Overcome prejudices with a little crow
“Eating Crow” is a “slang idiom used in some English-speaking countries that means humiliation by admitting that having been in a strong position has proven wrong. The crow is a scavenger who is presumably just as repulsive as it is emotionally difficult to swallow when proven wrong. “
In 2021, a number of high profile individuals, companies, and institutions changed their stance from anti-bitcoin to bitcoin advocates on a small or large scale. Elon Musk has done this several times.
Old-fashioned opinions are difficult to change – especially when immersed in cognitive biases such as authority and group bias and negative associations that were discussed in my previous “Bitcoin and Bias” articles.
For the past 13 years, it’s hard to imagine any asset other than Bitcoin that has been so reviled, ridiculed and labeled as worthless or soon to be dead. There’s even a Twitter handle called @DidBitcoinDie.
In 2021, many larger institutions changed their stance on Bitcoin, including Bank of America, Citibank, Goldman Sachs, and JPMorgan. Corporations like Visa and PayPal have also changed their minds. Other companies or institutions that have been neutral or already lightly on board have further improved their bitcoin game.
But it’s the people in these organizations that I think should be called out – since they need to eat crows.
That said, crow is much easier to eat when you make a lot of money from it.
Beyond potential money making, there are several barriers to changing our minds.
The bias of the gunshot and misfire to change your mind
One reason it’s hard to change your mind is because of the well-known verification bug. Confirmation errors feed on themselves and are amplified by our selected echo chambers.
When people try to learn more and look for information, they often stop at what they already believe. Google also makes this confirmation bias easy through its search algorithms, which often send results that confirm the opinions you have already held.
Even when people find conflicting information on the internet, it can easily be ignored.
The backfire effect is a type of affirmative bias that is “responding to disproving evidence by strengthening previous beliefs”.
To go beyond your own confirmation biases, you really need to dig in and do your own research and get out of your intellectual comfort zone.
Misunderstandings versus malicious slander
Functional fixation is “a cognitive distortion that restricts a person to using an object only as it has traditionally been used”.
The people who changed their minds about Bitcoin were people who both had years of experience with the current monetary system and therefore have greater difficulty looking past the historical semantics of money and the new technology of Bitcoin, a difficulty common to all Farrington’s Excellent. discussed is the article “Wittgenstein’s money.”
Kevin O’Leary said bitcoin was “useless” in 2019 and Ray Dalio said in 2020 that bitcoin was not a good store of value or medium of exchange.
In 2021 they both started investing.
Other personalities with a similar background – and I will not name any names – aggressively condemned Bitcoin and Bitcoiner as cultic, un-American, shadowy, among other things.
These anti-bitcoin narratives are emotional and subjective, and they are most likely impenetrable to objective facts.
Most people who changed their minds argued against or misunderstood functional semantics because of their fiat-centered mentality.
Looking beyond their views on money and understanding more about the fundamentals of Bitcoin changed the minds of those who changed their minds.
Bias, Trojan Horse Salute, and Politics
One reason why it is a lot easier to eat crows when you make a lot of money from it is because of the salience bias.
Salience bias is the cognitive bias that causes people to focus on more conspicuous or emotionally conspicuous elements and ignore those that are inconspicuous.
Making profit is of paramount importance to financial players, so the rising value of Bitcoin makes them pay attention.
They don’t focus on the reality of the Trojan horse, as Alex Gladstein discussed in Bitcoin Is A Trojan Horse for Freedom. Gladstein discusses how leaders of nations and leaders within institutions are drawn to Bitcoin because of its “number up” technology. You therefore do not see that there is also a “freedom go up” technology within the Trojan horse. As Gladstein writes:
“As human rights defenders well know, it can be difficult to effectively promote freedom in a society that willingly sells morality for profit. Bitcoin creeps in and rewires the system from within to reconcile pursuit of profit with permissive financial liberation. “
The same can apply to financial institutions and managers.
Even more so, these financial institutions, corporations, and high profile figures moving towards Bitcoin are also having a huge impact on the political world and who is elected.
Let’s HODL our reactions to certain people and their organizations – and let’s look at the long-term view of what their pro-Bitcoin influence can inadvertently do for freedom.
More pro-bitcoin finance spokesmen, companies and institutions will ultimately enable more pro-bitcoin politicians and, at the same time, allow more freedom.
These pro-bitcoin politicians will facilitate the rise of freedom.
It is a Russian Matryoshka Trojan horse that nests one Trojan horse inside another.
If the influence of pro-bitcoin financial institutions increases, then the number of politicians for bitcoin increases, then freedom increases.
Bias and Influence: Welcome contrary to what we told you
When politicians reverse their positions, they are often mocked as flip-flopper, U-turner or backflipper, depending on the country.
When anti-bitcoiners reverse their position on bitcoin, bitcoiners understandably want to mock these people as they once mocked the bitcoiners.
I believe we should welcome these changed opinions no matter how much money they make switching to Bitcoin. We look inside the horse.
Persistent influence bias is a type of affirmation bias, that is, “the tendency to believe previously learned misinformation, even after it has been corrected. Misinformation can still influence conclusions that are generated after a correction. “
Don’t at least some of us hear the naysayers in our heads during a Bitcoin price crash or an “allegedly bad for Bitcoin” event – despite our deep knowledge and strongly condemned beliefs?
The same can more easily happen for these newly minted Bitcoin advocates.
Many of the individuals are well known in the financial world and get significantly fueled during a Bitcoin price crash.
We should work to improve their real, deeper understanding of the mechanics of Bitcoin to help them hold onto their beliefs.
When the understanding is shallow, it’s easier to jump straight out of the rabbit hole.
Bitcoiners all know that if these high-profile financial authorities start and move further down the rabbit hole, they will also see that Bitcoin also fulfills their desire, and that of their customers, to do good in the world, or at least to do signs of virtue through good.
No group bias: Bitcoin is for everyone
Aside from Elon Musk – with his erroneous energy narrative – we have not yet seen any other wealthy institution or person change their minds from pro-bitcoin to anti-bitcoin.
Let’s keep helping people who really want to understand bitcoin – understand bitcoin.
Let us all work on the ongoing Influence Bias and enable changes in people and through the transition effect in the world.
Bitcoin is for EVERYONE.
Even the former naysayers.
In-group bias: what about the Everyperson in 2022?
Ingroup bias is a pattern in which members of your own group are preferred over members of the outgroup.
Finance managers, organizations and institutions live up to their own interests and prefer their largest and richest customers.
So the voice in my head says, “But financial institutions only help a small percent of the world get rich.”
What about the low to medium mass adoption? How do we prefer these other groups?
What about the people and countries that need Bitcoin for their basic needs, security and sovereignty – or to survive rampant inflation?
Regarding the actions of both the average Bitcoiner Maxi and the financially wealthy accepting Bitcoin, Preston Pysh made a similar point on his November 20, 2021 podcast with Greg Foss and Guy Swann:
“Bitcoin … is the ultimate filter for critical thinkers … when you get to the other side, the people with the deepest critical thinking skills will really reorganize and rethink and re-prioritize the allocation of capital … the things that add value to society.”
If you think that is not going to happen then you realize, dear reader, that most likely you are one of those people, too.
We can help everyone adopt solid Bitcoin money, but especially those who are hardest hit by the current monetary system or their government’s actions.
For 2022, let’s all think critically and carefully about what we can all do to use Bitcoin to repair our own and other societies and add value.
This is a guest post by Heidi Porter. The opinions expressed are solely their own and do not necessarily reflect those of BTC, Inc. or Bitcoin Magazine.