JH: Welcome, I have a super exciting guest today. Roger Ver, I think you know him if you’ve been around Bitcoin a bit. Bitcoin Jesus, as he used to be called. He was an authoritative person who also shaped my thinking back in 2014. Because at that time, there were still quite few non-tech people who were interested in this topic. And for me it was really exciting to see the economic thoughts, of course also a bit of the technical aspect to it, like game theory, economics and a lot of the thoughts that he has in general. I’m nowhere near as extreme as he is in certain thoughts, in certain ideas. And you’ll notice that a little bit in the conversation today. A few things in advance. Roger Ver is not an uncontroversial person, quite the opposite, he is extremely polarising and partly right, partly not right. And you will also notice, I am not going into a discussion with him today and will not be going against him with my opinion, that is not my interest at all. On the contrary, I want to have a platform for different opinions on my channel. My biggest position is Bitcoin and not Bitcoin Cash. And the conversation doesn’t change that decision either. But my platform should definitely be a platform for different opinions. That’s incredibly important to me, and you know that, I don’t want this tribalism at all, that only one coin is the best and that no other opinion is allowed. On the contrary, I want to have different opinions here. And that’s exactly what the conversation between the two of us is supposed to make clear. And I hope you get an incredible amount of value out of this. If you somehow have a follow-up wish here, then feel free to write it to me in the comments below. And I can only tell you one thing, make sure you are as open as possible to the different opinions. That doesn’t mean you have to agree. For me it’s often much more interesting to hear the different arguments, the logic behind them. And to think about it afterwards. And I also find it very interesting in some points when he talks about whether he thinks the Satoshi coins will ever move or his different views on store of value. Super exciting stuff and one thing you just can’t forget, whether you’re Bitcoin or Bitcoin Cash, Roger has had an incredible impact over the last decade for Bitcoin. I’ll tell you one thing, Bitcoin or Bitcoin Cash, by far, wouldn’t be around today if he hadn’t done all this marketing for the coin. No matter what side you’re on here, and you can never really forget that here. With that, have fun with today’s video.
JH: Roger, thanks so much for taking the time. I would love to kick all this off with a book you recommended to me. It was during a meet up in Hong Kong. I tried to figure out what month it was, what day, yet I can’t remember. You were there and you recommended a book to me, which was “economics in one lesson” and I was totally inspired by how you saw the world, how things were a bit different and my medical mind hadn’t had any clue on that. So what I wanted to know is, where did you learn about this book? I know you recommended a second book to me, that was way more comprehensive and you said, but only read that if you’re really into it. Walk me through a bit on where this libertarian mindset comes from. Is this from your parents? Where did this come from? Bring me back to that place.
RV: It definitely isn’t from my parents, maybe it’s from my grandfather though, but for whatever reason he didn’t pass it down to my mom. But my maternal grandfather was interested in these sorts of ideas as well, but I didn’t really have much of a sense of any of it at all, until I picked up some of these economics books. And the more economics you study, the more you realize that every single government intervention in the economy starts to have unintended consequences and usually winds up leading to results that are at the very least different if not the exact opposite of what the politicians had in mind to begin with. And so for reading those books it just turned me into more and more of a libertarian as I read them and it sounds like maybe that book “economics in one lesson” had a similar effect on you from reading that as well. It’s a really powerful book, and another economist I’m a fan of, Milton Friedman, he summed it up so well: you have to judge government programs or anything in life for that matter, you have to judge them on the actual results, rather than the intentions. So there’s all sorts of government programs that have wonderful intentions, but they don’t lead to good results. And if they don’t lead to good results, even if they had wonderful intentions going into them it’s not a good idea to implement them.
JH: Hopping on that, if you had been president, if you had been a decision maker, how would you have handled the last year?
RV: I think I’d let people decide for themselves, if they want to self-isolate and stay at home and wear a mask feel free to do so and if you want to close your business and not let customers in the business feel free to do that. If you want to open your business and allow people in, feel free to do that. If you want to go out and about, feel free to go to that. I’d let people decide what’s the right choice for them, because I don’t think there is a one-size-fits-all choice. If I was overweight in my 80s, I would probably stay home and self-isolate. But if I was in my 20s and healthy, I could still go on with life and traditionally that’s what societies always done. You isolate the people who are actually sick and not everybody else from everybody else all the time. And I think there’s huge unintended consequences from these worldwide lockdowns, in the form of people having all their savings wiped out and just lost economic growth and like the repercussions from people not being able to exercise and or go to the doctor. Or all sorts of just giant problems, that we’ll see later down the road, or maybe you won’t see it all because people died of other things or committed suicide. And the suicide rates have just skyrocketed all over the world so I would have handled it in the same way as I would handle most things in life: I’d let people decide for themselves. And as long as they’re not using a force or fraud against their fellow citizen, they should be free to do it.
JH: What were the things you stumbled across, before you stumbled across bitcoin, I think it was in 2011, right? Or was it 2010? How much did in your mind change from what we all kind of learned in school and then how did all this work?
RV: I studied all the economics, that made me really excited for once. Somebody finally figured out how to invent peer-to-peer electronic cash and we had the internet, we had all these other tools and kind of like the final missing piece of the puzzle, to enable people to have more control over their own lives, was peer-to-peer electronic cash. When Bitcoin finally came along, for me it was like, oh this is something I’ve been waiting 13 years of my life for it to come along. There was another great book called “future imperfect” by David D. Friedman – fantastic book. I think he wrote it in like 1998 or ’99 or a long long time ago. But in that book he was talking about anonymous eCash and using digital signatures to prove your identity on the internet and how people would engage in commerce on the internet beyond the purview of the state using this anonymous eCash. And he was explaining how – you know his background is in law – he was explaining how he had practiced law on the internet without an actual law license from the government and using digital signatures. He could prove that his customers were dealing with the same person each time and with this anonymous eCash he’d be able to receive payments from them and they could be a reputational system online. And basically in the late 1990s this guy described the silk road, but instead for drugs, for illegal lawyers to give legal advice. And then, I thought this was just so incredibly fascinating and I was like, wow the world really needs this peer-to-peer electronic cash, or as he called it: an anonymous eCash. And then in 2011, when I heard about Bitcoin for the first time, it was like finally the missing piece of the puzzle that the entire world and the internet has been waiting for, is finally here and it’s called Bitcoin. And so that made me just head over heels excited for this, because I felt like this was the thing I’d been waiting for my entire life. And it was very clear, it was peer-to-peer cash for engaging in commerce on the internet, like the store of value stuff, that’s all fine and dandy. But the really world-changing technology is the peer-to-peer electronic cash system. That’s what really changes the world.
JH: Who recommended that book to you? Do you know? Or did you just stumble across it?
RV: At that point in my life I was kind of running with these transhumanist futurist people that were interested in future technology and the evolution of what’s human society going to become and so I was interested in chronic suspension and these sorts of things. And David Friedman has been one of the leading thinkers in what the future is going to bring. When that book came out it was new around that time and somehow I heard about it and bought it and thought, wow this is amazing and it just made the world seem even more exciting than it already seemed at that point.
JH: Cool. You mentioned the store of value versus the payment system. What do you think? I’d like to hear your story to that, and I really believe that you have put way more thoughts into this than I probably did, because a lot of my thinking actually was influenced by listening to you and a lot of your ideas. Do you think, that the store of value shouldn’t come way earlier than the actual payment form or do you think that the actual payment form can come before the actual store of value?
RV: The store of value absolutely comes later but the origin is some sort of other utility right? So if you look in all throughout history, things that people used as money had other use cases first. Like in the earliest days maybe people used fish or salt or something like that as money and because they have these other use cases you could eat it or you put the salt on the food and it makes the food taste better or all these different things. If you read the economics primary texts, they are basically talking about how money has to have some additional use case for people, and then it winds up becoming used as money if it’s easy to store, it’s easily durable, easily recognisable. It has to be scarce and so I read about all these things in theory in these economics books and then some of the watchers will know and some people don’t know that I spent some time in a federal prison in the United States. And that was a really big eye-opener for me, because I got to see, inside of prison it’s against the prison rules for anybody to buy or sell or trade anything with anybody. Yet part of what makes a human to a human is our want and desire to trade with other human beings. So there is this entire prison economy, where people are buying and selling and trading absolutely anything from cigarettes to sex. But you got to see firsthand that the theories I had read about in the economics books were true in practice. The main thing that were used in prison as money were tobacco, because tobacco can be smoked, it’ll last for a long time and you can easily divide it up. It’s also not counterfeitable but the real important thing there is, that it has an use case. People like to smoke it. Another thing that was used as money in prison were postage stamps, because again, you can store them for a long time in your locker, they’re easy to recognize and you can’t counterfeit them. But they have this use case and the use case is that you can mail a letter with them. And then the same sort of story with the third form of money – and they had an exchange rate between all of these – were like top ramen soups and of course top ramen soups can be stored in your locker for months or even years and it’ll still be fine. Easy to recognize, there’s a limited supply and the utility is, that you can eat them. And so all of those things had this use case outside of money but because they had that use case outside of money directly, they also became a store of value as well. Though you would see people with stockpile stamps, they’d stockpile tobacco, they’d stockpile the soups and keep them in their lockers so that they could spend them later. And because all these things have these additional use cases, they wound up becoming a store of value in the prison as well. So the richest people in there run the equivalent of a convenience store, they had an entire locker filled with all the different things that people would want and the money or the payment for those things were the stamps, the tobacco or the top ramen soups. And so it was very clear. And then all the other people, if they wanted to buy something from the store they would either save up stamps or tobacco or soup so they would have money to pay at the store. You would use those things as a store of value because you knew you would be able to spend them later, but the reason those things also became money or became a store of value, is because they had this other additional use case outside of being a store of value. I see it the same way with Bitcoin. The reason it was able to become a store of value at all, is because it had this amazingly incredible use case, that you could transport it anywhere in the world instantly to make a payment with it. And we saw that with the Silk Road in the early days, where people all over the world were able to magically transport their Bitcoins all over the world to pay for things. And then people like myself and others saw the use case that it could magically transport all over the world. And so we started buying it up and saving it because we thought in the future it would wind up becoming even more useful for payments out there. And it turned out, we’ll dive into this at some point, Bitcoin has become more useful for payments because there are more merchants and businesses accepting it than ever before and there’s better wallet software and better just about everything. But from the other standpoint it’s become slower, more expensive and less reliable to actually do those payments on chain than they used to be, which is forcing people to start using custodian solutions and if you’re using custodian solutions, that means somebody else is holding the Bitcoin for you on your behalf, you’re most of the way back to the traditional banking system we have.
