Bitcoin dark web drug ring busted after dealer doxes

Drug attic brother opened an account in a friends name to buy bitcoin. He has had an opioid dependence. Is it safe to assume he could be trying to order Fentanyl from overseas via bitcoin? /r/Bitcoin

Drug attic brother opened an account in a friends name to buy bitcoin. He has had an opioid dependence. Is it safe to assume he could be trying to order Fentanyl from overseas via bitcoin? /Bitcoin submitted by ABitcoinAllBot to BitcoinAll [link] [comments]

Dear US govt...

  1. Stop spending my tax money on troops. the last time that ANY use of US military was justified was pearl harbor. Americans do not need bases overseas. We did not need to "beat the communists." We certainly do not need to be out there in the middle east "nation building". Those are american lives being lost for nothing but pointless political scores.
  2. Start spending my money on developing american energy independence. If all american cars were electric, we wouldn't be dependent on saudi oil. We would never had to interfere with saddam hussein. Kuwait would have never been invaded because the oil wouldn't be worth money. 9/11 would have never happened because bin ladin would have never been radicalized because of the gulf war. We wouldn't need to prop israel up, because nothing in the region would have any utility. Energy independence would have altered all of this. Forget about the environment if you want. Energy independence is the right call, purely from a geopolitical standpoint.
  3. For fucks sake, stop taxing cryptocurrency to cryptocurrency trade transactions. Nobody can keep that shit straight. I traded eth ->zrx -> btc ->usdc and then I sold a bunch of puts that paid... in oEth. Which doesn't even have value until redeemed from the smart contract. The fuck am I supposed to put on my tax returns? oeth? It's a logic block until redeemed, and until then its a floating variable that moves all over the place in value.
  4. Get the voting system fixed. This shit of pitting people against each other using both gerrymandering and winner take it all voting instead of ranked choice voting is wrong. It allows insiders to manipulate the elections, and it creates absolute insanity. The current system is how we got donald trump vs hillary. Neither side could vote for third party, despite many wanting to. What will it take to get us there? Armed revolution and general insurrection? Dead bodies in the streets? Protesters setting themselves on fire? What? The founding fathers warned about factions. You are the embodiment of hamilton's worst nightmares.
  5. Stop printing money. Move back to a semblance of sound money. People do not want to go into debt to buy stuff. Debt is toxic. It is a system that enslaves people, makes them default, and throughout the entire process of defaulting, their stress goes up, and they have health problems because of it. People should not be forward loading their debt into the future as the optimal strategy. Right now, your system of money printing makes debt more appetizing. And that is wrong. There is a reason we buy bitcoin. We fucking hate you and your system. The money printing is theft from the people, and the fed needs to be held to account for the theft of trillions of dollars from the american people.
  6. Stop it with the surveillance network. STOP IT. The price of a surveillance state is too high a price for freedom. I would rather be unsafe and free, rather than be safe but stuck in a prison. And the to the CIA... You are a bunch of goatfuckers that ALL deserve to be strung up in nooses for crimes against humanity. You led the overthrow of pretty much every south american countries democratically elected government at one time or another in the last 100 years. And you are responsible for hoarding and deploying vulnerabilities instead of working with american software manufacturers to get them patched. You are a rogue organization, and every single one of you deserves a full military court martial for crimes against the people of the united states, and against the world. You have destabilized our diplomacy, and tarnished our reputation.
  7. Legalize ALL drugs. Half of the problems in law enforcement go back to our prohibition against drugs. Let people use them in the safety of their own homes. Regulate them. Provide users with clean safe ways of using. Educate people. Provide quitting services for people who want to quit. But at the end of the day, our minds are our minds, and you the state have no business trying to regulate peoples state of consciousness. Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness includes chemically induced happiness.
submitted by Ghostcarapace3 to Libertarian [link] [comments]

I met my now wife 14 years old. I'm now 28. It's a long story

So i'll take it back to the start, but try and be as short and quick as possible.
I met my wife at 14, we hit off and quickly became inseparable. She lived about a 2hour train ride and we would happily catch public transport every weekend to see each one another. Skipping school etc. It was some of the best days of my life :)
It was a great few years, as soon as we turned 18 we got our own house and started living together, pretty young I know. But I managed to get a decent paying job so it wasn't an issue. We began partying, clubbing, experimenting with drugs. Alcohol and drug use started to affect our relationship, we began to fight and argue a lot. I thought about ending the relationship. I was 18, all my mates were out there single having fun... we broke up for a few weeks. I didn't get with anyone, either did she that I know of.
A year or two go by, I had stopped the drug use and partying and focussed on working and making money, my wife seemed to enjoy partying a lot more than myself. She would stay up late and I would often go to bed. This was a very normal occurrence. At this stage, I was probably 20-21 years old. I wanted to settle down and focus on buying a house, being an adult. I know 21 is super young but I'm not normal haha.
After working hard for a year. I had saved enough for a house deposit and an engagement ring. We built our dream house and I continued to work hard. We managed to go on several overseas holidays a year. She never really had to save or worry about money. I had set us up very comfortably by the age of 23.
Fast forward a few years. We have been living in our home for 5 years, had 2 dogs and began partying again after ticking the house and wedding off the list. We had traveled to probably 30 countries by this stage and I was making more money than ever. I became obsessed with cryptocurrency. Having been an early investor in bitcoin. It consumed my life. I pushed everyone away, reading charts, chatting to friends online all over the world and making ridiculous amounts of money. Giving my wife whatever she wanted, thinking she was happy... I had also quit my day job as a carpenter. Travelling to Bali or Japan with friends. Leaving my wife at home because she had to work.
This went on for about a year and half. The markets crashed I lost 80% of everything I had made. It hurt me so much and impacted the relationship due to my mood swings.
We eventually got back on track, traveling, working, and just enjoying life.
This brings us to last year. Whilst on holiday in the US, New York be exact. We headed home from a great night out at a bar overlooking the Brooklyn bridge. It was absolutely amazing.
Arriving back to our Airbnb. I picked up her phone and saw a message from someone. I hadn't seen this messaging app and immediately recognized the guy's name. Patrick. I read a few more messages and absolutely broke down. She was telling another guy she loves him, sending him pics whilst on holiday with me. I never thought she would be the one to cheat, completely trusted her. I had never cheated and was 100% faithful.
I left the Airbnb and got a hotel for the night, I couldn't sleep all night. My mind racing, heart-pumping... I'm on the other side of the world with this person who has just hurt me more than I could ever imagine. We still had another two weeks left on the trip, visiting her mum and family in Mexico.
After two days locked away in the hotel room, I decided I needed to talk to her. I had so many questions.. why, how, for how long, do you love him? She knew she had fucked up and was very remorseful... But i also knew i fucked up. I completely pushed her away and put work/money before her. Thinking I was doing the right thing providing for her.. when she wanted me emotionally aswell.
We spoke for days locked away in that airbnb.. and I decided to continue on with the trip with the plan to decide on what I would do when we get back to Australia.
Back in Australia things were rough. I didn't know what to do. She broke my trust, I had developed serious trust issues but after being together so long. I just couldn't bring myself to end the relationship and get divorced.
This was over a year ago... I finally built up the courage to move out but can't stop talking to her. I love this woman so much. Shes been my best friend for half of my life and all I've known. I come from a broken home and virtually have no family. Her family welcomed me with open arms and i absolutely adore her mum. Losing her I fear i will lose her family also.
How do I end it completely? We have tried being friends but just fall back into our comfort zone.
I feel like running away and starting fresh...
submitted by jassem91 to relationship_advice [link] [comments]

Lessons learned - Crypto and Divorce - In January I was a millionaire thanks to BTC, then my wife divorces me and now I have $30,000 AMA

Crossreferencing u/nanoissuperior He wrote earlier today: https://www.reddit.com/CryptoCurrency/comments/a3n6uw/in_january_i_was_a_millionaire_thanks_to_nano_now/
Title: In January I was a millionaire thanks to Nano, now I have $25,000 AMA

I was replying to his post, but my reply ended up being a bit too large as a reply and steered off-topic, albeit an interesting one. So I decided to make it its own post, because there may be a good lessons to be learned and hoping some will come forward with good information to be shared.
I hope it can help anyone on this sub avoid the costly mistakes that I made. Here it goes: FLAIR: LEGAL (not in the list)
----
u/nanoissuperior are you who I think you are? I won't give out any further identifying clues, but I happen to know someone in the exact same position that could have written that exact same headline. If you read the first paragraph, you'll know if you know me.
The person I know bought Nano really early, based on a tip from a friend. I got in much later. By the time he told me it had already spiked to the $5 range, when I ended up buying. I then sold in the $20's so it was a good buy nonetheless. We were former colleagues at a large, large software company somewhere in the PNW, I left the company to venture out on my own and try to launch some projects I had in mind and relocated overseas for a few years. We lost contact with each other during my time away, but we connected again during the market runup and started exchanging coin information on a daily basis during the big bull run of late 2017. That was a crazy time.... the market trend was a few degrees short of vertical for pretty much all coins!

