Stark warning for crypto fans – ‘it’ll all be worth zero’
John Reed Stark, who served for 20 years with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) – 11 of which as head of its Office for Internet Enforcement – used his latest swipe at BTC to carry a foreboding message that crypto will, without warning, have a value of zero. Mr Stark, who has repeatedly railed against crypto since leaving office, regularly writes articles and essays on why he sides with entrepreneur Warren Buffet in a shared dislike of currencies they both label as “akin to rat poison”.
But in his latest article, for Law360,
crypto naysayer Mr Stark vents his most furious views yet as he brands initial exchange offering (IEOs) as “predators” before promising the SEC would soon be clamping down on the “unregulated crypto-casino fundraising mutations”.
“They are an enticing medium for fraud, manipulation, insider
trading, hacking and a broad range of chicanery,” he slammed.
“IEOs represent yet another blatant attempt to hijack a similar-sounding acronym — IPO — in an effort to lure investors seeking to get rich quick. However, just like ICOs, the IEO has not a single element in common with the IPO (other than the first and last letters of its acronym).”
The bulk of his ire, though, is reserved for bitcoin itself, which he claims has no real world use other than to facilitate crime.
“Much of bitcoin’s value, outside of mere speculation, is derived solely from its ability to facilitate criminal activity,” he argues.
“Need a fake ID, bottle of opiates, a cache of credit card numbers, or a thousand Social Security numbers? Need a way to collect a ransomware payment? Need to fund terrorist-related activities? Need to hire a hitman?
“Cryptocurrencies like bitcoin have become the payment of choice for these, and a slew of other, criminal enterprises.”
His closing remarks, however, will send a chill down the spine of would-be crypto investors.
“People are going to wake up one day and not find that the value of their BTC investment is diminishing, but that it is zero,” he warns.
“One moment you will be looking at US$8,000 per coin, the next, global trading will be suspended. The true market of BTC is zero. When it’s stopped, it will just end.
“As soon as a system of such kind starts to move outside of the legal constructions that allow it to operate, it stands on a foundation of watered sand and will eventually collapse.
“When it collapses, it can never be recovered.”