"It's just a gambling machine, with a lot of fraud attached to it. There is a lot of mystery, a lot of loss. Bitcoin has not produced anything."
(Warren Buffett, American businessman and fifth richest man in the world) (1)
Over the years, the rise of Bitcoin and other digital currencies has been the subject of everyone's talk, as the most important trend in the business world.
Despite the many crises that these currencies have gone through, they have recently witnessed one of the largest stages of their collapse in years.
According to Bloomberg, the massive selling wiped out $200 billion from the cryptocurrency market in just one day.
These huge losses brought to mind once again a group of the most important businessmen and economists around the world, who for many years continued to question the credibility of digital currencies in general and Bitcoin in particular, even when they are at their highest levels.
Some became wondering: Were they right, even partially?
Or has digital currencies become a reality that imposes itself on everyone, and the current decline is temporary, followed by an upcoming rise?
Bill Gates..a vacillating position
The founder of "Microsoft", the richest man on earth for several decades, the famous American billionaire and philanthropist Bill Gates, whose fortune is estimated at $ 125 billion now, his position on digital currencies in general and Bitcoin in particular can be described as a "vibrating position", or as he himself described his position. of cryptocurrencies as a neutral stance, neither supportive nor anti-cryptocurrency, but he is certainly not a fan of it.
Back in 2014, Gates' view of digital currencies tended to be supportive and optimistic, as he admired their advantages, especially with regard to fast transfer methods, as he said that Bitcoin is better than regular currencies in the speed and efficiency of transfers, especially for large money transfers.
But this view clearly changed with the advent of 2018, in an interview with CNBC, which specializes in the economy, Gates said that he already owned some bitcoins that were given to him on his birthday, but later sold them.
Gates mentioned at that time that he became not particularly interested in trading in digital currencies, after he found out that the basic idea of this currency is that you sell it to another person at a greater price, so the other person takes it and then sells it to a third person at a greater price, and so on, without meaning that it is in se anything.
In the same meeting, Gates pointed out that cryptocurrency trading is a pure example of the "Greater Fool Theory", a theory that means people rush to buy an imaginary asset of no value, relying on more investors coming later to buy at a higher price, i.e. relying On the appearance of a bigger fool always willing to pay more money, influenced by the activity of a market and not based on the intrinsic value that the investment originally provided.
Bill Gates: “Bitcoin is going up and down with a tweet from Musk and I don’t worry about him, but if you have less money than Elon Musk, then beware, you are in trouble. pic.twitter.com/z2Kqr2UjSI
— American Events (@USAlert_) February 24, 2021
However, Gates never denied in all of his statements that he remained interested in the blockchain technology behind cryptocurrencies, and that it is "really good technology" in terms of sharing databases and securing transfers.
With his reservations, his massive philanthropic foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, accepts donations and makes money transfers through a number of cryptocurrencies.
But Gates' most offensive stance on digital currencies was in a meeting with "Bloomberg" in February 2021, in which he expressed his caution about what he described as the "crazy" that occurs in the bitcoin currency, as its value can change based on a tweet by the exciting American entrepreneur. Controversy, Elon Musk, via his Twitter account.
In response to this, Gates said: "Musk has a lot of money, so I don't care if his cryptocurrency goes up or down. So I think the people who are participating in this madness should have a lot more money than they need. If you have less money. From Elon Musk, you have to be careful."
(3, 4, 5)
Warren Buffett, an outspoken runner
“If you owned all the bitcoins in the world, and you offered them to me to buy them from you for $25, I wouldn’t buy them from you.”
Warren Buffett is not an ordinary name in the world of stock investing, perhaps the most important name in the field for decades.
The 92-year-old American businessman, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Berkshire Hathaway, which invests in the shares of most companies and huge brands, who owns a fortune estimated at 110 billion dollars, which he collected in full by investing in the stock markets.
We are then talking about a seasoned investor who is skilled in the world of investment and seizing opportunities. Hundreds of books and interviews have been published about him and about business and finance.
To everyone's surprise, a person with this huge investment mindset is considered one of the most celebrity hostile to cryptocurrencies, since its appearance so far.
In one of his open meetings with investors in his giant institution, one of the attendees asked him a question about cryptocurrencies, and his answer was: “If the people present in this room own all the land in the United States, or all the apartments in the country, and they offer me to buy 1% of these properties For $25 billion, I'll write them a check immediately for the amount. But I won't do the same for cryptocurrencies, in fact I won't buy all the bitcoin in the world for just $25."
