In the latest issue of Reason Magazine, I reviewed Digital Cash by Finn Brunton. The article is now available online! Teaser quote:
As bitcoin turns 10, a new book aims to chronicle the digital currency's ideological origins. "The technology alone is not enough," Finn Brunton writes in Digital Cash [...]. "Even with good math, scientific discoveries, the free circulation of ideas, reliable hardware and running code, you need a desire, a vision, a dissatisfaction, a fantasy, a story." The source of that story was a movement called the cypherpunks, which started to coalesce in the late 1980s. In turn, the cypherpunks did not appear sui generis but were the culmination of decades — centuries, really — of broadly libertarian thought and activism.
Okay, here's one more teaser quote:
We who are invested in digital cash — financially, ideologically, or otherwise — tend to be dreamers. We are cynical about incumbent systems but starry-eyed enough to hope that remaking the world's economic foundations will fix everything else too. It may be grandiose to imagine that this is possible, but the imagining is what fuels efforts toward concrete progress.
Go read the damn thing — I'm proud of it! My thanks to Jesse Walker for being a stellar editor 🤗
Header image: 100% true-to-life depiction of mining bitcoin, captured by photographer Marco Verch.