11 July 2023

Preston Pysh interviews author, Jason Maier, about the progressive’s case for adopting Bitcoin.

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  • What happened when Jason posted a Bitcoin poster on his wall at work?
  • Jason’s deep dive into Bitcoin Mining and the environmental impact.
  • Is Bitcoin an extension of Occupy Wall Street?
  • Bitcoin and Too Big to Fail Banks.
  • Can Bitcoin make war less prevalent?
  • How does Bitcoin impact developing nations around the world?
  • Why wealth inequality is a systemic issue created by the type of money we use.
  • Why bipartisanship is so important for Bitcoin growth in all nation states.


Disclaimer: The transcript that follows has been generated using artificial intelligence. We strive to be as accurate as possible, but minor errors and slightly off timestamps may be present due to platform differences.

[00:00:00] Preston Pysh: Hey everyone, welcome to this Wednesday’s release of the Bitcoin Fundamentals Podcast. So anyone that knows me personally knows that I despise politics and find that anyone that’s highly polarized in one camper the other often demonstrates what they don’t know more than what they do know.

[00:00:17] Preston Pysh: But more recently, there’s been a few elected officials on the progressive or liberal side of the political spectrum that have come out and said Bitcoin is bad for the environment, and a few other arguments that are just highly misinformed in my personal opinion. So instead of attacking any anyone politically, I have a guess that dispels these myths with sound reasoning and data and analysis.

[00:00:38] Preston Pysh: And here’s the best part, he comes from the progressive side of the aisle to make the case regardless of what your political affiliation is. The one thing I care about is highlighting deep critical thinking and facts behind how Bitcoin is actually good for the environment and from numerous different vantage points of why it’s good.

[00:00:56] Preston Pysh: So my guest today, Mr. Jason Maier, is the author of a book called A Progressive Case for Bitcoin, and he does an exemplary job explaining why some of these ill-informed talking points need much deeper analysis and consideration. So with that, I hope you guys enjoy this episode.

[00:01:16] Intro: You are listening to Bitcoin Fundamentals by The Investor’s Podcast Network. Now for your host, Preston Pysh.

[00:01:34] Preston Pysh: Hey everyone. Welcome to the show. I’m here with Jason Maier, and Jason, I’m excited to get into this. You have some really interesting perspectives and some amazing points that you’ve made in, in your book, which I’ve got right here, A Progressive’s Case for Bitcoin, for people that are interested in checking that out.

[00:01:52] Preston Pysh: But welcome to the show.

[00:01:53] Jason Maier: Yeah, thank you for having me. I’m super excited to talk to you about it.

[00:01:57] Preston Pysh: Jason, you start off the book and you’re talking about a poster that you hung in your office and you’re a teacher and you talk about how the poster was, I don’t know if provocative is the right word, but you were trying to generate a conversation and you got it pretty quickly with, with a lot of the folks that you were, you know, working alongside.

[00:02:18] Preston Pysh: Talk to us about that process. Talk to us about the process leading up to having the courage or the yeah, the intestinal fortitude to like pin that thing on the wall. What led to that moment?

[00:02:31] Jason Maier: So, as you said, I’m a high school math teacher. That’s been my dream since I was a little kid. So I’m, I’m currently, like, my fiat job is sort of my dream job from when I was little.

[00:02:41] Jason Maier: But like, as you might imagine, like being in the education business, a lot of my coworkers like me, they’re left leaning, left of center liberal, progressive. I had been into Bitcoin for a while. I sort of gotten into it through a mathematical lens and sort of understood a little bit of the computer science behind it.

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[00:02:57] Jason Maier: Was really excited about it. And there was this moment where I, like, I had a couple of people I knew in real life that were in Bitcoin, but not many. And I had found this poster online and I, I liked it. So I printed it off and I said, you know, I’ll put this up in my office at at work. And I talk about this in the book, I did not know really what to expect.

[00:03:15] Jason Maier: I kind of expected people to sort of like dismiss it or kind of claim that I was an idiot or falling for a Ponzi scheme. You know, that’s kind of what I expected. But what I got was the teacher who sits next to me in the office saw it almost immediately and just essentially gasped. Like her mouth had just dropped open and she was like, what are you doing?

[00:03:35] Jason Maier: Like, I don’t want my kids’ future like ruined for this fake money. You’re ruining the environment. Like this is just, you know, it’s like Bitcoin is obviously bad. Like I can’t believe somebody that I respected would be into it, like this whole like sort of monologue. And I honestly did not expect that.

[00:03:53] Jason Maier: Like I honestly was like, oh, there are people kind of give me a hard time about like being into Bitcoin, but certainly they’re not going to like attack fundamentally like the value proposition or something in that way. And so I didn’t know what to expect. Like I, I, I didn’t expect that I didn’t know how to respond.

[00:04:09] Jason Maier: And I think that I opened the book by saying like, I did not have a good response. Like, I sort of answered the questions and had the conversation, but I was not anticipating the animosity for, you know, for Bitcoin that, that I got. So that first conversation did, did not go as well as I wanted it to. And sort of since then I’ve, I’ve gotten on this, you know, kick that was sort of the kickoff to say, Hey, it’s fun to explain Bitcoin to people.

[00:04:33] Jason Maier: It’s fun to answer like, well-intentioned questions about it. It’s fun to sort of help people see the value in it. And that got me on this path that eventually led to the book that I wrote. And, you know, it’s been history since, right. It’s just been, that was like sort of one of the defining moments on the journey.

[00:04:50] Preston Pysh: You bring up the energy part. And I think that this for a lot of progressives or, and really anybody. That looks at Bitcoin and they, the, the first thing that, that they’ll say is just, well, it’s just consuming all of this energy. It’s going to consume the world’s energy by two years from now or whatever. And some, some of those dates that people were saying have already passed, and clearly it hasn’t.

[00:05:13] Preston Pysh: But in your third chapter of the book, you really do a deep dive on this one to cover it at in depth. Walk us through this chapter, kind of the, the architecture of it and then what some of the finer points that you were really kind of making in the book and just in general, like when you’re talking to somebody on this particular point of energy use.

[00:05:33] Jason Maier: Yeah, it’s it’s interesting, like the, like you said, it’s chapter three, which is in a sense like the real first chapter, right? There’s like sort of like, why the book and then why Bitcoin? And then like I dive into like the issues, like the energy issue is probably number one, as you said, for a lot of people who find themselves.

[00:05:51] Jason Maier: Knowing very little about Bitcoin, if they’ve only heard one thing, it’s probably that it’s like a waste of energy or uses too much energy, especially if they’re left leaning. I found it, it was important to get that conversation out front pretty early in the book, and it’s the longest chapter of the book, and it’s the most, you know, the, like the editors kept wanted to break it up.

[00:06:09] Jason Maier: I was like, no, I, I like it. It’s like it’s supposed to be the longest chapter. It’s the most important one, especially for the target audience, and I think it’s, you know, I break it up into a couple of different sort of themes through, you know, having the conversation about energy use and the environmental impact.

[00:06:26] Jason Maier: One is just trying to steer people away from this knee jerk reaction, which is like, energy use equals bad. That’s just as a starting place. Like that’s where a lot of progressive people might just think, right? That’s maybe layer one thinking about it. Like, oh, if you’re using energy, then you’re wasting it or you’re not, you know, you’re doing harm to the environment.

[00:06:46] Jason Maier: In order to really combat that, you have to get at it from the angle of what’s, what’s the energy being used for? Like, what’s the use case for this energy? Why is it important to use it? And therefore, like, if we have a reason to use the energy, then we can actually have a more meaningful debate about like, is it worth it?

[00:07:02] Jason Maier: Like is, is what you’re saying it’s providing actually worth that energy or not? And do you need to use it? That’s sort of the starting point, right? Like what’s the energy being used for? And then you can get into say, all right, well there’s no reason that we can’t be more efficient when we use the energy, or we can’t use more green energy or sustainable energy if we want to mine Bitcoin or do anything else, right?

