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Fiat Is Artificial Money And Bitcoin Is Natural Money


I attended the Bitcoin Freedom Festival in Uvita, Costa Rica from January 18th through 20th. It was a unique event that was unlike any bitcoin gathering I’ve ever attended. There were over 30 speakers during the festival so I won’t try to cover each but there was one session that stood out and it involved a panel of indigenous women all who spoke through a translator. This panel said two things on the final morning which captured the essence of the festival. First, she made it clear they were guided by the Great Spirit to be there on that stage. [“I came because the Great Spirit opened the path” which included a car to the venue.] The wind speaks to us, the water speaks to us, the trees speak to us. Grandfather says, “always speak to that which gives us energy.” Some of these ideas might seem strange to the western mind, fully addicted to their screens and disconnected life.


And then one of the members of the panel described bitcoin in a way that I’d never heard before. She called it the natural coin or “natural money.” It was one of those moments when the blinding flash of the obvious hits you like a thunderbolt. “Bitcoin is natural money.” Hold it, did she say bitcoin is natural money? Holy crap “bitcoin IS natural money!!” The completely ignorant say bitcoin is backed by nothing but that is so laughably wrong there is no point even engaging with someone who holds that uninformed view. Some bitcoiners like to say bitcoin is “money backed by energy” which many bitcoiners {most notably Eric Yakes author of The 7th Property} vigorously refute. Eric says bitcoin is “secured” by energy which I agree is a better framing.

However, this wise women in the jungle just gave bitcoin the best framing yet it’s: “n a t u r a l m o n e y.” You start with running water or methane gas, or hydrocarbons or wind or solar. ALL THESE ELEMENTS COME FROM NATURE AND ARE THEN CONVERTED TO ELECTRICITY THAT ALLOWS BITCOIN MINERS [ASIC’S] TO BEGIN HASHING WHICH EVENTUALLY RESULTS IN BITCOIN. Without these natural resources there is no bitcoin. Statement of fact. Start with something natural and end with bitcoin. The idea that every country in the world has natural resources that were previously unable to be converted to natural money is not lost on people in Africa or Costa Rica. [Note: Anyone reading this who loves this idea of natural money AND wants to author a children’s book on the topic please reach out to me.]

Fiat Is The Antithesis Of Natural Money

Compare what is needed to produce “natural money” to every fiat currency in the world or any of the top alt coins. Trillions of US dollars can be created out of thin air in seconds as long as you’re the central banker or someone holding an insider position [ONE OF THE PRIVILEGED FEW] who gets to produce money from nothing and certainly NOT FROM NATURE. Fiat is the antithesis of natural money!! “Stick that in your pipe and smoke it Senator Warren!” Fiat is artificial. Bitcoin is natural.

Natural Money NOT Bitcoin

Bitcoin is the term for the zealots, the ideologues and the movement. There is nothing wrong with the term bitcoin but consider the adversarial energy that has been built against it? Our adversaries have built some bitter narratives against it. Are they bullshit? You bet!!! Does most of the world know that? NO!!!

Problem: Bitcoin is used as a derisive term by bitcoin’s biggest enemies, haters and detractors. I’ve personally watched young and old visibly blanche at my mention of the word bitcoin.

Solution: Natural money is so much more approachable for the uninitiated. Imagine if we asked Charlie Munger, Warren Buffett or Peter Schiff this question: “What are your thoughts about natural money?” Their responses will make them sound clownish and ignorant.

Natural money quietly, peacefully and softly creates curiosity around the idea there is such a thing in the world as natural money. There are all kinds of implied qualities about that term which neutralizes the attack surface on bitcoin. It also reduces the attack surface by bitcoin’s opponents because it’s much harder to attack “natural money.” Natural money is of the people, for the people and by the people. You can be against “natural money” of course but it almost seems unnatural to do so. It eviscerates some typical attacks and darts thrown at bitcoin.

It’s the first natural money native to the internet. It doesn’t require much explanation beyond saying it’s the only form of money fueled or sourced by natural resources. Who’d want to oppose “natural money”? [As an experiment, go back and read your favorite or next article about bitcoin but substitute the term “natural money” each time the word bitcoin appears. How does it land on you?]


As we gathered round the bonfire on the beach that final night on Playa Hermosa as the festival came to a close I shared this indigenous woman’s insight with other festival goers and it resonated. So as a final thought, I invite you to consider executing a “soft fork” in your use of language from this point forward and share her wisdom far and wide. In my view, she captured the gestalt of bitcoin by calling it “natural money.”

From now on, when you get the chance I’d suggest you use the phrase natural money 2x more often when describing bitcoin. Why? There is a huge segment of the population that is more likely to be curious about natural money. Psychologically and subconsciously the world has been HUNGERING for natural money since Nixon closed the gold window in 1971. Bitcoin can sound too much like a cult or religious zealots to those who fail to appreciate it’s breakthrough impact on humanity. There have been dozens of negative narratives thrown at bitcoin since inception. For me it seems much more accurate and satisfying to refer to bitcoin as natural money. One of the festival attendees even created a Twitter handle #naturalmoney. As a gesture of respect for this wise lady let us know you agree with her. 

This is a guest post by Mark Maraia. Opinions expressed are entirely their own and do not necessarily reflect those of BTC Inc or Bitcoin Magazine.


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