Man’s ingenuity or greed knows no bound for getting richer, and for a few to devise newer methods to dupe the many gullible running blind like a herd with their hard-earned money. There have been may scams, a few astounding which have robbed man of many millions in the past.
The classic case is of a kind of tulip, pushed to sell for 1615 Florins, nearly three times the combined price of four bulls and 1000 pounds of cheese. Unabated, the tulip price continued to rise to an astronomical high to 4600 Florins in addition to offer of brand-new horse drawn carriage, two horses and a whole set of harnesses, until soon thereafter the bubble burst driving hundreds of thousands bankrupt.
An unidentified source, Satoshi Nakamoto, created bitcoins in 2009, a cryptocurrency, which do not require the support of governments of central bank nor can be controlled by these traditional sources. Cryptocurrency caught the imagination of many, desiring to become rich too soon and without realising the risks that were involved with their investments. 16 million of the total 21 million bitcoins are now held by investors.
The value of any crypto-currency is purely decided on the empirical value approval of the market and its wide acceptability. High or lower prices of any cryptocurrency is decided by the market itself. Being a block chain system, it eliminates all intermediaries, which is a serious cause of concern for banks and governments. The price of Bitcoin hit the stratosphere during the fall 2017, when Bitcoin reached nearly US$20000 and to steadily fall below $6000 soon thereafter. Of the estimated $850 Billion total cryptocurrency market, more than half trillion dollars of the investors have been wiped out in the last week, which could easily be the greatest scam on our planet.
We have come across many scams like the street corner stainless steel utensil funds, chit funds promising high returns like Sanchaita, Narada, Sarada, Rose-valley etc., teak plantations fund, share market scams and many such Ponzi scams. Scammers always engineer novel methods to loot the gullible and market their wares in attractive packages promising high returns, the investors’ irresistible greed soon succumbing and destroying them eventually.
Interest on cryptocurrency heightened after Swiss bank loosened its secrecy clauses, Panama papers shattering the shady money held in BVI and other parts of the world, US and EU pressing on a few countries for more transparency and demonetisation in India hitting hard on the black money etc. The dark world urgently needed a safer haven, far from the prying eyes of law. Bitcoin and such cryptocurrencies offered a refuge, unreachable by government and law enforcement agencies. That was not going to last for long, as many governments have banned it or after controlling its usage.
I am aghast and suffered a near obsession, watching the graph of the cryptocurrencies. I helplessly watched many, boasting earlier of minting millions, now ashen and sullen faced with their heavily diluted investments. This was bound to happen. Governments and Central banks will never relish any form of currency or system, which would undermine their supremacy. It is wise to earn lesser and to live healthier and longer!