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Bitcoin Accepted for Political Contributions

Dave Emory’s entire life­time of work is avail­able on a flash dri­ve that can be obtained here. (The flash dri­ve includes the anti-fas­cist books avail­able on this site.)

COMMENT: If you thought that cam­paign finance had become a sticky wick­et in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Cit­i­zens Unit­ed and McCutcheon deci­sions, you might be bit­ter­ly amused by the lat­est devel­op­ment in the lubri­ca­tion of the wheels of democ­ra­cy.

The Fed­er­al Elec­tion Com­mis­sion has giv­en the nod to accept­ing Bit­coins as cam­paign con­tri­bu­tions.

(We have done four pro­grams to date on Bit­coin: FTR #‘s 760, 764, 770, 785.)

The avail­able evi­dence sug­gests that Bit­coin is prob­a­bly an Under­ground Reich “op” with roots in the cyber-fascis­tic lib­er­tar­i­an milieu.

Fans of Cit­i­zens Unit­ed and McCutcheon will be thrilled to know that the top tenth of one per­cent of Bit­coin own­ers con­trol 50% of the total of the cur­ren­cy in exis­tence.

Long live the Repub­lic!

“Pol­i­tics Jumps on Bit­coin Wag­on” by Fre­dreka Schouten; USA Today; 5/9–11/2014.

EXCERPT: The Fed­er­al Elec­tion Com­mis­sion (FEC) unan­i­mous­ly approved its use as a polit­i­cal dona­tion Thurs­day. Com­mis­sion­ers imposed sev­er­al con­di­tions. Among them: No anony­mous bit­coin con­tri­bu­tions will be allowed, and cam­paign trea­sur­ers must scru­ti­nize the dona­tions for “evi­dence of ille­gal­i­ty.”

Jim Harp­er of the industry’s Bit­coin Foun­da­tion, said the FEC’s move lends fur­ther legit­i­ma­cy to the­cur­ren­cy. “It’s anoth­er part of the grow­ing body of reg­u­la­tion that estab­lish­es bit­coin as a co-equal part of the finan­cial ser­vices sys­tem,” he said.

Rep. Jared Polis, a lib­er­al Demo­c­rat from Col­orado, imme­di­ate­ly announced his cam­paign would begin accept­ing the dig­i­tal mon­ey. He praised the FEC for its “for­ward-look­ing stance” to rec­og­nize “the rights of indi­vid­u­als seek­ing alter­na­tives to gov­ern­ment-backed cur­ren­cies to par­tic­i­pate in our demo­c­ra­t­ic polit­i­cal process.”

It’s not clear how quick­ly the cur­ren­cy will spread through the elec­tion land­scape. Offi­cials with the com­mit­tee work­ing to elect House Democ­rats said they had no imme­di­ate plans to accept bit­coins.

Even with­out the for­mal approval of reg­u­la­tors, the Lib­er­tar­i­an Par­ty began accept­ing Bit­coin about a year ago and has col­lect­ed the equiv­a­lent of about $10,000, Exec­u­tive Direc­tor Wes Bene­dict said.


3 comments for “Bitcoin Accepted for Political Contributions”

  1. http://dish.client.shareholder.com/releasedetail.cfm?ReleaseID=851093

    May 29, 2014
    DISH to Accept Bit­coin

    Bit­coin accep­tance begins Q3 for pay-TV sub­scrip­tion ser­vice
    Largest com­pa­ny to-date and first pay-TV provider to accept “cryp­tocur­ren­cy”
    Coin­base select­ed as pay­ment proces­sor
    ENGLEWOOD, Colo.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– DISH today announced that it will become the largest com­pa­ny to accept bit­coin. As the first sub­scrip­tion mod­el pay-TV provider to make this move, DISH will begin accept­ing bit­coin pay­ments from cus­tomers start­ing in the third quar­ter. DISH Net­work L.L.C. is a whol­ly owned sub­sidiary of DISH Net­work Cor­po­ra­tion (NASDAQ: DISH).

    “We always want to deliv­er choice and con­ve­nience for our cus­tomers and that includes the method they use to pay their bills,” said Bernie Han, DISH exec­u­tive vice pres­i­dent and chief oper­at­ing offi­cer. “Bit­coin is becom­ing a pre­ferred way for some peo­ple to trans­act and we want to accom­mo­date those indi­vid­u­als.”

