Reporting from Lake Tahoe, California…

The mainstream media’s job is to a.) make you angry and/or b.) make you fearful. Reporting on actual news, discovering the truth, and making you an informed individual is not part of the modus operandi.

Walk away. The best way to kill the beast is to stop feeding it your energy.

Fortunately, it’s becoming easier and easier to do so.

Here’s what the mainstream media won’t tell you: The current power structure will continue to wane as we move toward a more distributed, more informed media. Eventually, issues meant to rob your productive energy and waste it on perpetual tail-chasing will fall by the wayside.

And this trend, as you may know, is nothing new. Although it’s hit a few speed bumps along the way, it’s still your friend.

“In the early 1990s,” author and Tapscott Group CEO Don Tapscott said in a recent interview, “we said the old media is centralized. It’s one way, it’s one to many; it’s controlled by powerful forces, and everyone is a passive recipient. The new web, the new media, we said, is one to one, it’s many to many; it’s highly distributed, and it’s not centralized. Everyone’s a participant, not an inert recipient. This has an awesome neutrality. It will be what we want it to be, and we can craft a much more egalitarian, prosperous society where everyone gets to share in the wealth that they create.”

Unfortunately, the Internet took a different turn. Large centralized companies, bit by bit, created large plantations where content creators do most of the work and the behemoths reap most of the benefits — and often abuse the users’ trust to boot.

“Lots of great things have happened,” Tapscott goes on, “but overall the benefits of the digital age have been asymmetrical. For example, we have this great asset of data that’s been created by us, and yet we don’t get to keep it. It’s owned by a tiny handful of powerful companies or governments. They monetize that data or, in the case of governments, use it to spy on us, and our privacy is undermined.”

Fortunately, the tides are turning. And, as Tapscott mentions in his book Blockchain Revolution, very little on the web will go untouched. And it begins and ends with… you guessed it… blockchain technology: “I’ve been at this 35 years, writing about the digital age,” he said. “I’ve never seen a technology that I thought had greater potential for humanity.”

“What if,” Tapscott goes on, “there were a second generation of the Internet that enabled the true, peer-to-peer exchange of value? We don’t have that now. If I’m going to send some money to somebody else, I have to go through an intermediary — a powerful bank, a credit-card company — or I need a government to authenticate who I am and who you are. What if we could do that peer to peer? What if there was a protocol — call it the trust protocol — that enabled us to do transactions, to do commerce, to exchange money, without a powerful third party? This would be amazing.

“You pick any industry, and this technology holds huge potential to disrupt it, creating a more prosperous world where people get to participate in the value that they create. The music industry, for example, is a disaster, at least from the point of view of the musicians. They used to have most of the value taken by the big labels. Then, along came the technology companies, which took a whole bunch of value, and the songwriters and musicians are left with crumbs at the end. What if the new music industry was a distributed app on the blockchain, where I, as a songwriter, could post my song onto the blockchain with a smart contract specifying how it is to be used?”

The most compelling thing about the current blockchain space, though, is its incredible potential for investment. The space is so new, and so few truly understand the magnitude of what blockchains can do, that for those “in the know,” it’ll be like shooting fish in a barrel.

Tapscott goes on:

“It feels a lot like the early ’90s to me. You’ve got all the smartest venture capitalists, the smartest programmers, the smartest business executives, the smartest people in banking, the smartest government of people, the smartest entrepreneurs all over this thing. That’s always a sign that something big is going on. Is it an irrational exuberance? I don’t know. Last year, $1 billion went into venture alone in this area. I’m more hopeful because I can see the power of the applications to disrupt things for the good. Rather than just redistributing wealth, maybe we could change the way wealth is distributed in the first place. Imagine a Kickstarter-like campaign to launch a company where you have 50 million investors and everybody puts in a couple of dollars, or very small amounts.

