Hillary Clinton was on The Rachel Maddow Show, MSNBC’s earlier in the week to offer some words of wisdom for crypto-bros trying to navigate questions about deplatforming during Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
“If the Ukrainians can inflict sufficient economic pain with our assistance, we will. [Russian President Vladimir] Putin and, sadly, the Russian people, combined with providing weapons…that might be the only way…that I can see us getting to a stalemate that might save the Ukrainian people from even greater tragedy,” said Clinton, referring to the broad-based sanctions imposed by Western governments on Russian financial institutions and state-owned companies.
Clinton added,”I was disappointed to see that some of the so-called crypto exchanges, not all of them, but some of them are refusing to end transactions with Russia for some philosophy of libertarianism or whatever,” later in the segment. “Everybody…should do as much as possible to isolate Russian economic activity right now.”
Maddow seemed to be in agreement with her guest and called crypto “an escape hatch” that could stymie multilateral action.
This is precisely what the point of Crypto. Crypto’s ability to transcend national borders is not a problem, but a feature.
Mykhailo Federorov, Ukraine’s Vice Prime Minister, gave instructions on Sunday crypto platformsIt is possible to block the addresses on blockchain of Russian or Belarusian users. Many major playersThe crypto community reacted with anger to this. They pointed out that deplatforming or imposing sanctions based on nationality is against the liberatory promises of crypto.
Many countries’ governments have been able to and have taken steps to crack down on the use of cryptocurrency exchanges. In recent months, they added reporting requirements when large quantities of crypto were bought or sold. To a certain degree, exchanges are still subject to the rules of the countries they operate in—as opposed to cold wallets, which are offline means of storing your crypto. Since widespread crypto adoption is still in its infancy, governments are still ironing out their regulatory approaches; expect lots of different frameworks—and subsequent workarounds—in the coming years.
4/6 We are pursuing our mission @krakenfxIt is about bridging individuals out of legacy finance systems and bringing them into the crypto world. Where arbitrary lines on maps don’t matter anymore, and where they don’t need to be worried about being subject to broad, indiscriminate wealth theft,
— Jesse Powell (@jespow) February 28, 2022
All of this isn’t to say broad-based economic sanctions will not be effective in applying pressure to Putin. But people within crypto tend to approach people deplatforming with significant trepidation. Ordinary Russians currently face sanctions because of the actions of their leader. It’s crucial to understand the suffering they will feel.
Russian customers can still use cryptocurrency exchanges such as Kraken and Binance for their financial needs. This allows them to maintain some degree of financial freedom, even if the future looks grim. They should both have been available to more people in the future. financialIf they choose, there is an option for them to physically leave the country. Cryptocurrency may help everyday Russians but it is also a great tool for the Ukrainians who are under siege and face financial instability due to war.
Crypto provides security & refuge for ordinary people who ought not be punished for the sins of their government pic.twitter.com/fIZUcyHjYj
— Liz Wolfe (@lizzywol) March 2, 2022