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Elizabeth Warren Does Not Speak for the Left on Crypto

Crypto enthusiasts are typically right-wing libertarians. It’s obvious. Its worldview resembles crypto. Individual liberty and limited government economic involvement.

Elizabeth Warren, a Massachusetts senator, has been crypto’s most ardent foe. She fought to limit its use for years. Crypto “has provided chances to swindle investors, support criminals and worsen the environment crisis,” she claimed.Lawmakers and federal authorities can’t hide from crypto’s threats. Never.”

She has been leading a bipartisan push to strictly regulate the technology for months. Crypto proponents say it violates privacy.

Before her 2020 presidential campaign, Warren was a popular Leftist. Her 2012 Senate race garnered national attention. She’s a generation’s most progressive politician, along with Bernie Sanders. Warren and others want government to play a bigger role in the economy to fight poverty, income inequality, climate change, and prejudice.

The Left may not follow Warren. CoinDesk Research found that crypto was more ideologically varied than expected in 2018. The 1,200 respondents were 8% anarcho-capitalists, 24% libertarians, 21% conservatives, 9% centrists, 27% liberals, 9% socialists, and 3% nihilists.

Bitcoiners skewed Right, whereas Ethereans skewed Left. Ripple is “centerist.” Most anarcho-capitalists—those who want to abolish the state—lived on Monero. Unsurprising.

Five years is a long time in crypto, so is this data relevant? Yet, as use has increased, its users have likely become more like the rest of the population. Not less.

Most Lefties use it for speculative investing, according to a 2020 Financial Conduct Authority survey. Is crypto conservative? “For the most part, crypto is dominated by right-wing libertarian ideology and speculation,” argues the Blockchain Socialist. “Is that the only way to use the technology? I don’t think so, and there have been progressive uses of the technology that don’t follow right-libertarian logic.”

According to the 2018 study, the crypto community is liberal, socialist, and progressive. They’re often signposted, though. Jason Maier, The Progressive Bitcoiner, wrote “The Progressive Argument for Bitcoin” because he felt the need to. According to his website, “he didn’t believe like Progressive individuals had a home within the Bitcoin community.”

“Even worse, he observed his Liberal pals were being misinformed about Bitcoin by the media and some Liberal politicians.” Elizabeth Warren doesn’t help.

Bitcoin doesn’t merely express anti-government sentiment. Anti-corporation is also possible. The Web3 paradigm criticizes Web2 internet corporations for profiting off our data. Attacks on that system are rarely right-wing.

“In general, I’d say most people attracted to crypto are anti-establishment first and foremost, but many of these people are encouraged to accept correct libertarian narratives about money, the economics, politics, etc.,” says The Blockchain Socialist. “Even though often if you were to sit down with them and truly inquire about their principles, why they are unsatisfied with the present quo, and what their ideal society looks like, they would contradict the libertarian narrative.”

The late 20th century hacktivist movement cypherpunks had varied ideologies. Without their activism, the internet would be even more dismal.

The open source development side of crypto draws left-leaning folks. Yet, they were a minority.”

Note that Leftist aims might include freedom, individual liberty, and atomization. Before conservatives championed anti-censorship, leftists did. Indeed, left-libertarianism exists. It’s less famous than its right-wing cousin.

One left-libertarian writer tells BeInCrypto that the libertarian movement has progressive roots. He calls it “pre-welfare state forms of self-organization such as cooperatives.” A political tradition Elizabeth Warren respects.

“Similarly, today’s crypto networks might be understood as forms of mutual learning and empowerment, members assisting each other rather than dog-eat-dog anarcho-capitalism. As recent Uniswap governance concerns with venture capital company a16z indicate, the decentralization inherent in the code doesn’t automatically extend to who runs a crypto platform.”


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