Hey, guess what? Now that I think about it, I could have written that same headline myself! In January 2018 I was a Millionaire too! Not with Nano, but thanks to purchasing a good chunk of Bitcoin in 2011 at $1.20 each. I ended up a single digit millionaire with what I had left in Bitcoin around January of 2018.
And, just like you, today, from all that wealth, I have about $30.000 left, with little to show for. Can we call that even? Although my disaster was not caused entirely by market fluctuation; Mine is a more complex story and I am going to mention it, because hopefully, it could serve as a lesson to be learned for any crypto holder out there, so they don't make the make mistake I made: Don't trust anyone. Always be skeptical and watch out for your own interests. Anyhow, here it goes:
After 5 years overseas, I had enough and wanted to come back to the States. My wife stated her preference to stay abroad, but eventually, she conceded albeit reluctantly. We chose a small town in CO to settle, and landed in November of 2017. We had plans to settle down and considered purchasing a home with my/our new fortune, based on the market price during that period. At the same time, I was also hesitant about the inherent tax payments due caused by such large liquidation. I was trying to have to pay taxes as far away as possible. So, I decided to wait till New Year's Eve and started liquidating my crypto on January 1st, 2018 right after midnight. This way, I would have 16 months (till April, 2019) to pay any capital gains taxes, and I was confident at the time that the market would give me that for free, especially at the pace that it was going. I have been an early adopter and have since then acquired the high levels of verification and trading limits per week, with many exchanges, but for a large sum like this, I needed several separate transactions, over the course of several weeks, especially wanting to do it with a US-based exchange that was linked to a US bank accounts, to avoid overseas wire transfers, meaning more fees. (Yes, I did look at all OTC options, but for reasons not relevant to the story, I couldn't make it happen, so I had to use the traditional Exchange channels for asset liquidation).
My wife and I, initially had some fundamental disagreements on the gross amount to be spent and the type of property we should be purchasing. I wanted a smaller place, with a denser, younger community, where there'd be kids our son's age for him to play. She insisted that we should go big; we had been traveling for so many years, and we had not been able to call any of our past residences our home. It was time to settle and nest; She convinced me that we should own a property of our own that we would be proud of living in for years. One that we could own outright and would not easily outgrow. We ended up splurging and purchased in cash two luxury cars for ourselves and set our sights on a large dream house in the city's Golf & Country Club, free and clear, for us and our two kids. I don't even play golf, nor do I even like it, but, if it makes her happy and it is within the safe margins of making it happen, I figured, why not? My concerns were largely financial and the numbers were adding up. It was a bit tight against my personal safe margins, but, at the same time, I was imagining to never have to make, or even have to think about, a car or home mortgage payment ever again! Bitcoin is on a roll and there is no sign of it stopping. Fine. Let's do it, before I change my mind.
Now, I admit I was extremely lucky with choosing the time of when to sell the assets. I had no clue the market would take a dive in February, and so it seemed to many that I had timed the market perfectly, selling most of my coins in the first two weeks of January of 2018. Many called me a genius for selling at the very top, as if I had some sort of wisdom to know when it would drop; the truth is much less flattering; it was nothing but dumb luck, based on me wanting to pay taxes in 2018 and defer to 2019. Awesome, well done! Yeah? well, slow down, son, not so fast.
So, I gather the 7-digit lumpsum in January 2018 and we write a check for the full amount at closing in February on the property of her dreams. A property that could easily be showcased on a luxury Real Estate magazine cover. Also, remember we had just moved back to the United States with just a few suitcases each from overseas. We had no furniture, kitchenware, curtains, TV's, bed sheets, winter clothing and so many other essential things that one usually purchases over time, but which we now had to purchase all at once. Not a problem, Bitcoin had dropped slightly but still well above $15k, I believe, at the time. And, earlier, in January, I had diligently taken this expense into account and effortlessly set aside a small fortune for equipping such a large house with everything we would ever need, brand new. It seemed we were protagonists of one of the Home Makeover Shows.
Finally, after working day and night, prepping the house non-stop for days and when every piece of furniture had finally arrived, been unpacked and carried to its corresponding room, it seemed most of the essentials were in place and the hard work was done. I longed for pouring myself a Scotch and to finally sit down and enjoy the fruits of my labor. I head downstairs to the dedicated walk-in, cigar-humidor / wine / Scotch cellar in the basement and grab the better bottle of Whisky of the few bottles of Scotch that I had bought earlier in the week. On my way up, I remember feeling a sense of calm, combined with a glow of excitement and this undescribable profound inner peace, all at once. This was such a rare, natural, non-drug induced high that I had never experienced. It felt so good! This sense of accomplishment of achieving that one thing I had been chasing and longing for my entire life. I had expected I would be chasing this goal for the next 15-20 years, and yet, here it was. No, where I was, was even better than expected! A place where not even my parents, who still have to make their monthly mortgage payments. I had done it! With a smile from ear to ear, I take a deep breath of relief and while looking around the property, I think to myself: "It's perfect, everything is in place and I can finally call this our home. We are so lucky and we are going to live a great life. A life that few can only dream of. So many concerns will be lifted and become redundant. Everything will be better. I'll start a fire in one of our two fireplaces and I am going to begin enjoying my semi-retired life with the first sip of my drink. That will be the official start of our new life".
I head over to the kitchen to get a glass and some ice cubes, while I struggle to find which one is the freezer among the many drawers in the kitchen. It was then when I notice a handwritten note placed front and center on the kitchen counter. It is from my wife and read: "There is no easy way to say this, so I am just going to say it..... I want to legally divorce [ ...]". It continued saying that she had taken our son, and had unequivocally decided to leave me. She had already filed the paperwork for divorce and that I should expect to be served in the morning.
My bliss had lasted less than 5 minutes and in less than two seconds, it turned dark, somber and I saw it all crumbling down in front of me. Like a long-awaited rocket launch, years in preparation, which then unexpectedly explodes on the launch pad during the countdown. My stomach, heart and everything in my body just sank and melted into one ball of poison in my core. I felt like throwing up. I was completely blindsided; she had played the game all along, not giving me the slightest hint of what was being concocted in the background. She had already engaged with her lawyers weeks beforehand. Her mother was already in town from another state to help out with I don't know what. I had been gaslighted and was threatened by her that I needed to see a psychiatrist due to a change in my temper that I had supposedly developed - my temper was awesome: with BTC at that price? Everything was perfect! But I obeyed and went anyhow (this would later fit her story that she had to leave with the child because she feared for her safety due to my supposed temper for which I was under treatment, therefore, I must have this temper problem, see?). Also, the purchase of the overpriced home also seemed clearly premeditated: Price was the main driver of the decision making; not location, demographics, taxes, etc. It was the wrong neighborhood for us (people much older than us, retired, golfers and no kids the same age as our son to play with). Our house happened to also be the most expensive in the neighborhood. I can see it all so clearly now.
See, your crypto coins on the blockchain, are not within the US court's jurisdiction (or, at least, it's quite debatable - a gray area - ask me for the seed and I can tell you that I may have the seed, or that I may not have the seed, I may have the wrong seed, I may have forgotten it, I may have lost it - you can't prove I did not forget, or lost it, etc). However, once it is in FIAT in a bank, or invested in a property, the courts can rule on the asset(s), freeze, disburse or order a sale of the property, etc. It's done all the time.
Also, the coins were technically mine, and by definition private property (not to be divided during the divorce) as they were acquired before the marriage. I could not prove its origins (I bought many of them via direct messaging members on Bitcointalk.org and mining rather than exchanges, so no records, receipts or nothing to prove otherwise: the big exchanges like BitStamp and Coinbase didn't start operations till 2013, if I m not mistaken. Instead, I would talk to one of the forum members offering coins we'd agree on a price, I'd send a check to wherever the individual seller instructed me to (Russia, Bulgaria, Japan, UK. etc) and the coins would be deposited to whatever address I provided. Yes, it was quite crude at the time.
However, once I converted my coins to cash and used that cash to buy a property for the benefit of the family, it became common property and thus she then had rights to a portion of it when divided between the two parties should a divorce occur - which ended up being almost 3/4 of all assets.
I was robbed in broad daylight. By the one person, I trusted with my life. The one you should trust with your life. Your life partner. And while I was in complete denial, trying to bargain, I waited too long to obtain good legal representation. When I finally ended up getting a lawyer, I was quite distraught and I clearly did not do the proper research and this resulted in a less than stellar performance and detrimental to me at many key steps in the process. I had to switch legal representation right before mediation and I can't blame my new lawyer either, as (s)he did not have the required time to catch up on all the details, (s)he did his/her best, but I was ultimately strongarmed into conceding my soon-to-be-ex-wife to let her return to the house, in exchange to obtain 50% of my son's custody, with serious and strict clauses I had to abide by. So, I had to move out, find a hole in the wall in a student apartment, pay my rent and pay our kids pre-school, while she lives grandiose, without monthly payments in the country club, till the house sells, which will likely be in the spring of next year. Nice!
Due to my delay, legal mishandling and somehow every other element in her favor, she inexplicably ended up with around 3/4 of the worth of all assets, free and clear, no taxes due. Mind you, she has never financially contributed, nor made a single $ during our entire marriage. She has never worked and had $0 in her pocket when we married. She didn't even have a checking account, well in her thirties. She is no dummy; she is street smart, knows how to manipulate people, get her way with flirting and charm, while I am more intellectual and book smart. and She beat me hands-down. She is walking away with a sum of, not quite 7 figures, but close.
With what I am left with from the sale of the house, I am responsible to pay for all the capital gains taxes from the liquidation to the IRS, which are due in April 2019. I don't expect there to be more left over than the estimated $30k mentioned above.
Hate the market all you want, I made peace with the market and am keeping busy at hating my ex for a while for putting me in the same situation. She tripped me 1 yard before the finish line and pushed me in the prickly bushes, to cross it by herself. Go figure. When I am done hating her, I'll get back to rebuilding my life again from scratch. I am not worried, I have done it before. Just pissed, I was so close and that I was so naive to not see it coming.
Sorry, I am not meaning to hijack the thread, just wanted you to know that others may have lost more than just "free" money; money we didn't really have to work for. We were the lucky ones. It is what I keep telling myself to stop me from jumping off a bridge.
PS - Woah: Sorry for the wall of text; I was just going to write the first paragraph and ended up venting about my current situation. I know, I should take this issue to /depressed, /exes or /whereisthenearestbridgeIcanjumpfrom.
Hopefully, this can be a lesson to those holding crypto and some can learn what NOT to do. I learned the hard way and was left with nothing. Don't be a nice guy. Don't trust anyone with your crypto. Anyhow, I am sure either our vigilant subreddit bot, or one of the mods will remove my post for not adhering to rule, and if not, I am sure that you fine people will downvote me to hell. Go ahead. Take away from me the little Karma I left too! Thanks!

I learned many lessons, but here are some key ones [IANAL - any crypto-educated AL opinion appreciated here, thanks] :
- Understand the concept of private property - property you acquire before getting married. INAL - this depends on the state legislation, but it is hard to prove with crypto, especially if you obtained your crypto through foreign exchanges, outside of legal jurisdictions, the petitioner might not understand or willing to invest in obtaining subpoenas and requests to businesses operating overseas, as this may result costly.
- Get a lawyer who understands, or is willing to understand crypto, its benefits of being somewhat unreachable and how that can work for you. Don't let them shortchange you with: "well, let's just convert the rest to cash, because that I understand" type of reasoning.
- If you do go to mediation, the above applies as well. This arbitrator or mediator needs to be one that understands the intrinsic details of crypto - for example, during the ATH, I bought 6 digits worth in $USD of Stellar. I used the very first version of the software, supporting Stellar on my hardware device, and put it all in a cold storage wallet somewhere around January. I routinely checked on my coins on the blockchain and they are there. A few months later, I try to access my account and the device returns a different public address, which contains 0 funds. I am still trying to debug this issue with the manufacturer, but the fact is that I was accused of hiding these coins or negligence and was demanded that I paid half of what was lost. or not lost, out of my pocket for money that I didn't have access either. I tried to explain it in the simplest terms, there are risks involved with using first come software. There is no 1800 number, mo tech support. no CEO, no, you can't call the BBB and complain, etc and no one seemed to be able to understand, nor willing to either. It became a huge roadblock for which I had to concede, not cash, but a concession, I was not wanting to concede. The petitioner leaned on the fact that I was either wilfully cheating or stupid enough to lose the coins and managed to create enough doubt in my character and integrity and there was nothing rational I could explain that she, or anyone else in the room would understand. Perhaps mutually contracting a seasoned crypto expert that can offer a neutral view and give his/her opinion might be worth considering. Andreas, where were you when I needed you? :)
- Other examples were some coins I had bought in 2012 and gifted to some of her family's kids. I was holding these, till they would turn 16 for them to pay themselves their college, or so I told them. These coins were demanded back by the petitioner. Ok, I suggested that I would send them, but with a CHECKLOCKTIMEVERIFY value with a block height of let's say,10 years from now, out of fear that she would spend the coins and the kids would never know (they are toddlers). No one understood what I was talking about, I was made out the crazy one, I gave up, sent her the coins, unlocked and, just as I expected, within 20 minutes of receiving them, she spent $1200 worth of it (for a flight, I think). If you are the only one speaking your language, no one is willing to listen or make an effort to understand you.
- It appears my coins were private property, which means, that I acquired them before the marriage and in case of divorce, if I have not moved them or used them for the common good of the marriage, then they remain mine. However, I liquidated them and cash ended up in my checking account to be used to buy groceries, cars and eventually a house, and it is then that they became common property. Only once they landed in my checking account on which she is named on. It appears that had I taken proper legal precautions with documentation, or a company/trust, where that money would have gone, instead of my checking accounts, elsewhere, I would have still been able to be the legal proprietor of the resulting cash. I can't quite remember the details, but it as something that was explained to me afterward, and I honestly think I just tuned it out, because it made me sick to know I could have held on to my wealth. Perhaps a lawyer can chime in? Again, much of the lack of information and every misstep taken was because of dealing with people that are accustomed to traditional assets and will not deviate from it. Crypto is different and is treated differently. It is so important to know the strengths and weaknesses when going into litigation about something that people don't understand.
- Some more I can think of, but this post is getting way out of hand in size. Feel free to comment/suggest your own and I'll add more to the comments.

Credits to: u/nanoissuperior Thanks for your post, it inspired me to write this one. Anyone, any karma you feels needs to go his way, for providing the source of inspiration, please give to O-OP.

TL;DR: Wife, having contributed $0 during entire marriage, waited until I cashed out all my crypto at the top of the bull market in January 2018, for a nice seven-figure amount, and then immediately divorced me for the money.

Edit: added TL;DR
submitted by mijalis to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

About Cyberpunk, Failed states, Political stances and Aesthetics by necessity.