[00:07:22] Jason Maier: Like this is an important part of it. Like there’s no path that I see to like increasing sustainable green energy without Bitcoin playing a major role, right? To sort of build out that infrastructure and to support the build out of, of sustainable green energy. So these are things that perfectly align with like progressive values, so things that people care about.

[00:07:43] Jason Maier: And they have never viewed it through this lens. They’ve absolutely only viewed it sort of through like the, you should feel guilty about using energy lens, which is very powerful as sort of a political message, but it’s not accurate. So you just have to find it, kind of get people to that point where they’re willing to consider the nuances of like, not all energy use is bad.

[00:08:03] Jason Maier: This energy use for Bitcoin is important because of all of the things that it provides us. And it also has opportunities to do the things that you want to do, right? Like if you’re a progressive person and you want it more like green electricity out there, like this is a method to actually achieve that goal.

[00:08:18] Jason Maier: That’s sort of like broad overview of, of the chapter. I go into a lot of specifics trying to explain things that. Most, you know, the book is targeted towards a lay audience, right? So they haven’t really thought about like, what, what does it mean to balance the energy, you know, grid? What does it mean to build out infrastructure?

[00:08:36] Jason Maier: What does it mean that like the energy produced has to equal the demand at all times? Like those are novel concepts to people. So I try to just explain that in the best way that I can to to that target audience.

[00:08:48] Preston Pysh: You know, one of the struggles that I have personally when I get in an engagement with somebody on this particular topic is I’ll say, well, you know, you might not find it valuable when you even mention this in your book, you say most people who criticize Bitcoin’s energy use are assuming it’s worthless from the start.

[00:09:04] Preston Pysh: Once you get past that and you convince them that maybe there is value here, the next pivot that they go to is, well, there’s other cryptocurrencies that don’t require as much energy, and so like, why aren’t we using those?

[00:09:17] Jason Maier: Right, right.

[00:09:18] Preston Pysh: Which then gets down a whole another rabbit hole of deep complexity of trying to explain to them why you have to tether, you know, this virtual coins to physical reality through energy use, which is really difficult to do.

[00:09:33] Preston Pysh: So, yeah.

[00:09:34] Jason Maier: Yeah, and that’s, I mean, I think that’s, that’s sort of a consistent theme, right? Whenever you’re talking to somebody who’s completely new to the Bitcoin sort of realm, like it takes hours and hours and hours to learn about Bitcoin, right? And so for a lot of people, I would imagine this book might be their first touch to actually think about it deeply.

[00:09:51] Jason Maier: But what you’re saying is right, like every conversation you have, like they’ll ask a question and then it puts you in this whole other direction, right? Like, oh, now I need to explain proof of stake versus proof of work and why like, this system isn’t sustainable and, and why it doesn’t actually help people and, and all of that.

[00:10:07] Jason Maier: It’s hard, right? You have to have bite-sized pieces and you have to sort of meet people where they are, and you can’t try to teach them all of it at once, right? These are sort of lessons that you learn as a, like, you know, I, I’ve been teaching for 20 years, teenagers trigonometry against their will, right?

[00:10:22] Jason Maier: So you learn these, these tricks like, all right, I can’t teach you all of Bitcoin at once. We need to break it up a little bit. So, yeah.

[00:10:29] Preston Pysh: Talk to us a little bit more about demand response systems for folks that heard you say that phrase. You have an example in your book where you talk about the July 9th, 2022 event where a thousand megawatts came back online during an event where they were running out of there.

[00:10:43] Preston Pysh: There was too much demand on the network because on the energy network, because of very hot conditions and this thousand megawatts that came online from Bitcoin miners actually helped cool 66,000 homes. So talk to people about like what’s happening here, how that’s even possible, why it’s different than other energy consumers.

[00:11:06] Jason Maier: Yeah, I mean, I think demand response is a, is a, is a critical component to sort of what makes Bitcoin valuable in, in sort of the electrical gi grid sphere, right? Because as I said before, every ounce of energy, every little bit of electricity you produce has to be consumed immediately, right? Like it, it’s transported to a consumer.

[00:11:26] Jason Maier: A light bulb turns on, a toaster, turns on, like that’s immediate. You can’t really store it. The, the battery technology isn’t like sufficient for that scale. And so what you end up having is, you know, in a, in a situation like you described where you have this heat wave and a lot of people are turning on their air conditioners and it might actually be a matter of life and death.

[00:11:43] Jason Maier: Like if you can get into air conditioning and, and be comfortable and, and be safe. That uses a lot of energy, like all at once, that possibly the people operating in the grid didn’t anticipate, or they don’t actually have enough potential to create that much electricity as it’s needed. And so the demand response is when that demand for electricity goes up, then Bitcoin miners can instantaneously and in a dynamic way power down and provide the energy that they were using back to the grid so that people who need it can use it.

[00:12:14] Jason Maier: It’s really like a, fundamentally like a dynamic system, right? Where Bitcoin miner can power up or power down like almost instantly, and it’s not unique to Bitcoin mining. There’s other industries that use a lot of electricity that provide demand response like aluminum, smelting, and iron, you know, all of these other examples, but there’s just not as good as Bitcoin, right?

[00:12:34] Jason Maier: Because Bitcoin can power down immediately in almost like instant response to a spike in demand. They can stay off as long as they need to, to sort of satisfy that demand and then power back up when they’re needed. So this is critical because, well, for lots of reasons, right? Like you have just general electricity and people need it.

[00:12:53] Jason Maier: Then Bitcoin miners like have been using it, but they can give it back. But in particular, like if you want to build out like green energy sources, those are usually wind and solar, those are intermittent, right? So you have peaks in producing electricity that don’t always match the peaks and the demand.

[00:13:09] Jason Maier: And so what can happen is the Bitcoin miners can come in, use that electricity that’s being produced by the Green source, monetize that energy, right? They’re paying for that electricity and then when that energy production levels offer goes down, they can power down as needed. And it’s super helpful because like I said, you can’t imagine a world in which solar and, and wind and all of that is being used like at scale without some sort of stabilizing force in preparation for the book.

[00:13:36] Jason Maier: It’s, this actually isn’t in the book, but I had an interesting conversation with somebody like the c e o of an energy company, like an actual, like person who like runs a company that provides energy to consumers. And also in that meeting was the person who ran sort of the, the bitcoin mining contracts for that company.

[00:13:56] Jason Maier: And it was an interesting exchange because the c e o was sort of like standoffish about Bitcoin. Like she didn’t like it. She was a little skeptical of it. And the person who runs those contracts was in the meeting too. And he was also sort of playing that game and say like, yeah, like we’re not like thrilled.

[00:14:12] Jason Maier: I don’t know. But I had a follow up meeting with just the guy who runs the contracts and he told me when the CEO wasn’t in the room, like, this is absolutely what we need. Like we need a large, like really roughly. Absolutely. And so like when he would buy himself with me, he was saying like, this is exactly what energy companies need.

[00:14:29] Jason Maier: They need a large, flexible demand that we need Absolutely. To be able to sell a lot of electricity to like Bitcoin miners who are willing to give it back when we need it. Like it helps us. It helps them. Like this is exactly what’s needed. He also brought up this issue, like right now there’s such a race for electricity companies to buy land that’s going to be good for renewables, whether it’s solar or wind.

[00:14:53] Jason Maier: And so there those electricity companies that are pro like producing electricity are buying up that land in that real estate right now without much demand to support it. because they know in the future they’re going to need sort of socially, they’re going to need to be able to provide like green electricity, but there’s not enough demand in the LO locations where they are.

[00:15:11] Jason Maier: And he was saying absolutely like, you know, location agnostic Bitcoin miners are going to be perfect for that like use case. We buy a bunch of land, we want to build out infrastructure for solar. There’s not enough demand yet. We’re going to put in Bitcoin miners for a couple of years until there is demand, like locally in terms of residential, commercial need for it.

[00:15:30] Jason Maier: And that sort of bitcoin mining provides the bridge for that company. And I said, all of the electricity companies are competing for the same real estate right now. And so they’re buying up this land and they don’t like, they need this tool to, to, to be able to use it and make, make use of it.

[00:15:46] Preston Pysh: One of the other sections you talk about in chapter three is this embedded incentives for efficiency.

