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Bitcoin currency (merged topics)

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FreeLancer:
This digital currency supposedly is secure, inflation proof, and freaking out governments/banks because they can't control it.  Anyone looked into this?

backwoods_engineer:
I just started using it about a month ago.  It's quite difficult to buy BitCoin without either mailing cash to some company (e.g., Mt. Gox) or buying in to an offshore bank.

PayPal siezed one Bitcoin processor's funds.  He was exchanging dollars for BitCoin using PayPal.

I think very soon, Bitcoin is going to banned in multiple countries, including the US.   It's just too much freedom for the statists in our government.

cliffyp:
There is a weekly podcast put out by a George Mason professor of economics called EconTalk.  It's a good podcast, it's meant for everyday people.  He just interviewed one of the guys from Bitcoin a few weeks ago.  If you're unsure about Bitcoin or want to know more about it then check out the interview.  It's about an hour long:

http://www.econtalk.org/archives/2011/04/andresen_on_bit.html

cliffyp:
Oh ya, I forgot putting in my opinion.  I didn't know too much about BitCoin before listening to that podcast, but my gut reaction was negative.  One of the problems with fiat paper is that it can just be printed and printed without limit.  I figured a virtual currency would be even worse, at least there is a cost to paper and the time of the printing press. 

After listening to the podcast I'm interested in BitCoin and I hope it continues to develop.  There is a built in mechanism to hold inflation to a slow steady predictable rate and because BitCoin is open source there is a check against the system being gamed.  I don't think there should be one "official" currency.  Let's have free exchange and let the currencies compete in the market place.  I agree with Backwoods, BitCoin is going to come under some pressure if it continues to grow.  Way to much freedom in the hands of the people and not in the banking elite. 

FreeLancer:
True, there are some big hurdles facing Bitcoin, but the idea of an open-source P2P crypto-currency is very intriguing.  With enough momentum behind it, it seems like it could be hard to stamp out and I'll be interested to see how things develop.

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