Podcast Ep. 23: Joshua Scigala
DeFi Against the Machine - Learnings from the FTX Meltdown & Building a Privatized and Decentralized Gold Standard for the 21st century
Before I talk about the episode, a thought on the FTX meltdown.
A thought on thoughtlessness.
As a trained philosopher myself, I might be biased - but I do think it’s one of the most underrated disciplines in the world.
We’ll find out how much deliberate malice was involved in the FTX meltdown, but what I saw in the debate between SBF and Erik Voorhees was one man who has deeply thought about the issues, and another one who was caught trying to reconcile inconsistent beliefs he didn’t seem to have thought about long and hard.
I think it’s important to sometimes take a step back and think.
What am I doing here? What are my core beliefs and where do they clash with others? Why do I think my beliefs are justified and are they really?
Not only SBF but large cadres of public officials and crypto industry players should meditate on those questions.
With that said, here’s a summary of my discussion with Joshua Scigala:
Josh has been in the industry since 2010 and has seen many collapses and creative destruction. He believes the industry has a way of overcoming failed experiments and bad ideas by writing better code. Better code instead of laws and regulation is at the heart of the ethos of Defi.
We discuss stablecoins and Josh's mission to create a privatized and decentralized Gold Standard for the 21st century. Stablecoins create access to the financial innovation of the crypto ecosystem while allowing a host of important everyday transactions. Unlike algorithmic stablecoins, TheStandard.io is backed by rare assets, i.e. Gold, Bitcoin and Ethereum.
The Standard aims to solve inflation by leveraging devaluation to work for savers, not against them. Besides leveraging rare assets, TheStandard.io also aims to innovate when it comes to decentralized governance through prediction markets
The pace of financial innovation in Defi is mesmerizing, but the industry is threatened on multiple fronts by bad PR, regulatory overreach and sometimes also its own hubris. However, the movement survived multiple crises and came out stronger by building antifragile systems.
One option to build an antifragile financial system is by creating alternative jurisdictions for crypto, like Catawba Digital Economic Zone, El Salvador, Portugal, Estonia, RNS-ID in Palau, Próspera or Itana by Talent City
KillB, a company from Brazil, is even offering crypto companies help to find the right domicile for them.
Hard times are to come for crypto, but we’re building the guardrails of a better financial system already - let’s emerge stronger!