Best Bitcoin Tax Calculators For 2020 - Complete Guide to

Bitcoin 11 Years - Achievements, Lies, and Bullshit Claims So Far - Tooootally NOT a SCAM !!!!

That's right folks, it's that time again for the annual review of how Bitcoin is going: all of those claims, predictions, promises .... how many have turned out to be true, and how many are completely bogus ???
Please post / link this on Bitcoin (I am banned there for speaking the truth, so I cannot do it) ... because it'a way past time those poor clueless mushrooms were exposed to the truth.
Anyway, without further ado, I give you the Bitcoin's Achievements, Lies, and Bullshit Claims So Far ...
.
Bitcoin Achievements so far:
  1. It has spawned a cesspool of scams (2000+ shit coin scams, plus 100's of other scams, frauds, cons).
  2. Many 1,000's of hacks, thefts, losses.
  3. Illegal Use Cases: illegal drugs, illegal weapons, tax fraud, money laundering, sex trafficking, child pornography, hit men / murder-for-hire, ransomware, blackmail, extortion, and various other kinds of fraud and illicit activity.
  4. Legal Use Cases: Steam Games, Reddit, Expedia, Stripe, Starbucks, 1000's of merchants, cryptocurrency conferences, Ummm ????? The few merchants who "accept Bitcoin" immediately convert it into FIAT after the sale, or require you to sell your coins to BitPay or Coinbase for real money, and will then take that money. Some of the few who actually accept bitcoin haven't seen a customer who needed to pay with bitcoin for the last six months, and their cashiers no longer know how to handle that.
  5. Contributing significantly to Global Warming.
  6. Wastes vasts amounts of electricity on useless, do nothing work.
  7. Exponentially raises electricity prices when big miners move into regions where electricity was cheap.
  8. It’s the first "currency" that is not self-sustainable. It operates at a net loss, and requires continuous outside capital to replace the capital removed by miners to pay their costs. It’s literally a "black hole currency."
  9. It created a new way for people living too far from Vegas to gamble all their life savings away.
  10. Spawned "blockchain technology", a powerful technique that lets incompetent programmers who know almost nothing about databases, finance, programming, or blockchain scam millions out of gullible VC investors, banks, and governments.
  11. Increased China's foreign trade balance by a couple billion dollars per year.
  12. Helped the FBI and other law enforcement agents easily track down hundreds of drug traffickers and drug users.
  13. Wasted thousands if not millions of man-hours of government employees and legislators, in mostly fruitless attempts to understand, legitimize, and regulate the "phenomenon", and to investigate and prosecute its scams.
  14. Rekindled the hopes of anarcho-capitalists and libertarians for a global economic collapse, that would finally bring forth their Mad Max "utopia".
  15. Added another character to Unicode (no, no, not the "poo" 💩 character ... that was my first guess as well 🤣)
  16. Provides an easy way for malware and ransomware criminals to ply their trade and extort hospitals, schools, local councils, businesses, utilities, as well as the general population.
.
Correct Predictions:
  1. 2015-12: "1,000 dollar in 2015", u/Luka_Magnotta, aka time traveler from the future, 31-Aug-2013, https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/1lfobc/i_am_a_timetraveler_from_the_future_here_to_beg/ (Technically, this prediction is WRONG because the highest price reached in 2015 was $495.56 according to CMC. Yes, Bitcoin reached $1,000 in 2013 and 2014, but that's NOT what the prediction says).
  2. 2017-12: "10,000 in 2017", u/Luka_Magnotta, aka time traveler from the future, 31-Aug-2013, https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/1lfobc/i_am_a_timetraveler_from_the_future_here_to_beg/
  3. 2018-04: $10,000 (by April 2018), Mike Novogratz, link #1: https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/, link #2: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-11-21/mike-novogratz-says-bitcoin-will-end-the-year-at-10-000
  4. 2018-12: $10,000 (by 2018), Tim Draper, link #1: https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/, link #2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3AW5s6QkRRY
  5. Any others ? (Please tell me).
.
Bitcoin Promises / Claims / Price Predictions that turned out to be lies and bullshit:
  1. ANONYMOUS
  2. CENSORSHIP RESISTANT
  3. FRICTIONLESS
  4. TRUSTLESS
  5. UNCENSORABLE
  6. UNTRACEABLE
  7. SAFE
  8. SECURE
  9. YOU CANNOT LOSE
  10. NOT A SCAM
  11. PERMISSIONLESS
  12. GUARANTEED PRIVACY
  13. CANNOT BE SEIZED
  14. CANNOT BE CONFISCATED
  15. Be your own bank
  16. Regulation-proof
  17. NO MIDDLEMEN
  18. DECENTRALIZED
  19. Instantaneous transactions
  20. Fast transactions
  21. Zero / No transaction fees
  22. Low transaction fees
  23. A store of value
  24. A deflationary digital asset
  25. "A deflationary digital asset that no single human being can destroy."
  26. "an asset that is equally as dual use as a car, water, or any other traditional element that has existed."
  27. "Digital gold"
  28. Easy to use
  29. Cannot be stolen
  30. Cannot be hacked
  31. Can be mined by anyone
  32. Can be mined by anyone, even with an old computer or laptop
  33. Cannot be centralized
  34. Will return power back to the people.
  35. Not a Ponzi scam
  36. Not a Pyramid scam
  37. Never pay tax again
  38. Your gains cannot be taxed
  39. A currency
  40. An amazing new class of asset
  41. An asset
  42. A means to economic freedom
  43. A store of value
  44. The best investment the word has ever seen
  45. A great investment
  46. Efficient
  47. Scalable
  48. Stable
  49. Resilient
  50. Reliable
  51. Low energy
  52. Low risk
  53. Redistribute wealth to everybody
  54. No more have's and have not's
  55. No more US and THEM
  56. No more disadvantaged people
  57. No more RICH and POOR
  58. No more poor people
  59. Uses amazing new technology
  60. Uses ingenious new technology
  61. Satishi Nakamoto invented ...
  62. Segwit will solve all of Bitcoin's woes
  63. Lightning Network will solve all of Bitcoin's woes
  64. Limited by scarcity
  65. Can only go up in value
  66. Price cannot crash
  67. Has intrinsic value
  68. Value will always be worth more than cost to mine
  69. Adoption by investors is increasing exponentially
  70. Adoption by investors is increasing
  71. Adoption by merchants is increasing exponentially
  72. Adoption by merchants is increasing
  73. You are secure if you keep your coins on an exchange
  74. You are secure if you keep your coins in a hardware wallet
  75. You are secure if you keep your coins in an air-gapped Linux PC
  76. Will change the world
  77. "the next phase in human evolution"
  78. "Blockchain is more encompassing than the internet"
  79. Blockchain can solve previously unsolvable problems.
  80. "The only regulation we need is the blockchain"
  81. "Bank the unbanked"
  82. "To abolish financial slavery and the state's toxic monopoly on money."
  83. "To have better tools in the fight against the state violence and taxation."
  84. "To stamp information on a blockchain forever so we can bypass state censorship, copyrights, patents(informational monopolies) etc."
  85. Will destroy / overthrow FIAT
  86. Will destroy / overthrow the world's governments
  87. Will destroy / overthrow the banking system
  88. Will destroy / overthrow the world economies
  89. Will free people from tyranny
  90. Will give people financial freedom
  91. Will bring world peace
  92. Never going below $19K again
  93. Never going below $18K again
  94. Never going below $17K again
  95. Never going below $16K again
  96. Never going below $15K again
  97. Never going below $14K again
  98. Never going below $13K again
  99. Never going below $12K again
  100. Never going below $11K again
  101. Never going below $10K again
  102. Never going below $9K again
  103. Never going below $8K again
  104. Never going below $7K again
  105. Never going below $6K again
  106. Never going below $5K again
  107. Never going below $4K again
  108. Is NOT a Scam
  109. Hashing Power secures the Bitcoin network
  110. Untraceable, private transactions
  111. Guaranteed privacy
  112. Not created out of thin air
  113. Not created out of thin air by unregulated, unbacked entities
  114. Totally NOT a scam
  115. Is not used primarily by crimonals, drug dealers, or money launderers.
  116. 100% secure
  117. 2010 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  118. 2011 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  119. 2012 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  120. 2013 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  121. 2014 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  122. 2015 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  123. 2016 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  124. 2017 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  125. 2018 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  126. 2019 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  127. 2010: MASS ADOPTION any day now"
  128. 2011: MASS ADOPTION aany day now"
  129. 2012: MASS ADOPTION aaany day now"
  130. 2013: MASS ADOPTION aaaany day now"
  131. 2014: MASS ADOPTION aaaaany day now"
  132. 2015: MASS ADOPTION aaaaaany day now"
  133. 2016: MASS ADOPTION aaaaaaany day now"
  134. 2017: MASS ADOPTION aaaaaaaany day now"
  135. 2018: MASS ADOPTION aaaaaaaaany day now"
  136. 2019: MASS ADOPTION aaaaaaaaany day now"
  137. "Financial Freedom, bro."
  138. no single entity, government or individual, can alter or reverse its transactions
  139. insurance against the tyranny of state
  140. Bitcoin has come to destroy all governments and bring about the libertarian utopia of my dreams.
  141. The major issues in Bicoin's network will be fixed. This is still early days, Bitcoin has only been around for 2+ years.
  142. The major issues in Bicoin's network will be fixed. This is still early days, Bitcoin has only been around for 5+ years.
  143. The major issues in Bicoin's network will be fixed. This is still early days, Bitcoin has only been around for 7+ years.
  144. The major issues in Bicoin's network will be fixed. This is still early days, Bitcoin has only been around for 9+ years.
  145. 1,000's of predictions of skyrocketing and/or never falling prices
  146. Escape the petty rivalries of warring powers and nation states by scattering control among the many. The Bitcoin Cash debacle proves that even the most cryptographically secure plans of mice and men often go awry. Ref: https://www.reddit.com/Buttcoin/comments/9zfhb6/like_theres_only_one_flaw_with_buttcoin_crash/ea8s11m
  147. People will NEVER be able to welch out of bets or deals again. Nov-2018, Ref: https://www.reddit.com/Buttcoin/comments/9zvpl2/the_guy_who_made_the_1000_bet_that_btc_wouldnt/
  148. "Everything will be better, faster, and cheaper.", Brock Pierce, EOS.io shill video.
  149. "Everything will be more connected.", Brock Pierce, EOS.io shill video.
  150. "Everything will be more trustworthy.", Brock Pierce, EOS.io shill video.
  151. "Everything will be more secure.", Brock Pierce, EOS.io shill video.
  152. "Everything that exists is no-longer going to exist in the way that it does today.", Brock Pierce, EOS.io shill video.
  153. "Everything in this world is about to get better.", Brock Pierce, EOS.io shill video.
  154. You are a slave to the bankers
  155. The bankers print money and then you pay for it
  156. Bitcoin is The Peoples Money
  157. Bitcoin will set you free
  158. Bitcoin will set you free from the slavery of the banks and the government Ref: https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/cd2q94/bitcoin_shall_set_you_free/
  159. ~~Bitcoin is "striking fear into the hearts of bankers, precisely because Bitcoin eliminates the need for banks. ~~, Mark Yusko, billionaire investor and Founder of Morgan Creek Capital, https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/
  160. "When transactions are verified on a Blockchain, banks become obsolete.", Mark Yusko, billionaire investor and Founder of Morgan Creek Capital, https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/
  161. SnapshillBot quotes from delusional morons:
  162. "A bitcoin miner in every device and in every hand."
  163. "All the indicators are pointing to a huge year and bigger than anything we have seen before."
  164. "Bitcoin is communism and democracy working hand in hand."
  165. "Bitcoin is freedom, and we will soon be free."
  166. "Bitcoin isn't calculated risk, you're right. It's downright and painfully obvious that it will consume global finance."
  167. "Bitcoin most disruptive technology of last 500 years"
  168. "Bitcoin: So easy, your grandma can use it!"
  169. "Creating a 4th Branch of Government - Bitcoin"
  170. "Future generations will cry laughing reading all the negativity and insanity vomited by these permabears."
  171. "Future us will thank us."
  172. "Give Bitcoin two years"
  173. "HODLING is more like being a dutiful guardian of the most powerful economic force this planet has ever seen and getting to have a say about how that force is unleashed."
  174. "Cut out the middleman"
  175. "full control of your own assets"
  176. "reduction in wealth gap"
  177. "no inflation"
  178. "cannot print money out of thin air"
  179. "Why that matters? Because blockchain not only cheaper for them, it'll be cheaper for you and everyone as well."
  180. "If you are in this to get rich in Fiat then no. But if you are in this to protect your wealth once the current monetary system collapse then you are protected and you'll be the new rich."
  181. "Theres the 1% and then theres the 99%. You want to be with the rest thats fine. Being different and brave is far more rewarding. No matter your background or education."
  182. "NO COINERS will believe anything they are fed by fake news and paid media."
  183. "I know that feeling (like people looking at you as in seeing a celebrity and then asking things they don't believe until their impressed)."
  184. "I literally walk round everyday looking at other people wondering why they even bother to live if they don't have Bitcoin in their lives."
  185. "I think bitcoin may very well be the best form of money we’ve ever seen in the history of civilization."
  186. "I think Bitcoin will do for mankind what the sun did for life on earth."
  187. "I think the constant scams and illegal activities only show the viability of bitcoin."
  188. "I think we're sitting on the verge of exponential interest in the currency."
  189. "I'm not using hyperbole when I say Satoshi found the elusive key to World Peace."
  190. "If Jesus ever comes back you know he's gonna be using Bitcoin"
  191. "If this idea was implemented with The Blockchain™, it would be completely flawless! Flawless I tell you!"
  192. "If you're the minimum wage guy type, now is a great time to skip food and go full ramadan in order to buy bitcoin instead."
  193. "In a world slipping more and more into chaos and uncertainty, Bitcoin seems to me like the last solid rock defeating all the attacks."
  194. "In this moment, I am euphoric. Not because of any filthy statist's blessing, but because I am enlightened by own intelligence."
  195. "Is Bitcoin at this point, with all the potential that opens up, the most undervalued asset ever?"
  196. "It won't be long until bitcoin is an everyday household term."
  197. "It's the USD that is volatile. Bitcoin is the real neutral currency."
  198. "Just like the early Internet!"
  199. "Just like the Trojan Horse of old, Bitcoin will reveal its full power and nature"
  200. "Ladies if your man doesnt have some bitcoin then he cant handle anything and has no danger sex appeal. He isnt edgy"
  201. "let me be the first to say if you dont have bitcoin you are a pussy and cant really purchase anything worldwide. You have no global reach"
  202. "My conclusion is that I see this a a very good thing for bitcoin and for users"
  203. "No one would do such a thing; it'd be against their self interests."
  204. "Ooh lala, good job on bashing Bitcoin. How to disrespect a great innovation."
  205. "Realistically I think Bitcoin will replace the dollar in the next 10-15 years."
  206. "Seperation of money and state -> states become obsolete -> world peace."
  207. "Some striking similarities between Bitcoin and God"
  208. "THANK YOU. Better for this child to be strangled in its crib as a true weapon for crypto-anarchists than for it to be wielded by toxic individuals who distort the technology and surrender it to government and corporate powers."
  209. "The Blockchain is more encompassing than the internet and is the next phase in human evolution. To avoid its significance is complete ignorance."
  210. "The bull run should begin any day now."
  211. "The free market doesn't permit fraud and theft."
  212. "The free market will clear away the bad actors."
  213. "The only regulation we need is the blockchain."
  214. "We are not your slaves! We are free bodies who will swallow you and puke you out in disgust. Welcome to liberty land or as that genius called it: Bitcoin."
  215. "We do not need the bankers for Satoshi is our saviour!"
  216. "We have never seen something so perfect"
  217. "We must bring freedom and crypto to the masses, to the common man who does not know how to fight for himself."
  218. "We verified that against the blockchain."
  219. "we will see a Rennaisnce over the next few decades, all thanks to Bitcoin."
  220. "Well, since 2006, there has been a infinite% increase in price, so..."
  221. "What doesn't kill cryptocurrency makes it stronger."
  222. "When Bitcoin awake in normally people (real people) ... you will have this result : No War. No Tax. No QE. No Bank."
  223. "When I see news that the price of bitcoin has tanked (and thus the market, more or less) I actually, for-real, have the gut reaction "oh that’s cool, I’ll be buying cheap this week". I never knew I could be so rational."
  224. "Where is your sense of adventure? Bitcoin is the future. Set aside your fears and leave easier at the doorstep."
  225. "Yes Bitcoin will cause the greatest redistribution of wealth this planet has ever seen. FACT from the future."
  226. "You are the true Bitcoin pioneers and with your help we have imprinted Bitcoin in the Canadian conscience."
  227. "You ever try LSD? Perhaps it would help you break free from the box of state-formed thinking you have limited yourself..."
  228. "Your phone or refrigerator might be on the blockchain one day."
  229. The banks can print money whenever they way, out of thin air, so why can't crypto do the same ???
  230. Central Banks can print money whenever they way, out of thin air, without any consequences or accounting, so why can't crypto do the same ???
  231. It's impossible to hide illegal, unsavory material on the blockchain
  232. It's impossible to hide child pornography on the blockchain
  233. Fungible
  234. All Bitccoins are the same, 100% identical, one Bitcoin cannot be distinguished from any other Bitcoin.
  235. The price of Bitcoin can only go up.
  236. "Bubbles are mathematically impossible in this new paradigm. So are corrections and all else", John McAfee, 7 Dec 2017 @ 5:09 PM,https://mobile.twitter.com/officialmcafee/status/938938539282190337
  237. Scarcity
  238. The price of Bitcoin can only go up because of scarcity / 21 million coin limit. (Bitcoin is open source, anyone can create thir own copy, and there are more than 2,000+ Bitcoin copies / clones out there already).
  239. immune to government regulation
  240. "a world-changing technology"
  241. "a long-term store of value, like gold or silver"
  242. "To Complex to Be Audited."
  243. "Old Auditing rules do not apply to Blockchain."
  244. "Old Auditing rules do not apply to Cryptocurrency."
  245. "Why Bitcoin has Value: SCARCITY.", PlanB, Coin Shill, 22-Mar-2019, https://medium.com/@100trillionUSD/modeling-bitcoins-value-with-scarcity-91fa0fc03e25
  246. "Bitcoin is the first scarce digital object the world has ever seen, it is scarce like silver & gold, and can be sent over the internet, radio, satellite etc.", PlanB, Coin Shill, 22-Mar-2019, https://medium.com/@100trillionUSD/modeling-bitcoins-value-with-scarcity-91fa0fc03e25
  247. "Surely this digital scarcity has value.", PlanB, Coin Shill, 22-Mar-2019, https://medium.com/@100trillionUSD/modeling-bitcoins-value-with-scarcity-91fa0fc03e25
  248. Bitcoin now at $16,600.00. Those of you in the old school who believe this is a bubble simply have not understood the new mathematics of the Blockchain, or you did not cared enough to try. Bubbles are mathematically impossible in this new paradigm. So are corrections and all else", John McAfee, 7 Dec 2017 @ 5:09 PM,https://mobile.twitter.com/officialmcafee/status/938938539282190337
  249. "May 2018 will be the last time we ever see $bitcoin under $10,000", Charlie Shrem, bitcoin advocate and convicted felon, 11:31 AM 3-May-2018, https://twitter.com/CharlieShrem/status/992109375555858433
  250. "Last dip ever.", AngeloBTC, 14 Oct 2018, https://mobile.twitter.com/AngeloBTC/status/1051710824388030464/photo/1
  251. "Bitcoin May Have Just Experienced its Final Shakeout Before a Big Rally", Joseph Young, coin shill, October 15, 2018 22:30 CET, https://www.ccn.com/bitcoin-may-have-just-experienced-its-final-shakeout-before-a-big-rally/
  252. Bitcoin would be a buy if the price fell under $5,000., Mohamed El-Erian, chief economic advisor at Allianz, 29-Jun-2018, https://www.ccn.com/bitcoin-a-buy-below-5000-says-allianz-chief-economic-adviso
  253. 2013-11-27: ""What is a Citadel?" you might wonder. Well, by the time Bitcoin became worth 1,000 dollar [27-Nov-2013], services began to emerge for the "Bitcoin rich" to protect themselves as well as their wealth. It started with expensive safes, then began to include bodyguards, and today, "earlies" (our term for early adapters), as well as those rich whose wealth survived the "transition" live in isolated gated cities called Citadels, where most work is automated. Most such Citadels are born out of the fortification used to protect places where Bitcoin mining machines are located. The company known as ASICminer to you is known to me as a city where Mr. Friedman rules as a king.", u/Luka_Magnotta, aka time traveler from the future, 31-Aug-2013, https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/1lfobc/i_am_a_timetraveler_from_the_future_here_to_beg/
  254. 2018-02: Bitcoin price to hit $27,000 by February 2018, Trace Mayer, host of the Bitcoin Knowledge Podcast, and self-proclaimed entrepreneur, investor, journalist, monetary scientist and ardent defender, Link #1: https://mobile.twitter.com/TraceMayestatus/917260836070154240/photo/1, Link #2: https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/
  255. 2018-06: "Bitcoin will surpass $15,000 in June [2018]." John McAfee, May 25, 2018, https://bitcoinist.com/john-mcafee-says-bitcoin-will-surpass-15000-in-june/
  256. 2018-07: Bitcoin will be $28,000 by mid-2018, Ronnie Moas, Wall Street analyst and founder of Standpoint Research, http://helpfordream.com/2018/12/23/5-bitcoin-price-predictions-gone-wrong/.
  257. 2018-12: Bitcoin to reach a price of between 40,000 and 110,000 US dollars by the end of the 2017 bull run ... sometime before 2019, Masterluc, 26-May-2017, an anonymous "legendary" Bitcoin trader, Link #1: https://www.tradingview.com/chart/BTCUSD/YRZvdurN-The-target-of-current-bubble-lays-between-40k-and-110k/, Link #2: https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/
  258. 2018-12: "There is no reason why we couldn’t see Bitcoin pushing $50,000 by December [2018]", Thomas Glucksmann, head of APAC business at Gatecoin, Link #1: https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/
  259. 2018-12: Listen up you giggling cunts... who wants some?...you? you want some?...huh? Do ya? Here's the deal you fuckin Nerds - Butts are gonna be at 30 grand or more by next Christmas [2018] - If they aren't I will publicly administer an electronic dick sucking to every shill on this site and disappear forever - Until then, no more bans or shadow bans - Do we have a deal? If Butts are over 50 grand me and Lammy get to be mods. Deal? Your ole pal - "Skully" u/10GDeathBoner, 3-Feb-2018 https://www.reddit.com/Buttcoin/comments/7ut1ut/listen_up_you_giggling_cunts_who_wants_someyou/
  260. 2018-12: 1 bitcoin = 1 Lambo. Remind me on Christmas eve [2018] u/10GDeathBoner, 3-Feb-2018, https://www.reddit.com/Buttcoin/comments/7ut1ut/listen_up_you_giggling_cunts_who_wants_someyou/dtn2pna
  261. 2018-12: Been in BTC since 2014 and experienced many "deaths" of BTC... this too shall pass... $10k end of the year. [2018] u/Exxe2502, 30-Jun-2018 https://reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/8uur27/_/e1ioi5b/?context=1
  262. 2018-12: "Yale Alumni prediction - 30 Grand by Christmas [2018] - and you my friend... you will be the one eating Mcafee's dick in 2020. :) -:", u/SirNakamoto, 15-Jun-2018, https://www.reddit.com/Buttcoin/comments/8r0tyh/fdic_agrees_to_cover_bitcoin_losses_in_event_of/e0nzxq7
  263. 2018-12: "Impossible For Bitcoin Not to Hit $10,000 by This Year (2018)", Mike Novogratz, a former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. partner, ex-hedge fund manager of the Fortress Investment Group and a longstanding advocate of cryptocurrency, 22-Sep-2018, https://www.newsbtc.com/2018/09/22/billionaire-novogratz-impossible-for-bitcoin-not-to-hit-10000-by-this-yea
  264. 2018-12: "[Bitcoin] between $13,800 and $14,800 [by end of 2018]", Fundstrat's Tom Lee, 13-Dec-2018, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/12/13/wall-streets-bitcoin-bull-tom-lee-we-are-tired-of-people-asking-us-about-target-prices.html
  265. 2018-12: "Bitcoin is going to be $15k-$20k by the end of the year (2018)", Didi Taihuttu, 1-Nov-2018, https://www.wsj.com/video/series/moving-upstream/the-bitcoin-gamble/85E3A4A7-C777-4827-9A3F-B387F2AB7654
  266. 2018-12: 2018 bitcoin price prediction reduced to $15,000 [was $25,000], Fundstrat's Tom Lee, 16-Nov-2018, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/11/16/wall-streets-crypto-bull-tom-lee-slashes-year-end-forecast-by-10000.html
  267. 2018-12: "I want to be clear, bitcoin is going to $25,000 by year end (2018)", Fundstrat's Tom Lee, 5-Jul-2018, https://www.cnbc.com/video/2018/07/05/tom-lee-i-want-to-be-clear-bitcoin-is-going-to-25000-by-year-end.html
  268. 2018-12: "Bitcoin could be at $40,000 by the end of 2018, it really easily could", Mike Novogratz, a former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. partner, ex-hedge fund manager of the Fortress Investment Group and a longstanding advocate of cryptocurrency, 21-Sep-2018, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6lC1anDg2KU
  269. 2018-12: "Bitcoin will be priced around $50,000 by the end of the year (2018)", Bitcoin bull Arthur Hayes, co-founder and CEO of BitMEX, 29-Jun-2018, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/06/29/bitcoin-will-reach-50000-in-2018-says-founder-of-bitcoin-exchange.html
  270. 2018-12: "Bitcoin could definitely see $50,000 in 2018", Jeet Singh, cryptocurrency portfolio manager, speaking in January 2018 at the World Economic Forum in Davos, https://www.dcforecasts.com/new-prediction-says-bitcoin-hit-50000-2018/
  271. 2018-12: "Bitcoin will hit $100,000 this year (2018)", Kay Van-Petersen, an analyst at Saxo Bank, 17-Jan-2018, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/01/16/bitcoin-headed-to-100000-in-2018-analyst-who-forecast-2017-price-move.html
  272. 2018-12: "Bitcoin price to surpass the $100,000 mark by the end of 2018", Tone Vays, 21-Sep-2017, https://www.ccn.com/prominent-bitcoin-trader-price-is-heading-towards-100000-in-2018/
  273. 2018-12: "Bitcoin’s Price Will Surpass the $100,000 Mark by the End of 2018", Anonymous ("author" obviously too embarrassed to put his name to such bullshit "articles"), Oct-2018, https://investingpr.com/bitcoin-price-predictions-for-2018/
  274. 2018-12: "Our [2018] year-end bitcoin target is $7700.", James Stefurak, Founder at Monarch Research. See article: "Experts Forecast Bitcoin will rise by 2019", REF: https://hackernoon.com/experts-forecast-bitcoin-will-rise-by-2019-f4af8807036b?gi=dfea3c30d6d8
  275. 2018-12: "... we’ll see the price rally reaching its all-time of high of around $20K before the end of 2018", Khaled Khorshid, Co-Founder at Treon ICO. See article: "Experts Forecast Bitcoin will rise by 2019", REF: https://hackernoon.com/experts-forecast-bitcoin-will-rise-by-2019-f4af8807036b?gi=dfea3c30d6d8
  276. 2018-12: Bitcoin will end 2018 at the price point of $50,000, Ran Neuner, host of CNBC’s show Cryptotrader and the 28th most influential Blockchain insider according to Richtopia,https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/
  277. Plus a whole host of wrong 2019 predictions (could not be included here because of post character limit issues), so please see my earlier post from 4 days ago: Ummm, remember those "Expert" Bitcoin Price Predictions for 2019 ..... ohhhhh dear ....., https://www.reddit.com/Buttcoin/comments/eiqhq3/ummm_remember_those_expert_bitcoin_price/
.
But it's NOT all bad news, some claims and promises are yet to be determined:
  1. Never going below $3K again
  2. Never going below $2K again
  3. Never going below $1K again
  4. Any others ? Please let me know.
submitted by Crypto_To_The_Core to Buttcoin [link] [comments]

