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  • Hey this is Steve Good on The Coin Chat with my co-host Yuri Cataldo and today

  • we are with a presidential candidate who's also a big fan of blockchain

  • Andrew Yang. Andrew welcome to the show it's great to have you on. Thank you for

  • having me both of you it's a pleasure to be here.

  • Fantastic. Thank you for joining us. So I am joining from my home, I was joking with the guys its my kid's

  • room. Even presidential candidates have to hide from their family sometimes.

  • Don't we all. I'm hiding behind a green screen here. I'm just glad I have a family to hide from. True!

  • So I think it's great to have you on the show really you know thank

  • you so much for taking the time out I know you're a busy guy you're out you've

  • got a lot of things to do to raise awareness of your your presidential

  • candidacy and generating all that interest and you know I think for Yuri

  • and I we just wanted to have a chance to talk with you and to help

  • you raise a bit of awareness around your campaign and kind of get to know a

  • little bit about what you're doing of course from our perspective we'd love to

  • hear a lot more about your interests in your your view on blockchain and we've

  • got some questions we've put together for you, to just you know, to have

  • an open discussion and just kind of hear where it's all going to go and

  • what you see is happening. Well thank you for that and thank you for sensing that

  • we're incredibly aligned where my vision of the economy is very consistent with

  • the people who are in the cryptocurrency community and are working on blockchain

  • advancements where we need to move towards a more decentralized system for

  • sure that's more transparent and blockchain you know it's like many other

  • technologies where it's going to have its drawbacks at various times but the

  • long-term potential is staggering. And really the reason I fell

  • into so many friends in the community is that I found that approximately

  • 99% of people in the blockchain community are pro Universal Basic Income

  • which as you may know is the central pillar of my campaign. Yes. So I arrived

  • at that through the reality that we are automating away millions of American

  • jobs we've already automated away four

  • million manufacturing jobs leading to Donald Trump's election in 2016 and now

  • we need to start evolving and to me moving toward the blockchain is part of

  • that evolution so one of the things we're looking at right now is we could

  • potentially enable voting on the blockchain in a way that would free

  • people up from these lines at poll stations and all these systems that

  • everyone's like not even sure if they're getting attacked by the Russians and the

  • rest of it. I was just at a meeting of people who are looking to

  • distribute universal basic income on the blockchain which I think is where it

  • will go eventually I'm also for the implementation of a national digital

  • currency to supplement the dollar because there are many many things that

  • we could do that the dollar cannot do so this campaign really and one of the

  • jokes I tell is that people sometimes call me a futurist but I believe I'm a

  • present-ist it's just that most of the politicians are stuck in the past

  • because that's just their experience. For sure. For me I've been a serial

  • entrepreneur I've worked in technology for about 20 years and I know what's

  • possible so with people like you hopefully we can spread that word to

  • people around the country. So its an interesting point

  • that you made least a couple of comments and in this that I wanted to pick up on one

  • was the transparency which as you probably know with cryptocurrency when

  • you get into privacy coins it creates some interesting dilemmas especially for

  • the IRS and for tax. The other thing that I'm wondering about so I'm just gonna

  • ask you these two things together is that is that you know I'm based in

  • London by the way Yuri's based in Boston. So as an outsider that spent most of my

  • last two years in the crypto world as an adviser to other companies what I've

  • seen is a complete absence of the U.S. being really present

  • mostly because of regulation because of the SEC and I'm just wondering if you

  • have any particular views on how we can open up the potential channels for

  • allowing the U.S. to really thrive in a cryptocurrency community or a crypto

  • community a blockchain community when there's been so much that's restricted

  • America while we've seen China and Korea and Japan and India and

  • some parts of Europe just thrive, Russia, thriving because you know

  • technology and people have been able to really get into it and I've seen the

  • U.S. just kind of fall behind on some respects. Do you have any you know

  • thoughts on privacy and its impact on tax and also how we can open up the

  • channels to really open up the doors for more innovation in crypto and

  • blockchain for the U.S? You know I think the second point is so key where people

  • think of America is like the hotbed of innovation and technology when in

  • reality the American, certainly the political system, is quite backward and

  • retrograde and incredibly bureaucratic and you can see it with the blockchain

  • and other crypto currencies where the U.S. is essentially throwing its hands

  • up and been like you know don't really have an approach here and so as a result

  • certainly there are many people in America who are making use of crypto

  • currencies but it's a it's not as supported and there's a lot more

  • confusion in the u.s. because the place is not as forward-looking. So I hope to

