Tuur Demeester, an expert speaker on the topic of Bitcoins and former writer for the financial newsletter Macrotrends, describes himself as a financial freedom fighter.
SCOPE|Maastricht and Maastricht Students For Liberty proudly welcomed Tuur Demeester for a guest lecture titled ‘Bitcoin – Investment Bubble or a new Financial Paradigm?’ on 5 February 2014.
SCOPE|Maastricht met up with him before the event and asked him to share his personal views on the future of Bitcoins and the potential role the alternative currency could play in the world economy.
Even though Bitcoins have typically been mentioned in the news in the same breath as investment, there is much more to bitcoins than what we are usually told. Mr. Demeester is travelling around the world to spread the word that bitcoins can be regarded as a valid solution to safe money placement for people living in countries plagued by the financial crisis or a corrupt government.
I failed dozens of times. And it was interesting, for it continuously brought me a new context and new environment and also taught me to look a little bit outside the box.
Originally from Bruges in Belgium, Demeester has spent some time in Latin America. The reasons for him to go there were many.
Ever since 2005, I have been worried about what is happening in Europe economically and what is simmering under the surface. I have been looking at all the debt in the system and looking on how fragile the banks are. Governments are over their heads into debt but so are even families and companies. So, I wondered where all of this is leading. A lot of people don’t seem to have the answer to that. I went to Latin America to learn about the crisis and how it works. What happens when there is hyperinflation, what happens when a bank shuts down, because obviously life goes on…
It was also in Latin America that Demeester heard about Bitcoins for the first time. This might be the reason why he got to it earlier than most, and consequently suggested to the readers of his investment newsletter to invest in the cryptocurrency.
I saw what the importance of Bitcoins could be, because people over there live in a place where they cannot export money. They cannot easily move money in and out. It is kind of like an economical prison. Making people to discover something that is liquid and global made me excited.
Before becoming an entrepreneur and investor, Demeester struggled in figuring out what path to choose in life.
I did many things. I did know what I did NOT want to do so I continuously tried something, quit, tried something else, and quit again. I failed dozens of times. And it was interesting, because it continuously brought me a new context and a new environment and it also taught me to look a little bit outside the box. I decided to co-found two schools and this helped me to realise that it is okay to not know what you want, and to be rigorous when deciding what it is you want.
Quickly Demeester realised that Bitcoins are not solely a valuable investment opportunity but have a far greater potential.
First of all Bitcoins are an incredible opportunity for the world to stop this crazy money-printing monster that we live in. Look at all the wars that are being fought: How are they being funded? I’m not paying for that voluntarily! It is because we print money and use that to pay the soldiers, build the tanks and drop the bombs. But at the same time Bitcoins are an incredible opportunity for young people to build a life for themselves, to get something before other people get it. They give you the opportunity to do very well and at the same time become very free. What comes right before personal freedom is often a form of economic freedom. So essentially Bitcoins for me are both a great investment vehicle as well as a project that’s aligned with my philosophy of individual freedom and responsibility.
What the future holds for Tuur Demeester is not set in stone.
I will be active in the field of personal freedom somehow but I don’t know how exactly. I might move from economic to personal topics but there probably will remain something that goes back and forth between.
Tuur Demeester taught us through his lecture and this interview that Bitcoins are not only a savvy investment alternative, but also a force to be reckoned with in the global economy.
SCOPE|Maastricht thanks him for his time and valuable insights!
By Katarina Otteby in cooperation with Lilly Uezsal for THE SCOPE blog