Brief guide to calculating your capital gains and losses.

Hey all - full disclosure, I work for Bitcoin.Tax , which is the source of this information. Since Tax Day in Canada is approaching, I wrote up a quick guide to calculating your capital gains from trading/utilizing/selling crypto. We've been in the business of crypto taxation a long time, and we've been supporting Canadian users since 2014.
The full article has information about using Bitcoin.Tax to calculate your capital gains/losses, if anyone is looking for a software to use. Otherwise, feel free to utilize the information below to understand crypto capital gains a bit better. I know there are a lot of knowledgeable people here, so if I've missed the mark on anything, let me know (all info was sourced from official material).
Full Article Link
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In Canada, Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are considered commodities by The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). The CRA treats cryptocurrency trades as barter transactions, which makes them subject to the income tax.
The gains and losses from these trades must be reported when filing your taxes, where most individuals would report these figures on their Schedule C. If your cryptocurrency trading is considered a "business", it may be taxed as income. It's always best to confer with a tax professional to determine what your trading constitutes.
Official information about capital gains taxation can be found on the Government of Canada's Website.
The normal deadline for tax reporting in Canada is April 30.

Taxable Events

A taxable event refers to any type of cryptocurrency transaction that results in a capital gain.
Here are the primary ways in which your cryptocurrency could result in a capital gain:
Variations of these events can also result in a taxable event occurring (i.e., trading with coins acquired from a fork/split or buying something with crypto that you received for services rendered).
Buying a cryptocurrency with fiat is not, in itself, a taxable event. A taxable event occurs once the crypto is disposed.