  • be able to change that I mean as President I believe I can start to move

  • America forward and one of one of the other jokes I tell is that the opposite

  • of Donald Trump is an Asian man who likes...his goal is to freeze time and

  • turn the clock backwards and we need to accelerate time and move it forwards and

  • that includes certainly having a much more intelligent approach to the

  • blockchain and other technologies that would really so I think the other thing

  • that's going on in the U.S. that's very painful to admit is that there's just a

  • lot of rent-seeking in the US and the truth is if you had the blockchain and

  • other technology as fully revved up then you would end up disintermediating

  • accounting firms and law firms and financial institutions

  • and those substitutions really control much of the American system where no one

  • wants to let anything out that's going to end up disrupting their revenue streams

  • Interesting. Yuri over to you. So I...you're one of the few presidential

  • candidates who are accepting crypto currencies on on your site which i think

  • is amazing and you yourself have mentioned on your website that

  • campaign donors have to register and also not to share your wallet address so

  • that people can't make untraceable donations. I'd like to hear your thoughts

  • on how this could eventually maybe affect politics in the future

  • because a lot of people who...A lot of people believe that when they hear Bitcoin or

  • blockchain or crypto currencies they think of launderers, your money

  • launderers drug dealers and then dark money so how would you approach this

  • idea of getting cryptocurrencies involved without that dark money aspect?

  • Yeah and hopefully like even my campaign can be an example of this where if it's

  • simply an exchange of value there's nothing sinister about it and certainly

  • for us I joke that you could donate chickens to my campaign as long as I

  • knew that it was you and like you know chickens are worth a certain amount. So you can't just

  • anonymously donate Ether or a Bitcoin to our campaign from SEC rulings

  • like you have to tell us who you are and if we were to get something anonymous

  • then unfortunately we couldn't make use of it so that would sort of defeat the

  • purpose but hopefully my campaign can shine a light on the fact that this is a

  • great way to exchange value and transfer value to another party and that

  • you know my campaigns are already collected thousands of dollars and

  • cryptocurrency donations and we hope that continues

  • it's something you know I've always want to demonstrate I'm very very

  • aligned with the values of the community and so hopefully like you said like we

  • can disabuse people of the notions that like anything to do with cryptocurrency

  • means you're you know a drug dealer or something. So you know the fact that you

  • have the you know Bitcoin mentioned on your website

  • is interesting because one of the things that we've seen running a YouTube show

  • having website and all the rest is because of the word cryptocurrency or

  • Bitcoin anywhere through any of our channels

  • we can't advertise anything and I'm wondering do you have the same problems

  • having a website that has we accept Bitcoin causing you any problems with

  • advertising and generally for all the rest of us, if you're not having any

  • problems, if for the rest of us who are struggling to just run any form of

  • advertising on anything that we do what's your thought on that about how

  • much we're being blocked from talking about what we're doing and how we're

  • educating people in crypto or blockchain? Well that's really interesting I didn't

  • realize that because we haven't had those problems and it could be because

  • we have one page that says Bitcoin and we have like hundreds of... Could be. But those

  • restrictions are very interesting there are you know, I'm scratching my

  • head thinking like why those restrictions exist that you know like I

  • can imagine some rationale I'm sure that whatever is being done is overly broad.

  • Yeah I did a facebook live video today. It was less than five minutes

  • long and it was a quick explainer video for people to just understand how does

  • mining work why it's not a Ponzi scheme and what the mechanisms are for using

  • computers to mine and to verify transactions like the way a bank does.

  • That was it. Our marketing team attempted to go ahead and just you know promote it

  • on Facebook to make it more widely seen. Blocked. Not allowed. We have not been

  • able to advertise anything on our channels across Twitter, Instagram

  • Facebook, YouTube. Same companies again and again here it's Facebook its

  • Twitter its Google and I'm just wondering you

  • know at what point do we kind of open this up a little bit so that you know we

  • have to draw a line somewhere but you know it just seems to me that...

  • I mean like one that surprises me but two it shows just how much clout and

  • distribution power is concentrating in the hands of a handful of platforms. Yes.

  • And in a way what it does it highlights the rationale for the blockchain and Bitcoin and other

  • cryptocurrencies to begin with which is that you're trying to like create a more

  • decentralized you know system that doesn't rely upon like five

  • institutions or one institution or one government or whatever it is.