Then Buffett explained his view by differentiating between assets and bitcoin, where he said that assets such as land, real estate, farms, and stocks are productive assets that provide real value, while digital currencies are something that depends on someone's impulse to buy from you, and then sell to someone else, without having any intrinsic value. .
Buffett shares this view with Bill Gates, but he is apparently more anti-Bitcoin.
One of his most hostile statements against digital currencies was what he made in a press interview with CNBC in 2018, where he stressed that digital currencies will end badly, and that even if their rise continues during the next five or ten years, he remains certain of one thing, which is It does not produce anything.
Buffett explained that people are attracted to investing in them by saying that people are attracted to anything "magical".
Jamie Damon.. a lot of hate
We are talking about one of the fiercest haters of cryptocurrency, perhaps so exaggerated that he refuses to call it “currency.”
Jamie Dimon, an American businessman with an estimated fortune of $1.8 billion, is a veteran banker who serves as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of JPMorgan, which is one of the 4 largest American banks, and has been ranked several times among the 100 most influential people in different years.
Dimon took over as CEO of the international investment bank "JP Morgan" in 2005, and is until now considered an icon in the banking and investment sector.
In 2015, his first discussion of Bitcoin appeared, and this year he stated clearly: “No government will accept the support of a cryptocurrency that moves across borders and has no control over it, it cannot happen.”
Of course it turned out to him that he was wrong.
In 2017, Dimon came back again with a controversial statement he made in the middle of a conference, in which he described digital currencies as a fraud (Fraud), saying that the inevitable end of Bitcoin would be bad, and even Dimon exaggerated his hostility to digital currencies when he threatened employees at his giant banking institution that they They should be laid off from their jobs if it is proven that they are trading cryptocurrencies, because they would be “stupid” as he puts it.
Later, with the successes of cryptocurrencies in the following years, Dimon softened his attack, declaring that the blockchain technology underlying cryptocurrencies was promising.
Ironically, in 2019 JPMorgan launched its own digital currency called JPM.
However, Dimon has continued to make his anti-crypto statements that they will always be considered “worthless” despite the efficiency of the blockchain technology.
Alwaleed bin Talal.. Enron under construction
Alwaleed bin Talal
Although he does not have multiple statements of support or rejection of digital currencies like his predecessors, Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal bin Abdulaziz, founder and owner of Kingdom Holding Company, which invests in a large number of companies and brands, has previously shown a conservative attitude towards digital currencies Years ago.
In his interview with CNBC, Prince Alwaleed said of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies: “It doesn't make sense. This thing is not regulated, not controlled, not censored. I simply don't believe this thing called Bitcoin, and I think it's a bubble that will burst. Someday. I think it's a new Enron under construction."
In his statement, the prince intended to refer to the giant American energy company "Enron", which was bankrupt in 2001 in the biggest financial scandal for many years, as its value was constantly rising in the stock market by artificially inflating its profits and hiding its losses, through the use of fictional companies and fraud. Accounts with the aim of enhancing their value in the stock exchange, which led to its complete collapse later.
Nouriel Roubini.. the mother of bubbles
“Bitcoin is the mother and father of all kinds of fraud and bubbles.”
The name Nouriel Roubini may not be well known in the media, but it is certainly well known in the corridors of economists.
Roubini is an Iranian-American economist and professor of economics at New York University.
Unlike other economists who were concerned about digital currencies, but praised blockchain technology, Norell's attack included both, digital currencies and the blockchain technology that produced them, as he described it more than once as the most celebrated technology, although it is the least useful technology at all.
Norell always describes digital currencies as mere price manipulation, and tampering with hopes of a quick get-rich-quick that is not based on any intrinsic value of these currencies, and that it only depends entirely on “pump and dump” patterns and exploits them to harvest more traders.
In the end, crypto haters today are certainly few if compared to the proponents, but they are big names in the business and financial world, and their arguments to question their credibility cannot be ignored.
Some things related to Bitcoin will remain closely related, such as its decentralization and lack of supervision and the way value is created in it, will continue to irritate some, and perhaps these and other reasons were the motivation behind some governments taking measures to regulate digital currencies and supervise their trading.
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Greater Fool Theory
Warren Buffett Says He Wouldn't Take All the Bitcoin in the World for $25
Warren Buffett on buying bitcoin: 'That is not investing'
Jamie Dimon says he no longer uses the word “cryptocurrency”
Prince Alwaleed says bitcoin will implode: 'Enron in the making'
What Are Nouriel Roubini's Thoughts on Crypto Right Now?