From DeFundme to Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs) - Bizarro World Episode 157

Freezing bank accounts without due process? Pulling school funding for opting out of masks?  It's very obvious that Western governments are becoming increasingly oppressive and authoritarian.

This week features special guest Chris Curl to discuss some of the ways you can use cryptocurrencies to circumvent increasingly authoritarian central authority.

We also talk about the slowing economic growth we're facing and how to position for it.

Sex in the metaverse.

And why gold hit $1,900 for the first time in eight months.

It's all in episode 157 of Bizarro World

Table of Contents

0:34 Digest Publishing Is Hiring
2:28 Circumventing Central Authority
11:50 From DeFundme to Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs)
20:15 Oppression 101: Rules for Thee & Not for Me
22:45 Sex in the Metaverse
30:05 Bitcoin Below $40,000
33:36 The Economic Slowdown Is Becoming Apparent

Nick Hodge: The stock market is down nearly 10% to start the year. Bond rates are starting to turn around and Bitcoin went below $40,000 for a bit today. I am not Gerardo Del Real, I am Nick Hodge, and this is my co-host for the week Chris Curl, also the editor of Crypto Cycle. And this is episode 157 of Bizarro World. Chris, how are you?

Chris Curl: Doing well, Nick, thanks for having me on.

Digest Publishing Is Hiring

Nick Hodge: Chris, we are hiring here at Digest Publishing. It's been over a year now since we started this endeavor, and the company continues to grow on all fronts: by subscriptions, by revenue, by the number of products, by employees, as evidenced by you being here, starting a new letter in the crypto sphere. And we recently hired a couple of marketing support people who will be starting in February and March. And now we are seeking a member services or a customer service representative. It's obviously a tough hiring environment out there, but we like to think that we have a good thing going on here. We are trying to put the customer first, we are trying to make the product such that it actually fulfills a need, unlike many of the newsletter products that I've seen around there where the need is seemingly is to have a product of market.

Ours are actually providing real advice and insights into either macro markets or specific markets of the stock market or crypto market, or bonds -- where we're putting real money to work. And so that's obviously the case with your product Crypto Cycle which just launched. We're putting $50,000 to work buying and selling cryptos or Altcoins, and maybe even some NFTs, which we'll talk about. But right now we're looking for a customer service agent. And so I wanted to lead with that because by any channel necessary, you got to get the word out there these days.

Chris Curl: Yeah, absolutely.

Circumventing Central Authority

Nick Hodge: I wanted to start with not the markets. I wanted to start with something that I think is on a lot of people's mind, at least I've been thinking about it and my wife and I have been talking about it and where you and I live here in Washington, we had a related announcement this week. So, it's the third week of February, and there's only five states left, or maybe even four that have a mask mandate, Washington is one of them. And governor Jay Inslee, this week came out and said that next month, March 21st, we could stop wearing our masks indoors and stop having kids mask up in schools, which has been a big theme for me. So let me rewind the tape a couple of weeks to when we had a extended shutdown for one of our daughter's preschool classes because kids were testing positive in the class and so they had to shut down the preschool.

And after the third weekly shutdown, I finally called the principal and was very cordial and nice, just expressed some of my concerns and wanted to know where the school stood as it related to mask mandates and things. And he expressed a couple of sentiments, the principal did, one that the closures were growing long in the tooth, he didn't feel good about having to continue to shut down at the preschool, especially because you can just remove the sick student or the student that tested positive and have the other kids in class. And the other thing he expressed was that, they weren't really taking a stance one way or the other, whether the shut downs or the masks were affecting kids' learning or development or anything like that. Their stance was basically, we're doing whatever we're told from above to keep our accreditation and our funding. That's an important point, the funding will come back to it in a bit.

So and I guess a couple of thoughts there, let me shut up and hear from you for a second, we'll have a discussion. I do want to go back and forth on this topic because obviously a lot of states have not had a mask mandate for a while. I typically don't wear my mask unless I'm asked to. I'm not a jerk about it, I'll put it on if you ask me to. But I am of the belief that they're not doing much benefit and it is time to take the masks certainly off the kids and a lot of other people are having, I think, similar sentiments.

In the past couple of weeks, just here in Washington, we've had superintendents send letters to the governor saying it's time to take the masks off the kids. We've had a couple of school districts even vote to go ahead and make masks optional in their own right, without the governor. And the state was quick to point out that you could lose funding if you do that.

