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Cryptocurrency fuels freedom and is here to stay

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Cryptocurrencies had a rough ride in 2018. Early last January, the total capitalisation of all cryptocurrencies tracked by CoinMarketCap.com came to more than US$800 billion (Bt25 trillion), its highest point ever.

As I write this, that total market capitalisation is down to about $130 billion – about a sixth of the market’s highest point.
You might be surprised to learn that I’m still a cryptocurrency fan. It’s not because I’m sitting on a huge pile of the stuff (as of this moment, my cryptocurrency holdings are worth less than $100) or because I expect to make a killing speculating.
I’m still enthusiastic about the currency because I’ve seen what it can do and I can make plausible predictions about what it will be able to do in the future. Cryptocurrency takes control of money from governments and puts it in the hands of people. With improvements in its privacy aspects, this is only going to become truer. But can it last? Will it win? I think that the last year, far from dispelling that notion, reinforces it. Let me explain:
Two kinds of noise related to cryptocurrency seem to have faded in tandem with the market’s downward trend. 
As one might expect, the ultra-bullish “Bitcoin will go to $100,000 real soon now!” voices have gone down. But so have the voices comparing cryptocurrency to a Ponzi scheme or to the 17th-century “tulip bubble”.
Yes, there are exceptions. One is Nobel-winning economist Paul Krugman, who still seems to think that transaction costs and lack of “tethers” to fiat government currencies will make crypto a bad bet.
Of course, Krugman also said, in 1998, that “by 2005 or so, it will become clear that the Internet’s impact on the economy has been no greater than the fax machine’s”. So however expert he may be in other areas, I doubt I’m alone in discounting his predictive abilities when it comes to technological advancements.
This yearlong market correction has been exactly that – a correction toward real values. After a period of hype (“Initial Coin Offerings” based on bizarre-use cases) and scams (“pump and dump” cons based on new fly-by-night “altcoins”), the wheat is being separating from the chaff, fraud is settling down and the financial “mainstream” attitude has gone from dismissive to curious.
Cryptocurrency is getting better and better at what it was meant to do. 
It facilitates transactions without regard to political borders, it safeguards records of transactions through a distributed ledger system (“blockchain”), and to varying degrees (depending on which currency and the individual user’s habits) it protects the privacy of those who use it from prying eyes.
Cryptocurrency, and the freedom it entails, are here to stay. 
Thomas Knapp

Published : January 04, 2019