Capital Gains = Proceeds — ACB - Fees
ACB refers to "Adjusted Cost Basis", which is how much your coin cost to acquire, plus any expenses associated with it. Adjusted Cost Basis averages together all of your acquisition costs of a specific coin in order to calculate a cost basis.
For example, if you buy 1 BTC for $3,000, 1 BTC for $5,000, and 1 BTC for $10,000, your adjusted cost basis for your BTC would be $6,000. If there were fees associated with those buys, they would also be added to the cost basis.
Proceeds are determined by the value of the crypto, service, or fiat you received, at the time of the coin's disposition. Fees refers to amounts incurred to sell your coin.
Your capital gain or loss on crypto is determined by taking the proceeds from the disposed (i.e., traded or sold) coin and subtracting the coin's adjusted cost basis.
For example, if you acquired 1 BTC for $5,000, plus paid a fee of $100, the adjusted cost basis of your 1 BTC would be $5,100. If you later sold that 1 BTC for $6,000, you would realize a capital gain of $900 ($6,000 - $5,100).
If you did one or two trades throughout the year, it's not too difficult to determine how much of a capital gain has been realized. However, most people have a lot more than one or two trades, which makes manually calculating your gains extremely difficult.

Mining Crypto

The tax treatment for mining cryptocurrency is established on a case by case basis. If the mining being done constitutes a "business activity", it is taxed as income. If it constitutes a hobby, it is taxed differently. It is best to consult with a tax professional to assess whether your mining constitutes a business activity or a hobby.

Superficial Losses

If you realize a capital loss when trading or selling capital property, you can use it to offset capital gains you have elsewhere to lower your taxes. To deter abuse of this rule, the CRA enforces a superficial loss rule on capital losses. If you have a superficial loss, it cannot be used as a deduction against your taxable income.
A superficial loss occurs when you dispose of a cryptocurrency for a loss and then you (or, even someone affiliated with you, like a spouse or a dependent) buys the same cryptocurrency in the surrounding 61 day period (30 days before AND 30 days after the sale).
For example, let's say you have 2 BTC, and then you sell 1 of those BTC at a loss. If that 1 BTC was purchased 30 days prior to the sale, the loss would be superficial. Or, if after selling the 1 BTC, you bought another BTC within 30 days, the loss would also be considered superficial.

Capital Gain Rates

For individuals, the amount of capital gains tax owed is 50% of your capital gains, based off the Inclusion Rate. If your primary source of income is from trading crypto, your gains may subject to a different rate - it is best to consult with a tax professional if you are unsure.

Foreign Property Reporting

Cryptocurrency likely falls under the CRA reporting requirements for "specified foreign property". Given this, if the cost of the cryptocurrency exceeds $100,000 anytime throughout the year, it needs to be reported on form T1135.
This post is for informational purposes only and not intended as tax or financial advice. Please speak with your own tax professional on how you should treat the taxation of your own cryptocurrencies given your own circumstances.
submitted by Sal-BitcoinTax to BitcoinCA [link] [comments]

My Crypto taxes in Germany - 2017(18), actual status

Ola ppl,
yesterday I finally had my "date" with my official tax accountant from a major German tax union in Hessen. He does all my official tax work and is legally responsible for my tax return. Since I had some trades in 2017 with BTC, (and a lot in this year!), I was looking forward to this meeting to get all my crypto-tax questions cleared.
The state is as follows:
The German Finanzamt doesn't know how to tax crypto, again. There was a EU judgement (case „Hedqvist“, C-264/14) in 2015 which defines Bitcoin and Crypto as currency and therefore can’t be taxed. This view has also been strengthened by the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) in this year (2018) which has the same view on Crypto. This resulted in the "mess" that we are in (for us in Crypto in Germany it is great actually) tax regarding.
To sum it up, this was told to me from my Tax-man, for a private person doing private trades:
  1. I dont need to report anything Crypto related. Not my BTC buys, not my binance trades, no airdrops, no mining, no passive income from holding, nothing.
  2. The German Finanzamt simply doesnt care for cryptos now, the volume and tax amounts are insignificant and it is now defined as currency-type again. If you are not dealing with SIGNIFICANT amounts of €-value in Cryptos, nobody will even ask you about anything. If you are dealing whit amounts which raises the questions of the "Finanzamt" (hence "Significant"), it is about money laundering and the likes of.
  3. The "Finanzamt" has, for now, no LEGAL way of requesting/tracking trades on crypto-exchanges (except for cases when they go to court), since exchanges are not official banks/financial institutions, they have no legal authority over them. In turn, Crypto exchanges have no official/standardized way of reporting taxable trades/buys/etc... like financial institutions have. No one is going to manually track and calculate your trades unless they are said to do it by court (again, example money laundering and such cases)
  4. I can and should keep a record of my trades IF the legal situation changes. It is highly unlikely, but you never know.
  5. I should never invest more than I can afford, and don’t put everything in Crypto
Cheers
tl;dr: For now, in Germany are NO TAXES to pay on anything crypto related. Cryptos are defined similar to currency and not taxed.
EDIT: I see this is blowing up, I will try to directly talk to the "Finanzamt" about this since the opinions and experiences range from: " You are fucked and going to jail" to "Great, thats it".
EDIT 2: German "Finanzamt" doesnt give statments regarding procedures, I shall contact a legal tax adviser or preferably a union. You cant make that shit up. Back to square 1, will make a second meeting with a different adviser to check it explicitly on that matter. What a legal swamp....
submitted by dmx442 to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

