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The existence of Bitcoin

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Bitcoin is an illusion, a mass hallucination, we understand. These are just numbers in cyberspace, a mirage, without substance. Bitcoin is only supported by the faith of the idiots who buy it and the bigger fools who buy it from these idiots. And you know? All of this is true.

Dollars are also an illusion. Almost all of our dollars, about 90%, are purely abstract – they do not exist in any tangible form. The dollar is what is called a fiat currency. The temptation of the leaders of nation-states to make money has always been almost overwhelming. Inflation is one of the apparent results of this policy.

The bitcoin blockchain was created, in part, to remedy this historic weakness. Once the 21 millionth bitcoin is mined, the system will no longer produce it. There are dramatic differences between cryptocurrencies and dollars. For example, transactions in the bitcoin system are recorded in an unverifiable ledger that does not rely not on the authority of banks or governments but on the power of a public computer network that everyone free to join.

Besides, once again, the quantity of bitcoins is definitively fixed. Money itself is an illusion, a mass hallucination. You work hard to do it, cultivate it and keep it, but the only thing that motivates it is its symbolic power, which is excellent, seen from a certain angle.

The theory behind all cryptocurrencies, including bitcoins, is that records produced by a distributed computer network can be made inviolable, thereby theoretically guaranteeing the strength of currency better than governments. And so far, despite some significant roadblocks, the blockchain system on which bitcoin is built has at least partially proven this theory.

The fight for the stability of any currency is always being lost because wherever there is a chance to play or forge a transaction, human nature is such that some will try to cheat. Even the limited and precarious stability we have in developed countries requires the vigilance and hard work of countless people, and there is never any certainty. The struggle to preserve the illusion that money is real is never over and can never be.

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