The latest revolution on the streets of Paris, reminiscent of the student riots of May 1968 March, has been typified on news networks by shots of demonstrators sporting safety vests hurling objects from behind barricades at the police.
Among the Gilets Jaunes, named after the yellow vests they sport, is a majority who took the trip the capital to protest peacefully against president Macron’s political reforms and escalating taxes – the French bete noir. The French will tolerate a lot, but when it comes to taxes, the state’s calling card is everywhere in French society.
The latest development of what has become an ongoing protest by Les Gilets Jaunes across major French cities and also a weekend event in Paris, is the launching of a cryptocurrency. This is remarkable in the sense that as a body, the Gilets Jaunes don’t even recognize themselves as a movement and have no leadership.
However, there is now a website built around the GiletJauneCoin (GJC0) which was reportedly launched at the beginning of the protests two weeks ago. The project itself launched online yesterday and GJC0 is now sitting at a network hash rate of over 2.4Gh/s and reached a block height of close to 40,000.
As yet, the tokens have no intrinsic value and can’t be traded on exchanges. The aim of the launch is unclear due to the decentralized nature of the movement itself, one that refuses to even call itself one but rather sees itself as sporadic assemblies of French citizens with similar gripes about central government.
One spokesman with a clear aim has emerged from the tear gas though. Max Keiser, a financial pundit and cryptocurrency advocate has been tweeting the Yellow Vests to start converting their bank savings into Bitcoin:
If every French person converted 20% of their bank deposits into #Bitcoin (and got a Bitcoin debit card to use for day-2-day stuff), French banks and the government would collapse and a lot of bloodshed could be avoided. #jilletsjaunes #JeSuisSatoshi pic.twitter.com/stKqKHYHWl
— Max Keiser [Jan/3?] (@maxkeiser) December 9, 2018
Keiser’s belief is that a 20% deposit and withdrawal would create a chain reaction among France’s banks which would lead to a banking crisis. In the event that as he predicts Bitcoin prices would escalate this would give the public an incentive of making further withdraws to buy Bitcoin, putting the French banking system in turmoil.
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Image Courtesy: Pixabay