It’s not for you to decide what kind of intellectual or academic work has purpose, and what doesn’t. A free society, a society based on Enlightenment principles, is one where each person can pursue happiness according to his own ideas — which may not necessarily be capitalistic ones, and may not be in accord with yours.
I find it pretty amusing how libertarians and pro-capitalists are forever expounding on the excellence of Western civilization, when they appear to have very little idea of what that excellence is or in what it might consist. An honest reading of history reveals that the things that come to be valued and considered useful and important over centuries are not exclusively the achievements of technology or commerce. Far from it.
Bitcoin enthusiasts should maybe ask themselves what they want wealth for. What they think the ultimate purpose of Bitcoin is, or could be, or should be.
The note Satoshi Nakamoto wrote to the world in the genesis block was a clear repudiation of the bank bailouts of 2009. In developing Bitcoin, he sought an incorruptible medium of exchange. If the last eight years have taught us anything, it’s that Bitcoin has a long way to go before it fulfills his vision, if it ever does.