminals and be able to reallocate your accumulated wealth as you live; and upon your demise, absorb your gold – all for the good of the prince’s subjects – meaning us, whether we like it or not.

And you wonder why the subjects currently trust fiat cryptocurrency over gold – for now.

The subjects – paupersdo not trust the prince.

Perhaps one should look at this trend. Bitcoin is gathering more interest than silver or the dollar. That’s an eye opener.

When do you suppose the interest in bitcoin will surpass gold? And does it have staying power?


Sincerely,

 

Your Friend in Crypto…

Jack Shorebird


Disclaimer: Believe none of what you read herein, half of what you see, and bow to the prince every night, before your subject-slumber, if you think that I’m not serious…

Zcash v. Monero: The Friday Night Fights

Zcash v. Monero: The Friday Night Fights

Hello Crypto Dudes and Dudettes,

This is just a nightcap, a final bit of juice for the day.

Recent internet chatter pits Zcash against Monero. It seems that some Zcash supporters are citing or linking to an older evaluation of Monero. One that is not so glowing. Hints that Monero is/was traceable.

Is it? The question seems to hang like bad meat in a broken freezer – in South Africa.

Other allegations imply that Monero is Mickey Mouse, essentially.

Apparently, Edward Snowden has weighed in. Zcash it is.

The peanut gallery is crying foul. Snowden is a shill, a paid endorser…really?

But shouldn’t you at least consider a private cryptocurrency? Bitcoin is traceable. Why wait?

So, what’s in your wallet? Governments already know. And some hackers.

Choose wisely.

And if top academics did help to develop Zcash, who cares if they did not “implement” the actual coin?

That’s one lame argument.

If a rocket scientist shows you how it’s done and you build a brand new shiny rocket, it’s still a rocket. Even if you used old Nazi science – old V2 methods – for some of your “code.” (I’m hinting at the use of bitcoin code within Zcash.)

We know that bitcoin works. We have never seen Bytecoin take off like that. (Note : the Bytecoin link may not work.)

Monero has moved onto higher ground – as – I might say – it’s a “people’s coin.” Grass roots.

Zcash is beholden to their sponsors, right?

But that does not mean we cannot or should not profit from those who back Zcash and therefore “pump” the coin.

The continued success of Zcash – a very volatile coin – is still in the weeds. But judging by bitcoin’s success, is Zcash the best of both worlds? Private or public? You can show and tell or…not, right?

To defend Monero – that it too is based on the works of academia – is disingenuous.

We know those who developed the Zcash/Zerocash process. We cannot verify the existence of a single coder or developer of CryptoNote/CryptoNight – Bytecoin – not one.

And yes, I realize that we do not know Satoshi Nakamoto or his counterpart in the CryptoNote universe – Nicolas van Saberhagen.

That’s not my point.

This article helps to clear the air a bit.

Monero/Aeon, remain the underdog(s) – for now – as far as I’m concerned. And lately Aeon has spiked. We’ll see if it holds.

Certainly, Monero and Aeon are better at holding the line than Zcash. That’s a tell.

Apparently, Edward Snowden doesn’t have time to check the crypto-markets to verify this fact.

That’s all for now.

The Ugly Truth About Bytecoin

The Ugly Truth About Bytecoin

 


Why do they hide?

In my recent audio blog, I review some important aspects of Bytecoin. Things they — the Teto-Team and Jenny — don’t seem to want to talk about.

Audio blog: The Ugly Truth about Bytecoin

 

Bitcoin: Behind Enemy Lines

Bitcoin: Behind Enemy Lines

Is it possible…to invest in a cryptocurrency that is acceptable to governments, banks, investment houses and privacy seeking individuals? Not necessarily for the “purity” of the coin, but its potential to grow and thereby earn a profit for the average investor?

What I mean by “purity” is the desire by many for a cryptocurrency to be decentralized, subvert all government controls, be public (or private), and have nothing to do with banking. The farther the crypto is from what is seen by many as corporate corruption, the better.

But can we meet them halfway — and profit? Isn’t that the game plan? Or is this a “take-over-the-world plot?”

Let’s face it, decentralization and the acceptance of that philosophy are two different worlds. We should live in the real one, not the fantasy digital matrix.

So, what is the reality? Is it: “join them, then beat them?”

Let’s judge by the current lay of the land. There are enemies at the gates. One cannot ignore this fact.

