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Erik Voorhees: My End Goal for Bitcoin Is the Complete Abandonment of Fiat Currency

Published on August 19th, 2015 by kyletorpey

Shapeshift.io CEO Erik Voorhees participated in a fireside chat with Decentralized Applications Fund Managing Director David Johnston at the Texas Bitcoin Conference in late March. During this conversation, Voorhees revealed his overall goal for Bitcoin’s eventual level of success. Some say that Bitcoin only needs to keep existing on a daily basis for it to succeed over the long term, but Voorhees has larger ambitions for the digital money.

The Complete and Utter Abandonment of Fiat Currency

While many think that the monetary experiment that is Bitcoin could crash and burn at any moment, others are waiting for the day that it becomes the new reserve currency of the world. Voorhees won't be satisfied with Bitcoin’s hold on the world’s financial system until the latter of the two scenarios plays out. He said in the chat: 

“The end zone for me is the complete and utter abandonment of fiat currency around the world. I think that will be the sign that we truly — we won. I mean, we’ll know we [won] long before that — maybe we already are [winning].”

Fiat Currency Is a Money of Force

Voorhees has deep-seated contempt for fiat currency, as he sees it as a money of force that allows governments to control their populations. Like many critics of fiat currency systems, the ability to inflate the money supply is at the core of Voorhees’s dissatisfaction with government-controlled money.

“Fiat currency is a money that people are forced to use and [it] gets its value from force. It is a pen into which people are corralled, and through which all sorts of terrible manipulations are carried out on people. Many of the ills of the world stem from it. The ability to inflate money and pay for things beyond what you can tax from a population is a very sneaky and terrible way that organizations maintain power over people. Getting rid of people’s dependence on fiat solves that problem to a large degree.”

Banks Will Still Exist

Although Voorhees would like to see Bitcoin remove the need for many different fiat currencies around the world, he isn't bullish on the idea of Bitcoin completely replacing the needs for traditional banks:

“There’s still going to be banks. I don’t want banks to all collapse. Banks are going to change a lot, but they’re still going to be around providing useful services for people. But the central thing that needs to go away is people’s use of fiat. And it won’t be done by [dictate]; it’s not going to be done because we forced them not to use fiat. It’s going to be done because they figured out there are better alternatives, and they voluntarily walk away from it.”

It may be obvious that banks will not go out of business due to Bitcoin because some companies, such as Coinbase and Circle, are essentially already operating as banks on top of the base Bitcoin blockchain. Many other functions of banks, such as making loans, would likely also exist in a Bitcoin economy.

We have a long way to go to find out the final endgame for Bitcoin, but it’s clear that some members of the community have bigger plans than others. No one could have predicted that Bitcoin would already be this popular in 2015, and it's anyone's guess how far Bitcoin will go over the long term.

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