“You’d have to shut down the Internet” to ban Bitcoin, says SEC’s Hester Peirce
"It would be a foolish thing for the government to try to" ban Bitcoin, argued "Crypto Mom" Hester Peirce.
Any of the government’s efforts to ban Bitcoin would be “foolish,” said Hester Peirce (aka “Crypto Mom”), a very Bitcoin-friendly commissioner at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), during a MarketWatch virtual conference earlier this week.
“I think we were past that point very early on because you’d have to shut down the Internet,” Peirce said, adding, “I don’t see how you could ban it. You could certainly make the effort. It would be very hard to stop people from [trading Bitcoin]. So I think it would be a foolish thing for the government to try to do that.”
The statement came on the heels of Ray Dalio, a billionaire investor and founder of Bridgewater Associates, arguing that there’s “a good probability” that governments around the world would ban Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
Dalio told Yahoo Finance:
“Every country treasures its monopoly on controlling the supply and demand. They don’t want other monies to be operating or competing, because things can get out of control. They outlawed gold, that’s why also outlawing Bitcoin is a good probability.”
However, according to Peirce, the main issue for authorities—at least when it comes to cryptocurrencies—is to find an approach to regulation that would be productive and non-restrictive at the same time. She noted:
“We’ve seen other countries take, I would say, a more productive approach. We really need to turn that around. And I’m optimistic, with a new chairman coming in with a deep knowledge of these markets, that is something we could do together—build a good regulatory framework.”
At the same time, Peirce also pointed out that she doesn’t know when—or if—a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) will finally be approved in the U.S. Recently, we’ve seen a new wave of major investment companies, such as Fidelity Investments, SkyBridge Capital, and VanEck, filing their applications for Bitcoin ETFs with the SEC.
The regulator, however, never approved a single filing of this kind so far.