No doubt many have read and continue to read about cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum and clan. Good news and bad. Bubbles and troubles.

Here’s the recent news…

There are reports that China will essentially make all cryptocurrencies illegal by October of 2017. Large Cryptocurrency exchanges are reportedly reaching out to non-Chinese based businesses to circumvent these new capital controls. There is uncertainty in the crypto-markets as to how bitcoin will ride this out.

India may adopt a national cryptocurrency called ‘Lakshmi.’ The implication here is that the government there does not trust bitcoin. The tax authorities are concerned about money laundering, according to reports. This should also be a warning to Bytecoin users in India.

If you can’t beat them, copy the tech and take it over?

The European Commission is concerned about cybercrimes and cryptocurrencies. Regulation is sought. This implies, not a rejection of such currencies, but their tacit adoption or at least it’s a delaying tactic.

Russia – Leningrad Region – cryptocurrency ‘miners’ are being invited to the Leningrad region to create large industrial scale facilities. Cheap power is a selling point. The effort seems to have long legs, reaching to Moscow. Do you think they want a piece of the action?

On the downside, Bloomberg reports that Bitcoin might split again because the developers are in disagreement. Added risk for investors. More uncertainty.

John MacAfee announced that Pandora’s box has been opened. Government control over money is eroding. The reaction has been one of regulation in the US and in China, reportedly, Cryptocurrency executives have not been allowed to leave the country.

Ray Dalio, Hedge Fund Manager, has voiced his opinion: Bitcoin is a bubble.

Rainer Michael Preiss (Wealth Advisor) indicated that banks are likely afraid of bitcoin.

Is there a double-standard, however? As this article reports, the recent outspoken critics of bitcoin may in fact work for companies that actually invest in it.

Okay. So, what does all this mean?

Certainly, one cannot predict the future; however, behind the battle lines one can make some critical observations and ask the hard questions.

First, we must ask ourselves why are the most powerful financial houses on earth just now beginning to draw a line in the proverbial sand? Is it the pressure from the banking industry in general, as they watch the outflow of monies into crypto? Fear of losing profits?

Second, is it the threat to the social order via the potential bankruptcy of governments, by way of a dying banking empire? In other words, why do we need a banking empire at all if governments could essentially finance the economies of the world with a blockchain, directly? Surely, if this occurred, the governments would appoint large dominant information tech industries to head the effort. Can you think of a few?

Third, efforts are being made by the old guard (banks and investment houses) to both invest in cryptocurrencies and educate themselves in their use. These old guard types do not apparently like the fact that bitcoin is so public and many privacy-seeking individuals feel the same way.

Profit from their Greed?

Based upon these observations, we may be able to judge where the old guard might go. Where they might pour billions of dollars, making the rise of bitcoin appear as a blip on the screen of crypto.

If we could figure that out, determine where the vast sums of money sitting in retirement accounts and hedge funds might flow, could we then profit from them?

Or are we off the mark again? Will the banking industry utilize inhouse blockchains or will they contract out? My bet? They will contract out.

For some of us it will be difficult to let go of bitcoin. It has a cult-like following. Many will retain a few BTC’s even after a crash, on the outside chance of a resurgence. There is always a chance it can be fixed. After all, it has staying power.

So, what do privacy-seeking individuals and banks require when using money? Let’s just suppose for a moment, that the money is a cryptocurrency?

Well, individuals don’t want their account balances made public. They don’t necessarily want you to know where they spend and how much. So, let’s make privacy optional.

Banks are the same way. They wish to keep your balances between you and them – and regulatory agencies.

What’s the problem? Few if any cryptocurrencies are geared this way. They are most often, completely open to public inspection. Anyone, including criminals, could potentially find your money.

How about customer service? Name one cryptocurrency that you can call 24/7 and discuss a funds transfer or a lost deposit. If you have named one, congratulations.

Now, can you name a private/public blockchain with world class developers, a business plan, open source software, that is liked by the old guard and crypto-fans alike? An actual regulated and above-board company?

If you said Ripple, that’s not on the mark.

I want to profit from a crypto-coin that has few coins, relatively speaking, when compared to bitcoin, and good volume. Over 10 million dollars a day.

I would like a cryptocurrency that the old guard – remember them – is curious about.

I don’t want an ICO coin and I am not thrilled about pre-mines, but a shared tax to help support the coin would not put me off.

The newest and best tech is a must. A step ahead of bitcoin with the ability to add fast updates, if needed.

