Because of Bitcoin’s disruptive nature, it has captured the imagination of the Internet community, and it has flexed its muscle with that support. This has led to governments reacting, but it is a reaction of fear.
Cyber security expert and Bitcoin backer John McAfee says the only fear that Bitcoin users can have is that governments will act on their own self-involved fear.
Cryptocurrencies were created to solve the problems that plague banking, and as such they are looking to cut out the middleman, which is banks and government regulators.
This lack of central exchange puts governments, which make their income by taxing the movement of money, in a bind, said MGT Capital Investments Inc. chief and technology pioneer John McAfee.
“Our income taxes are the greatest source of revenue, but if everybody’s using Bitcoin, the government doesn’t know what your income is. They can’t tax it, and if you choose to say I didn’t have anything, they cannot prove otherwise,” McAfee said.
“It will eventually frighten every nation state, but it doesn’t matter what they do, there’s no way you can create a law or to legislate something that will stop Bitcoin or any cryptocurrency because technically, you cannot.”
But should be self-regulated
Despite McAfee’s hugely bullish sentiment on digital currencies and their disruptive model, that does not mean that they can go about unregulated. McAfee admits that the space needs regulations, especially when it comes to ICOs.
McAfee has a different view when it comes to ICOs, he, like many other leaders in related fields, believes they are scams:
“China is right about one thing, the ICOs, there are lots of scams, lots of people who are fraudulently taking money from other people, so that’s got to stop. But I don’t think governments can stop it. We as users and the Bitcoin community have to be self-regulated”.
This is still a very new ecosystem that is dealing with loads of issues, trying to find out the best ways to handle them. From security and education to forks and governments trying to get in people’s way, self-regulation sounds like a good idea, but is probably a long way off.
“The fear is in the fear of governments and central banks, like JPMorgan, which is America’s largest bank,” he said. “The CEO is so concerned that he acted like a madman and called Bitcoin a fraud, and said someone is going to get killed eventually. It’s like, what are you talking about? It’s nonsense. So banks and governments are the ones that have the fear. Well they should have some fear. They have taken control and power away from their citizens for hundreds of years. It’s time that we, as citizens, took that power back.”