[00:15:51] Preston Pysh: Explain what you’re getting at with this.

[00:15:54] Jason Maier: Yeah. I think the example I use is like, you know, we all have a refrigerator in our house and how many of us have like the most up-to-date efficient refrigerator, you know, like that uses like energy the most efficiently, like not many, right? Like if you bought your refrigerator more than six months ago, there’s a better version out there that does the same job but is more efficient.

[00:16:14] Jason Maier: And I think it’s just a description because a lot of people who are new to Bitcoin might not understand that. Like the technology of Bitcoin miners, like the actual computers that are doing this work is improving constantly. And so I go through a little bit of the history to say like, when, you know, we first started using graphics cards or we first started using an ASIC compared to now, like just the efficiency, not like how much, what’s the hash rate, but like what’s the hash rate per kilowatt?

[00:16:41] Jason Maier: You know, it’s, it’s actually improved tremendously like, you know, orders of magnitude. And so just sort of speaking to this idea that like we shouldn’t demonize the electricity use. But we should be open to saying like, Hey, can I do this same job more efficiently? Can I use less electricity to do the same job, for example?

[00:16:59] Jason Maier: And if people are willing to say, oh, I should be able to do that with my car or my TV or my refrigerator, that’s already happening with Bitcoin miners. And it’s not a matter of like some government regulation to say, your car needs to be this efficient and so does your Bitcoin miner. It’s actually built in, the incentives are built in because Bitcoin mining’s a really low margin proposition, right?

[00:17:22] Jason Maier: So like it doesn’t help you to have not the most efficient machine. I think that that section is important just to help under people understand like this is going to trend more efficient over time. And also paired with this idea that it’s like a non-rival use of energy, right? So like if energy prices go up because demand is up, then we’re powering down.

[00:17:41] Jason Maier: So exactly what we’re talking about before. So in conjunction, those are pretty powerful arguments I think for people who are just starting to grapple with this idea of like, wow. I thought that energy use was bad because that’s what the politicians were telling me and I always felt guilty about it, and now I’m thinking about it in a more nuanced way.

[00:17:58] Jason Maier: I think it’s just all part of the same conversation.

[00:18:02] Preston Pysh: I think this one is so lost on most people. Even people that have been in Bitcoin for a while, I think they just really don’t understand how there’s a natural incentive structure to become more efficient. And you’re dealing with Moore’s law that you give it four years.

[00:18:19] Preston Pysh: Like there is a tremendous change in mining rigs that were out four years ago as far as their efficiency to plow through the, the computations where the guesses and the energy that they’re consuming to supply the number of guesses that they’re providing relative to four years earlier or any period earlier.

[00:18:36] Preston Pysh: Yeah.

[00:18:37] Jason Maier: And I think what most people understand is that the, the hash, the hash rate’s going up, right? Like anybody who’s ever bought a mine knows like, oh, six months, like, oh my, I could have had 140 tera hash per second. That’s not the issue. Right? The issue is like, what’s the, like what is the hash rate per JUUL of energy use?

[00:18:54] Jason Maier: Yes, that’s improving tremendously. Like, I forget what the numbers are, but they’re in the book like like 50 fold, 50 million fold, like, you know, improvement over the energy efficiency to do the same number of hashes. I think it’s critically important to just sort of highlight that for people who haven’t really thought about it a lot.

[00:19:12] Preston Pysh: Another topic that you talk about that I really like this idea is the idea of consumerism. Talk to us about this.

[00:19:20] Jason Maier: Yeah, I mean that’s, that’s sort of the, there’s a big overlap in the target audience of people. Like who, oh, I’m a liberal, progressive leftist center person. And also I’m really disgusted by the amount of consumerism that’s going on in the world and people are just buying cheap stuff all, and people have a problem with that, right?

[00:19:39] Jason Maier: For lots of good reasons. I don’t think a lot of people on the left who have really thought through sort of how fiat money in an inflationary monetary environment contributes to that consumerism. It’s not just that people are greedy or impatient or always want more, it’s like your money is melting away, right?

[00:19:57] Jason Maier: Like you’re actually like incentivize to keep buying more and keep buying different things and companies are incentivized to sell you something that’s going to break in a couple of years, so you have to buy a new one. And so all of these things like really great against most people that sit down to think about them for a little bit because it doesn’t feel right, like, it feels like one of the things that’s broken in the world.

[00:20:17] Jason Maier: But not a lot of people are thinking about it through sort of like, what’s the financial system that incentivizes this behavior? What’s incentivizing companies to do this? What’s in incentivizing consumers to do this? And so, you know, for a lot of people this might be the first sort of like touchpoint to say like, oh, well, like I was always taught in economics class that we need inflation.

[00:20:38] Jason Maier: But like, look at some of the like second order effects of that, right? It’s people are just buying a bunch of plastic stuff, PE things are breaking all the time. This is doing untold damage to the environment, right? I put it in the environment chapter because that’s exactly what it is, right? Like we’re just consuming things.

[00:20:55] Jason Maier: And we’re incentivized to do so. Now, that’s not the whole picture, but it’s a pretty important part of it. So I think that that’s, for me personally, like once I got into Bitcoin, I changed completely my consuming patterns, right? Like I’m, I’m thinking about every purchase differently. I’m thinking about like, does this need to happen?

[00:21:11] Jason Maier: Do I need to replace this? Is this version that I have good enough? Like all of those things that I don’t think I was thinking about in the, with the same intentionality before I got into Bitcoin. And I’m hoping for other people to have that same sort of epiphany.

[00:21:25] Preston Pysh: When I look at consumerism and I’m saying, why?

[00:21:28] Preston Pysh: Why have people been cognitively conditioned to spend as soon as it gets into their wallet? And I think that Saylor does such a great job talking about like inflation is a vector. It really kind of depends where it nests itself. But if we were going to really zoom out like way out and just say, well, how much, how many monetary units are being added in into the system regardless of where they kind of nest themselves, whether it goes into this really finite thing and the price explodes a hundred percent up in three years, or it’s not going into this one area where there’s only like 1% inflation.

[00:22:04] Preston Pysh: But if we zoom out and literally just look at the monetary units from like an M2 standpoint and we would do a compound annual growth rate over a long period of time, call it 20 years, that number’s between like seven to 8% when we look at, just because a person doesn’t know that that’s really kind of the inflation rate.

[00:22:23] Preston Pysh: Doesn’t mean that they don’t intuitively experience it and feel it. In the way that they’re making everyday decisions in the, in the free, in the quote, unquote free and open market.

[00:22:35] Preston Pysh: So and so I guess all, I guess all I’m saying is when I, well, I guess when I personally think of consumerism, it’s like people are losing their buying power to the tune of seven or 8% annually.

[00:22:46] Preston Pysh: And when you compound it, it’s really aggressive. And so they almost feel like they’ve got to go out and spend the money as soon as it hits their their pocket, because if they don’t, they know it’s just going to be worth less the day after. It’s just crazy to see it kind of unfold and it seems to almost be accelerating now versus like when we were younger.

[00:23:05] Preston Pysh: I don’t know, but.

[00:23:07] Jason Maier: Well, I, I think you’re right because I think what you said was that the person feels like they have to spend it because this is not like, you know, the average consumer is not running the equations and saying like, oh, I better go buy the new thing. Right? Yeah. This is just something that you feel in the ether right? And I think it’s great because the, the opposite is also true, right? Like, people don’t need to understand every nuance about Bitcoin to understand that it’s better money, right? They’ll just feel that it preserves their purchasing power over time better, and it, it allows them to interact with people as adoption grows.

[00:23:41] Jason Maier: It allows that to happen more efficiently. So people like, just the same way, people don’t need to understand like the mathematical equations behind inflation to, for that to influence their behavior. The same is true on the other end, right? People don’t need to understand every single thing about Bitcoin to just understand that it’s better money.

[00:23:58] Jason Maier: And I think that’s like really a boon to my, like, you know, my outlook on the world, which is like Bitcoin adoption will grow because people will sort of feel and understand that it’s better money even if they haven’t sort of sat down and like read all the books or understand all of the, the background information.

