Bitcoin—the jury is still out

Bitcoin—the jury is still out

The biggest civil court case in recent history is winding down. Both sides of the Kleiman v Wright trial have made their case, and the jury is now out on deliberation. I figure this may be the last time I can write something without it being a retrospective “in hindsight” viewpoint. So I will take that liberty and give an opinion while I can still say that an official court ruling unsullies my viewpoint.

And what a case this has been. More than that, the drama and differences in the internet and mainstream and digital media responses have been nothing short of remarkable. Remarkable in the sense that it is objectively apparent that the age of disinformation is truly upon us. Journalism is essentially dead, and in the plethora and chaos of information available to us, the power falls into the hands of those who control the platforms and portals through which we get that information (Twitter, Facebook, and the usual villains). Future generations will refer to the saga of Dr. Craig Wright, aka Satoshi Nakamoto, as the epitome of tragedies of the chaotic information age, hopefully, the last one.

In the future, pulling off such a widespread media disinformation campaign will become difficult, given that data will be more and more traceable thanks to BSV and the Metanet. But today, never before has there been such illogical public outcry against someone who simply refuses to give the public what they want, which is instant answers (that they don’t deserve).

Those who are not convinced that Dr. Wright is Satoshi, given the evidence revealed in this trial, will never be convinced because their salary/livelihood/reputation depends on them not believing. Essentially, because some people were born into an age where the internet allowed you to say whatever you felt like, without any consideration for public norms of decorum, common decency, or any mutual respect for fellow members of the human race. They have taken their high school locker room antics a tad too far and have now firmly put themselves between a rock and a hard place after screaming foolish slander from the tops of the mountains of the digital frontier. They have a tough choice—that is, either throwing away all logic and common sense and continuing to play the ignoramus fool, or doing something unthinkable for the millennium generation: admitting that they were wrong online. Many, it seems, predictably have decided to stick to their guns until the music stops. (Or at least until they can find other gullible people to ‘unload their bags onto’, then fade quietly from the public eye).

I have made a video stating all the technical reasons as to why I believed that Craig is Satoshi in the past, but the court case has revealed more non-technical evidence to support the claim. To me, this stuff wasn’t needed, as I don’t need to see a calculus’s professors credentials to know that they have a mastery of calculus. All you need to do is attend their class (and be well-versed in mathematics to follow the material).

However, to summarize the corroborated evidence supporting Craig as Satoshi claim:

  • His ex-wife was the primary Wright behind the business partnership W&K (with Dave), and that their relationship ultimately fell apart due to his unwavering work on the Bitcoin project.
  • His uncle, a decorated war veteran, spoke often times in the past about cryptography and computer science topics, illustrating his history with cybersecurity and computers, and recalls them talking about an invention that may be the prototype of Bitcoin, the Lasseters coin system.(Lasseters is a large casino and gaming conglomerate) in 2005. (This alone puts him above and beyond Nick Szabo1, Adam Back2 and the other “experts” who have tried to claim the Satoshi moniker. He also went into the background of Craig’s fascination with all things Japanese.
  • His history in the gaming industry, explaining why a version of online poker was included in the original version of the Bitcoin code release, also relating back to the Lasseters coin.
  • The fact that forged documents, allegedly implying partnership between Dave and Craig, were revealed to be more likely forged by someone else, someone close to him, and planted.
  • Likely culprits who would have incentive to help Ira in an elaborate extortion plot, Jamie Wilson, and Patrick Paige, have been revealed. Both had an association with Dave and Craig, and whose stories seem suspicious at best and require scrutiny.
  • Forged emails dating back to 2008 between Craig and Dave were using a domain rcjbr.org that didn’t exist in 2008—and the forgers didn’t know that. Importantly some of the forged documents were sent from an ISP in a suburb of Brisbane (the location of Craig’s company), but at the time Craig was known to be 570km away, at the site of his ranch where Bitcoins were being mined.
  • Phil Wilson, another claimant to the moniker Satoshi Nakamoto, showed “evidence” (not court submitted, just unsubstantiated unverified documents) that the domain was created between him and Craig. Phil claims that he was the mastermind behind Bitcoin, and Craig just helped him. Unfortunately for Phil, it came out in the trial that the name of that domain are the initials of Craig and Ramona and family members. And Craig hadn’t met Ramona until 2010, showing that the forger of the documents in all likelihood wasn’t Craig, but someone or some people who wanted to implicate Craig later on in 2013 during the height of his legal issues with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). Perhaps to trump up evidence in order to substantiate a multi-billion-dollar lawsuit?
  • The ATO case, which Craig won in a settlement, showed that ATO had corrupt officers who made false records and leaked information to “shake down” their quarries. Some key evidence of the plaintiff’s case turned out to be unverified documents that the ATO later denied as unofficial.