A staff of developers who are motivated by rewards, i.e., money, to continue to support the coin for as long as it remains successful.

Can you name this coin?

I think I might have a clue.

And it’s not Monero, Aeon or Bytecoin either.

Not NavCoin or Dash.

But it is listed in the top twenty here.

No, not NEM or Iota.


Please leave any comments below.

Note: this should not be considered investment advise.


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Bitcoin Bears Spotted

Bitcoin Bears Spotted

As if you didn’t already know that the bears were eating bitcoin’s lunch, right?

But is this a deeper downtrend? Is bitcoin a bubble or not? How long will it last? And finally, will bitcoin crash?

Can we trust the big banks and Jamie Dimon to give us the straight dope? That bitcoin is a fraud? No, we can’t. Why? Because so is the fiat dollar and every bank that uses them — all “legal” frauds.

There is no real money to be had, save gold or silver (maybe copper). On the other hand, at least some of the coinage used by nations remains real and retains actual value. I mean, at least the nickels and quarters in the US. The pennies are now copper coated zinc. But the paper fiats? The electronic representations thereof, sitting in our digital bank accounts?

But just maybe we can trust one voice out there. A lone voice of reason in an otherwise crazy crypto-world. Someone beyond the control of anyone.

Why am I telling you this?

Maybe I can save you some money and if so, just maybe you’ll read more of my blog. And then the little money fairies will come and dust me with ad sharing revenue and I can quit my day job.

Fat chance.

In the world of cryptocurrency one character seems to stand out: Smooth. If you don’t know about him, you probably should.

I scan his comments a lot. Get a feel of the crypto-verse, if you will. The only thing is, he comments on several threads and you need to pick them out. Little gems in the digital ether spread out like crumbs.

I have blogged about Smooth before and won’t bore you with details of his/her/their exploits. Instead, I’m here to display a bit if news. What Smooth says, since he often responds to questions on Reddit and bitcointalk.org.

I’m not after the technical stuff, but the layman stuff. Stuff better than Jamie Dimon, since Smooth lives in coding world. Dimon lives in the government fiat world.

Will the crypto-market nosedive soon? And for how long? That kind of stuff.

As many of us know, Smooth is a developer at Monero and works on Aeon. He’s the lead dev at Aeon, not to be confused with Aeternity, a newcomer. Here’s a bit about Aeon, if you want a rundown.

Still, this is all conjecture. Smooth’s persona could be a well-constructed piece of disinformation. Not that his comments are misleading, but his identity is well camouflaged, as it should be in today’s monetary culture.

For the sake of argument, I’ll say that Smooth is a guy, middle aged, who works near a Silicon Valley-like hub and codes. He could be American or maybe even a Romanian immigrant. He may have a French sidekick and several Monero devs to keep him in line.

More conjecture. Smooth is none other than fluffypony’s alter ego. Fluffy being the face of Monero, Riccardo Spagni.

In short, we don’t know Smooth. I’m sure someone does, but the anonymous handle and picture of The Big Lebowski may not really give us the entire story.

Nonetheless, Smooth does leave a lot of commentary, which I hope he will continue to do, even at the risk of being discovered by the governments with their ability to ferret out writing patterns with super, but not-so-secret software. A forensic examination of style and so on, used to compare against known samples.

Smooth must know about this. Maybe he’s not as paranoid as he should be.

Aeon could be Monero’s test bed, as well. And a backup plan if Monero should crash. Hence the recent remarks by Smooth wanting to clarify that Aeon is not a fork of Monero?

At any rate, here are some recent ‘out of context’ tidbits from Smooth. They can serve as very educational – enlightening. Maybe they are also good to use as sort of a touchstone.


A refresher on Bytecoin. Here’s what Smooth says…

His responses on Bitcointalk.org:

Regarding Bytecoin and the ongoing shady dealings therein:

Their intentions were to launch the coin as a premine scam and take a lot of money out of the coin and put it into their own pockets. That of necessity requires inducing other people to put a lot of money into the coin. Which they are still trying to do at some level with the continued (if laughable) shenanigans with “Jenny” and other shills.

This was for those of you who still think Bytecoin has a chance.


Now onto the bear problem. More Smooth goodies.

Monero Speculation:

To clarify I’m not pointing to a bearish sentiment (though one could point not only to the China news but to the increased regulatory pressure from the SEC in the US, Canada, Singapore, and others as potentially bearish) as much as to increased downside risk and decreased short term upside.

