“Putin can do a lot of things, but he can’t freeze a bitcoin account”, wrote Alex Gladstein, Chief Strategy Officer at Human Rights Foundation.
Is bitcoin a serious financial asset? As more billionaires and institutional investors are eagerly entering the bitcoin bandwagon, the answer is quite evident. Indians alone have invested more than $40 billion into digital currencies in 2020.
But bitcoin is more than just that.
For millions of people under authoritarian regimes and crumbling economies, bitcoin is a lifeline. It is a financial tool that will win them freedom.
The Bitcoin Revolution: How does Bitcoin secure Freedom?
According to the Human Rights Foundation, 53% of the world’s population, more than 4 billion people, live under authoritarianism.
For people in democracies with stable economies, monetary hardships and the denial of fundamental human rights are hard to imagine.
Fix the Money, Fix the World
Dictators and neocolonialists like France (Yes, France!) have hardly more than one way to control. And that is by controlling money.
When the Communist Party in China wants to send a chilling message to its dissidents, it bans their access to financial services.
When the Military Junta in Myanmar organized a coup against the elected government, it shut down banks and turned off ATMs.
When Putin’s Russia wants to block donors contributing to human rights organizations, it suspends their accounts and takes away their funds.
When countries like Nigeria and Belarus want to curb nationwide protests against corruption, bank accounts of activists are frozen.
The trend is pretty much the same across all tyrannical governments, from Miguel Díaz-Canel’s Cuba to Erdogan’s Turkey.
Besides, even democracies with supposedly libertarian values have consistently expanded the surveillance state and imposed financial restrictions.
How has Bitcoin helped safeguard Human Rights?
Hyperinflation due to a mismanaged economy by corrupt governments has eaten into people’s lifetime savings.
Last year, in Maduro’s Venezuela, the annual inflation rate touched 6500%. Since then, many people have converted their resources into bitcoin and have fled the country.
In politically unstable Palestine, Cuba, and Iran, individuals face the state’s repressive sanctions for speaking up. Bitcoin serves them hope to earn income and receive remittances from abroad.
For Belarusia’s workers and students on a strike against the controversial presidential election, $3 million dollars worth of bitcoin sent from across the borders fed their families.
And in October last year, bitcoins raised by a feminist coalition in Nigeria were used to buy gas masks for protests while their bank accounts were frozen.
What makes bitcoin unstoppable?
There is one thing all tyrants love and that is censorship. Unfortunately for them, bitcoin is uncensorable internet money and thus unstoppable.
The borderless, permissionless, seizure-resistant bitcoin money is an alternative to exceedingly centralized financial institutions.
Bitcoin is freedom money, an escape from tyranny.
Does your contribution matter?
3 years ago, one could easily deny bitcoin’s significance. But today, with exchanges popping all over the world, and bitcoin’s market value surpassing $1 trillion in April, bitcoin cannot be easily brushed aside.
Maybe our understanding of bitcoin is limited. Maybe it is just an investment class for many.
However, the global liquidity, brought about by investors like you and me, is strengthening bitcoin. And bitcoin is helping someone somewhere to fetch their rightful freedom.
P.S: KuberVerse is an educational initiative. Anything expressed here directly or indirectly is not investment advice. And we ask you to do your own research before investing.