On the Depth of Ignorance in Relation to Bitcoin — 31 Comments

  1. I have two questions about bitcoin.

    1) What do people think about the bitcoin self directed IRA (such as

    2) How does one value bitcoin?

    When I look at the graph of bitcoin’s price it is very high related to its earlier prices which causes me discomfort.

    When I see silver is $16 I have an idea about its floor and ceiling (~$4 and ~$64?). I have no idea how to do the same for bitcoin based on its limited history.

    Looking at how for most of its history bitcoin was < $500 I have a hard time feeling safe at $6k

    Do you have additional information that could explain why the hockey stick shaped curve that started around 2017 would continue to rise and not instead revert to the mean?

    • 1. I don’t like it! God knows what the US department of making us sad will decide to do in regard to regulation of BTC in the future. If you keep it in a wallet, it is yours, no one can get to it. If I did it, I would hold no more than 10% of crypto in it. I personally think the concept is designed to get people to dump retirement money into BTC, and while I am all for some of that I am not for a lot of that. Some would be may be 5% of retirement savings.

      2. BTC value at current time is a direct reflection of market forces on a scarce asset. As I’ve said if 5% of Americans wanted 1 BTC there is not enough to go around at that point. So BTC would literally go though the roof in response to it. There are also high volume traders when they can make 15% on a trade they take it, that will drop price soon afterward, most of the time.

      People buy in heavy ahead of forks because it is “free money” many exit the position to cash after that. Once that happens you’d expect a drop after a second small bounce. Joe gets his forked coin, converts to BTC and sells for cash, also exists the surplus position he took before the fork, but it hasn’t worked that way so far, it has held and continued to rise.

      You are talking “technical analysis” way to complicated to explain in a comment but one easy indicator is the moving average and the current deviation from said same, and any reasons or lack there of from that moving average.

      I would ask you this though, why is silver at 16 something you consider a bottom? What makes you believe that?

    • Thanks for the quick followup. I have a couple of responses to the above questions.

      1) It sounds like you are criticizing IRAs in general. I have my own reservations about IRAs, but have decided to keep the one I have.

      bitcoin in an IRA sounds like a good diversification, but bitcoinira charges way too high a fee for small investments. I am wondering if anyone else has other opinions/options.

      2) I don’t understand your comment and you are probably right about it being too difficult to explain in a comment but here goes.

      I don’t really understand moving averages. Isn’t that a rate of growth? I don’t understand how that relates to what bitcoin might reasonably be priced at in 5 years.

      I would assume that in a hundred years we could look back at bitcoin and
      say that in the last 100 years the bitcoin low was $250 and the high was x. This way we could tell how risky the current price is.

      In terms of silver I have no idea if $16 is a bottom. When I look at 100 years of silver pricing there are plenty of times it has been lower/higher than now. Therefore, although I am worried that it may go down I hope that eventually it will go up.

      When I look at bitcoin pricing I see no points higher than it is now. I realize it can continue to trend up but I don’t know how anyone can predict that with the amount of data out now.

      Thanks again for all of your honesty and compassion

      • On point one, no I am not anti IRA, though I am pretty if you don’t do a roth and you can, you hate money.

        What I am against is putting things into an IRA that are specifically designed to be private and out of the governments control, same reason I am heavily opposed to physical metal IRAs. Such things make almost no sense. Here I have something “they” don’t know about it, so let me make it as public and regulated as possible is all I see here.

        Things like IRAs are vehicles, some investments go in them well, some don’t. Don’t advertise shit you don’t have to.

        Second point, if you don’t understand moving average than any attempt to further discuss technical analysis would be like trying to discuss algebra with someone that doesn’t understand multiplication. It is a basic building block of TA.

        So basically what you are saying above is you have no more idea what silver will be worth in 5 years than you do as to what bitcoin will be worth?

        Seriously something having been higher is no promise that it will ever do that again, held onto any Yahoo stock since 2000 waiting for it to go back to 300. Yahoo broke 300 a share just before the merger, today it sits at well, nothing Verizon bought them for a song. Their stock never went over 50 bucks after it crashed and spent most of its time in the 20s.

        What if you applied your logic to a stock like google at the end of 2012 google sat at 384 dollars a share and had never been higher, ever. By early 2013 it hit 455 and since then has never seen such a low price again today it sits at 1042.

        Price in 5 years of anything, silver, the Dow, Bitcoin, no one has a fucking clue and anyone claiming they do is a liar, stupid or both.

  2. All I know is I started with a $2000 investment made on Coinbase, because I’d be OK losing that amount, and as of this minute I now have $3253.47

    • Which makes me think of all the people that say, “I wish I got in at the beginning when there was still a lot of opportunity”.