So let's go down the funding path because Canadian truckers and not just truckers but others were in the news in recent weeks and still are for closing down bridges and having a Freedom Convoy and their funding question in a couple of ways, one, there was a GoFundMe that was shut down that they were using to raise money. And two, in draconian fashion Prime Minister Justin Trudeau enacted the Emergencies Act, which allowed again, the state to shut down people's personal bank accounts that were found or thought to be associated with the Freedom Convoy or the protests. So thoughts on some of that stuff.

Chris Curl: Well, there's a lot to unpack there. You're speaking about, right. Well, you're speaking about Governor Inslee, I've taken to calling him Lord Inslee over the last couple of years. Preferred him more when he was more of an affable jock who liked basketball and wrestling. In the last couple of years he's definitely gotten a lot more into his climate crusade and then the COVID shutdown and lockdown crusade. And now the masking crusade, which hopefully he's finally getting close to giving up on and letting go. I've noticed just going around here in Washington state, probably only about half the people out and about are even wearing masks anymore. And it doesn't seem like anybody really cares.

Nick Hodge: Eastern Washington state.

Chris Curl: And that is Eastern Washington, I don't know what it's like in Seattle but might be more aggressive and militant Karens there, I don't know. But the fact of the matter is, it's very obvious that Western governments are becoming increasingly oppressive and authoritarian. And you're seeing it in, very clearly with the Canadian truckers' protest. I think right now in Ottawa they're sending out militarized police. They're moving in with assault rifles on people who are peacefully protesting. Bank accounts are being frozen and this trend only seems to be accelerating. And you've seen it over the last two years with most of the world governments', especially Western governments', response to the COVID 19 pandemic.

When you think about the social and economic destruction that was wrought on the people, directly by the government, I think a lot of people are, starting to realize, "Oh man, well this is why people are creating decentralized systems totally outside of a central authority." This is the whole point. People are getting it. People who didn't understand the technology are starting to understand the politics and the ideology of it. So I think that the last year or two, I've been waking up a lot of people to that. Hey, our institutions are corrupt. They're not managing anything well. They're impoverishing you. They're oppressing you. And who knows what else? But this trend usually doesn't decelerate, unless people create a way to function outside of that centralized control.

Nick Hodge: A couple of things... Let's start before I get into the right to transact, let's talk a little bit about the system itself. I was writing recently about one big way the financial media lies to you. And some of that comes from Jeff Booth, who wrote a book about why you need deflation to basically have people survive what's coming. How technology is going to replace things. You need to have a native digital currency that things are priced in because the problems that we're facing, the devaluation of the dollar, the insurmountable debts, are a framework or a system that are so damaged that you can't create a solution within that same system or framework. So you need to start thinking about different frameworks or solutions, his is Bitcoin, or that's what he thinks is one of the main solutions because it's deflationary. He's talking about things getting, everything will be priced cheaper realtive to Bitcoin is his mantra.

Whereas, conversely, everything is currently getting more expensive in dollars, right? And we're seeing that. We've seen that for the past year. The Fed and the government wanted to deny it. But it's obviously undeniable with the CPI at the highest since 1982. And you have to laugh almost, Chris, because they say that they're going to fix it or its mission number one. And well, if you didn't see the problem or you didn't admit it existed, or you were the one who caused it, how are you going to be the one that's going to fix it. I saw there was a senator this week from Maryland, Senator Cardin, say the senators thinking about passing emergency legislation to deal with inflation. The headline could have been, "Fox Says He's Going to Guard the Henhouse," right? Weren't you guys the ones who were passing the bills that caused the inflation-

Chris Curl: They caused all of it.

Nick Hodge: Right and so you have to start thinking about a different system. And I guess I want to get your thoughts on that a little bit. How is the whatever, however you want to frame it, how is crypto a different system? How do they benefit? Or how can we use them to benefit? And I guess the easy question or the main thing, the first thing that detractors point to is like, "well, why can't these truckers use crypto to get around that GoFundMe shutdown." If ever there was a time for Bitcoin, it's now. Why isn't it functioning? Or maybe it is and it's being overlooked.

From DeFundme to Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs)

Chris Curl: Well, there's nothing stopping them from using crypto to transact. A lot of these older truckers are Gen X and Baby Boomers and they don't have crypto wallets and everything. It's just, it's going to take them a while to get all that figured out. It's going to be a big learning curve because there's a lot of technology involved. But you're seeing already the prevalence of decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs). And they just set one up for Julian Assange, which is already raised tens of millions of dollars. And those are collectively owned and managed by its members and they have a built in treasury. So no one person has the authority to access it without the approval of the entire group. So DAOs are really a way to circumvent things like DeFundMe and governments who are freezing bank accounts because they don't agree with the politics of the organization that's raising money.

Nick Hodge: DeFundMe is funny. Walk me through what a DAO is.

Chris Curl: Well, I think I kind of explained the basics of it. It gets a little bit complicated, but it differs from a traditional organization in being fully democratized. So it's not hierarchical. And so voting is required by members for any changes to be implemented. And also all the votes are tallied and the outcome is implemented automatically without any trusted intermediaries. So there's not anybody who can step in the way in the last minute and change it. And you also have any services that are offered, are handled automatically using blockchain technology. So it's not like there's anybody who can press a button to stop it.

The activity is transparent and public because it's on the blockchain. So yeah, you can't stop a DAO. The money that's in a DAO is not able to be controlled the way that, well GoFundMe has complete control. Obviously, we've seen they have complete and total control over all of the funds that go into their organization.

Nick Hodge: Well, it's a centralized organization, right? So if someone, if the red phone rings, right, and someone calls the executives or those that have power at GoFundMe and say, we don't like this campaign, we want this shut down, there's a kill switch, unlike obviously a decentralized platform, right. Because it's stored on all the member's machines. Am I getting that right?

Chris Curl: Right. Yeah.

Nick Hodge: I'm a neophyte Chris, so you're helping me. We just said there's a learning curve. And so that's sort of the point of, one of the points of Crypto Cycle. We obviously want to make money and we've put $50,000 to buy and invest in this space. But we're also showing and educating people why it's important to be in this space... how it's part of a paradigm shift not just in the financial system, but in the workers' rights and the rise of the middle class and the Fourth Turning and all that stuff plays into it.

I want to learn more and I want to show people obviously how to benefit from it. That's one of the things Digest Publishing is all about. So, when I have these questions that seem dumb, I'm trying to tease out for listeners, for members, how they can use these things for themselves or how they can go about learning more about them. So, when a DAO is on the blockchain is, take the one we were just talking about for Assange and you may not know, if not, just take a hypothetical example. Is that on the Ethereum blockchain or is that using a different coin?

Chris Curl: It's uses Ethereum and it functions using smart contracts, just like every other decentralized financial product. Most of those, of course, the vast majority run currently on Ethereum, but there are other blockchains that have the same functionality that I've talked about a lot. Even though not as many projects are launched on them, like Avalanche or Solana or any of these other ones. But yeah, Ethereum is the major DeFi blockchain. That's where almost everything's launched on. And that's why Ethereum is just over the long term, a really safe investment in the crypto space.

Nick Hodge: Because you can build apps or smart contracts on Ethereum and you can't do that with Bitcoin. That's correct?

Chris Curl: That is, correct, yeah. Bitcoin just does not have the capabilities for that. With The Lightning Network, Bitcoin. has more utility as an actual digital currency because that eliminates a lot of the transaction fees and the slow transaction time that Bitcoin is plagued with. So yeah, I do think Bitcoin, with the help of things like The Lightning Network, can function as a currency. But yeah, Ethereum really is the primary blockchain for all of these smart contracts, all of this DeFi stuff, even metaverse stuff, NFTs, this stuff is all firmly entrenched on the Ethereum blockchain.

Nick Hodge: So why does Bitcoin remain the gold standard and the quote unquote, Chosen One. Why is it gold and Ethereum still silver, if it's not that good for building apps on and you can't do smart contracts, I realize it's getting better with The Lightning Network, but why is Bitcoin still the one?

Chris Curl: Well, because it was the first. It's been around since 2008, 2009. And there very well may come a day where the Ethereum flips Bitcoin, where the market cap for Ethereum is larger than Bitcoin's.

Nick Hodge: But not necessarily the price because of the share count.

Chris Curl: Yeah. Due to Bitcoin's fixed supply and deflationary nature I think that the price is always going to be more for sure, yeah.

