Halfway through my trip here in Bolivia, I’ve started to get a better sense of what has changed and what hasn’t since I was last here four years ago. There’s been a very noticeable uptick in real estate investment and the social classes are increasingly de-segregated in everyday activities (awesome to see). However, countless aspects of daily life remain shockingly backward, rule of law is virtually absent, and it seems that 2019 will be a critical year for the country as the current President, Evo Morales, seeks re-election for an unprecedented fourth term(!). With the prospect of a government that looks as if it is poised to ramp up its authoritarian-style rule, it is my sense that the country is unfortunately inching toward a Venezula-like level of unrest and chaos. It pains me to watch the country that has always been my second home go in this direction.
However, crypto, which is outlawed in the country (surprise!), exists as a tool for citizens to take control of their money in a censorship-resistant way. Next week I will dive further into what has brought the country to where it is now, and how I believe crypto adoption will help the average citizen retain power and dignity in the face of a potential future dictatorship.
I don’t mean to end my first calendar year of blogging on a downer – quite the opposite. I believe crypto, built on still very nascent blockchain technology, provides hope and has a crucial role to play today that can impact billions living under authoritarian rule. Stay tuned for the deep dive next week and Happy New Year to all!