Fight the banks with Bitcoin Not Bombs

March 25th, 2013

Cyprus officials proposed to tax all bank deposits in Cyprus leading to lines at the ATMs and an emergency bank holiday thwart a run on the bank… oh and riots. A tentative agreement was made between these officials, the European Union (EU) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to freeze accounts to cover the country’s debt has drawn international attention. In response an explosion rocked a Bank of Cyprus branch in Limassol.

When I see broken windows I know economic recovery is right around the corner… just kidding.

Meanwhile, the Dollar Vigilante is reporting the first Bitcoin ATM location in Cyprus, and  I can’t help but wonder if it wouldn’t be more effective, to fight the banks with Bitcoin not bombs.

According to reports the explosion was caused by an “improvised explosive device” or IED, thrown by two masked men who broke into the main entrance of the branch. The bomb blew out the front of the bank location and caused a fire. Cyprus police quickly blocked off the area, and no injuries were reported. The attack was recorded by the bank’s security cameras and the video is currently being assessed by police.

There are also reports of a second explosion, but there are currently no details.

Banks in Cyprus have been closed for the last week and when the open again ATMs will have a withdrawl limit of 100 euros per day. While the government conspires to seize the people’s money by nefarious means, the market has already devised a way to protect it.

Bitcoin ATM is set to launch their first ATM in Cyprus, which would give depositors 100% control of their funds without the risk of freeze. This wouldn’t be the first attempt to integrate the Bitcoin currency in Cyprus. There was talk at one time of a much anticipated Bitcoin Mastercard, but if the credit card company is going to drag it’s feet the Bitcoin economy will simply pass them up, and now it has.

For the uninitiated, Bitcoin is a virtual commodity quickly being adopted as the native currency of the Internet. It utilizes a peer-to-peer network requiring no central bank, corporation or government. Transfers are virtually instantaneous, potentially anonymous, and global in scope. Best of all it’s free to start.

The Bitcoin ATM allows new adopters to literally trade fiat money for Bitcoin on the street, removing much of learning curve faced by adopters now. And if they wish they also deposit Bitcoin and receive fiat currency, but I’m not sure why you’d want to.

Jeff Berwick of the Dollar Vigilante writes:

“We want to roll out these ATMs as quickly as possible. Very obvious first locations would be in nations which are currently undergoing capital controls such as Argentina and Iran. But, even more than that, there are communities of freedom minded individuals sprouting up all over the world. A few bitcoin ATMs in the free state, New Hampshire, where thousands of freedom loving agorists have already moved is a no brainer.”

These masked bombers in Cyprus broke some windows. They didn’t hurt the banking institutions. They just expressed some rage and provoked a completely predictable police response. They didn’t change hearts. They didn’t free minds. But imagine if instead they had simply dumped all their euros in a Bitcoin ATM and advised their friends to do the same? Before long the banking institutions won’t be able to afford windows.

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About the Author: Davi Barker

In grade school Davi refused to recite the pledge of allegiance because he didn't understand what it meant. He was ordered to do as he was told. In college he spent hours scouring through the congressional record trying to understand this strange machine. That's where he discovered Dr. Ron Paul. In 2007 he joined the End The Fed movement and found a political home with the libertarians. The Declaration of Independence claims that the government derives its power “from the consent of the governed." He does not consent.