January 25, 2014

Tony in Florida writes:

You asked about the status of BitCoin. Here’s what the U.S . Constitution says about coinage:

“The Congress shall have Power to coin Money (and) regulate the Value thereof.”

“No State shall coin Money (or) make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts.”

So, where does BitCoin fit in with all this? Can a Federal bank accept BitCoin and pay up value in dollars in payment of debts? Can a State bank accept BitCoin and pay up value in dollars in payment of debts? Then why do some banks do it? Is it for anonymity in drug dealing and “dark site” trading?

One of the many virtues of BitCoin is that their transactions are untraceable (except by the NSA) until tendered for dollars, gold or silver. Trading profits along the way go unreported to, and undiscovered by, the IRS, in America and around the world. This is an irresistible advantage of BitCoin over other forms of coinage. They should pay Jamie Dimond in BitCoin. Then he wouldn’t have to pay any taxes at all.

Does anyone, including the U.S. Supreme Court, actually read and think about the document known as the U.S. Constitution? Or do we just say whatever we wished it said, such as the proposition that financial influence of our legislators and public officials constitutes protected “free speech,” or Corporations (unmentioned in the Constitution) are “persons” with all the rights of persons including free speech (but not any of the liabilities of actual human persons, such as serving in the military draft, serving time in the federal or state penitentiary for acts of criminal nature, or being executed in Texas?

Well, cheer up, we can always buy our way out of almost any cul-de-sac — if we use BitCoin.



Posted by Jerome Doolittle at January 25, 2014 03:37 PM
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So it's clear, is it not, that our entire monetary system in the US is unconstitutional?

“The Congress shall have Power to coin Money” but it doesn't do so. Money comes from the Federal Reserve, which is a private corporation barely even influenceable by Congress. Gold and silver coins are the only legal tender? Where are they then?

The thing is, one can argue Bitcoin avoids the constitutionality thing by being a form of barter. Is making a calculation the same thing as coining money in the constitutional sense? A smart lawyer could milk a lot of coin out of that conundrum.

Posted by: Chuck Dupree on January 25, 2014 7:51 PM

Hereabouts we've come to exchange one hour of work against one hour of work whenever possible. Sounds fair and reasonable to me.

Posted by: Peter on January 27, 2014 6:11 AM
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