    • Way to go. Does this make you want to invest more or do you think you will cash out as soon as you start seeing dips?

      • My current holdings are long term holdings, if the price went down 2K I’d not even blink given how up I’d still be.

  3. The main thing that makes me worry about Bitcoin is that the main reason that it is increasing is that people invest in it because it is increasing. That is a standard bubble.

    I agree with many of the concepts you talk about including that investing in Bitcoin is a gamble at this point and only put money in it that you are willing to lose. I also agree with the concept that something is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it, in other words, just because you put in money into Bitcoin and it says it is worth x amount now, in the end, it only matters what it is worth when you take it out – like Peter Schiff (sp) says. I don’t agree with all of Schiff’s analysis though. I think there is inherent value in Bitcoin in that it can be traded between parties for free over seas (easily traded), is deflationary, is free from direct government manipulation (like the fed reserve).

    Things that worry me about Bitcoin. It’s not anonymous. It can’t handle large amounts of transactions. So, it can’t scale, making it more like gold rather than silver or dollars.

    • But Jon, bubbles and tulip mania are not the same thing. And bubbles are subjective! What does a pop mean, if BTC ends the year at say 4500 did the bubble pop or did simply short term speculators take profits.

      Consider this, one stock General Electric has how many outstanding shares? The answer is over 9 Billion, you want to talk about printing money! 9 billion shares.

      There are at current time about 14 million bitcoins and about a third are estimated to be lost. So call it 11 million. Do you know what that means?

      The total volume of tradable BTC today is about .14% of a single major security on the Dow.

      And a few things….

      “Its not anonymous” – It can be, it will be if the market demands it, other alt coins fill that role. Just because you can see an address and a coin does not mean you know who owns it. There are ways to exploit this further. Besides most of the wealth in the world isn’t anonymous, most far less so than bitcoin.

      “It can’t handle large amounts of transactions.” – This is actually very easy to fix if the community decides it is necessary and frankly it isn’t exactly true. “Large amounts” is a subjective term. There are on average 250-300K btc transactions a day right now, that isn’t Visa but I don’t see BTC as designed to replace Visa. Again with shapeshift you have alt coins in seconds to fulfill that roll.

      “So, it can’t scale, making it more like gold rather than silver or dollars.” – Well first take silver out of there because silver is more like gold than dollars. But I would submit it is actually that bitcoin is more like digital gold, which is a lot better than gold. And “it can’t scale” is also subjective, scale to what, so you can buy double mint gum with it?

      And frankly you can already do that! Because when something is open source if the market wants it the market gets it.

      There you go all the scaling and reduction of fees you could ever want with BTC buy all the packs of gum and ice teas you want with it.

      How? They provide liquidity and run one big transaction a day.

      My concern for bitcoin is not the tech, it is government back lash and can some alt coin become the new gorilla. Of course the first one will be met with a software arms race that the .gov can’t win, the second is a HUGE opportunity. Note that I don’t see it yet! Several are close, none are close enough to call.

    • Thanks for the reply Jack. Not that I wasn’t calling it a Tulip bubble. I disagree with that analogy too :-).

      I just don’t understand why Dash hasn’t picked up more momentum. Since it is anonymous and is built to scale without any tricks. The main reason I use Bitcoin is because of where I can buy stuff from Amazon with a 15% discount. I put money in Bitcoin at $700/bitcoin. Just a few hundred dollars and I pretty much get everything for free from Amazon now. Granted I don’t spend a lot of money to begin with.

      So, I’m a fan of Bitcoin and what promise there is. But it just seems like a bubble right now because people are solely putting money into it just because it is going up and no other reason. This worries me. Eventually I would like to replace some of my gold investment with bitcoin or some other coin. It seems like an easier investment than dealing with gold. So, maybe 10% gold and 5% digital coin.

      • “So, I’m a fan of Bitcoin and what promise there is. But it just seems like a bubble right now because people are solely putting money into it just because it is going up and no other reason.”

        Let me tell you why it doesn’t worry me.

        First I don’t expect no corrections. But a correction is not a bubble. The Dot com bubble was a bubble. The entire market bought in when it corrected what was there to stop the fall? Nothing and no one. About 56% of Americans hold stock. So over half the country was in some way bought into the dot com bubble.

        What percentage of Americans own BTC? Our best guess and it is ONLY a guess is 3.3 million people in the world own bitcoin. That is a fraction of a percent of the world.

        Is the price higher than it should be for now, yes, does that equal bubble no.

        Is my current recommendation a buy recommendation? No buy on the dips, but a dip may not be as big as you are currently expecting.

