Review of The Fiat Standard. Bitcoin Tech Talk #268
Saifedean Ammous just published a followup to his popular book on Bitcoin: The Fiat Standard. Having read the book, this is my attempt at giving you an overview so you can decide for yourself whether it’s worth picking up. The book is split into three major parts: Fiat Money, Fiat Life and Fiat Liquidator.
The first part of the book is about the current system, Fiat Money. It goes through why we have the financial system that we have today. Saifedean continues in the tradition of Austrian economists by interpreting historical events in light of economic forces and motivations, starting with the advent of Central Banking, the Bank of England. He explains how the Bank of England used its lending power to take value from the people who used its currency, particularly in the colonies. He’s surprisingly sympathetic to why Central Banks centralized gold which eventually led to fiat money. As he explains, gold’s salability across space is made much easier through the use of debt instruments. I learned a lot about how controlling the monetary network became such a desirable prize for sovereigns and the struggle that ensued.