I have been looking for a great video/podcast to share with people who are newer to bitcoin. I believe I have found one that, while long, is very good!
BTC001: Bitcoin Common Misconceptions w/ Robert Breedlove
I don’t have much to comment about for the start of the video. It is just a very informative video and I recommend you listen.
There are 2 time stamps I wanted to highlight towards the end of the video where Robert Breedlove is discussing challenges, risks or arguments against bitcoin.
The first one starts at ~1:39:01. Here he is discussing a common argument against bitcoin that it has “no intrinsic value”. An article from Bitcoin Magazine – DOES BITCOIN HAVE INTRINSIC VALUE -( discusses the thought of if anything has intrinsic value, it doesn’t. Value is only defined when some outside entity is able to use any resource. For example, an ocean world would not have intrinsic value to humans as we are land dwelling, but it would have more value to fish.
Robert Breedlove makes a distinction between intrinsic value vs. industrial value. When many people make the argument that Bitcoin has no intrinsic value they are comparing it against gold, which has an industrial value in that it can be used in many production processes or to make many useful things. It also has value as art or jewelry. Gold actually has no intrinsic value since as noted before, nothing has intrinsic value. Approximately half of new yearly gold mined is used for jewelry and industrial use and half is used for store of value or “monetary premium” by individuals or central banks. This is in comparison to bitcoin which as people have noted, has no industrial use, it ONLY has monetary premium. The benefit of bitcoin’s preservation of value vs say US dollars is that bitcoin has a capped supply of 21 million coins. Once you buy some bitcoin, you are sure of how much you own relative to the total pie. With USD or any other fiat currency (government issued currency) you don’t know how much more will be issued and will erode your value via inflation.
The other good discussion comes at 2:00. The free market of history had chosen Gold as the benchmark for measuring value. This is because it was the “hardest” money. It had the least inflation. Gold’s inflation was relative to how much gold was mined each year, which is ~2%/year relative to the current total world gold supply. When you take the inverse of that and compare the “stock” total existing gold (in tons) divided by the new production each year (flow) you get a number, for example 100 tons existing/2 tons new production = 50 stock to flow number (S2F).
The “flow” of new material creation compared to the existing “stock”. Commodities like oil and corn have very high flows relative to the current stock which produces a small stock to flow number. Learn more about Stock to flow here.
There is not a lot of existing corn or oil carryover each year, relative to the new production. Because of this these things usually have relatively cheap prices since there is so much new creation. Things that have low flows relative to the existing stock have higher values as it’s harder to get the new stuff. In the past gold and silver have both been used as money. But gold eventually won out as the “harder” money to produce. There is more silver produced relative to the current stock of world wide silver, compared to gold.
Silver has a stock to flow number of 22.
Gold and bitcoin both have stock to flow numbers of approximately 50-60. But in 2024 (during the next bitcoin halving) bitcoin’s stock to flow number will increase to 120. This is because the issuance of new bitcoin will decrease in half.
This stock to flow of 120 will be the highest Stock to flow number of any asset ever, and it’s only going higher as the issuance of new bitcoin continues to be cut in half every 4 years, due to the technical nature of bitcoin. To learn more about the halving read here.
Coming back to the conversation, in the past the world wide free market had selected gold as the preferred store of value due to its “hard” nature and high stock to flow number. With bitcoin having a higher stock to flow going forward, along with all the other benefits it has over gold doesn’t it make sense for bitcoin to be the preferred store of value?
I leave you with a final very short 2 minute video related to discussing what is money and value? Money is best thought of as a tool to compare the value of different things or services. You can measure the value of a house, and apple and a massage in the same currency and compare their value. If the money is inflating then the price becomes confusing for measuring things. It’d be like if a ruler was changing as you were trying to measure a table. Inflation is not good or needed for an economy to work.
If you want to talk about bitcoin you know where to find me!