A short story of corn and shit in the global economy and how Charles Hoskinson is scamming Ethiopia.
Part 1 of 3 : The Spectacle of Satoshi
Bitcoin has shaken the world. Its recent price-action has reflected a growing confidence in its decentralized and immutable record-keeping. A 13-year experiment has turned into an underlying asset to usurp gold, silver, and fiat currencies that have gone, for lack of a better word, “brrrr”.
Satoshi Nakamoto, the unknown creator, has catapulted into hearts and memes. At first, gradually, with a dedicated clan of cypherpunks and “HODLers”. But now, suddenly, with investment banks, well-capitalized exchanges, publicly traded S&P 500-indexed companies, and sovereign funds lining up to learn about the fascinating world of mining, cold wallets, and Michael Saylor being bullish AF. You know it’s more than noise when the U.S. Senate confirms Gary Gensler to be the next chair of the Security and Exchanges Commission (SEC). Mainstream retail investors (endearingly called ‘plebs’) sell lame assets and an inflated dollar, to smash-buy and stack sats (a visionary action of purchasing a few satoshis — small amounts of bitcoin — on impulse and hodling on for dear life).
It’s the natural mix of technology fighting back against centralized decision-making, cryptography building an immutable blockchain that can withstand the rule of many, and scarcity principles that govern the contracts of our life. The spectacle before us is indeed sublime.
Once you do the homework, it’s almost self-evident that our record keeping system for store of value is broken. Many might point to Richard Nixon, the 37th President of the United States, removing the United States Dollar from the Gold Standard in 1971 as the genesis block for the collapse. Closing this exchange window created an inflationary fiat currency and a burgeoning gap between classes. The rich, as we see them today in larger towers, with ever increasing net worth, and soon to be colonizing Mars. The poor, with little access to proper nutrition, plenty of simple sugars, as well as the nightmare that is the opioid crisis. And the middle class, going deeper into debt to work deeper into the night to live, on average, one less year.
In the United States, this means the price of lumber and steel far outpaces the official inflation numbers. In Ethiopia, this means that the imported (and domestic) products at the corner store have increased 250% in price since 2013 when I first moved there. And in many more sections of our world, an increasing amount of energy is used for fighting each other. Social media mobs, talking-heads on television, and investments in natural resources are normally factors in these senseless wars.
Bitcoin is really a chance to start over again. Or at least that’s what a growing collective of miners, hodlers, market makers, fund managers, and plebs around the world have convinced themselves into believing. Of the top 10 countries using Bitcoin, 3 are African (Nigeria, Kenya, and South Africa). These humble populations understand the principles of money — often much better than those at the helm of the World Economic Forum. And although government regulations may be strict in these countries, Know-Your-Customer (KYC) procedures required by exchanges and custodians are often easy to side-step.
The Bitcoin thesis of buying and hodling the best money there is, is quite simple. And it doesn’t involve the inflationary bargains and centralized burdens of what is referred to as altcoins (a.k.a. shitcoins) by the bitcoin community.
There are more than 5,000 altcoins/ useless tokens with outlandish and comical names such as Dogecoin. The jokes have gotten so real, that after three months of research, I still can’t conclude whether Milkcoin is a real token that trades on an exchange, or an elaborate joke. These are roller coasters of high volatility with American college students staking their stimulus checks in hopes to buy a Lambo before the summer. Anyone stuck in a basement these past few months will find great entertainment and profit off products and services that have yet to fully prove themselves. For example, “smart contracts” is a term that gets thrown around with certainty, yet, the application has yet to present itself where it matters most.