        • OK, that makes sense to me. I guess the future will tell. I’d still like to see more practical uses of it. Which there are more and more every day. We’ll see. I’m typically not an early adopter of things like this since I’m more conservative with these types of things. But I’m not usually far behind the early adopters.

          Like when Microsoft release new Visual Studio developer tools, I like to wait until the fix the issues and then start using them. Unless the benefits outweigh the risks. Which means sometimes I end up losing out, which is fine.

    • As for the Shift Card. There doesn’t seem to be any advantage since it costs me money. A regular credit card I get 2% or so for using it.

        • That’s not an argument 🙂 Could you expound? If you aren’t getting money back and it costs you to get the card, then why use it? Why not just keep the money in Bitcoin and let it increase? I don’t see the incentive to use the card? at least gives me a discount to use Bitcoin.

        • Well first you are comparing apples to oranges. One is USD the other is Crypto. You’ll say that doesn’t matter and I will show you your flawed logic when you do.

        • What we are talking about is the conversion back and forth between Cryptocurrency and USD. It costs money to convert to BC, then it costs money to convert back. What do I gain for doing all that work? Granted if I automate the conversion it isn’t that much, until I have to file for taxes.

        • No that is not what we were discussing at all, we were discussing your objections to bitcoin, it can’t scale, can’t handle large amounts of transactions, etc.

          So I pointed out that the shift card for example solves that problem. one would not put USD into Coinbase and buy btc, just to spend it for each transaction, that is dumb.

          In the spirit todays show read this line to the music in Meatloafs For Crying Out Loud that will be on today’s show. “And can’t you see your flawed logic, about to fall apart”.

          Sorry I have my voice back so I am in great fuck with people mood in a very happy way today. But do you see how I am now not only right about the original argument which was “bitcoin can’t scale due to fees and transaction limits”. Simply the market already has that covered and shift is only one option by the way.

          But you tried to be clever and drag a 2% suckers rebate into it. Okay fine, lets assume for you that you are one of the .5% that really always pays on time and really doesn’t pay fees and interest. You probabally are, but you know damn well that doesn’t apply to the masses which is what we are discussing here. But let me give you that, say we are only talking those that pay on time.

          Okay are you really going to try to tell me that over say the past three years if you kept money in bitcoin in large enough amounts to be like a checking account, always having more money in it than needed to pay bills which all responsible adults do, people like you that pay their bills on time right. Had you done that, are you really going to try to make the case that the earnings on the float based on appreciation of BTC would not have largely exceeded your crummy 2% rebate?

          Look I like cash back, I pay a lot of shit with my PayPal debit card and so long as I use it as a credit card I also get a rebate every month. And for stuff I am going to pay for with cash it is what I do.

          See though you tried to be clever, that 2% on USDs apples, can’t compare with the appreciated value of BTCs Orange’s float in your scenario. The sift card is not for a person to load up with USD, it is for accessing BTC that they hold or earn. for instance I earn 200-300 or more on BTC a month depending on people buying MSB with crypto and referral fees from Coinbase. If I want to spend it with someone that doesn’t take btc I use that feature, if they do take crypto, I generally use the Jaxx wallet and pay in zcash or DASH.

        • Jack you said yourself that with BTC you don’t put money in it without being willing to lose it. With a traditional bank and 2% cash back I don’t have to worry about losing half my money. So, with that conservative outlook I also miss a potential upswing in how much BTC is worth. So, each person has to weigh how much risk they are willing to take.

          No probs about wanting to mess around with people. I’m finding the conversation enlightening. I am continually tempted to put more money into BTC, but being conservative with money I have not increased the amount I have in there.

          Also, I’m glad you made $10 off me signing up with Coinbase. I’ve made far more than that back! I wish I just knew the future then I would be willing to put a lot more in.

        • You are still moving the goal posts. Stop it, your objections were destroyed.

          On caution with how much is in BTC, sure, that is not relevant the discussion. The 2% was not either! But you brought it up and it happened to work against you. Suffice to say with tech like Shift Card BTC can scale just fine.

        • Well, having a centralized place in order to scale BTC seems to contradict the decentralized nature of BTC. That’s a bit of a hack. Not a true fix to the problem of scaling 🙂

        • No you keep trying to wiggle out of this, sorry that dog doesn’t hunt. There are dozens of similar services and if more are needed, they will show up.

          This is exactly how BTC was designed to work, anyone can develop anything to add to it. Open source FTW, sorry your argument is invalid.

  4. Love it when Jack gets his dander up. Reminds me of the old days he did the podcast from his car…sigh…lol

    • You know I would just prefer the guy said, “I think you are promoting bitcoin because doing so makes you money because you promote it”.