Where PayPal can close your account or the bank can tell you that you can’t do a wire or all these other things that were kind of the entire point of Bitcoin were to bypass those traditional systems. And if you wind up using a custodian, you’re kind of right back where we started again. With one major exception, which is a good exception, that the central banks can’t just print more at will, like they’ve been doing with the Dollar in the Euro. And one other point, I guess especially since this is mainly going to a German audience, for those that are old enough to remember the German Mark. Everybody in Germany used the German Mark as their store of value not because it had some, you couldn’t eat it, you couldn’t smoke it but because you could spend it everywhere. And as soon as you couldn’t spend the German Mark everywhere, it’s not a store of value anymore. Today you can spend the Euro everywhere, so everyone uses the Euro as their store of value. In the future, if Bitcoin Cash or some other cryptocurrency becomes spendable all over the world, I predict that that’s the currency that people are going to use as their store of value. People never ever use something as a store of value, that doesn’t have an additional use case and the most common additional use case, is that you can spend it everywhere. Every American uses the Dollar as their store of value and the Europeans use the Euro, other countries use their other local currency, because they can spend it everywhere and I see the same thing playing out with cryptocurrencies. Whatever cryptocurrency is spendable everywhere, is going to be the cryptocurrency that people want to use as their store of value as well.
JH: How does this work for physical gold though? Walk me through there, because there I’m struggling a bit. I completely, 100 percent, follow what you’re saying, I’m struggling there though when it comes to understanding the use case there. I get the jewellery aspect, but is that enough utility?
RV: Gold was used in dentistry for thousands of years, like even the ancient Egyptians were making gold teeth when their regular teeth would rot out. And then of course in more modern times, we’ve been using gold in electronics. Gold is used all the time and actually my career before cryptocurrency stuff, I was selling computer memory and just about every single computer memory PC board, all the little connector leads on it, are coated in gold because it doesn’t corrode and it gives you a really good connection with whatever socket you’re inserting it into. So there’s tons of gold used in all these electronics and they recycle it and so there’s an industrial use case there. A long time ago mainly it was dentistry, in more modern times it’s been things like electronics, but if gold didn’t have those additional use cases, it wouldn’t have wound up being used as a store of value. Of course it was used as money for thousands of years as well and you had gold coins and there was no such thing as the interactor or Paypal, so it wasn’t really much of a thing to be able to pay people at a distance.
JH: But do you really believe that the dentistry part was that essential? Because to me, also the other question would be, what would have been the alternative to gold? To me it was a bit, maybe that’s also where I’m coming from, maybe gold just became the store of value, because humans look for these ideas or payments and store of value and gold just coincidentally fit everything. Or what would have been the alternative?
RV: It fit that in many societies but in other societies they were using things like tobacco as well, so there’s been lots of different things that have been used as money. And you can take a look at those different things but I can’t think of a single example in all of human history in which something has been used as a store of value, that doesn’t have an additional use case outside of being a store of value. I can’t think of a single example of that ever having taken place in human history and if someone has an idea please let me know. Because I’d be very interested in hearing what that is.
JH: You mentioned your time in prison, do you want to add something to it? Otherwise I cut this part out, if you don’t want to add anything to it. I’ll mention it.
RV: No, I think it was an important part in shaping who I am today and so I had all the theoretical knowledge about the origins of money that I’d read about in the books. But it was seeing that practical evidence right in front of my eyes in prison. the theories that I had read about in the books are true in practice. So it was that, plus I was feeling a bit upset about how I got treated by the US government and all that. Oh now we have Bitcoin, absolutely for sure people are going to start using this as money and absolutely for sure, when people start using this as money it undermines the power of the state to control people’s lives. This is a fantastic win-win situation. Step one, buy a bunch of Bitcoin. Step two, invest in all the businesses that make it easier to use Bitcoin as money. And then step three, I’ve now undermined the ability of the governments around the world to control people in their lives and their money. Win-win-win situation, every step of the way so it was a pretty exciting thing for me to get involved in. And if I hadn’t had that personal experience, maybe I wouldn’t have been as confident that Bitcoin was going to become popular like I did so I guess that’s one good thing that came out of my prison experience.
JH: Why did you have to go to prison?
RV: Long ago, in the late 1990s I was selling firecrackers on eBay. I bought them from a website and then sold them on eBay. This was when eBay had a guns and ammo section and I didn’t have a license to do that and so I got in trouble for not having a license. But the really interesting part about that, is that the company that I was buying them from had no license either. The manufacturer had no license, dozens of other resellers across the entire country had no license. I became the only person in the entire country to get in trouble for selling those and it’s very clearly because I ran for political office in the United States as a libertarian. And I called the ATF and thee FBI a bunch of jack-booted thugs and murderers, in reference to a bunch of little kids that got killed. You’re laughing and it is funny, but it’s also a horrible tragedy in American history. They literally burnt to death dozens of kids that were less than 10 years old in this church in Texas and yeah their parents were religious nuts but burning to death a bunch of kids, in a church that’s not the right thing to do. No matter what sort of an uniform you’re working in or if you call yourself the FBI. It still doesn’t turn immoral acts into moral acts. Anyhow, call them a bunch of murderers in regards to that, they didn’t like that at all. I was already fairly successful in business at a young age, so they started looking into me and said how can we get this young kid with a big mouth and so I wound up being the only person in the entire country to be prosecuted for selling those firecrackers without a license.
JH: I guess a lot of people, especially the ones who got into the crypto space after 2017 – and let’s be honest, it’s the majority of people -, they either only see you from the Bitcoin Cash angle or, and that’s recently a lot of the German audience at least, learned about you from “Bitcoin billionaires”, from Ben Mezrichs book. I don’t know if you have actually read that book. I would be curious on how accurate your memories are of those interactions between you and Charlie Shrem and the Winklevoss brothers.
RV: There’s another book called “digital gold”, ironically enough by Nathaniel Popper, that I hear is very similar to “bitcoin billionaires”. I haven’t read “bitcoin billionaires”, but I did read “digital gold”. And for every single piece of the book that I had firsthand knowledge of, he got it exactly right with one somewhat heartbreaking exception. In 2013, when Bitcoin hit a thousand dollars for the first time, I donated a thousand Bitcoin which was worth 1.1 million US Dollars back then. I donated it to the Foundation for Economic Education, FEE, but in the book he put down that I donated it to EFF for the Electronic Frontier Foundation. He said that I donated to it and I like the Electronic Frontier Foundation as well, but I like the Foundation for Economic Education even more. But the book itself is great – he did a really fantastic job. But I guess that was somewhat to be expected, because I spent a lot of time with him and basically gave him a brain download of everything that had happened and he spent a lot of time with the other guys that he covered in the book. Maybe I’ll make some time to read “bitcoin billionaires” as well. But from what I’ve heard from my friends who have read it and were involved, they did a good job and it’s accurate as well. But I didn’t read that one directly myself.
JH: Cool, I guess a lot of people read that and so it’s interesting to kind of understand it. Okay, but I mean I think all the depictions in there and the descriptions, I also thought they’re very likely to be as they happened. Walk me through there, you learned about Bitcoin, explain to me how did you learn about Bitcoin? You saw the digital payment part for you and then? Maybe also talk to me a bit about the investments that you make. I mean, I think you were – and please correct me if I’m wrong -, you were the first kind of non-engineer person that really started being very aggressive in that space and I think if it weren’t for you, a lot of people including myself wouldn’t have had the same approach to Bitcoin. Because everything would have been way too technical and maybe hard to understand.