PART 1: SOURCES AND CITATIONS
- Another name for Bitcoin is Corn, why? — Bitcointalk.org (Professor Bitcoin, 2018)
- What is Shitcoin? — Investopedia (Jake Frankenfield, 2020)
- Money printer go Brrr — github.com/memetic-institute (Institute for Memetic Research and Development, 2020)
- Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash Systems — Bitcoin.org (Satoshi Nakamoto, 2008)
- Gradually, Then Suddenly — NakamotoInstitute.org (Parker Lewis, 2020)
- Introduction to Blockchain and Money — MITOpenCourseWare (Prof. Gary Gensler, 2018)
- Senate Confirmation — United States Senate (Video from Floor of Senate, 2021)
- Nixon and the End of the Bretton Woods System — Department of States (Office of the Historian, 1971–73)
- WTF Happened in 1971? — wft1971.org (email@example.com, 2021)
- American Life Expectancy Dropped by a Full Year in 1st Half of 2020 — NPR (Laurel Wasley, 2021)
- USD to ETB Chart — Xe Currency Chart (xe.com, 2021)
- These 10 Countries Lead the World in Bitcoin Adoption — Decrypt.co (Jose Antonio Lanz, 2020)
- Who Let The Doge(coin) Out? — NPR (Stacey Vanek Smith, 2021)
- Milk and Butter Token Homepage — milktoken.net (firstname.lastname@example.org, 2021)
Part 2 of 3: Fraudulent Fanfare in Ethiopia
And then there are countries like Ethiopia. My native home and the developing economy where I cut my teeth after college. The Ethiopian economy is built like a sleepy lion that periodically turns off the internet access of its citizens. My good friend captured it best:, “Addis Ababa is like an ugly child. You can’t help but still love it.”
The ugly truth here is that there are charlatans in Ethiopia. They exist out in the open. And as we saw with multi-billion dollar exploits, senior members of the government and the business community are basic thieves stealing from their people.
At the epicenter of this tragic comedy is a gentleman named Charles Hoskinson and his Director for Africa, residing in Addis Ababa, John O’Connor. I had the pleasure to be invited to their various Blockchain events including one during their 2018 Addis Ababa visit where they signed a Memorandum of Understanding on blockchain technology… “to trace Ethiopian Coffee along the value chain” with the Government of Ethiopia through its Ministry of Science and Technology. Cardano, a cryptocurrency platform, is instead a cohort of criminals (Cardano Foundation, EMURGO, IOHK, and Input Output) not only because of the Howey Test. And not only because they would fall under an “Affinity Frauds”— although regulators should look here too if they are investigating elaborate cryptocurrency ponzi schemes. What I care most about is the time-critical assignments that they are making a mockery of in Ethiopia.
According to the Ethiopian Ministry of Peace, National ID Cards in Ethiopia were to be developed by IOHK/ Cardano Foundation. But as recently as February 2021, the subreddit r/Cardano removed its claim that Ethiopia had started issuing Digital Identity. Adding insult to injury, it seems as though Cardano and its cohort have released additional news wires to confirm that they have not, in fact, been contracted by the Ministry of Peace.
Then in early April 2021, we saw more smoke and mirrors, through the same newswire, about a leak from Charles Hoskinson himself and a picture-coded message on Twitter alluding to a signature with, presumably, an unidentified Minister in Ethiopia. And in late April 2021, we are seeing more empty promises through a highly promoted Africa conference with ICE Addis as the Ethiopian partner and after three years, no deliverables in sight.
Affinity Frauds normally claim to have groundbreaking investments, partnerships, and innovations. Bernie Madoff is a memorable fraudster who for several decades stole money until a bear market exposed his criminal lack of fiduciary responsibility. While Cardano and Charles Hoskinson are referred to as “a Soul in Hell”, a chilling number of social media bots, amateur marketing agents, and over-zealous brand ambassadors speak like robots as to why 1 equals 100. In Ethiopia, they have yet to register a Sole Proprietorship, a Private Limited Company, a Share Company, a Project Office, or a Civil Service/ Society.
Yet John O’Conner remains in Addis Ababa to host conferences and “educate” programmers on software languages that may very well be useless. In the Amharic language, the word to use for these scammers is “ሌባ” or “leba”. Charles Hoskinson and John O’Connor are stealing the most precious resource of Ethiopia’s young population: its time.
