Decoding Destiny: Jordan Peterson on Bitcoin and the Quest for Responsibility
In a recent talk, renowned psychologist and professor, Dr. Jordan Peterson, shared his thoughts on Bitcoin and the broader concept of decentralization. Drawing on ideas from biblical stories and historical events, Dr. Peterson highlighted the importance of distributing responsibility and power to prevent tyranny. This article delves into the key points raised by Dr. Peterson during his talk, exploring how they relate to the future of technology and society.
Dr. Peterson emphasized the importance of decentralization, not as a means of distributing power but rather as a way to distribute destiny and responsibility. He argued that the true motivation behind decentralization is not to gain power over others, but to find meaning in life and avoid falling into the pathological presupposition that power is the ultimate goal.
In his talk, he stated, "The idea of decentralization is the distribution of the destiny of the individual, the responsibility of the individual, rather than the acquisition of power."
Drawing on the story of Exodus, Dr. Peterson illustrated the concept of subsidiarity – the idea that decisions should be made at the lowest and most local level possible. He used this principle to argue that a proper model of governance should be a hierarchy of responsibility, where individuals are entrusted with making decisions at local levels to prevent the concentration of power in the hands of tyrants.
Dr. Peterson then shifted his focus to Bitcoin, suggesting that its appeal lies in the desire for a decentralized system that resists the tyranny of centralized power. He acknowledged the problems with fiat currency, such as governments' ability to inflate away value, which punishes responsible citizens. However, he also raised concerns about the potential pitfalls of adopting a radical solution like Bitcoin.
In his words, "Bitcoin represents the hope that there might be a form of currency that exists outside the manipulation of the centralized system, and that could serve as a bulwark against tyranny."
Dr. Peterson highlighted that while Bitcoin is an interesting and compelling idea, its success is not guaranteed. He expressed concern that adopting Bitcoin could lead to unforeseen consequences, given that its decentralized nature would put our economic system outside the political domain. This could potentially remove the collective will of the people from influencing the monetary system.
He further stressed that adopting Bitcoin would be an experiment with unknown outcomes, and once the results of this experiment become apparent, it may be too late to change course. Despite these concerns, Dr. Peterson maintains an investment in Bitcoin out of curiosity and appreciation for its innovative potential.
During the talk, he stated, "I'm not suggesting that it's without risk or danger or that it's a certain pathway to a better future. I am suggesting that it's an experiment that's worth pursuing, and that's why I've purchased some myself."
Dr. Jordan Peterson's perspective on Bitcoin mirrors the sentiments shared by many individuals, as it encompasses a sense of curiosity and an open-minded approach towards Bicoin. At the same time, however, there is a palpable apprehension about the unknown ramifications that could arise from a successful disruption of the traditional monetary system.