[00:24:14] Jason Maier: And that’s the hope, right? The, the same thing that’s driving them to say, oh, I need to buy the, the new tv, or I need to like get a new car right now instead of thinking about that differently. The opposite will happen too as people start adopting Bitcoin. That’s, I’m excited about that.

[00:24:30] Preston Pysh: Something I’ve thought about for many years at this point with respect to bitcoin.

[00:24:35] Preston Pysh: That you actually bring this up in your book, and I kind of smiled when I saw you bring this up because I’ve been saying for a few years that the Occupy Wall Street movement that happened after the 2008 crisis, everybody in New York City, crowded into the park, they set up their tents and the, everybody was singing their folk songs and like really upset with what had played out with how the banks were rescued in the 2008, 2009 crisis.

[00:25:03] Preston Pysh: There was just no meat behind, there was no action behind the protest. And I’ve been telling people, I think Bitcoin is an extension of the, the core of like what the Occupy Wall Street movement was all about. But there’s actually an engineered solution in action that is now being supplied into that cultural movement.

[00:25:29] Preston Pysh: And I, and I don’t know if philosophy is the right word or just. Really just a cultural movement. Right. You start off one of your chapters with this Occupy Wall Street. I’m just kind of curious if, if a, you agree with that and B, just kind of, is it even more profound than that? Or is, or does that really kind of encapsulate how you, how you view this?

[00:25:52] Jason Maier: No, I, I think that you’re dead on, right? Like there’s no way for me to not think of Occupy Wall Street and Bitcoin as just mission aligned, right? They’re doing. They’re trying to do the same thing except, you know, one is more effective. I I, and I think that it’s particularly for my audience, right? Like my audience is skeptical of big banks, right?

[00:26:11] Jason Maier: And they’re may be a little bit less skeptical about their relationship between big banks and government, but they don’t like that either. And so, like, this is not, like, this is not rocket science. Like if you are like down with Occupy Wall Street, you think the system is rigged and unfair. You think the rich people are getting favorable treatment.

[00:26:28] Jason Maier: And you’re okay sitting in a tent in, in Wall Street and occupying Wall Street, then you’re really going to like Bitcoin. And I think like that, what you just described is absolutely right. Like those two things are mission aligned. And what I describe in the book is actually a little bit like more detail, which say like Bitcoin is a, a flat open like protocol where all the people are peers and you’re interacting on a voluntary basis.

[00:26:51] Jason Maier: There’s a lot of aspects about Occupy Wall Street that were the same, right? It was sort of a leaderless thing. There wasn’t somebody in charge of it, there was no centralized entity. It was just sort of people getting together on a peer-to-peer basis, like protesting. And so I draw an analog between that and, and the Bitcoin network in a, in a way to illustrate it.

[00:27:10] Jason Maier: But you know, what’s fascinating is that, you know, we all saw Occupy Wall Street happen and we probably saw that before we heard about Bitcoin for most people. And as the book went out, I got more than one person reach out to me and say that they were like, I wasn’t at the Occupy Wall Street. Protest, but there’s plenty of people who reached out to me and say they were, and when they read the book and they read that chapter that you’re talking about, you know, there’s one person who wrote to me and said, like, just the way you described it brought me to tears because it brought me back to that moment.

[00:27:40] Jason Maier: And not only is it sort of mission aligned, as I said, but like Bitcoin provides an actual, like efficient, like effective tool to do some of the things that Occupy Wall Street was trying to do. That’s super good feedback, right? If somebody’s actually there and like the description and the analog speaks to them, that’s, that’s high praise.

[00:28:02] Preston Pysh: One of my personal pet peeves, like, you know, if my wife was in here, she’d really get a kick out of me admitting this, that like I have a pet peeve when people, I guess I have a saying, there’s a ton of problem identifiers and very few problem solvers like that are actually solving the problem and saying, here’s the solution that will do it.

[00:28:23] Preston Pysh: Most people just want to go, and I saw the, the Occupy Wall Street as being much more of a problem identification movement of like, Hey, this, there’s something wrong here. I don’t have a solution to solve it, but I’m really angry about it. Right? And I just want the whole world to know how upset I am. Right?

[00:28:41] Preston Pysh: And I think there’s so many people in the world like that, and there’s so few that say, I agree there is a problem, and here’s an engineered turnkey solution that actually is better, is truly better than that system over there. And that’s where I think Bitcoin is, is that, that latter part.

[00:29:02] Jason Maier: I think there’s, there’s some value in sort of the, the expression that I’m angry about this problem that I see in the world.

[00:29:08] Jason Maier: Right? If you, if you feel like maybe not everybody sees that problem, like I get that, but I think what you’re saying is right then what are the solutions? Like what are the effective solutions? And you know, in my mind, you know, I’m biased, but the, I don’t think that there’s a, a person who really believes in sort of the fundamental issues behind Occupy Wall Street that shouldn’t be supporting Bitcoin because it’s, like I said, it’s.

[00:29:31] Jason Maier: The effective way to accomplish some of the same things that you’re trying to accomplish. And, and Bitcoin, one of the themes throughout the book is Bitcoin provides a new lens on the problems because there’s plenty of people left the center, progressive people look at the world, they see lots of problems, they see things going wrong.

[00:29:48] Jason Maier: You know, that’s true for everybody, right? But like, that’s certainly true for people on the left. But it like Bitcoin provides a new lens to look at those problems and a new lens to look at the solutions, right? Bitcoin provides solutions that a lot of people on the left side of the political spectrum haven’t really thought deeply about.

[00:30:03] Jason Maier: And that’s why I’m excited to share it with people.

[00:30:05] Preston Pysh: And just to, to be fair, like you can’t engineer a solution without first complaining and having a reason for having a problem. Right?

[00:30:13] Jason Maier: Right, right. Yeah.

[00:30:15] Preston Pysh: There’s a pretty substantial amount of discussion in your book about too big to fail banks for somebody who doesn’t even realize that term or they’ve heard the term, but they really just don’t understand the implications. Lay this out for them.

[00:30:31] Jason Maier: There’s a lot of angst and, and sort of umbrage taken, especially on the left, but probably with a lot of people about this idea that the banks were bailed out in the 2008 financial crisis. Nobody really heard of. Too big to fail at that point. But it’s really just a matter of the counterparty risk and sort of like when one bank fails, then a bunch of others are going to fail.

[00:30:51] Jason Maier: We saw it starting to happen. The government stepped in as a backstop back in that during that financial crisis. And you know, like just from a political standpoint, like people were upset by this, right? Like they’re bailing out these banks to make sure that The banks are solvent, but these people are losing their homes.

[00:31:09] Jason Maier: Obviously, it’s a little bit more complicated, right? Like if the banks fail, then the whole economy crashes and you end up with like a much worse situation. And the, the whole idea is like, well, how do we get to that point? Like how do we get to the point where the banks were, had that much power, that much interconnectedness, that much sort of counterparty risk so that if one of them goes down, then it causes trouble for everybody in the world.

[00:31:31] Jason Maier: Like, that’s not, doesn’t seem like a good system. So really what I try to do in the book is just outline for a novice who hasn’t thought about it a lot. Like Bitcoin provides an option for like, becoming your own bank. And like you like the things that you have like in your bank account right now, like a savings account and a checking account and a credit card like Bitcoin replaces all of those things in, in different ways.

[00:31:53] Jason Maier: We can not only reduce our reliance on these huge institutions that sort of control way more than they probably should, but we can also sort of change the dynamic between the banks and the government in a way, by taking the power away. Taking that monetary energy away from those institutions and putting them in the hands of people is all sort of a step in the right direction.

[00:32:14] Jason Maier: So I think that, you know, the intention behind that is to, again, like there’s a target audience from my book out there that thinks like, you know, is very skeptical of big banks and doesn’t think that they’re serving people that need to be served or that they’re favoring wealthy clients or connected individuals.

[00:32:31] Jason Maier: And all of that is true, and I’m just offering them to look at it through like the lens of Bitcoin instead of the, you know, the lens of maybe some of the other left wing politicians that they’re listening to normally.