RV: I was definitely the first business person to take any sort of interest in this at all. I heard about it in relation to the Silk Road on a libertarian radio show. And I heard people are using Bitcoin to buy and sell drugs. I wasn’t interested in the drugs at all, but I knew from selling firecrackers online and in other computer parks, what the heck type of money could they possibly be using to do this, right? You can’t do that with PayPal, you can’t do that with a wire transfer, you can’t do that with checks and so I started looking into Bitcoin to see what this Bitcoin thing is all about. What’s it about and I had enough of a computer science background to understand how it works technically and I had plenty of economics background. I understand why it would wind up being useful as money and the real key there was with the computer science side, that the only way to shut down Bitcoin would be to turn off the entire internet, the entire world and keep it turned off. Well, it’s game on. Because now we have a payment tool that can’t be turned off and maybe it’s because I had experienced that in the past. I was a user of another company called E-gold, that allowed people to do payments online using gold. Maybe this is also part of why I’ve been so hostile to the idea, that Bitcoin is just a store of value. With E-gold there was a custodian that held all the gold for you and they had the gold in their vaults and you would just transfer around the ownership of the gold electronically. So I would say, okay pay from my gold wallet to Julian’s wallet a hundred Dollars worth of gold or a hundred Euros worth of gold or whatever and they would transfer that amount worth of gold at whatever the exchange rate from gold to Euros or Dollars were at that time. The gold physically would stay, but the account balances would update and it was a really cool way to be able to use gold as money. And it was starting to get more and more traction, more and more people were using it. Some of my customers were actually starting to use it to pay me for the computer memory. And then some other users of the website apparently were using it for something that the US government didn’t like, so the US government came in and physically seized all of the gold from the E-gold company and then put the guys that were running it in jail. Every legitimate E-gold user like myself, lost their gold. We didn’t have custody of ourselves, the company got shut down and the US government seized the gold. Our money was gone. And that’s one of my big fears that I see with all these custodial solutions for Bitcoin. The moment the government doesn’t like it enough, they can go to any of these custodial platforms and say, give us Julians Bitcoins or give us all of your users Bitcoins. That’s a disaster and if you think that’s wild crazy talk, in the US they did that exact same thing historically. They said, nobody is allowed to own gold in America and if you have any gold, you have to give it to us right now and if you don’t, then you’re going to go to jail. And maybe there’s similar points in history in Germany, where similar things happened and I’m sure it’s happened in other countries around the world. If everybody around the world is using their Bitcoin in a custodian platform, governments can just come in and take it. You’ve lost most of the benefits of using a blockchain and some sort of digital currency there. It’s very important that users be able to take custody of the funds themselves and hold the private keys themselves. Everybody doesn’t have to do that all the time, but it’s very important that it is practical and plausible for people to be able to do that. Otherwise governments can just come in and screw up the whole thing all over again, like they’ve done time and time again throughout history.
JH: How do you see Coinbase then right now? Especially with the IPO. On the one hand, they’re one of the largest onboarders of FIAT money into the crypto space. How do you see that?
RV: Coinbase has been a fantastic tool to get more people to be able to use cryptocurrencies. And the fact, that they’re having an IPO is fantastic. All these things are great, but even Coinbase recognizes, the more custody they have of other peoples crypto, the bigger a target they become for governments and the bigger a target they become for black hat hackers. If they’re holding billions of dollars of cryptocurrency, every hacker from anywhere on the planet is going to be trying to hack into Coinbase and figure out how they can steal that crypto as well. And the more money they have, the more governments are going to be paying attention to them. Even Coinbase is aware of this and that’s why they’ve launched other things. They have what’s called the Coinbase wallet, which is an actual wallet that gives their users the private keys as well. And you’ll see all these exchanges like Kraken and others say very clearly, you can deposit your funds for trading, but as soon as you’re done, please withdraw them to your own wallet, we don’t want to be responsible for your money. And I think that’s why, in the early days – a lot of people don’t know this -, Coinbase and Blockchain.com, were the same company. It was one single company. Most people don’t know this. The two founders Brian Armstrong and Ben Reeves had a difference of vision there. Brian at that time thought that it would be just fine for Coinbase to take custody of everybody’s funds and Ben Reeves thought, that everybody should have their private keys themselves and the user should be in charge of the funds themselves. So the one single company split into two companies, then wound up becoming Blockchain.info now it’s blockchain.com and Coinbase.com. And Coinbase is about to have an IPO, maybe Blockchain will at some point here in the future as well.
JH: They just had a large round… they have been valued five billion or something.
RV: They just announced, I think earlier today, that 300 and something million Dollars have been raised and that was on top of another 100 million they raised last month. I think the most recent valuation was over 5 billion Dollars. They have more than 70 million wallets and those are real wallets. I guess that’s one thing that also is kind of frustrating in the ecosystem. So many things are being called wallets, that aren’t wallets. If you don’t have the private keys yourself, it’s not a wallet, it’s a custodian account and so Blockchain.com is an actual wallet where the users have the keys themselves. Bitcoin.com is an actual wallet where the users have the keys themselves. Things like Binance, that’s an account, Kraken is an account, Coinbase has an account system. They also have a wallet system and more people are busy using the account at the moment. Hopefully that’ll change in the future but it’s very important for people to understand the difference between an account and an actual wallet and I’m a much bigger fan of wallets. Back in 2012-ish, I think it was at this point, I had the opportunity right after Blockchain and Coinbase had split into two companies, to invest in both. Instead, I only invested in Blockchain.com, because I wanted people to have their keys themselves. And the reason I didn’t invest in Coinbase isn’t because I didn’t like Brian or what they were doing, it was because I thought people should have their own keys themselves and so I only invested in Blockchain.com, that’s still going to work out just fine for me. But if I had a time machine I would end up investing in both I suppose.
JH: From whom did you get your first Bitcoins?
RV: I got my first Bitcoin ever from a Gavin Andresens Bitcoin faucet. He had a faucet and I think it gave me a whole Bitcoin right there.
JH: It was less than a Dollar.
RV: Yeah, exactly it was 10 cents, 15 cents or something like that and he would just give it out to anybody who asked for one and that went on for a long time. And it’s, I guess kind of worth pointing out today, there’s still lots of faucets today but not for Bitcoin. Because you can’t do it with Bitcoin, because the fees are so high. But there’s lots of faucets for Bitcoin Cash or other coins out there. And so that’s just I guess one more indication for me like the magic that made Bitcoin so exciting and it breaks my heart to say, but it’s not possible on the BTC chain anymore. Because there aren’t faucets out there, where you can give anybody who is new to Bitcoin a little bit of Bitcoin. Whereas there’s one website, that I’ve no stake in, I just find it incredibly interesting it’s noise.cash. It’s like a social media platform, but it’s paying out all sorts of just a penny here or a penny there for people for doing social media stuff. And apparently like tens of thousands of Filipinos and other people in like low-wage countries in the world are busy signing up on that website and doing social media stuff and getting a penny here and a penny there. A Bitcoin Cash on chain that can be sent right there to their wallet and it’s kind of a reminiscent of the early days of Bitcoin because there were very similar services happening way back then. But I guess that’s my reminiscing of the past with Blockchain and Coinbase. I should have invested in both, but at least I did one of the two, so that worked out.
JH: Both Charlie Shrem and Russ Ulbricht they went to jail. What do you think did you do differently being that libertarian, that you didn’t cross the border to go to jail for cryptocurrency – especially at the beginning?
RV: Well, to be fair all three of us went to jail.
JH: Yeah, but you went for something else. Russ and Charlie went for dealing drugs with cryptocurrencies.
RV: They did but I think the difference is the same there. I don’t think Charlie is likely to ever go back to prison ever again, because I think he’s been terrified. He’s seen what the wrath of government can be and I think if Ross, hopefully he gets out of prison at some point… I don’t think he’ll ever go back to prison ever again and I don’t think I will either. You have to really watch out for these government people and don’t give them any opening to give you a hard time whatsoever. I guess, you know I’m older than Charlie and Ross, so maybe I just learned my lesson a little bit earlier in my life. If I had never been to jail before Bitcoin came out, I would probably wind up going later.
JH: How would you have stretched the boundaries, especially during times when it was really crazy?
RV: Well, it was kind of the wild west out there. Everybody was busy building everything and it felt like the entire world was going to change overnight in the course of a couple of days or a couple of maybe months at most. It felt like the entire world was going to switch to using Bitcoin overnight. This was 2011. It really felt that way. It was just so exciting. It was hard to even go to sleep every night, because there was just so much happening and so much enthusiasm and all these early people were just so excited about everything that was going on. They were busy building the tools to make that happen and here we are, a decade later, it hasn’t happened overnight, but it clearly is happening. And there’s attention from pretty much every major business in the world and they are looking at the space and figuring out what they’re going to do. I forgot the origin of the quote but somebody said that, it might have been David Friedman. It’s Raymond Kurzweil who said this, he says, the amount of change that we experience in the short term is always less than we had expected. But the amount of change in the long term is always way more than you expect. And I think that’s kind of true with the cryptocurrency.
JH: Obviously the first Bitcoin cycle, massive hype.
RV: When you say first Bitcoin cycle, which cycle do you mean?
JH: For me the first one is until 2013. That’s a bit of the first cycle for me. That was the first time Bitcoin hit 1200 Dollars, that was the first time then for me. Suddenly I was like, wow that is something. I don’t know if you see this differently.
RV: For me the first cycle, I would say would be June of 2011, when Bitcoin hit 30 Dollars for the first time. And in the course of maybe two weeks it went from two Dollars to thirty Dollars and that was a really exciting time. And that was the point where it felt like, this is it, this is the flipping of Bitcoin into becoming money for the entire world. The market cap hit 10 million Dollars or something or 20 million Dollars at that point. And clearly it wasn’t the flipping at that point, but to most of us involved, it really felt like it was about to happen. And the whole world was going to realize how superior Bitcoin was to Dollars or Euros or Yen.
JH: Okay and so then, what happened? The price crashed to two Dollars, right?
