Sound Money and Sound Art — The Common Denominator is Integrity
Remember, Bitcoiners Have Integrity
Being a real Bitcoiner is about having integrity. We fight every day for sound money, which is money that is moral and just. We fight against those who benefit from the immorality and injustice of bad money. “Fix the money, fix the world” we declare!
Integrity is hard to maintain in a world of temptation and phoney role models
Having integrity is hard. Those who sell out to fiat or promote shitcoinery betray the fight and surrender their integrity. Like the character “Cypher” in The Matrix who has been red-pilled yet still betrays his allies for a comfortable life back in the matrix, taking the red or orange pill is no guarantee of integrity. It merely opens your eyes to what integrity requires. This scene in The Matrix shows us how art can project what betrayal of integrity looks like.
The Battle for Integrity in Art
The battle for integrity is fought on many fronts besides sound money.
This year a very small, but principled group of artists fought and won a war of their own, over art. Their battle is symbolic of the one Bitcoiners are fighting over money.
This is the story of those artists and the coders they worked with to support real art. Not surprisingly, the heroes of the story are Bitcoiners.
In 2021 the world watched as shitcoinery wrapped its slimy tentacles of deception around the concept of art. As with everything else they do, the shitcoiners were not interested in the fundamentals. They wanted to make as much money as possible as fast as possible without any concern for principles, their victims, or the long term. Their weapon for attacking art was the Non-Fungible Token, NFTs.
Their tactics were the same ones that provided them with loot in past attacks on other instruments. Whether it was attacks against Bitcoin (by issuing shitcoins), against equity (through the ICO scams of 2017) or against yield bearing financial instruments (through ‘defi’ that yields worthless token after worthless token) their tactics followed their established pattern. With the SEC hot on their heels for numerous legal violations, they needed an industry not regulated as closely. Art collection was perfect.
They fabricated some technologically incoherent narrative for “artworks on the blockchain” that had no basis in actual fact, and they marketed the hell out of that idea by paying celebrities, athletes, ‘celebrity’-investors and the shills who happily promote any crypto-scam they can get behind.
There is after all no shortage of sellouts who will eagerly say anything in exchange for money. Curiously many of them don’t need the money. It seems that as long as there is a way to trick others out of money while being in the spotlight, that is a temptation that is just too irresistible for the likes of Mark Cuban or Gary Vee. (Note how Cuban went from decrying Bitcoin as inferior to bananas to suddenly promoting tokens with imaginary art that people could pretend to own.)
Millions of crappy jpegs were created, some by algorithm alone even, and these things were marketed as art including scribbles (Gary Vee); pixelated avatar-heads (crypto-punks); snapshots of tweets (Dorsey’s first tweet) and any other kind of junk that con-men could slap an NFT label on proliferated.
However, it was and is all nonsense. NFTs are not ownership of anything but a digital token that enforces nothing whatsoever upon any underlying artwork and creates no scarcity of any kind. A trillion NFTs of the same artwork can be conjured up and there’s no authentic ownership, legal or metaphysical, of the ‘artwork’ if it is a digital file.
Many artists, like moths, were lured toward the flame of riches promised by NFT pushers.
But not all.
The Artists of Integrity Resisted
There were artists who refused to participate in the NFT scam.
Like Cypherpunks who write and run code rather than accept flawed theories or ask for permission from authorities, these artists made great art rather than participating in the flawed and unsustainable, but highly popular and mesmerizingly profitable NFT scam.
In separating themselves from being purveyors of junk that masqueraded as art, they avoided creating disposable garbage and instead they made beautiful, inspiring, enduring art. They refused to fall pretty to the siren song of empty promises built on foundations of poorly written and executed code.
Take a look at the magnificence of The Bitcoin Full Node Sculpture 7.0 by FractalEncrypt. To create it required inventing a new technique for cutting and etching mirrors with lasers. It took him months of effort. Armed only with his vision, he had to re-draw and re-design the entire piece, learning to use tools and features he’d never before used. He worked around the clock while holding down a day job, often leaving his laser running to complete a task as he tried to find a few hours of sleep. He barely managed to get it done in time for the Miami Bitcoin conference, showing up late and missing the chance to exhibit it at the “whales only” event.
All this effort, and nothing less, was required to create this unique and original artwork. It is an artwork that can only be fully appreciated in person because, being a mirror, it reflects something of the observer in it. It is a learning opportunity for all who look upon it.
The Impact of Real Art
What would your reflection reveal if you gazed into The Full Bitcoin Node Sculpture in person?
