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El Salvador To Go “Crypto”
News Bytes 11/29/2021 44 Comments

In a rock concert-like atmosphere, El Salvador’s President Nayib Bukele announced that his government will build an oceanside “Bitcoin City” at the base of a volcano.

Bukele used a gathering of Bitcoin enthusiasts as the audience for launching his latest idea. He announced at an earlier Bitcoin conference in Miami that El Salvador would be the first country to make the cryptocurrency legal tender. That went into effect in September.

Wearing his signature backwards-turned baseball cap, Bukele held a microphone in front of a massive LED video screen. He said that Bitcoin financing would begin in 2022, with groundbreaking on the new city to follow shortly thereafter.

Plans say the city will be built near the Conchagua volcano. Solving the complex mathematical calculations that release Bitcoin transactions is energy-intensive. The process, called mining, will run day and night in the new cyber-focused city. Proximity to the volcano will allow the community to take advantage of geothermal energy for powering both the city and the Bitcoin mining processes.

The Salvadoran government is already running a pilot Bitcoin mining venture at another geothermal power plant beside the Tecapa volcano.

The government seeks to attract investors in the new city by providing land, infrastructure, and work opportunities. The only tax collected there will be a value-added tax, half of which help pay for municipal infrastructure and maintenance. Bukele says there will be no property, income, or municipal taxes. He also envisions a city with zero carbon dioxide emissions. There will be residential areas, malls, restaurants, and a port, Bukele says. The president talks of digital education, technology, and sustainable public transportation.

“Invest here and earn all the money you want,” Bukele told the cheering crowd in English at the closing of the Latin American Bitcoin and Blockchain Conference.

It may sound too good to be true. The optimistic president is presenting the futuristic city as a type of “utopia.” That’s a term often used in literature for an imagined place where everything operates perfectly—a world without sin.

The Bible refers to such a place too, but recognizes that it won’t occur on Earth, among sinful people, before Christ returns to make all things new. Until then, “in the world, you will have tribulation,” says Jesus in John 16:33. And, “the poor you always have with you.” (John 12:8) But a time is coming when that will change. “He who has no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price,” promises Isaiah 55:1, looking ahead to that glorious future home.

In the meantime, exploring economic options like cryptocurrency isn’t wrong. Economies have changed much over the millennia—from systems of bartering goods and services, to trading shells, beads, or jewels for goods, to centralized national currencies. Change is likely to continue and can be done well, though greed is always going to influence the way humans handle wealth.

Critics warn that cryptocurrency’s lack of transparency could attract increased criminal activity to El Salvador. They also express concern that digital currency’s wild swings in value pose a risk to those holding it. The cautions are well advised. In his zeal to entice foreign investment into El Salvador, Bukele might do well to add to his fervor prudence, wisdom, and patience.

(A Bitcoin symbol glows on an LED screen at a cryptocurrency ceremony behind El Salvador’s President Nayib Bukele on November 20, 2021. The president announced his government will build an oceanside Bitcoin city at the base of a volcano. AP/Salvador Melendez)

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Most recent comments

1st comment

Did yall have a Happy Thanksgiving?

2nd Comment

Hmm. I am still not sure what I think about cryptocurrency. I mean, how is that any better than regular money? I am sure politicians will find a way to inflate it as well. plus, it is all digital. Our dollars aren't worth too much anymore due to inflation, but they have some value due to gold. Money used to be made out of solid gold or silver, and that was worth a lot. How can electronic money be worth anything? I am taking economics this year, and if anyone wants to read a not too in depth economics book, "Whatever Happened to Penny Candy" by Richard J. Maybury, is a REALLY good book! I learned a lot from it. It is pretty short too, for anyone who does not like a long book! XD
@Jonathan: Um, it was ok. Half my family came down with covid, so we had to cancel all family and friends coming over so that was a bummer, but other than that it was good. Y'all could still pray for us my mom has it pretty bad, and my 3 mo. old brother is sick too. Plus a few others in my family. Yet some of us haven't even got it! Thankfully.


1) I am SOOOOOO glad you have read that book! I love Mr. Maybury's stuff! His Whatever happened to Justice? is great too! You should check it out!
2) As the daughter of a crypto-enthusiast, I will (later today) post an article on crypto.

@Riley D

I don't know much about it but here's what I do know.
The reason that it is better than regular money is that it is decentralized, meaning that the government has no control of it. That means that the government can't inflate it.

This is Mylee

Bit coin is so $$$ someone my dad knows has 4 bit coins !!!! @Riley i read that book a long time ago it was good.

OK, Asher said the government

OK, Asher said the government has no control over it. And I might agree, except... Bitcoin has to be run somewhere doesn't it? So, if all the governments are in sync,*cough cough* global government, it CAN be influenced. The server or whatever can be run on a small island for all I care; at some point, government can and will have a hand in it. And, Riley asked how it can have digital currency can have any value. Well, from what I've learned, in of itself, it isn't worth anything! It's worth no more than an expensive rifle on Conterstrike Global Offensive! And, yet... People will pay $40 for some of the weapons, (kid you not folks, I've seen it on the Steam exchange market. It's crazy) Why do they pay for it? Because. they. want it. And the same applies to cryptocurrency and everything else. Supply and demand. More people want cryptocurrency, more money is being paid for it, and prices can go up on it. People start bailing out and there's only two users left, then yes, it won't be worth as much.


