Capital in the Twenty-First Century, by Thomas Piketty (Crypto Renaissance)


This new book is a wake-up call for many.

Capitalism, Global Inequality, Economic Policy, Distributional Questions, Democracy...

I think it will be interesting to think how Ethereum/Crytpo can join the conversation and participate offering solutions for the future.

Any ideas?


  • mykljonzunmykljonzun Member Posts: 19
    Here's a great essay that wonders about the crisis in capitalism and (by inference) cuts to the heart of the peril and promise of a sharing economy:

    Maybe "secure multiparty computation" is the door everyone is headed towards...
  • StephanTualStephanTual London, EnglandMember, Moderator Posts: 1,282 mod
    edited May 2014
    @mykljonzun‌ , thank you for the link, boy do the concepts on that page look familiar or what:
  • mwilcoxmwilcox Member Posts: 9
    Got this from my library a couple of days ago. Once I've got through it another one that looks like it's worth reading is The Zero Marginal Cost Society by Jeremy Rifkin:
  • VitalikButerinVitalikButerin Administrator Posts: 84 admin
    edited May 2014
    To copy one of my Reddit comments here:

    So that's the interesting question about cryptocurrency. Is it hard money, or are many people [on r/bitcoin] being fooled and it's reality it's actually the ultimate soft money? Am I, by releasing my own crypto, actually imposing a wealth tax on all other assets/instruments that it competes whose efficacy derives directly from social consensus with no middleman? There's an interesting bifurcation here, and I really have no idea which side is going to win.
  • mykljonzunmykljonzun Member Posts: 19
    edited May 2014
    Here's some great historical context to the whole fiat/hard money discussion:

    Those fiat US "Greenbacks" in people's pockets right now were originally created in order to pay-out debt holders after the US Civil War. And fortunately for the US economy, it was also the start of standardized currency. Can you imagine walking into a bar where there are 8,000 forms of solid currency you could offer the bartender? That was the scenario before the Greenback...

    And think about this: Without this standardization via fiat currency, you couldn't have mechanical cash registers and the cash register industry, which lead to the rise of NCR (National Cash Register), the greatest business success with fiat currency, whose VP of Sales (Thomas Watson Sr.) went off to create International Business Machines, which helped convert the calculating machine business into the computer business (and the machines we are using to communicating with each right now).

    Next came the microcomputer, Internet, WWW, and now Cryptocurrency. Next stop: a Post-Firm economy fueled and made functional by secure multi-party computing environments.

    Dollars. Shares. Stock Options. Derivatives. They're all just abstractions. And they're all just one or two advances away for re-representation as some form of cryptocontract, right? IMO, Ethereum is standing on a clear evolutionary line. One that is merging the lineages of fiat currency securitization and management science (which used to be called management theory by the way until computers showed up). I can see why the public at large is confused about what they see as cool electronic tokens that are financially unstable representations of the mostly electronically-represented currency that they use in their every day lives.

    In other words, the hard/fiat debate is a bit of a Red Herring because cryptocurrency's true value (and proper fit) will only be revealed when fully-functional DApps appear. That's exactly where the weaknesses of Old Money's granularity/fluidity/transferability will be exposed.


    By the way, I'm working on an Ethereum-based project right now that could be a solution to the whole group consensus problem, which is just one layer of abstraction above the social consensus problems. There's a missing step between putting something up to an trustlessy-enforceable vote: How to efficiently conduct group deliberation as to what should be voted upon in the first place. Here's a link to a synopsis of it...
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