Lessons for bitcoiners to deter crackdowns

Lessons for bitcoiners to deter crackdowns

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White supremacist demonstrations of any kind in the U.S. tend to spark an overwhelming negative response. Sometimes the negative response really is negative… as in unhelpful.

“What you resists… persists,” as the saying goes. But one helpful response came in the form of a renewed focus on some things that apparently do work.  One German town, facing repeated marches by neo-Nazis, responded with mockery and another strategy more relevant to the crypto community:

For every meter the supremacists marched, 10 Euros reportedly got donated to “EXIT Deutschland,” an organization that helps people leave extremist groups.

Our monetary endeavor, like that German town, is destined to be visited by bad guys many times… they are probably just getting started. Unlike the isolated and limited Klansman-types, these bad guys have what the real Nazis had in 1939: “legitimately” obtained control over nation-states and a rapacious tendency to project abuses far outside their borders. When these folks “visit,” you don’t have time to organize mocking demonstrations in their path; you probably just have time to grab a camera and decide whether you’ll open your door or have it rammed in.

Sun Tzu said: “… what enables the wise sovereign and the good general to strike and conquer, and achieve things beyond the reach of ordinary men, is foreknowledge.”

We lack tactical foreknowledge of when and where the world-government-in-Washington will strike against generally harmless bitcoiners each time. But we don’t lack strategic foreknowledge. We know that it will happen, and we have the peaceable ability to, as Sun Tzu would put it, “lay plans.” The part where our “German town” is imitable is the donation part.

There apparently isn’t an organization focused on helping Washington’s goons and its foreign collaborators quit their jobs. Maybe there should be, but, as one of the goons once put it… you go to war with the army you have. The crypto community does have organizations which attempt to boost crypto-adoption, and one might argue a new crypto-adopter is worth as much as a rehabilitated Fed-Goon. What if we were to set up some sort of protocol or regimen by which each crypto-arrest, globally, results in a mass donation to one or more of these organizations? Each legal attack on bitcoiners… already results in publicity and perhaps increased unity, both of which can help our cause but aren’t always enough to deter such attacks. If these blows resulted in significantly greater adoption as well, that might deter more of them than the negative publicity does.

Lessons from Star Control 2

In 1992, a computer game appeared on the scene which was arguably the second or third best of the decade: Star Control 2. In SC2 there was a ship called the Utwig Jugger. Its effectiveness came mostly from the fact that it could convert incoming damage into power. You had to hit the “convert” button at just the right moment, the moment when the enemy shot landed on your Jugger. That’s roughly what we need to do: Configure ourselves so that each attack doesn’t just make our community stronger… it makes us a lot stronger.

The instinctive response is to rush to the defense of the point where the attack occurred, but that’s not always best. For example, focusing on a legal defense and lawyer fees only works if the defendant is going to receive a real trial or real judicial process. In many jurisdictions including the U.S. Federal system, the process against our people is likely to be more of a show trial or a collection of threats against family members.

Lessons from history

After the 1941 anti-Nazi coup at Belgrade, it was obvious the German government was going to invade Yugoslavia within months. In reality there were only weeks to prepare.  Berlin was going to dominate Slovenija and Croatia immediately and be there for a while no matter what Belgrade did. Churchill suggested (or at least later reported that he had suggested) an asymmetric strategy for the “defense” of Yugoslavia. Instead of trying to defend the north, the Slovene border, against an unstoppable Wehrmacht, Belgrade should use its forces to strike south at the Italians trying to hold Albania. The latter move wouldn’t save them from invasion, but at least it was achievable. The specter of a victory, even symbolic, at this stage would have been electrical. Had it occurred, the war and the duration of Yugoslavia’s occupation would surely have been shorter.

Applying them to crypto

In the same way, the best “defense” when the modern tyrants strike our people may be to do something achievable. Perhaps in some other area of our choosing… such as a move which boosts crypto adoption.

As Churchill put it, “You can do many things with impunity if you do not keep on doing them over and over again.” German anti-Nazis were presumably blessed with a probably-humorless enemy that marched through the same location repeatedly or at times known in advance. It gave these anti-Fascists a leisurely chance to “lay plans.” Knowing the “place and the time of the coming battle,” they could “concentrate from the greatest distances in order to fight.” Without fighting. Their questions of time and place had been answered earlier than ours would.

For us, the answerable questions would be:

  1. What should be the default reaction to an arrest?
  2. If the reaction is a donation to an individual, organization or basket of organizations best suited to widening crypto adoption…which organizations(s) should it be?
  3. What would qualify as a “bitcoiner arrest worthy of this reaction?” How would that be defined?
  4. Would a traditional crowdfunding service like GoFundMe need to be used, or is a blockchain-based crowdfunding service ready for the task?

Starting a whole new ICO is complicated and seems wildly excessive for something like this, when the weak link in the chain would probably be getting it from “an idea” to “functioning project.” Using GoFundMe seems inappropriate when there are apparently blockhain-based crowdfunding endeavors waiting to be mainstreamed. Waves Platform seems to have a setup that focuses on this; presumably there are others. You may have better ideas.

I’ve posted several threads asking people what they think the best organizations are for spreading crypto adoption.  In typical internet fashion, the plurality of “votes” were unusable. “The people” seemed to be a top vote getter, along with “word of mouth.” Can’t really donate to those. Purse came in tied for second with Bitcoin.com. Each got two votes… everything else got one vote or less. I don’t know what I’d vote for. Maybe a basket of two organizations: Purse + Bitcoin.com to make it even more of a tie.

Take action

Ultimately talk is about as expensive as a Quark coin, so what I’m going to do is take a very little bit of action and see if any of you join in.  My default plan is to go ahead and try to start a skeleton version of this project on the Waves Platform. I’ll post updates about the project, and you can get involved, on my Free Morpheus Facebook group.

If you don’t do Facebook, you can e-mail me: RidleyReport at li ve peri od c om (intentionally obfuscated to deter spambots). Most of the activity will need to come from you… I’m only here to get the thing started and see if there is enough interest to continue.

It is our duty to “conquer” our enemy the way Martin Luther King conquered George Wallaceby changing everyone’s opinion around “him” until his aggressive views are isolated, recanted and driven to the margins of society. At that point we can befriend and perhaps aid the former foe. The key to reaching these “sunlit highlands” is activity, and the most effective activity appears to be that which widens crypto use.

Featured image from Wikimedia commons

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