Satoshi Nakamoto intended Bitcoin to be used for online payments. But it never caught on as a mainstream payments option.
The main hurdle to widespread adoption of bitcoin-as-cash is its wild, and potentially lucrative, price changes. This roller coaster problem isn’t going to disappear. Which means the only way for payments to ever go mainstream is if the nation’s reliable payment pipelines, the ones that have knitted it together for decades, stop doing their job. Only then will second- and third-best payments rails like bitcoin be called into play.
Here’s a short story about how America’s payments infrastructure slowly implodes and bitcoin payments go mainstream.
We all know that America is ideologically divided. This turmoil has already enveloped both the traditional media and social media, with many conservative voices to Parler while liberals stick to Twitter.
Banks and payments processors have also become venues for conflict. For instance, activists have successfully pressured card processors to white supremacist book seller Counter-Currents, the Proud Boys’ and , which describes itself as pro-free speech but has high concentrations of toxicity.
Imagine a world in which these divisions were to deepen. Say that some payment processors begin to cut off all customers who are deemed too Republican. In 2023, the Wall Street Journal is de-platformed by its acquirer, the bank that hooks it into the Visa and Mastercard networks. Companies with Trump-supporting executives like and are cut off by their banks, too.