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🗺 Pax Bitcoiniana: After The Last Country on Earth

"Islands in the web" and the 21st century nation-state.

Bitcoin was not the 1st implementation of electronic cash. All its relevant predecessor suffered some form of judicial intervention.

🌎 1. Mundi Map: Consolidation & Fragmentation

An interactive map of territories under dispute in 2019 showing China on the top of the list of "troubling neighbours" to have.
At least in Europe, the long term trend in the early 2000 millenium (previous ~150 years) was not of consolidation, but rather fragmentation.

👣 2. Technology & War: Footprints on the Map

Number of national cells in Europe. Aggregated in quarter centuries (25 years). Data is absent for the interval 1850–1900.
A decline in the "battle death rate" denounces: from the early 1900s onwards, war became more and more hideous.

🏰 3. State, Property & Countries as Bellic Unions

Photo by Nikita Andreev (Unsplash).
The most longeve states were not the most militarised ones, neither the less. Data from 2019.
Foto por Richard Payette (Unsplash).

🔐 4. Asymmetric Crypto & Immutable Memories: Enter the New State

  • Thou shall agree on the rules;
  • Thou shall be free to join and leave.
Visualising Bitcoin's Social Contrat. Via Hasu.

⚔ 5. Cypherpunk Ethnicity

Some people tattooed an RSA implementation in the 90s, affronting the prohibition to “export munition”.

🏴 6. Islands in the Web, Free Enclaves & Temporary Autonomous Zones

Hakim Bey's TAZs. By Andrew Robinson (CeaseFire).

“In the end, a TAZ is self evident. If the term got used, it'd be comprehended easily… comprehended in action”. — Hakim Bey, 1985

💉 7. People: The Running Blood of Nations

What social disturb looked like, in 2019 (Hong Kong).

“As cybercommerce begins, it will lead inevitably to cybermoney. This new form of money will reset the odds, reducing the capacity of the world’s nation states to determine who becomes a Sovereign Individual” — Davidson & Rees-Mogg, The Sovereign Individual, 1997.

🗺 8. What did it mean "to be a country"?

Inter-national unrest was controlled, but intra-national civil conflict was on the rise in the 20th and 21st centuries.
  • a defined territory;
  • a permanent population;
  • a functional form of governance;
  • the ability to enter relationships with other States.

"[Countries are] no more than a product of people's imagination" — president of Liberland, a semiautonomous island between Croatia and Serbia, 2018

👑 9. Bitcoin as a Sovereign State

  • To have a defined territory: 21M was always the uncrossable frontier— within it, bitcoin may be moved freely. The historical registry — or map — of Bitcoin is manifested physically in digital memory, whose actual location is irrelevant. Bitcoin's territory is a rare case of one that does not conflict with borders of neighbouring countries.
  • To have a permanent population: there was never an official census, but never an official doubt on a permanent population (hodlers) too.
  • To have a functional government: Nakamoto consensus and the social contract.
  • To be able to enter relationships with other States: nobody ever impeded other States from trying to mine or engage in Bitcoinomics.
Bitcoin overlaid on the old world map: a snapshot of 2019.

⚖ 10. The Great Migration

One of these groups of folks was "sovereign", the other wasn't. Can you guess which is which?
Mundi Map according to all the world’s separatisms in the 2010s.
Entrance, corridors and perimeters of early Bitcoin datacenters, around which the first citadels formed.
The President of the US and 20 representatives of the major technology companies, in the 2010s. At the time, more than 50% of the table already held Bitcoin.
Bitcoin's defense budget VS. that of the most powerful country in the early 2000s. Beware: the 2 axis are in different scales — it would take another decade for Bitcoin to catch up.

🤝 11. Pax Bitcoiniana

“My bitcoin and I”. Via Josh Riemer (Unsplash)
Guerrilla Bitcoin marketing in the 2010s.
Primitive depictions of Bitcoin citadels.


  1. How Cryptography Redefines Private Property (Hugo Nguyen).
  2. Understanding the Ethics of Bitcoin Through the Ideas of 19th Century Thinker George Simmel (David Auerbach).
  3. Bitcoin Will Be Attacked (Zain Allarakhia).
  4. What Is It Like to Be a Bitcoin (Nic Carter).
  5. Who Controls Bitcoin Core (Jameson Lopp).
  6. To Be a UX Designer For The Law (Peter Van Valkenburgh).
  7. Property and Ownership (Stanford Encyclopaedia of Philosophy).
  8. Lessons from International Law: The Global Governance Model & Its Takeaways as Applied to Crypto (Katherine Wu).
  9. Unpacking Bitcoin’s Social Contract (Hasu).
  10. Ostracism, Voice and Exit: The Biology Of Social Participation (Roger Masters).
  11. Big Tech’s problem is Big, not Tech (Cory Doctorow).
  12. Collectivist Economic Planning (Friedrich A. Hayek).
  13. The BitLicense Is a Bad Idea That Must Die (Beautyton).
  14. Exit and Freedom (Nick Szabo).
  15. Bitcoin's Department of Defense (Anthony Pompliano).
  16. Inter-State, Intra-State, and Extra-State Wars: A Comprehensive Look at Their Distribution over Time, 1816–1997 (Meredith Sarkees, Frank Wayman & David Singer, 2003).
  17. The Waning of War is Real (Bethany Lacina & Nils Petter Gleditsch, 2013).
  18. Bitcoin Miners Beware: Invalid Blocks Need Not Apply (StopAndDecrypt).
  19. A Most Peaceful Revolution (Nic Carter).
  20. Data From 30 Countries Show That Belief in a Zero-Sum Game Is Related to Military Expenditure and Low Civil Liberties (Różycka-Tran, Jurek, Olech, Piotrowski & Żemojtel-Piotrowska, 2018).




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