“Make War Expensive Again” is a Bitcoin slogan proposed in a recent tweet by Adam Ortolf from Upstream Data. He maintained that war has become “100% free (+ insanely profitable)” due to governments’ ability to create billions of dollars at will for military spending.
Yet, could a transition to Bitcoin—a form of hard money—truly render war unaffordable? The concept certainly isn’t new, but it is a fascinating debate. Back in 2014, Roger Ver stated
“Every time you use Bitcoin, you are helping to undermine the war machines around the world, and the power of those who would use violence to control others.”
Bitcoin vs. War
Bitcoin and its proponents have long argued that the digital currency could usher in a new era of sound money. Unlike traditional fiat currencies, which are prone to inflation and manipulation by central banks, Bitcoin has a fixed supply of 21 million coins, ensuring its scarcity. In theory, this limited supply could make Bitcoin less susceptible to currency debasement and prompt governments to adopt more fiscally-responsible behavior.
How does this relate to war? Historically, wars have been financed through inflationary mechanisms, such as printing money. This practice enables governments to fund military operations without immediate financial consequences. Instead, costs are passed on to citizens through higher prices and a weaker currency. Adopting Bitcoin or other hard currencies could restrict this seemingly endless spending capability.
As Saifedean Ammous wrote in his infamous book, The Bitcoin Standard,
“For as long as the government could print more money and have that money accepted by its citizens and foreigners, it could keep financing the war.”
It is a feasible assumption that limiting governments’ finances could deter countries from engaging in large-scale military interventions. However, when facing the inability to inflate war-related debts, nations might resort to alternative strategies, including diplomacy and other non-combat measures, to resolve disputes.
In his book Soft War, U.S. Space Force Major Jason Lowery goes as far as to say the U.S. should stockpile Bitcoin as Bitcoin mining will be the battleground of the future. He called Bitcoin
“A national strategic imperative that the U.S. should support and adopt as quickly as possible, else it risks losing its lead as a global superpower in the 21st century.”
A nonviolent revolution
In response to Ortolf, Taiwandan, an Advisor to El Salvador’s…
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