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Florida Sting Nabs Alleged Bitcoin Money Launderers
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Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Ninja
2/10/2014 | 4:32:20 PM
Chromebooks have arrived
When the crypocurrency crowd starts using Chromebooks, that's a sign they approve of the security model.
Gary_EL
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Gary_EL,
User Rank: Apprentice
2/11/2014 | 12:15:27 AM
The Purpose of Bitcoins
Aside for making it easier for spouses to keep secrets from each other, what is the purposes of Bitcoin, other than to attempt to hide criminal activity or to commit tax fraud of one type or other??
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
2/11/2014 | 3:41:45 AM
Re: The Purpose of Bitcoins
@Gary: And, for that matter, why are people complaining about things like the Patriot Act and secret FISA courts and widespread NSA phone and email surveillance?  What are these people hiding?

ಠ__ಠ
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
2/11/2014 | 3:44:27 AM
Re: Chromebooks have arrived
@Thomas: How big an endorsement is this really, though?  After all, he got arrested.  ;)
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
2/11/2014 | 3:55:14 AM
Hmm...
FWIW, I have to wonder about the moral and legal implications of the setup here on Reid and Espinoza, and what was really going on.  It appears, from the description in the article of the chronology of events, that Reid was not told about the "stolen credit card numbers" until the second meet.  And that (if I am understanding correctly) he was not explicitly told that the money he was changing came directly from stolen credit card numbers until the third meet.

So imagine if you're a totally innocent person in that situation.

Imagine thinking, "Oh, crap, this guy's a criminal.  And I've already done business with him and changed money for him.  And he knows me."

Would you be brave enough to say no?

Maybe I'm being more of an apologist than Reid and Espinoza deserve.  Maybe they're truly bad guys and they were all too happy to help launder money for profit.

Regardless of the situation with these two particular defendants, however, this sequence of events suggests that officials just wanted a bust -- and didn't care if they got a "real" bad guy or just a scared innocent in over his head.
Whoopty
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Whoopty,
User Rank: Ninja
2/11/2014 | 8:16:17 AM
Impact
I wonder what impact this news had on the current bitcoin value slump compared to the Mt Gox halting of withdrawals? 
Ariella
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Ariella,
User Rank: Apprentice
2/11/2014 | 8:50:59 AM
Re: Impact
@Whoopty it's still worth far more than it was this past summer, and if you had bought it earlier, you'd have made an even bigger killing. However, the huge fluctuations that can make it appealing as an instrument of speculation are not working in favor of it becoming adopted as a mainstream currency. 
Lorna Garey
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Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Ninja
2/11/2014 | 2:14:39 PM
Re: Impact
Exactly - Bitcoins seem more akin to buying a stock than to currency. Even that analogy is flawed though because a share of stock, like a greenback, has something behind it, even if that "something" is an intangible "full faith and credit" promise that the GOP House doesn't seem to think means much.

What exactly is behind a Bitcoin?
Ariella
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Ariella,
User Rank: Apprentice
2/11/2014 | 2:33:30 PM
Re: Impact
@Lorna

Satoshi Nakamoto (though that is not the real name) is the creator of Bitcoin.  His Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System laid the groundwork for the system.  What is particularly telling is the reference to trust at the end: "We have proposed a system for electronic transactions without relying on trust."  Bitcoin, does, nevertheless, seem to indicate a form of trust in numbers, or, more precisely strength in numbers, for that is the translation of  "Vires in Numeris," the motto that appears on Casascius. Coins. 
Lorna Garey
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Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Ninja
2/11/2014 | 2:37:23 PM
Re: Impact
So in other words, it's a reverse pyramid scheme?
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