Nick Hodge: Yeah. And that's what I think Jeff Booth is meaning when he is saying things are always going to get cheaper priced in Bitcoins. So let's bring it back to the masks and to the schools. So when I was talking to the principal and he was saying he was worried about the funding. You could theoretically form a DAO. Get together with all the other rich parents at the school, form a DAO and say, "We're all going to contribute to this and we're going to stop taking funding from people who can dictate mandates to our children. And also we're going to put up our credit via this DAO to self-insure. And then what?"

Chris Curl: Well yeah, they can do that.

Nick Hodge: Well, that's what I mean.

Chris Curl: Yeah, that would be an effective way to circumvent all of this central authority bearing down on them.

Nick Hodge: Well that's exactly was my point and I knew the answer...

Chris Curl: I don't know how to elaborate on it. I agree, that's a pretty good thought.

Nick Hodge: And I wanted you to say it was possible. So anybody could do that I guess is the broader point, right? For anything where the right to transact becomes a pinch point. That's the light bulb that I wanted to go off and maybe it just did for some people.

Chris Curl: I think so.

Oppression 101: Rules for Thee & Not for Me

Nick Hodge: We see all this deplatforming, right? People getting kicked off Twitter, people wanting people to get kicked off Spotify, whatever it is, deplatforming. And so we talk a lot about other rights too, right? Like the right to vote and for freedom of speech and all this stuff. And another thing that I'm going to steal that I saw recently was a long thread on why the right to transact supersedes all that stuff. Because all the other things cost money. You need to transact to do all the other things. Try to vote without getting to the local voting thing, right. Without taking an Uber or firing up your car or whatever it is, right. Or try to exercise whatever your second amendment right without buying a gun. Or try to exercise your right to assembly when the government takes away your GoFundMe.

And so to exercise all these other rights, you need to be able to spend money. You need to be able to transact. And if you can't transact, then you can't exercise some of these other rights. And I think that's what this conversation is about. That's what you and I are talking about and what people are figuring out a la the closing down of GoFundMe accounts, and using the, in the case of the school, the funding. "You guys can't make your own rules because we're going to take away your funding." Well fuck you, we can bypass your funding in an autonomous way, then you can't dictate to us. And so I think that's a very big thing for cryptos, I imagine you do as well.

Chris Curl: No, I completely agree. I think you summed it up really well. This is the entire reason that cryptocurrency was created. A lot of people, I think just thought these were some nerds in their mom's basements speculating on JPEGs and having sex in the metaverse or whatever but there's a lot more to it. There is a fundamental, ideological framework that underpins most of these cryptocurrency projects and it really is all about decentralization obviously and freedom and liberty against centralized forms of control. Which for pretty much as long as both you and I have been adults has been getting more oppressive and more authoritarian.

Nick Hodge: Well, especially when it's "rules for thee and not for me," right? Whether it's insider trading in Congress or in the Federal Reserve, both of which they're trying to course-correct on now, you've got some members of Congress trying to get through a bill barring members from trading. And in fact, in a big development worthy of the podcast, I guess, you had Senate majority leader, Chuck Schumer come out and say, "that's a good idea", in the face of Nancy saying it's not a good idea, who profits from it the most right, or one of the most. And then the same thing with the Federal Reserve, right? So let me just read this because-

Chris Curl: Well, they just banned any employees of the Federal Reserve from trading and stocks or cryptocurrencies.

Nick Hodge: It only took a fucking century.

Chris Curl: I think a lot of people read that headline were like, "Wait a minute, they could do that before." It seems like a little bit of a bad idea but...

Nick Hodge: It's incredible. And so people are realizing this and those who are in charge are starting to figure out that people are upset about it, right? And they're trying to, well, hopefully as part of the Fourth Turning, we're voting in people who are saying, "Look, we need term limits. You're not allowed to trade stocks based on policies that you know about. You're not allowed to own bonds and sell bonds before you dictate monetary policy. Of course you're not, right? And in some ways that's always going to be, that graft is always going to be in the system and very much in a lot of ways, cryptos can help take that out or at least make it more transparent so everybody knows what's going on.

