Recently, Ari Paul, co-founder and CIO of BlockTower Capital, tweeted a December 23 news highlighting a rally in Hong Kong, condemning “a police crackdown on a major fundraising platform for anti-government protesters and to call for sanctions against HSBC.”
His post mentioned technology Billionaire Mark Cuban’s history of being an honest critic of Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. In addition, Mark said that Bitcoin is “too difficult to use, too easy to hack, way too easy to lose, too hard to understand, and too hard to assess value,” although he does not oppose it.
As reported by South China morning post, police froze funds raised by the Spark Alliance platform to support protesters. In November, HSBC closed Spark Alliance’s bank account.
Permissionless cryptocurrency is a defence
While Paul was pointing at the fact that possessing digital currency like Bitcoin is beneficial at times like people are going through in Hong Kong, where their property is being seized.
In response, Mark “asked” Paul a series of questions, making a point that even Bitcoin can be frozen in any exchange and that “crypto works in oppressive regimes until the dictator feels threatened by it.”
Paul explained that even though he believes Bitcoin is a safer bet, it is not perfect.
He clarified that there is nothing that cannot be confiscated in all contexts, and called Bitcoin “seizure resistant.” Paul also said, “There is no perfect solution against oppression, but bitcoin is a powerful defensive weapon.”
“Used by an expert, bitcoin is probably truly impossible to confiscate or censor, but few people can or will use it this way. The more powerful point is that it impedes mass censorship or mass confiscation, and in practice, this is a game changing difference.”
At the end of the long discussion on how Bitcoin could be a better option, a Twitter user @CryptoMarcobro commented,
“Well I’m willing to bet Mark Cuban learned at least one thing from this chain of Tweets.
Thank you Ari Paul for all that you do in this space!
Much respect for both of these Warriors!”
To this, Mark replied,
“I learned that BTC ultra enthusiasts still think they are invisible to the government tactics they condemn, even after admitting that only the most advanced users have the knowledge required to avoid those measures while the vast majority of BTC are and will remain susceptible,”
“False binary that doesn’t at all reflect the nuanced arguments I provided,” Paul said. He also added that, in his opinion, it was equivalent to saying, “holders of USD don’t know their money can be confiscated without trial.” He called this “reductive, and…wrong.”
Amidst several comments in support of Bitcoin, and questioning his knowledge of Bitcoin’s use cases, Mark jumped in to compare the Bitcoin “bandwagon” to stock supporters. Similar to Bitcoin supporters, stock “partisans” on the Yahoo Finance boards would “try to convey how right they were about their favourite stock and how wrong everyone else was for any number of technical or other reasons.”
Bitcoin faced similar criticisms to the Internet and personal computers, when they were introduced, said Paul.
The exchange of knowledge continued, with Mark reflecting on how it was easy for Bitcoin to take over digital products that were introduced in the “analogue world,” in terms of adoption. Mark said, “BTC is a digital product born into a digital world.”
“Pokeman and Candy Crush have taken off more than BTC. And why didn’t they use a btc crowdfunding solution ?”
Although there was no clear conclusion to this discussion, Paul stayed firm on his opinion of Bitcoin being a great option for people in need.