Jimmy Song is one of the names in the Bitcoin landscape that needs no introduction. He has been involved in the BTC ecosystem for about a decade, serving as a developer and supporter of the network and publishing several books on the subject, trying to educate the masses on the benefits of Bitcoin, whether in terms of developers or of individual investors.
CryptoPotato I had the chance to speak with Song at the Bitcoin 2023 conference in Amsterdam, where we discussed various BTC-related topics such as ordinals, ETFs, the future of blockchain, and others like inflation and money printing.
“Don’t Care Camp” on Bitcoin ETFs
The question of whether the United States will finally have a place for the Bitcoin ETF is on the minds of many, some, like Edward Snowden, refuse to accept possible endorsement of a positive development while others believe such a product will help legitimize cryptocurrency, particularly for institutional investors.
Speaking on the matter, Jimmy Song said he was in the “I don’t care” camp.
“A lot of people want it to mean something and just because it’s been kind of a promise for a long time. However, we have had futures ETFs for some time now in the US. We’ve had spot ETFs all over the world for a while now.
He acknowledged that some institutional investors will be able to access the BTC ecosystem more easily, but they will also have the option of using short ETFs, which “is going to be very dangerous” since redemptions of the spot product will have to deliver in Real Bitcoin.
While giving his thoughts on another hot topic from earlier this year – Bitcoin Ordinals – Song categorized them as “normal pumps and dumps.” He believes such projects typically take place on altcoins, like the DeFi summer and the NFT craze – both primarily on Ethereum.
This time it was on Bitcoin, which was the unexpected part. Nonetheless, the author of five BTC books believes the hype around Ordinals has “already passed” and added: “I don’t think it matters at all.”
Are we still in the era of the Wild West?
In its first interview with us five years ago, Song said he wore his famous cowboy hat to show that the Bitcoin industry was in the Wild West era because it lacked regulation and true adoption. When asked five years later if he had seen any developments on this issue, Song, who still wore the cowboy hat, replied:
“I would say we’re still there, but maybe a little later, in the days of the Wild West, when there were bounties and stuff like that. But I think in the last five years we’ve seen so many scams, and nothing encapsulates that better than Sam Bankman-Fried, who is now on trial. Thus, part of the savagery is controlled, in particular by the authorities with the prosecutions against SBF, but also by more regulation in general.
When it comes to Bitcoin specifically, Song said, “I’ve seen a lot of regulators recognize that it’s very different from everything else.”
Separately, Song said five years ago that he believed many more people would seek out “free” assets like Bitcoin over the next 15 years, which would strengthen BTC’s adoption curve. With governments using the COVID-19 pandemic to implement more control over the world’s population and the impending launch of CBDCs, we asked Song if he still has the same projection on the future of Bitcoin.
He admitted that most people “gave in” a little too easily when the pandemic broke out, and especially when vaccines were introduced. The controversial results and reports since then have people wondering if they would take the same actions they did a few years ago, when everything was so new to us.
As such, Song believes most people will look for alternatives and better education before making such important decisions. In terms of CBDC, he said, many will respect them once they are fully launched, but much of the population has become much more skeptical. This was illustrated by Canadian truckers, farmers’ protests in a few European countries and other similar events.
He added that the whole process by which people look for alternatives and become freer is a long process:
“So it might not be in 10 or 20 years, but in 50 years I think you’ll see a much more free-spirited population.”
Fiat ruins everything
In an attempt to combat the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, governments around the world have shut down virtually everything, from businesses large and small to people confined to their homes. In some countries it lasted weeks, while in others it lasted months or even years.
To alleviate some of the financial pressure, authorities, particularly those in the Western world, have decided to print tons of fiat currency and distribute them among their population. It is difficult to determine whether this was a success or not, but the impact on the global economy is visible with inflation skyrocketing all over the world. Of course, some governments try to blame the war between Ukraine and Russia or something else.
In his fifth and final book dedicated to the benefits of Bitcoin, Song has spoken out on the subject, which is evident from his title: Fiat Ruins Everything.
He claimed that it is aimed at a different audience than his previous books – this one is “squarely” aimed at Bitcoiners – “people who already own Bitcoin, and to help them understand how corrupt fiduciary has become serious and to somehow rally the troops a little. It’s the anthem, a way of understanding what type of corrupt system they are escaping thanks to Bitcoin.
Featured image courtesy of YouTube