2014-07-10

The World's First Political Bitcoin Candidate – All Politics Is Global

All politics is local, said U.S. Speaker of the House, Tip O’Neill. Maybe he was right when he said it – in 1935 – but he’s wrong today. I’m running for Parliament on the idea that all politics is global.

The world is getting connected in an unprecedented way. Bitcoin is a symbol of this development, and could also play a huge part in changing how the world works.

To promote the spreading of Bitcoin and increase the awareness of new political challenges, I will – as the first political candidate in the world – only accept campaign donations in bitcoin.

If you want to support my campaign, you can’t give me dollars, euros or Swedish kronor, you must donate in bitcoins.

I will use your donation to fund my campaign for Parliament in the Swedish elections that take place September 14th. If I get elected I will work for this in Parliament:

– Resist knee-jerk regulation of Bitcoin, other digital currencies, and disruptive innovation in general.
– Continue the education reforms in Sweden.
– Help develop a tax system that promotes fast growing, innovating companies.
– Defend your right to privacy.

DONATE BITCOINS

Send Bitcoins to this address: 11gpD8hGpDB7KndXb1NJs2ggcYmAgvEX8

Or scan the QR-code below to get the address.

If you haven't used bitcoins or don't know how to donate, check out this link.

Donations from countries other than Sweden are allowed and most welcome.

The maximum allowed amount for natural persons (regular people) is the equivalent of 20,000 SEK (about 4.70 BTC, 2,900 U.S. dollars, or 2,150 euro).

The maximum allowed amount for juridical persons (an organization, a company, etc.) is the equivalent of 10,000 SEK (about 2.35 BTC, 1,450 U.S. dollars, or 1,085 euro).

Please also send me an email about your donation: mathias.sundin[at]gmail.com.

(It would be nice to beat potato salad guy :)

Below I will tell you what Bitcoin is, what possibilities this will bring, and what political challenges will need to be handled.

WHAT IS BITCOIN?

Personally, at first, I only saw the negative headlines about Bitcoin and thought it was some sort of unserious speculation bubble. Then I read up on it and understood that it has the potential to change the world. (Or, really, it was when I realised that I could order pizza and pay in bitcoin).

“Internet was a new way to transfer data. Bitcoin is a new way to transfer money,” says Marc Andreessen, the founder of Netscape, the world’s first popular web browser. As a venture capitalist he now invests millions of dollars in Bitcoin companies. He thinks Bitcoin – or this kind of digital currency and cryptographic platform – is as important as the creation of the personal computer and the Internet.

It’s the digital currency, bitcoin, that has received all the attention and the headlines. But Bitcoin, with a capital B, is a platform that services can be built upon. Digital contracts, digital keys, digital insurances, digital stocks, and so on.

“Bitcoin is a protocol for exchanging value over the Internet without an intermediary”, writes professional services firm Deloitte in an analysis.

Let me give you an example.

Say that you are buying a car from another private citizen. In the future, with your smartphones, you and the seller can sign a digital contract. When both have signed, the agreed-upon money will be transferred from your account to the seller's. Then the digital evidence of the ownership of the car will transfer to you, along with the digital key to unlock and start the car. It’s impossible for the seller to keep a copy of the key, and also impossible to claim that he still owns the car. If there is a dispute, it’s easy to check the contract, the transferring of money and the ownership.

This solves the problem with trust. You don’t have to trust the seller. He can’t grab your check or bag of cash and run away with it. You don’t need to first transfer the money and hope he will keep his end of the deal. When you both have signed the digital contract, the rest of the transaction is done. And the seller of course doesn’t need to trust the buyer. If the money isn’t transferred after the contract is signed, nothing more will happen. The ownership of the car will not transfer and he will keep the key.

Bitcoin has, for the first time, solved the problem with trust in the digitized world.

CONNECTING PEOPLE

Until the iPhone happened, Nokia was the largest mobile phone company in the world. Connecting people was their slogan. They failed to adapt to smartphones in time and the mobile phone part of the company has now been sold to Microsoft. That’s ironic, because connecting people is just what the smartphones are doing.

Today every fifth person in the world has a smartphone. More people own a smartphone than a PC. In just three years half the world population will have a smartphone. The information you twenty years ago had to go to a library to get, half the world population will then have in their pockets.

An entrepreneur who develops a software could potentially reach all these billions of people, and with a simple money transferring system, like Bitcoin, he or she will be able to charge for it easier.

ALL POLITICS IS GLOBAL

When three or four billion people are connected, think of all the different ideas and perspectives that come together. Try to imagine all the innovation that will come from this.

In politics today there is a lot of talk about how we will “create innovation.” People are worried we will not innovate enough. That is not a problem. The real problem will be to handle all the new innovation. Because a lot of this innovation will be disruptive.

The music industry tried to chase down their customers with help of the police, until Spotify came around.

Bitcoin has the potential to be a really disruptive innovation. Money is today the biggest of businesses and a business that governments are deeply involved with, as they control the production of money and also regulate the financial institutions. If people start using a currency not controlled by government and one which also takes away one of the core businesses of the financial world, there will be fighting.

It is of the utmost importance that we send people to Parliament that understand what is happening, and don’t react with sweeping knee-jerk regulations or an outright ban of digital currencies altogether.

If regulation is needed, we will have to take a very balanced approach and not rush into anything.

HOW DOES BITCOIN WORK?

I thought long and hard how to explain how Bitcoin works, but then I realized that it's not important. It’s not important how the internet works or how the smartphones work. At least not for most people. What’s important is what can be done with it, which is what I have tried to describe above.

But if you are really interested, here are a couple of links that explain how Bitcoin works:

Bitcoin.org: https://bitcoin.org/en/
Deloitte analysis: http://dupress.com/articles/bitcoin-fact-fiction-future/
The original paper: https://bitcoin.org/bitcoin.pdf 

WHY ALL THE NEGATIVE HEADLINES?

The main reason for all the headlines is the volatility of bitcoin. The number of users are growing fast – around 3-5 million people today – and the value of all bitcoins is around 7-8 billion dollars. But that is little compared to other currencies, and as a consequence the value of a bitcoin has gone up and down a lot.

Also, some of the services have been unstable and unserious. That’s usually the case with some new innovation until some sort of standard emerges or bigger actors get onboard. This it what we now are seeing, especially in Silicon Valley, where millions of dollars are being invested in Bitcoin companies.

There has also been some criminals using bitcoin to launder money. Actually, this will be harder with bitcoin than most other currencies, because bitcoin is only semi-anonymous.

The biggest problem for bitcoin right now is confidence. If businesses and consumers don’t have confidence in bitcoin, it can never develop into its full potential. If the negative takes over, the use of bitcoin will not spread and the use of the platform will not grow enough. But then, probably, some other platform based on the same sort of technology will take its place.

WHO AM I?

I’m 36 years old and currently the Deputy Mayor of Norrköping, running to be a Member of Parliament representing my county, Östergötland, for Folkpartiet, a liberal center-right party.

I was an MP in 2012, when our current MP was on parental leave (yep, that’s how it works here). Then I voted against the implementation of the EU's data retention law in Sweden, and also against the expansion of the mass surveillance law.

This is what I will work for in Parliament:

– Resist knee-jerk regulation of Bitcoin, other digital currencies, and disruptive innovation in general.
– Continue the education reforms in Sweden.
– Help develop a tax system that promotes fast growing, innovating companies.
– Defend your right to privacy.

DONATE

Send the Bitcoins to this adress: 11gpD8hGpDB7KndXb1NJs2ggcYmAgvEX8

Or scan the QR-code below to get the address.


If you haven't used bitcoins or don't know how to donate, check out this link.

Donations from countries other than Sweden are allowed and most welcome.

The maximum allowed amount for natural persons (regular people) is the equivalent of 20,000 SEK (about 4.70 BTC, 2,900 U.S. dollars, or 2,170 euro). Your name will be anonymous, but the donation itself will be public.

The maximum allowed amount for juridical persons (an organization, a company, etc.) is the equivalent of 10,000 SEK (about 2.35 BTC, 1,450 U.S. dollars, or 1,085 euro). The name will be anonymous, but the donation itself will be public.

If you want me to know you sent me an donation, send me an email: mathias.sundin[at]gmail.com.

Current exchange rates: http://preev.com/

Bitcoin to Swedish krona (SEK): http://preev.com/btc/sek

In Swedish: Kolla in utmärkta Bitcoin.se för information hur du kommer igång med bitcoin. Jag använder BitStamp, som fungerar bra för EU-medborgare.

6 kommentarer:

Christian Ander sa...

You can donate Bitcoin to all mayor political parties in Sweden, read more: http://www.bitcoinvalet.se/

johny strong sa...

Hello your blog is sharing great information. bitnews providing best τι ειναι το bitcoin in Greece.Thanks for share this blog.



Mark J. Guillen sa...

This is nice, now Bitcoin can also be donated… Easiest way until now to help others.

Blogger sa...

Over at Moon Bitcoin you can get free satoshis. 163 sat. every 1 hour.

Blogger sa...

In my opinion, the ultimate Bitcoin exchange company is YoBit.

Stefan sa...

I wish you good luck with the campaign! I saw you were mentioned on Bitcoingg.com as well!