Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., announced his plan on Friday to provide universal high-speed internet across the US. The plan, with a $150 billion price tag, would create the infrastructure to bring the internet to every American as a ‘basic human right,’ and potentially be a big boon for Bitcoin.The Senator connected the need for high-speed internet with a similar plan for electricity during the Great Depression.
“High-speed internet service must be treated as the new electricity — a public utility that everyone deserves as a basic human right. And getting online at home, at school, or at work shouldn’t involve long waits, frustrating phone calls, and complex contracts and fees meant to trap and trick consumers.”Bernie Sanders’s plan drew the ire of a number of conservative politicians. The general response dealt with the massive costs that would likely result in seeking to offer these types of services universally. Additionally, the overall consensus among conservatives was negative because of the destruction of the entrepreneurial spirit that created the internet. Simply taking the hard work of these individuals and universalizing it without any sort of remuneration would quickly stifle new innovation. Regardless of the political leaning, universal access to high-speed Internet would be a massive boon for Bitcoin. As a digital currency, Bitcoin requires access to the internet for simple trading and transactions. While government costs may be massive, such a plan would provide access to Bitcoin for the entire country. This may be a small win for local and national government coffers, but the Bitcoin network would certainly bring in users. The virtuous adoption cycle of Bitcoin would mean that, as access and adoption increase, prices would also increase. And, as prices respond to greater usage, more users would certainly move into the space. The irony, of course, is that the inflation the plan would create would probably crush the value of the dollar. This would drive massive numbers of users into Bitcoin, just as it has in Venezuela, Zimbabwe, and other broadly socialist nations.
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