With all the character witnesses testimonies, and the countless writings of Craig himself which exhibits intimate knowledge of Bitcoin, it is completely ridiculous that there are still online personalities who will continue to contrive and conjure up fantastic reasons why he cannot be Satoshi. The most recent claims now that Phil Wilson must be Satoshi because his story seems to “fit the pieces and fill in the missing holes” is the most moronic of all. (And I don’t usually use that term, but in this case, there is nothing that describes it sufficiently other than moronic). That some people will be more apt to trust a completely unverified story from what likely is a no one other than a rather insignificant ex-employee of Craig illustrates the cancer that the internet is suffering from today. And that some people are more willing to believe a good story than logic if it goes against their existing beliefs. 

What happened to critical thinking? Do they not teach that anymore in schools? Has our society degraded so far in just one generation? They would rather trust a message that comes from someone that they don’t know, who uses the excuse of wanting to remain private and low-key as an excuse for not providing any additional information. The irony is that Craig also wanted to stay private but was not given the choice. In the end, it just boils down to people only listening to voices that they like, and not to the voice who is making the most sense, or even the person who has the most believable story, simply because it is a story that they don’t like, or wish to identify with.

It seems that the internet has divided people into cults of belief, not unlike religious cults in the real world. BTC has become the Scientology of the new world, and you have less of a chance of convincing a Scientologist that L.Ron Hubbard was just a sci-fi writer (and a bad one at that!), than convincing them that the most likely guy to be Satoshi, is the guy who has been working on Bitcoin since 2003, and still is to this day. To them, that would be sacrilege, as they have already created the god of their religion, built the altar, erected a statue, and they cannot accept a living person standing to disprove their belief system3.

A statue of a person with a cloudy sky behind him

All hail Satoshi Nakamoto, our lord and savior from evil governments, the oppression of laws, society, and common human decency.

Without a living inventor, they can always just point to the price appreciation to show that they are right and continue to recruit more unsuspecting converts. Why? Leaderless movements have a way of turning into religions. It is the same reason that cults exist… because those who make it their livelihood to perpetuate it, depend on them NOT believing otherwise. And while the jury is still out on the Kleiman v. Wright case, it is also still out on BTC and whether or not it is worth anything more than the Ponzi scheme cult that it has become. In its meteoric rise in a misguided attempt at taking down the banks as they were the ultimate middleman, the shadowy secret leaders of the BTC movement have become precisely those middlemen that they profess to despise.

/Jerry Chan

***

Notes:

[1] While never outright saying that he was Satoshi, Nick Szabo never denied it strongly, rather allowing the public to “come to their own conclusions.” He later capitalized on this reputation as one of the Satoshi potentials when he supported the Ethereum project.

[2] Adam never actually said he was Satoshi, but he all too often points out that Bitcoin was based on his hashcash project, going as far as to say that “Bitcoin is just hashcash with inflation control.” 

Clearly he missed the whole part about the transaction structure of Bitcoin, Bitcoin script, contracting, and, well, everything else outside of the SHA256 mining function. He has over the years, enjoyed and stoked his fans’ belief that he is the secret creator of Bitcoin, capitalizing on this reputation to land him his present position as an executive of Blockstream, a company that develops and builds solutions to the self-inflicted scaling problems of the BTC network.

[3] That has made its leaders unbelievably rich. Well, paper gains anyway. They can only cash OUT, when you dear reader, cash IN.

New to Bitcoin? Check out CoinGeek’s Bitcoin for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about Bitcoin—as originally envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto—and blockchain.

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