This is gonna be a long post.
Me, as several lovers of the genre usually enter into the debate of "what makes cyberpunk?" More than the obvious statement "high tech - low life".
Much has been said about the evolution of it as a literary - aesthetic genre with advances on the modern world, and if it haves actual relevance on the world as per se instead of a media niche.
Most of it, comes from one of the inherent tropes of cyberpunk: it's a social criticism about the horrors of hypercapitalism (mostly represented by corporations) and how people, immersed in a world where technology is ubiquitous, usually resists against the system. Could be as a collective, or as individuals, but always with a truly selfish and human, objective. Survival of the fittest.
Now that this has been said, I'm gonna tell a story. An scenario that it actually exist, where I live. I'm not gonna spell the name of the country but I'm sure some of you, after reading, are gonna guess it.
Picture a state with big energy reserves, fossil fuels. There are some other riches, like big ore deposits but mostly the resources are energy reserves.
Decades ago, energy crises (for example, the one that crashed the U.S. market in the 70's) caused an economic boom on such state. Middle class improved enormously and consumerism was the order of the day. So much that usually on weekends, there were travels to the U.S., Europe, etc just to buy stuff and come back. Capitalism was the order of the day and the order and stability it brings, but also the increasing breach between the rich and the poor.
Fast-forward several decades, and let happen the fall of the Soviet Union, a pair of coup d' etate attempts, and increased resentment between the social strates.
Now, a new oligarchy has risen along the times, but these aren't your usual corporations, because in fact, the theme of megacorporations running the world as is represented on cyberpunk, it's mostly an 80's view made out of fear of the big companies.
Instead, let this be a political party, made of criminals. People involved on drug trade and general corruption and conscious of the powers of ideology and mass media to exert control.
So they, slowly by appealing to the "punk" part, won support of the people years ago, promising to solve the problems brought by late capitalism, and bringing social equality and help to the lower classes. Made statements about "fighting the system from the inside" and "let's bring power to the common people again"
Instead, they didn't.
Once in power, they started to try to exert control through security forces, monopolization of the media, propaganda and increasing vigilance. Also through control of basic resources and services (food, water, electricity) and appropriation of private enterprises and adding their capital and resources to state-based firms.
As they are more invested in overt control and acts of corruption to add more money to their personal accounts, corruption was made widespread. Corners where cut on maintenance and buying of new equipment on basic enterprises, bogus contracts and projects were made so new infrastructure was bought of first-world salvaged surplus and never made functional, and more other things.
Obviously on a free market economy one enterprise doing this is gonna dissapear between the competence, but on a state-based monopoly this only haves an outcome: economic collapse.
Now, in the current times this state faces the collapse in their various core industries:
Refineries are mostly inoperative so even when it haves enormous energy deposits, there are fuel shortages everywhere. You can expect to be at 10,12 hours or more on a queue to refuel your car.
Curious thing is, fuel prices are still the cheapest in the entire world. So cheap that actually you can just buy a fuel quantity equivalent to a whole tanker at small change, and sell it on a neighbour country and it's basically a perpetual motion money-generating machine. If you have the right contacts on the government and military, obviously, or you aren't gonna past the frontier with that.
To the common man, this also means that you can buy small quantities of fuel and re-sell it outside of the fueling stations at premium prices, so people don't have to wait on a queue. Or if you are on the police or other state-security forces guarding the fuel station (because big crowds are always a risk of revolts) you can sell spots on the queue, or make a VIP line for people with enough money to pay you for it.
The electrical grid is in trouble. Big trouble. Years of mismanagement and cutting corners made blackouts widespread. It started small: one there, another here, until the problem was made obvious and rationing started. Small too: one, two hours a day. Propaganda campaigns were made about "social responsibility" on the use of electricity, and supplements to the actual generating grid were promised. New thermoelectrical plants were projected (because cheap fuel and gas are here, you remember?) And even eolic energy, to appeal to the ecology-based sectors of society.
Only that none of this was actually put into motion and most of the country still depended of a single hydroelectrical facility with lack of maintenance until one day, it failed beyond expected and caused a massive blackout. Of several days in a row, in fact.
Now the energy rationing it's made daily to because there are a massive shortage of available power vs demand. Expect between 6 to 12 hours daily without electrical service.
Obviously, if you have the right contacts, your entire neighbourhood can raise the money and pay someone inside the state-based electrical company and manage to keep the lights running on your sector, at expense of a prolonged blackouts on another. Basic conservation of energy law in action here, folks.
Or you can just buy a small single-cylinder generator to provide yourself energy to turn on the essentials, like your fridge, maybe a fan if you're in a warm-climate zone, and your computer if you use it to work at home. Remember that you have to do a queue or pay overpriced fuel.
Media access, even when ubiquitous actually, it's spotty at best.
Obviously TV is gonna have a lot of State-owned channels so expect a lot of propaganda if you don't have cable or satellite TV. even with it, your cable company maybe would be ordered to bring down the signal of a particular international channel if it speaks trouble and contradicts the actual narrative.
Theoretically, internet is cheap and everyone have access easily. But land-based services (DSL, etc) have a seriously lack of bandwidth and decaying infrastructure made them spotty at best. Expect mostly 1mbps and this is where it works. So people turn to cellphone connections through LTE and the like.
As telecommunication charge rates are restricted and enforced by law, cellphone providers aren't gonna give you unlimited access and mostly, plans are between 1-2 GB per month and after that, you pay the extra data charges. Not a problem per se but when you practically depend only of your cellphone for internet access rates add up quickly. Take in account that wages are low and hyperinflation has made the national currency almost worthless. Access to hard, international currency (call it Dollars, Nuyen, Gil, however you want) is restricted so basically you have buy that currency on the black market. But everyone sells and buys so you only have to keep track of the daily exchange rate. Anyways, less and less people give prices on national currency anymore because of the hyperinflation.
So basically, how it's a current day if you want to make actual money? Obviously the most profitable option is being a freelance if your career allows it, but:
Remember there's power outages everywhere, so you have two options: keep on the move, going to places where there are electricity at the moment, or buy yourself a small power generator to keep your computer on no matters if you are actually powered by the grid or not. Remember to keep fuel at hand and that brings his own share of problems.
If you need internet access (you surely have, for sending-receiving files from your clients, communicating with your relatives and acquitances and keep yourself informed by means of social media) you have to rely on your cellphone, so basically your laptop and mobile device are gonna have a lot of time together.
Your workstation (if you aren't just gonna roll with limiting yourself and modifying your sleep pattern to work only on the hours you have electricity) it's gonna be: your laptop, connected to your cellphone via wireless or USB, and all of this connected to a single-cylinder gas generator to keep it on while the grid comes again on your zone. If you have enough money, you can manage to buy computer equipment "imported" by individuals (don't expect apple stores and the like here) or salvage what u can from yourself, people selling because living country, etc. You can build yourself a nice rig but don't expect prettiness. If your laptop's screen is busted, usually you run with an external monitor and you salvage all the hard drives you can from your old computers with all the adapters or cables you can keep at hand. But you already like the aesthetics, right?
I could go on and on and on, but I'll just gonna make a point here.
Technology is everywhere nowadays but don't necessarily brings quality of life if the infrastructure and social standings are collapsing, so the "high tech, low life" tripe is real. Very real.
Cyberpunk puts a lot of pressure on corporations and late capitalism, but truth is you don't necessarily need a megacorporations to make things run south. You could do it with a government that whichever ideology it shows to the rest of the world, promoves anarchy as a means of control. In fact could be more fiendish to blame capitalism on collapse while you steal all you can while bringing "social justice and equality".
People are gonna do whichever it can to survive. Smuggling of basic products (food, medicines) into the country for personal use or commerce because there's no internal production. Micro-trafficking of fuel to earn more money than actual work does. Cutting electrical or telephone cables to sell the copper inside no matter if you let an entire block off the grid for a week.
If you manage to work with overseas clients, you'll have to make yourself a framework to convert your PayPal-Bitcoin-Foreign bank account to actual money here because exchange houses are out of the question and even when you can pay upfront with Dollars in cash, money transfers, debit card transactions and the like have to be in national currency. In fact, as there are shortages of national-currency cash, people actually buys and sells it for people who needs it.
So, in final. Even as the cyberpunk genre has evolved and in the first world right now the stories are gonna be more in check with what has been shown in, for example, Black mirror (or the evolution of William Gibson stories from the typical 80's themes of Neuromancer to the other side of the spectrum on Pattern Recognition, for naming one of his later works) there are undeveloped parts of the world where the core themes of cyberpunk are very alive, or growing, because technology keeps advancing at a global level, but society not.
If y'all read this, thanks for taking the time to do so. It was part-critique of the genre, part-catharsis.
submitted by ferlitio to Cyberpunk [link] [comments]

Depressed about future prospects

Long story short, my dad suffered a major stroke 2 years ago which left him bedridden in a nursing home and I rage quit my job 1 year ago. My father lost all his asset gambling in his younger days so he had no asset to his name and I have been living with his two sisters (unmarried, my aunts). Normally I should not have to worried about this, but it turns out my Dad only had $2 in his bank account after gambling the CPF he withdrew at our world class casino. He didn't have much insurance because he cancelled them to save on premiums. For what he had, Aviva denied his claim because they claim he false declared his health status on application (many years ago) and will thus "eat" his premium and terminate the policy. The only thing I managed to claim successfully was the DPS and Eldershield thanks to NTUC, but it was after a lengthy one year process to obtain all the "funny" documents they needed. Apparently taking care of a mentally incapacitated person is harder than taking care of a dead person, thanks to red tapes everywhere. You don't just walk and say, I am the son and expect everything to fall into place. There is no one unified system at all.
Nonetheless, there was a whole lot of drama in the first year of his stroke due to the hospital, social workers and incapable relatives that requires me to attend to every single thing like I own the company, and I can take time off anytime I want to be a good son like on television. Eventually I was so burn out that everything finally forced me to rage quit my job after a falling out with management. Stuck in a contract was horrible enough but they were so eager to take advantage of the fact that I needed the job and money, instead of negotiating properly. I also dropped out of private uni because I needed cash flow to pay for all of my father's bills and that Kaplan was insensitive to my predicament by not allowing partial refund of my paid fees. Instead asking me to pay the full amount again when I am ready to re-module. I didn't take that well, so I did not extend the deferment. Let's not say I did not try to get my degree, ok? My dad rather gamble than fund my studies and when I finally saved enough for further studies, I need to pay for his medical needs. I was screwed over hard, and ultimately no money means no paper degree no matter how talented I may be. I even tried to negotiate with the company to send me for training on company time, but its always no training budget for contract staffs. And then the usual, if you go training on company time, then what we hire you for? During my years in the company, never once was I send for training. When there is a new project, they just hire someone to implement it instead of giving me the opportunity. And when its implemented, I get a few power point slides and magically I'm qualified to support the new system. It really is vomit blood.
Although I was jobless for a year, the nice thing was that I was able to get everything settled personally like the good son I should be. Or at least, I thought it should be. But it turns out that putting him in a nursing home does not entirely resolve me of my problem. He has so many medical appointments that requires me to follow up, and if I don't attend, there are funny cases where medication is missing or not collected from the hospital. Or the appointment rescheduled to another time so I can attend. I don't really know whose fault this is since the excuse I keep hearing is that "Sorry, I don't speak English so I cannot understand", so I need to be the one to take care of everything, because once again... I am the son. This keeps taking up my time and I cannot rid myself of them, so this becomes a problem when I want to find a new job. My education level is only up to Diploma and that limits my options. The roles I quality for are pretty much IT Helpdesk / Technicians which don't really have a work life balance option due to over-outsourcing. Pay wise, they are only around $2.6k and it is pretty much a dead end career, so there is no progression path. Having to pay for my father's needs and eventually his 2 sisters as they get older, with this salary really puts me at a lost.
I have a D7 in O'lv math and that is what really screw me over big time but unless I am really that bad at math, I absolutely do not see how I can start a family (If I even have that option) and take care of everyone with a low salary. The reason I need to take care of his 2 sisters is that they took care of me when my father didn't and they took out their savings to pay off my father's gambling debts, which he didn't even brother returning to them when he withdrew his CPF. Even now, when I am not working, for some strange reasons the government's means testing suggest that I can afford to pay $1200++ a month for my father's nursing home and this is excluding all his other medicines and specialist appointments. He has over 20+ medications and among them are anti depressive pills which I don't even have the luxury of taking. As much as I can, I have tried to make ends mean but at some point in time... there is only so much one can do. Social workers I spoke to are like, well live for yourself, not for others. Find a girlfriend! But i look at my situation and I don't exactly see how I even have the luxury to live for myself. If anything, I don't know of any girl in Singapore that would even consider my position as potential boyfriend material. The truth is, I have been fighting by myself for the last 30 years without anyone to seek advise from. Friends? Let's just say, its different from television. Everyone has their own problem and their broken fingernail is more important. The best you can get out of anyone is pretty much, a listening ear on whatsapp and some "You can do it! You should come to church and donate for Jesus's blessing."
I don't blame anyone though and this really issn't a rant post. I appreciate everyone that has been in my life, whether good or bad (everything is a learning experience) but ultimately, there is only so much you can beat out of a dead horse. After considering all possible options, I truly believe that ending my life and letting the government take care of my family's needs might be the best logical choice. Alternatively, I can rob the bank and get myself caught intentionally so I can get some free re-skilling opportunities in jail. Maybe when I come out, I can become some story teller with a very dramatic bestseller book to fund my retirement. To be honest, I don't know what I am expecting from this post, but this is in a way my attempt at screaming for help. Whether I deserve help or how much help I truly deserve, I don't know. Counselors always tell stories where family of 4 struggle with a household income of $2k, and they live a very happy, satisfied life so I will be just fine if I try. But how true is this story really? The bright side is that maybe the hubby can have sex with his wife to destress, but I can't fuck anyone in my family to destress. Maybe the 2 kids will grow up and help to support the family, but my situation aren't even that. I honestly feel that, I have reached the end of the crossroad and this is the end of my bloodline. I don't do drugs, I don't drink, I don't smoke, I don't go pub/club, I haven never even gone on overseas vacation, never took a plane before, I save whatever I can. I don't even go to cinemas. I'm not even fat, I eat a very cheap diet that puts me a little underweight but where did this effort ultimately took me? A boring person with an unattractive lifestyle that no Singaporean girls will want to date, and a aging family to take care of. Honestly, where is my future? I don't see any. To be honest, I may not have the budget to spurge on dates even if a girl want me. Singapore is just very plain straight forward. "Bo money ah? Die lor. I only got one life, you want? Come take it la."
Its a pretty long post, much longer than I expected and I thank you if you have read everything. In a way, I felt better after getting this out. If you are responding though, I have a question. If you were in my position, what would you have done? Would suicide really not be the most educated option?
PS: Pls don't suggest investing in cryptocurrencies. I deleted my bitcoin and doge wallet in 2010.
Big Edit: So there are alot of comments way more than I expected and I appreciate all support. I'm not really that responsible a person like some of you think. It is just that, I try to be a good samaritan and so I pick up the slack here and there, and somehow eventually things became so dependent on me that whose else is going to do it, if not me? I'm forced into where I am today not because I want to. I have actually very much considered disavowing my father and then migrating and abandoning everyone for the greater good. If Singapore was bigger, I would most certainly not hesitate to move to another city. Its just that my whole plan was pretty much, once I settled everything. I would kill myself so in a way that was the master plan. I rage quit my job because I knew I didn't need to put up with shit anymore if I am going to die soon. But things wouldn't settle, and it dragged so long to the point where one day I suddenly feel so lonely that I say, maybe I need to do something, walk out of this darkness and attempt to go back to society. But then I have no real plan for it, or maybe I have but I dunno if its a good plan, a bad plan or another disastrous mistake just waiting to happen.
There's alot of suggestions in here and I thank you very much. Its true that if I don't suicide, there can be many options out and some of these options involves ignoring the future ahead and then praying that things will work out eventually. That once I get a job, everything will be better. But the real problem here is, and what I can't solve in my head is which I will elaborate further is that instead of saving money every month, all the money goes into my Dad's nursing home and medical bills. Now my aunts don't make much, so its hard for them to chip in much when they also have their own medical issues. So the bulk falls on me but still we get by. Just that nobody saves any money at the end of each month, and pray that the existing savings don't get touched. Why? Because my aunt will need those money themselves when they grow older and retire. So this puts things in a very weird cycle, especially given how I have achieved nothing in life thus far. So I pay, we pay until my Dad dies and he dies a happy man, well cared for and everyone think I am such a good son. Then my aunts turn come and oh because I was so capable of handling things before, people's expectation would be that "oh, i'm sure he can do it again". So yup, let's do it again. Then eventually everyone dies, leaving me alone without any savings, career or well... let's not say family. I don't want to make this into a sobbing story of "I cannot find a girlfriend because I have no money!!". So well, what do I do? I assume I would be in my late 60s or early 70s by then and I don't expect my health to be 100% perfect so... I die to join everyone in the afterlife.
I feel very sad when I think it that way, but I need not be that sad because things haven't played out yet. That's what many are telling me. But I dunno how to ignore something that will eventually happen anyway. Thus, it is just a simple matter of whether I die now in my 30s or i die later in my 70s. Either way, I die as a failure. But its not "right" to tell say "Yes Gram, pls go and kill yourself. I fully support your decision." so they say, don't worry. Things will work out. But how will things work out? I ask them, they dunno. I ask myself, I dunno. So... what then? It seems like just delaying the inevitable to me.
If I disavow everyone, np. I just restart my life plain and simple, reach 35 buy my own house and throw a house warming party, impregnate my neighbour's daughter by mistake and I start my own family chapter. And I die in my 70s as a successful husband, good father and someone to be "proud" of. But do I need to start my own family? Not really. Do I need a girlfriend? Not really. Do I need sex? Not really. They are all luxury, not a necessity. So I choose to sacrifice myself, but then I feel suicidal and ya the cycle begins again. I'm not a dumb person and by no means have I not considered the possibilities. But what I have considered may not be big enough, since there are options that I am unaware of or misunderstood and that it aren't as bad as I painted it. Ok, I am open to explore it but if the advise is just "Get a job Gram, that's your first step and then start saving!". That is a pointless advice imo, no matter how reasonable it is because it just puts me back to square one. I am not trying to sound unappreciative btw, I am just frustrated at being looked upon like an idiot.
Edit 2: Based on the comments, I realized that from my friends' perspective, I am the dead weight so that might be why they aren't "helping", just act like things will resolve by itself. Well, I can afford to disavow these friends. Thanks for helping me to realize this!
Edit 3: Going through all the suggestions and private messages, I am suddenly feeling very overwhelmed by what needs to be done and what I should be doing. My head hurts really bad and I am starting to regret asking for help when I am not ready to be helped. It is all reminding me what I should have or should not done for a better life, and why I wanted to commit suicide in the first place. Now I remember why I concluded it was easier to simply restart a new life and make sure I do it correctly the next time. Sorry guys, I don't think I can do it anymore. I think things just got worse after asking for help.
submitted by GramTooNoob to singapore [link] [comments]