RV: Yeah, the price went from 30 all the way back down to two and I guess, I’m not an excellent trader on the way down from 30 though. I was buying it for 25, I was buying every time I would earn any money for my existing business, I’d put it into buying more Bitcoin. I bought more at 18 and more at 15 and then more at 12 and by the time it got to like 12 or 10 I was out of Dollars. I didn’t have any more Dollars to buy more Bitcoin and I’d drain down my Dollar capital to the lowest amount that I could and still run my normal business. And so I didn’t have much more money to buy Bitcoin, when it got all the way down to two or five or any there, but you know it worked out okay. And then in 2012, I launched a website called Bitcoinstore.com and we listed the entire line card of products from Ingram Micro and Tech Data, which are the biggest and the third biggest electronics component distributors in the entire United States or actually the entire world for that matter. We listed all of their products, more than half a million products, and we sold them for Bitcoins only. And just like Elon Musk announced earlier today, all the Bitcoin we received for payments, we just kept them. We didn’t convert it back into Dollars, we were keeping it all and we were selling all these products at cost. And so we were able to compete head-to-head on pricing with Amazon and Newegg and all the big retailers in the United States. And I was busy on social media, tweeting at Amazon and tweeting it at Tigerdirect and tweeting at Newegg and say: ‘hey look at all these orders we’re getting in’. And I would send screenshots of the time stamps for all the orders that were coming in and said: ‘you guys could be receiving all these orders too’. All you have to do is start accepting Bitcoin for payments and there’s no doubt in my mind whatsoever that Bitcoinstore.com played a big role in kicking off e-commerce adoption of Bitcoin all around the world. And then later we saw these businesses like Newegg.com, like Overstock.com, like Microsoft.com, Expedia.com, Dell computer, they all just started accepting Bitcoin for payments and it was really an amazing thing. But Bitcoinstore.com was the impetus for that in the white market business. Before that, I guess it was Silk Road, but the first legitimate store in the eyes of the law business was Bitcoinstore.com. And it worked out fantastic. We sold everything at cost but made a fortune, because the price of Bitcoin went up, as it became more useful in commerce. Once you could buy anything with it, suddenly people had a reason to want to have some. Whereas if you didn’t have this website like Bitcoinstore.com and if you weren’t interested in buying drugs on the dark net, what were you gonna do with Bitcoin? Nothing. There was no reason you would use it as a store of value. There wasn’t a reason you would do anything with it. So it was so important to have that usefulness in actual commerce to lead things off to where we are today. With this worldwide cryptocurrency ecosystem, really just exploding into more and more adoption all over the world every day.
JH: A couple of questions, first one is a mindset question. Let’s talk about the entire ecosystem, let’s not focus on Bitcoin, because I really would love to kind of have a bit of a discussion between Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash down the line. So let’s focus on the whole ecosystem. The ecosystem has matured significantly since then. The first thing, 15x two Dollars to thirty Dollars down to two Dollars. What goes on in your mind and especially in comparison to when today the price of a current cryptocurrency goes up by 10 or 15 percent people all FOMO in, but if the price goes down by 10 percent, they are like ‘oh it’s a market crash’. How much of your wealth was in there? Obviously a lot, because you kept buying all the time. I don’t know if you want to share this, but how much money did you have as a whole back then? So that people can have maybe a bit of a relation, yet I don’t know if you want to share this. And then, what goes on in your mind when this thing suddenly goes down minus 90 percent?
RV: I already had a net worth of, I don’t know, 10 million plus US Dollars and a lot of it was tied up in inventory for the business and that sort of things. But I put most of it into Bitcoin and so every free Dollar I had went right into Bitcoin and I started pressuring all of our suppliers for the business to let me pay them in Bitcoin. I held the very first Bitcoin meet-up ever in mainland China and I invited all of my suppliers and business people that I knew in China to a restaurant in Shenzhen and explained Bitcoin to all of them. I gave them all some and showed them how it works. And some of them are like, ‘this is dumb why are you doing this’. But actually one of them went on to become one of the biggest miners in all of China. At one point he sent me a really nice email several years later. And you know I’m sure a little bit was lost in the translation from Chinese to English there, but he said, ‘Roger you are my Bitcoin spirit guide’. And I’ve never been called a Bitcoin spirit guide before, but I thought that was a very nice thing and he was running this giant mining operation there as well. It was just kind of fun to see it spread, not just across China, but across the world there as well. I was busy getting anybody I possibly could, that I ever had to pay or receive money from, to try and do it in Bitcoin and use it as money and help it make it money for the world to compete head-to-head with the Dollar and the Euro in the end. That’s been my goal from day one.
JH: What about the investment mindset? The getting nervous when prices go down 80, 90 per cent and especially today, I mean come on, the market has matured so much. And back then, I mean, I really like to hear if at no point did you ever think Bitcoin is just going to disappear? Like it was just a farce?
RV: No, that never crossed my mind. I also know that I’m not a good day trader. If I try and day trade, I’m just going to do the opposite of what I should in the trades. The one single time I thought, ‘oh here’s an opportunity’ where when I had some good information. I forget what it was, but there were some problems in China and I thought when this news come out, the price is going to go down. So I sold a little bit, thinking I could buy it back more. Then the news came out and the price went up. So I don’t even try to day trade on any sort of news. At this point, though, I am more concerned about Bitcoin’s future, not because it doesn’t have adoption, but mainly because of its difficulty adjustment algorithm. It’s a lot more dangerous if there were to be some wild run-ups in the price of Bitcoin Cash or any other SHA256 coin and the mining power were to leave Bitcoin quickly. But the congestion would become significantly worse on Bitcoin. If the congestion becomes even worse, maybe more people would want to leave and that would make the congestion worse again and maybe there could be this spiralling cycle of network congestion that causes more and more people to want to leave. And we saw a little bit of that kind happening previously. But what kind of wound up saving Bitcoin was that as everybody was trying to leave or at least trying to transact on the Bitcoin chain, they were all bidding higher and higher network fees. And so that attracted some of the hash rate back, because the miners wanted to earn the extra money from the fees. But now there’s absolutely no doubt in my mind whatsoever that the cryptocurrency ecosystem as a whole is going anywhere and that this is here to stay. This is going to become just a part of everybody’s lives, just like the internet is or cell phones are today. It’s intricately intertwined with everybody’s life on the planet, that is the future.
JH: Let’s talk Mt. Gox. Were you affected by the hack scam or whatever this was. Were you affected? Did this change your mind at all or were you more like, ‘I told you guys’? I mean custodial solution is like cancer.
RV: Yeah, I think both of those things. I was affected and I had told everybody to watch out for custodial solutions. The thing that really bothers me the most is a lot of these Bitcoin maximalists go out there and they just plain lie and claim that I said Mt. Gox was solvent. And I never ever made any claim as to whether or not Mt. Gox was solvent or not. I never audited their books. I made a video and in hindsight I shouldn’t have made the video, because it gave people more confidence in Mt. Gox than they should have had. But at the time I made the video, nobody was worried about Mt. Gox having people’s Bitcoins or not. That was not what this video was about, the video was about Dollars and everybody was concerned about being able to get their Dollars out of Mt. Gox. And I saw with my very own eyes in their office that day, Mark Karpelès logged into his online banking account and I could see that he had more than 100 million US Dollars in the account and tens of millions of British Pounds and maybe some Euros as well. I forgot the exact numbers. But for sure it was more than 100 million US Dollars were sitting in the account there and then he showed me and I saw it with my very own eyes, a letter from the bank. And I forgot the exact numbers, but I think the bank told him, that he’s not allowed to send more than 10 wire transfers per day and I think the maximum amount per wire transfer was either like a hundred thousand Dollars or a million Dollars or something like that. Which you know 10 wire transfers a day, it was not enough for Mt. Gox. So clearly the problems with the FIAT withdrawals at that time were caused by the bank not letting him do enough wires and not because of the other fact that he’d been hacked and didn’t have everybody’s Bitcoins. That was all true but nobody knew that at that time other than maybe Mark. But nobody was even aware of that, nobody was concerned about the Bitcoins, everybody was only concerned about the Dollars at that point. But Mt. Gox was a a disaster there.
JH: How did this change your thinking? Or how did this change further actions for you?
RV: Well, my advice, even way before Mt. Gox blew up, was like, hold your money yourself so you’re not at someone else’s mercy. Because we’ve seen time and time again, not just at Mt. Gox but in other traditional financial institutions, they run on fractional reserve. And then finally when the musical chairs game runs out, poof everybody’s money is gone and so we’ve seen that happen with Mt. Gox, we’ve seen it happen with you know Bernie Madoff and all sorts of other times, time and time again. The best way, if you can, is to hold your money yourself there. And you won’t run into those sorts of problems and that’s what’s kind of frustrating. We’re seeing a lot of the cryptocurrency ecosystem. I guess for instance, this DeFi stuff is wonderful, because it’s like all non-custodial financial services stuff. But then with bitcoin and some of the other high fee stuff, we’re seeing more and more people just using custodians and I think as we’ve seen from Mt. Gox, that can be dangerous.
JH: Who is Satoshi?
RV: I don’t know, whoever he is, wherever he is I thank him and he invented literally one of the most important things for all of humankind. So thank you to Satoshi, wherever, whoever you are.
JH: You invested a lot of money in trying to figure it out. Nothing that ever came out of this?
RV: No, one interesting theory though, I don’t know if he would want me to give his name as the person that like proposed the theory real seriously to me. But somebody very knowledgeable in the space, been in the space almost as long as I have, and really brought a lot of traditional finance people in the space. If I said his name, people would at the very least recognise the name of his company. And I had dinner with him, I don’t know maybe a year and a half ago now and he was very convinced that it was this french guy that’s been in federal prison in the US like Solotoshi, it’s like a french guy that was running around in Africa, he was like a drug dealer and was also the guy that created TrueCrypt, the encryption software and this other founder of a major crypto or bitcoin company was very convinced that it was this guy, and that’s why Satoshi disappeared. Because he’s been in jail in the US for a while. And maybe it was that guy, I haven’t done my own research into that, but Solotoshi was his actual name Solotoshi Lacroix (46:52) or something like that you’ll have to google it (Paul Solotshi Calder Le Roux). And even if he’s not Satoshi, it’s a really wild interesting story. Maybe one afternoon when I have more time, I’ll read into that even more and that would certainly wind up being an interesting twist in the plot of who Satoshi is, if it turns out to be that guy.
