Renowned tech entrepreneur, angel investor, and author of The Network State, Balaji Srinivasan, has called for a “giant robot” made up of supportive governing bodies and crypto proponents to combat the “giant monster” that is the U.S. federal government. Speaking at the first in-person ETHGlobal Pragma Tokyo Summit on April 13, Srinivasan emphasized that difficult economic and societal changes are coming, but he is optimistic about the tools crypto and the larger community focused on “network states” provide to weather the storm.
Srinivasan believes that the fiat crisis will draw people to decentralization due to a “deficit of trust in the world,” but noted that some degree of trust is still required for society to work at a primary level. He explained that decentralization is coming, and then there will be a need for re-centralization, but consensual re-centralization of the other side into small clusters. He emphasized the importance of building high-trust communities with physical meet-ups as the seed for rebuilding things after the crisis.
Srinivasan also spoke about the draconian physical lockdowns of recent years, which he said were medical in nature according to mainstream media. He believes that the network state is in part a recipe for a “new normal” and that the alternative to digital lockdown is freedom, cryptocurrency, and bitcoin. He encouraged attendees to think about building high-trust societies with physical meetups where they can physically verify people, as in a post-fiat crisis kind of world, everything that is done in crypto becomes much more valuable.
Addressing American politics, Srinivasan said that “the farther you are away physically, financially, and socially from Blue America, the better off you are.” He noted that many people are migrating to areas perceived as crypto-friendly and pro-freedom, like Latin America and Republican states in the U.S. He believes that the next step is not to simply think of it as just the state versus the network, but rather to find jurisdictions where the state is actually supporting the network and to do deals with them.
Srinivasan compared the situation to the Hollywood film Pacific Rim, where humans were unable to fight a massive monster that had emerged from the sea. He said that, against the government, individuals or companies cannot fight alone. To beat this gigantic monster, a giant robot, a good robot of their own is needed. He emphasized the importance of sovereign versus sovereign, where good states are fighting bad states.
Srinivasan also said that he will issue an update on his ongoing $1 million-dollar bitcoin bet “soon,” noting that “the reason I did that was to draw attention to this crisis.” He is working on a follow-up to his book The Network State and creating videos to go along with it, because “a lot of those things that I thought were going to come in ten years might be coming in a few years.”
In conclusion, Srinivasan believes that difficult economic and societal changes are coming, but he is optimistic about the tools crypto and the larger community focused on “network states” provide to weather the storm. He emphasized the need to build high-trust communities with physical meet-ups as the seed for rebuilding things after the crisis, and to find jurisdictions where the state is actually supporting the network and to do deals with them. Srinivasan also believes that a giant robot made up of supportive governing bodies and crypto proponents is needed to combat the giant monster that is the U.S. federal government.