Vendor = Billmaker

Article: https://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-pol-dark-web-counterfeiter-20190201-story.html
The dark web puts a new twist on the age-old practice of counterfeiting
When Secret Service Agent Matthew Britsch began trawling for major counterfeiters in the shadowy marketplaces of the dark web, he acted like any smart consumer on eBay — he studied the reviews.
Britsch knew he had struck gold when he found Billmaker, the online moniker of an anonymous counterfeiter who promised a high-quality $100 bill and a money-back guarantee. He even had a loyal fan base who praised his work and customer service with scores of positive reviews.
"Very good quality and got here quick,” one gushed.
"All passed with no issue whatsoever,” another wrote, approvingly. "FRESH CLEAN BILLS!" agreed a third.
“Billmaker was a five-star guy,” said Britsch. “He wanted those five-star reviews to help him sell more bills. That was clearly his goal.”
The agent clicked “buy” and in September 2017 purchased four fake $100 bills for $120 in bitcoin, the online cryptocurrency. The counterfeits arrived on time and were as good as promised.
An analysis by Secret Service experts linked the fraudulent bills to thousands of others that had been passed with a total face value of $4.1 million. That made Billmaker the nation’s most prolific domestic counterfeiter.
Britsch’s buy sparked a nine-month investigation into the murkiest corners of the dark web, where cyber-savvy criminals use online bazaars to anonymously buy and sell goods ranging from firearms and illegal drugs to fake identification and stolen cars.
“It’s all there for sale,” said Glen M. Kessler, the special agent in charge of the Secret Service’s five-agent Savannah office. “Right in the open. But while it provides anonymity to criminals, it also provides anonymity to law enforcement. They can’t tell who they are selling to. And so we went fishing.”
The Secret Service, best known for protecting presidents, was formed in 1865 to fight an epidemic of counterfeiting that was strangling the U.S. economy.
Today counterfeit U.S. bills are only a tiny fraction of currency in circulation. Even so, the Secret Service made more than 1,580 counterfeiting-related arrests last fiscal year, seizing $204 million in phony bills. Banks and retailers collected an additional $107 million.
Once dominated by artisans who minted carefully forged greenbacks on large offset presses, domestic counterfeiters now typically rely on computers, scanners and laser printers. And some use the dark web to sell their high-quality fakes online.
The dark web’s backbone is a system called the Onion Router, known as Tor, a network of software and online connections that mask those who use it. Tor has attracted both criminal and legitimate users — political dissidents overseas, for example — seeking to avoid government surveillance.
In 2017, Kessler turned an office supply room into a hub for dark web counterfeit investigations. He had two rules: Targets had to be real players — “Not your guy printing $2,000 off on an inkjet at home,” Kessler said — and live in the United States.
“We thought it would be too difficult to catch the ones operating in South America or overseas,” he said.
Agents used the customer reviews as a guide and quickly came across Billmaker. In addition to the bitcoin-backed guarantee, Billmaker offered free tracking of his packages through the U.S. mail.
That was a mistake. Secret Service agents were able to track Billmaker’s shipment to Britsch from the Oklahoma City area, a crucial starting clue.
They were impressed when the red-and-blue envelope arrived. The fakes — reproductions of $100 bills phased out in 2013 in favor of a harder-to-fake currency had been printed on high-quality laser printers and specialty paper. The bogus Benjamins had a decent fake security strip. They even felt real.
Within a month, thanks to analysis by Secret Service experts in Washington, the agents knew they were chasing Daniel Johnson, a notorious counterfeiter who had been printing and passing fake bills since at least 2015. His last known address was near Oklahoma City.
Johnson, 34, was also considered dangerous. He was a firearms enthusiast and a member of the “prepper” movement, activists who stockpile food, ammunition and other supplies because they believe a nuclear war or other catastrophe is likely to occur.
Johnson had served three years in federal prison for selling pirated copies of Microsoft Office. But he was arrested again in February 2016 on counterfeiting charges.
Released on bond, he turned down a plea deal offer and vanished. In February 2017, a federal grand jury indicted him on charges of counterfeiting and growing marijuana.
Johnson was so angry at the justice system that his lawyer, M. Michael Arnett, worried he might resort to violence if arrested. Arnett said he consulted legal ethics experts before he passed a warning to federal prosecutors.
“I was concerned he was not going to be taken alive if officers tried to arrest him, and that toll would be higher if they were not forewarned,” Arnett said.
With that danger in mind, agents in Savannah returned to the dark web in October 2017 to buy more counterfeit bills. But the marketplace had disappeared. Billmaker’s online trail went cold.
Marissa Elliott, a university student and bartender in Norman, Okla., met Johnson when he took a seat at her bar in June 2017 and she caught his “big blue eyes” lingering on her.
Tall and muscular, he was also quiet and reserved. He didn’t even offer his name. But the bartender checked his driver’s license before serving him a beer and saw he was Ross Moore, 36, from Florida.
It was the first of many lies.
They soon started dating. They celebrated his fake birthday that July and moved in February 2018 into a converted shed in Noble, about 30 miles south of Oklahoma City. The tiny house was hidden in dense woods.
A talented artist, Johnson rendered hand-drawn portraits of relatives and friends. He initially said he worked in information technology and had attended college, majoring in psychology. Elliott found a Harvard diploma and ID card in a drawer; she didn’t know they were fakes.
Johnson never used credit cards or wrote checks. He explained to Elliott that he relied on cash because he was an investor in a marijuana business that was prohibited from using banks.
He told her he had been divorced, which was true, and that a screen-saver photo of a young girl on his computer was of his niece, which was false. It was his daughter.
As the months passed, Johnson suffered frequent nightmares and spent time on strange conspiracy websites. Elliott believed his stress stemmed from secret work he claimed he had done for the government.
“He told me he had seen horrible things,” she said.
When they drove to a cabin where he was preparing for the demise of society, he insisted she put her cellphone in a Faraday bag, a shielded satchel that blocks electronic signals, so they couldn’t be tracked.
In the late spring of 2018, he bought tickets so Elliott and her mother could take a bucket-list vacation in Thailand. They spoke daily by phone. But one morning in May, he seemed distant and distracted.
“It was like he was in a rush to get someplace,” she said.
The Secret Service was closing in.
After falling off the map, Billmaker suddenly had popped up on other dark web marketplaces. In January 2018, agents bought four fake $100 bills from him. They did it again in April.
Working with agents in Oklahoma City, the Savannah squad narrowed its hunt to around Norman, about 20 miles away.
U.S. postal inspectors studied Johnson’s tracking numbers and examined dozens of bags of mail. They discovered he had mailed his packages from blue post boxes across the parking lot from the Norman Police Department.
After several weeks of surveillance, federal agents determined Johnson was driving a black Ford F-250 pickup. It was registered to Ross Moore of Florida, a real person who had reported his identity had been stolen.
Johnson had bought the truck for $58,000 in cash.
Agents traced him to an apartment in Norman, where he probably collected mail and supplies; a house in the Oklahoma City suburb of Yukon, which was his main counterfeiting plant; and his secluded home in Noble.
As he drove out of his gravel driveway in Noble on May 17, 2018, a 10-car convoy of federal and local law enforcement officials led by the U.S. Marshals Service closed in, sirens blaring.
Johnson swerved to the shoulder, hopped out and began firing an AR-15 rifle. A gun battle raged for nearly a minute before Johnson was killed. No agents were injured.
Searching the house in Yukon, agents found about $300,000 in fake $100 bills, lined up and hanging to dry in neat rows.
Agents also seized several computers protected by encryption, which the Secret Service has not been able to crack.
“There are so many questions I would have liked to ask him,” said Wesley Gillespie, a Secret Service agent who chased Johnson for a year. “How did he learn to make these so well? Who taught him? Where is the bitcoin?”
Investigators may have a clue. When they searched Johnson’s body, they found a computer thumb drive jammed in an ankle holster. The device contained 50 screen grabs of text messages.
Agents suspect it is a digital key to unlock a bitcoin or computer vault. Even so, they concede they may never crack the counterfeiter’s dark web of secrets.
submitted by DrinkMoreCodeMore to DNMBusts [link] [comments]

Three potential catalysts

Introduction and disclaimer

Everyone else does a bit of pontificating on here, so I'm going to have my turn! Please feel free to correct me if I have made any mistakes. And, of course, do challenge the ideas if you think I'm wrong. I hope these thoughts can spark some friendly debate.

Three Catalysts?

Browse this sub and if you can get past the endless shitposts about 'lambos' and 'the mooooon' and 'should I buy now?' and 'how high can it go?' and 'what does market cap mean?' and 'what's the easiest way to buy XRP using Tuvaluan dollars?' and 'can somebody help me to tie my shoelaces?' and so on, you will start to see posts about three possible near-term catalysts.

1. SWELL

Ripple Labs is holding a big conference (called SWELL) in October. It is taking place on the same days and in the same city as Swift's SIBOS conference. The keynote speakers at SWELL will be:

2. THE LOCKUP

Ripple Labs holds about 62 billion XRP. The company has pledged to put 55 billion XRP into a cryptographically secured escrow account. The account will hold 55 contracts of 1 billion XRP each, with one contract expiring on the first day of every month from months 0 to 54. As each contract expires, the 1 billion XRP will become available for Ripple to 'use' (which likely means sell to financial institutions). Whatever is not used at the end of each month will be put back into escrow and become available to Ripple 54 months later.

3. XRP ADOPTION

Ripple sells software that helps banks to lower costs related to overseas remittances. Ripple is working with over 90 banks globally, some 30 pilots have been run, and more than 10 banks are moving into commercial use. Ripple also sells XRP. This asset is intended to be used as a 'bridge currency' in conjunction with the Ripple software. Banks who use it can practically double their cost savings. As far as we know, banks are not using it in any great volume yet.

Why does XRP's price fluctuate?

Well, why does any cryptocurrency's price fluctuate? Two reasons: speculation and demand.

What about these catalysts, then?

So what impact will the abovementioned (potential) catalysts have on the price of XRP?

SWELL

A lot of folks on here are very excited about SWELL. And I can't really blame them. The conference looks awesome. If you haven't checked out the agenda, you really should. It looks like a top-notch event. But what does it mean for the price of XRP? Well, it might cause a short-term spike if the day traders get as excited about this as the true-believers are. But once that price spikes, you can expect these guys to take profit and the price to correct accordingly. All the way? 50% retreat? I couldn't tell you. Which is why I'm no day trader. SWELL might also get some investors excited. People new to the crypto space will hear about XRP for the first time and their imaginations might be fired the same way ours have been. This could give the price a sustainable boost. "To the moon?" you ask. Don't ask. It's a stupid question and you're stupid for asking, ya stupid-face. "But CuriousZerper, I heard Ripple may use the conference to announce that SBI is going live with XRP!" I've read this, too, but it doesn't make much sense. Tech companies don't use conferences to announce that they have new customers or that they their customers are using their products. They use conferences to showcase their products, to generate publicity, and to win new customers. I'm not saying some kind of SBI-related announcement is out of the question, I'm just saying it seems unlikely to me.