60 DoD Week 6: Finances

60 DoD Week 6: Finances
By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail. – Ben Franklin
Having a financial plan is vitally important for a number of reasons. What do you think the greatest stressor in relationships is? The lack of sex your wife is giving you? Close one. It’s money, although your shaved balls might think otherwise.
So don’t you think having a plan is critical to fixing your well-being? You have a MAP to get in shape. Why don’t you have a plan for your finances.
This post might better well be served in personal finance, but screw it. I’m going to town. For the folks overseas, some of this content might be US-specific.
On Net Worth
In order to calculate your net worth, you need to take your assets, such as your checking account, savings, house, etc, and subtract your liabilities, your mortgage, credit card debts, and loans, and you’ll get your net worth.
This is a good time to be spreadsheet guy. But instead of counting how many ladies you are seeing or counting how many times you had sex, use Excel for its intended purpose.
Start calculating it annually, quarterly, monthly. Whatever frequency you feel like you need to get a handle on where your net worth is going. For myself, I do this quarterly, though I have my finger on the pulse pretty frequently.
On Budget
You want to get ahead? You have to operate on a budget. Know what you are spending, what you are saving, and where your money is going.
For me, I’ve got it set where it takes me about 7 minutes to log into the various accounts, take certain numbers like food spend and so forth, and plug those numbers into the Excel boxes. Plugging them in allows me to quickly project the next three months spend and where I’ll be. Some numbers are easy to find, like the fixed costs of mortgage and student loans. Some numbers you have to estimate or look up, like variable food costs and gas/electric. I do this about once a month. It doesn’t take long at all – just making sure I have good cash flow and sticking to my budget.
Take the time to do a detailed line item comparison. You should know exactly how much is going where. The real key though is STICKING TO YOUR BUDGET. You have to keep to it in order to meet your goals.
On Financial Literacy
It’s key to have a good understanding on financial literacy. You have to understand things such as what is the market, what is a stock, what is a bond, what is a dividend, what is a mutual fund, and so forth. You have to know what you are investing in. Take your financial knowledge and move it up. There are literally tons of free information out there. Start going to town. And for the advanced players, go learn the ins and outs of your brokerage firm’s website and trading platform – I mean really learn it, not just “Oh, here’s how I do a buy order on a stock.” Learn how to screen for stocks, mutual funds, and bonds effectively.
Side note – If you are in the US, I recommend joining AAII. I have gotten a great deal of value out of my membership to them. A number of HNW individuals I know recommended it to me, though I had joined and got the lifetime membership before I met them.
On Bogleheads
Personally, I’m a Boglehead. Jack Bogle, man, he was the Chad of passive investing. I believe that passive investing (indexing) long term beats active investing long term. So does Warren Buffet. All my research agrees with this from a long term standpoint.
I’m also a fan of creating an Investment Policy Statement
Boglehead Resources
https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Bogleheads%C2%AE_investment_philosophy
https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/What_the_experts_say_about_investing
https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/The_twelve_pillars_of_wisdom / https://web.archive.org/web/20070304091730/http://www.vanguard.com/bogle_site/april272001.html
https://studentloanhero.com/featured/bogleheads-invest/
https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/index.php
I would highly encourage you to review these links and check out their philosophy on investing.
On Being a Contrarian
I’m also a fan of being a contrarian. Be greedy when others are fearful, and fearful when others are greedy. You see it with the Bitcoin bubble. You see it when the stock market goes up and down. Oh no, the market is going down… whatever shall we do?!? You stick to your guns. I’m not saying go catch a falling knife. I’m saying that you stick to your plan. There is opportunity when people are fearful, and caution is warranted when people are being greedy. You have to evaluate where we are in the economic cycle as well.
On a Cup of Starbucks and Retirement
You might have seen the example where someone buys a cup of Starbucks every day and then finds out that if they took that money and invested it toward their retirement, over the span of say 30 years they’ll have like an extra 200k. I have two comments on this. First, be frugal, but don’t deny yourself. Don’t let frugality control you. Second, don’t just focus on controlling the little changes like saving a cup of Starbucks every week, focus on the BIG areas. Focus on getting a new job that pays you an extra 40k per year. Focus on saving 100 bucks off your cable (1200 bucks saved per year). Focus on lowering your taxes. What I’m saying is focus on not just the small areas, but also make the bigger impact areas a higher priority. And stop drinking so much Starbucks – make it yourself. Grind the beans, for crying out loud.
On Automating
Automate your finances. Make it EASY for yourself to save money. Set up your automatic bill payments for your credit card, loans, mortgage, and bills. Take advantage of the modern tools nowadays for app/camera based check deposits. Have money taken out of your paycheck before you get it, whether it is for retirement or into a separate savings account, so you can accumulate a rainy day fund. I’ve automated as much as I can, with direct withdrawals taken out for mortgage, credit card payments, gas and electric, and for the other areas like telephone those are automatically paid from the credit card, which then is automatically paid from the checking account. Automating saves time, which is a critical resource.
On Buying a Car
Here’s your resources:
https://www.reddit.com/askcarsales/wiki/index
https://www.reddit.com/askcarsales/comments/19niva/car_buying_faqs/
https://www.reddit.com/askcarsales/comments/4j2okj/what_to_expect_from_your_dealership_visit/
https://www.reddit.com/askcarsales/comments/613jvn/askcarsales_faq_updated_march_2017/
http://fightingchance.com/ - I used these for private market research, and was worth every penny.
There’s a lot more here, but this should get you through the basics. Simply, knowledge is power. The more you know, the more power you have. If you don’t know every single line item that is going into your purchase, whether it is an accessory, taxes, that stupid coating that they try to sell you for $1000 but it’s really just worth $100, etc., then you’re not ready, and you’re more likely to be fleeced.
Just even walking into the dealership and observing other customers and their interactions with the car salesman, it’s like watching sheep. Don’t be a sheep. Be prepared. And be prepared to walk too. Cars are a commodity. You can buy the same car someplace else cheaper. Remember this – cars are a commodity, and there’s lots of dealers out there.
Side note – “But Steel, what about TrueCar? That seems awesome. I’ll just go in, get my TrueCaCostco/KBB/XXX price and I won’t even have to do anything to get a great price.” Let me tell you this. Dealers would be HAPPY to sell you at the TrueCar price all day long. With proper preparation, you can negotiate a far better deal. Last time when preparing, I had a binder. That binder saved me over 9k. Cost me 5 bucks at the local pharmacy. Printed out all my info, was prepared as all get out, and had a prepared offer ready to go (I used my own sheet, not theirs). Be prepared, that’s what I’m saying. And don’t fall for the four square technique. I just chuckled at the different dealerships at how they try to pull that one. Hell, I went through YouTube and viewed a couple of videos on how car salesmen sell, so I had an understanding of their mentality and what they do. Be prepared.
Generally, there are five major parts for buying a car: Trading in your current car, buying your new car, buying options on a car (like that fancy heated steering-wheel), extended warranty, and financing. You should own every single area of this. As an example, when you are talking about trading in your current car, you should ALREADY have your price quote from CarMax in hand, as well as other offers from other dealers. You should know what your car is worth if it were to be sold (remember supply and demand – what is it really worth: what someone will buy it for). You should already have the KBB and Edmunds value of your used car. For your new car, you should have a breakdown of every single thing on it, including options, doc fees and ERT. For your fancy accessories, you should have the MSRP of these accessories, the actual cost of them buying (wholesale parts warehouse), and an estimate in your head on labor costs (cause parts don’t get installed by themselves). For your extended warranty, I would just say that there is a reason why this is one of the most profitable areas of a car dealership. If you simply must have an extended warranty for peace of mind, go find a wholesale warranty. Do your research. Don’t buy from the dealership. Most cars nowadays anyway are built quite well with high standards of quality control, so they’re not failing like they used to. On financing, make sure you set up your own financing before you walk in. It makes life much easier, as the car dealers get money on financing as well. If the dealership can beat your credit union, more power to them. It’s powerful as all get out when you walk in with a prewritten cashier’s check at a super low interest rate and you’re ready when they start asking you how you are going to pay for the car. “Well, I am preapproved for x amount (aka the full amount of the car), but I’d like to see what specials and discounts you have.”
It’s all about how much money you can save in each one of these areas.
Granted if you’re BETA BUCKS and your time is worth more than doing a bit of research, that’s fair. Some folk just walk in and buy a car right there with a minimum of haggling. That’s how much their time is worth to them, and I know a few people who are like this. I’m merely presenting an alternate approach. To me, it was worth the time to save more than a few thousands.
On Buying a House
For many people, a house is the largest purchase that they make in their lifetime. Many of you have already bought houses, so I won’t go into this in detail, but again, from The Millionaire Next Door – “If you’re not yet wealthy, but want to be someday, never purchase a home that requires a mortgage that is more than twice your household’s annual realized income.”
I see a lot of you going “Shit” after reading that.
On a Side Hustle
I didn’t even have to write anything, u/red-sfpplus already wrote an excellent post on this topic - https://www.reddit.com/marriedredpill/comments/7i7x4q/the_financial_hustle/
Learn from his example. And then buy the man a drink.
On What to Do First
"Successful Investing takes time, discipline and patience. No matter how great the talent or effort, some things just take time: You can't produce a baby in one month by getting nine women pregnant." - Warren Buffett
First of all, take stock of where you are. Figure out your net worth, and what you have and what you owe (and interest rates). I would say the first thing to do is to have a three to six month emergency fund. This can be done in conjunction with getting rid of high interest debt (such as credit card debt), however if and when you have an emergency, you’re going to need to tap into something.
Start your budgeting process. Know where your money is going. Fix it.
Most people don’t even have a thousand dollars in savings. Don’t be like that.
I would also note that the Personal Finance subreddit has this already diagrammed out in a flowchart in their wiki - https://i.imgur.com/lSoUQr2.png
On Giving Back
So you give back, right. Of course you do. But what I suggest is potentially setting up a charitable fund, so that you can maximize your charitable deduction annually. You can give a larger sum one year, and then less/none the following year – and maximize your deduction the first year. Something to consider. Plus then your charitable fund is invested, will grow with the market (remember you need a plan and asset allocation here as well), and the growth can be given to the charity as well, tax free. I’d recommend Vanguard, but really there are a number of places that do this.
On Habits of Millionaires
From the book The Millionaire Next Door, here are the characteristics of millionaires:
• They live well below their means
• They allocate their time, energy, and money efficiently, in ways conducive to building wealth.
• They believe that financial independence is more important than displaying high social status
• Their parents did not provide economic outpatient care.
• Their adult children are economically self-sufficient.
• They are proficient in targeting market opportunities.
• They chose the right occupation.
On Building Wealth
You want to build wealth? Don’t have a high consumption lifestyle! Think for a moment. How much money do you think it takes to maintain an upper-middle class lifestyle vs. how much money do you think it takes to maintain a middle-class/blue collar lifestyle? Bespoke suits. Luxury cars. Bigger house. More property taxes. And so forth. Think of all the stuff you have to purchase to keep up with the Joneses. Cost of cleaning. Cost of buying furniture for that fancy house. Etc.
“But Steel, I don’t care about the Joneses.” Sure you don’t. But your wife does. Watching that HGTV, picking out the stupid pillows that breed like rabbits in your house when you’re not looking. There’s something about a house that factors into the Female Social Matrix.
Frugality is the name of the game. Frugal being “behavior characterized by or reflecting economy in the use of resources.”
Don’t be wasteful. Don’t have a lifestyle marked by lavish spending and hyper consumption. You want to build wealth? Be frugal.
Most people will not become wealthy in one generation if they are married to people who are wasteful. You can’t accumulate wealth if one of you is a hyperconsumer.
On Offence vs. Defense
So you’re not beta bucks, you’re BETA BUCKS! You make it rain! Good for you. You play great offence. But how’s your defense? How’s your wealth accumulation? Are you spending like there’s no tomorrow? If you want to win the game, you have to play great offence AND defense.
Here’s some questions for you:
• Do you operate on an annual budget?
• Do you know how much you spend each year for food, clothing, and shelter?
• Do you have a clearly defined set of daily, weekly, monthly, annual, and lifetime goals?
• Do you spend a lot of time planning your financial future?
To build wealth, minimize your realized (taxable) income, and maximize your unrealized income (wealth/capital appreciation without a cash flow).
How do you become financially independent? You have to plan, and you have to sacrifice. You sacrifice today for financial independence tomorrow.
On Your Wife & Buy-In
As part of your plan and budgeting, once you have it all set, get buy-in from your wife. But do this not like you are seeking approval from mommy (aka you validation whore you), but matter of factly here is the plan, we are budgeting x amount for these areas. Here is our plan. Set out a vision.
On Financial Vision
Read it and weep - https://www.reddit.com/marriedredpill/comments/3fecgi/first_budget_discussion_leads_to_minor_meltdown/ctnya77/
“One rarely talked-about element of Married Game is a subtle thing known as Vision. Most husbands don’t appreciate what a strong DHV possessing Vision is, and they proceed unaware of the power it can add to their relationship. Most husbands do this because they don’t understand Vision, what it is and how it is manifested, much less the subtle but important role it holds. Let me explain: once upon a time I was working for a personnel agency, and one of my jobs was coaching our people on interviewing techniques. I learned a lot about the process as a result, from both the interviewer and the interviewee side. When it came to my clients who wanted high-quality employees with good technical skills – real talent – I learned the sorts of things that such high-demand technical people wanted in a company. Money, of course, and security and benefits. But beyond that gifted employees want to work for a company with a history, a good culture, and (most importantly) a Vision.
What is Vision? In this context Vision is a manifested idea of the future. Everyone wants to work for a company that’s changing the world and is doing so in a positive, pro-active way. No one wants to work for the company that’s floundering, desperate just to meet its next quarter’s goals. Vision is a generally-stated plan-of-action toward a distant but achievable goal, presented in an enticing enough manner to inspire. It’s short on details and long on generalizations. It’s reflective of inner beliefs, values, and judgments, an indication of character, foresight, and initiative. It should be bold, meaningful, and challenging.”
Now, this quote above is excellent. You need a vision for your life, but you also need a vision for your finances. What would your financial vision be? What does it look like to you? Create it, and then be ready to share that with your family.
On Love of Money
Remember folks, money itself is not the root of all evil. It’s the LOVE of money that causes the problem. When you are so driven to be a better beta bucks to get that coin, and start neglecting yourself, your relationships, etc… you’ve got problems. Money is just a tool in the toolbox. Use it, don’t let it use you. Don’t become a slave to money. Your life doesn’t consist of how many toys you have. And you can’t take it with you when you go.
On Insurance, or Lack Thereof
Would it surprise you to know that most people are underinsured? Make sure that you have enough of the key five types of insurance: health, car, homeowners/renters, life, and disability. Preparing yourself for these situations can save you a lot of pain in the future. Also, make sure you get enough umbrella insurance. Typically they say have enough umbrella insurance to cover your net worth, but I recommend getting a bit more.
A quick note, practically, do not get whole life insurance. Get term insurance, and invest the difference in cost between whole life and term. You’ll be much better off. And yes, this is for 99.9% of situations. The remaining .1% of situations are when someone is really wealthy and there are estate and tax considerations. Aka for most of us, don’t worry about it.
And take care of your health, so you don’t get fat when you are older and have related medical problems. Put. The. Fork. Down.
On Assets and Liabilities, Rich Dad Poor Dad Edition
A number of you have read Rich Dad Poor Dad, and there’s controversy in it. I disagree with a number of items in there, but there is an interesting point in there about how he views assets and liabilities:
“You must know the difference between an asset and a liability, and buy assets. If you want to be rich, this is all you need to know. It is Rule No. 1. It is the only rule. This may sound absurdly simple, but most people have no idea how profound this rule is. Most people struggle financially because they do not know the difference between an asset and a liability.”
He has a simple, non-accounting definition - “An asset is something that puts money in my pocket. A liability is something that takes money out of my pocket.”
Buy assets. I like it. What is out there that you can buy that puts money in your pocket. Stocks. Bonds. Mutual Funds. Real Estate that produces Income. There are a ton of items.
You should also think about getting rid of your liabilities… the giant boat, the private jet, the cluster B horrible sex-depriving wife (you know who you are)… you get the idea.
On Disaster Recovery and Information Security
What were to happen if you were to croak, or your only laptop with all your financial data was stolen or destroyed in a fire along with all your financial papers (see, you should have gotten that fireproof safe)? Would you have a plan on what to do? Would your spouse? Your kids? I would suggest making a backup of your finances, statements, tax returns, and other important papers, and put that on an encrypted USB key with a password that you and your wife knows, and then storing that someplace secure. Note that you can do fancy stuff like cloud storage, and so forth – but you need to have a plan for the worst case scenario.
Additionally, make sure that you use two-factor authentication when you log into your banking accounts (if they have it), as well as don’t repeat your passwords for your financial accounts.
I would even suggest having a separate secured email for your banking accounts, and another one for your personal accounts that get those damn spam emails all the time.
Don’t be stupid with your financial accounts. Using the same password is stupid. Yeah, I’m talking to you.
On Practical Advice
Do get rid of high interest credit cards. If you’ve got a balance on your 29.99% APR credit card and are paying that interest every month, it’s in your best interest to eliminate that debt as soon as possible. You’re not going to get a 29.99% return in a month in the stock market (unless you take on excessive risk for that return, obviously). Try to transfer that balance to a promo 0% interest credit card, and work that down.
Don’t borrow from your 401k. You’re cutting out your future returns. Don’t make that 401k loan your emergency fund, but rather have a separate emergency fund.
Do use credit cards over debit cards, for a whole host of reasons (theft being the primary reason).
Do pay yourself first. Take out at least 10% of your paycheck before it hits your checking account, and start saving.
Don’t pay monthly or annual fees on checking accounts or savings accounts. You shouldn’t be paying a bank to store your money. They should be paying you for that privilege.
Do get solid credit cards that give outstanding rewards. Do your research. Get at least 2% cash back if you can. Shoot for 5% or more. For example, Discover allows you to get 5% cash back in certain categories, and then you can redeem $20 for a $25 gift card to a number of different vendors. Looks like you just got a 6.25% return.
There are plenty of other examples. Do you spend a boatload at Amazon? Get your 5% return. As an example – I get a 5% return on gas using a certain credit card. It’s unlimited throughout the year, and is redeemed as a statement credit, so I don’t have to worry about redemption. I have a certain Amex that I redeem at 4.6% points per dollar spent, plus a 2% general cash back card (some places don’t accept Amex). I could go even crazier, like getting the 3% on restaurants, or churning cards (and there are a lot of sites out there on how to churn successfully), but at some point, it’s not worth it.
Do realize that credit cards make it easy to buy things that you don’t need. Recognize that part of yourself that wants to overspend. Ask yourself, do you need whatever it is you are buying. Would it hurt more if you paid in cash rather than credit. Buying with credit encourages you to buy more than you can afford.
Do shop around for loans/services. I asked my bank what the best car loan they could give me – they said 2.99%. I asked my credit union, and they got me 1.49%. That’s a big difference in interest over the course of a loan. Generally due to how credit unions are structured (and their presence – mostly online), they will have better deals on certain loans than banks, depending on the product.
Don’t delay saving for retirement. Generally, you’ll want to be saving 15% or more of your income for retirement early on. If you don’t save early, the harder it will be.
Do try to simplify your finances. It makes it much more complicated if you chase after the best savings rate for your online bank, and then have many accounts all over the place. The 20 dollars that you get in interest is not worth the complexity and time (aka your most valuable resource) it takes to manage all that stuff.
Don’t use your HELOC unless you have to. I have a large HELOC, but I don’t use it. But who knows when I need access to a large sum of money. And don’t use it in lieu of your emergency fund. You need both.
Do some research into budgeting tools. There’s a lot of people on these threads that recommend YNAB. I personally haven’t used it, so I can’t recommend it one way or the other. I’m old school (and cheap thrifty – why would you pay for something if you can do it yourself). But definitely check those tools out – Mint, Personal Capital, YNAB, budgeting tools through your bank, etc. Also, if your credit card does an annual summary (like Amex does), make sure you look at it to get an idea on where you’re spending – it’s very helpful.
On Tips for Saving Money
There are a ton of ways you can save money. Go ahead and google “how can I save 1000”. Wait, I did that for you - https://www.google.com/search?q=how+can+I+save+1000
Take some time, call up your cell phone providecable provider and see what specials they have. There's a ton of things you can do to save money quickly.
On Too Much Money
Say you’re an ostrich farmer, and are flush with cash. You’re asking yourself, ok, so I’ve maxed out my 401k, I’ve maxed out my Traditional IRA and then backdoored it into a Roth IRA for tax diversification plus the benefits of a Roth. I’m contributing to a 529 plan for the kids. I looked into mega backdooring my Roth but darn it my employer doesn’t let me do that. I’m doing all of the tax advantaged things I can. I still have this extra 300k sitting around – what do I do with it?!? First world problems, amIrite. Again, this comes back to your plan. What’s the short term plan with this money. What’s the long term plan. What’s your risk tolerance. What assets can you invest in that fit in with your plan. You still have to manage your budget, even if you are a 1 percenter.
On the Best Investment and Most Important Resource
I’m a firm believer that the best investment is investing in yourself (and your family and kids), and your most important resource is not money, but time. Learn a skill. Go get a degree. Give your kids a head start. Help your wife accomplish a goal. Do what you can to save time. Money of course helps, but you know what happens when you teach a man to fish.
On Happiness
Is money linked to happiness? Yes, but only to a point - https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/nation-now/2018/02/26/does-money-equal-happiness-does-until-you-earn-much/374119002/ and https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/personalfinance/2016/12/09/key-money-happiness-may-how-you-spend/94308848/
Honestly, at some point, money just becomes a scoreboard. Money will give you security. It will remove a stressor in your life. It will remove fighting and stress in your relationship (about money, fool). It will allow you to do many things. But eventually, money won’t give you happiness. You have to figure that one out yourself. And of course there’s the joke about “Money can’t buy you happiness, but it can buy you a yacht big enough to pull up right alongside it.” – David Lee Roth.
On Money and Attraction
Money by itself will not make your wife’s panties wet. Keep that in mind. Having and getting money is basic adulting. Same with saving and managing it. You want to get her wet? Get in shape. Lift. Does money boost your status? Sure. Is status one of those areas that has some effect on where you are in the sexual marketplace? Sure. Pure physical attraction? No. Do you really think that making MORE money is going to have your wife give you more sex? Of course not - https://heartiste.wordpress.com/2014/06/02/money-wont-save-beta-males/
Get in shape. Be hawt. And fix your damn teeth so you can smile like you are a somebody.
On a Brief Story
So I was talking to a friend of mine, and I asked him how he and his wife set up the finances. He told me about this system, where his paycheck goes into his checking, his wife’s paycheck goes into his wife’s checking, and they have a joint savings account. Then he went into a convoluted description on how each of them pays certain bills, and how what he’s paying is not fair since he’s paying the mortgage AND property tax AND daycare, etc etc. I thought to myself, man, what a convoluted way to deal with stuff. They would then have multiple financial meetings, and discussion on who pays what, and all this extra stuff. It was just a lack of overall ownership going on.
Just take care of the finances. Figure out a system that works for you. I’m not going to tell you which system is the best, because it’s all dependent on your unique circumstances (example: heavy spender SAHM vs saver career girl, you’ll need to put some deep restrictions on the heavy spender). But own it.
On Who Owns the Finances
You own the finances. Period. End stop. From the prior post on finances, it’s so important that I’m putting it here again:
“At the core: Who do you want in charge of your financial future?
The person interested in maintaining status quo and safety at all costs with your happiness and satisfaction a secondary or minor consideration? Or you?
If you've learned anything here it's that you need to be a captain. Putting your wife in the family alpha role breeds contempt and most of the problems that brought your here. Besides control of sex, family MONEY decision veto power is the key indicator of who is wearing the pants.”
submitted by SteelSharpensSteel to marriedredpill [link] [comments]