I'm pretty sure it's near impossible to hack or control because of the complexity of the coding. It has very high accountability. I have to ask my dad a couple of questions and then I'll give a summary of the what/where/why/how of crypto.


And Hesperus, you are absolutely right about the supply and demand thing. One of the reasons why people are willing to buy crypto is because the dollar is losing its value. They want to change to a more reliable currency.


I put a space between each letter/number/symbol in the link, so you'll have to take them out to go there.
The video is called 'Bitcoin: What is it? What are the risks?' and it's by CFO Dad on YouTube.


I think cryptocurrency is probably a good choice because it inflates, but not due to the government. It’s very risky though, and inflates and deflates very quickly. So I don’t know if it’s good as a national currency.

not good

not good


Actually, it doesn't inflate and deflate. There is always the same amount. The value of it changes a lot because it's not very widely used yet.

@N&M a

I think the city itself is a pretty good idea, but I am NOT a fan of the location!! I get wanting the energy from the temperature, but it's an ACTIVE VOLCANO!!!!!! No way.


Bitcoin runs on an algorithm that is public. One Bitcoin is not a tangible thing. It’s not a digital code that travels from one computer to another. Bitcoins are simply (well, not really simply) records of exchange. You cannot steal Bitcoin.
When you give a friend a dollar bill and they put that bill in their pocket, that is a transaction. In Bitcoin, a transaction happens when one individual writes in their ledger that they have given Bitcoin to another individual. This record of a transaction is copied in every user’s ledger, and cannot be changed.
Bitcoin cannot be stolen from you. Every ledger must agree or the discrepancies in one ledger are canceled. Bitcoin cannot be added to the system because the algorithm requires that it comes from a known wallet. The algorithm will not recognize any mystery Bitcoin.
Bitcoin is mined, but there are only 21 million Bitcoin possible. The algorithm is made to stop producing Bitcoin once this limit has been reached.
Bitcoin cannot be manipulated by the government. Code is the law in Bitcoin, there is no higher. The algorithm made is so incredibly complex that very few people even completely understand it. The only way a government could manipulate the use of Bitcoin is if they banned its use. In China, for example, the mining of Bitcoin was banned. However, the Chinese Bitcoin miners left the country and moved to Texas.
Bitcoin has been tested by time. It was created in 2008. It has been put to many trials over the past 13 years and has made its way through them without a scratch.
Bitcoin is a great way to explain natural law. Natural law states that you must do everything you agreed to do and you may not encroach on others and their property. The Bitcoin ledger is set in code and cannot be changed, so once a record is made, you can’t back out of it without the consent of the other party.
Phewwwwww! If you have any questions, please, please, PLEASE ask me! I lost my train of thought and don’t want to start over again, but I love talking about this, so PLEASE ask questions! :)


So if they can only make a certain amount of Bitcoin, then when they reach their limit they have to stop. But then what happens with the rising prices, and there is eventually not enough Bitcoin to pay for it. Then do you have to start making more, and inflation starts? Where does the value of Bitcoin come from? What do you mean that Bitcoin is mined? Is there someone out there that is mining gold or silver for Bitcoin so that it will have some value? How do you determine the price of something in Bitcoin money? I have never seen any price tags that have the Bitcoin price on it. Because if it is better than the US dollar, then it would have more value, so something would cost less Bitcoins then dollars. How much is a Bitcoin worth?


Good questions! I probably won't have time right now to answer all of them, but I'll do my best!
1) When prices rise, that means there's not enough of whatever you're trying to buy. So if there was a shortage of gas, then gas prices would go up because gas would be worth more to the sellers because they don't have a lot of it. This affects the value of money too. Money (as much as the government may say) does NOT have fixed value. 100 years ago, you could buy a car for $200, but now, it sometimes takes $200,000. This is because people don't value money as much anymore because there is so much of it. A lie that is going around right now is that adding more money to the system helps. This is not true. But I won't go down that rabbithole any farther. ;) If prices got so high that there wasn't enough Bitcoin to pay for things, businesses would lower their prices. If people can't afford your products, then they won't buy your products, so it's better for a business to sell at a lower price than to not sell at all. Also, even if someone wanted to make more, because of the way the algorithm works, the system would not recognize new Bitcoin. If the world depended on there being more than 21 million Bitcoin, then you would have to say goodbye to the world. I know that sounds crazy, but the guy who made this is an uber-genius. And now I feel like I'm less believable because I can't explain it... It has a lot to do with how Bitcoin is coded and I know nothing about coding.
2) The value of Bitcoin is found in how stable it is and how portable it is. It is immune to inflation and government manipulation, unlike the US Dollar, and is carried easily in your phone or digital wallet. (I say IT is carried, but really it's just your record of how much Bitcoin you have.)
3) Mining. Super complicated, so I'll give the short version now. There are only about 18 million Bitcoin _in_circulation_ right now. There are 21 million in existence, so every 10 minutes or so, new Bitcoin comes into circulation. 900 Bitcoin per day are introduced into the system. Every 4 years, the number of Bitcoin a day is cut in half. Once there are 21 million in existence, there will be no more mining. Mining is when a computer finishes a coding puzzle in enough time to get the next "block reward". This takes a lot of power, computer knowledge, and time. That's about the best I can explain it right now. I hope that helps!


