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Voiceofra is banned

LOL. Would you like to apply this generally, e.g. as in "The principle of Rule of Law is a bad idea because it's an invitation to gaming the laws. Much better to have a tyrant...err... benevolent philosopher-king decide matters because it's harder to game him".

I favor more of a polycentric legal system. Call on someone agreeable to all parties to solve disputes when they happen on a mostly case-by-case basis with some generally agreed guidelines.

Voiceofra is banned

Downvotes on posts/comments older than X time affect the downvoters karma the same way as they do the downvoted.

Downvotes made after X time from the original posting affect karma at a rate of y%

Downvotes from users with karma below X don't affect the downvoted's karma score

All of these are made on the assumption that malicious downvoters are engaged in a E-Peen measuring contest using Karma as the measuring tool.

Why bitcoin?

Only if the miners are all behaving rationally. Sunk Cost fallacy is a thing in far more people that it is not.

Plus the investment in the mining equipment market will make for more efficient mining equipment, which would be needed for the new difficulty. We'd have a second mining equipment bubble.

Why bitcoin?

State actors would need to aquire mining hardware in order to make a 51% attack. Several million dollars worth of it. Trying to do so would have obvious effects on the small bitcoin mining equipment market, and unless the government turned all their machines on at once, they would spend the time they ramp up to a 51% attack actually strengthening the network, and causing other miners to also buy more equipment to keep up with the new difficulty.

This is certainly a possibility, if someone in the government recognizes the potential threat bitcoin offers to the government money monopoly. However, anyone smart enough to recognize the threat is also incentiveized to not tell the government about the threat, or even downplay the threat, while investing in bitcoin themselves, as if the threat materialized they will become significantly wealthier than they would through a government job.

As for the inefficient argument, the operating costs of bitcoin (mining) should be compared to the operating costs of more traditional money transfer services of similar size. Think armored cars, vaults, double book accounting, and other such things that a 3-4 billion dollar firm engaged in money transfer would need, and compare those costs to the costs of blockchain mining.

Why bitcoin?

Bitcoiner here, so bear that in mind

A 51% attack is hard. It's come close to happening once with a mining pool called GHash.io. The community quickly responded, and as of right now, the largest pool has about 17% of the network hashing power, and GHash.io has about 4%. The current state of network power distribution can be viewed at https://blockchain.info/pools , as well as other blockchain watching services. It is in any particular miners interest to be in the largest pool possible, but counter to any miners purpose to be in any pool with the possibility of making a 51% attack, since a successful 51% attack would be the end of bitcoin's market value, which makes their investment in mining equipment worthless. This has, so far, been successful.

Each wallet does not need to contain the entire blockchain. It is generally recommended that, if you are not running a full node contributing to the network, you use a thin wallet that queries the blockchain, or a trusted blockchain monitoring service, in order to asses balances and get data needed to make new transactions in a much less data-intesive manner.

Governments are not keen to give up their monopoly on the money supply, but there are limits to how much they can do to maintain it. There have been several instances historically where government control of the money supply is undermined by the economic reality of people just using other things to conduct business, regardless of the legal status of such business.

Mining is not "wasted" computing power, but rather power being put to the specific purpose of verifying and securing the integrity of the bitcoin blockchain database. It is no more a waste of resources, than the concrete, steel, and construction time of a bank vault. It's just not doing anything else, like creating an emergency shelter, or storing non-bitcoin valuables.

If you have a non-currency based idea to get people to properly secure a publicly editable, decentralized, ledger such that malicious actors cannot alter it to suit their needs, I'm more than willing to hear it. Until I see such a proposal, I don't see the addition of currency to a blockchain as a complication, but rather as a necessary function. There has to be something which incentivises people to engage in the process of securing the ledger, and that is the receipt of valuable entries on the ledger, those entries being useable as currency.

Why you should consider buying Bitcoin right now (Jan 2015) if you have high risk tolerance

This is, IIRC the long aftermath of the 3rd major bubble. One in June 2011 (to ~$30), one in April 2013 (To ~$220) and one in November 2013 (To ~$1100).

Personally, I'm not expecting a major recovery until the protocol hits the next halving of the mining rate, which is July of 2016 on the current mining timetable. In the mean time, I'm dollar cost averaging my investment in Bitcoin, and stacking up whatever I can get.

Fighting Mosquitos

No, I am not.

I personally rate the probability of catastrophic negative effects of this action as significantly lower than the probability of any negative effects, and the probability of no negative effects.

I am also speaking from a position of ignorance, and I don't like making decisions from ignorance.

I don't know what the ill effects would be, but the benefit is clear. If more cheap information is readily available, I want it (and some has been provided). If some amount of expensive evidence would increase my estimate of catastrophic effects, and that evidence can be clearly defined and gathered, I want it. If only vague, hard to measure risks remain, I say do it.

Fighting Mosquitos

I'm a little cautious about deliberately eliminating a species, even a harmful to humans one. The environment is a complex system, and sticking our monkey hands in and pulling leavers can backfire in unpredicted ways.

What other environmental effects do the mosquitoes have? Do they control some other pest species? Are they food for something larger? Does the additional infection vector of mosquito bites significantly improve the general immune system functions of humans or other species bitten by these mosquitoes?

Hal Finney has just died.

Hal Finney has not died, he has entered long term cryopreservation . Death is permanent, Hal still could get better.

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