The Origins of the Blocksize Debate

On May 4, 2015, Gavin Andresen wrote on his blog:
I was planning to submit a pull request to the 0.11 release of Bitcoin Core that will allow miners to create blocks bigger than one megabyte, starting a little less than a year from now. But this process of peer review turned up a technical issue that needs to get addressed, and I don’t think it can be fixed in time for the first 0.11 release.
I will be writing a series of blog posts, each addressing one argument against raising the maximum block size, or against scheduling a raise right now... please send me an email ([email protected]) if I am missing any arguments
In other words, Gavin proposed a hard fork via a series of blog posts, bypassing all developer communication channels altogether and asking for personal, private emails from anyone interested in discussing the proposal further.
On May 5 (1 day after Gavin submitted his first blog post), Mike Hearn published The capacity cliff on his Medium page. 2 days later, he posted Crash landing. In these posts, he argued:
A common argument for letting Bitcoin blocks fill up is that the outcome won’t be so bad: just a market for fees... this is wrong. I don’t believe fees will become high and stable if Bitcoin runs out of capacity. Instead, I believe Bitcoin will crash.
...a permanent backlog would start to build up... as the backlog grows, nodes will start running out of memory and dying... as Core will accept any transaction that’s valid without any limit a node crash is eventually inevitable.
He also, in the latter article, explained that he disagreed with Satoshi's vision for how Bitcoin would mature[1][2]:
Neither me nor Gavin believe a fee market will work as a substitute for the inflation subsidy.
Gavin continued to publish the series of blog posts he had announced while Hearn made these predictions. [1][2][3][4][5][6][7]
Matt Corallo brought Gavin's proposal up on the bitcoin-dev mailing list after a few days. He wrote:
Recently there has been a flurry of posts by Gavin at http://gavinandresen.svbtle.com/ which advocate strongly for increasing the maximum block size. However, there hasnt been any discussion on this mailing list in several years as far as I can tell...
So, at the risk of starting a flamewar, I'll provide a little bait to get some responses and hope the discussion opens up into an honest comparison of the tradeoffs here. Certainly a consensus in this kind of technical community should be a basic requirement for any serious commitment to blocksize increase.
Personally, I'm rather strongly against any commitment to a block size increase in the near future. Long-term incentive compatibility requires that there be some fee pressure, and that blocks be relatively consistently full or very nearly full. What we see today are transactions enjoying next-block confirmations with nearly zero pressure to include any fee at all (though many do because it makes wallet code simpler).
This allows the well-funded Bitcoin ecosystem to continue building systems which rely on transactions moving quickly into blocks while pretending these systems scale. Thus, instead of working on technologies which bring Bitcoin's trustlessness to systems which scale beyond a blockchain's necessarily slow and (compared to updating numbers in a database) expensive settlement, the ecosystem as a whole continues to focus on building centralized platforms and advocate for changes to Bitcoin which allow them to maintain the status quo
Shortly thereafter, Corallo explained further:
The point of the hard block size limit is exactly because giving miners free rule to do anything they like with their blocks would allow them to do any number of crazy attacks. The incentives for miners to pick block sizes are no where near compatible with what allows the network to continue to run in a decentralized manner.
Tier Nolan considered possible extensions and modifications that might improve Gavin's proposal and argued that soft caps could be used to mitigate against the dangers of a blocksize increase. Tom Harding voiced support for Gavin's proposal
Peter Todd mentioned that a limited blocksize provides the benefit of protecting against the "perverse incentives" behind potential block withholding attacks.
Slush didn't have a strong opinion one way or the other, and neither did Eric Lombrozo, though Eric was interested in developing hard-fork best practices and wanted to:
explore all the complexities involved with deployment of hard forks. Let’s not just do a one-off ad-hoc thing.
Matt Whitlock voiced his opinion:
I'm not so much opposed to a block size increase as I am opposed to a hard fork... I strongly fear that the hard fork itself will become an excuse to change other aspects of the system in ways that will have unintended and possibly disastrous consequences.
Bryan Bishop strongly opposed Gavin's proposal, and offered a philosophical perspective on the matter:
there has been significant public discussion... about why increasing the max block size is kicking the can down the road while possibly compromising blockchain security. There were many excellent objections that were raised that, sadly, I see are not referenced at all in the recent media blitz. Frankly I can't help but feel that if contributions, like those from #bitcoin-wizards, have been ignored in lieu of technical analysis, and the absence of discussion on this mailing list, that I feel perhaps there are other subtle and extremely important technical details that are completely absent from this--and other-- proposals.
Secured decentralization is the most important and most interesting property of bitcoin. Everything else is rather trivial and could be achieved millions of times more efficiently with conventional technology. Our technical work should be informed by the technical nature of the system we have constructed.
There's no doubt in my mind that bitcoin will always see the most extreme campaigns and the most extreme misunderstandings... for development purposes we must hold ourselves to extremely high standards before proposing changes, especially to the public, that have the potential to be unsafe and economically unsafe.
There are many potential technical solutions for aggregating millions (trillions?) of transactions into tiny bundles. As a small proof-of-concept, imagine two parties sending transactions back and forth 100 million times. Instead of recording every transaction, you could record the start state and the end state, and end up with two transactions or less. That's a 100 million fold, without modifying max block size and without potentially compromising secured decentralization.
The MIT group should listen up and get to work figuring out how to measure decentralization and its security.. Getting this measurement right would be really beneficial because we would have a more academic and technical understanding to work with.
Gregory Maxwell echoed and extended that perspective:
When Bitcoin is changed fundamentally, via a hard fork, to have different properties, the change can create winners or losers...
There are non-trivial number of people who hold extremes on any of these general belief patterns; Even among the core developers there is not a consensus on Bitcoin's optimal role in society and the commercial marketplace.
there is a at least a two fold concern on this particular ("Long term Mining incentives") front:
One is that the long-held argument is that security of the Bitcoin system in the long term depends on fee income funding autonomous, anonymous, decentralized miners profitably applying enough hash-power to make reorganizations infeasible.
For fees to achieve this purpose, there seemingly must be an effective scarcity of capacity.
The second is that when subsidy has fallen well below fees, the incentive to move the blockchain forward goes away. An optimal rational miner would be best off forking off the current best block in order to capture its fees, rather than moving the blockchain forward...
tools like the Lightning network proposal could well allow us to hit a greater spectrum of demands at once--including secure zero-confirmation (something that larger blocksizes reduce if anything), which is important for many applications. With the right technology I believe we can have our cake and eat it too, but there needs to be a reason to build it; the security and decentralization level of Bitcoin imposes a hard upper limit on anything that can be based on it.
Another key point here is that the small bumps in blocksize which wouldn't clearly knock the system into a largely centralized mode--small constants--are small enough that they don't quantitatively change the operation of the system; they don't open up new applications that aren't possible today
the procedure I'd prefer would be something like this: if there is a standing backlog, we-the-community of users look to indicators to gauge if the network is losing decentralization and then double the hard limit with proper controls to allow smooth adjustment without fees going to zero (see the past proposals for automatic block size controls that let miners increase up to a hard maximum over the median if they mine at quadratically harder difficulty), and we don't increase if it appears it would be at a substantial increase in centralization risk. Hardfork changes should only be made if they're almost completely uncontroversial--where virtually everyone can look at the available data and say "yea, that isn't undermining my property rights or future use of Bitcoin; it's no big deal". Unfortunately, every indicator I can think of except fee totals has been going in the wrong direction almost monotonically along with the blockchain size increase since 2012 when we started hitting full blocks and responded by increasing the default soft target. This is frustrating
many people--myself included--have been working feverishly hard behind the scenes on Bitcoin Core to increase the scalability. This work isn't small-potatoes boring software engineering stuff; I mean even my personal contributions include things like inventing a wholly new generic algebraic optimization applicable to all EC signature schemes that increases performance by 4%, and that is before getting into the R&D stuff that hasn't really borne fruit yet, like fraud proofs. Today Bitcoin Core is easily >100 times faster to synchronize and relay than when I first got involved on the same hardware, but these improvements have been swallowed by the growth. The ironic thing is that our frantic efforts to keep ahead and not lose decentralization have both not been enough (by the best measures, full node usage is the lowest its been since 2011 even though the user base is huge now) and yet also so much that people could seriously talk about increasing the block size to something gigantic like 20MB. This sounds less reasonable when you realize that even at 1MB we'd likely have a smoking hole in the ground if not for existing enormous efforts to make scaling not come at a loss of decentralization.
Peter Todd also summarized some academic findings on the subject:
In short, without either a fixed blocksize or fixed fee per transaction Bitcoin will will not survive as there is no viable way to pay for PoW security. The latter option - fixed fee per transaction - is non-trivial to implement in a way that's actually meaningful - it's easy to give miners "kickbacks" - leaving us with a fixed blocksize.
Even a relatively small increase to 20MB will greatly reduce the number of people who can participate fully in Bitcoin, creating an environment where the next increase requires the consent of an even smaller portion of the Bitcoin ecosystem. Where does that stop? What's the proposed mechanism that'll create an incentive and social consensus to not just 'kick the can down the road'(3) and further centralize but actually scale up Bitcoin the hard way?
Some developers (e.g. Aaron Voisine) voiced support for Gavin's proposal which repeated Mike Hearn's "crash landing" arguments.
Pieter Wuille said:
I am - in general - in favor of increasing the size blocks...
Controversial hard forks. I hope the mailing list here today already proves it is a controversial issue. Independent of personal opinions pro or against, I don't think we can do a hard fork that is controversial in nature. Either the result is effectively a fork, and pre-existing coins can be spent once on both sides (effectively failing Bitcoin's primary purpose), or the result is one side forced to upgrade to something they dislike - effectively giving a power to developers they should never have. Quoting someone: "I did not sign up to be part of a central banker's committee".
The reason for increasing is "need". If "we need more space in blocks" is the reason to do an upgrade, it won't stop after 20 MB. There is nothing fundamental possible with 20 MB blocks that isn't with 1 MB blocks.
Misrepresentation of the trade-offs. You can argue all you want that none of the effects of larger blocks are particularly damaging, so everything is fine. They will damage something (see below for details), and we should analyze these effects, and be honest about them, and present them as a trade-off made we choose to make to scale the system better. If you just ask people if they want more transactions, of course you'll hear yes. If you ask people if they want to pay less taxes, I'm sure the vast majority will agree as well.
Miner centralization. There is currently, as far as I know, no technology that can relay and validate 20 MB blocks across the planet, in a manner fast enough to avoid very significant costs to mining. There is work in progress on this (including Gavin's IBLT-based relay, or Greg's block network coding), but I don't think we should be basing the future of the economics of the system on undemonstrated ideas. Without those (or even with), the result may be that miners self-limit the size of their blocks to propagate faster, but if this happens, larger, better-connected, and more centrally-located groups of miners gain a competitive advantage by being able to produce larger blocks. I would like to point out that there is nothing evil about this - a simple feedback to determine an optimal block size for an individual miner will result in larger blocks for better connected hash power. If we do not want miners to have this ability, "we" (as in: those using full nodes) should demand limitations that prevent it. One such limitation is a block size limit (whatever it is).
Ability to use a full node.
Skewed incentives for improvements... without actual pressure to work on these, I doubt much will change. Increasing the size of blocks now will simply make it cheap enough to continue business as usual for a while - while forcing a massive cost increase (and not just a monetary one) on the entire ecosystem.
Fees and long-term incentives.
I don't think 1 MB is optimal. Block size is a compromise between scalability of transactions and verifiability of the system. A system with 10 transactions per day that is verifiable by a pocket calculator is not useful, as it would only serve a few large bank's settlements. A system which can deal with every coffee bought on the planet, but requires a Google-scale data center to verify is also not useful, as it would be trivially out-competed by a VISA-like design. The usefulness needs in a balance, and there is no optimal choice for everyone. We can choose where that balance lies, but we must accept that this is done as a trade-off, and that that trade-off will have costs such as hardware costs, decreasing anonymity, less independence, smaller target audience for people able to fully validate, ...
Choose wisely.
Mike Hearn responded:
this list is not a good place for making progress or reaching decisions.
if Bitcoin continues on its current growth trends it will run out of capacity, almost certainly by some time next year. What we need to see right now is leadership and a plan, that fits in the available time window.
I no longer believe this community can reach consensus on anything protocol related.
When the money supply eventually dwindles I doubt it will be fee pressure that funds mining
What I don't see from you yet is a specific and credible plan that fits within the next 12 months and which allows Bitcoin to keep growing.
Peter Todd then pointed out that, contrary to Mike's claims, developer consensus had been achieved within Core plenty of times recently. Btc-drak asked Mike to "explain where the 12 months timeframe comes from?"
Jorge Timón wrote an incredibly prescient reply to Mike:
We've successfully reached consensus for several softfork proposals already. I agree with others that hardfork need to be uncontroversial and there should be consensus about them. If you have other ideas for the criteria for hardfork deployment all I'm ears. I just hope that by "What we need to see right now is leadership" you don't mean something like "when Gaving and Mike agree it's enough to deploy a hardfork" when you go from vague to concrete.
Oh, so your answer to "bitcoin will eventually need to live on fees and we would like to know more about how it will look like then" it's "no bitcoin long term it's broken long term but that's far away in the future so let's just worry about the present". I agree that it's hard to predict that future, but having some competition for block space would actually help us get more data on a similar situation to be able to predict that future better. What you want to avoid at all cost (the block size actually being used), I see as the best opportunity we have to look into the future.
this is my plan: we wait 12 months... and start having full blocks and people having to wait 2 blocks for their transactions to be confirmed some times. That would be the beginning of a true "fee market", something that Gavin used to say was his #1 priority not so long ago (which seems contradictory with his current efforts to avoid that from happening). Having a true fee market seems clearly an advantage. What are supposedly disastrous negative parts of this plan that make an alternative plan (ie: increasing the block size) so necessary and obvious. I think the advocates of the size increase are failing to explain the disadvantages of maintaining the current size. It feels like the explanation are missing because it should be somehow obvious how the sky will burn if we don't increase the block size soon. But, well, it is not obvious to me, so please elaborate on why having a fee market (instead of just an price estimator for a market that doesn't even really exist) would be a disaster.
Some suspected Gavin/Mike were trying to rush the hard fork for personal reasons.
Mike Hearn's response was to demand a "leader" who could unilaterally steer the Bitcoin project and make decisions unchecked:
No. What I meant is that someone (theoretically Wladimir) needs to make a clear decision. If that decision is "Bitcoin Core will wait and watch the fireworks when blocks get full", that would be showing leadership
I will write more on the topic of what will happen if we hit the block size limit... I don't believe we will get any useful data out of such an event. I've seen distributed systems run out of capacity before. What will happen instead is technological failure followed by rapid user abandonment...
we need to hear something like that from Wladimir, or whoever has the final say around here.
Jorge Timón responded:
it is true that "universally uncontroversial" (which is what I think the requirement should be for hard forks) is a vague qualifier that's not formally defined anywhere. I guess we should only consider rational arguments. You cannot just nack something without further explanation. If his explanation was "I will change my mind after we increase block size", I guess the community should say "then we will just ignore your nack because it makes no sense". In the same way, when people use fallacies (purposely or not) we must expose that and say "this fallacy doesn't count as an argument". But yeah, it would probably be good to define better what constitutes a "sensible objection" or something. That doesn't seem simple though.
it seems that some people would like to see that happening before the subsidies are low (not necessarily null), while other people are fine waiting for that but don't want to ever be close to the scale limits anytime soon. I would also like to know for how long we need to prioritize short term adoption in this way. As others have said, if the answer is "forever, adoption is always the most important thing" then we will end up with an improved version of Visa. But yeah, this is progress, I'll wait for your more detailed description of the tragedies that will follow hitting the block limits, assuming for now that it will happen in 12 months. My previous answer to the nervous "we will hit the block limits in 12 months if we don't do anything" was "not sure about 12 months, but whatever, great, I'm waiting for that to observe how fees get affected". But it should have been a question "what's wrong with hitting the block limits in 12 months?"
Mike Hearn again asserted the need for a leader:
There must be a single decision maker for any given codebase.
Bryan Bishop attempted to explain why this did not make sense with git architecture.
Finally, Gavin announced his intent to merge the patch into Bitcoin XT to bypass the peer review he had received on the bitcoin-dev mailing list.
submitted by sound8bits to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

How to legally separate sibling's coins into their names from mine?