JH: Do you think the Satoshi coins will have a move?
RV: That’s an even better question. Maybe they’ll move when there’s some sort of really strong privacy tool on top of bitcoin, where the next step of those coins can’t be moved. Because in the early days of bitcoin, everybody thought bitcoin was basically totally anonymous, like people didn’t realise until later, that it’s actually kind of the opposite of anonymous. It’s very traceable so maybe Satoshi’s waiting for some very private way to be able to move his coins and once that technology exists, then maybe he’ll start moving them.
JH: Are you with bitcoin cash doing something there?
RV: Yeah, bitcoin cash has a really fantastic thing called cash fusion. You can check it out at cashfusion.org and it basically shuffles up your coins with everybody else’s. And there’s so many different possibilities the way they get shuffled up, is that there’s more shuffle combinations than there are atoms in the entire universe. And so if you do that and then you combine that with like a reusable payment code on bitcoin cash you basically have privacy that’s in the same ballpark as a Monero or Xeno or something like that. And that’s really powerful and we want to add it right into the bitcoin.com wallet and have it turned on by default. It’s a little bit harder to do on a mobile app, but you can do it for desktop right now today using the electron cash wallet. And in fact I have it running in the background right now while i’m talking to you. It’s really neat and you can see the transactions on the blockchain and there’s dozens of inputs and dozens of outputs and all the values are different on every side. And if you look at the underlying math, for just how many combinations there are, it’s really impressive. And you would be able to do the exact same thing on bitcoin, except for that the fees are so high would cost you like a thousand dollars per shuffle. Whereas on bitcoin cash it’s less than a penny per shuffle and people will gladly pay less than a penny for some strong privacy. Sadly they’re not willing to pay a thousand dollars for it. Or maybe that’s just plain smart. They can use bitcoin cash if they want privacy and then you’ll hear some people say, oh we’ll just use lightning, because those transactions are never recorded to the blockchain. Okay, that’s true, they’re not recorded to the blockchain. But just about all the popular lightning wallets, they’re not wallets, they’re custodian accounts. And so if you’re using a custodian account, you might as well be hosted on a server at the FBI for you right there.
JH: Bitcoin Jesus. Where’s that name from?
RV: I did not choose that name for myself at all. Other people started calling me that, just because of how passionate I was about telling people about, have you heard the good news about bitcoin and I would set them up with wallets and give them some. And I’m still doing basically the same thing today with bitcoin cash, because it’s possible if I meet somebody today I can give them a dollar of bitcoin cash. If I meet somebody today, it’s impossible to give them a dollar of bitcoin, because the fees are too high on the bitcoin chain to do that.
JH: Very nice. I wanna use the second part of our talk and really kind of understand the philosophy between bitcoin and bitcoin cash, and understand the difference. In order to lead up to that and especially the 2017 fork. Can you walk us a bit through the timeline on the different philosophies there? The different ideas. And I know you’re really good at completely objectively talking about what does one party say, what does the other party say and distill the up and down sides out of it and why you made your own decision. But can you kind of work this way up a bit on this entire block size debate when did this all start from what you can remember. And then also, what’s the the role that Blockstream has in all that.
RV: Yeah, I need to write an entire book on this subject because so much happened. But it kind of started brewing originally maybe in 2014-ish I would guess. And one of the first major changes to bitcoin, that was really a big change was this thing called replace by fee and so there’s another bitcoin core developer named Peter Todd who was paid by a guy, who claimed he worked for a three-letter agency in the US, paid Peter Todd to make a video about why you need to keep the blocks small in bitcoin and then paid him to introduce this thing called replace by fee. And what replace by fee does, it allows someone on the bitcoin network, if I were to send you bitcoin and let’s say I paid 10 cents in fees at that time and you have to wait on average 10 minutes for a block to come, if the block hasn’t come yet, I can then rebroadcast that transaction instead of paying 10 cents in fees, I can pay 11 cents or 12 cents or anything more than 10 cents and send that money, that bitcoin to a different address. So I can send it back to myself or send it to somebody else or basically make the transaction reversible, until it’s been included in a block and there was a pretty heated argument within bitcoin at that point and Erik Voorhees wrote a fantastic article basically saying like, Peter Todd I respect your brain and your intellect and your contributions to the space. But please understand for the people that are trying to use this as money, this is damaging to bitcoin, being able to be usable as money. We don’t want it to be able to have reversible transactions, we want the transactions to be done and over with as soon as they’re broadcasted to the network. And replace by fee wound up going through and made live on the network.
JH: Why did it? What were their arguments? What were Peter’s argument to push it through?
RV: At the time I think, people didn’t have a full understanding of what their future roadmap for bitcoin was, but their goal was to have the blocks become full. And if the blocks became full and you didn’t pay enough and let’s say you pay 10 cents for your transaction fee and then a whole bunch of other people then paid 11 cents for their fees and you’re at the back of the line but you want your transaction to be included in the block you can then adjust your transaction from 10 cents to 12 cents and then you’re ahead of all the people that just paid 11 cents in fees. And so that was the reasoning for that, so that when the blocks become full you would be able to bounce your transactions to the front of the line. And to be fair like I don’t remember them saying that explicitly at that time and maybe I was too busy running bitcoinstore.com, that’s what wound up being the justification as to why they needed that later. And maybe there was some other underlying reason at that time but from a person that’s trying to use bitcoin as money, I don’t see any reason to have that to this very day and in fact bitcoin cash doesn’t have that. Bitcoin still does now.
JH: Because it goes with the risk that people could do an actual double spend without it being an actual double spent.
RV: It makes it easy as can be for anybody to do an actual double spend. And later on it actually became even worse than that. The average block time on both bitcoin and bitcoin cash is 10 minutes, but if the blocks are always full on bitcoin that means your transaction might not be included in the next block. So instead of just having a 10 minute window on average, to reverse your transaction or do the equivalent of a chargeback on bitcoin, at the end of 2017 the average confirmation time on the bitcoin network was more than two weeks. So that meant on average you had more than two weeks where you could do a chargeback of your bitcoin transaction, which I mean, that’s worse than just about anything. I guess credit cards give you 30 days to do a charge back, but a wire transfer you won’t be able to charge back after two weeks. Maybe you can do it after a day, but not much more than that. So that was a big problem there as well.
JH: So that’s how it all started in 2014?
RV: Yeah, that was certainly a part of the start. But the big argument where things got really heated is, what the future of bitcoin should be. So there’s this block reward, every 10 minutes the miners get some new bitcoins and so every four years half of all the remaining bitcoins get released to the miners. And so in about 120 years from now, that block reward is going to run out. And so one camp within bitcoin was okay in 120 years from now, the mining reward is going to run out so in order to solve that potential problem that might take place in 120 years from now, we need to make the fees high on bitcoin today, so that the miners are incentivised to keep mining bitcoin. And the other side of the argument, the side that I came down on was, well this is a problem maybe 120 years from now so we shouldn’t intentionally cause a bad user experience today with high fees and full blocks in an attempt to solve something that might be a problem 120 years from now. That just seemed like a stupid trade-off to me and then another part of the argument here, that the two different camps had, is the small block camp had the idea that the blocks need to stay small so that people can afford to run a full bitcoin node on a cheap computer on a home internet connection. And that way bitcoin is more difficult to shut down or more difficult to control or more difficult to turn off. There’s some truth to that argument and lots of smart people subscribe to that argument, but I think the part of what they’re not seeing, is that if you allow the blocks to become bigger and it takes a more expensive computer to run a full node or it takes a faster internet connection on a full node, but more people around the world are able to use bitcoin because it has a good user experience with fast cheap reliable transactions. Maybe you’ll wind up having a billion people around the world using bitcoin and it’ll be on a larger number of computers around the world running full node, because you have a billion people using it, instead of a few million people using it. You’ll have a lower percentage of people running a full node but it’s a higher number of absolute full nodes out there and I think it’s the total number of miners and full nodes out there, that’s important to giving bitcoin it’s censorship resistance rather than the percentage of people running full nodes. My other argument that I still think was right is, that we needed to get as much adoption in commerce and people around the world as fast as we possibly could. Because governments move slowly and politicians write new laws very slowly. So if we can get as many people around the world using it, not to buy drugs on the silk road, but getting it to buy pet food and baby diapers and whatever, old people diapers as well and you know your dinner and your lunch and grocery shopping and anything and everything. If the entire world is using it for normal stuff or at least if a lot of people are, it’ll be too late for governments to demonise it. It’ll be too late for them to make it illegal, it’ll be too late for them to push back against it. My goal was to get as much adoption in commerce and as much adoption by as many people as we possibly could, as fast as we possibly could. Whereas the people on the small block side of the argument are like, what’s the hurry, there’s no hurry. And to me there’s the hurry to outrace the politicians and then there’s the other hurry, life is short. I’m 42 now, more than half of my current expected life expectancy is already done. And it went in the the blink of an eye. I’ve been involved in bitcoin for more than 10 years now. That 10 years went that fast, I’m 42, I’m going to be 72 before I know it and there’s not a whole lot of years left after that. Hopefully we’ll be able to change that, but that’s a whole other interview subject. We want cryptocurrency to bring these benefits to the world as soon as we possibly can and so long story short there, the small block camp wasn’t in a hurry and they thought that having people be able to run full nodes on cheap computers with bad internet connections was more important or was a better strategy than having billions of people all over the world being able to use bitcoin for all sorts of commerce, even if it makes it harder to run a full node on your home computer on a home internet connection. We are where we are today, but I think the trade-off would have been way better if we had driven more adoption. Because at the end of 2017 we had companies like Microsoft that had been accepting bitcoin, they stopped accepting bitcoin. Dell computer stopped accepting bitcoin, Expedia.com stopped accepting bitcoin. It was the first time in the entire history of bitcoin in which we had reverse adoption and if that adoption hadn’t been reversed like that, everyone’s excited, oh bitcoins 50.000 dollars, maybe it would have already been half a million dollars today because the Microsofts and the Dell computers and Expedias they wouldn’t have stopped accepting bitcoin, they would have continued and maybe Amazon would have already been accepting bitcoin today. And people would be doing payroll and you’d be able to buy your pet food and baby diapers and old people diapers, all at the same time easily with bitcoin right now today. Like any good economist, you have to look at not only what’s seen but what’s not seen. And what we see is okay, Elon Musk is busy tweeting about bitcoin and dogecoin and the price is 50.000 dollars. That’s great. But where would we have been today if bitcoin had continued to have fast cheap reliable transactions and all these businesses never stopped accepting bitcoin, they just continued accepting it the whole way through. And we also wouldn’t have had a split in the community. The small blockers always said, oh you can only do soft forks, you can never have a hard fork, because it’ll split the community. And that’s why we have to do segregated witness as a soft fork and all this stuff and they still seem blind to it to this very day. They said that they can only have soft arcs because it’ll split the chain otherwise. The chain splits into 3.000 different altcoins now in addition to multiple different flavors of bitcoin. The very thing that they said they were trying to prevent, they caused by only sticking to soft forks and they still seem blind to that till this very day for whatever reason. Or they just don’t want to admit it. I don’t know which it is. So that’s my summary of years of events.