    DISH has select­ed Coin­base as the pay­ment proces­sor for bit­coin trans­ac­tions with cus­tomers who choose to pay their bill online with the bit­coin wal­let of their choice. DISH will use Coin­base’s Instant Exchange™ fea­ture to exchange bit­coin pay­ments to U.S. dol­lars at the moment of the trans­ac­tion.

    “We’re excit­ed to sup­port DISH and their cur­rent and new sub­scribers for their bit­coin trans­ac­tions,” said Coin­base co-founder Fred Ehrsam. “This is a large step for­ward in the grow­ing momen­tum of cus­tomers pay­ing com­pa­nies in bit­coin for things we do every day, like watch­ing pre­mi­um TV.”

    “As a bit­coin pay­ment proces­sor, Coin­base will help DISH make the pay­ment expe­ri­ence easy for our cus­tomers and make it easy for DISH to receive imme­di­ate cred­it in dol­lars, at an attrac­tive cost for DISH,” added Han.

    The bit­coin pay­ment option will be avail­able for DISH cus­tomers choos­ing to make one-time pay­ments on mydish.com start­ing in the third quar­ter. Cus­tomers will still have the option to make any pay­ment online via cred­it card, deb­it card or bank account.

    About DISH

    DISH Net­work Cor­po­ra­tion (NASDAQ: DISH), through its sub­sidiaries, pro­vides approx­i­mate­ly 14.097 mil­lion pay-TV sub­scribers, as of March 31, 2014, with the high­est qual­i­ty pro­gram­ming and tech­nol­o­gy with the most choic­es at the best val­ue. Sub­scribers enjoy a high def­i­n­i­tion line-up with more than 200 nation­al HD chan­nels, the most inter­na­tion­al chan­nels, and award-win­ning HD and DVR tech­nol­o­gy. DISH Net­work Cor­po­ra­tion is a For­tune 200 com­pa­ny. Vis­it http://www.dish.com.

    About Coin­base

    Coin­base is a bit­coin con­sumer wal­let and mer­chant pay­ment pro­cess­ing plat­form that, found­ed in June 2012, now pow­ers 1.3 mil­lion con­sumer wal­lets and sup­ports 31,000 mer­chants. Fund­ed with $31 mil­lion from top ven­ture investors, Coin­base strives to make it easy to buy and sell bit­coin, secure­ly store bit­coin in the cloud, and accept bit­coin as pay­ment and receive funds in U.S. dol­lars. Learn more at http://www.coinbase.com

    Posted by GK | June 1, 2014, 11:28 am
  2. This is inter­est­ing: It’s cur­rent­ly tech­ni­cal­ly ille­gal to devel­op alter­na­tive cur­ren­cies, includ­ing cryp­tocur­ren­cies, in Cal­i­for­nia so all the Bit­coin and oth­er alt­coin devel­op­ers are break­ing the law. But that’s about to change:

    Pan­do Dai­ly
    Cal­i­for­nia gets hip to bit­coin: Sen­ate bank­ing com­mit­tee approves bill to legal­ize cryp­to-cur­ren­cies

    Michael Carney_PandoDaily By Michael Car­ney
    On June 5, 2014

    The state of Cal­i­for­nia appears poised to become a lot more wel­com­ing to bit­coin. A bill to offi­cial­ly legal­ize cryp­tocur­ren­cies and oth­er alter­na­tive forms of mon­ey, recent­ly passed the Cal­i­for­nia Assem­bly by a unan­i­mous 75 to 0 vote and yes­ter­day was approved by the state Sen­ate Bank­ing and Finan­cial Insti­tu­tions Com­mit­tee by a 7 to 1 vote. The next step for the bill dubbed AB-129 Law­ful Mon­ey is a full vote on the sen­ate floor and then, pos­si­bly, a date with Gov­er­nor Jer­ry Brown.