[00:32:43] Preston Pysh: You know, I’m glad you presented that the way you did, because if we had a time machine and we went back to 2008 and were served the exact same environmental conditions that they were dealing with back then, you would’ve had to have made the exact same decisions or you would literally have freezed up all exchange between all market participants if they didn’t act the way that they did.

[00:33:06] Jason Maier: You know, it’s funny, I mean, cause as, as we know, like a lot of people give Jerome Powell a lot of like a hard time about the decisions that he’s making. You know, like, I don’t know, you know, if people have said this like, I don’t know what decision you do make, right? Like, question is like, what’s the system in place that’s creating this problem?

[00:33:22] Jason Maier: And you know, in that moment, in 2008, we had to solve the symptoms, right? Like we had to take care of what we saw on the surface and we weren’t able to say, Hey, what’s the underlying systemic issues happening here that’s allowing this problem to be created in the first place? So maybe, you know, like, you know, my view is like gradually over time Bitcoin adoption goes up, understanding of bitcoin goes up, understanding of the legacy financial system goes up and we gradually transition to a new system that is built with more intention and sort of has an eye out for these problems.

[00:33:55] Jason Maier: But you can’t, well, you could or you could advocate for it. Like, I’m not advocating for like a snap of the fingers overhaul of the whole system. It’s not going to be good for people. And just like you said, like in that moment, in 2008, you’re not solving the underlying issue. Like there’s no way you could, you need to just solve the problem that’s presented in front of you, just the way Jerome Powell’s making decisions right now.

[00:34:15] Jason Maier: And he’s like, yeah, there’s no good decisions. So, you know, there’s, there’s nothing General Powell’s going to say that a Bitcoin is not going to like criticize him for fix the problems that he has in front of him. And it’s a systems problem. It’s not a symptom thing.

[00:34:31] Preston Pysh: Yeah, and it’s so exciting to know that this Bitcoin system, this network has been engineered over the last decade since that moment where there wasn’t an option to move to another way of conducting exchange.

[00:34:46] Preston Pysh: But in the meantime, there’s been a whole lot of work and a whole lot of brilliant people that have dedicated their lives to engineering the solution, to actually have a place to pivot to as they continue to go down this destructive path. Yes, that’s required for fractional reserve banking and too big to fail banks.

[00:35:03] Preston Pysh: So, yeah. Fascinating. In the eighth chapter, I have to just tell you as a, as a former military person, there’s nothing more important to me personally than the points that you raise in this chapter about Bitcoin potentially offering less war, less deadly conflicts between nation states. And I really enjoyed the way that you kind of lay out how here in particular the United States has, has really pivoted, pivoted away in Congress as far as like them actually declaring war and going through the act of like, well how are we going to fund this war?

[00:35:45] Preston Pysh: And it’s just moved and gravitated away from like, well, we’re just not even going to have that conversation anymore. We’re just going to go do kinetic force anywhere we want and nobody’s even going to vote on it. Walk the dog for the listener. Take them on the layout of this because it was so well done in, in your book.

[00:36:03] Jason Maier: Again, like this is an issue that’s near and dear to a lot of people’s hearts, right?

[00:36:07] Jason Maier: Like they really care a lot about it. And I think that, you know, one of the points that I try to make in that chapter is, like you said, the gradual shift away from sort of an armed conflict being tethered to a voting populace that’s engaged in like civic discourse. So, you know, I provide this example, you know, of, of World War II, where not only do you have Congress voting to declare war, which is like the representatives of the people actually saying, this is a war we need to fight in.

[00:36:37] Jason Maier: We will fight it. But you also have the populous engaged in tax increases and rationing and buying war bonds and all of the things that you could do and, and actually fighting in the war, right? You have draft and people are like, you know, actually being drafted to fight in the war, volunteering to fight in the war, et cetera.

[00:36:56] Jason Maier: And, you know, it seems very quaint when you think, okay, this is what happened in World War ii and we’ve all seen the movies and we’ve read the books and we kind of know what that, you know, must have felt like, or we kind of can imagine it. And it’s literally the opposite end of the spectrum from what’s happening now, right?

[00:37:12] Jason Maier: Like, there, there are no votes in Congress to actually declare war. The, the World War II was the last war that was declared by the United States Congress. There’s no conversations about how we pay for the war. There’s no conversations about, you know, like, is this something that the populist wants? And the only way, and this is one of the points that I make in the book, that you can have a 20 year war that is unpopular, is because they’re printing the money to pay for it right there.

[00:37:39] Jason Maier: There is no way that, you know, in a liberal western democracy, You can fight a war for 20 years that nobody wants to be fighting. Or is it very unpopular without paying for it? With printed, you know, made up money. And so the premise here is that, you know, by adopting a Bitcoin standard or some version where like a dollar is backed by a Bitcoin or something like that, there’s no way for you to actually fight a war that like the, without engaging with the populace in a way that’s meaningful.

[00:38:09] Jason Maier: Like have a discussion. How are we going to pay for it? We can’t just print the money so we have to borrow it and pay it back, or we have to tax you for it, or we have to make sacrifices somewhere else. Like, it’s not saying that war can’t happen and it’s not saying that a country couldn’t defend itself if it needed to.

[00:38:23] Jason Maier: It’s just saying like, it needs to be really important and like, really, like the populace has to be behind it. And I think that’s moving us in that direction has to be good. Having more buy-in from people about whether or not you fight a war. How long is it? How are you paying for all of that stuff in a democracy should be stuff.

[00:38:41] Jason Maier: The voting population has a say in. And we just haven’t. So, you know, Afghanistan and Iraq are examples where, you know, the people weren’t forced to make sacrifices back home for either one of those conflicts. Nobody’s standard of living went down. Nobody had a rash in their, but nobody’s taxes went up. In fact, taxes went down.

[00:38:59] Jason Maier: So the war just seemed detached. It happened someplace else. My representative didn’t vote for it. My taxes aren’t going up to pay for it. That doesn’t seem like a healthy system. So Bitcoin offers at least an opportunity to rethink that and potentially improve it. So that’s, that’s the premise at least some of the premises behind the, the chapter.

[00:39:19] Preston Pysh: When we look at developing nations around the world, you have a chapter dedicated to this chapter five.

[00:39:25] Preston Pysh: Where you’re talking about the disenfranchised communities and how they’ve been victims of the dollar dominant fiat currency system. What can you tell the listener that Bitcoin offers these communities that isn’t, I guess, obvious just on the face value that you now have this decentralized money that’s not being totally destroyed, because you have, I mean, I think a lot of people are familiar with the idea that some of these currencies are getting the base by 50 to even a hundred percent a year. So beyond that, how else would you say that Bitcoin benefits a lot of these communities?

[00:40:02] Jason Maier: That chapter, by the way, was the hardest chapter to write.

[00:40:05] Jason Maier: Like I was just in a depressed state for two weeks while I was working deep in that chapter. Because you’re not just talking about like, okay, you have the dollar and then these other currencies aren’t as good and they’re in, you know, like they have really bad inflation or something. What you’re talking about is a system where the United States is in a position of privilege because they have the world reserve currency and they can manipulate, lean on, in other words, take advantage of other nations usually that are poor for the benefit of the United States, the benefit of maintaining dollar hegemony.

[00:40:38] Jason Maier: So it’s not just like, oh, we’re going to fight a war, or we’re going to like assassinate a person, you know, elected government official to make more money. It’s actually to de, to preserve the definition of money, right? Like what the dollar is, the global dominant reserve currency. You need it for all trade that happens all over the world, and we’re going to preserve that status.

[00:40:58] Jason Maier: What it provides is an opportunity for people to be using money that’s not controlled by any one government. It levels a playing field, so it’s not just sort of like, oh, my money is being debate, so I’m going to use Bitcoin. But if everybody’s using Bitcoin, then it levels the playing field and it doesn’t give one nation sort of the ability to print for free the world reserve currency when every other nation has to work, provide services, provide some sort of good to gain those dollars.