Imagine all those people who have a supercomputer in their pocket, who are connected to a network but don’t have a bank account, because they only own a couple of pigs and a chicken. That’s their bank account. Imagine if they could be brought in, 2 billion people, into the global financial system. What could that do? Seventy percent of all people who own land have a tenuous title to that land. And you’re in a developing-world country in Latin America, and some dictator comes to power and he says, ‘Well, you may have a piece of paper that says you own your little farm, but my central computer says my friend owns your farm.’

Imagine a world where foreign aid didn’t get consumed in the bureaucracy but went directly to the beneficiary under a smart contract? Rather than a $60 billion car-service aggregation, why couldn’t we have a distributed app on the blockchain that manages all these vehicles and handles everything from reputation to payments? Ultimately, they’ll be autonomous vehicles moving around. Or blockchain Airbnb? This is all about the value going to the creators of value rather than to powerful forces that capture it. In the process, we can protect our privacy. Privacy is a basic human right, and people who say ‘It’s dead — get over it’ are deeply misinformed. It’s the foundation of a free society.

Imagine each of us having our own identity in a black box on the blockchain. When you go to do a transaction, it gives away a shred of information required to do that transaction and it collects data. You get to keep your data and monetize it if you want, or not. This could be the foundation of a whole new era whereby our basic right to privacy is protected, because identity is the foundation of freedom and it needs to be managed responsibly.”

Soon, you won’t have to imagine much. Blockchains, whether the Old World knows it or not, are here to stay. And, like Midas, they’ll turn everything they touch into gold for the many and to tungsten for the greedy few.

To drive this point home, we invite Gerald Celente to rap about why he’s betting big on the blockchains.

Read on…

Betting Big on Blockchains

By: Gerald Celente

Soon you won’t be able to see or touch your cash in the coming global cashless society.

From Bitcoin to Citicoin to SETLcoin, the world’s moving to digital currency.

Forget those vaults where cash was once stored. Digital dough will be stored and transacted electronically.

And driving this digital currency rush is blockchaining, the technology legitimizing and servicing a cashless world.

Indeed, the biggest of the too-big-to-fail banks are teaming up to harness blockchain technology to manage and settle financial transactions. And the World Economic Forum predicts that blockchaining is speeding toward a central role in the global financial system.

Already, about $20 billion in value worldwide is traded inside chains.

The technology is complex, but here’s a simple outline. A “block” is a record of a transaction between two people that’s permanently stored in a database. The database is encrypted so that the record of transactions can never be hacked or altered. A “chain” is a series of blocks stored in the time order in which they occurred. (Think of a chain as the register in your checkbook and a block as a single entry in that register.) Also, every member of a blockchain has a copy of it, so there’s no central server to be hacked.

To access your digital funds, you need a digital key that lets you into the database and a second key that opens your personal account in the database. Only when you have both can you get your hands on your money. It’s a double layer of security.

The transactions also don’t require a bank or other middleman. For example, the “TransActive Grid” in Brooklyn, New York, uses blockchains to link houses that have rooftop solar panels to their neighbors who want to buy solar electricity. The blockchain database records the transactions and handles billing.

The technology’s advanced encryption methods also have led a British cybersecurity firm to adopt blockchaining to protect data.

As cars and other objects link to the internet, the technology’s security uses will soar.

In the same way, blocking can protect records ranging from your school transcripts to your vote in the next election.

Microsoft is mulling a blockchain-based identity system that it thinks could curtail human trafficking.

The Jetcoin Institute has even suggested using blockchains to let sports fans invest in their favorite athletes and share in the sports stars’ future earnings.

Overall, more than $1.5 billion has been invested worldwide in blockchains’ possibilities so far. Major companies are betting big on blockchaining’s future.

In 2015, Virgin’s Richard Branson hosted a “blockchain summit” on his private Caribbean island. Goldman Sachs has put $50 million into startups creating their own blockchains, and IBM has announced a commitment to make blockchains a key business technology.

And more recently, the U.S. Federal Reserve, the Bank of England and the Bank of Canada all announced plans to examine the pros and cons of digital currencies.

So what does blockchain mean for you? There are several startup companies that could open up a whole new market for investors…

We’re watching this space very closely.


Gerald Celente For Laissez Faire Today