Personally, I am acting on this belief by reducing my risk profile in crypto positions to those I’m more comfortable holding through a possible correction or even bear market, but that doesn’t mean selling all or going short.

Monero…I haven’t yet sold any at all (in a long time), but I’m considering lightening up on that too here. >100 USD/XMR and >1 billion USD cap is great, but again, short- to mid-term, relatively reduced upside and increased risk.

And a follow up…

…I see a good possibility this current bull run in crypto may be close to running out of steem [sic]. That doesn’t mean crypto doesn’t have a bigger future but it requires both internal and external changes, which may come more slowly…

Monero Speculation (and crypto-speculation in general).

Have we reached a sort of crypto-market saturation? Are the bears about to come out?

…when considering exponential growth of viral ideas. Compare…with 2014 when no one gave a…about crypto and you would literally have to poll hundreds or thousands of Average Joes…to find someone interested in it much less owning it.

This does not mean there is literally no one left who could buy who hasn’t bought yet. Most likely, by the time we realize that has happened it will be too late and the price will already be crashing, unless you are able to call the exact top (unlikely). It means we are getting close. The balance of risks has become more symmetric. The remaining upside is quite comparable to the plausible downside.

Note, I’m talking about short to mid-term upside without [a] major change to conditions…not  about [a] plausible…scenario where crypto replaces gold or the dollar as a global reserve currency…I’m making a short- to mid-term trading observation based on current market psychology and demographics. If you think that outcome is likely (enough) and are comfortable with large drawdowns while waiting for it then by all means buy/hold/increase your long-term holdings.

And…

I had that happen…right around the time of the market top in 2013.

It is a bearish indicator. It means that the wave of FOMO [Fear of Missing Out] has reached the masses. The only difference at that point is how many decide to buy and how much, but the important fact is that there are really no more big [sic] wave of people to reach (at least not ones with money). When Mayweather and Paris Hilton are promoting ICOs, when it is being covered on CNBC, Bloomberg, etc. every day, who is left? Price gains are certainly still possible, but the risks have become a lot more symmetric.

There is one more wave to reach and that is conservative institutional money that will allocate to crypto as an asset class given ETFs (or similar vehicles) but not before. That’s potentially a big wave ($1 T or more). It may or may not happen this cycle.

What Smooth meant by “this cycle” is a bit ambiguous. What’s more, the ETF issue may never work at all.


The point of all of this? Pull in your crypto-horns or wait this out.

For those of you wondering about Steem.

Regarding Steem, Smooth indicated:

You can look at economic reality here…the mining was not competitive. It was at near-zero cost, based on asymmetric and privileged information, and therefore very much unlike competitive mining that takes place over a significant period when there is ample opportunity for information to disseminate (and the developers are not admittedly and deliberately exploiting their exclusive access to that information to gain a very large non-competitive advantage).

So the outcome is effectively (about) the same as a premine, regardless of how they got there. (And conversely such an outcome would most assuredly not be achieved with competitive mining over an extended period as with Bitcoin or Litecoin.) Achieving the equivalent outcome of token distribution and investor funding of developer efforts via a different mechanism is effectively synonymous with looking past form to function (i.e. “economic reality”) to me, but I’m neither a prosecutor, nor a judge, nor a jury. There is a small caveat here but I don’t think it ultimately changes the conclusion so I will omit for brevity (and economy of my writing effort).

Lately, scam accusations have plagued Steem.io.


And again in the Monero Speculation thread, but more about bitcoin, Smooth advises:

BTC is being priced more as a risky speculative asset at this point than as a safe haven.

From Reddit:

Regarding Bitcoin (Redditor: smooth_xmr):

Bitcoin can’t be described as secure under the model in the white paper.


Regarding the forking of Cryptocurrencies.

A recent goodie:

Literally anyone can hard fork any (open source) cryptocurrency. It can’t be prevented.

The only thing that matters is whether a community (of any significance) supports the fork, and likewise whether a community (of any significance) continues to support that original. End of story.


Based on Smooth’s comments over the past several weeks and the actual cryptocurrency bear market occurring, we might want to heed his advice. Set aside some of your profits if and until the dust settles.

Smooth does not exactly specify how to do this, but Tether might be an option for some.

In any case, as we are often reminded by Smooth, critical thinking is a requirement in the crypto-world.

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