Bit by Bit

by Jeffrey Tucker

70% Liberty, 30% Bitcoin. Both the liberty part and the Bitcoin part of this book are aimed at a mainstream audience so I gained a few new ways to articulate stuff I already knew but didn't really learn that much new information.

However one thing I did learn was a good argument for Bitcoin as money under the Mises regression theorem. Roughly, the expected future purchasing power of money explains its current purchasing power (the reason to collect money now, as opposed to collecting other goods, is the knowledge that you can use the money in the future to buy things you want). This would be a circular argument (it's purchasing power explains its purchasing power) unless by stepping back through time (the current purchasing power is explained by yesterday's purchasing power, and so on) we can find the point where the thing being used as money had some original value. That is it originally provided some value before being used as a means of exchange. I've heard plenty of arguments against Bitcoin strictly because it has never had any value in this sense unlike other forms of money like gold, sea shells, etc. You can't eat Bitcoin, use it in manufacturing, or make cool jewelry out of it, so why should we use it as money?

Tucker claims that Bitcoins original value is its unique payment system. Individual Bitcoins and the blockchain are intrinsically tied. You can't have one without the other. You can have cash without visa or gold without bullion, but you can't have Bitcoin without the blockchain payment system. Tucker points out that in the early days of Bitcoin before it was tied to any monetary value (before the 10,000 BTC pizza transaction) people were testing out sending Bitcoins to each other and begun to see value in the Blockchain payment system before there was any value in Bitcoin. And thus the root of the current purchasing power of Bitcoin is the blockchain payment system tied to it.

Will definitely be my go to recommendation to a future liberty and Bitcoin convert.