THE LOCKUP

Ripple holds the lion's share of XRP. The company uses it to incentivize market makers. There is a fear among people who "regurgitate FUD" (hat-tip to sjoelkatz for the phraseology!) that Ripple Labs might just dump this onto the market to make a quick buck. This is known as overhang risk. But dumping XRP would be suicidal for Ripple. The company's surest way to vast profits is to do everything in its power to make XRP the global currency of choice. At that time, every single zerp it owns will be worth that much more. So what does the lockup mean for the price of XRP? Well, materially, the lockup doesn't really do anything to impact supply. Ripple Labs in May said that it "has sold on average 300 million XRP per month for the past 18 months." So when the escrow takes place and Ripple has 1 billion XRP available for sale every month, this is still FAR MORE than it is currently selling. The escrow serves one purpose: to instill confidence. It will not limit supply, but it may convince some who are on the fence to get off that fence and jump into the pool. (The water's great; come on in!)

XRP ADOPTION

I'll cut to the chase: this is where my hopes lie. The true, long-term, sustainable appreciation in the price XRP will come when the demand is there. Not demand from individuals who have a couple of grand to throw at the coin, but demand from financial institutions (and perhaps non-financial firms, too) who want to hold $50m worth, $200m worth, perhaps even $1b worth. If there are only 100b XRP in existence (and slightly less given that some portion is destroyed with every transaction), each token needs to be worth a hell of a lot more than $0.20 if hundreds or thousands of banks and companies want to transact with it.

Conclusion

So, each of these three potential catalysts might do something for the price, but it is XRP ADOPTION that will have the long-lasting impact. And the stupidity of phrases like "rockets to the moon" overlooks that the adoption may just take place gradually. To borrow the lexical idiocy I have been railing against, the rocket may be halfway to the moon before anybody realizes it has blasted off!
tl;dr SWELL and the escrow may each create a little momentum, but the key to any meaningful appreciation is the widespread adoption of XRP by corporate actors.
submitted by CuriousZerper to Ripple [link] [comments]

My [M/32] younger brother [M/22] passed away 5 years ago and his ex-roommate stole his bitcoins afterwards

Edit: Thanks for the advice so far, particularly the suggestion to post about this to /bitcoin for help. I will be driving down to my parents this weekend to check the computer for the bitcoin information to investigate this further. This community is amazing, I will continue to post updates as they happen.
My younger brother passed away nearly five years ago from an overdose which devastated my family at the time. I knew he was into drugs and continually warned him about it but he assured me he had it under control. I couldn't really take the high moral ground anyhow since he knew I had also indulged in it myself in my younger days, though that wasn't exactly a secret in my family. I was posted overseas when it happened and felt some guilt that if I hadn't been away I would have been able to prevent him being influenced by his circle of friends at the time but ultimately I realised I was not my brother's keeper. Afterwards I assisted my parents with putting his belongings into storage to be sorted out at a later date and returned to my job.
When my contract ended I returned home and had the time to sort through some of my brother's things that my parents hadn't looked at yet. Among them was his computer which I was hoping might have had some photos or other things of interest on it. I managed to salvage a few good pictures and video, though most of it was of him hanging out with his friends at the time. It will still good to have a few extra memories of him from back then. It was while I was going through the installed programs I noticed he had bitcoin software installed. I know he used it to buy "certain things" for himself and his friends online so it wasn't a surprise to me that he had this. I knew that bitcoin had gone up in value over the past several years so part of me hoped he might have had an amount there but when I ran the bitcoin program it said zero balance.
I wasn't too surprised at that until I looked at the transaction details - there was regular activity there right up until the week before he passed away and then nothing after that… until 2 years ago when the total balance at the time of 147 bitcoins was transferred out of it. This made no sense to me, unless someone else had a copy of his account or had hacked them from him somehow. But then I checked the history log on the computer and lo and behold it had been started up several times on the date the transfer happened.
Going back to my parents I asked them if anyone else had used the computer since they got it back from storage. They remembered that yes, two years ago my brother's old roommate looked them up and asked if they still had his computer and could he use it to get a copy of some files to do with their old rental. They had let him use it for a couple of hours and he left afterwards and hadn't heard from him since. I looked him up on social media and from his post history it seems like he suddenly came into some serious money judging from the purchases and activities he was involved with at around the same time.
So where do I go from here? The evidence strongly points to his having stolen the bitcoins but what are my options? Do I confront him directly and do I have anything to stand on? My parents went through a lot over the years and it would be good if I could at least give them back something for all their blood, sweat and tears.
And I know it's what my brother would have wanted.
tl;dr: Younger brother passes away leaving a secret bitcoin stash behind. Ex-roommate tricks my parents into giving him access to his computer before anyone can find it and steals them.
submitted by justicecrewcut to relationships [link] [comments]

Three catalysts for XRP?

Introduction and disclaimer

Hello cryptophiles! I posted essentially the same thing on the /ripple subreddit yesteday and someone suggested you ladies and gents might like to read it, too. Sorry if you've already seen this.
The following ideas are mine. They are the synthesis of lots and lots of reading over the past 5 months or so. Please feel free to correct me if I have made any mistakes. And, of course, do challenge the ideas if you think I'm wrong.

Three Catalysts?

Browse the /ripple sub and if you can get past the endless shitposts about 'lambos' and 'the mooooon' and 'should I buy now?' and 'how high can it go?' and 'what does market cap mean?' and 'what's the easiest way to buy XRP using Tuvaluan dollars?' and 'can somebody help me to tie my shoelaces?' and so on, you will start to see posts about three possible near-term catalysts.

1. SWELL

Ripple Labs is holding a big conference (called SWELL) in October. It is taking place on the same days and in the same city as Swift's SIBOS conference. The keynote speakers at SWELL will be:
  • 1) Dr Ben Bernanke, former chairman of the Federal Reserve; and
  • 2) Sir Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web.

2. THE LOCKUP

Ripple Labs holds about 62 billion XRP. The company has pledged to put 55 billion XRP into a cryptographically secured escrow account. The account will hold 55 contracts of 1 billion XRP each, with one contract expiring on the first day of every month from months 0 to 54. As each contract expires, the 1 billion XRP will become available for Ripple to 'use' (which likely means sell to financial institutions). Whatever is not used at the end of each month will be put back into escrow and become available to Ripple 54 months later.

3. XRP ADOPTION

Ripple sells software that helps banks to lower costs related to overseas remittances. Ripple is working with over 90 banks globally, some 30 pilots have been run, and more than 10 banks are moving into commercial use. Ripple also sells XRP. This asset is intended to be used as a 'bridge currency' in conjunction with the Ripple software. Banks who use it can practically double their cost savings. As far as we know, banks are not using it in any great volume yet.

Why does XRP's price fluctuate?

Well, why does any cryptocurrency's price fluctuate? Two reasons: speculation and demand.
  • Speculation: Traders like to guess which way the price is going to head and they buy and sell the currency to try to make short-term trading gains. Investors are trying something similar, albeit from a longer-term perspective. They think the price will rise over the long term, so they buy the asset. This very process of buying and selling is what causes the price to move.
  • Demand: Believe it or not, but some people actually use cryptocurrencies! Some drug dealers use Monero to make untraceable payments. Some people pay for goods and services with Bitcoin. Some financial institutions use XRP for overseas remittances. Hell, I use XRP to send money to family members who are overseas.

What about these catalysts, then?

So what impact will the abovementioned (potential) catalysts have on the price of XRP?

SWELL

A lot of folks over at /ripple are very excited about SWELL. And I can't really blame them. The conference looks awesome. If you haven't checked out the agenda, you really should. It looks like a top-notch event. But what does it mean for the price of XRP? Well, it might cause a short-term spike if the day traders get as excited about this as the true-believers are. But once that price spikes, you can expect these guys to take profit and the price to correct accordingly. All the way? A 50% retreat? I couldn't tell you. Which is why I'm no day trader. SWELL might also get some investors excited. People new to the crypto space will hear about XRP for the first time and their imaginations might be fired the same way ours have been. This could give the price a sustainable boost. "To the moon?" you ask. Don't ask. It's a stupid question and you're stupid for asking, ya stupid-face. "But CuriousZerper, I heard Ripple may use the conference to announce that SBI is going live with XRP!" I've read this, too, but it doesn't make much sense. Tech companies don't use conferences to announce that they have new customers or that they their customers are using their products. They use conferences to showcase their products, to generate publicity, and to win new customers. I'm not saying some kind of SBI-related announcement is out of the question, I'm just saying it seems unlikely to me.

THE LOCKUP

Ripple holds the lion's share of XRP. The company uses it to incentivize market makers. There is a fear among people who "regurgitate FUD" that Ripple Labs might just dump this onto the market to make a quick buck. This is known as overhang risk. But dumping XRP would be suicidal for Ripple. The company's surest way to vast profits is to do everything in its power to make XRP the global currency of choice. At that time, every single zerp it owns will be worth that much more. So what does the lockup mean for the price of XRP? Well, materially, the lockup doesn't really do anything to impact supply. Ripple Labs in May said that it "has sold on average 300 million XRP per month for the past 18 months." So when the escrow takes place and Ripple has 1 billion XRP available for sale every month, this is still FAR MORE than it is currently selling. The escrow serves one purpose: to instill confidence. It will not limit supply, but it may convince some who are on the fence to get off that fence and jump into the pool. (The water's great; come on in!)

XRP ADOPTION

I'll cut to the chase: this is where my hopes lie. True, long-term, sustainable appreciation in the price XRP will come when the demand is there. Not demand from individuals who have a couple of grand to throw at the coin, but demand from financial institutions (and perhaps non-financial firms, too) who want to hold $50m worth, $200m worth, perhaps even $1b worth. If there are only 100 billion XRP in existence (and slightly less given that some portion is destroyed with every transaction), each token needs to be worth a hell of a lot more than $0.20 if hundreds or thousands of banks and companies want to transact with it.

Conclusion

So, each of these three potential catalysts might do something for the price, but it is XRP ADOPTION that will have the long-lasting impact. And the stupidity of phrases like "rockets to the moon" overlooks that adoption may just take place gradually. To borrow the lexical idiocy I have been railing against, the rocket may be halfway to the moon before anybody realizes it has blasted off!
tl;dr SWELL and the escrow may each create a little momentum for XRP, but the key to any meaningful appreciation is the widespread adoption of the asset by corporate actors.
submitted by CuriousZerper to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

A cool, and sad, and strange story.

