I'm sure most of you freaks are somewhat abreast of the situation unfolding in France, as the middle class, represented by the Yellow Vests movement, continues to protest as the French government - as embodied by President Macron - continues to burden the citizenry with high taxes as the cost of living continues to rise. The straw that broke the camel's back was an increase in the taxes on gasoline, which incited truck drivers to revolt in mass. This comes at a time when "leaders" across Europe are pushing hard for a "United States of Europe", which would include a regional army and the ability to levy taxes across the region for the good of the Union. This seems like a logistical nightmare attempting to force differing cultures into a monocultural system under the guise of the "greater good".
The Yellow Vests movement is proving in real time that people have had enough. The French middle class, in particular, it seems, has thrown its collective hands up in disgust as the State continues to reach into their increasingly thin wallets to push the agenda of European hegemony, dictated by the elites running the European Council and the European Central Bank. I have a feeling the attempts by the elite ruling class in Europe to drive the region into one large super-state will be in vain. To me, it seems that the European Central Bank, in particular, has given the European Union a death sentence in the form of accrued debt that will either force taxes to a point where the people revolt against the notion of the hegemony (see the Yellow Vests movement) or the fat lady will start singing tunes of unsustainable debt levels that cannot be paid back, destroying confidence in the system overall. Talk about a rock and a hard place. As you can see here, the ECB's balance sheet is filling up with more and more sovereign debt belonging to the countries within the union, increasing the Bank's influence on these economies and tying the fate of the region to its ability to pay back the debt on said balance sheet.
Despite this, the people of Europe are given very few chances to voice their displeasure other than voting (lol) or hitting the streets en masse. Another peaceful option they have and is becoming increasingly more well known is Bitcoin. Bitcoin represents an option that did not previously exist for people. (You could argue gold provided this option, but I would argue Bitcoin's utility and ease of transferability far outweighs gold. To the point where the two aren't really comparable in this instance.) The phrase "vote with your wallet" is one that is often heard when people are displeased with some corporation that they perceive has wronged them. By spending their dollars elsewhere, they are able to hurt the corporation by coming at their balance sheet.
Now, citizens of the world have the option to express their displeasure with the governments and central banks who have an immense amount of influence over their lives and have wronged them in the past by buying bitcoin. Bitcoin allows you to use your hard earned money to voice your intention to exit the system that may be oppressing you. Every centralized service that tried to provide this option to the market over the years has been squashed by the State (see; Liberty Reserves & E-Gold). The State, not wanting any monetary competition, used its force to tell individuals that they were not free to make this decision for themselves. With Bitcoin, the squashing is exponentially harder to accomplish due to Bitcoin's distributed nature. To put out Bitcoin's flame, the governments of the world would have to coordinate a swift, fell swoop. This is very unlikely in my opinion. We now live in a world where the option to voice your opinion via an apolitical currency may be open to all in perpetuity. We'll see who the citizens of the world choose to voice their opinions in the years to come. We'll also be able to see if the incumbent institutions can compete in a truly free market.
Remember though, having the option to use your voice is great, but actually using it is even better.
I enjoy a nice train ride through the beautiful state of New Jersey every once in a while.