November 30, 2023

Forward to the digital Middle Ages: why bitcoin needs a systemic crisis for success

In 2016, the European Commission estimated potential losses in the event of the collapse of the Schengen zone at $18 billion. Then Europecovered the so-called migration crisis, andthe populists straddled the wave of popular discontent with the softness and tolerance of the elites. It seemed that the problems that had been accumulating for decades would lead to the failure of the European project, but this did not happen. Four years later, the coronavirus pandemic put the established order on the brink of extinction.


For ForkLog, the topic covered is unusual, howeverThe current tectonic shifts in politics and economics will one way or another have a significant impact on everyone, regardless of whether they use Bitcoin. In addition, the current crisis &#8212; This is the very opportunity for Bitcoin to accomplish what Satoshi Nakamoto created it for. Become money. Let's talk about this.

Wall movement

At the end of January, when the virus was raging only interritory of China and neighboring Asian countries, one could observe how at the airports of the region Caucasians literally shy away from people who, in their understanding, are Chinese or similar to the Chinese. Such sentiments, of course, were condemned by the Western media, which called on everyone to maintain common sense and refuse discrimination. Developed countries should help those who are in trouble, as in the story of the migration crisis &#8212; that was the thesis. There were countless stories on television about the valor of Chinese doctors, and indeed the Chinese themselves.

Dr. Lee occupied a special place in the British pressWenliang, who wanted to warn everyone about the epidemic back in December, but the story was hushed up by the police. Numerous articles have cited Wenliang as an example when talking about the infringement of human rights and the lack of transparency of the Chinese government. The now deceased doctor even ended up on the cover of GQ Hype with the headline: &#171;The Man Who Tried to Warn Us&#187;.

Praising China for its efficiency, but chastising it forviolation of human rights &#8212; The West called for tolerance and respect for each other, although even then, each government probably formed a group that was engaged in calculations for a “rainy day.”

Open borders, millions of tourists, thousandsflights per day &#8212; there is probably no better reservoir for the virus than a united Europe. And so it happened &#8212; the hotbed was Italy, an ineffective southern democracy that turned out to be completely unprepared for a repeat of medieval history.

At a time of need, Germany blocked exportsmedical products, fearing shortages within the country. In Italy they called it a “slap in the face.” Requests for assistance were not responded to in Brussels either &#8212; Against the backdrop of the threat, EU countries unilaterally began to close their borders, and the Schengen zone virtually ceased to exist. Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic told a similar story:


&#171;There is no international or European solidarity. These are all fairy tales on paper.

Against this background, it is interesting to watch how China offers assistance to everyone, trying to restore a pretty spoiled reputation.


Man to man is a wolf when it comes to life and death, and not about free trade.

In &#171;Diary of a Plague Year&#187; Defoeit is said that all the countries of Europe stopped trading with England, isolating the whole country in fear. This is understandable, because the plague was not treated, there was no international solidarity. There was no reason to help, and there was nothing to help. Defoe talks about the cruelty that residents of villages near London showed to townspeople who fled from the disease. Even apparently healthy people were considered undesirable elements and uninvited guests &#8212; there was no talk of mutual assistance.

Compare England in 1665 with modern Europe&#8212; this seems crazy. The coronavirus is being treated, there seems to be no hostility due to constant wars for spheres of influence, everyone trades duty free and promotes common values. However, it turned out that there are much more parallels than we would like to admit.

The military and foreigners are about to appear on the streetsdeported to their homeland, mandatory quarantines and emergency regimes are introduced. Walls appeared where no one could have imagined them back in early March. Is this temporary? Or are we moving into a new era, conventionally calleddigital middle ages?


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According to the South China Morning Post, the world's totalby March 22, 287 546 cases of coronavirus were registered, 89 306 people recovered, 12 748 died. Over the past day in Russia revealed 61 cases of coronavirus. Of these, 54 are in Moscow. The total number of patients with COVID-19 in Russia reached 367, 16 recovered, more than 52 thousand remain under observation. Some amazing shots about how different countries of the world live in quarantine - in our selection #Coronavirus # Quarantine # Self-isolation

A post shared by Russian edition of Forbes (@ forbes.russia) on Mar 22, 2020 at 11:26 am PDT

Cataclysm effect

History shows that radical changes inthe structure of the world occurred only after large-scale cataclysms. You don't have to go far &#8212; The First World War brought down the major monarchies, the civil war in Russia led to the emergence of the USSR, which determined the history of an entire century and still defines it in some countries, the Great Depression led to a sharp increase in the popularity of the NSDAP in Germany, the Second World War led to the formation of the current world order under the auspices of the UN The Holocaust to some extent brought the emergence of Israel closer, and the collapse of the USSR led to the adoption of the Western model of economics and government in most European countries and, in fact, the emergence of a united Europe.

It's hard to say whether the 2008 financial crisisyears of such a cataclysm. Most likely, it was not, because the system has not changed globally, although it has cracked. Some countries in Europe have not recovered from bankruptcies so far, including Italy, which is not the first time that European values ​​have been denied help.

The 2008 crisis is associated with the advent ofBitcoin, but for 11 years of existence, the first cryptocurrency could not become alternative money. It was turned into a product / investment asset, allowed into an established system, tightly connected with traditional money, thereby completely replacing the meaning.

And the point is that Bitcoin was notcreated for trading on exchanges paired with the US dollar. It was created in order to solve a problem that arose in 1913 &#8212; when the world went to war and turned on the printing press.

Cataclysms of the 20th century greatly influenced understandingof money. Money backed by gold tended to end, which was equivalent to defeat in wars or at least concessions. The printing press solved the problem of the short duration of wars, plunging the world into a blood bath.

After World War I, particularly savvy economistsreplaced concepts and blamed economic problems for being tied to gold, not the thirst for the colonialists, which led to the complete rejection of the Austrian school in favor of spending and consumption, which have reached an uncontrolled scale right now.

There is no point in beating around this idea.&#8212; To change the values ​​of modern society, including its attitude towards money and its purpose, a cataclysm on a planetary scale is necessary. He will tear down boundaries where they exist and establish them where there were none before.

Will those provoked by coronavirus outgrowrestrictions on human rights and freedoms and escalated conflicts in such a catastrophe &#8212; It's hard to say yet. Perhaps the situation is being used to test how quickly and easily the planet and its inhabitants can be locked down if necessary. Perhaps someone will go further than just &#171;teachings&#187;.

In this context, you can recall September 11,after which the fear of terrorism was imposed on the residents of the United States and other Western countries so that they voluntarily agreed to take off their shoes at airports, take fingerprints and smile at all 32 under millions of surveillance cameras.


In the near future, some countries will implement CBDC with a digital printing press, withdraw cash from circulation and establish total control over the people's financial life.

If quarantine resets the economy and smoothlyIf it is transformed into a new world order with more stringent rules and boundaries, then the resistance will go into digital space. What used to be called revolutionary activity, the struggle for freedom and individualism will migrate to the Internet.

But the Internet, monopolized by Google and Facebook, will never let this happen. To do this, you need a new Internet and new money.

Many people ask what is needed for Bitcoin to succeed. Need a disaster.


Nick schteringard