Sex in the Metaverse

And you mentioned sex in the metaverse, there's going to be plenty of that. And it's a perfect pivot point because I've been writing a lot about Playboy (NASDAQ: PLBY) and I've been buying a lot of Playboy stock and I've been getting my ass kicked. But similar to the volatile nature of cryptos, some of these companies that are associated with the space are volatile as well. But that doesn't mean they aren't going to be successful. In the case of Playboy specifically, a couple of things, I guess related to sex, one, they've got this platform called Centerfold, which is basically Only Fans for porn stars. And they've recruited a lot of top porn stars. Yesterday they announced Mia Khalifa was joining the platform and they've gotten Cardi B-

Chris Curl: A big Dogecoin supporter that Mia Khalifa, just throwing that in there.

Nick Hodge: Well, I'm getting there, Chris, I'm getting there bud. They've got Cardi B to be its creative director. So, that's Centerfold. Yeah. That's like big get, right?

Chris Curl: It's a pretty big deal.

Nick Hodge: And so that's just one of their silos. So they're creating sort of like, Minecraft, they're creating this digital ecosystem, right? So they've also launched Rabbitars, which is an NFT project. I'm not sure if you're familiar with that or not, but that's one of their verticals. And so they've been selling NFTs as a source of revenue generation and then they've got an e-commerce gaming business in China. They've bought an online lingerie company, an e-commerce lingerie company.

And it's a, basically a new sort of e-commerce metaverse type of company, Playboy is. Because yes, you just mentioned Mia's interest in Dogecoin. There'll be obviously avenues to promote various coins and project launches or NFTs to take payment via those things, et cetera. And so I'm pretty sure Playboy is going to report that they made over $200 million in revenue last year in the next couple of weeks and they're trading at only five times that. And so anyway, you mentioned sex in the metaverse and I'm interested in that stock so it was a perfect segue to talk about it for a little bit. But do you have anything to add to any of that or any other companies in the space you want to talk about?

Chris Curl: Yeah, it sounds like they're making the right moves as a company. Obviously, the business model of selling magazines with airbrushed breasts is probably in the past, regardless how good their articles may or may not be. They clearly have to move on to the next thing. And it looks like they're intelligently doing that. So yeah, I think you're probably right in picking up that stock, even though there's some short-term volatility.

Nick Hodge: There's still a link on the site that says, "read the articles."

Chris Curl: Read the articles, they still have that, okay. That was the famous excuse. But-

Nick Hodge: Yeah, no, it's a whole ecosystem now.

Chris Curl: No, it's true. Many mainstream companies are heading in that direction. We all know what Mark Zuckerberg is doing with face, formerly Facebook now, Meta (NASDAQ: FB) . Trying to create a whole digital world in the metaverse where kind of replaces traditional social media because now everybody thinks that, "Oh, my grandmother's on Facebook. Facebook's not cool anymore. What is this 2008?" Nobody cares. So they're branching out into the metaverse and it has the potential to be really smart in the long run even though there might be some short-term hurdles. Because opening up the metaverse means you're opening up so many more ways to generate income aside from just selling people's personal information, which is what they've relied on, advertisement, and personal information. They're going to be able to start integrating metaverse real estate, NFTs. People are going to be directly, eventually directly using this platform as a way to transact, cryptocurrency transactions, NFTs, digital real estate, and all that stuff.

Nick Hodge: Well, I was just going to say there's been the privacy issue going on, which people can now opt out of some of that tracking through Apple devices, which I believe very negatively impacted Facebook's revenue, which is one of the reason the stock is off. I think-

Chris Curl: Yeah, I think you're right.

Nick Hodge: ... 25% over the past couple of weeks. And so, yeah, it's that evolution and that speaks also more towards the power going back into the hand of the individual instead of the larger overarching organization and Gerardo and I talk about that a lot. We haven't been on Facebook in a long time. For me, it's been, I think, 10 years since 2012. And so, it's been a long time coming and yeah, but also goes back to what I was saying in the beginning about offering a real product, right. Not just one where your user is the product.

Bitcoin Below $40,000

And so, before I launch into, I guess a little bit of wrap up and broader market stuff, let's touch on the crypto market for a little bit because it's softened up here. And I had my own thoughts of course, as a generalist, but you have your own as a expert or someone who focuses mostly on cryptos. So, as we record, Bitcoin was a little soft this week. It dipped temporarily below $40,000. For me personally, I think technically, I'm talking about charts technically, it could go to where it went a couple of weeks ago, what was that? $36,000 or something, right?

Chris Curl: Yeah, it's within the realm of possibility. It's generally following the stock market indices, which is what it tends to do. Bitcoin is essentially a risk-on asset and treated that way by market makers and Wall Street. So yeah, it's generally tracking the market indices, which haven't been doing very well. Obviously, it looked like the fog of war had cleared and all of the rate hikes had been priced in and most of the fear, uncertainty and doubt was behind us. And then all of a sudden we get a fresh batch of scaremongering from the media about how Russia is getting ready to attack the Ukraine. So that spooked the markets again. It's hard to make a calculation based on technical analysis when you just keep getting conflicting news stories from the media that either embolden the market or spook the market on an almost daily basis.

So that's kind of where we are. That's where we are, but Bitcoin has actually, at least at the time we're recording this, has held a pretty key support zone in the, right under $40,000. I don't know if that's going to hold, if it doesn't then going down to around $36,000 like you were talking about is a very real possibility in the short term. But so far it's holding, and it's still technically in an upper trend break from the downward trend it had been on since January. So yeah, we're just watching it closely. But in the long term, Bitcoin is not going away. It's a solid investment. If you hold it for a long period of time you're going to make money, regardless of where you buy in.

Nick Hodge: Couple of good points there. For me, personally, I'm comfortable buying Bitcoin below $40,000. I want to get to an entire Bitcoin here soon. And so I was starting to buy a little bit more underneath $40,000 today. If it does dip to $36,000 I will go in in a bigger way. And that speaks to what you were saying about the volatility and the whipsawing nature of it. And there was a lot to mention there because a lot to touch on there because you mentioned the war. And so I believe, I believe, the media and the government, the administration is using the war as a hedge until we get through the next month of stock earnings, GDP growth numbers and the Fed meeting. Because really everyone's waiting for the Fed meeting, right? Can they really hike into this slowdown?

The Economic Slowdown Is Becoming Apparent

And the slow down is becoming apparent now. And I wanted to touch on that for a second. Earnings growth is still robust, if you look at S&P earnings, which are now almost done, right? We just got all the Q4 earnings. It is still great, double-digit earnings growth, right? Growing at 25%. But that's a lot slower than it was earlier in 2021, in Q1, in Q2 2021 when we were coming off lockdown numbers. And that's what the market cares about, is those year over year numbers. And from that perspective, we're clearly in a growth slowdown from S&P earnings. The same exact thing is going to happen with GDP. It's still going to be positive GDP but it's going to be slowing GDP from last year. And so that's not the right environment to be hiking rates into despite the fact that rates need hiked.

That's obviously the big thing that's going on here. We'll see what happens but I think, some days this week Russia was like, "Man, we're taking away troops, we're backing off." And the U.S. media was like, "Nah man, they're like shelling motherfuckers, like let's start this bitch."

Chris Curl: They are desperate for a war. Desperate for one.

Nick Hodge: And so I think they want that hedge there. And so, we'll see how it all goes. It's a perfect springboard to say we are in a transition. Rates already raised themselves, which I continue to say, Jerome has no authority. The 10-year rate, yield, went up over 100% last year to yielding almost 2% now. And so, the market raised rates on their own. It's my belief that those rates are going to pull back either because the Fed isn't going to be able to cut or because the market's going to paradoxically lower bond yields on its own even if the Fed hikes its rate because of that slowing growth that I mentioned.

And so you're seeing a little bit of that this week, the 10 year hit 2% and then pulled back to 1.9%. And the other thing that's telling you that growth is slowing is gold, which finally, it broke out, right? It didn't break out amid all the inflation. It wasn't the inflation that drove gold higher. It's the slowing growth, the flight to safety that's driving gold higher. And so, you saw gold hit $1,900 for the first time since last June. When it hit $1,900 the summer before that, in 2020, it only took two weeks to get to $2,000. So I'm watching that very closely. And then continue to be positioned defensively. So if I look at my account, it's still almost half in cash. I've been buying short-term and long-term bonds, defensively. I've been buying gold. I've been buying gold mining stocks, big ones, Wheaton (NYSE: WPM), for example.

And then consumer staples and things that pay high dividends have been holding up relatively well, if you look at stocks like Altria (NYSE: MO, or if you look at stocks like General Mills (NYSE: GM), or if you look at things that are in the agricultural space like fertilizers and ag goods and stuff, all that stuff is holding up good and are places to park cash. You're not going to generate maybe a lot of alpha, but you're certainly not going to lose money in an environment where almost one of every $10 has been erased from retirement accounts in the past month and a half. So those are my current thoughts, continue to watch, obviously, markets with baited breath as I do, and trade around them.

Excited for you, Chris, to get a dip in some of these Altcoins and continue to show people how to buy them. And I think that's on the docket for next week. If you want to wrap up with a little bit of that because I'm excited to learn how to do that. So you've been talking and making how-to videos about decentralized exchanges and wallets that aren't coin base, where you can store some of these alternative coins. And then exchanges where you can buy them like Pancakeswap and things that are foreign to me. And so that's the next level. We've been buying some Bitcoin and Ethereum. And you want to talk a little bit about what you want to buy next?

Chris Curl: Yeah, given the macro environment and all the uncertainty, we've been really conservative in what we've been acquiring so far, just building up, like you said, a foundation of some Bitcoin and some Ethereum. Those are going to do well over the long term no matter what, even if there's some short-term volatility. And yeah, so this week we should be branching off and transferring some funds over to a smaller exchange so we can get some of these more obscure altcoins, things that aren't listed on the major exchanges like Coinbase or Gemini. So we're going to get some of these smaller coins with the intention of holding for a fairly long period of time until we have our next big market run-up. And after Bitcoin hits a new all-time high, these smaller coins just take off.

So that's what we're hoping to position ourselves for. Hopefully, that happens sooner rather than later. If World War III breaks out and the stock market crashes, I have no idea what's going to happen. Obviously, nobody has any control over that. Certainly not you or me, but I think if we position this portfolio, in the future we're going to be richly rewarded. And I'm hoping that people who are subscribed to the service and are following along can learn how to do this for themselves. See some of the things we're buying, maybe make some of the same purchases. And hopefully they'll then at least have the education where they can say, "Oh, well this looks like a good project. Now I know how to buy this and I know how to hold it, I know how to transfer it and sell it if I need to." Because where the big money in crypto is made. These smaller coins.

Nick Hodge: I couldn't agree more. I'm excited to get some of those coins into our portfolio as well. And I think it's a good time to be buying. Obviously, I wouldn't be putting my capital there if I didn't, especially with a long-term time horizon for the reasons that we discussed in this podcast. So, as we work through this little bit of economic slowing period, it's a perfect time to get educated and to start building a portfolio of assets whose prices aren't reflecting they're a true value. That's what contrarians do and that's ultimately how you make money over the long term. I appreciate you joining me today, Chris, for episode 157 of Bizarro World. Is there anything you'd like to say before we depart?

Chris Curl: I don't think so. What are the odds you think we get another multi-trillion dollar stimulus package in the next year?

Nick Hodge: Well, high because a lot of people still aren't working and we've had the expiration of the child benefits that we're at the end of the year.

Chris Curl: Child tax credit. Yeah.

Nick Hodge: Yeah. And things are getting more expensive in dollars. And so when we think about a paradigm shift, when we talk about, I'll steal this right from Jeff Booth again, when he was talking about things getting more expensive in dollar terms but always cheaper relative to Bitcoin, he made the analogy of monopoly. And he was saying basically people who aren't informed about this new economy or don't make the change are all these monopoly players. And you know how every time you go around the board, you collect a $100? Well now that $100 doesn't get you all the way around the board anymore. And so they have to give you another a hundred bucks or more than-

Chris Curl: Halfway through, yeah.

Nick Hodge: Exactly, right. And then you start talking about whatever, modern monetary theory (MMT) and universal basic incomes (UBI), which I think is where we're going. And so if you want to get give people universal basic incomes in dollars, that's fine. The...

Chris Curl: Or a central bank digital currency maybe, that's a whole other Bizarro World.

Nick Hodge: Yeah. That's a whole another topic but the goal for you as an investor and as a person is to figure out, obviously, what the end result of that is going to be, what assets are going to inflate as a result of that. So, that's what we try to do here every day, hedge, diversify and make money in the system that we're currently in, which is changing fast and that's also why you're here, so we appreciate it.

Chris Curl: Well, thanks for having me on. I've had a lot of fun.

Nick Hodge: Awesome. That was episode 157 of Bizarro World. 

This transcript is unedited. Please excuse grammatical errors and run-on sentences.