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Before today, you might not have heard of Javier Milei. Regarded as a fringe, far-right outsider with radical views, Milei's Argentinia presidential campaign was initially laughed off as a trivial attempt to gain popularity. However, over the past few months, Milei repeatedly broke barriers, ultimately leading to his victory today.
Defying all odds, Milei won over 55% of votes (13,781,154), muscling out his rival, Peronist Economy Minister Sergio Massa. But what exactly has Argentina voted for?
From a crypto point of view, Milei is the ultimate presidential candidate for the industry. Describing the central bank as a "scam" and a “mechanism by which politicians cheat the good people with inflationary tax," Milei has served as the anti-financial anarchist that degens aspired to become.
Milei has been equally vocal about his support for Bitcoin, hailing it as “the return of money to its original creator, the private sector.”
He also pledged to launch a CBDC to "solve" Argentina's inflation crisis, which hit 140% over the last 12 months.
Consequently, upon his victory, Bitcoin jumped 3% to $37,350. Moreover, Crypto Twitter, many of whom are not Argentinian, have shown their overwhelming support for Milei.
Organs, Climate Change & Chainsaws
Alongside Milei's radical views on Bitcoin, he also professes rather radical views on other aspects of life including:
- Advocating for civilian access to firearms
- Promoting the sale of human organs
- Abolishing public education
- Abolishing public healthcare
- Repealing abortion
- Permitting companies to pollute rivers
- Dismissing climate change as a "lie of socialism"
He also bizarrely brandished a chainsaw during his campaign to rally supporters and described his opponents as "leftist sh*ts," advising them to "shove the state in [their] f****** a****** and the f****** c*** of [their] f****** mother."
Bitcoin & Politics
Elections offer the opportunity for candidates to represent the masses and their interests, at least in theory. So where does cryptocurrency fit on the political scale?
In Argentina, cryptocurrency earned the support of Milei and his radical outlook. It's somewhat unsurprising - cryptocurrency has long been regarded as the antithesis of traditional financial structure. If an anarchic regime looks to bring down centralised structures, "stick it to the man" and generally "f*** the system," cryptocurrency seems like the perfect tool. Hence, radicals and extremists are more likely drawn to these decentralised structures.
That said, as cryptocurrencies attract more mainstream adoption, digital assets are starting to contribute to more conservative political campaigns.
US Presidential hopeful Vivek Ramaswamy has developed a crypto plan in his political armoury. The Republican candidate aims to reduce the federal government's size and establish a regulatory structure for crypto, which will see tokens being regarded as commodities, away from the SEC's purview. Some 50% of the federal workforce could be cut under Ramaswamy, including the SEC.
Support for software developers and unhosted digital wallets are also involved in Ramaswamy's plans, whilst stablecoin issuers will have access to Federal Reserve facilities.
"What we're going to have is rescinding any of those regulations that are allowing the regulatory state to go after perfectly legal behaviour, but by claiming that somehow it shouldn't exist because they don't like it. All of that can end on my watch," Ramaswamy told CoinDesk.
But again, with Ramaswamy's pro-crypto policies come a slew of right-wing views including climate change denial, state-level bans on abortion, and military intervention against Mexico's drug dealers. For some, these could also be branded as radical.
Ramaswamy's politics might not be as extreme as Milei's but the parallel of "radical" policies being juxtaposed with pro-crypto policies is certainly there.
Just like it's not for us to tell you what to invest in, it's likewise not for us to tell you who to vote for. Perhaps you might support Milei's or Ramaswamy's policies that extend beyond crypto. However, it's too easy to disregard these candidates' other policies just because of their pro-crypto stance.
The crypto industry should not be blinded by political candidates' pro-crypto stance and should not rejoice in their success primarily because of it. Milei's Presidential win resulted in a pump in Bitcoin and whilst his appointment will likely enhance Argentina's crypto scene, we must consider whether we support his other policies before we celebrate his victory.
In time, we hope to see less radical candidates adopt crypto in their political campaigns, which can align with all political persuasions. After all, the benefits of crypto are universal, and certainly not restricted to the far right.
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