    Cur­rent­ly, the Cal­i­for­nia Cor­po­ra­tions Code Sec­tion 107 states that “No cor­po­ra­tion, flex­i­ble pur­pose cor­po­ra­tion, asso­ci­a­tion or indi­vid­ual shall issue or put in cir­cu­la­tion, as mon­ey, any­thing but the law­ful mon­ey of the Unit­ed States.

    As writ­ten, bit­coin would be deemed ille­gal mon­ey, and thus the bit­coin devel­op­ers and cus­to­di­ans of the bit­coin pro­to­col could be deemed in vio­la­tion of the law. The same is true of the dozens of oth­er alt­coins that have sprung up in bitcoin’s wake, as well as oth­er medi­ums of exchange like cupons, gift cards, and loy­al­ty points. AB-129, if passed into law, would over­ride the lan­guage of Sec­tion 107, mak­ing the devel­op­ment, dis­tri­b­u­tion, and use of cryp­tocur­ren­cies legal in Cal­i­for­nia.

    Cal­i­for­nia is already home to dozens of bit­coin star­tups and investors, none of which have been pros­e­cut­ed for vio­lat­ing the Cal­i­for­nia Cor­po­ra­tions Code – play­ing fast and loose with Mon­ey Trans­mit­ter reg­u­la­tions, how­ev­er, has caught the atten­tion of law enforce­ment. Giv­en the lack of enforce­ment, and the over­whelm­ing momen­tum of bit­coin and oth­er dig­i­tal cur­ren­cies, this reg­u­la­to­ry change is mere­ly a for­mal­i­ty.

    Most star­tups like­ly were unaware that Cal­i­for­nia law out­lawed bit­coin. But large com­pa­nies – think Apple, Google, Face­book, eBay, and Pay­Pal – sure­ly were aware of the statute. One has to won­der if this law had any impact on their col­lec­tive hes­i­tan­cy to embrace cryp­to-cur­ren­cies.


    You have to won­der what this new law will mean for the devel­op­ment of non-cryp­to alter­na­tive cur­ren­cies (and the art of mon­ey-laun­der­ing).

    In relat­ed news...

    Pan­do Dai­ly
    Cryp­to-cur­ren­cies go main­stream with new Face­book tip­ping apps

    By Michael Car­ney
    On June 6, 2014

    Cryp­to-cur­ren­cy tip­ping may be about to go main­stream. This as devel­op­er Ale­jan­dro Caballero post­ed to the r/Dogecoin sub­red­dit late last night that Face­book has approved a pair of doge­coin and mul­ti­coin tip­ping apps (inspir­ing­ly named The Doge Tip­ping App and Mul­ti­coin Tip­ping App). The devel­op­er called it a “dou­ble hit!”

    The lat­ter app will sup­port 14 alt­coins, includ­ing Doge­coin. Caballero explains the deci­sion to incor­po­rate more than a dozen less main­stream coins as “the most pure spir­it of shib­ing,” in a nod to the Shi­ba Inu dog which has become the unof­fi­cial mas­cot of Doge­coin.

    Caballero writes:

    Some days ago we got The Doge Tip­ping App being the first of its kind. Some adjust­ments where [sic] made dur­ing the review, but it was already approved.

    When we sub­mit­ted the Doge-only app, the Mul­ti­coin Tip­ping App was also sub­mit­ted. But we need­ed to change sev­er­al things to have it final­ly approved, which hap­pened a few min­utes ago.

    It’s unclear what exact­ly the change entailed, but it’s a fair bet they had some­thing to do with user pri­va­cy and secu­ri­ty.

    Tip­ping, and micro-pay­ments in gen­er­al, are among the more inter­est­ing and unique appli­ca­tions of cryp­to-cur­ren­cies. By virtue of exist­ing out­side the tra­di­tion­al bank­ing sys­tem, bit­coin and its brethren are able to avoid the vast major­i­ty of pay­ment fees levied by lega­cy finan­cial insti­tu­tions. Where­as a $0.25 cent cred­it card pay­ment may cost the recip­i­ent $0.35 cents in fees, and thus be uneco­nom­i­cal, when sent with cryp­to-cur­ren­cies, those fees shrink to almost zero.