JH: What do you think it is? Do you think it’s blindness? Do you think it’s not willing to admit it? What role does Blockstream have in that?
RV: So two questions there. Which is it? I think it depends on the person. Some people can see it and don’t admit it, other people are just blind to it. There’s another friend of mine, from Tokyo, who was arguing with somebody on the internet about this very subject and he said it so clearly. He said, it’s okay, it’s hard to see the future, most people have cloudy foresight because you don’t know what’s going to happen in the future. But he told the guy, but you have cloudy hindsight. And I thought that was so true of what the situation was, because most people you can see what happened in the past to know, but this guy he definitely had cloudy hindsight. But the role Blockstream played in all this was very clear. They raised over a hundred million dollars from traditional credit card companies and insurance companies and the traditional financial system. And their entire goal there was basically to make money on top of the bitcoin platform by licensing side chains, and then lightning network and this other stuff. But the the thing to keep in mind is, that nobody needed any of their products if they didn’t cripple bitcoin itself. Bitcoin was working great and if bitcoin was working great, nobody would need any of the products that Blockstream had to offer. And so they intentionally crippled bitcoin’s usability and then tried to sell their products to fix the problems that they caused. Another thinker that I am a big fan of is a man named Harry Brown and he would talk about it. He said it’s like the government breaks your legs, it gives you crutches and then says, see if it wasn’t for the government giving you crutches you wouldn’t be able to walk. And it was kind of the exact same sort of thing with Blockstream. They intentionally crippled bitcoin’s usability as money and then they started selling their side chain liquid solution and other things and saying, see if it wasn’t for all these giant geniuses with their giant brains at Blockstream you guys wouldn’t be able to use bitcoin at all. It was really frustrating for somebody who watched it happen right before my eyes. Bitcoin went from being amazing for payments on the internet and e-commerce to not being usable at all and that’s why the community splintered into thousands of different altcoins. A lot of people also probably won’t realise this, Vitalik Buterin the creator of ethereum originally wanted to build all of ethereum on top of bitcoin. But he looked at the scaling debate and the block size argument that was happening on bitcoin and he saw that, oh well, if they’re not going to allow bitcoin to scale for more people to use it, I guess I’ll start my own chain and build ethereum on something else. And then for people that played a part in all the the different ICOs that went on, all that would have happened on bitcoin as well. Starting in maybe 2013 probably, there was another company called Counterparty, they were doing tokens on top of bitcoin. Today everybody knows tether for example as an ethereum token and now it’s on some other chains as well. Tether started out as a token on top of bitcoin, in fact you can still withdraw tether as a token on top of bitcoin from BitFinex or a number of other places and you can pay the high bitcoin fees. But all of these tokens were starting to happen on top of bitcoin and the Counterparty guys were really doing a good job and there were going to be all these amazing smart contracts and amazing things happening on top of bitcoin with tokens. The Blockstream guys and the small block guys saw that this was happening and they intentionally shortened the amount of data that could be included in the OP return of bitcoin which basically made it so that all these tokens and the stuff that was starting to happen, on top of bitcoin, no longer was possible. They intentionally crippled bitcoin and reduced its ability to do things and it was a disaster. All this amazing stuff would have happened on top of bitcoin if they hadn’t intentionally time after time again with step after step limited bitcoins ability to be useful to people to do these amazing things with cryptocurrency. And now they’re busy trying to license their liquid side chain and if you have an exchange they’ll gladly charge you a bunch of money and help you set up your liquid side chain to deal with all the congestion and high fees on the bitcoin network. Well, those are problems that they caused by their policy of limiting the block size on bitcoin.
JH: What about your belief, the market is always right? And obviously today the concept is, that bitcoin has a way larger exposure, I don’t know the exact holder numbers but I would assume more people hold BTC than BCH at the moment.
JH: How do you see that? Do you believe the market is wrong in that case?
RV: I don’t think I’ve ever said that the market is always right. The market sometimes is wrong as a whole, compared to individual people’s preferences. And so the market isn’t one single thing, it’s billions of people all interacting together. And the end result is the market and the prices and the goods that are out there. And so at the moment, more people prefer to hold their money in bitcoin than bitcoin cash out there. But it’s certainly not because of its usability as money. I think most people, they just see the bitcoin name and they see the 50.000 dollar price point and they think, oh this must be fantastic. And there’s really interesting human experiments, you can go and see these videos on YouTube. One example of it is they’re on the street and they ask people hey are you willing to do a taste test for chocolate cake and of course people like chocolate cake so they say, yeah i’ll do a taste test for chocolate cake and they say, okay we’re gonna give you two pieces of chocolate cake. The first piece is from a 15 dollar cake the second piece is from a 100 dollar cake and we want you to tell us the difference between the 15 dollar piece of cake and the 100 dollar piece of cake there. And the people eat the 15 dollar piece of cake and they say, oh it’s not bad it tastes pretty good and they eat the 100 dollar piece of cake and say, oh it was so moist and delicious and this was an absolutely wonderful piece of cake, I can see why it’s so expensive. And the reality is, that they were two pieces from the exact same cake baked in the same oven and part of the exact same cake. And so psychologically people are like, oh it’s expensive, it must be better and so they see that and the peer pressure is incredibly strong too. There’s another example. There’s six people or something in an elevator, they’re all actors and then one guy who’s not an actor gets in. He doesn’t know it’s part of an experiment and everybody in the elevator turns around and they face backwards in the elevator and everybody all the time. You learn you face forward towards the door of course. But he sees all the other people in the elevator face backwards, so what does this guy do? He faces backwards too and then the elevator stops the next door and then everybody in the elevator, they rotate to the right and they’re just pointing towards the side of the elevator and this guy does it too. And it’s just the peer pressure is so incredibly strong and I guess that kind of ties us into when the censorship started within bitcoin, that had a huge effect. So the civil war, the argument over the block size of bitcoin was brewing and the big block side, the side that eventually became bitcoin cash had the upper hand in terms of hash power on the network, it had more than 51 percent of the hash power and it had the majority of the people that were discussing on the message boards and advocating for that sort of thing. And when that happened, the guy that controlled the main discussion platform which was r/bitcoin and bitcointalk.org, and people they like to say, oh it’s not that big a deal. At that time, especially r/bitcoin on reddit had more people getting their bitcoin news from there, than every single other bitcoin website combined. So it was a really big deal and then all of a sudden overnight that guy engaged in this massive censorship campaign where anybody that was advocating for bitcoin to be able to scale on chain, would have their post deleted and their account banned from being able to post. It was the biggest revolt ever in the history of bitcoin there, the highest thread ever upvoted on r/bitcoin was a thread calling for an end to the censorship and a call for that moderator named Theymos to step down and remove himself as a moderator and it had thousands of upvotes and thousands of comments and everybody was really piling on saying, hey we support censorship resistant money and we support free speech. And what happened to that thread on r/bitcoin, he deleted that thread as well and banned a bunch of the people that were participating it. And to this very day r/bitcoin is still completely censored. A lot of people don’t realise that, because you’re not allowed to even mention the censorship there. But then what happened is all the people that came to bitcoin after the censorship started and they only saw one side of the story there and everybody around them is saying, oh bitcoin cash is a scam. Roger’s a scammer. Blockstream is great. Lightning will solve all these problems. If you hear everybody around you saying something and you’re not allowed to hear the other arguments, you only hear it from one or two people you believe it. Just like every little kid in the world believes in Santa Claus, because every single person around them tells them that it’s wonderful. So many people in cryptocurrency, they think lightning network is going to solve all our problems or said that’s going to solve all our problems, because everybody around them says it. But it’s just plain not true. You can look at it, SegWit’s been activated for years now. It didn’t solve all the scaling problems. Almost everybody that’s using lightning network, they’re just using a custodial platform to do it. But everybody around them is busy saying, oh lightning network’s amazing, this is amazing, that’s amazing. Stop and think for yourself. We see it, it is human nature, but if everybody in the elevator is facing the back, don’t face the back too. Just do your own thing, face forward. And it happens time and time again and it’s really frustrating to see just how compliant people are and how strong that peer pressure is, where people go along with the crowd. I think that’s a big part of what we’re seeing with bitcoin right now, it’s where all the cool kids are, it’s the 50.000 dollar price tag. It has the cool bitcoin name, how could it be wrong? I think if you stop and think for a moment, even if everybody else is facing the back of the elevator. There’s no reason you need to face the back of the elevator too. And even if everybody else thinks or says on social media, bitcoin is amazing and this not. Think for yourself, there’s a lot of amazing coins out there. Bitcoin’s not the only one and I think the two coins that are the front runner for becoming peer-to-peer cash for the world are all the ethereum based coins. Now there’s a bunch of clones out there as well and then bitcoin cash. Something that costs 15 dollars per transaction, everybody has to use a custodial account to use it, that’s not going to become the money for the world, even though it has such a cool brand name and “brand recognition” like bitcoin does. But the user experience will not overcome that indefinitely. The other thing though, maybe that will happen, maybe they’ll solve those user experience issues with bitcoin. Maybe they’ll get lightning network to work in a non-custodial way, where your transactions can’t be censored and everything works and you know we all sing kumbaya ever after because we have peer-to-peer uncensorable anonymous cash for the world. If that happens, great I’ll start promoting that. But it’s nowhere even near close to being ready for that today. In fact I spent a good chunk of my afternoon testing different lightning wallets and just about all of them were basically unusable or the ones that kind of were usable, I was just using an account and like somebody else had the money and I wasn’t actually doing anything myself. And I think that’s what most of these lightning network users are, they don’t realise that they’re just using a custodian account not any different than Paypal.