Just that you can please understand me, what it's this about... I would like to know your opinion. What you think, and hopefully, your understanding and analysis of the situation. Will make probably a better scope for the consideration, I'm embarrassed and distressed, because I don't know what, or how to say to my GF, Wife..., Hey, please wake up... I don't know, Really, what you are looking or what do you think. How deep we have to live something that "Is not even merely real with certain indicators, people can observe". Everybody knows how and what they use to keep "morphing reality upon the eyes of everyone". I usually on my breaks, like to write this kind of shit, to later on. days back, I can make certain kind of retrospective, and realize "How fucked I was" or maybe "I am"...
An example, like many... tens... to be honest.
In 2015, one day, beside having a lot of comments, pressure and certain kind of things, I start thinking was a good idea, make something different, at least, start working on something that attracts, to me as a hobbie, as a business, and really a certain area, specifically that attracts my attention since a long time ago, and I'm going to briefly tell you it's background; 1. On mid 90s my dad start with some certain shots that a friend of my mom got on Switzerland, basically where stem cells from Goats. (that's the only thing I knew). So, usually my dad and his friends where customers of my mom's friend named "Mrs. Estelita", a great woman. 3. My dad did this many many years, 4. On 2005, browsing online I found the Dr. Kuhnau work, and who was keeping with that going on. 5. Grab a plane with my dad to meet this Physician, until today he is my personal friend, he gifted me books of Dr. Kuhnau, amazing life work. You can't understand his work, until you realize that he was an "Endocrinologist", upon that you start appreciating everything from the "Correct point of view".
Anyway, I start on, make some targets, beside human beigns, ladies where also dogs, cats and horses. I had several kind of background under that field with all the years and hours of listening Dr. Rosales, really years.. man..., So I design something new, beside the cellular material and certain natural parts that I inherit from Dr. Velasquez, the one that keep the research about, a table. Certain document with the correct information in all the constitution of the different types of dissected tissue of the animal, and what where the specific behavior in certain organ and physiological system, with a lot of text, and hand notes.
No bullshit. I made my own and complete investigation, until the grade of mixing the subtances for promote a hormonal coexistence within the initial delicate and super strong charge as a specific concentrated gland of a exact specie of the animal, in a certain protocol even for separate the cells in the solution, as you know cryogenic processes shorten the rate of healthy and completely alive cells, from 100% to x certain one depending on the conditions, but at least "Still very very good, and competes with all".
Those days we got the meds directly from the house of Mrs. Kuhnau, it's impossible to get that sharks, and Dr. Kuhnau in early 90s, he was sure to have stock "For many many years", so it's the same to kill all or kill none, they already "On the fridge". The cellular charge or this animal beside a Goat, is something out of comparision, the ripeness you feel even relaxing yourself, you feel like a young flexible fucker back again, it's uncomparable the smile you see to your old father.
The best part of all this is how all this story, they "Forgot it completely" suddenly my dad was "selling my work" with the father of the raper, and then this guys, using that story where making their own "Dialogues" to perform many rape and violating situations, that I'm saying because I remembered, but please, don't give more attention to this "Technical Problem", everything will be "Proffesionally and Discretely Solved" "The best I can", there's sometime when you just keep saying; hey man...
please let it go anything that may be forcing you to do this if is in the case of... please man... 2-3 times man, even that I have to task molest during my day, to go to his BAR, and say, to his waiters; "Look I came to look this guy, if he comes back, please tell him, For god sake man, leave this, its a confussion, please, just leave this by peace man..."
They didn't understood, it seemed that the most I tried to be a humane person, they where shitting on my wife, and laughing about my most noble feelings of "Being a good boy" and you know why? Because they and only they, they really know the kind of Lucifer I am.... to resume it all... and the best part of this.... was, how they even keep saying, "They where me"...when absolutely there's no comparison between "An Economical ECEX (Mx Story), a National Political Adventurer, Brave as Tiger, a Hunter and a well-known Sharpshooter, under his Hunting Community, with this fucking "Shit from Oaxaca", Money Laundry Guy, owner of "Giros Negros", BARs, Discotheques, that is full of hunger, shit and ambition as himself,", in resume, a bunch of people that if they get killed tomorrow, "Nobody is going to miss them", believe me...
Well, getting back to "What is worth to hear" to be honest...
And now That I had my own mixture and blend. no matter I knew about Dr. Velasquez's advice properly, on which way to handle on. I start researching everyday and every night. Until came the time of the website development. I had to choices, of course the initial trunk one was using a CMS... I had experience working with Drupal, but I really thought twice, and though.. mmmm well... E-Commerce and for its, easiest homogenization for building a cool community of people that may think the same. I used WooCommerce back then. Because, since you know... perfectly.... like... "Come on who, or what financial institution will give me a Credit Card Gateway, so I can charge to all this folks.... insane... I place in the shoes of the bank representative.... I think even to laugh, when get into the part of "Xenotransplants made out of certain kind of Shark..." it comes the part I hear "The laughing... as Richard Sings...", "Steve, me, Rosales, even Sheldrake at some point in our life's they laugh, so much and so hard", "They even fuck our wives and mistress, thinking that we are Dead... That Mum-Ra is not going to came with the Sword of Leono that was his property...." Just that you can imagine the "Conclusion and In resumed words".
I remember try those days, with my dad even Twice, the main flagship product that was 9 blend, improved, and one of only 3, that specifically used, the hypophysis glang. Was a complete drug man... I felt like "In advance of my significant other". And you know something. Until today this stupids thinks "They help to fuck Dr. Kuhnau, Granpa of Erin" for an example, but they never knew, That the same shit they did, we did also the sacrifice of "Lost" all the mixtures of the stock we had on the warehouse in TX. a complete, "Unique Stock" Dr. Kuhnau in my memories and mind, hopefully I hope he helped to make. Tens of hours, arranging, and reading all this scientific papers, "Something I hope to learn" the only word that I never forget, is "Pelikanniden" something more or less like that. You know why? So this folks they keep thinking. "They will fuck me, my dad, and know even my putative grandpa already dead from long ago"
Until here... please try to reconstruct and imagine, all their force to destroy us, all the smell of Machiavellism, but well, I keep going and moving on, no matter what, working in the project, everyday. Soon finished the render boxes, the colors, grids, layouts, colors, schemes, roles, payment gateway using bitcoins hosting the bitcoin server directly on my Mac Mini Server, everything, precious... all going on with an automated FAX flyer campaign, to a big databse of veterinary clinics, and horse breeders. Because we had a super cool shot for reconstruct horses that where suffering from Tendonosis, and other ligaments and tissue tear, rend, claws on the muscle. So with the appropiate cellular material, and certain "magic powders" this animals heal faster, better and painless. fast. "Shiny and new"
Even in the database suddenly, auditing the same, I saw it contained an phone number that said: "STEVE PLEASED" was his name and last name. I laugh...
Even I manage the code of a plug in in FedEx, that I had to compile with a different code to make it work to rate, perfectly using a combination of measurements of several boxes, with certain amount of what they bought, a very cool IVR, with an amazing friend she sold me the voiceover, many many things, was everything like combining and making "An Awesome Test" like buying your kit for making you "A Raptor" at least.
Even we paid for Horse Communities, Dogs, People, Elder men that wants to keep the Fire burning... If you really get the Genuine cellular material, the correct dissection and mixture with the perfectly combined glands and growth factors... OMG... You will feel in resumed word, "A Superior Man, with a superior silk, touch" You don't watching me at Dojo, One of my best memories. Send people to fuck themselve 2 meters, graciously.
I got all the USA Market, ready, overseas, everything under control, The last thing that really worried me was the Sanitary Authorities, because, we was going to pay taxes, and everything was arranged. Look What we are going to do? Throw away all the stock of Mrs. Kuhnau, just because this people is insane? "The dead animals, dead they are" making prohibitions, wont allow killing or saving more, because "They are already dead..." hundreds, this man had in his house... they still over there...
I remember the Sigil of the logo Dr. Kuhnau last did... an "Amazing Logo" that said "Kuhnau Herb and Hollistic Center" But know... saddly for "Our Specie as Steve". Now this motherfuckers said "That" lived in "Mexico" and that is not true at any mean this motherfuckers nigroes like Obama keep barking my friend.... They had a well and very amazing strategy to perform all this shit... Hopefully "For Humanity" I hope not to get to this conclusions under an investigation, because "I will loose my mind... with all the murdering..." and the best is that "I will loose it.. for good"
Dr. Rosales, always was completely against, he even took the Xenotransplants book, because he told me. Look... Enrique.. I just call "Dr. huhuhuhu from NIH, in Maryland..." he was my proffesor, I was the only one that he invited me to dinner with his wife on his house... early 90s, I was a mexican papachito that dressed like Miami Vice and Drived a Mustang, early 90s.... Oooooohhhh.... and listen Enrique... with some Chick Chack Chook., that Shark blood fluids is "Savage" he said, mine is just "Genomics" You even have to go to make the ridicule to Reno, with that man... "We don't need no one" but "Mr. Money".... hehehehehe we laugh so much, drunk and ting our cups.. cheers my friend...
Never know this nigroes where going to target me that hard... and they blame Erin...
Well... at least look... The Sharkcells.com story its finished.
Then I went interviewing with a father’s of a friend of my childhood. Dr. Agustín. I went to his office. Told him and show him the platform the video. All. Told that what he thought of helping me in Mexico with trauma doctors, physicians, etc. Etc. I told him. “You agree and I send you here a freezer with stock and I configure the website to accept Mexican quick sales”. The guy just keep barking “how fucked was the economy with that governor”
Well I said... anyway. I moved to Mexico City to show a guy that “supposedly was my friend” that Rosales presented me. A guy named Dr. Jesús De Haro. Nothing to do with the crazy guy years before. When the “Buckle” day. They knew man... and presented they didn’t said nothing just things like hey nice to meet you. This and that. 10 min chat.
Anyway. I offered that guy the same. Never replied.
What else can I do? I went for job fair and had none. I worked in a Japanese restaurant for 9-10 hours per day. Step up. Cooking. All day. Since you arrived you have to place the Gohan in the machine.
They paid me $35 USD per week 6 days. And I have to pay the buses to get there
Suddenly they rape us. Why? Because they want to keep blaming Eve for the actions and shit did a guy that owns a oil company who is partner of Ernesto Lara. “We everybody know”. I even have a well documented charge of those things detected. Precisely.
The best of this is hearing the voice of the other side the “Hernan” The financial. “Hernan Tirado” saying things like “it most be a wage of 18 thousand pesos”
Hahahahahahaha people from the world of reality “the little fellow husband of Erin that won the golden ticket for visiting the Chocolate factory, just heard that amount and dreams and laugh about”
“Someday I will be free and the oppressors will be prosecuted by my own. Grandpa. Don’t worry. He said to his own”
Now I believe in the science of my own personal research. I'm happy, I will have soon 3 jobs, same day. 3 of them are of my own initiative, and if things go wrong, I sell all and go to milk some cows, somewhere is a cold ambiance, chilled, cool, that you at least don't get paid "As everybody would like to" but, I will have somewhere maybe even near the wild to sleep, make my coffee in the outdoors, just "I will be very very dead by that time". No matter Dr. Samuel Hannemanian says. I can't leave, Black Coffee, and smoke... it seems like a haunted issue, Erin has to help me out... Who else man?
The idea is that this people knows.... "If you owe me something... you are going to pay me... maybe you owe me so much, that you will pay with all the members of your family, and I will make it something reliable in the future...." I don't know "When you though playing with fire was not going to burn you....." even a kid and a stupid knew that... cheers...
submitted by mariguanodelmal to anything [link] [comments]

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submitted by Misoprostolrxrx to u/Misoprostolrxrx [link] [comments]

Abundance via Cryptocurrencies.

Back in 2011 before I started munching red pills errday, I was looking to loot up. I thought google was the perfect example of clever entrepreneurship and despite the fact I knew jack shit about it, I subbed to programming thinking that most likely something big was going to come out of the computer realm. A couple of months later a little article popped into my feed from there " Google develops new bitcoin wallet ". I had a read of the comments and it was noted that it wasn't google developing the wallet but rather an employee as part of their extra vocational activities. Someone in the comment section mentioned the silk road and I had a little look around trying to find out more about it. I downloaded Tor and found the way to access it and after looking around thought that I'd better give it a crack.
I got my first bitcoin via paypal for <$1 but then paypal cracked down on that channel and because there were no Australian exchanges I had to go some roundabout way of getting myself second life credits and then using an in game exchange for bitcoin. I bought a few more and had a little dabble on SR. It worked and my little sample orders came through. I was super impressed and set about getting more of this magic internet money that had enabled such a cool service. About the same time, it started going through it's first bubble getting as high as $30. It crashed down to $20, then $15, then $10 and at each of those levels I threw a few grand at it that I had sitting in an account from when my granddad died. I was keen to get more but then it started heading lower and I thought "ah I don't actually know shit about this. I think it's a good idea, but this is my first time investing and I could well just end up going out the back door."
They hit $2 a coin but I had no need to sell and just sat on them for a couple of years. Towards the end of 2012, as the first halving of the block reward was approaching, the price started to move again. It got up to around $15 again where I was even, but again I had no need to sell and just sat on them. By April or so they'd gone mental and had reached their then all time high of $270 odd. At the peak they were going up so fast that I went to bed one night and woke up with my stack worth $5k more. I cashed out enough to buy a few oz of gold for my original $4k investment but held the rest.
Throughout this time I'd been consuming all I could about this cool new tech and the associated avenues that had opened up in decentralized/disruptive technologies. I was reading every post in rad_decentralization polycentric_law, seasteading, open source ecology and whatever I could digest to apply to my vision of what I wanted to do with this loot.
A couple of months later I went off on an adventure overseas to go surfing in Mex, some summer festivals and do a snow season in Canada. I was reluctant to spend my coins because they'd now gone down to around $70 or $80 bucks so I'd been going through my savings. After Burning Man I was out of cash. I was supposed to go back to Mexico to hit up the south with some friends but I decided instead to go up to Northern Cali to try find some work on the farms in a town we'd passed through.
I spent my last $200 on a crappy hotel and getting pissed at the bar looking for leads for work. The next day we found a guy who'd give us a start and we headed up to the hills to work for a few months. We had worked for 2 weeks when there was a bit of a hiatus for a few days (which coincided with symbiosis festival), so we went down there to party for a few days.
On the weed farms we'd been hanging with lots of deadhead kids and they'd all been sharing stories of eating heaps of acid and other drugs and I thought it was time I give a big dose a try. I managed to get a hold of some at the festival, tore off 5 tabs and shoved em on my tongue. The guys face kinda dropped and he's like "dude, they're really strong". I had just smoked a masssssive joint and was about halfway through a bottle of captain morgans, so I just kinded "Meh'd" him and laughed. Needless to say, they were indeed quite strong and 6 hrs later I've got some medic knocking on the porta potty asking me if I'm alright. Completely naked, filthy, sticks and leaves and shit all through my beard and hair. I'm like "yeah, i'm ok but do you have my clothes?" She didn't and didn't know where they were but I managed to get a blanket off her and walked outside into the party. At that exact moment my friends happened to be walking past first aid and I heard one of their voices through the darkness. I yelled out to him and the others and they came over and took me with them.
I went back to camp a bit bummed out that i'd gone too hard and ruined the party, but then I could hear the music pumping and actually felt pretty good so I went back out to look for my clothes and shit. I couldn't find them until the next day my jeans turned up in lost and found with my wallet in them. I rolled out of that party that next evening, pretty rattled, no shoes and totally broke again.
Not long after I got back to the farms I heard of the silk road bust and noticed bitcoin had taken another hit. However, in the following days, perhaps due to the shutting down of an unsavoury aspect of the bitcoin ecosystem, the coins went on a surge. By the time I was up in Canada for my working holiday snow season they'd gone as high as $1250 a coin. I cashed a few out to sort myself out for the season. Didn't bother finding a job, bought a pound of weed and just boarded every day.
Through this time, I'd spread a bunch of my stack over some shares denominated in bitcoin and some of those were generating me nice dividends. One in particular which was in a company making mining hardware was doing really well and I put a lot of my coins in there. They took a hit after restructuring their business model to redirect dividends into R&D, which made the price plummet. I doubled down on them but eventually they ended up going out the back door. I lost another 10btc or so to a scam run out of Cyprus that was supposed to be a btc-euro gateway company, but he bailed once the btc price dropped. A few others crashed along the way and then in the mean time I'd spent most of my liquid coins on going back to Oz to visit my girlfriend, returning to canada, then returning back to Oz once that relationship was on the rocks.
I got back to Oz the second time, with only a couple of coins left, they'd dropped down to $400 or so, things didn't work out with her and I just fell into a rut after being on such a high. I talked mum into selling me her old car for a few bitcoin and moved to Melbourne to try something new. Around this time projects like ethereum, ripple, dash, monero were all starting up and since I'd been burned on a few scams and failures, I doubted my ability to discern what was going on and out of fear didn't get involved with any of them.
During the run up of the coins from $15-$1250 I'd been digging into researching all about decentralized/disruptive technologies and had been developing ideas for radical community projects utilizing the benefits of open source technologies and distributed ledgers to greatly increase efficiency, as well as transparency and accountability. When I moved to Melbourne I went to a few bitcoin meetups but just found that they were full of traders and business folk but not many were into the radical side of things. I started knocking around with a few crew from the party scene and began brainstorming some ideas for festival/community development through crypto.
Though at the peak the projects that I'd been ideating had seemed almost tangible, when back in the real world with no money, they became much further away. I couldn't go back to the old way of thinking in the traditional paradigm, but without a bankroll I didn't really know where to start. I still wanted those things, but had no capital and no network. Through my research into crypto I'd discovered the scheme that is the Federal Reserve and the corruption of fiat currency and through that found myself being drawn to conspiracy and becoming addicted to "figuring it all out".
I got a bit of casual work, but I just couldn't bring myself to engage with the system on anything other than my terms. I still dreamed of community development but all my time was spent in the web of lies and paranoia that is the conspiracy realm. From my solid acid trip I'd got enough of a glimpse of the spiritual nature of things that I still manged to hold the light through my foray into the pit, but I became a bit consumed by it all. I had another couple of trips that showed me a look at an interdimensional world but in glimpsing them, I also took on a lot of paranoia that I had to work through. I started seeing bitcoin as the system for the NWO to implement their cashless economy and mark everyone for eternal damnation.
I kind of stayed in this world for nearly a year or so, until I stocked up on DMT from a guy at a festival and got stuck into that as a bit of a practice. What it told me was that all this world is my creation. The abundance I experience comes from a state of mind and similarly the poverty I experience comes from the opposite state of mind. It told me the most important thing I could be doing, is working to cultivate a mentality of abundance. I began cultivating that idea and whenever I was consciously aware of a choice between abundance and scarcity I would endeavour to choose abundance.
A few months later, I ended up falling in love, getting married, meeting a friend who has a project called "abundance" (where he is trying to cultivate the shift in perception on a mass scale), had a kid, took on a massive build/renovation to a warehouse/ started a business. Recently the business has gotten to a point where I actually have a couple of spare bucks again and so I decided to enter back into the world of cryptocurrency to see where it's at. I got 2 bitcoin and thought I'd spread them around on a few of the alt coins to see how they go.
I'm still distrustful of the story behind bitcoins inception and it's role in the overall scheme of things, but I have regained faith in my ability to discern what's going on. In the bundle of cryptos there probably is one that will be the vehicle for the beast to get their subjects, but that's not going to stop me from riding the train to abundance town in the mean time.
I bought a bitcoin and spread it around on a few of the alt coins that I thought looked interesting eth, etc, ltc, pivx and ripple. I think Ripple is set to go bananas. They're currently working with about 150 banks to use ripple to settle international transfers. Apparently they're also in negotiation with the reserve bank of Japan to utilize it. If you're aware that the US economy has been set up to tank, and there's going to be a restructuring of the power to an eastern led financial system, ripple seems like the prime candidate the facilitate that. When they roll out new SDR backed BRICS currency, they're not going to be able to just implement a new standard by coercsion. It's going to be by utilizing existing services that are already being used by a number of people. Ripple is a Silicon Valley start up, and if you know anything about the MIC involvement in SV, you'd know many of the companies from there are simply fronts to enable the implementation of the technology that TPTB are ready to release to us. In the 2-3 weeks that I've had my ripples it's already gone up 100% but I think it could possibly be at $1 (from $0.07 now) within a year if they succeed in taking down SWIFT.
I was talking to my friend with the abundance project about crpyto and how we're going to liberate ourselves from fiat slavery and he saw a number plate on a car in front of him that read XTC 999. I thought I remembered a coin that had the trading abbreviation of XTC so I had a look around on it. There was in fact a coin that had that but when I was reading the thread about it on bitcointalk it appeared that the project had stalled. In the same thread someone mentioned that although it had stalled, if you like the look of the project, you should take a look at IOTA.
I looked it up and what do ya know, it's a super innovative new protocol designed to for intermachine operability in the internet of things. It doesn't run on the blockchain, but rather has a new type of ledger called the tangle which does asynchronous settlement which their developers allow it to scale infinitely as it increases in efficiency as it records more and more transactions. Because the individual making the transaction does the POW at the time of the transaction, it also allows IOTA to run without fees because spamming the network actually assists it by confirming more and more transactions. I did some digging on it and because it's not listed on any exchanges it's a bit harder to come by, but I was super keen to get some so I threw a bitcoin on it over on their trading channel on #slack. In the two weeks that I've had my IOTA it's already increased by another 66% as well.
I don't really know what the point of this post is, but I just wanted to share with you all because I love you and I think that we're approaching a point where the traditional financial system is about the be dismantled and the new one is rolling out. The new one isn't some currency that a bunch of coders in a Russian office have been working on. The Russian coders are working for ethereum, the MIC is working through Ripple in Silicon Valley. Having projects developed in an office is old school. It's way more efficient for TPTB to release some technology to the masses and have them develop their own chains that will enslave them. These companies now are the companies that will service the NWO's cashless economy. I would encourage you to get in and get some while the going it good and then put those earnings towards setting yourself up so that when the day comes that "none shall trade without the mark of the beast", you're living off grid in your open source gifting economy and you don't give a fuck.
submitted by whipnil to C_S_T [link] [comments]

