Currency encourages accessibility, transparency, privacy, and free markets.
As a result of China’s anti-free market mentality, the United States now has an economic opportunity in financial technology, which we must seize.
China stepped up its war on economic liberty in September, when it banned all cryptocurrency transactions. This is hardly surprising for one of the world’s most authoritarian states. Since 2013, China has waged a campaign against cryptocurrency, ranging from prohibiting third-party vendors from accepting cryptocurrency payments to outright prohibiting bitcoin mining. China’s opposition to cryptocurrency is unsurprising, as cryptocurrency represents the free and open pursuit of one’s financial future, a fundamental American value.
Cryptocurrency promotes transparency, openness, privacy, and free markets. At its heart, cryptocurrency relies on blockchain technology to decentralise transaction validation, significantly reducing fraud. For instance, it’s exceedingly difficult to determine the precise location of the $20 bill in your wallet once it departed the United States mint. However, through the use of blockchain technology, digital currencies can be tracked from their inception to your digital wallet.
As Congress and regulators consider establishing federal regulations for cryptocurrency, the question remains: Will we follow China’s lead or will we promote American values by embracing this cutting-edge financial technology?
China accomplished two goals by declaring all activities involving virtual currencies to be illegal. To begin, China has demonstrated once again that it is unconcerned with the ideals upon which crypto is built. They are purely concerned with authoritarian rule. Second, China created enormous opportunities for the United States. America is at a crossroads, just as the previous crypto mining ban resulted in a boom in job creation and economic development. We can either take the reins of finance in the future or allow other countries to catch up with us.
Cryptocurrencies and blockchains are based on the fundamental American value of free enterprise. This technology has the potential to precipitate a financial revolution by integrating innovations into the global economic fabric. To foster access and economic activity, America must lead the world in innovation and foster a risk-taking environment. America will always defeat China’s authoritarian, communist system if we adhere to our open market principles.
Regrettably, influential voices in the United States have indicated a willingness to follow the Chinese lead. In July, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell testified before the House Financial Services Committee that if the Fed created a Central Bank Digital Currency, “there would be no need for stablecoins or cryptocurrencies if there were a digital US currency.” Thankfully, after I pressed him for clarification on September 30th, he retracted these comments. Similarly, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chairman Gary Gensler expressed support for a greater federal role in crypto regulation, but then reversed course after I asked him to confirm his position on October 5th.
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