[00:41:26] Jason Maier: Like it just sort of makes everything fair. Like if you’re, no matter what country you’re from, no matter where you’re born, you get to use Bitcoin and everybody else does too. It’s a lot of privilege to be born as an American and say, oh, I get to use a dollar. Right? Like, it, it seems weird to say like, where you’re born dictates what kind of money you can use, and most forms of money are really bad.

[00:41:47] Jason Maier: Like the dollar’s bad, but like it’s the best dirty, you know, it’s cleanest dirty shirt. And so Bitcoin offers a different lens through that, right? Like no matter where you’re born, you get to use this. And a nation, no matter how economically or militarily powerful they are, like the United States can’t change the Bitcoin protocol and everybody’s operating on a, on a equal footing that provides a lot of promise.

[00:42:08] Jason Maier: Like it’s hard to imagine what the world would look like after 20 years of that. I can’t even try to imagine what it looks like, but I would imagine that’s something that’s an ambition we’re striving for.

[00:42:18] Preston Pysh: One of the challenges that I think we have on both political spectrums, whether you’re talking conservative or progressive, is this idea that on the hill they’ve grown accustomed to being net consumers and doing it through the debasement of the currency.

[00:42:36] Preston Pysh: On the conservative side, I would say that where it’s difficult is through the, just the defense industrial complex with the acquisition process. Of military acquisition of these really expensive multi-billion dollar programs, and the incentive for elected officials to vote the money and the work into their district.

[00:42:59] Preston Pysh: On the progressive side, I would say it’s the social programs that they’ve become addicted to, consuming way more than what they actually bring in, in order to get votes of, Hey, well, we’ll, we’ll give you this program, we’ll give you that program. So both sides of the aisle, like has this addiction to being a net consumer.

[00:43:19] Jason Maier: Right.

[00:43:19] Preston Pysh: And bitcoin’s, you know, as we’re talking to politicians about Bitcoin and we’re saying, Hey, this is better form of money, deep down inside both sides of the of the aisle have to be saying, Yeah, but, but I can’t get elected if I’m not like vote. Basically stepping in front of the flow of money and getting this money to flow into these districts that, that I’m being elected into through these programs or through like this defense industrial complex.

[00:43:47] Preston Pysh: How do you broach that subject? Because it doesn’t seem like that’s something people are willing to openly discuss or even admit is the case, but like it’s very obvious that that’s the incentive structure.

[00:44:02] Jason Maier: Yeah. And you know, I talk about this in the book where, you know, the politically feasible thing to do is just sort of inflate the money.

[00:44:08] Jason Maier: So you don’t need to raise taxes and you can just sort of go into debt. And obviously if you get to print the money that you’re using, then that’s, that’s an advantage point of view to, to have. So what’s interesting about what you said too is like in sort of standard political culture out in the, in America, like people think, oh, Democrats tax and spend and Republicans are fiscally conserved.

[00:44:30] Jason Maier: This is not by true by any stretch, you know? And I think like, oh, when Democrats do it, it’s called tax and spend. And when republicans do it, it’s called something else. But really nobody’s taxing. They’re just spending, right? They’re just. Like they’re staying down. Nobody’s raising taxes. It’s just their spending.

[00:44:45] Jason Maier: So I think it’s important because this is, gets to the fundamental issue about like a person’s relationship with their government and their government’s ability to print money to do certain things or not. And I think that the. The stance that I’m taking is essentially that an adoption of Bitcoin and it, it won’t come from the politicians, it has to come from the people from the ground up because as you, there’s no incentive from politicians to change their mind about this, but they might be forced to, right?

[00:45:11] Jason Maier: Like if enough people get behind it, and we are self custodying and we’re imposing like our views, not imposing our views, but explaining our views about how this is better, like it will catch on. But the net benefit of that is to make government, it might make government smaller. That’s fine. There’s plenty of areas in which a government can be smaller, but it will more importantly make it more efficient and transparent.

[00:45:33] Jason Maier: So it, it doesn’t, in my view, like Bitcoin doesn’t end, you know, spell the end of like taxation or the government. It just means that the government will have to communicate more clearly about this is why we’re taxing you, this is why what we’re spending the money on. Be able to prove that they’re spending the money on that.

[00:45:48] Jason Maier: And then be able to prove, you know, be transparent about these are the goods and services that we usually used to provide and we’re no longer doing that. And I think that there’s things on both sides of the political spectrum that people aren’t willing to get rid of. But that’s why we are in a democracy.

[00:46:02] Jason Maier: So we get to decide like what gets cut, like how high are taxes going to go before we elect you out? What are you spending the taxes on? Does that align with my priorities or not? And I think that there’s a lot of room to sort of reimagine, like the relationship that a person has with the government or with taxation or with spending at the government level without saying that, okay, well Bitcoin exists, therefore the government is going to, is like cease to exist.

[00:46:27] Jason Maier: I think that there’s a lot of sort of options between those two ex, you know, two options.

[00:46:32] Preston Pysh: I’ve got a pretty pessimistic point of view on how this is going to resolve itself in just that like the tax is going to be paid, it’s just how it’s manifested itself. Right. And the tax is being paid through the basement at this point because we’ve maxed out the debt load.

[00:46:49] Preston Pysh: And you’re starting to see just the interest expense alone that’s starting to creep up to the revenues that are generated through taxes. We’re getting there very closely. So I just think that the general populace, when we would take a hundred people. They’re saying, I know it doesn’t intuitively feel right, that I should just get a check, a UBI checker, whatever you want to call it.

[00:47:11] Preston Pysh: I know that there’s, there’s something that doesn’t add up about that, but I really don’t care. Just give me the check. Right, and just give me the check because like I have no disposable income, which is a function of. You have a quote in your book that I think is let’s see here. You say in your book that the wealth inequality we see in, in our society is a systemic issue created by the type of money we use, which I completely agree with.

[00:47:38] Preston Pysh: And I think that the only thing that’s going to actually ca that’s going to force people to come to the realization that, that they shouldn’t want the check is just sheer pain. It’s just, I don’t think that we can rationalize through academic arguments and explain to them, well, actually what this turns into is a flat tax across everybody in the population, regardless of what your income is.

[00:48:04] Preston Pysh: Right? So if you make 10,000 a year or you make a million a year, that tax rate is exactly the same for both of those two people by choosing to basement.

[00:48:13] Jason Maier: No, I, I think it’s great. It’s an opportunity to educate people too, right? Because as you’re sort of implying any inflation rate hurts, poor people or people who are struggling to make ends meet are going to feel that much more than somebody who’s more well off.

[00:48:27] Jason Maier: And that just compounds over time, right? Yeah. Yeah. The inflation rate, we say like a lot of you, it’s all about derivatives, right? Like the inflation rate might be going back down, but it’s still higher, right? The prices don’t go back down. The prices still stay high. They’re just increasing at a slower rate.

[00:48:42] Jason Maier: That’s all that means. And so that’s hurting poor people, working people, like people who are struggling to make ends meet. And I think that there is an opportunity to educate people about like, right, when we decide not to tax people and we’re just going to pay for it through inflation. Like who are the winners and who are the losers?

[00:48:59] Jason Maier: Who are the losers and who are the bigger losers? And then have like a dialogue about that. And maybe you’re right, maybe we don’t get to educate everybody in time, or that we don’t get that sort of tipping point into Bitcoin as sort of a savings technology. And we have to rely on the pain. I’m hoping that doesn’t happen.

[00:49:15] Jason Maier: I don’t want that to happen, but it might.

[00:49:17] Preston Pysh: Jason, as I’m thinking through this as we’re talking, it’s just, if I have to try to defend the person that’s saying, just give me the check. I don’t, I don’t want, Hey, nerd, shut up. Right?

[00:49:28] Preston Pysh: As, as a person would be saying all this and making the intellectual argument be like, Hey, nerd, shut up.

[00:49:33] Preston Pysh: Just gimme the check. That person. If you have a choice between the federal government doing more QE, or handing out a UBI check, right? Like they’re going to take the UBI check because it actually benefits them more as opposed to the QE. That’s just bidding equity prices to oblivion. Yeah. And benefiting that person who’s saying, give me the check, doesn’t have ownership of equity.