  • That's right. ...to approve. So in a way this is like you know proof positive of the

  • rationale for the importance of your work it's unfortunate that we

  • unfortunately are beholden to a handful of tech platforms to get the word out

  • and certainly as the presidential candidate I mean I've got a social media

  • team and we're like you know Instagram living and the rest of it so I get it

  • and if you're not on these platforms and it's like you don't exist so you know so

  • entrepreneurs out there in a way what we need is we need some more decentralized

  • social media platforms though I don't know how you do that because of the fact

  • that ubiquity in that context obviously ends up driving utility. There's

  • definitely a number of them on the way I've come across a few of them myself

  • and there's a range of things that they're trying to do to create a

  • decentralized environment for social media and they run into similar problems

  • around mostly around privacy because they don't want to hold the data but in

  • order for their systems to actually be smart enough for provisioning the

  • data they run into problems of do we hold the data or do we allow the users

  • to control the data and it's an interesting problem because you know

  • we've seen what the Cambridge Analytics problem did to Facebook and so

  • what I see is a lot of these blockchain projects that don't want to go down that

  • path and yet are confronted with sometimes they need some of the data and

  • they're trying to figure out what the line is where the balance is so they're

  • not seen is doing exactly what nobody wants. Thats so interesting.

  • I want to tell you guys a joke that I told at this blockchain event that I spoke at earlier this week

  • Which was someone asked the question why is Bitcoin worth $7,000? And then the response was why is

  • $7,000 worth $7,000? But you know it's because what you're describing

  • really is you know and it took me a little while to get it it took me a

  • little while to understand the ethos of what was possible and what the community

  • is driving towards but I'm convinced that we need to move in that direction

  • as fast as possible that we need to replace this mindset of resource

  • scarcity that is taking over certainly the U.S. in a very dark way and replace it

  • with a mindset of abundance and future orientation and and what is still

  • possible and that the fact that you know we can build a very different kind of

  • society very quickly but we need to get our acts together and this

  • is one of the things I told that Bitcoin folks to so I'm running for president

  • you know and some people probably many of the people listening to this right

  • now well they think themselves wow this guy seems sort of interesting but the

  • but is there's no way he can win. Something along those lines.

  • We've heard that before haven't we? Yes so I'm heading to

  • Iowa for the 8th time next week and what I boil it down to for people is like I'm an

  • Asian guy and Asians are really good at tests. And so it so the question is like

  • what is the test to become President United States? And it turns out there's

  • all of this like media noise and like endorsements there's really only one

  • maybe two tests involved. Can you win the caucus in Iowa and can you win the

  • primary in New Hampshire in February 2020. Now I'm just going to

  • break this down for people listening because the you know it makes people

  • realize what's possible. So Iowa is a state of 3.1 million people but only 5.6%

  • of them participated in the Democratic caucus last time a hundred

  • seventy-one thousand out of 3.1 million. So let's let's make that number

  • 200,000 how many people do we think are going to run for president as a Democrat this cycle?

  • a few dozen 20? 30? Yes so if let's say you have 20 to 30 candidates and you

  • have 200,000 votes how many Iowans do I need to get on my

  • side saying we should get $1,000 a month dividend in order for me to finish the

  • top three in 2020 maybe 25 to 30,000 Iowans. Yeah Yeah top three so when

  • people go through all this and say like hey you know a longshot candidate blah

  • blah blah none of it matters if we can get 30,000 Iowans on board with the idea

  • that them getting $1,000 a month's a good idea and when I go to

  • Iowa I'm already polling. I'm already tied with Kirsten Gillibrand in Iowa

  • of last year because I go to Iowa and I ask people have you noticed

  • stories closing and you're in your towns and they say yes and then I say why is

  • that and then they say Amazon and I'm like that's right and what are you gonna

  • do about it and then they look at me they're like I can do something about it

  • and I was like well if you make me president I'm gonna bring them back at

  • the house and dollars a month to you and you can rebuild your Main Street economy

  • and give your kids a reason to stay and that gets 20% of them thinking yeah like about the only thing we can do.

  • So I'm just presenting this as like vision as to how change is possible much

  • much faster than people think. Sure. Yeah so while you're in Iowa cuz

  • that's interesting the the idea of a universal basic income is something I

  • know that's been floated before but a lot of people are hesitant about it. What

  • are some of the strategies you're using to talk to Iowans about why it's

  • important to do this? Well I talked to them about the fact that Trump's our president

  • because we got rid of 4 million manufacturing jobs including 40,000 in

  • Iowa so they saw that happen and then you say hey what happened

  • the manufacturing jobs we're about to do to your retail jobs, your call center

  • jobs, your food service jobs, your truck driving jobs, all of which are huge

  • employment categories in Iowa and and so then I say look it may seem far out or

  • socialist to you but if you look at our history Thomas

  • Paine was for it Martin Luther King was for