Best of Buttcoin: 2014

There's been some fantastic work done in this subreddit spreading disinformation researching, criticising, and debunking bitcoin and its sacred cows over the past year, which I would like to celebrate.
So here's some posts I saved on bitcoin-related topics. But I started saving things too late... So if you have and/or remember any great posts from the past year, dig them up and post them here.
Also, unironically, maybe someone should start a buttcoin wiki

First, three pieces of investigative journalism from Buttcoin's top minds. Here Charlie_Shrem examines the environmental impact of bitcoin mining. Key finding: For every Bitcoin transaction, 47 kilograms of CO2 is released into the atmosphere from the miners alone.
Current hash rate: 261,900,382 GH/s
Number of transactions per day: 71,331
If we assume rather conservatively that 1GH/s = 1 watt on average, then this would mean 261,900,382W is being used to power the network. We can simplify this to 261,900 kW.
Some miners can do better than 1W per 1GH/s, but many if not most do worse (i.e. 2W per 1GH/s to 10W per 1GH/s).
Going by the figure of 0.527kg CO2 / kWh found on this page,
0.527kg CO2 x 261,900 kW x 24 hours = 3,312,511.2 kg CO2 per day
Now,
3,312,511.2 kg CO2 / 71,331 transactions = 46.44 kg CO2 per transaction
For comparison, even going by this Coindesk Article, an ATM produces daily 3.162kg in CO2 emissions.
0.25kwH x 0.527kg CO2 x 24 hours = 3.162kg/day.
That means that the carbon emission for one Bitcoin transaction is equivalent to about 15 ATMs processing perhaps hundreds or thousands of transactions in a day combined.

Earlier this month Frankeh abruptly interrupted remittance-focused annular onanism by issuing a challenge: to find a single instance where bitcoin works out cheaper than a fiat alternative. In case you need to ask... Nope.
Right, there's a bunch of circlejerking happening in /Bitcoin right now so I think it's time to cut through the bullshit one way or another.
Country to send money to.
The biggest remittance markets are China, Indian and the Philippines.
I believe that since /Bitcoin often gives the Philippines as an example of successful Bitcoin remittance then it is the perfect country to use in our challenge.
Country to send money from.
According to this wikipedia article Malaysia and Canada have the biggest expat Filipino communities. 900,000 and 500,000.
So I think we should do the calculations based on both countries.
The methodology
Most people are not paid in Bitcoin. This is a fact. So for our calculation you must start with fiat, and end in fiat. We're not doing these calculations based on future utility of Bitcoin (No, neo. I'm saying...), we're doing them on the current utility.
We will also be doing a bank to bank remittance, because that is nice an constant. We don't need to take into account pick up locations Bitcoin remittance allows and pick up locations normal remittance allows. They'll vary too much.
Time will also not be taken into account, as time doesn't actually matter when it comes to remittance. Now, Bitcoiners might shout about this particular rule but let me explain my logic behind this.
A foreign worker gets paid every Friday. They start the remittance process on the Friday and regardless of if it takes 0, 3, or 5 days their family back in their home country just needs to base their life around money coming in on remitters pay day + 0, 3, or 5 days. Time taken is of no real value when it comes to remittance. All that matters is that it consistently arrives on day x.
As such, any remittance services that take over 5 working days are to be ignored for the sake of this challenge.
The amount
The amount is going to be 25% of the average wage in each of the countries. This isn't extremely scientific because it doesn't particularly need to be, and the figures are hard to come by.
So 1826.75 MYR for Malaysia and 1,398 CAD for Canada.
Don't bother complaining about these, they're just examples.
Few more ground rules
  • We're going to be going from bank/bank card to bank regardless, so we're not interested in banking fees on either side. They will be the same regardless of Bitcoin or WU (for example)
  • It must be from local fiat to foreign fiat.. You can't palm off the conversion fee to the receivers bank to keep fees down.
  • Any remittance service can be used, as long as Bitcoin is involved for people fighting the Bitcoin corner and Bitcoin isn't used for people fighting the WU (or similar) corner.
  • You must go through the process and document all the fees for each. Fees to look out for are currency spreads, transaction fees on exchanges, etc

Finally a recent thread, but commendable all the same. Hodldown presents some research leading to facts overturning years of knowledge in the bitcoin wiki. Even us shills have been laughing at bitcoin's pathetic capability of 7 transactions per second. It turns out, we were out by at least a factor of 2:
The average number of transactions per block right now is: 665 transactions
The average block size is 0.372731752748842mb.
That means the average transaction is 0.00056049887mb. Which means 1mb of transactions (the limit) is 1784 transactions
Assuming a 10 minute block (a whole other can of worms) that means there is 10*60 seconds.
1784/600 isn't 7. It's a 2.97.
Bitcoin at a technical level can not handle even 3 transactions per second.

In one of the frequent bitcoin user invasions, PayingWithActualMone outlines why the "solution in search of a problem" isn't that great of a solution to much either.
On the transaction side: the Bitcoin community seems convinced that banks are ripping them off (which imo they are not), and that it can be fixed by applying some magicsauce over a transaction that is facilitated by banks regardless. So far in practice I haven't seen any evidence of the 'fast' 'cheap' and 'easy' transactions, like most recently with Mollie. They usually compare the fees of BTC>BTC transactions to the fees of Chase Mastercard > a fucking nomad in the Sahara (with consumer protection) to prove their point. The community also seems convinced that the entire world banks the way America does, not realizing that in Europe banking has been dirt cheap for years.
And the security... oh boy the security. Half the population can't manage to go without a virus for one year (not an actual statistic), and now you expect them to secure their coins? People are dumb as shit, and software is always one step behind the exploits. We could of course create Bitcoin banks, but then there isn't much left of the original idea.
On the 'intrinsic value' side: what the hell is wrong with people. If the underlying product is no good in any aspect, why is it worth much? Right now (that's like 5 years after introduction mind you) BTC is used in 3 types of transactions: Silk Road, SatoshiDice & extremely questionable transactions. It does its job well in that aspect, and that's all it will ever be. The community just turned the technology into a giant ponzi, and they don't care as long as they get paid. The people actually doing business in Bitcoin probably don't care about the price that much.

Someone who deleted their account, on the argument that merchant adoption is a cause of the price drop:
That's just an excuse butters use for the price going down.
There's no real difference between selling bitcoin for fiat and exchanging bitcoin for goods and services. Both are a form of sale of bitcoin, an expression of preference for something other than bitcoin.
If on balance, there's more flow of bitcoin into fiat, goods or services than there is a corresponding opposing flow, then it is simply the market expressing the view that bitcoin is overvalued. Therefore, the reduction in the value of bitcoin (as valued in fiat) is a sincere expression of the market's view of what the correct price for bitcoin is.
Think of an example: A true believer has 20 BTC. He exchanges 10 BTC with Dell for a whizzy server. Dell (or another intermediary) sell the 10 BTC at an exchange in return for fiat. The market price of BTC goes down.
The price goes down, simply because a true believer cut his bitcoin holding, he got out. He thought having a server now was worth more to him than 10 tickets to the moon. Which is an expression of a negative view of the future value of bitcoin. A simple "aggressive" sale in trading parlance.

A late entry from jstolfi. A concise description of the Satoshi/Bitcoin origin story .
My understanding is that "Satoshi" had been trying to solve the technical problem of convincing a bunch of anonymous, volunteers to maintain and protect a distributed ledger, with no central authority.
He thought that he had a solution, in the form of a protocol that included PoW, miner rewards, longest chain, etc. The solution seemed to work on paper; but, as a good scientist, he started an experiment in order to check whether it would also work in practice.
For that experiment to be meaningful, it would have been enough if the coin was mined for several years only by a few hundred computer nerds, with the cooperation of some friendly pizza places and bars.
The US$ price of the coin was not important to the experiment, and it was never meant to be a weapon for libertarians, a way to buy drugs or evade taxes, a competitor to credit cards or Western Union, a sound investment or item for day-trading. All those "goals" were tacked onto it afterwards.

bob237 comments on the the absurdity of coinbase and it's touted 'rebuy' scheme,
It gets even better than that, actually. A lot of bitcoiners don't like 'losing' bitcoin, and so coinbase added a popular 'repurchase bitcoin' feature that automatically debits your bank account to replenish the BTC in your coinbase account after a purchase.
The ultimate result then is that you pay coinbase fiat, they take their cut, and then send that fiat on to the merchant. All 'bitcoins' used in the middle of the transaction are not really bitcoins, but just abstractions in coinbase's internal [off-chain] accounting system.
It's a crap version of paypal, no consumer protection and a ton of fees hidden in the spread when you buy your chuck-e-cheese tokens from them.

saigonsquare explains why ubiquitous tipping isn't the the killer app that it has been touted as, and why bitcoiners may fail to grasp this
Most people understand that there are different sorts of interaction. There are purely social interactions, there are quid-pro-quo interactions, and there are market interactions. Mixing those up causes embarrassment and insult. I wouldn't try to pay my mother-in-law ten bucks for cooking Christmas dinner, and I certainly wouldn't try to pay her ten cents. If a waiter suggests I try the raspberry tart, I won't get away with offering to bake him some cookies next week in compensation; if an office mate suggests I have a slice of her birthday cake, I'll be insulted if she brings me a bill for it. If I spend an hour helping my friend move apartments and he thanks me, I'm fine; we're friends helping each other out. If he pays me two bucks, I'm insulted; he's canceled the social nature of the interaction and instead simply bought my labor for a fraction of its going rate. I'm up two bucks but down a friend.
Ancapspergers, not particularly understanding any sort of interaction more complicated than buying a cheeseburger at Wendy's, assume that all interactions are a form of market transaction, and set pricing accordingly. Normal humans get offended by a penny shaving, because it cancels the social nature of the interaction and turns it into a market transaction--and then informs the recipient that his contribution to the transaction was of negligible value.
submitted by occasionallyrude to Buttcoin [link] [comments]

FOR THOSE NOT IN US. CSPAN-3 hearing BITCOIN

Right now, Senator Tom Carper is giving an introduction into what bitcoin can be used to buy. He mentioned buying all goods but specifically spoke of drugs, weapons, and how it can be used to exploit children.
Carper mentioned how the silk road was taken down in a joint effort by the CIA, FBI and dept. of Homeland security.
WILL CONTINUE UPDATING
BITCOIN TIP: public address- 1AkF4HaJrJzXVYuSxifwLUWNEwhbGv5sXu
3:10 EST: jennifer Shasky calvery- Treasury Department - Financial Crimes Mythili Ramen (head of the Dept. of Justic Crimnal Division) Edward Lowry- special agent in charge of criminal investigation division
3:13 EST - jennifer Shasky calvery statement. 'Recognizing new payment methods must keep pace with laws against money laundering and illegal money transfers. Users of virtual currencies don't have transaction limits, is secure, can be used for money laundering. Illicit actors use virtual currencies in order to launder money, enable drug trafficking and move child abuse forward.
For businesses, complying with Federal laws is good for the business integrity.
Bringing virtual currencies into regulation will be positive for the US financial system.
3:20 EST: Mythili Raman
Virtual currencies are viewed through the lens of crimnal activity. Criminals will always look for new ways to hide their crimes. The criminal division's main aim is to reduce the ability of criminals to use virtual currencies for illegal activity.
Virtual currencies (as long as the comply with laws) are not illegal. They can be convenient for consumers because they are quick. These same currencies can also be used by criminals for drugs, weapon sales, and child pornography.
In 2007 - EGOLD moved 6 million dollars per day which may have been used for sale of drugs and child pornograpgy
When virtual currencies fail to live up to their Financial Laws, the Justice division will come after them.
Silk road- the largest online marketplace for illegal substances accepts BITCOINs exclusively for payment. When silk road was shut down, the US sized upwards of 70 million dollars from the silk road website.
The US justice department is encouraged by virtual currencies reaching out to comply with FINCEN's laws. (Financial Crimes. Enforcement Network)
3:27 EST- Edward Lowry Digital currencies have continually grown over the past 17 years. Since Criminals and other illegal organizations use virtual currencies such as E-gold and Liberty reserve for illegal operations
As FINCEN emphasized, digital currency exchanges MUST comply with money laundering laws.
The secret service has successfully found and arrested leaders of illegal organizations whom use digital currencies to fund their activities.
Digital currencies are tools used by a wide variety of criminals. The secret service and ICE (immigration and customs enforcement) cooperate with FINCEN in order to find criminals who use virtual currencies for money laundering.
3:34 EST Sen. Tom Caper Asks about the early days of virtual currencies as well as what the future holds for future currencies.
3:35 EST- Jennifer Shasky Calvery When there is a new "player" in the currency industries, most people think about the gaps that will exist in the market and how criminals will use it for illegal activity. Moving forward with change is very important though, so regulation is necessary.
3:36 EST- Mythili Ramen Virtual currencies are not illegal as long as they comply with money laundering laws. The Criminal division needs to be vigilant towards virtual currencies in order to make sure they actively attempt to comply with laws.
3:38 EST -Edward Lowry The secret service's hallmark is to adopt their defenses to an ever changing threat.
3:39 EST- Sen. Tom Carper "what roll does the legislative body need in order to combat the dark side of this technology?"
3:41 EST - Edward Lowry Device fraud- today anyone in the world can reach anyone else in the world. This has changed how ICE and the secret service must combat illegal activity.
making his case for more money to his department
3:42 EST- Sen. Tom Carper - Can Law enforcement keep up with the changing technology?"
3:44 EST- Mythili Ramen Liberty reserve was taken down in a coordinated arrest done by the US branches joined with other governments. The ability of the criminal division is evolving just as much as criminal activity is evolving.
3:47 EST- jennifer Shasky calvery Congress passing the Bank secrecy act. in 2011, the justice dept needed flexibility in order to combat digital currencies. With the USA patriot act sec 311, gives FINCEN the authority to name a foreign entity as using money laundering, and thus cut off from the US market.
3:49 EST- Sen. Tom Carper - "Give examples of how virtual currencies have worked out for the good"
3:50 EST- jennifer Shasky calvery
Online banking and ACH (picture deposit) makes money exchange much easier for the consumer. But with each of these, we had to think about how criminals could exploit it.
"CASH IS STILL THE BEST MEANS FOR LAUNDERING MONEY" - jennifer Shasky calvery
3:52 EST- Sen. Tom Carper " Do you see gaps in our legislation regarding virtual currencies?"
3:53 EST- Edward Lowry
The secret service recognizes that the high level cyber criminals HAVE NOT moved towards P2P currencies such as bitcoin. Many high-level criminals use centralized online currencies based in places with less regulatory laws.
3:54 EST- Sen. Tom Carper "Which agencies need to be at the forefront of recognizing virtual currencies"
3:55 EST- Mythili Ramen The FBI, DEA, OFAC, IRS are necessary participators but are already participators. The National crime agency in the UK has also participated. The Criminal division invites any other entities for help in identifying emerging threats and what governments can do about them
Currently, the criminal statutes used thus far have been effective. The substantive criminal statute, murder statute, and money laundering statutes have already been used to prosecute criminals that use virtual currencies.
Many updates to laws can still be made.
3:59 EST- Sen. Tom Carper The JAO reports with the help of the IRS on "tax gap." 100's of millions of dollars in taxes that are owed to the treasury. The number is going down over the past 10 years
In may of this year, "virtual currencies could prevent a real vulnerability in the current system."
Question, "do you know the current guidance of that status?"
4:02 EST- Jennifer Shasky Calvery
FINCEN, once it collects financial data, disseminates the information to law enforcement. This is not only for taxes but also for evidence against criminals.
The JAO and FINCEN are working diligently to modify tax laws to incorporate virtual currencies.
The focus of FINCEN is to combat illegal use of virtual currencies while still within U.S laws. Conveniently, many of the laws are very flexible.
4:06 EST- Sen. Tom Carper After the SILK ROAD shut down, many have popped up in its place. "How do we combat these websites?"
4:07 EST- Edward Lowry
We believe there are 3 infrastructures in place. The SILK ROAD forums, the digital currencies (those which fall outside of the guidance of FINCEN), and "bulletproof hosting" -an organization that provides web hosting to anyone with servers in countries with little regulation.
4:09 EST- Mythili Ramen
The main problem is anonymity. The criminal division has created tools and strategies to combat this. (not said) but this is the TOR javascript exploit We have been successful in combating criminals who use anonymity to continue illegal activity.
4:10 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
Bitcoin and virtual currencies may move overseas to countries with less regulatory agencies. What can we do to combat this? How do we make business stay in the US?
4:12 EST-jennifer Shasky Calvery
Bitcoin is going to be a big player in the future of the exchange of goods and services. The financial action task force does a good job at making the countries around the world comply with regulatory laws.
4:15 EST - Mythili Ramen
This hearing is important for the law agencies because talking about these problems is not easy. Virtual currencies in of themselves are not illegal. Innovation is important. Just as criminals have done for ages, this is just another means for illegal activity. We need to stay vigilant in keeping pace with evolving virtual currencies.
4:17 EST- Edward Lowry The secret service will continue to work strategically to remove the gravest structures to the [US] infrastructure. We are going to have to adopt and jump over hurdles but we will work with foreign partners to make this happen. We will continue to work as a part of DHS to eliminate these threats. We believe that aggressive acts by law enforcement will benefit the world as a whole
4:18 EST-Jennifer Shasky Calvery
I heard a CEO of a fairly large bank say, "having the privilege to be a part of the financial industry comes with great responsibility. While innovation is a wonderful thing, it does come with obligations to become part of the US financial system. Regulation in place have help in minimizing the risk and the burden. We ask that businesses do this, put in place AML protections, register with FINCEN, maintain records (including suspicious reports)
We believe that these requests are reasonable because these currencies have already been used for illicit activity.
4:21 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
"This has been a thought provoking and encouraging discussion"
"It's not true We have to choose between a stronger economy and a clean environment"
"Is it possible to reap the benefits of this virtual currencies while still being able to clean up criminal activity?"
-RECESS- and change of panel
4:28 EST Introduction by Sen. Tom Carper Ernie Allen- Centre for missing & Exploited children Patrick Murck-General council of BITCOIN foundation Jerry Brito-Senior researcher of Technology at George Mason university. Jeremy Allaire- Circle Internet Financial CEO
4:30 EST- Ernie Allen Our goal is to bring people together to protect the digital economy while combating its misuse. We are excited for digital currencies to give "banking" to adults all over the world. Our concern today is the use of digital currencies in child pornography. Most countries have not added regulation to digital currencies.
Over the past year, I have consulted financial experts of this issue. Child pornography is being created and disseminated by using anatomizing technologies and virtual currencies.
Freedom hosting was shut down by law enforcement by penetrating a loophole in freedom hosting's servers which gave users identities away.
Most of the arrests of those using anonymous networks are of those who are misusing the network. Because of this, we believe that we are not catching the high-level criminals who are using these networks.
We can press for global cooperation to solve these problems. Digital currencies move from nation to nation.
We need to address the core problem which is internet anonymity. An environment in which child exploiters can thrive and not be caught should not be allowed.
Anonymity allows illegal activity, but also acts to give a voice to those against oppressive regimes.
4:39 EST- Patrick Murck There is no single bitcoin company that manages the value of bitcoin or the trade of bitcoins.
Bitcoin is like email for money. It is secure any completely transparent. Bitcoin can operate without 3rd parties.
Financial exclusion is a problem for the US. There is a rising tide of un-banked people within our borders. Bitcoin can help move people from a trapped economy to a globally connected economy.
Just like any currency, bitcoin can be used for illegal activity. It is no easier to commit crime with bitcoin then it is with any other currency.
Keeping the bitcoin network safe is all of out opportunity. When the SILK ROAD was shut down, the bitcoin community was excited.
Bitcoin is not some magical cloaking device that allows criminals free reign. The use of bitcoins is not un-regulated. The exchanges have a deep understanding of how to effectively allow users to trade bitcoin with fiat currencies.
Bitcoin exchanges- "If you give us clear rules, we will work to abide by them"
We would like to thank FINCEN to opening up the dialog about bitcoin. The bitcoin foundation looks forward to continuing in this dialog with the government and the public.
4:47 EST- Jeremy Allaire
As bitcoin moves into mainstream acceptance, it is important that governments fully understand how to include bitcoin into existing laws.
Bitcoin allows innovation in currency, exchange, and payment that many other currencies cannot offer. Much of our current infrastructure for finances has existed before the internet was invented.
It is a risk if the government doesn't support businesses that want to use bitcoins. Such businesses may be encouraged to move offshore.
The U.S. falls behind in this critical economic innovation. A bitcoin exchange in CHINA has become the single largest currency exchange in the world . We need to be open and evolving.
4:53 EST Jerry Brito
From facebook credit to world of warcraft gold, Virtual currencies are nothing new.
Prior to Bitcoins invention in 2009, all virtual currencies needed to be exchanged through an intermediary.
Emerging technologies allow great benefits but great risks. 3-d printers revolutionize personal creation, but also creation of guns.
While Bitcoin transactions don't need intermediaries, many exchanges can still convert government currency to bitcoins.
Criminals are more likely to use centralized currencies because they can lie about how much money has been moved. Currencies such the bitcoin infrastructure show every transaction that happens.
The U.S. could loose it's headstart on an emerging economy if it chooses to create strong regulatory laws.
4:59 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
"Where is the general agreement on the panel, and if not, how can we make agreement?"
5:00 EST- Ernie Allen There is clear agreement that we can't just ignore the misuse, and that the misuse jeopardizes the currency in the long run.
5:02 EST Patrick Murck
There is a real need to create on ramps into the traditional economic system. The biggest obstacle to that happening is the ability of businesses to get bank accounts in the current system, even a checking account.
If you have the word "bitcoin" anywhere around you, your file will be cast aside.
5:04 EST- Jeremy Allaire
Anonymity needs to be addressed in some way
POST IS TOO LONG, LINK TO PART II
http://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/1qxgc9/for_those_not_in_us_cspan3_hearing_bitcoin/
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