What Bitcoiners See — Inspiration
If you are a Bitcoiner with integrity you would see in your own face the approval, the appreciation, the wonderment, the joy of looking upon a work of beauty inspired by Bitcoin, itself a creation of genius and integrity and a philosophy of morality, justice, effort and honesty.
That is what many Bitcoiners got to see as this artwork was on display at the Bitcoin 2021 conference in Miami. They saw in their faces their conviction. They watched it deepen. They saw what comes from preserving their integrity. They walked away recharged with energy — an energy from within. They saw the inspiration Bitcoin provided to the artist who created the artwork and they felt an inspiration themselves to recall and further explore the beautiful construction of and the extraordinary possibilities created by Bitcoin.
But there were other observers too.
What NFT Promoters See — Beauty to Exploit
Operating on the last fumes of their dying scam, NFT promoters looked and what they saw was not beauty to be admired, but beauty to be exploited. They saw their own ugliness — one that wanted to use beauty that was not theirs, to obtain something that they did not intend to earn.
They wanted to use that beauty to deceive more victims into the cesspool of NFTs. They saw themselves groveling before the artist to beg him to collaborate in a scheme wherein he and they would fleece someone of their money in exchange for a photograph or video of the masterpiece. They did not see integrity in this mirror. They saw the vile spirit of a pimp attempting to solicit a beautiful woman to become a whore.
The artist’s flat out refusal to participate in or enable their schemes was the demonstration of that Bitcoiner integrity we see and value in our community.
What Shitcoiners See — Their Own Envy
And shitcoiners also gazed into the mirror. What did they see? They saw pretence. They saw staring back at them the faces of pretenders. Pretenders who did not understand what they were doing but were going along with the crowd. Pretenders who parroted arguments they could not follow or reason about. Pretenders who knowingly misrepresented reality to gain advantage over people who placed their trust in them.
They saw envy — their jealousy directed at Bitcoin’s complete absence of pretence and adherence strictly to all the realities of what is required to create true, sound money.
They asked the artist to create a knock-off of this sculpture for their shitcoin, just as their shitcoin is a knock-off of Bitcoin itself. But the artist refused. He explained not only that he would not do it, but in fact, that he could not do it. How could he make a sculpture with the beautiful geometry of Bitcoin for a coin that had no such beauty? What would the pre-mine look like? It wouldn’t be pretty. What about the numerous hard forks changing the monetary policy and breaking the promises of unstoppable code? What about the creation of countless scams using their coin, including the very scam of NFTs themselves? What would be the artistic projection of these things? Shattered glass? Cheap plastic? Pieces of garbage taped to the sculpture?
Integrity made it impossible for the artist to produce anything of comparable beauty and integrity for any other coin. And the shitcoiners left feeling empty and hollow.
REAL ART BROTHERS!
Real art is as powerful as any human creation. FractalEncrypt struck an incredibly powerful chord with his harmonious integration of precision cut concentric layers of mirrors, representing the circles within circles of Bitcoin’s precision-engineered layers of technology and emergent properties.
Beholders of this art are left with two possible reactions.
The first reaction is to embrace the beauty of Bitcoin and see what beauty it reveals in yourself — to be empowered by the emotions and ideas the art stirs within oneself. To know that if you step up and point your attention and energy at the Bitcoin network that you too can contribute to the magic that is Bitcoin.
The second reaction is to reject Bitcoin and wander aimlessly and hopelessly in the unreal world of pretence and fraud.
Winning The War
Thus, simply by making great art and ignoring the distractions, the war for art was won.
We do not need a declaration of defeat by dishonest scammers who will never admit their dishonesty. We do not need them to abandon their attempts to hijack the concept of art.
All we need is real art to gaze upon and contemplate. That art provides its benefits only to us, because it requires that the beholders themselves possess the virtuous attributes captured in the artwork.
Creating great art on a foundation of a truly great inspiration such as Bitcoin and displaying it at a Bitcoin conference provides us with a wonderful example of the perfect, non contradictory fit between all disciplines when those disciplines are pursued with integrity.
Art built on a sound money standard will stand the test of time. How long do you think before individual NFTs break, or their entire chain is abandoned? Meanwhile the Bitcoin Full Node Sculpture #7 is made to literally last hundreds, if not thousands of years if properly preserved.
We are witnessing a new renaissance through the principles and aesthetics of Bitcoin.
More great Bitcoin inspired art from scarce.city below: