More on Web3 & Crypto
1 year ago
Why Is Blockchain So Popular?
What is Bitcoin?
The blockchain is a shared, immutable ledger that helps businesses record transactions and track assets. The blockchain can track tangible assets like cars, houses, and land. Tangible assets like intellectual property can also be tracked on the blockchain.
Imagine a blockchain as a distributed database split among computer nodes. A blockchain stores data in blocks. When a block is full, it is closed and linked to the next. As a result, all subsequent information is compiled into a new block that will be added to the chain once it is filled.
The blockchain is designed so that adding a transaction requires consensus. That means a majority of network nodes must approve a transaction. No single authority can control transactions on the blockchain. The network nodes use cryptographic keys and passwords to validate each other's transactions.
The blockchain was not as popular in 1991 when Stuart Haber and W. Scott Stornetta worked on it. The blocks were designed to prevent tampering with document timestamps. Stuart Haber and W. Scott Stornetta improved their work in 1992 by using Merkle trees to increase efficiency and collect more documents on a single block.
In 2004, he developed Reusable Proof of Work. This system allows users to verify token transfers in real time. Satoshi Nakamoto invented distributed blockchains in 2008. He improved the blockchain design so that new blocks could be added to the chain without being signed by trusted parties.
Satoshi Nakomoto mined the first Bitcoin block in 2009, earning 50 Bitcoins. Then, in 2013, Vitalik Buterin stated that Bitcoin needed a scripting language for building decentralized applications. He then created Ethereum, a new blockchain-based platform for decentralized apps. Since the Ethereum launch in 2015, different blockchain platforms have been launched: from Hyperledger by Linux Foundation, EOS.IO by block.one, IOTA, NEO and Monero dash blockchain. The block chain industry is still growing, and so are the businesses built on them.
The Blockchain is made up of many parts:
1. Node: The node is split into two parts: full and partial. The full node has the authority to validate, accept, or reject any transaction. Partial nodes or lightweight nodes only keep the transaction's hash value. It doesn't keep a full copy of the blockchain, so it has limited storage and processing power.
2. Ledger: A public database of information. A ledger can be public, decentralized, or distributed. Anyone on the blockchain can access the public ledger and add data to it. It allows each node to participate in every transaction. The distributed ledger copies the database to all nodes. A group of nodes can verify transactions or add data blocks to the blockchain.
3. Wallet: A blockchain wallet allows users to send, receive, store, and exchange digital assets, as well as monitor and manage their value. Wallets come in two flavors: hardware and software. Online or offline wallets exist. Online or hot wallets are used when online. Without an internet connection, offline wallets like paper and hardware wallets can store private keys and sign transactions. Wallets generally secure transactions with a private key and wallet address.
4. Nonce: A nonce is a short term for a "number used once''. It describes a unique random number. Nonces are frequently generated to modify cryptographic results. A nonce is a number that changes over time and is used to prevent value reuse. To prevent document reproduction, it can be a timestamp. A cryptographic hash function can also use it to vary input. Nonces can be used for authentication, hashing, or even electronic signatures.
5. Hash: A hash is a mathematical function that converts inputs of arbitrary length to outputs of fixed length. That is, regardless of file size, the hash will remain unique. A hash cannot generate input from hashed output, but it can identify a file. Hashes can be used to verify message integrity and authenticate data. Cryptographic hash functions add security to standard hash functions, making it difficult to decipher message contents or track senders.
Blockchain: Pros and Cons
The blockchain provides a trustworthy, secure, and trackable platform for business transactions quickly and affordably. The blockchain reduces paperwork, documentation errors, and the need for third parties to verify transactions.
Blockchain security relies on a system of unaltered transaction records with end-to-end encryption, reducing fraud and unauthorized activity. The blockchain also helps verify the authenticity of items like farm food, medicines, and even employee certification. The ability to control data gives users a level of privacy that no other platform can match.
In the case of Bitcoin, the blockchain can only handle seven transactions per second. Unlike Hyperledger and Visa, which can handle ten thousand transactions per second. Also, each participant node must verify and approve transactions, slowing down exchanges and limiting scalability.
The blockchain requires a lot of energy to run. In addition, the blockchain is not a hugely distributable system and it is destructible. The security of the block chain can be compromised by hackers; it is not completely foolproof. Also, since blockchain entries are immutable, data cannot be removed. The blockchain's high energy consumption and limited scalability reduce its efficiency.
Why Is Blockchain So Popular?
The blockchain is a technology giant. In 2018, 90% of US and European banks began exploring blockchain's potential. In 2021, 24% of companies are expected to invest $5 million to $10 million in blockchain. By the end of 2024, it is expected that corporations will spend $20 billion annually on blockchain technical services.
Blockchain is used in cryptocurrency, medical records storage, identity verification, election voting, security, agriculture, business, and many other fields. The blockchain offers a more secure, decentralized, and less corrupt system of making global payments, which cryptocurrency enthusiasts love. Users who want to save time and energy prefer it because it is faster and less bureaucratic than banking and healthcare systems.
Most organizations have jumped on the blockchain bandwagon, and for good reason: the blockchain industry has never had more potential. The launch of IBM's Blockchain Wire, Paystack, Aza Finance and Bloom are visible proof of the wonders that the blockchain has done. The blockchain's cryptocurrency segment may not be as popular in the future as the blockchain's other segments, as evidenced by the various industries where it is used. The blockchain is here to stay, and it will be discussed for a long time, not just in tech, but in many industries.
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7 months ago
The Real Value of Carbon Credit (Climate Coin Investment)
Disclaimer : This is not financial advice for any investment.
You might not have realized it, but as we move toward net zero carbon emissions, the globe is already at war.
According to the Paris Agreement of COP26, 64% of nations have already declared net zero, and the issue of carbon reduction has already become so important for businesses that it affects their ability to survive. Furthermore, the time when carbon emission standards will be defined and controlled on an individual basis is becoming closer.
Since 2017, the market for carbon credits has experienced extraordinary expansion as a result of widespread talks about carbon credits. The carbon credit market is predicted to expand much more once net zero is implemented and carbon emission rules inevitably tighten.
Hello! Ben here from Nonce Classic. Nonce Classic has recently confirmed the tremendous growth potential of the carbon credit market in the midst of a major trend towards the global goal of net zero (carbon emissions caused by humans — carbon reduction by humans = 0 ). Moreover, we too believed that the questions and issues the carbon credit market suffered from the last 30–40yrs could be perfectly answered through crypto technology and that is why we have added a carbon credit crypto project to the Nonce Classic portfolio. There have been many teams out there that have tried to solve environmental problems through crypto but very few that have measurable experience working in the carbon credit scene. Thus we have put in our efforts to find projects that are not crypto projects created for the sake of issuing tokens but projects that pragmatically use crypto technology to combat climate change by solving problems of the current carbon credit market. In that process, we came to hear of Climate Coin, a veritable carbon credit crypto project, and us Nonce Classic as an accelerator, have begun contributing to its growth and invested in its tokens. Starting with this article, we plan to publish a series of articles explaining why the carbon credit market is bullish, why we invested in Climate Coin, and what kind of project Climate Coin is specifically. In this first article let us understand the carbon credit market and look into its growth potential! Let’s begin :)
The Unavoidable Entry of the Net Zero Era
Net zero means... Human carbon emissions are balanced by carbon reduction efforts. A non-environmentalist may find it hard to accept that net zero is attainable by 2050. Global cooperation to save the earth is happening faster than we imagine.
In the Paris Agreement of COP26, concluded in Glasgow, UK on Oct. 31, 2021, nations pledged to reduce worldwide yearly greenhouse gas emissions by more than 50% by 2030 and attain net zero by 2050. Governments throughout the world have pledged net zero at the national level and are holding each other accountable by submitting Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) every five years to assess implementation. 127 of 198 nations have declared net zero.
Each country's 1.5-degree reduction plans have led to carbon reduction obligations for companies. In places with the strictest environmental regulations, like the EU, companies often face bankruptcy because the cost of buying carbon credits to meet their carbon allowances exceeds their operating profits. In this day and age, minimizing carbon emissions and securing carbon credits are crucial.
Recent SEC actions on climate change may increase companies' concerns about reducing emissions. The SEC required all U.S. stock market companies to disclose their annual greenhouse gas emissions and climate change impact on March 21, 2022. The SEC prepared the proposed regulation through in-depth analysis and stakeholder input since last year. Three out of four SEC members agreed that it should pass without major changes. If the regulation passes, it will affect not only US companies, but also countless companies around the world, directly or indirectly.
Even companies not listed on the U.S. stock market will be affected and, in most cases, required to disclose emissions. Companies listed on the U.S. stock market with significant greenhouse gas emissions or specific targets are subject to stricter emission standards (Scope 3) and disclosure obligations, which will magnify investigations into all related companies. Greenhouse gas emissions can be calculated three ways. Scope 1 measures carbon emissions from a company's facilities and transportation. Scope 2 measures carbon emissions from energy purchases. Scope 3 covers all indirect emissions from a company's value chains.
The SEC's proposed carbon emission disclosure mandate and regulations are one example of how carbon credit policies can cross borders and affect all parties. As such incidents will continue throughout the implementation of net zero, even companies that are not immediately obligated to disclose their carbon emissions must be prepared to respond to changes in carbon emission laws and policies.
Carbon reduction obligations will soon become individual. Individual consumption has increased dramatically with improved quality of life and convenience, despite national and corporate efforts to reduce carbon emissions. Since consumption is directly related to carbon emissions, increasing consumption increases carbon emissions. Countries around the world have agreed that to achieve net zero, carbon emissions must be reduced on an individual level. Solutions to individual carbon reduction are being actively discussed and studied under the term Personal Carbon Trading (PCT).
PCT is a system that allows individuals to trade carbon emission quotas in the form of carbon credits. Individuals who emit more carbon than their allotment can buy carbon credits from those who emit less. European cities with well-established carbon credit markets are preparing for net zero by conducting early carbon reduction prototype projects. The era of checking product labels for carbon footprints, choosing low-emissions transportation, and worrying about hot shower emissions is closer than we think.
The Market for Carbon Credits Is Expanding Fearfully
Compliance and voluntary carbon markets make up the carbon credit market.
A Compliance Market enforces carbon emission allowances for actors. Companies in industries that previously emitted a lot of carbon are included in the mandatory carbon market, and each government receives carbon credits each year. If a company's emissions are less than the assigned cap and it has extra carbon credits, it can sell them to other companies that have larger emissions and require them (Cap and Trade). The annual number of free emission permits provided to companies is designed to decline, therefore companies' desire for carbon credits will increase. The compliance market's yearly trading volume will exceed $261B in 2020, five times its 2017 level.
In the Voluntary Market, carbon reduction is voluntary and carbon credits are sold for personal reasons or to build market participants' eco-friendly reputations. Even if not in the compliance market, it is typical for a corporation to be obliged to offset its carbon emissions by acquiring voluntary carbon credits. When a company seeks government or company investment, it may be denied because it is not net zero. If a significant shareholder declares net zero, the companies below it must execute it. As the world moves toward ESG management, becoming an eco-friendly company is no longer a strategic choice to gain a competitive edge, but an important precaution to not fall behind. Due to this eco-friendly trend, the annual market volume of voluntary emission credits will approach $1B by November 2021. The voluntary credit market is anticipated to reach $5B to $50B by 2030. (TSCVM 2021 Report)
This article analyzed how net zero, a target promised by countries around the world to combat climate change, has brought governmental, corporate, and human changes. We discussed how these shifts will become more obvious as we approach net zero, and how the carbon credit market would increase exponentially in response. In the following piece, let's analyze the hurdles impeding the carbon credit market's growth, how the project we invested in tries to tackle these issues, and why we chose Climate Coin. Wait! Jim Skea, co-chair of the IPCC working group, said,
“It’s now or never, if we want to limit global warming to 1.5°C” — Jim Skea
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11 months ago
Why Bill Gates thinks Bitcoin, crypto, and NFTs are foolish
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates assesses digital assets while the bull is caged.
Bill Gates is well-respected.
Reasonably. He co-founded and led Microsoft during its 1980s and 1990s revolution.
After leaving Microsoft, Bill Gates pursued other interests. He and his wife founded one of the world's largest philanthropic organizations, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. He also supports immunizations, population control, and other global health programs.
When Gates criticized Bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, and NFTs, it made news.
Bill Gates said at the 58th Munich Security Conference...
“You have an asset class that’s 100% based on some sort of greater fool theory that somebody’s going to pay more for it than I do.”
Gates means digital assets. Like many bitcoin critics, he says digital coins and tokens are speculative.
And he's not alone. Financial experts have dubbed Bitcoin and other digital assets a "bubble" for a decade.
Gates also made fun of Bored Ape Yacht Club and NFTs, saying, "Obviously pricey digital photographs of monkeys will help the world."
Why does Bill Gates dislike digital assets?
According to Gates' latest comments, Bitcoin, cryptos, and NFTs aren't good ways to hold value.
Bill Gates is a better investor than Elon Musk.
“I’m used to asset classes, like a farm where they have output, or like a company where they make products,” Gates said.
The Guardian claimed in April 2021 that Bill and Melinda Gates owned the most U.S. farms. Over 242,000 acres of farmland.
The Gates couple has enough farmland to cover Hong Kong.
Bill Gates is a classic investor. He wants companies with an excellent track record, strong fundamentals, and good management. Or tangible assets like land and property.
Gates prefers the "old economy" over the "new economy"
Gates' criticism of Bitcoin and cryptocurrency ventures isn't surprising. These digital assets lack all of Gates's investing criteria.
Volatile digital assets include Bitcoin. Their costs might change dramatically in a day. Volatility scares risk-averse investors like Gates.
Gates has a stake in the old financial system. As Microsoft's co-founder, Gates helped develop a dominant tech company.
Because of his business, he's one of the world's richest men.
Bill Gates is invested in protecting the current paradigm.
He won't invest in anything that could destroy the global economy.
When Gates criticizes Bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, and NFTs, he's suggesting they're a hoax. These soapbox speeches are one way he protects his interests.
Digital assets aren't a bad investment, though. Many think they're the future.
Changpeng Zhao and Brian Armstrong are two digital asset billionaires. Two crypto exchange CEOs. Binance/Coinbase.
Digital asset revolution won't end soon.
If you disagree with Bill Gates and plan to invest in Bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, or NFTs, do your own research and understand the risks.
But don’t take Bill Gates’ word for it.
He’s just an old rich guy with a lot of farmland.
He has a lot to lose if Bitcoin and other digital assets gain global popularity.
This post is a summary. Read the full article here.
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8 months ago
The World Will Change With MIT's New Battery
It's cheaper, faster charging, longer lasting, safer, and better for the environment.
Batteries are the future. Next-gen and planet-saving technology, including solar power and EVs, require batteries. As these smart technologies become more popular, we find that our batteries can't keep up. Lithium-ion batteries are expensive, slow to charge, big, fast to decay, flammable, and not environmentally friendly. MIT just created a new battery that eliminates all of these problems. So, is this the battery of the future? Or is there a catch?
When I say entirely new, I mean it. This battery employs no currently available materials. Its electrodes are constructed of aluminium and pure sulfur instead of lithium-complicated ion's metals and graphite. Its electrolyte is formed of molten chloro-aluminate salts, not an organic solution with lithium salts like lithium-ion batteries.
How does this change in materials help?
Aluminum, sulfur, and chloro-aluminate salts are abundant, easy to acquire, and cheap. This battery might be six times cheaper than a lithium-ion battery and use less hazardous mining. The world and our wallets will benefit.
But don’t go thinking this means it lacks performance.
This battery charged in under a minute in tests. At 25 degrees Celsius, the battery will charge 25 times slower than at 110 degrees Celsius. This is because the salt, which has a very low melting point, is in an ideal state at 110 degrees and can carry a charge incredibly quickly. Unlike lithium-ion, this battery self-heats when charging and discharging, therefore no external heating is needed.
Anyone who's seen a lithium-ion battery burst might be surprised. Unlike lithium-ion batteries, none of the components in this new battery can catch fire. Thus, high-temperature charging and discharging speeds pose no concern.
These batteries are long-lasting. Lithium-ion batteries don't last long, as any iPhone owner can attest. During charging, metal forms a dendrite on the electrode. This metal spike will keep growing until it reaches the other end of the battery, short-circuiting it. This is why phone batteries only last a few years and why electric car range decreases over time. This new battery's molten salt slows deposition, extending its life. This helps the environment and our wallets.
These batteries are also energy dense. Some lithium-ion batteries have 270 Wh/kg energy density (volume and mass). Aluminum-sulfur batteries could have 1392 Wh/kg, according to calculations. They'd be 5x more energy dense. Tesla's Model 3 battery would weigh 96 kg instead of 480 kg if this battery were used. This would improve the car's efficiency and handling.
These calculations were for batteries without molten salt electrolyte. Because they don't reflect the exact battery chemistry, they aren't a surefire prediction.
This battery seems great. It will take years, maybe decades, before it reaches the market and makes a difference. Right?
Nope. The project's scientists founded Avanti to develop and market this technology.
So we'll soon be driving cheap, durable, eco-friendly, lightweight, and ultra-safe EVs? Nope.
This battery must be kept hot to keep the salt molten; otherwise, it won't work and will expand and contract, causing damage. This issue could be solved by packs that can rapidly pre-heat, but that project is far off.
Rapid and constant charge-discharge cycles make these batteries ideal for solar farms, homes, and EV charging stations. The battery is constantly being charged or discharged, allowing it to self-heat and maintain an ideal temperature.
These batteries aren't as sexy as those making EVs faster, more efficient, and cheaper. Grid batteries are crucial to our net-zero transition because they allow us to use more low-carbon energy. As we move away from fossil fuels, we'll need millions of these batteries, so the fact that they're cheap, safe, long-lasting, and environmentally friendly will be huge. Who knows, maybe EVs will use this technology one day. MIT has created another world-changing technology.
10 months ago
Humanity is not even a Type 1 civilization. What might a Type 3 be capable of?
The Kardashev scale grades civilizations from Type 1 to Type 3 based on energy harvesting.
How do technologically proficient civilizations emerge across timescales measuring in the tens of thousands or even millions of years? This is a question that worries me as a researcher in the search for “technosignatures” from other civilizations on other worlds. Since it is already established that longer-lived civilizations are the ones we are most likely to detect, knowing something about their prospective evolutionary trajectories could be translated into improved search tactics. But even more than knowing what to seek for, what I really want to know is what happens to a society after so long time. What are they capable of? What do they become?
This was the question Russian SETI pioneer Nikolai Kardashev asked himself back in 1964. His answer was the now-famous “Kardashev Scale.” Kardashev was the first, although not the last, scientist to try and define the processes (or stages) of the evolution of civilizations. Today, I want to launch a series on this question. It is crucial to technosignature studies (of which our NASA team is hard at work), and it is also important for comprehending what might lay ahead for mankind if we manage to get through the bottlenecks we have now.
The Kardashev scale
Kardashev’s question can be expressed another way. What milestones in a civilization’s advancement up the ladder of technical complexity will be universal? The main notion here is that all (or at least most) civilizations will pass through some kind of definable stages as they progress, and some of these steps might be mirrored in how we could identify them. But, while Kardashev’s major focus was identifying signals from exo-civilizations, his scale gave us a clear way to think about their evolution.
The classification scheme Kardashev employed was not based on social systems of ethics because they are something that we can probably never predict about alien cultures. Instead, it was built on energy, which is something near and dear to the heart of everybody trained in physics. Energy use might offer the basis for universal stages of civilisation progression because you cannot do the work of establishing a civilization without consuming energy. So, Kardashev looked at what energy sources were accessible to civilizations as they evolved technologically and used those to build his scale.
From Kardashev’s perspective, there are three primary levels or “types” of advancement in terms of harvesting energy through which a civilization should progress.
Type 1: Civilizations that can capture all the energy resources of their native planet constitute the first stage. This would imply capturing all the light energy that falls on a world from its host star. This makes it reasonable, given solar energy will be the largest source available on most planets where life could form. For example, Earth absorbs hundreds of atomic bombs’ worth of energy from the Sun every second. That is a rather formidable energy source, and a Type 1 race would have all this power at their disposal for civilization construction.
Type 2: These civilizations can extract the whole energy resources of their home star. Nobel Prize-winning scientist Freeman Dyson famously anticipated Kardashev’s thinking on this when he imagined an advanced civilization erecting a large sphere around its star. This “Dyson Sphere” would be a machine the size of the complete solar system for gathering stellar photons and their energy.
Type 3: These super-civilizations could use all the energy produced by all the stars in their home galaxy. A normal galaxy has a few hundred billion stars, so that is a whole lot of energy. One way this may be done is if the civilization covered every star in their galaxy with Dyson spheres, but there could also be more inventive approaches.
Implications of the Kardashev scale
Climbing from Type 1 upward, we travel from the imaginable to the god-like. For example, it is not hard to envisage utilizing lots of big satellites in space to gather solar energy and then beaming that energy down to Earth via microwaves. That would get us to a Type 1 civilization. But creating a Dyson sphere would require chewing up whole planets. How long until we obtain that level of power? How would we have to change to get there? And once we get to Type 3 civilizations, we are virtually thinking about gods with the potential to engineer the entire cosmos.
For me, this is part of the point of the Kardashev scale. Its application for thinking about identifying technosignatures is crucial, but even more strong is its capacity to help us shape our imaginations. The mind might become blank staring across hundreds or thousands of millennia, and so we need tools and guides to focus our attention. That may be the only way to see what life might become — what we might become — once it arises to start out beyond the boundaries of space and time and potential.
This is a summary. Read the full article here.
1 year ago
You Misunderstand the Russian Nuclear Threat
Many believe Putin is simply sabre rattling and intimidating us. They see no threat of nuclear war. We can send NATO troops into Ukraine without risking a nuclear war.
I keep reading that Putin is just using nuclear blackmail and that a strong leader will call the bluff. That, in my opinion, misunderstands the danger of sending NATO into Ukraine.
It assumes that once NATO moves in, Putin can either push the red nuclear button or not.
Sure, Putin won't go nuclear if NATO invades Ukraine. So we're safe? Can't we just move NATO?
No, because history has taught us that wars often escalate far beyond our initial expectations. One domino falls, knocking down another. That's why having clear boundaries is vital. Crossing a seemingly harmless line can set off a chain of events that are unstoppable once started.
One example is WWI. The assassin of Archduke Franz Ferdinand could not have known that his actions would kill millions. They couldn't have known that invading Serbia to punish them for not handing over the accomplices would start a world war. Every action triggered a counter-action, plunging Europe into a brutal and bloody war. Each leader saw their actions as limited, not realizing how they kept the dominos falling.
Nobody can predict the future, but it's easy to imagine how NATO intervention could trigger a chain of events leading to a total war. Let me suggest some outcomes.
NATO creates a no-fly-zone. In retaliation, Russia bombs NATO airfields. Russia may see this as a limited counter-move that shouldn't cause further NATO escalation. They think it's a reasonable response to force NATO out of Ukraine. Nobody has yet thought to use the nuke.
Will NATO act? Polish airfields bombed, will they be stuck? Is this an article 5 event? If so, what should be done?
It could happen. Maybe NATO sends troops into Ukraine to punish Russia. Maybe NATO will bomb Russian airfields.
Putin's response Is bombing Russian airfields an invasion or an attack? Remember that Russia has always used nuclear weapons for defense, not offense. But let's not panic, let's assume Russia doesn't go nuclear.
Maybe Russia retaliates by attacking NATO military bases with planes. Maybe they use ships to attack military targets. How does NATO respond? Will they fight Russia in Ukraine or escalate? Will they invade Russia or attack more military installations there?
Seen the pattern? As each nation responds, smaller limited military operations can grow in scope.
So far, the Russian military has shown that they begin with less brutal methods. As losses and failures increase, brutal means are used. Syria had the same. Assad used chemical weapons and attacked hospitals, schools, residential areas, etc.
A NATO invasion of Ukraine would cost Russia dearly. “Oh, this isn't looking so good, better pull out and finish this war,” do you think? No way. Desperate, they will resort to more brutal tactics. If desperate, Russia has a huge arsenal of ugly weapons. They have nerve agents, chemical weapons, and other nasty stuff.
What happens if Russia uses chemical weapons? What if Russian nerve agents kill NATO soldiers horribly? West calls for retaliation will grow. Will we invade Russia? Will we bomb them?
We are angry and determined to punish war criminal Putin, so NATO tanks may be heading to Moscow. We want vengeance for his chemical attacks and bombing of our cities.
Do you think the distance between that red nuclear button and Putin's finger will be that far once NATO tanks are on their way to Moscow?
We might avoid a nuclear apocalypse. A NATO invasion force or even Western cities may be used by Putin. Not as destructive as ICBMs. Putin may think we won't respond to tactical nukes with a full nuclear counterattack. Why would we risk a nuclear Holocaust by launching ICBMs on Russia?
Maybe. My point is that at every stage of the escalation, one party may underestimate the other's response. This war is spiraling out of control and the chances of a nuclear exchange are increasing. Nobody really wants it.
Fear, anger, and resentment cause it. If Putin and his inner circle decide their time is up, they may no longer care about the rest of the world. We saw it with Hitler. Hitler, seeing the end of his empire, ordered the destruction of Germany. Nobody should win if he couldn't. He wanted to destroy everything, including Paris.
In other words, the danger isn't what happens after NATO intervenes The danger is the potential chain reaction. Gambling has a psychological equivalent. It's best to exit when you've lost less. We humans are willing to take small risks for big rewards. To avoid losses, we are willing to take high risks. Daniel Kahneman describes this behavior in his book Thinking, Fast and Slow.
And so bettors who have lost a lot begin taking bigger risks to make up for it. We get a snowball effect. NATO involvement in the Ukraine conflict is akin to entering a casino and placing a bet. We'll start taking bigger risks as we start losing to Russian retaliation. That's the game's psychology.
It's impossible to stop. So will politicians and citizens from both Russia and the West, until we risk the end of human civilization.
You can avoid spiraling into ever larger bets in the Casino by drawing a hard line and declaring “I will not enter that Casino.” We're doing it now. We supply Ukraine. We send money and intelligence but don't cross that crucial line.
It's difficult to watch what happened in Bucha without demanding NATO involvement. What should we do? Of course, I'm not in charge. I'm a writer. My hope is that people will think about the consequences of the actions we demand. My hope is that you think ahead not just one step but multiple dominos.
More and more, we are driven by our emotions. We cannot act solely on emotion in matters of life and death. If we make the wrong choice, more people will die.
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