Let's face it: most people here at Steem are cryptocurrency enthusiasts. The blockchain is the foundation of this social media experiment. This raises the question: what's going to happen if crypto shoots the moon again and creates even more new-money millionaires? Are we going to buy that Lambo or actually spend the money responsibly?
New-money is notoriously bad at money management. How many once-famous rappers are now broke? What about professional sports players? What about actors? Even our president is no exception:
Trump-owned businesses declared bankruptcy no fewer than six times between 1991 and 2009.
Also on this list are Mike Tyson, Michael Vick, Curt Schilling, 50 Cent, and Nicolas Cage.
How did Nicolas Cage lose his money?
- Several supercars, including a rare Ferrari and the Shah of Iran’s Lamborghini
- Rare jewelry
- A shark
- A crocodile
- Two king cobras
- At least one dinosaur skull
- A collection of pygmy shrunken heads
- A private jet
- A pyramid tombstone in a New Orleans cemetery
Seriously... mind-blowing. It's very obvious that money goes to people's heads when they have too much of it. Hell! Money goes to people's heads even when they have none. How many acquaintances do you have that live paycheck to paycheck but still buy extremely frivolous things? I know quite a few.
We are conditioned from birth to be consumerists. If we have money, we're constantly encouraged to spend it no matter how irresponsible the purchase may be. Spending money lavishly seems to be encouraged at every turn. From the media to commercials to our very social status, the exposure to this toxic culture is inescapable.
We live in a disposable society where goods are no longer built to last. Quite the opposite, they are built to break so you have to replace the item. Even fashion was created solely for the need to get people to buy more clothes. When something is no longer functionally required, a social construct is generated to create demand.
Unfortunately, the only way for crypto to moon is to break away from this cycle of impulsive behavior. Ironically, the very thing that people want: getting rich and being able to spend money on whatever they desire, is the exact reason why the blockchain is being held back in the first place. How can we expect to usher in a superior open source collaborative economy if the members of the community refuse to correct their mistakes and diverge from the old paradigm? It's quite a conundrum.
In the end, cryptocurrency will only be truly valuable if we can come to consensus about who deserves money and who doesn't. In order to do this, an extremely corruption resistant reputation system must be put into place. This reputation system would measure an individual's fiscal responsibility. The more responsible you are, the more money you get. It is in this way that we can close the loop of corruption that so deeply wounds everyone on the entire planet; the poor most of all.
I'm not saying financially irresponsible people shouldn't get any money. Everyone deserves food, water, and shelter. However, we have to put people in check who would buy a gold-plated shark tank just because they could. The way going forward is clear, but the time it takes to get there is completely obfuscated.