JH: What was that moderator’s incentive to pick sites?
RV: I guess it could be two things. It could be that he genuinely believed he was doing the right thing and maybe he thought that the ends justify the means and he was willing to do all sorts of immoral means to achieve his ends. But another philosopher thinker I’m a fan of Carl Watner pointed out to me as a young man, that there’s no such thing as that the means justify the end’s but the means are the ends. If you use a bunch of coercion to try and achieve a noble goal, all you wind up with is a whole bunch of coercion. And so if you use a whole bunch of censorship to try and maintain bitcoin censorship resistance, well using a bunch of censorship to maintain censorship resistance is, you get the exact opposite, all you wind up with implementing a bunch of censorship is a bunch of censorship. So maybe he was just mistaken. The other interesting theory here is, that we know that the US government and the CIA was interested in bitcoin from at least 2010. So a long time ago and even I remember very clearly, there were social media manipulation going on in June of 2013 when bitcoin hit 30 dollars for the first time. The bitcoin talk forum became unusable, all these brand new accounts that nobody recognised, nobody knew were busy just posting all this fluff comments on the forum saying, buy, sell, oh no it’s going up, oh it’s going down. And they weren’t doing it to be funny though, they did it to make the forum unusable because it was a small community back then, everybody knew everybody else and recognised the screen names. At the time when bitcoin was getting its first taste of worldwide media attention, the main platform where people were able to discuss bitcoin became unusable by all these bot accounts. And so basically they shut down the ability of people to be able to discuss bitcoin as early as June of 2011. I don’t have any evidence of the next step here, but maybe if someone was a government and you have a central bank, where you can print as many dollars or euros or whatever at any time for any reason to spend and give to all your friends and you know bribe your constituents to vote for you in the next election, you wouldn’t want something like bitcoin to become money for the entire world. And if you read the CIA’s own handbook, the way they try to disrupt social movements or any sort of movement is they try to get leadership positions and they try to get you know moderator positions on the main discussion platforms and then they try to cause fighting there and then they also engage in censorship there. So it’s straight out of the CIAs handbook how to disrupt movements. That’s exactly what happened to bitcoin and so maybe Theymos, we don’t know his real name, maybe he’s a CIA guy whose job it was to delay the adoption of cryptocurrencies around the world because it’s hard to think of a more effective strategy. Because you can’t shut down the internet all over the world, you can’t arrest all the miners, you can’t arrest every single person that’s trying to use it around the world. But you can disrupt the community and you can splinter what used to be this one unified bitcoin that had a mission to become money for the entire world. You can share that. There’s more than 3.000 different cryptocurrencies now and even more if you count all the tokens on top of those cryptocurrencies. What an incredibly effective way to delay the adoption of peer-to-peer electronic cash for the world. And then to change the narrative, instead of bitcoin being a peer-to-peer electronic cash system, the narrative is now completely changed to, oh bitcoin is just digital gold. Digital gold is much less threatening to central banks and government control of the money around the world and the flow of money and taxes. It’s much less threatening than a peer-to-peer electronic cash system would be. So with my conspiracy theory hat on, wow what an effective way to delay and disrupt and hinder the adoption of bitcoin for the world. I couldn’t think of a more effective way to have achieved that, than what actually wound up taking place. And then to start demonising the people that were actually trying to spread it as peer-to-peer electronic cash for the world. People like myself or Jihan Wu the founder of Bitmain that people like to to demonise as well for the bitcoin maximalist. He was literally the person that translated the bitcoin white paper from english into chinese and spread bitcoin to China and then myself, with the help of one of my employees, I did the same thing translated the bitcoin white paper into japanese and I translated the entire bitcoin.org website into japanese and spread that all to Japan as well. And then to the english speaking world of course. Myself and Jihan are two of the people that have done some of the most to spread bitcoin to the world and we’re two of the people that these bitcoin maximalists that support censorship, they love to attack and hate us and claim that we’re attacking bitcoin. I see it at the exact opposite and Jihan and I have supported free speech the whole way through as well. Same story with Gavin Andresen, the guy that Satoshi Nakamoto literally left the keys to the bitcoin project with, when he disappeared. Gavin got driven away from the project and they literally revoked his keys from the the GitHub repository.
JH: Who’s they?
RV: The Blockstream employees, Greg Maxwell and, I think, Wladimir van der Laan and Luke-Jr and these sorts of guys. And Gavin Andresen said in a tweet not too long ago, he said that bitcoin cash is what he started working on in 2010, both the store of value and the medium of exchange. And today bitcoin isn’t that, but 50.000 dollars is nice and the bitcoin name is nice, but it’s not exciting from the standpoint of, let’s enable every single human being on the planet to have the ability to transact with every other human being on the planet without needing permission. Because today for the most part with bitcoin, you need to use a custodian account to do that and if you need a custodian, it’s not permissionless anymore.
JH: Let’s talk about summer 2017. What led up to those events, specifically there with Barry Silbert. How did the fork happen? And then also how did the other fork later that year into bitcoin cash and bitcoin satoshi vision.
RV: Lots happened there, so there was what was called the new york agreement and there was a meeting in New York, that I didn’t attend myself. I sent Jake Smith was his name, from bitcoin.com, I sent to that meeting. CEOs of basically all the major businesses were there at this meeting and they were trying to negotiate an agreement to not have bitcoin split. And so initially the people like Gavin Andresen, myself and they were talking about let’s make the maximum block size eight gigabytes and then it went from eight gigabytes to, okay we’ll go, 1, 2, 4, 8 gigabytes and then it went to, okay maybe 200 megabytes. And then, okay maybe we’ll go, 2, 4, 8, 16 on and on for a while and then they said, okay how about 20 megabytes. And they said okay how about 2, 4, 8 megabytes. So we went from eight gigabytes at the start of the negotiation there, the final negotiation was, okay how about two megabytes. We’ll increase the block size from one megabyte to two megabytes and the agreement there was, that they would implement this thing called segregated witnesswhich shuffles around the data storage in the blocks and they would implement in a block size base, block size increase from one megabyte to two megabytes. And everybody came together and agreed to that. The part where I think if I had been there, I like to think I wouldn’t have succumbed to the peer pressure, but peer pressure is incredibly strong. For some reason everybody there agreed to allow the segregated witness part to be implemented first and then the one megabyte to two megabyte block size increase would happen second. But everybody seemed to be on board with that, you had like 99 percent of the hash rate signalling for that and the other one percent just wasn’t signalling at all. All the businesses were on board, everything was happening and it seemed like, okay bitcoin was back on track again. There was a small group that I guess as a contingency plan or they didn’t really trust things to go through smoothly, because segregated witness is a change that you can’t undo later and lots of Devs for whatever reason, they don’t like segregated witness and they think it clutters things and makes it more difficult for them to do things in the future and that’s not something that I have an opinion on, one way or another, but I know there certainly was and still is a camp that feel that way about segregated witness. Segregated witness then activated on the network and everything was smooth up to that everyone was quiet like it seemed like the community was kind of back, kind of singing Kumbaya together again and happy to be a big family again and segregated witness activated. And as soon as segregated witness activated, then all these people came out of the woodwork saying no to two megabyte, we’re not going to do the two megabyte upgrade. And they literally they would DDos attack any nodes that were supporting it, they had attacked bitcoin.com and flooded every single person’s email inbox there. They were attacking our nodes. Certain people even had the SWAT team called on them, where people would call the local police and lie and claim there’s a hostage situation, get the SWAT team sent to people’s houses and it was really nasty, horrible stuff that was going on there. And they successfully got the community to abort the one megabyte to two megabyte block size increase there And it wasn’t until that had happened, that the one megabyte to two megabyte increase was aborted, which was a couple months after segregated witness had already been implemented. Then I looked around, I said, bitcoin with one megabyte blocks, there’s no way this can ever scale to be peer-to-peer electronic cash for the world. Which is what I’m interested in, what I’ve been interested in for a decade plus before bitcoin had ever even been invented. I want peer-to-peer cash for the world so, I looked around at the cryptocurrency ecosystem and thought what is the coin that has the best chance of becoming peer-to-peer electronic cash for the world. And of all the coins that were out there in existence at that point, it looked to me that bitcoin cash had the best chance of doing that, because every single person that held bitcoin in August of 2017, they now still had bitcoin and they had bitcoin cash. And so you had this equally fair distribution to bitcoin itself and fast, cheap, reliable payments for the world and a team that actually wanted it to scale to be money for the world. Now there’s also interest in Monero and other currencies out there as well.
