This day in 2009 — only eight years ago — the first block of the blockchain of the Bitcoin decentralized payment system, was established by the creator of the system, Satoshi Nakamoto.
Bitcoin spent years building business on the dark web, but just in the last few months has exploded upon the legitimate business world. Everyone seems to be getting into blockchain investments, Bitcoin in particular (although Bitcoin is just one of several applications built upon the blockchain technology).
Ironically, the first block that Nakamoto launched was called the Genesis block.
Why would I mention a money system/hot investment opportunity on a blog about thriller novels?
Because at the heart of some of the very best thrillers lies a conspiracy and I love a damned good conspiracy. Ludlum, Baldacci, and the paranoia king himself, Dan Brown (in admittedly small doses).
The thought occurred to me that the whole Bitcoin phenomenon could be a huge private conspiracy to tear down the world’s financial institutions. In my quiet corner of the globe, I have not yet seen Bitcoin in operation. I only know it exists because the media and the Internet say it is, and we all know how reliable the word of those two estates is, right?
Everyone keeps expecting the Bitcoin investment bubble to explode sooner, rather than later. But everyone is holding on, anyway–have you noticed? There are even new investors scrambling to hop aboard the gravy train, figuring it’s better late than never.
It reminds me strongly of the everyman investment craze that preceded the Wall Street crash in 1929.
The whole point about the blockchain technology is that it keeps participants anonymous. It allows a cartel kingpin to handshake a seventeen million dollar deal with a buyer in Europe…who could very well be the CIA sniffing around for a clue, but who cares? The kingpin can’t see them. They can’t see him. Money is exchanged, the deal is done, everyone wins (unless it really was the CIA, in which case…sucker!).
It’s been said that decentralized money systems could bring the world into a new phase of political power. So why are current power holders tripping over themselves to invest in the technology? It can’t be simply to shut the tech down once they get a majority sharehold, or to spike the system and make it stumble. The tech is open sourced software — out there for anyone to download and use. There must be thousands of copies of the software by now, living on hard drives and cloud storage across the globe. There are a dozen other Bitcoin clones that would happily take the #1 spot, too (again, allegedly waiting).
I can’t help thinking of the British armada made of wood and canvas that De Needle stumbled over in Eye of the Needle, by Ken Follett.
You have to ask yourself who would benefit from the implosion of western financial institutions?
The possible candidates make an unsettling list.
Now it is 2018, I’ll be settling into the conception work and plotting for the first thriller series.
I’m thinking a nice meaty conspiracy might be in order….