      I’d tell him to fuck off just the same but respect him more than asking a question you know the answer to in a round about passive aggressive bullshit way.

    • I understand Jack. I myself have hard time understanding blockchain, but not being an ass about it. There is one thing I do know. Like Ben and you said Cryptocurrecy is the first big App for Blockchain. Like Lotus 1-2-3 was for the personal computer and Email was for the internet. I may not completely understand it, but I can tell it’ going to be huge and very important in the future. I wanted to make sure the last years I have on this earth I wanted to be a part of it and not just looking back one day and regretting not pulling the trigger. I already missed the big run up in Bitcoin and other Cryptos. This mining is more my style.
      Thanks for your show. I’ve been listening from episode 7…

      • “I already missed the big run up in Bitcoin and other Cryptos”

        Heard that when BTC was 100 dollars, heard it when it was 500 dollars, heard it when it was 1,000 dollars, etc. etc. etc. etc. etc.

        Don’t get me wrong I’d not recommend a big buy in today, though if you wait for a dip you can likely make 10-20% just on the continued run up to the next fork.

  5. Here is an easy way to look at it.
    Bitcoin uses blockchain technology. Blockchain technology is a ledger system that all miners (people who use the system) verify as accurate and true. If someone were to try to change the ledger, then the rest of the community using the ledger would reject it (please read the Bitcoin Whitepaper for further details). For example, if I own 1 BTC and send it to Jack, the blockchain acknowledges the transaction and makes it part of the blockchain. If I try to respend that same BTC, the blockchain says that BTC was already spent and denies the transaction. It is simple math where nothing can be created out of thin air. Bitcoin code does not allow it.

    This keeps hackers out because the computer hashing power to break into and change the ledger and gain an overwhelming amount of hashpower to control 51% of the blockchain is impossible. The math is crazy, and grows exponentially harder as time goes on.

    Now, that we understand Blockchain = Ledger system, lets take a look at Bitcoin. You can buy bitcoin and your address is public. Everyone can see your address, who makes deposits to your address and where you send money to from your address. This is different from coin to coin, and different coins use different technologies to make that process more complicated and private.
    The government can see your money with Bitcoin. There is no doubt about that; they just cannot touch your money without your private keys. That is what scares them. They cannot take your Bitcoin. They cannot garnish your Bitcoin. They cannot devalue your Bitcoin. All of this scares people in power and people who have oppressed others by controlling the money system.

    Looking only at Bitcoin (no other coin), here is what is unique. There is a finite supply (kind of like gold) of 21 million (Read the Bitcoin whitepaper). Many of the coins have been lost (~6 million). How do we know this? Because the blockchain (ledger system) lets us see your addresses. The addresses assuming ~6 million have been lost have no activity for years. That means no deposits, no withdrawals, no transfers, etc. it is safe to say that if someone believed in Bitcoin at $1, then they would really believe in it at $6500, right?

    Next, the code is immutable unless there is a 95% consensus. That means no one is going to change it. Government cannot change the laws of Bitcoin!

    Bitcoin can be fictionalized up to 8 decimal places. So I can send fractions of a penny. When you think about the ability to charge fractions of pennies for advertisements, youtube videos, tv shows, etc, there is real potential to gain profits.

    There is no proof of owner required for Bitcoin. Every person on Earth can have an address (or account so to say). No one can turn you away from being an owner. There are no annual fees. Yes there may be transaction fees, but the long term holding growth more than rewards me for those fees. I can transfer 10,000 USD to anyone for about $1. Look at how much Moneygram charges. It is like $7. Think about migrant workers who work in the US and send money home to their families. Just for using Bitcoin, they are making money. Plus the family doesn’t have to travel to a store to pick it up. The user doesn’t have to wait in line to send it. Bitcoin can be sent at anytime of day. Bitcoin doesn’t take off holidays, doesn’t sleep at night, and definitely works overtime, but doesn’t get paid for it!

    Finally, look at those calling it a scam. Jamie Dimon, who is the face of JP Morgan. However, it has been proved that his daughter was purchasing Bitcoin while he was saying those comments (

    Hope this helps. Anyone with further question, please let me know.

    Bitcoin Whitepaper
    Jamie Dimon

  6. Oh, and I just wanted to say Jack, you’re such a jerk! You got me into crypto back in September of 2016. I have returned a 10X return on one position and a couple of 3-5X on others. Now I discovered what it means to be independent and free. My savings account (PIVX coin) earns a private guaranteed 7% interest; however, returns have been much higher.
    I hate that you have made my life, my family, and my future generations so much better off!

  7. For all those calling alt coins and even Bitcoin a scam….US currency is the biggest “shitcoin” around.