‘Black Swan’ Author Courts Controversy With Provocative Take


“Black Swan” author Nassim Nicholas Taleb unleashed a barrage of criticism directed at Bitcoin, particularly targeting its commonly touted advantage: a finite supply of 21 million coins.

Taleb’s comments have created a stir within the cryptocurrency community and prompted a closer examination of Bitcoin’s intrinsic value.

On the social media platform X, Taleb minced no words, lambasting what he termed “bitdiots” – individuals who believe that the mere scarcity of an asset automatically makes it a sound investment. 

According to Taleb, the fundamental confusion lies in equating “necessary” with “sufficient.” In his view, there are countless items with restricted supplies that hold little to no value in the market. He humorously pointed out examples such as “pebbles from Skorpios, underwear worn by Churchill, books owned by Cary Grant” to illustrate his point.

Taleb’s perspective is a departure from his earlier stance as a Bitcoin supporter. He was initially intrigued by Bitcoin during the global financial crisis and the “WhatsApp Revolution” in his home country, Lebanon. However, over time, Taleb’s enthusiasm waned, leading him to view Bitcoin as neither a safe haven nor a viable asset.

Bitcoin: Significance Of Limited Supply

Bitcoin’s limited supply and digital scarcity have led many to consider it as a potential store of value, similar to gold. Some investors and institutions view it as a “digital gold” that can preserve wealth over time.

A store of value is an asset that can retain its purchasing power over extended periods. Bitcoin’s limited supply and decentralized nature appeal to those who seek an alternative to traditional stores of value, especially in times of economic uncertainty.

Bitcoin halfway to the key $27K region. Chart: TradingView.com

Market Realities: Taleb’s Unwavering Criticism

This isn’t the first time Taleb has criticized the cryptocurrency market. Earlier this week, he decried attempts to artificially bolster market prices, stating, “You may artificially prop up the price; you may paint the tape by coordinated manipulation. But in the end, the market is a market, an idiot is an idiot, & youth, inexperience, & ignorance are not virtues.”

Taleb has consistently referred to Bitcoin as “a magnet for idiots” and likened the cryptocurrency market to a “tumor.” He prophesied that it would either “kill the host or self-destroy.” These searing criticisms underscore his belief that Bitcoin’s allure is driven more by speculation and hype than any inherent value.

As the cryptocurrency community grapples with Taleb’s unorthodox perspective, it’s clear that the debate surrounding Bitcoin’s value proposition continues to evolve.

The author’s critique serves as a stark reminder that the cryptocurrency landscape is far from settled, with passionate proponents and critics offering contrasting viewpoints on its future trajectory.

Featured image from Norvan Reports

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