In mid-2017 my siblings and I wanted to invest $50k into crypto through coinbase, which we did. Problem is we did it in a rush and only through my Coinbase/Gdax account since it was the account with the highest buying limit, because it was the oldest account. When they opened accounts it wouldn't let them buy any decent amount at once, a couple hundred each time, while mine had a several thousand limit (I bought some coins in 2015, plus fiddled in trading a bit in early 2017, so my limit was higher)
My question is, we want to seperate into our own Trezor wallets, but the record for buying these coins is all in my name legally. How do we legally change them to their names without resetting the Capital gains long term short term clock? Is it possible?
I'm afraid the only option may be for me to just sell their portion, and transfer the money to their coinbase accounts, for them to rebuy it in their names. But that would leave them having to wait another year for the capital gains long term rate to kick in if they sell.
Is this the only sensible option?
I need this to work so bitcoin.tax correctly calculates my taxes each year. Which is why I'm concerned this may be the only option.
Edit: it looks like Bitcoin.Tax gives me the option to gift them their coins. So I'm going to do that up to the limit. Thanks everyone! I may need to sell anything of theirs above the limit but that's fine, as long as at least some of it can be gifted, so they maintain the capital gains tax rate.
submitted by electriccars to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Questions post! (Newbie miner) Also potential build included at bottom.

Important note: I have tried searching for most of these questions, and as for earnings, the only things I can find are people from 2014-2015 saying that GPU mining is dead, and on the other topics, it's all very vague or overly complex answers which my brain can't wrap itself around.
So hopefully this post won't be totally trampled, as I will probably ask some really stupid question. Bear in mind, I recently discovered bitcoin mining about 10 days ago. Since then I've had some good replies from a miner on another subreddit, and he assures me that GPU mining is now back in action. This is ofcourse dependent on power prices, but with my 0.04$ kW/h, I was all good.
At first I didn't wanna go all-in with this, but seeing Bitcoin rise in prices, and being personally very sure that it'll keep rising, I'm more intrigued to up the ante.
I'll also try and update this post as it goes along with "yes/no" answers, as/if they get answered.
So, here we go!
First off, I wanted to ask questions in regards to Bitcoin mining and GPU mining. Personal opinions are of course welcome.
  1. Is GPU mining still viable? I've already been told by one person that it is, but would like to hear other people's opinion.
  2. Will Bitcoin mining become harder and less profitable in the near (2-3 years) future? The reason I ask this, is because I've read that only the chinese with the best ASIC's can keep earning money today, and for them, it also becomes harder every day, and they earn less and less. Hopefully this isn't true.
  3. As the price of Bitcoin goes up (if it does), will NiceHash mining become more and more profitable?
In this next section, I wanna dive a bit more into NiceHash, and what it is exactly.
From what I've read, it basically rents out your hashing power, so you're not really mining, despite the program being called "miner".
  1. Is there something I missed there, or is that correct? Are you just renting out your hashing power?
  2. If the above is right, does NiceHash always rent out your hashing power to whatever is most profitable?
  3. What exactly is Lbry, Lyra2REv2, Pascal, Equihash etc.? Are they pools? Algorithms?
  4. Say I go to the profibility calculator, and I see that Lyra2REv2 is the most profitable for my GPU, at 39.5%. Does this then mean that I should pick only that in my NiceHash algorithm settings? Or should I pick the ones who are at 29.8% (Lbry) and 23.8% (Equihash) aswell? Does that increase my gains?
  5. If the last one above was correct, would it then be best to check the calculator daily, and only select the algorithm that earns the most based on %?
  6. Is the NiceHash profitability calculator correct, or is it just very rough estimates? Can I really earn 1220$ worth in Bitcoin over 1 year on my GTX 1080ti? (disregarding Bitcoin price changes ofcourse)
Now I'd like to delve more into my own calculations, what I have per today, and what I would like to try out. I'm very glad if you could point out some huge flaws in my plan, and crush my dreams. I would appreciate that a lot more than just letting me try it and loosing tons of capital. Obviously, if there's a question of just risking it, I'll take this decision myself. But helpful input is always welcome!
My GPU, daily profit, power cost etc.
  • GTX 1080ti FE
  • Daily profit: 5-8$
  • Power cost: 0.04$ (I live in Norway)
  • Environment: Humid, cold, lot of wind
  • Living area: Above ground "basement"
So I don't know if all of the above matters, but that's at least something to go by. From what I can understand, these are good conditions. Correct me if I'm wrong.
I was curious as to what I could earn if I built a proper dedicated rig for pure GPU mining. So I went to a popular website we use called Komplett.no and checked out some prices. Here's what I got. Bear in mind that these are all new parts with at least 2 year warranty and 5 year customer warranty.
  • Mobo: ASUS Prime Z270-P, Socket-1151 (146$)
Picked this MOBO as you could have up to 8 (?) GPU's connected to it with some nifty connectors.
  • CPU: Intel Celeron G3930 Kaby Lake (60$)
Just found whatever CPU that was cheapest.
  • RAM: Crucial DDR4 2133MHz 4GB x2 = 8gb (85$)
Cheapest I could find for the MOBO.
  • SSD: Kingston A400 120GB 2.5" SSD (70$)
Also the cheapest. Could probably find something even cheaper on our "craigslist" but I guess it's best to have a new warranty.
  • PSU: Corsair AX1200, 1200W PSU (403$)
From what I understand, AX is platinum rated, and I assume this would be best if I'm going to maybe implement more than 2 graphics cards in the future? Or would it be best to buy 2 cheaper gold ones and connect them together? And do you get significant profit increases if you go up in rating? Or is too small to even bother?
  • GPU: 980GTX x2 on our "craigslists" (475$ for both)
This is probably where I'll have the hardest time deciding. I could go for 1080's, pay more, and earn more. If this was the case, I would also be able to buy them new with a warranty on them. The decrease in value would also not be as big as with 980's. But is it worth it? I can get 1080's used for around 595$, and probably around 540$ if I haggle a little bit.
Total: 1239$ for the 980 SLI build. According to the profitability calculator, this will earn me 2440$ per year before taxes, electricity bills etc. Biggest question is then: Is this total bogus, or is it roughly correct if Bitcoin stays at the price it is today/rises?
So that's all I have up until now! I haven't seen any post this long on this subreddit yet, so if this is considered "spam" or "2much" please feel free to delete it and toss me a warning. I'm just very excited about GPU mining, and instead of posting questions every day and so forth, I'd rather just ask everything in one post :)
Thanks for reading, and have a nice day!
submitted by Tex-- to NiceHash [link] [comments]

The Origins of the (Modern) Blocksize Debate

On May 4, 2015, Gavin Andresen wrote on his blog:
I was planning to submit a pull request to the 0.11 release of Bitcoin Core that will allow miners to create blocks bigger than one megabyte, starting a little less than a year from now. But this process of peer review turned up a technical issue that needs to get addressed, and I don’t think it can be fixed in time for the first 0.11 release.
I will be writing a series of blog posts, each addressing one argument against raising the maximum block size, or against scheduling a raise right now... please send me an email ([email protected]) if I am missing any arguments
In other words, Gavin proposed a hard fork via a series of blog posts, bypassing all developer communication channels altogether and asking for personal, private emails from anyone interested in discussing the proposal further.
On May 5 (1 day after Gavin submitted his first blog post), Mike Hearn published The capacity cliff on his Medium page. 2 days later, he posted Crash landing. In these posts, he argued:
A common argument for letting Bitcoin blocks fill up is that the outcome won’t be so bad: just a market for fees... this is wrong. I don’t believe fees will become high and stable if Bitcoin runs out of capacity. Instead, I believe Bitcoin will crash.
...a permanent backlog would start to build up... as the backlog grows, nodes will start running out of memory and dying... as Core will accept any transaction that’s valid without any limit a node crash is eventually inevitable.
He also, in the latter article, explained that he disagreed with Satoshi's vision for how Bitcoin would mature[1][2]:
Neither me nor Gavin believe a fee market will work as a substitute for the inflation subsidy.
Gavin continued to publish the series of blog posts he had announced while Hearn made these predictions. [1][2][3][4][5][6][7]
Matt Corallo brought Gavin's proposal up on the bitcoin-dev mailing list after a few days. He wrote:
Recently there has been a flurry of posts by Gavin at http://gavinandresen.svbtle.com/ which advocate strongly for increasing the maximum block size. However, there hasnt been any discussion on this mailing list in several years as far as I can tell...
So, at the risk of starting a flamewar, I'll provide a little bait to get some responses and hope the discussion opens up into an honest comparison of the tradeoffs here. Certainly a consensus in this kind of technical community should be a basic requirement for any serious commitment to blocksize increase.
Personally, I'm rather strongly against any commitment to a block size increase in the near future. Long-term incentive compatibility requires that there be some fee pressure, and that blocks be relatively consistently full or very nearly full. What we see today are transactions enjoying next-block confirmations with nearly zero pressure to include any fee at all (though many do because it makes wallet code simpler).
This allows the well-funded Bitcoin ecosystem to continue building systems which rely on transactions moving quickly into blocks while pretending these systems scale. Thus, instead of working on technologies which bring Bitcoin's trustlessness to systems which scale beyond a blockchain's necessarily slow and (compared to updating numbers in a database) expensive settlement, the ecosystem as a whole continues to focus on building centralized platforms and advocate for changes to Bitcoin which allow them to maintain the status quo
Shortly thereafter, Corallo explained further:
The point of the hard block size limit is exactly because giving miners free rule to do anything they like with their blocks would allow them to do any number of crazy attacks. The incentives for miners to pick block sizes are no where near compatible with what allows the network to continue to run in a decentralized manner.
Tier Nolan considered possible extensions and modifications that might improve Gavin's proposal and argued that soft caps could be used to mitigate against the dangers of a blocksize increase. Tom Harding voiced support for Gavin's proposal
Peter Todd mentioned that a limited blocksize provides the benefit of protecting against the "perverse incentives" behind potential block withholding attacks.
Slush didn't have a strong opinion one way or the other, and neither did Eric Lombrozo, though Eric was interested in developing hard-fork best practices and wanted to:
explore all the complexities involved with deployment of hard forks. Let’s not just do a one-off ad-hoc thing.
Matt Whitlock voiced his opinion:
I'm not so much opposed to a block size increase as I am opposed to a hard fork... I strongly fear that the hard fork itself will become an excuse to change other aspects of the system in ways that will have unintended and possibly disastrous consequences.
Bryan Bishop strongly opposed Gavin's proposal, and offered a philosophical perspective on the matter:
there has been significant public discussion... about why increasing the max block size is kicking the can down the road while possibly compromising blockchain security. There were many excellent objections that were raised that, sadly, I see are not referenced at all in the recent media blitz. Frankly I can't help but feel that if contributions, like those from #bitcoin-wizards, have been ignored in lieu of technical analysis, and the absence of discussion on this mailing list, that I feel perhaps there are other subtle and extremely important technical details that are completely absent from this--and other-- proposals.
Secured decentralization is the most important and most interesting property of bitcoin. Everything else is rather trivial and could be achieved millions of times more efficiently with conventional technology. Our technical work should be informed by the technical nature of the system we have constructed.
There's no doubt in my mind that bitcoin will always see the most extreme campaigns and the most extreme misunderstandings... for development purposes we must hold ourselves to extremely high standards before proposing changes, especially to the public, that have the potential to be unsafe and economically unsafe.
There are many potential technical solutions for aggregating millions (trillions?) of transactions into tiny bundles. As a small proof-of-concept, imagine two parties sending transactions back and forth 100 million times. Instead of recording every transaction, you could record the start state and the end state, and end up with two transactions or less. That's a 100 million fold, without modifying max block size and without potentially compromising secured decentralization.
The MIT group should listen up and get to work figuring out how to measure decentralization and its security.. Getting this measurement right would be really beneficial because we would have a more academic and technical understanding to work with.
Gregory Maxwell echoed and extended that perspective:
When Bitcoin is changed fundamentally, via a hard fork, to have different properties, the change can create winners or losers...
There are non-trivial number of people who hold extremes on any of these general belief patterns; Even among the core developers there is not a consensus on Bitcoin's optimal role in society and the commercial marketplace.
there is a at least a two fold concern on this particular ("Long term Mining incentives") front:
One is that the long-held argument is that security of the Bitcoin system in the long term depends on fee income funding autonomous, anonymous, decentralized miners profitably applying enough hash-power to make reorganizations infeasible.
For fees to achieve this purpose, there seemingly must be an effective scarcity of capacity.
The second is that when subsidy has fallen well below fees, the incentive to move the blockchain forward goes away. An optimal rational miner would be best off forking off the current best block in order to capture its fees, rather than moving the blockchain forward...
tools like the Lightning network proposal could well allow us to hit a greater spectrum of demands at once--including secure zero-confirmation (something that larger blocksizes reduce if anything), which is important for many applications. With the right technology I believe we can have our cake and eat it too, but there needs to be a reason to build it; the security and decentralization level of Bitcoin imposes a hard upper limit on anything that can be based on it.
Another key point here is that the small bumps in blocksize which wouldn't clearly knock the system into a largely centralized mode--small constants--are small enough that they don't quantitatively change the operation of the system; they don't open up new applications that aren't possible today
the procedure I'd prefer would be something like this: if there is a standing backlog, we-the-community of users look to indicators to gauge if the network is losing decentralization and then double the hard limit with proper controls to allow smooth adjustment without fees going to zero (see the past proposals for automatic block size controls that let miners increase up to a hard maximum over the median if they mine at quadratically harder difficulty), and we don't increase if it appears it would be at a substantial increase in centralization risk. Hardfork changes should only be made if they're almost completely uncontroversial--where virtually everyone can look at the available data and say "yea, that isn't undermining my property rights or future use of Bitcoin; it's no big deal". Unfortunately, every indicator I can think of except fee totals has been going in the wrong direction almost monotonically along with the blockchain size increase since 2012 when we started hitting full blocks and responded by increasing the default soft target. This is frustrating
many people--myself included--have been working feverishly hard behind the scenes on Bitcoin Core to increase the scalability. This work isn't small-potatoes boring software engineering stuff; I mean even my personal contributions include things like inventing a wholly new generic algebraic optimization applicable to all EC signature schemes that increases performance by 4%, and that is before getting into the R&D stuff that hasn't really borne fruit yet, like fraud proofs. Today Bitcoin Core is easily >100 times faster to synchronize and relay than when I first got involved on the same hardware, but these improvements have been swallowed by the growth. The ironic thing is that our frantic efforts to keep ahead and not lose decentralization have both not been enough (by the best measures, full node usage is the lowest its been since 2011 even though the user base is huge now) and yet also so much that people could seriously talk about increasing the block size to something gigantic like 20MB. This sounds less reasonable when you realize that even at 1MB we'd likely have a smoking hole in the ground if not for existing enormous efforts to make scaling not come at a loss of decentralization.
Peter Todd also summarized some academic findings on the subject:
In short, without either a fixed blocksize or fixed fee per transaction Bitcoin will will not survive as there is no viable way to pay for PoW security. The latter option - fixed fee per transaction - is non-trivial to implement in a way that's actually meaningful - it's easy to give miners "kickbacks" - leaving us with a fixed blocksize.
Even a relatively small increase to 20MB will greatly reduce the number of people who can participate fully in Bitcoin, creating an environment where the next increase requires the consent of an even smaller portion of the Bitcoin ecosystem. Where does that stop? What's the proposed mechanism that'll create an incentive and social consensus to not just 'kick the can down the road'(3) and further centralize but actually scale up Bitcoin the hard way?
Some developers (e.g. Aaron Voisine) voiced support for Gavin's proposal which repeated Mike Hearn's "crash landing" arguments.
Pieter Wuille said:
I am - in general - in favor of increasing the size blocks...
Controversial hard forks. I hope the mailing list here today already proves it is a controversial issue. Independent of personal opinions pro or against, I don't think we can do a hard fork that is controversial in nature. Either the result is effectively a fork, and pre-existing coins can be spent once on both sides (effectively failing Bitcoin's primary purpose), or the result is one side forced to upgrade to something they dislike - effectively giving a power to developers they should never have. Quoting someone: "I did not sign up to be part of a central banker's committee".
The reason for increasing is "need". If "we need more space in blocks" is the reason to do an upgrade, it won't stop after 20 MB. There is nothing fundamental possible with 20 MB blocks that isn't with 1 MB blocks.
Misrepresentation of the trade-offs. You can argue all you want that none of the effects of larger blocks are particularly damaging, so everything is fine. They will damage something (see below for details), and we should analyze these effects, and be honest about them, and present them as a trade-off made we choose to make to scale the system better. If you just ask people if they want more transactions, of course you'll hear yes. If you ask people if they want to pay less taxes, I'm sure the vast majority will agree as well.
Miner centralization. There is currently, as far as I know, no technology that can relay and validate 20 MB blocks across the planet, in a manner fast enough to avoid very significant costs to mining. There is work in progress on this (including Gavin's IBLT-based relay, or Greg's block network coding), but I don't think we should be basing the future of the economics of the system on undemonstrated ideas. Without those (or even with), the result may be that miners self-limit the size of their blocks to propagate faster, but if this happens, larger, better-connected, and more centrally-located groups of miners gain a competitive advantage by being able to produce larger blocks. I would like to point out that there is nothing evil about this - a simple feedback to determine an optimal block size for an individual miner will result in larger blocks for better connected hash power. If we do not want miners to have this ability, "we" (as in: those using full nodes) should demand limitations that prevent it. One such limitation is a block size limit (whatever it is).
Ability to use a full node.
Skewed incentives for improvements... without actual pressure to work on these, I doubt much will change. Increasing the size of blocks now will simply make it cheap enough to continue business as usual for a while - while forcing a massive cost increase (and not just a monetary one) on the entire ecosystem.
Fees and long-term incentives.
I don't think 1 MB is optimal. Block size is a compromise between scalability of transactions and verifiability of the system. A system with 10 transactions per day that is verifiable by a pocket calculator is not useful, as it would only serve a few large bank's settlements. A system which can deal with every coffee bought on the planet, but requires a Google-scale data center to verify is also not useful, as it would be trivially out-competed by a VISA-like design. The usefulness needs in a balance, and there is no optimal choice for everyone. We can choose where that balance lies, but we must accept that this is done as a trade-off, and that that trade-off will have costs such as hardware costs, decreasing anonymity, less independence, smaller target audience for people able to fully validate, ...
Choose wisely.
Mike Hearn responded:
this list is not a good place for making progress or reaching decisions.
if Bitcoin continues on its current growth trends it will run out of capacity, almost certainly by some time next year. What we need to see right now is leadership and a plan, that fits in the available time window.
I no longer believe this community can reach consensus on anything protocol related.
When the money supply eventually dwindles I doubt it will be fee pressure that funds mining
What I don't see from you yet is a specific and credible plan that fits within the next 12 months and which allows Bitcoin to keep growing.
Peter Todd then pointed out that, contrary to Mike's claims, developer consensus had been achieved within Core plenty of times recently. Btc-drak asked Mike to "explain where the 12 months timeframe comes from?"
Jorge Timón wrote an incredibly prescient reply to Mike:
We've successfully reached consensus for several softfork proposals already. I agree with others that hardfork need to be uncontroversial and there should be consensus about them. If you have other ideas for the criteria for hardfork deployment all I'm ears. I just hope that by "What we need to see right now is leadership" you don't mean something like "when Gaving and Mike agree it's enough to deploy a hardfork" when you go from vague to concrete.
Oh, so your answer to "bitcoin will eventually need to live on fees and we would like to know more about how it will look like then" it's "no bitcoin long term it's broken long term but that's far away in the future so let's just worry about the present". I agree that it's hard to predict that future, but having some competition for block space would actually help us get more data on a similar situation to be able to predict that future better. What you want to avoid at all cost (the block size actually being used), I see as the best opportunity we have to look into the future.
this is my plan: we wait 12 months... and start having full blocks and people having to wait 2 blocks for their transactions to be confirmed some times. That would be the beginning of a true "fee market", something that Gavin used to say was his #1 priority not so long ago (which seems contradictory with his current efforts to avoid that from happening). Having a true fee market seems clearly an advantage. What are supposedly disastrous negative parts of this plan that make an alternative plan (ie: increasing the block size) so necessary and obvious. I think the advocates of the size increase are failing to explain the disadvantages of maintaining the current size. It feels like the explanation are missing because it should be somehow obvious how the sky will burn if we don't increase the block size soon. But, well, it is not obvious to me, so please elaborate on why having a fee market (instead of just an price estimator for a market that doesn't even really exist) would be a disaster.
Some suspected Gavin/Mike were trying to rush the hard fork for personal reasons.
Mike Hearn's response was to demand a "leader" who could unilaterally steer the Bitcoin project and make decisions unchecked:
No. What I meant is that someone (theoretically Wladimir) needs to make a clear decision. If that decision is "Bitcoin Core will wait and watch the fireworks when blocks get full", that would be showing leadership
I will write more on the topic of what will happen if we hit the block size limit... I don't believe we will get any useful data out of such an event. I've seen distributed systems run out of capacity before. What will happen instead is technological failure followed by rapid user abandonment...
we need to hear something like that from Wladimir, or whoever has the final say around here.
Jorge Timón responded:
it is true that "universally uncontroversial" (which is what I think the requirement should be for hard forks) is a vague qualifier that's not formally defined anywhere. I guess we should only consider rational arguments. You cannot just nack something without further explanation. If his explanation was "I will change my mind after we increase block size", I guess the community should say "then we will just ignore your nack because it makes no sense". In the same way, when people use fallacies (purposely or not) we must expose that and say "this fallacy doesn't count as an argument". But yeah, it would probably be good to define better what constitutes a "sensible objection" or something. That doesn't seem simple though.
it seems that some people would like to see that happening before the subsidies are low (not necessarily null), while other people are fine waiting for that but don't want to ever be close to the scale limits anytime soon. I would also like to know for how long we need to prioritize short term adoption in this way. As others have said, if the answer is "forever, adoption is always the most important thing" then we will end up with an improved version of Visa. But yeah, this is progress, I'll wait for your more detailed description of the tragedies that will follow hitting the block limits, assuming for now that it will happen in 12 months. My previous answer to the nervous "we will hit the block limits in 12 months if we don't do anything" was "not sure about 12 months, but whatever, great, I'm waiting for that to observe how fees get affected". But it should have been a question "what's wrong with hitting the block limits in 12 months?"
Mike Hearn again asserted the need for a leader:
There must be a single decision maker for any given codebase.
Bryan Bishop attempted to explain why this did not make sense with git architecture.
Finally, Gavin announced his intent to merge the patch into Bitcoin XT to bypass the peer review he had received on the bitcoin-dev mailing list.
submitted by sound8bits to sound8bits [link] [comments]

Bitcoin Mining & The Beauty Of Capitalism

Authored by Valentin Schmid via The Epoch Times,
While the price of bitcoin drops, miners get more creative... and some flourish.
The bitcoin price is crashing; naysayers and doomsayers are having a field day. The demise of the dominant cryptocurrency is finally happening — or is it?
Bitcoin has been buried hundreds of times, most notably during the brutal 90 percent decline from 2013 to 2015. And yet it has always made a comeback.
Where the skeptics are correct: The second bitcoin bubble burst in December of last year and the price is down roughly 80 percent from its high of $20,000. Nobody knows whether and when it will see these lofty heights again.
As a result, millions of speculators have been burned, and big institutions haven’t showed up to bridge the gap.
This also happened on a smaller scale in 2013 after a similar 100x run-up, and it was necessary.

Time to Catch Up

What most speculators and even some serious proponents of the independent and decentralized monetary system don’t understand: Bitcoin needs these pauses to make improvements in its infrastructure.
Exchanges, which could not handle the trading volumes at the height of the frenzy and did not return customer service inquiries, can take a breather and upgrade their systems and hire capable people.
The technology itself needs to make progress and this needs time. Projects like the lightning network, a system which delivers instant bitcoin payments at very little cost and at virtually unlimited scale is now only available to expert programmers.
A higher valuation is only justified if these improvements reach the mass market.
And since we live in a world where everything financial is tightly regulated, for better or worse, this area also needs to catch up, since regulators are chronically behind the curve of technological progress.
And of course, there is bitcoin mining. The vital infrastructure behind securing the bitcoin network and processing its transactions has been concentrated in too few hands and in too few places, most notably China, which still hosts about 70 percent of the mining capacity.

The Case For Mining

Critics have always complained that bitcoin mining consumes “too much” electricity, right now about as much as the Czech Republic. In energy terms this is around 65 terawatt hours or 230,000,000 gigajoules, costing $3.3 billion dollars according to estimates by Digiconomist.
For the non-physicists among us, this is around as much as consumed by six million energy-guzzling U.S. households per year.
All those estimates are imprecise because the aggregate cannot know how much energy each of the different bitcoin miners consumes and how much that electricity costs. But they are a reasonable rough estimate.
So it’s worth exploring why mining is necessary to begin with and whether the electricity consumption is justified.
Anything and everything humans do consumes resources. The question then is always: Is it worth it? And: Who decides?
This question then leads to the next question: Is it worth having and using money? Most people would argue yes, because using money instead of barter in fact makes economic transactions faster and cheaper and thus saves resources, natural and human.

_Merchants exchange goods with the inhabitants of Tidore, Indonesia, circa 1550. Barter was supplanted by using money because it is more efficient. (Archive/Getty Images)_If we are generously inclined, we will grant bitcoin the status of a type of money or at least currency as it meets the general requirements of being recognizable, divisible, portable, durable, is accepted in exchange for other goods and services, and in this case it is even limited in supply.
So having any type of money has a price, whether it’s gold, dollar bills, or numbers on the screen of your online banking system. In the case of bitcoin, it’s the electricity and the capital for the computing equipment, as well as the human resources to run these operations.
If we think having money in general is a good idea and some people value the decentralized and independent nature of bitcoin then it would be worth paying for verifying transactions on the bitcoin network as well as keeping the network secure and sound: Up until the point where the resources consumed would outweigh the efficiency benefits. Just like most people don’t think it’s a bad idea to use credit cards and banks, which consume electricity too.
However, bitcoin is a newcomer and this is why it’s being scrutinized even more so than the old established players.

Different Money, Different Costs

How many people know how much electricity, human lives, and other resources gold mining consumes or has consumed in the course of history? What about the banking system? Branches, servers, air-conditioning, staff? What about printing dollar notes and driving them around in armored trucks?
What about the social effects of monetary mismanagement of bank and government money like inflation as well as credit deflations? Gold gets a pass here.
Most people haven’t asked that question, which is why it’s worth pointing out the only comprehensive study done on the topic in 2014. In “An Order of Magnitude” the engineer Hass McCook analyzes the different money systems and reaches mind-boggling conclusions.
The study is a bit dated and of course the aggregations are also very rough estimates, but the ball park numbers are reasonable and the methodology sound.
In fact, according to the study, bitcoin is the most economic of all the different forms of money.
Gold mining in 2014 used 475 million GJ, compared to bitcoin’s 230 million in 2018. The banking system in 2014 used 2.3 billion gigajoules.
Over 100 people per year die trying to mine gold. But mining costs more than electricity. It consumes around 300,000 liters of water per kilogram of gold mined as well as 150 kilogram (330 pounds) of cyanide and 1500 tons of waste and rubble.
The international banking system has been used in all kinds of fraudulent activity throughout history: terrorist financing, money laundering, and every other criminal activity under the sun at a cost of trillions of dollars and at an order of magnitude higher than the same transactions done with cryptocurrency and bitcoin.
And of course, while gold has a relatively stable value over time, our bank and government issued money lost about 90 percent of its purchasing power over the last century, because it can be created out of thin air. This leads to inflation and a waste of physical and human resources because it distorts the process of capital allocation.

_The dollar has lost more than 90 percent of its value since the creation of the Federal Reserve in 1913. (Source: St. Louis Fed)_This is on top of the hundreds of thousands of bank branches, millions of ATMs and employees which all consume electricity and other resources, 10 times as much electricity alone as the bitcoin network.
According to monetary philosopher Saifedean Ammous, author of “The Bitcoin Standard,” the social benefit of hard money, i.e. money that can’t be printed by government decree, cannot even be fathomed; conversely, the true costs of easy money—created by government fiat and bank credit—are difficult to calculate.
According to Ammous, bitcoin is the hardest money around, even harder than gold because its total supply is capped, whereas the gold supply keeps increasing at about 1-2 percent every year.
“Look at the era of the classical gold standard, from 1871, the end of the Franco–Prussian War, until the beginning of World War I. There’s a reason why this is known as the Golden Era, the Gilded Age, and La Belle Epoque. It was a time of unrivaled human flourishing all over the world. Economic growth was everywhere. Technology was being spread all over the world. Peace and prosperity were increasing everywhere around the world. Technological innovations were advancing.
“I think this is no coincidence. What the gold standard allowed people to do is to have a store of value that would maintain its value in the future. And that gave people a low time preference, that gave people the incentive to think of the long term, and that made people want to invest in things that would pay off over the long term … bitcoin is far closer to gold. It is a digital equivalent of gold,” he said in an interview with The Epoch Times.
Of course, contrary to the gold standard that Ammous talks about, bitcoin doesn’t have a track record of being sound money in practice. In theory it meets all the criteria, but in the real world it hasn’t been adopted widely and has been so volatile as to be unusable as a reliable store of value or as the underlying currency of a productive lending market.
The proponents argue that over time, these problems will be solved the same way gold spread itself throughout the monetary sphere replacing copper and seashells, but even Ammous concedes the process may take decades and the outcome is far from certain. Gold is the safe bet for sound money, bitcoin has potential.
There is another measure where bitcoin loses out, according to a recent study by researchers from the Oak Ridge Institute in Cincinnati, Ohio.
It is the amount of energy expended per dollar for different monetary instruments. One dollar worth of bitcoin costs 17 megajoules to mine versus five for gold and seven for platinum. But the study omits the use of cyanide, water, and other physical resources in mining physical metals.
In general, the comparisons in dollar terms go against bitcoin because it is worth relatively less, only $73 billion in total at the time of writing. An issue that could be easily fixed at a higher price, but a higher price is only justified if the infrastructure improves, adoption increases, volatility declines, and the network proves its resilience to attacks over time.
In the meantime, market participants still value the fact they can own a currency independent of the government, completely digital, easily fungible, and limited in supply, and relatively decentralized. And the market as a whole is willing to pay a premium for these factors reflected in the higher per dollar prices for mining bitcoin.

