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The price of btc will be $13337 by the time you're done reading this.

This morning, according to the publicized fiat exchanges, bitcoin was trading at 3.8k USD. This price is up from 3.3k or something, which now appears to be the valley of some dip after a long stable 6k price.

When these fiat-reported major price shifts occur, a whole lot of technical analysis voodoo and faulty logic gets used to explain what happened that caused the change in price. A common explanation for a price dip is "X government banned bitcoin" or "the block size debate is causing doubts.” For a rising price, the explanation is some blah blah about how new X feature from the power ranger bitcoin team has caused increased confidence in the chain, upgrade your nodes today!

But the question of why and especially why now with regards to the price is generally too complicated to get answered. The last-traded-price is based off an equation with millions of variables, and for the lay person it is impossible to discover. Perhaps the DO”J” just seized a new batch of bitcoins, and the price goes down because they are dumping the stolen coins onto the market. Perhaps an exchange was hacked and their reserves were stolen, causing the supply to drop, and thus the price to increase. Perhaps there is a group psychology phenomena at play. No one really knows.

We can make statements about the price from recent trades, but the price of bitcoin for an individual is in something akin to a quantum superposition until the very moment when an exchange occurs. At the instant a transfer is made, that price superposition collapses to the value for the parties involved in the exchange. But until that moment, the price is a Fugazzi. "Fugayzzi? Fuggazi? it’s a wazy it’s a woosy it’s a .. fairy dust, it doesn’t exist, it’s never landed, it is no matter, it’s not on the elemental chart, it’s not fucking real."

Yet with a very real cap of 21,000,000 btc and no cap on the USD, there is little hope that the ability to buy btc for price P can stay at P <= C for any constant C when C is denominated in dollars. So when a company is saying that the price is at some peculiarly low value - $3.5k or so - an eyebrow must be raised in suspicion.

Coinbase selling btc for 4k is the same thing as children selling lemonade for less than the price of the supplies they used to buy the lemonade. The point of the kids selling lemonade is not to make money. It is to have social interactions and receive the dopamine hit from the smile on their customers’ faces. They are eating the cost to obtain an ulterior goal. Likewise, Coinbase, in typical SV fashion, is not concerned about turning a profit. And especially not a profit denominated in bitcoin. Their job is to sell btc at the lowest price to the greatest number of people. Preferably young ones just entering the work force. When a whale (i.e. someone with like >$10k dollars) comes to Coinbase and says, “$4k a btc? i’d like all the lemonade please” they are either turned away or are given bitcoin IOUs.

If Coinbase were really a profit oriented company, they would have taken their $100mil+ investment (read: access to write permission to the USD db) and used it to acquire more btc. They were in a better position than anyone to know that the price of btc was going to go up. Same thing with with their 116mil+ investment into hamster powered miners. (Does anyone even remember them?)

At the end of the day, you have to pay for the privilege of knowing what the price is for btc at a certain volume. It’s a world of lies out there - and the only thing that’s for certain is the real game is being played by high rollers off of the exchanges.

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