As a continuation on from the last post about the power consumption of mining Bitcoin, I think it would be good to have a look at some other aspects of this in regards to energy usage.
Firstly, regardless of whether someone can justify the energy expenditure on Bitcoin or not, there are hundreds of other areas where the energy used is far more harmful for the earth and for our own well-being. When it comes to resources, how they are spent matters a great deal, which is something that not many people seem t consider when they focus on one aspect, like Bitcoin mining.
For example, how much energy does it cost to create a Tesla and the battery - and how much does it cost to create a Tomahawk missile? The cost of each missile is over 1.5M. What about a tank? An aircraft carrier? People justify the expenditure on these things so they can feel safe or, they just don't care enough to do anything serious about it, even though they don't like it.
The way we spend our time matters too. It is a resource that we can use to do all kinds of things, whether in our best interest or in our worst and it seems that a lot of what we do has very little benefit for us and a lot of where the energy is spent by those who should have our best interests at their core, use it in their best interest.
The economy is fundamentally broken in many ways, but at the crux of it, it is because so few people have control over the way the resources are used. Money is a resource that has no intrinsic value other than being able to be used to purchase activity, whether in the form of goods or services. What this means is that the most important factor of money is how it is used, but because most of the wealth is in so few hands and those hands are for more homogenous than representative of the rest of the population, a lot of the wealth is used in ways that are detrimental to our experience, but increase the power and control of those who already have it.
As I said to my friend, the only way I see the economy improving is to replace the fundamental structure of it with one where the power is distributed very widely and in a way that makes it very hard to consolidate it again into the hands of the few. This means that the ability to control the value has to not only be spread, but what is valuable has to be able to change form at the behest of the people.
We saw this during the Steem takeover, where a community of users were able to decide to no longer take part in the economy and instead, start their own. Even as we speak, we see that while Hive is looking for ways to create a peg, the same people who caused the fissure in the community are greedily raping it, pushing the value up so they can extract it for themselves - they are the government and the corporation rolled into one and are exhibiting the predictable behaviors of that animal. Those others who are taking part there hoping for value from the governing lords, are doing it for the same greedy reasons and no matter what they say, they are no better than the governments they complain about in the global economy.
As said, how matters a great deal in regards to resource usage, but why matters as well. Energy used to improve and innovate value adding technology like better energy generation, better battery storage, improved medical equipment or a better economic system is energy well spent - whereas energy spent to maintain a broken status quo is energy misused, even if it generates a lot more money. The reason is that money is nonsense until applied, but if the most money is to be made in harmful activity or the process of making money itself, its capabilities are wasted - wasted potential, wasted energy.
Why make money if it is used to purchase harmful goods and services? This is the problem with it being in the hands of the few, as they tend to purchase in places where the average person can't touch it, making it much like a valueless circlejerk. If that same value was held in and under the control of many participants with a very wide diversity, it would be very hard to make very large purchases (like going to war) unless it really was beneficial for a large number of stakeholders. Who is going to use their wallet to buy the tanks, when the opportunity cost is to have a solar power roof and the car it can power?
Energy expenditure is very important since to date, we do not have totally clean and renewable energy sources, but what is most important is how that is being used. I suspect that a great deal of the energy is spent on totally useless activity, as much of what we do for jobs is unnecessary anyway. While many people spend their potential energy in front of Netflix and Facebook, many of the people in crypto are using their energy in an attempt to save the world, even if they do not recognize exactly how yet.
We have the ability to reorganize the control of the resources of earth to improve our own well-being and to ensure that we don't easily end up in the same clusterfuck of an economy we have now. Worth the energy?
[ Gen1: Hive ]
An important comment addition to consider from @edicted on my last post.
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