[00:49:56] Preston Pysh: They’re just working paycheck to paycheck. So it’s actually beneficial for them to make that argument to say, just gimme the check because the UBI thing, like they’ve been doing that for a decade and it hasn’t helped me out at all.

[00:50:07] Jason Maier: Yeah, in the short term, they’re absolutely right. Right. Like the sort of the, it goes to the Cantillon effect, right?

[00:50:13] Jason Maier: Yeah. You’re not the people. If you do it the other way, then certainly the people who don’t need any help are getting the help. And certainly there’s something to be said about like, alright, during the pandemic we’re going to send out checks. Like, why don’t we be a little bit more discriminatory about like, who’s getting these checks?

[00:50:28] Jason Maier: Like instead of sending ’em to everybody, because you know, like you said, that person who says just gimme the check, like they’re a human being who needs to feed kids and needs to keep the lights on, and they don’t see a way out of that, right? Like, this is healthy, they need. And it’s hard to tell somebody who doesn’t have food on the table.

[00:50:46] Jason Maier: Like you need to be thinking two or three steps ahead. Bitcoin is a better option. You know, like forget just, you know, like bow out of the system because it’s, it’s rigged against you. Like people can’t do that. Right? So we just need to keep educating and then hopefully like I said, the, the transition is gradual.

[00:51:02] Jason Maier: I do, I do think like an abrupt transition to Bitcoin seems devastating to a lot of people on the planet. But a gradual one seems like we end up in a better spot for everybody. So keep on educating and then, you know, if people really need it, it then you can help ’em. But you have to be really thoughtful about how you do that.

[00:51:19] Jason Maier: You can’t just send a check to everybody in the, in the country and not expect prices to go up 12 months later. It doesn’t make any sense.

[00:51:27] Preston Pysh: It’s interesting because I was on a piano one time where we were talking about UBI and Jack Dorsey was like, well, you know, I think we’re run running outta options.

[00:51:35] Preston Pysh: And my point was, if you’re truly talking about a system that is dying, Like it’s unrecoverable. You have to balance a QE UBI liquidity flow into the population. As you’re transitioning to a new system that can be stood up that’s fair and balanced and equitable and yeah, you can’t be manipulated.

[00:51:57] Preston Pysh: Right. Right. If you think the the existing legacy system can be salvaged, you have to stop doing both of those things immediately. Right. And I guess in a fractional reserve system, I just don’t even know that that’s possible. I think that history has taught us a nauseum that a fractional reserve system always fails and with, with enough time.

[00:52:19] Preston Pysh: It’s just a matter of like how long, whether it’s 40 years or 50 years or 20 years or whatever it is. It’s not that I am personally promoting and I don’t think you are either, Jason, that I’m promoting UBI or I’m promoting QE. I’m saying if we’re going to bridge to a new system, there has to be liquidity in that system.

[00:52:37] Preston Pysh: You just can’t put your hands up in the air and let something that’s completely based on debt and completely impair itself down to zero. because literally it’s going to be apocalyptic in society if that’s what we choose. Right?

[00:52:50] Jason Maier: Right. Yeah. I mean you, you can see pretty quickly like when, when people work really hard and they still can’t feed their family, like how quickly society deteriorates.

[00:52:58] Jason Maier: Yeah. Like civilization goes out the window pretty quickly. So I think that you’re right. And, and it, it reminds me of this other point, which is, is I think is important, which is like there’s a lot of people who are incentivized to keep us fighting, like left right issues like blue and red. Like, Hey, this shouldn’t, this UBI shouldn’t have happened.

[00:53:17] Jason Maier: This sort of welfare state shouldn’t have happened, whatever. But the truth is like politics, some people are coming up with solutions because the world is broken in a fiat system. And if they don’t understand Bitcoin or they’re not really sh fully clued into how the system works, they just know it’s broken.

[00:53:33] Jason Maier: They’re coming up with, in some cases good faith, like solution attempts, right? Like we can’t just let people starve to death. Like, we need to do something. And, and kind of what you’re saying, like, if, you know the system is broken, we need to transition to a new one. And what do you do in the interim is really important because I, I don’t think that you can let society unravel.

[00:53:52] Jason Maier: I don’t think that you can sort of like, like you said, apocalyptic economic outcomes. I think that you need to keep itlo, keep it floating for long enough to transition out of it. And, and I think you’re right. Like just saying, okay, well we’re going to save the system by just removing both of those things.

[00:54:08] Jason Maier: No more QE, no more UBI it, what that means is like the whole thing just deteriorates. There’s too much debt in the system for that to be sustainable. It just can’t happen. So there’s not really any good options. Right. Except to just keep people, educating people about Bitcoin and hope that we get a smooth transition to a new system.

[00:54:26] Preston Pysh: It all comes down to education. Yeah. Just back to my concern, I’m just concerned about the person yelling, nerd, give me my money. Right.

[00:54:34] Jason Maier: Yeah. Right, right, right. Shut up. Exactly. I mean, I’ve been called worse than nerd, so I’ll take-

[00:54:38] Preston Pysh: Yeah, yeah. We’ll keep it here. Yeah.

[00:54:39] Jason Maier: Yeah, yeah. Okay.

[00:54:40] Preston Pysh: In your book, you talk a little bit about Bitcoin being bipartisan.

[00:54:48] Preston Pysh: You talk about Lummis and Gillibrand working together since writing the book. I’m curious if that opinion has changed or you still kind of hold true to what you were talking about.

[00:55:00] Jason Maier: I think, you know, I tried to describe it in the book as sort of aspirational. I wrote the book as quickly as I could in good conscious, because I know that this is a thing, right?

[00:55:10] Jason Maier: Like I, I think that my biggest fear is that Bitcoin becomes this political football, that both sides are just using to fight against each other. And you see plenty of that right now, especially the loudest voices in Congress are, are doing this. And one of the hopes behind the book is to say, this might be one of the very few things where we don’t need it to be a political wedge issue.

[00:55:33] Jason Maier: We don’t need to divide people on this. We can actually have people coming together with this issue. I think that the intention behind what I wrote and sort of my thinking now is sort of as aspirationally, like I, the book is not written to change politicians’ minds. It’s written to educate voters.

[00:55:50] Jason Maier: And so there’s plenty of people like the addressable market of people who vote Democrat because they don’t see any good option. And there’s just going to vote for Democrats and they don’t know a lot about Bitcoin is pretty big. So I’m thinking, like, I’m hoping that if we get enough voters educated that pushes the politicians to a point where it actually is truly bipartisan.

[00:56:10] Jason Maier: It’s not a political wedge issue. It’s not just used to divide or score political points. And I do think that that there’s still hope. I think that a lot of the people who are against Bitcoin are democratic people, but they’re also older. And so I, I, I do think that there’s an opportunity to sort of educate people about Bitcoin and its benefits.

[00:56:31] Jason Maier: Before it reaches that tipping point of, you know, like a lot of the other political issues we have where you’re never going to change your mind, right? Like, there’s just no way you’re going to admit defeat on like, oh, I was wrong about abortion for the last 30 years. It’s not going to happen. So like, I don’t want that to happen with Bitcoin, and that’s why I wrote the book.

[00:56:47] Jason Maier: That’s one of the main reasons I wrote the book. Let’s get us away from that tipping point. Let’s see this as a, a, a place where people can come together and actually have conversations and talk about, like you said, solutions instead of just problems. There’s a lot of potential for that to happen. I guess the short answer is it’s an as like, bipartisan approach of Bitcoin is an aspiration and it continues to be,

[00:57:08] Preston Pysh: I love that response.

[00:57:10] Preston Pysh: What is something you believe very deeply that you think very few people understand or appreciate?

[00:57:16] Jason Maier: That’s a good, I mean, like the obvious answer’s Bitcoin, but I, I think that, yeah

[00:57:23] Preston Pysh: Beyond Bitcoin.

[00:57:25] Jason Maier: Yeah, no, of course. There’s a lot of different directions I can go with that. I’m trying not to get canceled.