JH: Why not litecoin? I mean I guess a lot of people at that point were obviously also asking why not litecoin?
RV: Litecoin didn’t have bitpay, so it didn’t have the hundred thousand merchants from bitpay. It didn’t have blockchain.info, which is still the biggest wallet in the entire world out there. Litecoin was definitely in the contention for that part there. The big part that I really didn’t like about litecoin was just Charlie Lee’s complete and utter lack of understanding of the economics as to why bitcoin became popular and why it was popular to begin with. And he was the lead developer for litecoin and I was concerned that litecoin was going to have problems in the future because of that. And then the other part there, that was just an interesting side story, Charlie Lee just had a horrible attitude the entire way through all of this towards bitcoin cash and at one point Luke-Jr is a really smart developer, but he’s also a space cadet out there in la la land compared to most other people. But sometimes he’s exactly right so Charlie Lee was on twitter calling bitcoin cash just a cheap knock off of bitcoin and Luke-Jr replied to him, he said that’s awfully ironic coming from the guy who created litecoin. And I thought that was a pretty good point from Luke on that day, and Luke-Jr is the guy who came up with segregated witness how to do that as a soft fork. So Luke’s a smart guy but he’s also crazy on some other topics, for example he thinks the pope is not catholic and he thinks masturbation is worse than mass murder because all this billions of sperm cell dies every time so he definitely sees the world differently than most people in the world. Litecoin was a contender there as well but I still think bitcoin cash and ethereum are the other two front runners at this point, just because the huge amount of adoption and traction they have and ethereum has a bigger ecosystem at the moment, but bitcoin cash doesn’t have the same technical scaling problems that ethereum is running into at the moment. And then bitcoin just has social scaling problems. And monero is awesome, it just doesn’t have the bitcoin name. And you’re already having entire countries like Japan, like Korea and others where they tell every single exchange in the country, you are not allowed to list monero, because it’s too private. And that’s a big problem for adoption, whereas with bitcoin cash, you can say, oh the blockchain’s completely transparent it’s just as transparent as bitcoin. But you also have this stuff that sits above the base layer protocol like cash fusion that gives you a really strong privacy on bitcoin cash, so I kind of feel like that has the best of both worlds. But I hear a lot of bitcoin maximus, well if you really believe in bitcoin cash, why don’t you sell all your other coins and just buy that one. No that would be stupid. You don’t just buy one stock in the stock market, you buy a portfolio of stocks. If you’re going to be involved in crypto, have a nice portfolio of stocks. I don’t just have bitcoin cash, I have plenty of lots of other coins out there as well and I think that’s smart for anybody to do. I’ve never ever been a bitcoin maximalist ever in fact even in the earliest days of bitcoin, a lot of people don’t know this, but it wouldn’t be inaccurate in any way whatsoever to call me a co-founder of ripple. I literally put up the seed money to start ripple Jed McCaleb came up with the idea and he came to me and said, Roger are you willing to fund a new coin that doesn’t require mining. He said he thinks bitcoin mining is wasteful, I have an idea how to make bitcoin that doesn’t need mining. I said, sure Jed, I’ll put up the money to do that. I think that was in 2012, I put up the money that then paid David Schwartz to build what later became ripple. Same story with Zcoin as well, gave them the money to get Zcoin off the ground. I wasn’t in the seed round for Zcash but I was the the biggest investor in their next round after they had a little bit of seed money there as well. Because I want peer-to-peer cash for the entire world that enables every single human being on the planet to do whatever they want with their own money and not need permission and I don’t care if it’s bitcoin, bitcoin cash, Zcash, monero, dash. Take your pick out of the thousands of different cryptocurrencies, I just want something that works for all of humankind and I want it as soon as we possibly can have it. And that’s what i’m still busy working on today and I like bitcoin cash so much, because I think it’s the one that’s the closest to being able to reach and achieve that goal for the world.
JH: Fair enough. How do you see regulation coming into this right now? Do you see governments cracking down, taxation, unrealised gain tax. Global socialism, I mean a lot of kind of trends go this way.
RV: Yeah, it’s difficult. And we’re seeing governments all over the world now, one of their top priorities are locking people down for with Covid is the excuse and then two, keeping on all this crypto stuff and figuring out what they’re going to do about that. It’s a problem and that’s why I wanted to get as much adoption as fast as we possibly could. And I think that still should be the strategy, is as much adoption for as many people as fast as you possibly can before the politicians have a chance to react. But they’re certainly keeping an eye on this and starting to react now. Which, if anything means, that’s why we should move even faster now so they don’t have a chance to put a big roadblock in any of this. And we’ve seen a lot of people and shoutout to John McAfee, a great superstar in this ecosystem, he’s in jail in the US right now. He’s a 70-something-year-old man and he said, he’s not going to pay his taxes for it and boom they tossed him in jail for that. And then there was another guy that ran some sort of bitcoin privacy mixing tool, they tossed him in jail. They’re busy picking off people one at a time. It’s a really big problem and I’d like to see more people, at the very least, speak out against that if not what I’d like to see more than that, is build tools to prevent that sort of thing from being able to happen at all. But we need to hurry up and that’s what governments do, is they look at who has the money and how they can take it from them and then they go and take it and if you resist ultimately, they’ll kill you over it. So watch out.
JH: Roger, I know it’s getting super late for you, so for me last question, unless you want to add anything, but my last question would be: What do you feel is, and I think everything starts with mindset, what is the necessary change of mind, that the crypto space needs at the moment?
RV: I think too many people view bitcoin just as a get rich quick method, but they should be viewing cryptocurrencies as a tool to empower every single human being on the planet, to have complete control over their own money. And if you can do that, then the rate of economic growth for the entire planet increases and it’s just like the miracle of compound interest, the miracle of compounded economic growth makes everybody better off, rich and poor, black or white, young or old and so this is literally the best tool we have to improve the lives of every single human being on the planet. But the tool that does that, is the peer-to-peer electronic cash, the digital gold doesn’t have nearly as big of an effect on that. So maybe digital gold can have one percent of the effect of improvement, compared to 100 percent effect for peer-to-peer electronic cash. So we need to be focusing on this as a tool to empower individuals to be able to engage in commerce without needing permission, not just some sort of speculative asset. And I’d like to see more people shift and understand that and a great way to shift and understand that, the benefits of that is to go and pick up “economics in one lesson” by Henry Hazlitt. You can get it completely for free online from the foundation for economic education or you can buy it with bitcoin or bitcoin cash on amazon using purse.io. But if you use bitcoin, it’ll cost you an extra 10 or 15 dollars in network fees there. But a fantastic book that everybody should read, in fact I just bought a thousand copies of it that i’m donating to a bunch of school kids in Antigua. Every single school kid’s going to get to read a copy of “economics in one lesson” and when they have read it and they send us an email telling us what they thought, we’re going to give each and every one of them a 100 eastern caribbean dollars of bitcoin cash as well. I’m excited to be spreading peer-to-peer electronic cash for the world and you can’t do that on bitcoin today, just because the fees are too high. Otherwise I would have still been doing it on bitcoin.
JH: Roger, I really appreciate the time. If there’s only one last tweet on your twitter, what is the last tweet standing?
RV: I don’t know. You’ll know when you see it. I wasn’t prepared to answer that question but anybody who sees this in Germany or around the world. My assistant’s gonna hate me for giving such a big number, but the first thousand people that watch this video and if you email [email protected], we’ll email you back a dollar of bitcoin cash on chain, as an actual on-chain transaction. And I would have done it with bitcoin, I used to do it with bitcoin, but you can’t do it because the fees are too high. So just send an email to [email protected] and mention this video here with Julian and we’ll send you a dollar bitcoin cash right there on chain. That if bitcoin cash are becoming money for the world, it could easily become worth a thousand dollars someday or a thousand euros. Please give it a try, [email protected] and we’ll email it to you.
JH: Roger, I know not everyone sees it always the same way but I will always remember the contribution you make for the space. You had a massive personal impact on me, that’s why I think it’s always super important to bring different opinions to the table. Even if it’s maybe the minority opinion at the moment, that’s fine. But I really appreciate that. Really fantastic and keep being awesome.
RV: And I appreciate the platform too, thank you so much.
JH: Roger, thanks.
Links & Resources
Follow Roger Ver on Twitter: https://twitter.com/rogerkver
Follow Roger Ver on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/rogerver
For more information on Bitcoin Cash, click here: https://bitcoincash.org/