The government is often touted as an entity that guarantees the freedom of its citizens. But the United States’ incarceration rate continues to soar. Today, the country hosts nearly 25% of the world’s prisoners despite having less than 5% of the world’s population. Meanwhile, privacy has become moot as location tracking and unmarked police vehicles become the norm. The government has done nothing to stop this, often passing laws to further restrict freedom.
Luckily, there are some individuals who took it upon their own shoulders to fight for the rights of free people to do as they please. In the past ten years alone, these three individuals have done more to guarantee your freedom than the entire United States government has done in 50 years.
1) Satoshi Nakamoto
Satoshi Nakamoto changed the world forever in January of 2009 by creating Bitcoin. A few months after releasing the whitepaper for his project, Nakamoto mined the first Bitcoin on January 3rd. His goal was to bring about a decentralized, peer-to-peer currency that is beyond the scope of government or other financial institution.
Unlike the other names on this list, Satoshi Nakamoto is actually a pseudonym; nobody knows the true identity of the Bitcoin creator. Several people have claimed to be Satoshi, including Craig Wright, who has faced a great deal of backlash for the statement.
Of course, Bitcoin has evolved drastically since its creation; besides spiking in value from next-to-nothing to over $8,000 today (down 60% from an all-time high of nearly $20,000), Nakamoto’s Bitcoin has guaranteed secure, fast, and easy transactions for millions. It allows a challenge to the central banking system that grips most of the world today, permanently giving users the option to use competing currencies.
Bitcoin has also served as the stepping stone for other coins called altcoins, many of which serve distinct purposes. Some, such as ethereum, create seamless smart contracts that guarantee payment for a service without requiring a mediator. Others, like Stellar, allow for cheap and quick remittance payments to occur without the exorbitant fees and annoying wait times that banks and governments may lay down. The work of Satoshi Nakamoto made this all possible and will continue to shape the world of cryptocurrency for years to come. Whoever he (she?) is, Satoshi has undoubtedly granted you unparalleled monetary freedom.