Another cryptocurrency eulogy – part 2
Meanwhile in the State Duma
It’s time to go down to earth, i.e. In Russia. According to local authorities, cryptocurrency is a hardly understandable and probably dangerous phenomenon, so it’s easier to ban it rather than break their heads over what to do with it. A perfect example of that discourse comes from member of Duma Andrei Svintsov (LDPR), as it describes the government’s attitude towards Bitcoin pretty well:
“All those cryptocurrencies were created by U.S. intelligence entities to finance terrorism and revolutions” he said. Unfortunately, as it turns out, quite a few people think the same.
Another cryptocurrency promotion issue in Russia is complete absence of any people willing to negotiate with the government entities on behalf of the community. For instance, there are several quite powerful groups in the USA lobbying Bitcoin integration in the corridors of power. Major Bitcoin companies hire former government officials for interactions with state entities. Mainly that interaction resolves itself to enlightenment. And, not so long ago, a Duma member representing United Russia party claimed that ‘the silliest of the parliament members is still smarter than an average Russian’. But what does an average official know about Bitcoin? Let’s try to imagine his associative array for ‘bitcoin’:
Bitcoin lobby is both indispensable and impossible
As a matter of fact, there’s no one to tell the state about cryptocurrency, and no one to advise for a correct solution of that issue. As Ivan Tikhonov, bits.media founder, told ForkLog, there never was an organized Bitcoin lobby in Russia.
“There were lots of speeches at dedicated conferences, concerning economy, for instance. But I have no incontrovertible proofs that anyone has ever got in touch with legislators or regulators. However, had someone got in touch, as we see, all those alleged touches failed. To my reckoning, complete ban of cryptocurrency, as well as complete ignoring, is just responsibility disclaiming without any opportunity of management” he said.
According to another spokesperson, Alex Fork, Bitcoin enthusiast, the key issue is that state institutions never listen to people whatsoever.
“State entities don’t have acoustic organs capable of perceiving information. The fundamental purpose of the officials is to look overhead and follow the government’s general line. That’s why trying to tell them and mutually discuss things is completely pointless. That’s a fundamental problem of our society, as opposed to American society where such dialogues are public and open. It is possible there” he says.
Alex says he happened to participate in dialogues with government officials as a Bitcoin community representative.
“We prepared a draft on implementation of decentralized financial system and sent it to Vladimir Putin’s adimistration, to prime minister Dmitri Medvedev, to the Central Bank, and to Sberbank’s German Gref. Afterwards we spoke with Gref’s assistant who told us that our item was beyond his competence yet he personally is quite positive about cryptocurrency development. At Medvedev’s office they told us to go to the Central Bank, and when we came there they told us the proposal is quite interesting and put it on a shelf at once. Those are all contacts with the government we have ever had” he added.
Anyway, Russian Bitcoin community should not lose grip as it is quite possible to form a community group for dialogue with government entities. This ‘dialogueless dialogue’ has to go forth until it breaks the wall of miscommunication. Even if they ban cryptocurrency, they will not be able to limit its usage completely, so the officials will have a hard work to do. A well-formed Bitcoin lobby could tell them what to do and how to do it right, and the whole community of cryptocurrency advocates pins hopes on it. The earlier Bitcoin goes out of shadows, the more opportunities the people will finally obtain.
“Emergence and development of network community brings both new opportunities and new threats, as there is another technological gap between Russia and the rest of the world forming again. That’s why any activity targeted at banning of decentralized technologies and other kinds of web liberty just makes the matters worse” Alex says.
Let’s imagine Bitcoin has been banned in Russia for 5 to 10 years, and all the companies related to cryptocurrencies could not develop and therefore went abroad. Let’s assume that the repulsive law on cryptocurrency gets cancelled then. And then Russian market will get flooded by experienced and capitalized international companies, while local companies will lack both finance and expertise. The world’s business empires will once again, just like it happened back in the nineties, will come to run the show at an undeveloped secondary market.
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