After leaving Ethereum under shady circumstances, Charles Hoskinson has continued to build a terrible reputation that precedes him from early investors he scammed in Japan in February 2017. He is helplessly at the center of a USD 40 billion house of cards after printing 31 billion Cardano (ADA) tokens — with 14 billion remaining to be dumped on an unsuspecting market of retail investors. And although he may not be directly milking Ethiopia of its foreign currency, he is indirectly contributing to my country’s non-existent role in global finance and a childish ethos of ethnic borders beyond sovereign human rights. Charles Hoskinson, and snake oil salesmen like him, are bad news for Ethiopia.
PART 2: SOURCES AND CITATIONS
- US Businessmen are close to exploiting Ethiopia’s oil plans in a multi billion-dollar scheme — Quartz Africa (Zecharias Zelalem, 2020)
- TechTalk with Solomon S14 Ep3 — የክሪፕቶከረንሲ የማጭበርበር ተግባራት | Cryptocurrency Scams — EBS YouTube (Solomon Kassa, 2018)
- Charles Hoskinson — Wikipedia (Wikipedia.org, 2021)
- John O’Connor — LinkedIn (linkedin.com/in/jjtoconnor, 2021)
- Blockchain Technology to Debut in Ethiopia — The Reporter Ethiopia (Hiwot Abebe, 2018)
- Cardano Founder Launches Enterprise Blockchain Framework in Collaboration with Ethiopian Government — Forbes (Rachel Wolfson, 2019)
- Ethiopian Gov’t Signs Agreement with Cardano to Introduce Blockchain in Agritech — Cointelegraph (Helen Partz, 2018)
- Framework for “Investment Contract” Analysis of Digital Assets — U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (sec.gov, 2019)
- Ethiopia launches national identification system based on Cardano Blockchain — Addis Herald (addisherald.com, 2021)
- Ethiopia starts issuing Digital Identity — r/Cardano (reddit.com/r/cardano, 2021)
- Ethiopia launches national identification system — Cardano not involved! — Crypto News Flash (Jake Simmons, 2021)
- Hoskinson leads that Cardano-Ethiopia deal was signed by Minister — Crypto News Flash (Jake Simmons, 2021)
- Cardano-Ethiopia Special Event to Take Place on April 29 — Coinquora (Collins Adane, 2021)
- Cardano’ a Charles Hoskinson: A Soul in Hell? — Decrypt.co (Adriana Hamacher, 2019)
- IOHK | Ethiopia’s First Blockchain Forum Presentation — IOHK YouTube (John O’Connor & Charles Hoskinson, 2018)
- AMA with Charles Hoskinson (including comments on Ethereum and Vitalik) — r/Ethereum (reddit.com/r/ethereum, 2019)
- Adacoin, is bittrex listing a scam? — Steemit (hitlerdoge, 2017)
- Out of the Ether: A Crisis of Irresponsible Governance Facing Ethereum Classic — Medium (Classic Ether, 2017)
- Boxing with Shadows: Is Charles Hoskinson His Own Worst Enemy? — BreakerMag (David Z. Morris, 2019)
- Ethiopia is set to end its $3.6 billion oil deal with a controversial US firm after probe — Quartz Africa (Zecharias Zelalem, 2021)
Part 3 of 3: Pending Actions by the Government of Ethiopia
Given the above, I strongly implore the Government of Ethiopia to;
- Perform a due diligence on IOHK/ Input Output/ Cardano/ and related partners.
- Perform a personal background check on Charles Hoskinson and John O’Connor and Jeremy Firster.
- Formally evaluate an Audited Financial Statement for IOHK, Input Output, Cardano Foundation, and related partners.
- Request a Technical Proposal and a Financial Proposal as per the tendering/ bidding regulations under the FDRE Public Procurement & Property Administration Agency.
- Investigate and make public the actions and inactions of senior officials at the Ministry of Innovation and Technology (formerly known as the Ministry of Science and Technology (MoST) previously led by “Dr. Eng.” Getahun Mekuria and presently led by Dr. Abraham Belay Berhe. This task is especially important as it relates to assignments for Agro-Processing and Value Chain purposes.
- Investigate and make public the actions and inactions of senior officials at the Ministry of Peace that may have had binding or non-binding agreements with Charles Hoskinson and his cohort of criminals. This task is especially important as it relates to assignments for National ID Card purposes.