Best Argument: Yes
Audience Favored: Yes (77%)
Web currencies won't go away
Mr. Krigsman's argument comes down to the government will crush web currencies because that's what governments do. Like they've crushed prostitution and recreational drugs? Like they (haven't) regulated the shadow banking system.
Money is a tool, and like any tool it can be used for good and nefarious purposes. You can buy a pizza with Bitcoin - and why not?
It would be better if Bitcoin were accepted as an alternative currency by most national governments - but it isn't necessary. Money today is a medium of exchange and, to a lesser extent, a store of value.
If citizens choose to accept Bitcoin, it's a medium of exchange. And the wider its use, the less easy it is to manipulate its value.
National currencies are recent. The US Federal Reserve Bank is only 100 years old. Dollar gold convertability ended in 1971 and we've had floating exchange rates - no fixed values - ever since.
Bitcoin – or something like it – only requires a cloud-based infrastructure and individuals who choose to use it. The globalization of the economy and the desire of citizens to put their wealth to whatever private purposes they please are driving Bitcoin. Those trends aren't going away - and neither will web currencies.
Not a viable currency
My worthy debate opponent believes that Bitcoin is a savior of freedom and will protect the American people from snooping by Big Brother and the NSA.
Friends, this view is simply wrong.
The question we must ask is simple – is Bitcoin a practical and viable replacement for US currency? The answer to this question is a resounding NO. Our entire economic system rests on the principle of trust and faith in the shared currency we call the dollar.
Today’s vote is not a referendum on privacy nor a statement of belief that the NSA snoops on all communications. The debate only answers whether you think Bitcoin can become a national currency.
I beg you, vote NO to send a message that false arguments cannot be allowed to win this serious and reasoned debate.
Digital currency could win the day
While both gentlemen gave truly spirited arguments, I've got to hand this one to Robin Harris. He backed his claims with a more reasoned, inclusive response and underscored the fact that while Bitcoin itself may not be the future of money, a digital currency like it could win the day. Today, Mr. Harris did just that. Well done.