Last week I attended the London BlockChain Week. It is an industry conference (run each year) and was a very interesting combination of people providing thoughtful and provoking presentations interspersed with industry presentations on new product development. A lot of those new products were genuine blockchain applications, some were glorified tech-upgrades, and others, I suspect, opportunities to raise money using the latest jargon terms to excite unsophisticated investors.
One very clear and consistent message, however, was that innovators and investors should avoid operating in the US. This is a very interesting paradox – a lot of the new innovation in this space occurs in the US, but it appears that the US has policy settings that cannot retain that activity. Chris Berg, Jason Potts and I are working on a theory to resolve that paradox – but in the meantime a popular culture explanation can probably be found in the TV series Billions.
Here is a confrontation between the two major protagonists: Bobby Axelrod (Damian Lewis) and Chuck Rhoades (Paul Giamatti).
Note in the clip that the Chuck Rhoades character describes himself as being an unimaginative, do-gooder. Viewers of the series, however, know him to be ethically bankrupt, morally corrupt, and a sexual deviant. Perhaps the latter aspect boosts the ratings, but his behaviour as regulator is abhorrent.