As another US Senate Committee on Banking convened this
week, the topic inevitably turned to Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies once again. This
time the key take from the proceedings was that banning Bitcoin would not be
possible even if they wanted to.
Bitcoin a Global Innovation
Regulators have been riled recently by Facebook’s ambitions
to become the world’s biggest bank. This has had the unfortunate side effect of
putting decentralized cryptocurrencies in a negative light. Several congress
hearings have taken place over the past couple of weeks to discuss the
implications of allowing one of the world’s most influential internet
monopolies issuing and controlling its own money.
Naturally the reaction to this from most lawmakers and
politicians has been one of extreme caution. Their stance on Bitcoin, however,
may be warming as they realize that it would be virtually impossible to ban it.
According to Forbes,
US politicians are recognizing the difficulties in attempting such a blockade.
At this week’s hearing, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike
Crapo echoed this sentiment.
“If the United States were to decide — and I’m not saying that it should — if the United States were to decide we don’t want cryptocurrency to happen in the United States and tried to ban it, I’m pretty confident we couldn’t succeed in doing that because this is a global innovation,”
Co-founder and CEO of global fintech firm Circle, Jeremy
Allaire, responded stating that some current cryptocurrencies are nothing more
than open source software running on the internet, adding that they have a
monetary policy where these assets are algorithmically generated. Allaire
“That is a challenge that every government in the world now faces — that money, digital money, will move frictionlessly everywhere in the world at the speed of the internet.”
Other BTC advocates such as Abra CEO Bill Barhydt stated that banning Bitcoin would be legally challenging due to its nature as cryptographic technology. However, clamping down on a centrally controlled virtual coin such as Libra, which Facebook have admitted may never actually launch, would be far easier and far more beneficial in preventing the tech giant expanding its already avaricious digital data cartel.
The US is not the only nation to realize that banning
Bitcoin is likely to lead to greater interest and have the opposite effect. China
is a good example, where crypto exchanges and public trading is banned
however the people can still get their Bitcoin fix by subverting the system
because there is no central control for BTC.
These debates are actually good for BTC and the crypto
industry, they would not have even taken place two years ago which is testament
to how far things have progressed since then.