    With these new eco­nom­ics, a whole new world of appli­ca­tions becomes pos­si­ble. For exam­ple, the Chica­go Sun Times became the first major pub­lish­er to test a micro-pay­ments pay­wall, part­ner­ing with Bit­Wall for the ser­vice. Rather than pay­ing sev­er­al dol­lars per month to sub­scribe to the news­pa­per, read­ers could for the first time pay a few pen­nies to read a sin­gle arti­cle of inter­est.

    Doge­coin has grown almost entire­ly through tip­ping pen­nies or frac­tions of a pen­ny online to reward users for post­ing insight­ful or fun­ny com­ments, shar­ing valu­able infor­ma­tion, or oth­er­wise con­tribut­ing to the com­mu­ni­ty. In the past, Doge­coin tip­ping has been large­ly con­fined to Red­dit and oth­er cryp­to-cur­ren­cy forums. Caballero’s apps could change this by bring­ing the prac­tice to Facebook’s more than 1 bil­lion glob­al users.

    The most inter­est­ing aspect of this news is that it poten­tial­ly offers a prac­ti­cal, util­i­ty-based entry point for every­day con­sumers to begin using cryp­to-cur­ren­cies. Many users will like­ly receive their first coins through tips, rather than proac­tive­ly going out and buy­ing them. But through either curios­i­ty or pay-it-for­ward think­ing, it’s like­ly that these coins will be put back into cir­cu­la­tion through future tip­ping. It’s not hard to imag­ine how this phe­nom­e­non blos­soms. A sim­i­lar moti­va­tion under­lies the MIT Bit­coin Project, which gift­ed $100 in bit­coin to every under­grad­u­ate stu­dent in an effort to seed the com­mu­ni­ty, spread aware­ness, and dri­ve usage.

    The Doge­coin and Mul­ti­coin tip­ping apps apps aren’t the first to bring cryp­to-cur­ren­cy pay­ments to Face­book, but they are the first to focus sole­ly on tip­ping. Last month, Quick­Coin released its own Face­book wal­let app allow­ing users to send dig­i­tal cur­ren­cy to among friends on the social net­work.


    Of course the major lim­i­ta­tion of these apps is that they don’t sup­port bit­coin, which is by far the largest and most ubiq­ui­tous of all cryp­to-cur­ren­cies. Tip­ping hasn’t real­ly caught on among bit­coin users to the degree it has with­in many alt­coin com­mu­ni­ties. But a sim­ple, main­stream appli­ca­tion could go a long way toward chang­ing that. Bit­coin­tip and oth­er appli­ca­tions already allow tip­ping with­in Red­dit, but Face­book is obvi­ous­ly the 800,000 pound goril­la of online com­mu­ni­ties.

    Going for­ward, Caballero and his team plan to extend these apps beyond Face­book to cre­ate sim­i­lar plu­g­ins across oth­er online net­works includ­ing Word­Press, Dru­pal, Joom­la, Xen­foro, PHPBB, and oth­ers. The broad­er vision is to cre­ate a uni­ver­sal tip­ping plat­form that would func­tion across the Web.

    For cryp­to-cur­ren­cies to jump the divide between geeky under­ground tech­nol­o­gy and main­stream finan­cial instru­ment, there needs to be greater aware­ness, eas­i­er access, and more util­i­ty based appli­ca­tions. At least in con­cept, Face­book tip­ping apps would seem to check all three box­es. In oth­er words: this could be big.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | June 8, 2014, 4:20 pm
  3. http://www.thestreet.com/story/12732907/1/bitcoin-reels-in-dish-network-ebay-with-more-big-fish-to-follow.html?puc=yahoo&cm_ven=YAHOONEW YORK

    “(TheStreet) — While the rest of the world may be wary of bit­coin, Dish Net­work (DISH_) and eBay (EBAY_) have already embraced it.

    A cou­ple of days ago, eBay chief John Don­a­hoe cham­pi­oned bit­coin on CNBC’s ‘Squawk Box’. The CEO sees bit­coin play­ing an inte­gral role in the future of online pay­ments. As you know, eBay owns Pay­pal.”

    “Bit­coin: Com­ing Soon to an iPhone Near You

    Apple (AAPL) has paved the way for dig­i­tal cur­ren­cies to be trans­act­ed on iPhones and iPads.”

    Posted by GK | June 15, 2014, 11:38 am

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