Colson: On cryptocurrency, meltdowns and Donald J. Trump

John Colson
Courtesy photo

Sometimes, as I peruse headlines, news stories and other sources for my punditry, I am struck by the synchronicity of things.

For example, I have been watching with bemusement as Donald Trump, our erstwhile excuse for a president, and cryptocurrency, the alternative to regular old money that came into being after the 2008 worldwide financial meltdown, both appear to be having meltdowns of their own.

I should note, before going further, that I have only a vague understanding about cryptocurrency and its ramifications, and that I have absolutely no understanding of whatever it is that goes on inside the brain pan of Trump.

But it sure is amusing to watch them both crash and burn.

At least I’ve been hoping that’s what happening in both cases, though both have shown signs of continued life.

Trump, as most already know, is having fits of frenzy about the much-ballyhooed nonappearance of the predicted “HUGE red wave” that was supposed to put Democrats permanently in a self-created political black hole from which they — like light beams, lost keys and just about everything that falls into a black hole — might never emerge.

Instead, the Dems appear to have held off the worst of the predicted red tsunami by a combination of hard work among their volunteer corps and a growing perception that even some Republican voters are getting tired of the Trump circus.

Control of the U.S. Senate seems to be a done deal for the Dems, thanks to what some say are miraculous wins in Arizona and Nevada.

Control of the U.S. House of Representatives remains in limbo, though, as incredibly tight races in various parts of the nation continue to be counted.

Even our own little corner of MAGA country, the 3rd Congressional District encompassing the Western Slope of the Colorado Rockies and stretching out to Pueblo on the Front Range, seems headed for a recount due to the tight-numbers game being played out across 27 counties.

I can only hope that Aspen’s own challenger for the CD3 seat, Democrat Adam Frisch, will win in the end, putting the incumbent, Trump sycophant Lauren Boebert, in her place alongside Trump on the trash heap of political history.

If those two ever got together for a losers’ ball, the resulting conflagration of self-pity, self-serving lies and bloated outbursts of entitlement-spawned viciousness would be unbearable if it weren’t so delicious.

But, as Frisch himself said about the election outcome, we’ll just have to wait until Friday to learn who the winner is in CD3.

So, what about the crypto-meltdown?

Well, it’s like this: Last week one of the biggest cyrpto exchanges, FTX, declared bankruptcy following statements from its rival crypto exchange, Binance, questioning the fiscal stability of the FTX.

It seems the crypto world is a little touchy about rumors of instability, and the Binance statements prompted a run on the FTX deposits by investors hoping to save what they could if FTX went belly-up.

For a medium of exchange invented as an end-run around traditional currencies, this whole crypto thing has always seemed shaky to me, and this latest development confirms my suspicions.

It’s typical of our immediate-gratification society, really — a new kind of money shows up and everybody jumps on the gravy train to get rich quick. When things get sketchy, as they always do in financial markets, people holding crypto investments start panicking, crashes happen, and the rest of us wonder why anyone fell for the scam in the first place.

Of course, all money is a scam of one sort or another, a way for certain acquisitive types to gain power over their neighbors, but the existing financial structure of the planet has been a long time in the making. So it should not surprise anyone that some racy upstart currency exchange should run into trouble, quickly and often.

Just like certain upstart politicians (see above) who got into the game based on bluster and lies, and suddenly find themselves facing the possibility of complete irrelevance, at best, and (for one of them) possibly criminal charges.

And so it goes, as one of my favorite authors, Kurt Vonnegut, liked to remark when he arrived at the end of a provocative or fruitful line of thought.

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