[00:57:29] Jason Maier: So maybe we should, I think that, you know, in the general populace, the, just the definition of money and what it means is a huge hurdle for a lot of people just starting. I think that that’s probably like number one conversation. Like you don’t know what money is and that’s okay, let’s learn about it.

[00:57:48] Jason Maier: I think within the Bitcoin community, what I get a lot is there’s three kinds of people, people who agree with me politically and they’re also into Bitcoin. People who disagree with me politically, but they like what I’m doing because it means more people will learn about Bitcoin and they’re supportive of my idea.

[00:58:04] Jason Maier: And then people who disagree with me politically and just absolutely are rabid about like fighting me on Twitter or whatever. And what I get most often is sort of people defining for me what they think progressive means in this very extreme echo chamber way. And it paints me in a way that says, oh, well that’s an easy argument to argue against.

[00:58:25] Jason Maier: So that’s how I’m going to define what your view is. So I just think that within the community, Bitcoin offers, at least for me, a lot of opportunities to talk to people I don’t agree with politically, and then find common ground. And what I found fascinating about that is that. If you have two people who are Bitcoiners, then they can have a conversation about even political issues, even touchy political issues, and that you can almost trust that the other person’s going to come at it with it, with good faith.

[00:58:53] Jason Maier: That you’re going to have a real, meaningful conversation. And even if they say something you disagree with, they’re not trying to score a point with you or trying to make fun of you or call you names. They’re actually just trying to engage and understand better. And I’ve had countless conversations with people who are, don’t agree with me politically, they agree with me on Bitcoin, and let’s talk.

[00:59:13] Jason Maier: Here’s another thing I don’t like, I don’t like how Democrats say this, and we actually have a conversation that actually get somewhere and people understand maybe both sides a little bit better. Like that’s a beautiful thing. I don’t think there’s, there’s hardly any of that going on now in our society.

[00:59:28] Jason Maier: So I think Bitcoin offers that option for us to just have better conversations with one another. That doesn’t really answer your question, but that’s something that I feel strongly about in terms of like, yeah, the opportunity Bitcoin provides for us, even within our community. Even if you’re onboarded to Bitcoin, go and talk to somebody you don’t agree with politically, you’re going to have a better conversation than out in the, the rest of the world.

[00:59:50] Preston Pysh: It’s so, so important to focus on the ideas and not the individuals and yeah, and separate that when you’re having discussions into, into just, I guess, have a deep appreciation for critical thinking and picking apart ideas as deep as you possibly can to, to come at a truth, because I think both people want to arrive at the truth.

[01:00:15] Preston Pysh: But I think especially nowadays, so many people just have this emotional baggage that really gets in the way of their ability to continue to stay focused on the idea and to critically dissect it. Like their yeah, their insecurities are manifesting themselves in the way of that pursuit.

[01:00:36] Jason Maier: And yeah, I agree.

[01:00:38] Jason Maier: And I, you know, I’ll just add to it where in the best case, both people are having this conversation and they want to arrive to the truth or better understand even if there is no truth, you know, capital T truth, trying to understand, in the worst case, you just have two people who both want to win, right?

[01:00:54] Jason Maier: And that’s why people like, they just want to win argument, right? Yeah. And that’s not helpful, and that’s why you get people just sort of going to their own corners, right? Like, I’m just going to talk to people that agree with me about this because I don’t want to have to like, you know, fight with this other person about it.

[01:01:07] Jason Maier: And so, just in my own experience, I like say I didn’t. I haven’t like removed myself from like my echo chamber. I’ve just sort of added another one and just a kind of a, I don’t want to say unique, but it’s a pretty like rare experience for me to sort of be in like liberal politics, echo chamber and then also bitcoin echo chamber and see like take a step back like, wow, you guys are all like, sometimes you guys are saying the same thing and you’re just fighting over it anyway.

[01:01:33] Jason Maier: Yeah. So it’s, it’s just been an interesting sort of vantage point to say like, I never expected myself to dive into the Bitcoin rabbit hole or be part of like Bitcoin, Twitter, but you know, that echo chambers is a different echo chamber than the one I’m used to. And it’s interesting to see the, the dynamic relationship between those two things.

[01:01:51] Preston Pysh: The way you describe that of a person having the desire or the need to win and tying that to insecurity and tying that to just. I’m going to take this a step here. I, I hope I don’t lose people. When a person doesn’t have any disposable income, it’s really hard for them to feel like they’re actually progressing in society or able to move forward.

[01:02:15] Preston Pysh: In fact, when you’re a net consumer of society, because you just can’t progress, you’re actually feeling like you’re falling back. I think you actually developed this insecurity of, well, I’m just not going to lose next time I have an engagement with anybody, regardless of whatever the topic is. I just, I’m tired of losing, I’m tired of falling back and feeling like I, you know, if you’re playing a video game, I used to get to level three, now I’m only getting to level two, and now I’m only getting to level one.

[01:02:44] Preston Pysh: I am not going to lose. And it’s that insecurity of feeling like maybe you’re falling behind. And I think that’s why it’s so prevalent throughout society that the engagements that we’re seeing online are just immediately turning to, well, I’m not going to lose no matter what. And it’s not even about the, the, the discussion point or the idea, it’s about not losing.

[01:03:07] Jason Maier: Yeah. And I had this conversation with a colleague the other day where it like, I don’t think I ever would’ve been able to see this without like Bitcoin, right. Like seeing this world. Right. But it’s almost like so clear to me that. That fear sells. Getting people afraid is going to get you more clicks, get you more views, get you more viewership, like whatever.

[01:03:29] Jason Maier: And so this is what we’re seeing from the mainstream media. And right now, and at least in America, you just get to pick what flavor of fear do you want, right? Like the left has their own media that they’re going to make you afraid of these things and the right’s going to make you afraid of these things.

[01:03:42] Jason Maier: And really all you get to do is pick the flavor of, of what you’re, what you’re scared of. And so, to your point, like when you’re fearful, Of the other side or like, you know, fearful of your situation and like feeling hopeless, like you can’t win no matter what, and the game is rigged against you. Then people, like, they don’t, they’re not their best s their best selves, right?

[01:04:02] Jason Maier: They’re going to not engage in that conversation. In good faith. They’re going to try to win. They’re not going to lose. And so it’s just not a healthy place to, you know, I don’t have any solutions to fixing the whole like, media empire or how we manipulate people to be fearful. But at least recognizing that that’s happening is, is really important.

[01:04:20] Jason Maier: And it’s not just one side, right? Like it’s both sides happening at the same time. Just different flavors of it.

[01:04:27] Preston Pysh: Jason, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this conversation with you. For people that want to learn more, here’s the book, A Progressive case for Bitcoin. Anything else that you want to highlight or that you want us to put in the show notes when we wrap it up?

[01:04:40] Jason Maier: No. Yeah, I mean, I appreciate the chance to talk. I mean, it was, it was great. I think that if you’re looking for the book, you can find it on is the website I set up for the book, and you can follow me on Twitter. @cjasonmaier is the, is the Twitter handle and just appreciate the time and the, and the support.

[01:04:58] Jason Maier: Thank you, Preston.

[01:05:00] Preston Pysh: Yeah. Loved having you on. Do you have any tricky questions that we can put in the show notes for all these hardcore math Bitcoin people?

[01:05:08] Jason Maier: I’ll spare people the double angle formula if you, I’m already having trouble making friends in the Bitcoin space to give homework. Yeah.

[01:05:18] Preston Pysh: Thank you for making time and coming on the show, Jason. Appreciate it.

[01:05:21] Jason Maier: Yeah, thank you.

[01:05:23] Preston Pysh: If you guys enjoyed this conversation, be sure to follow the show on whatever podcast application you use. Just search for, We Study Billionaires. The Bitcoin specific shows come out every Wednesday, and I’d love to have you as a regular listener. If you enjoyed the show or you learned something new or you found it valuable, if you can leave a review, we would really appreciate that. And it’s something that helps others find the interview in the search algorithm.

[01:05:44] Preston Pysh: So anything you can do to help out with a review, we would just greatly appreciate. And with that, thanks for listening and I’ll catch you again next week.

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