The Creativity of Bitcoin Mining

But where bitcoin mining lacks in scale, it makes up for it in creativity.
In theory—and in practice—bitcoin mining can be done anywhere where there is cheap electricity. So bitcoin mining operations can be conducted not where people are (banking) or where government is (fiat cash) or where gold is (gold mining)—it can be done everywhere where there is cheap electricity
Some miners are flocking to the heat of the Texan desert where gas is virtually available for free, thanks to another oil revolution.
Other miners go to places where there is cheap wind, water, or other renewable energy.
This is because they don’t have to build bank branches, printing presses, and government buildings, or need to put up excavators and conveyor belts to dig gold out of the ground.
All they need is internet access and a home for the computers that look like a shipping container, each one of which has around 200 specialized bitcoin mining computers in them.
“The good thing about bitcoin mining is that it doesn’t matter where on earth a transaction happens, we can verify it in our data center here. The miners are part of the decentralized philosophy of bitcoin, it’s completely independent of your location as well,” said Moritz Jäger, chief technology officer at bitcoin Mining company Northern Bitcoin AG.

Centralized Mining

But so far, this decentralization hasn’t worked out as well as it sounds in theory.
Because Chinese local governments had access to subsidized electricity, it was profitable for officials to cut deals with bitcoin mining companies and supply them with cheap electricity in exchange for jobs and cutbacks. Sometimes the prices were as low as 2 dollar cents to 4 dollar cents per kilowatt hour.
This is why the majority of bitcoin mining is still concentrated in China (around 70 percent) where it was the most profitable, but only because the Chinese central planners subsidized the price of electricity.
This set up led to the by and large unwanted result that the biggest miner of bitcoin, a company called Bitmain, is also the biggest manufacturer of specialized computing equipment for bitcoin mining. The company reported revenues of $2.8 billion for the first half of 2018.

Tourists walk on the dunes near a power plant in Xiangshawan Desert in Ordos of Inner Mongolia, in this file photo. bitcoin miners have enjoyed favorable electricity rates in places like Ordos for a long time. (Feng Li/Getty Images)Centralized mining is a problem because whenever there is one player or a conglomerate of players who control more than 50 percent of the network computing power, they could theoretically crash the network by spending the same bitcoin twice, the so called “double spending problem.“
They don’t have an incentive to do so because it would probably ruin the bitcoin price and their business, but it’s better not to have to rely on one group of people controlling an entire money system. After all, we have that exact same system with central banking and bitcoin was set up as a decentralized alternative.
So far, no player or conglomerate ever reached that 51 percent threshold, at least not since bitcoin’s very early days, but many market participants always thought Bitmain’s corner of the market is a bit too close for comfort.
This favorable environment for Chinese bitcoin mining has been changing with a crack down on local government electricity largess as well as a crackdown on cryptocurrency.
Bitcoin itself and mining bitcoin remain legal in China but cryptocurrency exchanges have been banned since late 2017.
But more needs to be done for bitcoin to become independent of the caprice of a centralized oppressive regime and local government bureaucrats.

Northern Bitcoin Case Study

Enter Northern Bitcoin AG. The company isn’t the only one which is exploring mining opportunities with renewable energies in locations other than China.
But it is special because of the extraordinary set up it has for its operations, the fact that it is listed on the stock exchange in Germany, and the opportunities for scaling it discovered.
The operations of Northern Bitcoin combine the beauties of bitcoin and capitalism in one.
Like Texas has a lot of oil and free gas and it makes sense to use the gas rather than burn it, Norway has a lot of water, especially water moving down the mountains due to rainfall and melting snow.
And it makes sense to use the power of the movement of the water, channel it through pipes into generators to create very cheap and almost unlimited electricity. Norway generates north of 95 percent of its total electricity from hydropower.

A waterfall next to a hydropowerplant near Sandane, Norway, Oct. 25, 2018. (Valentin Schmid/The Epoch Times)Capitalism does not distinguish between renewable and fossil. It uses what is the most expedient. In this case, it is clearly water in Norway, and gas in Texas.
As a side note on the beauties of real capital and the fact that capital and the environment need not be enemies, the water in one of the hydropowerplants close to the Northern Bitcoin facility is piped through a generator made in 1920 by J.M. Voith AG, a company from Heidenheim Germany.
The company was established in 1867 and is still around today. The generator was produced in 1920 and is still producing electricity today.

Excess Power

In the remote regions of Northern Norway, there aren’t that many people or industry who would use the electricity. And rather than transport it over hundreds of miles to the industrial centers of Europe, the industries of the future are moving to Norway to the source of the cheap electricity.
Of course, it is not just bitcoin mining, but other data and computing heavy operations like server farms for cloud computing that can be neatly packaged into one of those containers and shipped up north.
“The containers are beautiful. They are produced in the middle of Germany where the hardware is enabled and tested. Then we put it on a truck and send it up here. When the truck arrives on the outside we lift it on the container vehicle. Two hours after the container arrives, it’s in the container rack. And 40 hours later we enable the cooling, network, power, other systems, and it’s online,” said Mats Andersson, a spokesman for the Lefdal Mine data center in Måløy, Norway, where Northern Bitcoin has its operations. Plug and play.

A Northern Bitcoin data container inside the Lefdal Mine data center, in Måløy, Norway. (Northern Bitcoin)If the cheap electricity wasn’t enough—around 5 cents per kilowatt hour compared to 17 cents in Germany—Norway also provides the perfect storage for these data containers, which are normally racked up in open air parks above the ground.
Also here, the resource allocation is beautiful. Instead of occupying otherwise useful and beautiful parcels of land and nature, the Northern Bitcoin containers and others are stored in the old Lefdal olivine mine.
Olivine is a mineral used for steel production and looks green. Very fitting. Hence also the name of the data center: Lefdal Mine.
“We take the green mineral out and we take the green IT in,” said Andersson.

Efficiency, Efficiency

Using the old mine as storage for the data center makes the whole process even more resource efficient.
Why? So far, we’ve only been talking about bitcoin mining using a lot of energy. But what for? Before you have actually seen the process in action—and it is similar for other computing operations—you cannot imagine how bizarre it is.
Most of the electricity is used to prevent the computers from overheating. So it’s not even the processors themselves; it’s the fans which cool the computer that use the most juice.
This is where the mine helps, because it’s rather cool 160 meters (525 feet) below sea level; certainly cooler than in the Texas desert.
But it gets even better. On top of the air blow-cooling the computer, the Lefdal data center uses a fresh water system to pump through the containers in pipes.
The fans can then circulate air over the cool pipes which transfer the heat to the water. One can feel the difference when touching the different pipes.
The fresh water closed circle loop then completes the “green” or resource efficiency cycle by transferring its heat to ice cold water from the nearby Fjord.
The water is sucked in through a pipe from the Fjord, the heat gets transferred without the water being mixed, and the water flows back to the Fjord, without any impact on the environment.
To top it all off, the mine has natural physical security far better than open air data centers and is even protected from an electromagnetic pulse blast because it’s underground.

_The Nordfjord near Måløy, Norway. The Lefdal data center takes the cold water from the fjord and uses it to cool the computer inside the mine. (Valentin Schmid/The Epoch Times)_Company Dynamics

Given this superlative set up, Northern Bitcoin wants to ramp up production as fast as possible at the Lefdal mine and other similar places in Norway, which have more mountains where data centers can be housed.
At the moment, Northern Bitcoin has 15 containers with 210 mining machines each. The 15 containers produce around 5 bitcoin per day at a total cost of around $2,500 dollars at the end of November 2018 and after the difficulty of solving the math problems went down by ~17 percent.
Most of it is for electricity; the rest is for leasing the containers, renting the mine space, buying and writing off the mining computers, personnel, overhead, etc.
Even at the current relatively depressed prices of around $4000, that’s a profit of $1500 per bitcoin or $7,500 per day.
But the goal is to ramp it up to 280 containers until 2019, producing 100 bitcoin per day. Again, the company is in the sweet spot to do this.
As opposed to the beginning of the year when one could not procure a mining computer from Bitmain even if one’s life depended on it, the current bear market has made them cheap and relatively available both new and second had from miners who had to cease operations because they can’t produce at low bitcoin prices.

Northern Bitcoin containers inside the Lefdal Mine data center in Måløy, Norway. (Northern Bitcoin)What about the data shipping containers? They are manufactured by a company called Rittal who is the world market leader. So it helps that the owner of Rittal also owns 30 percent of the Lefdal mine, providing preferential access to the containers.
Northern Bitcoin said it has enough capital available for the intermediate goal of ramping up to 50 containers until the end of year but may tap the capital markets again for the next step.
The company can also take advantage of the lower German corporate tax rate because revenue is only recorded when the bitcoin are sold in Germany, not when they are mined in Norway.
Of course, every small-cap stock—especially bitcoin companies—have their peculiarities and very high risks. As an example, Northern Bitcoin’s financial statements, although public, aren’t audited.
The equipment in the Lefdal mine in Norway is real and the operations are controlled by the Lefdal personnel, but one has to rely on exclusive information from the company for financials and cost figures, so buyer beware.

Norway Powerhouse?

Northern Bitcoin wants to have 280 containers, representing around 5 percent of the network’s computing power.
But the Lefdal mine alone has a capacity to power and cool 1,500 containers in a 200 megawatt facility, once it is fully built out.
“Here you have all the space, power, and cooling that you need. … Here you can grow,” said Lefdal’s Andersson.

A mine shaft in the Lefdal Mine data center in Måløy, Norway. The whole mine will have a capacity for 1500 containers once fully built out. (Valentin Schmid/The Epoch Times)The Norwegian government was behind an initiative to bring computing power to Norway and make it one of the prime destinations for data centers at the beginning of this decade.
To that effect, the local governments own part of the utility companies which operate the power plants and own part of the Lefdal Mine and other locations. But even without notable subsidies (i.e. cash payments to companies), market players were able to figure it out, for everybody’s benefit.
The utilities win because they can sell their cheap electricity close to home. The computing companies like IBM and Northern Bitcoin win because they can get cheap electricity, storage, and security. Data center operators like Lefdal win because they can charge rent for otherwise unused and unneeded space.
However, in a recent about face, the central government in Oslo has decided to remove cryptocurrency miners from the list of companies which pay a preferential tax rate on electricity consumption.
Normally, energy intensive companies, including data centers, pay a preferential tax on electricity consumed of 0.48 øre ($0.00056 ). According to a report by Norwegian media Aftenposten, this tax will rise to 16.58 øre ($0.019) in 2019 for cryptocurrency miners exclusively.
The argument by left wing politician Lars Haltbrekken who sponsored the initiative: “Norway cannot continue to provide huge tax incentives for the most dirty form of cryptocurrency output […] [bitcoin] requires a lot of energy and generates large greenhouse gas emissions globally.”
Since Norway generates its electricity using hydro, precisely the opposite is true: No greenhouse gas emissions, or any emissions for that matter would be produced, if all cryptomining was done in Norway. As opposed to China, where mining is done with coal and with emissions.
But not only in Norway is the share of renewable and emission free energy high. According to research by Coinshares, Bitcoin’s consumes about 77.6 percent of its energy in the form of renewables globally.
However self-defeating the arguments against bitcoin mining in Norway, the political initiative is moving forward. What it means for Northern Bitcoin is not clear, as they house their containers in Lefdal’s mixed data center, which also has other clients, like IBM.
“It’s not really decided yet; there are still big efforts from IT sectors and parties who are trying to change it. If the decision is taken it might apply for pure crypto sites rather than mixed data centers, like ours,” said Lefdal’s Andersson.
Even in the worst-case scenario, it would mean an increase from ~5 cents to ~6.9 cents per kilowatt hour, or 30 percent more paid on the electricity by Northern Bitcoin, which at ~$3250 would still rank it among the most competitive producers in the world.
Coinshares estimates the average production price at $6,800 per Bitcoin at $0,05 per kilowatt hour of electricity and an 18-months depreciation schedule, but concedes that a profitable miner could “[depreciate] mining gear over 24-30 months, or [pay] less for mining gear than our estimates.”
Jäger says Northern Bitcoin depreciates the equipment over three years and has obtained very favorable prices from Bitmain, making its production much more competitive than the average despite the same cost of electricity. In addition, the natural cooling in the mine also reduces electricity costs overall.

Cheap Producer Advantage

At the moment, however, the tax could be the least of any miners worry, as the bitcoin price is in free-fall.
But what happens when the price crashes further? Suffice it to say that there was bitcoin mining when the dollar price was less than 1 cent and there will be bitcoin mining at lower prices thanks to the design of the network.
Mao Shixing, the founder of mining pool F2pool estimated 600,000 miners have shut down since the November crash in price, according to a report by Coindesk.
As it should be in a competitive system, the most energy intensive and obsolete machines are shut down first.
As with every other commodity, when the price drops, some miners will leave the market, leaving space for cheaper competitors to capture a bigger share. But with bitcoin this is a bit simpler than with copper or gold for example.
When a big copper player goes bankrupt, its competitors have to ramp up production and increase cost to increase their market share. With bitcoin, if 3,000 computers get taken off the total mining pool, they won’t be able to mine the approximately 5 bitcoin any longer.
However, because the difficulty of solving the computationally intensive cryptographic tasks of bitcoin decreases automatically when there are fewer computers engaged in the task, the other players just have to leave their machines running at the same rate for the same cost and they will split the 5 bitcoin among them.
“The moment the price goes down, our production price will go down as well,” said Jäger, a process that already happened from November to December when the difficulty decreased twice in November and the beginning of December.
This naturally favors players like Northern Bitcoin, which are producing at the lower end of the cost spectrum. They will be the ones who shut down last.
And this is a good thing. The more companies like Northern Bitcoin, and countries like Norway—even with the extra tax—the more decentralized the bitcoin system.
The more computers there are in different hands mining bitcoin, the more secure the system becomes, because it will be ever more difficult for one player to reach the 50 percent threshold to crash the system. It is this decentralized philosophy which has kept the bitcoin system running for 10 years. Whether at $1 or $20,000.
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