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Even more things that happened
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In this issue:
This issue is a grab-bag of extra stories and news scraps that I thought were interesting but didn’t *quite* make the cut into the main newsletter for whatever reason. This post was initially available only to paid subscribers, but has now unlocked for everyone.
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Other things that happened:
This BIS video about how central banks are the only institutions that can be trusted with the power of money features a literal money printer running endlessly in the background. Unintentional self-parody?
Web3 influencer Packy McCormick struggled to justify how web3 could actually improve real life transactions like real estate markets and the video clip is being shared to dunk on web3. It’s obvious that McCormick doesn’t have a great handle on the arguments but I do actually think real estate genuinely could benefit from market liquidity improvements brought about by decentralized ledgers, even if translating from deed to property still needs to be backstopped by physical courts. Reducing the bureaucratic cruft of real estate markets is a genuine opportunity — it may not actually require a blockchain, but it’s not crazy to think that a blockchain could help.
Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) investing is the well meaning but naive belief that you can couple two profoundly complex systems (morality and the economy) and somehow the result will be sensible and predictable. It’s deeply foolish. Economic decisions are so multi-variate and chaotic that we can barely predict their consequences let alone grapple with their moral weight. To wit, weapons manufacturers are now seeking ESG classification. Weapons are ESG assets as long as they are pointed at the right people.
Lars is like Diogenes with his lantern, searching for an honest blockchain game. Dark Forest is an interesting zero-knowledge PvP strategy game. It uses zero-knowledge proofs to create a cryptographic "fog-of-war" where no one knows the entire game state but players can still trust the rules. Neat!
Kraken CEO Jesse Powell started a culture war in corp Slack just for funzies and then blamed "the wokes" for creating a distraction. I’ve talked about this before but the idea of politically neutrality is a fiction spread by the powerful to silence dissent. If you think other people’s politics are intruding on your politically neutral space you are both privileged and blind to your own privilege. That’s an especially dumb belief to hold at a crypto exchange, given how explicitly political cryptocurrencies are by nature.
Don’t click this thread. There is nothing good on this thread.
The price of Bitcoin is too volatile to allow a spot Bitcoin ETF but the SEC did manage to approve an ETF for shorting Bitcoin. So that’s nice.
Presented without comment: