Pierre Rochard: Bitcoin, Sound Money and the Social Good

Published on
December 17th, 2020
63 minutes

Pierre Rochard: Bitcoin, Sound Money and the Social Good

The Interview - Crypto ·
Featuring Pierre Rochard

Published on: December 17th, 2020 • Duration: 63 minutes

Pierre Rochard, Bitcoin Strategist at Kraken, joins Real Vision associate crypto editor Sebastian Moonjava to discuss Bitcoin, the concept of sound money, and the impacts Bitcoin may have on society. Rochard explains a bit about the foundational philosophical ideas behind Bitcoin, including Austrian economics and the Keynesian world view. He touches on the incentivization of development in the Bitcoin space and what he views as some of the most exciting developments occurring today. Rochard ends the discussion describing some of the ways legislators and regulators can improve and help move the Bitcoin space forward. Filmed on December 1, 2020. Key Learnings: Bitcoin is sound money. The impacts of Bitcoin adoption cannot be understated and Rochard explains, in detail, the benefits of this adoption. He provides an explanation as to why a fiat system can be dangerous and why Bitcoin is no longer a fringe asset.



  • DJ
    Daniel J.
    20 January 2021 @ 01:47
    US constitution should be amended for Bitcoin! I really laughed at that one.
  • DJ
    Daniel J.
    20 January 2021 @ 01:37
    If you listen to these guys, Bitcoin literally solves all problems. It can even stop wars!!
  • Sv
    S v.
    13 January 2021 @ 18:46
    Great interview!
  • CH
    Crag H.
    18 December 2020 @ 16:42
    For what it's worth: Pierre's views are not representative of all Bitcoiners. My own "maximalist" standpoint comes from a technological point of view. Not an ideological one. So even though I really appreciate the ethos behind Bitcoin, I don't agree with everything Pierre is putting forth from an ideological standpoint. Just pointing this out as it can be good to keep this in mind when listening to evangelists who don't make clear distinctions between "Bitcoin the technology" and "Bitcoin the movement".
    • JK
      James K.
      22 December 2020 @ 02:18
      Technological enables the ideology so they are inevitably co-related.
    • CH
      Crag H.
      28 December 2020 @ 18:08
      The tech is open for anyone to use. Some will say it's going to free the world from tyranny while others just see it as an internet protocol which enables permissionless value transfer across the world.
  • AH
    Ana H.
    24 December 2020 @ 03:57
    Have a drink any time they say "right" or "like". Is like, too much, right?
  • CC
    Charles C.
    18 December 2020 @ 16:00
    The proliferation of guns in private hands led to the reduction of foreign invasions????
    • GS
      Greg S.
      21 December 2020 @ 08:32
      Yeah I thought that was a ridiculous point to make. Gun ownership levels didn't affect US military invasion in e.g. Afghanistan or Iraq. I think he came across as a fundamentalist at that point.
    • TH
      Tyler H.
      21 December 2020 @ 19:53
      He said firearms have restrained the size and scope of the state.... I think this alludes to the belief that Americans owning guns prevents the US Federal govt from overstepping more so than they already have
    • TH
      Tyler H.
      21 December 2020 @ 19:57
      Ah made it to the end... Question, do you think the US would be pulling out of Afghanistan now if they didn't own guns?
    • GS
      Greg S.
      22 December 2020 @ 04:04
      the decision to pull out of Afghanistan is totally uncorrelated to American gun ownership levels. That's my 2sats.
    • EC
      Edward C.
      22 December 2020 @ 14:35
      Do you think the US would have military bases all over the world if it was restrained by a money with a high stock to flow ratio?
  • WT
    William T.
    21 December 2020 @ 20:21
    From an interview standpoint, this was a little annoying to listen to. The interviewer followed this pattern: 1) ask a question, 2) try to guess the answer the guest might give, and 3) then ask the guest if he agrees with the interviewer’s opinion. It would be much easier to listen to if the interviewer asked a question and then stopped talking to give the guest a chance to answer. My two satoshis, fwiw.
  • SV
    Santiago V. | Contributor
    17 December 2020 @ 22:58
    Interesting view into the mind of Bitcoin maximalism, sound money theory, and anti-Keynesian economic theory from the Austrians. One thing I found odd was the "no one holds USD" comment. I think Mr. Rochard needs to have a good discussion with Mr. Brent Johnson about this proposition around the desire to hold the global reserve currency, particularly in time of monetary crisis. That would be worth watching. Regardless, I found this conversation extremely insightful into the process behind adherents of the protocol and I look forward to hearing more. Thank you Pierre and Sebastian, great interview!
    • TH
      T H.
      18 December 2020 @ 00:02
      I suppose there is some value in understanding the psychological landscape of the space. But, we can still point out that these hard-line ideological perspectives are as prone to the philosophical errors of reductionism as some of the systems they oppose. Sometimes, they are also mixed with red-baiting or revisionist rhetoric, like equating everything else with communism, or, like here, making historically incorrect assertions about inflation being mostly a byproduct to Keynesianism and/or the concept of fiat. These assertions simply aren't true. Look at the Spanish Empire's importation of gold and silver into Europe and the subsequent debasement of currency, for example. That is a case study of hyperinflation within the utopia of Austrian Economics. We can have the monetary revolution without the Robespierre. Danton showed the way.
    • GS
      Greg S.
      21 December 2020 @ 08:49
      @ T.H. interesting comment. Read's like a review of The Bitcoin Standard which I thought was historically revisionist and reductionist when talking about history of sound money.
  • FR
    Faisal R.
    18 December 2020 @ 01:04
    Nice interview. But if someone could respond to the following questions I would highly appreciate: (1) How would a hard money system bail-out thousands of of small businesses after a natural calamity/pandemic etc. if new money can't be printed? Isn't it the case that the most painful economic depressions happened under gold-standard (hard money) system? (2) How would a hard crypto monetary system address extreme inequality when we know that bitcoin ownerships are not equitable? (3) In a deflationary system, nominal wages must decrease over time, how easy would be to make workers accept lower wages?
    • YR
      Yunier R.
      18 December 2020 @ 04:22
      Seems to me you need a class on free market economic systems instead to understand this. I would recommend "Economics in One Lesson" if you're really interesting in understanding this. 2nd I'll recommend "The price of tomorrow" to understand how a deflationary world is better and how it would work.
    • SC
      Sean C.
      18 December 2020 @ 19:50
      Asked a similar question several times, even to Raoul, never get an answer. The short term answers to 1) and 2) obviously have horrific consequences for the majority of the population under a Bitcoin standard. Maybe that's the hard reset though, and what evolves afterwards is a better world!
    • RG
      Rahul G.
      19 December 2020 @ 12:34
      Hi Faisal, These are interesting questions. To answer them, however, in a cogent way would take a long time. One book that can help answer questions two and three would be to read "The Bitcoin Standard" by Saifedean Ammous.
    • FR
      Faisal R.
      21 December 2020 @ 05:16
      Thanks a bunch for your responses; I will try check those books out when possible.
    • GS
      Greg S.
      21 December 2020 @ 08:45
      @rahul. I've just finished the Bitcoin Standard. Where does Saifedean address points 2 and 3? Even though I don't agree with Saifedean's Austrian school analysis of the history of hard money in the first 2/3'rd of the book, the book is mostly that... A history of sound money from an Austrian School perspective. Faisal's pertinent questions are not addressed in the book. That's something that some Austrian School economist can chime in on. Anarcho capitalism would still be subject to massive imbalances of wealth and hierarchies of concentrated economic power with undue influence for the rest of the population that would absolutely encroach on their freedoms. Some aspect of regulation and protection of lowest sectors of societies are still needed. I've personally not seen strong arguments from fundamental libertarians that massive concentrations of wealth wouldn't accumulate and thus create economic power hierarchies. So that debate is an ongoing one but more for economists to battle out.
  • DP
    David P.
    20 December 2020 @ 20:35
    great interview! you should make short clips of it for YouTube. very educative
  • PA
    Paulo A.
    17 December 2020 @ 23:53
    Ash should have interviewed Pierre, no offense to Sebastian, but he clearly still don't understand Bitcoin in a deep enough level
    • LS
      Lewis S.
      18 December 2020 @ 01:28
      I thought he just kind of plays dumb to drive conversation. I liked the way he asserted the questions strongly in this interview.
    • SM
      Sebastian M. | Real Vision
      18 December 2020 @ 15:39
      I would say I understand Bitcoin pretty well :). I am a newer interviewer, so I am still figuring out how to balance the questions so that we can educate the audience. Let me know how I can do better and I will do my best to integrate feedback. I have been in the crypto world since 2013... so I am in no way new to the space.
    • JW
      Jay W.
      19 December 2020 @ 03:30
      I think Sebastian is great and I enjoyed the way he interviewed Pierre
  • LS
    Lewis S.
    18 December 2020 @ 00:55
    'Champagne, yachts - that is wealth because you can use it'. For what though, really? When can wealth be an ecologically regenerated wasteland or not for profit e-waste recycling facility or something?
  • JL
    Julien L.
    17 December 2020 @ 20:46
    I really liked the part about the upcoming developments. I absolutely didn't know the bitcoin protocol could be upgraded to surpass some other cryptocurrencies' features like chainlink (within limits of course).
  • RW
    Richard W.
    17 December 2020 @ 12:55
    Clever, interesting, arrogant
  • FR
    Fulvio R.
    17 December 2020 @ 12:11
    Listening to this while sitting on the floor because I sold all my chairs to buy BTC. I love listening to Pierre the auditor, he's just a great first principle thinker. It drives me nuts when people say that the only advantage of BTC is being the first crypto and the related network effects. The reason why BTC is first in class is because of the way it was conceived and distributed, and because of its monetary policy. Network effects are a by-product of the existence of a global protocol in which we can trade the hardest asset/commodity that humanity has ever seen. He's 100% right in saying that attributing the success of Bitcoin to network effects is tautological. Additionally, I would argue that in cyberspace, where borders are non-existent, you get a winner take all environment in a long-enough timeframe. Hence the whole discussion on altcoins having a space is futile imo. Think about it, if it was not for local laws and governments almost everyone would be trading in USD and T-bills. Dollarization of economies has happened and still happens without fail as soon as a monetary base hyperinflates. Only next time we will have a bitconization. Trade shitcoins, accumulate BTC!