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Getting away from the bankers and Feds

How I missed the point of bitcoin

No, the key thing about bitcoin is its censorship-resistance — something that I only obliquely touched on in my original post, when I mentioned that the currency could be used to purchase drugs on the dark web or send donations to WikiLeaks, which was then operating under a blockade by the major payment networks.

Censorship-resistance solves a real problem, and not just for drug dealers or ransomware attackers. Centralization may offer certain efficiencies, but it also creates single points of failure that are vulnerable to political or social pressure.
     — Marc Hochstein



Congress considers bill greatly expanding feds’ power to seize your money, Bitcoin, and property

Four U.S. senators have proposed legislation that would significantly expand the power of the federal government to seize citizens’ money when traveling in or out of the United States.

On May 25, Sens. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) introduced in Congress the Combating Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Counterfeiting Act of 2017, legislation that makes it much easier for the federal government to seize assets transported overseas or into the United States.

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The Combating Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Counterfeiting Act would expand “monetary instruments” covered under current law to include “prepaid access devices, stored value cards, digital currencies, and other similar instruments.” This is particularly problematic because digital currencies, such as Bitcoin, are theoretically always transported by the owner of the digital currency account wherever he or she goes, which means digital currency owners with accounts valued at $10,000 or more must always report their funds or risk having them seized.

Even more troubling is the law treats all blank checks as though they are financial instruments valued in excess of $10,000 if the checking account contains at least $10,000, which means if a traveler accidently fails to report a blank check floating around in his or her luggage, the account holder could face stiff penalties — even if there is no suspicion of criminal activity.
     — Justin Haskins

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