Something that I think we all are wired to think is that money must have value in itself. That is not necessarily true. Money is really just a way to trade more easily. If you had to bring chickens around everywhere you went, you're not sure that anyone wants any chickens. You can't buy a car with chickens. That would take too many chickens! So what people ended up doing was giving people money when they worked for however long. THis means that money represents a certain amount of labor. So if I work for an hour and get 5 dollars, that means that 5 dollars represents 1 hour of my labor. I can buy a set of pens for 5 dollars and that will be me giving my labor to the person who is selling me a set of pens.
Another thing that I think we are wired to think is that money has fixed value. The truth is that NOTHING has fixed value. Gold is not always worth the same. Value depends entirely on what you want. So, if I had a ton of gold, do you think I would want a lot more gold? No, probably not. If I only had one gold coin, I might be more willing to buy gold. Or look at it more practically. When your cabinets are bursting with toilet paper, are you going to go out and buy a lot of toilet paper? No! Toilet paper isn't worth much to you because your house is full of it. If someone gave you a roll of toilet paper, you would probably be offended. But if you were on your last roll, you would be going out and buying the toilet paper and would be very grateful if someone gave you some. Toilet paper would be worth more to you because you didn't have a lot.
Prices are fixed by the people who are selling, not by the government or some other higher power that says something like, "Milk must always be sold for $1 per gallon." If that was the way things are, what would happen if no one was rich enough to buy milk? Dairies would go out of business because people would not be buying milk, and people who wanted to buy milk would not be able to. So prices are increased when there are more people who want the product, because the business makes more money that way, and prices are decreased when people don't really want the product, because people look at it and think, "Hey, that's really cheap! I'll buy some of that!"
This is all economics and I would recommend the entire Tuttle Twins series for this. They are 100% worth getting. They explain it better than I can. If you understand how money and values work, then it's way easier to understand Bitcoin.
You can also ask your dad or someone you know who is a businessman about economics. My dad's a financial planner, so he lives this stuff out every day and had to take classes on it. Lots of businessmen had to take economics when they were in college if they have a degree in business or marketing.
I know I'm still not done with the questions, but I will have to get back to them later! :)

@Hesperus D

$40 is a bit of an understatement lol, CSGO skins regularly sell for thousands of dollars. In the most extreme cases, they can be over $100,000!

@Riley D

You asked how people decide the price of something in Bitcoin.
Let's say I'm selling cookies at a bake sale and I want to accept Bitcoin and US dollars. Well, what _I_ would do (and this is generally what most business people do) is first, see how much other cookies are selling for. Let's say two booths close to me are selling cookies for $2 a dozen. I would probably price mine at $1.50 a dozen, because that's cheaper and people are more likely to buy my cookies. (Of course, this is assuming it took me less than $1.50 to make a dozen cookies, but that's off topic.) Now, to set my Bitcoin price, I would look at the markets to see how much people are willing to pay for one Bitcoin. How much people are willing to pay for a Bitcoin is what gives it value. So, if most people are willing to pay $54,000 for one Bitcoin, one Bitcoin is worth $54,000. I would then figure from that how many Satoshis (or fractions of Bitcoin) I need to take for a dozen cookies that is equal to $1.50 in the current value of it. That's one way to do it. You could also price it based on how much Bitcoin _you_ want. But I think it's safer to price it based on the current value of Bitcoin.
You also asked how much one Bitcoin is. I... actually need to ask my dad that, since it's changing almost constantly as more people buy it or sell it. Right now it's like a stock investment, but once it's distributed more evenly, its value will be less volatile, but not fixed. (Since there's no such thing as fixed value.) *texting my dad*
$57,000 dollars is how much one Bitcoin is worth right now. (it's 11:53 AM where I am) People don't usually buy everyday things with Bitcoins, they usually buy them with tiny, tiny fractions of Bitcoins called satoshi. (One satoshi is 1/100 millionth of one Bitcoin) Bitcoin isn't based on the US dollar, (it originated in Japan, but it's not based on Japanese money either.) but it can be bought with the US dollar.
The key thing to remember when talking about Bitcoin is that value is not fixed, it is constantly changing. Value is in the eye of the beholder. One man's trash is another man's treasure. Etc.

@Zack W

Huh, that's crazy. I've only seen weapons for sale, not skins. That's honestly an insane amount, just for a skin


I still do not know what cryptocurrency actually is and how it works


Welcome to WorldTeen! I hope you like it here!
Cryptocurrency is basically a digital currency. I went into more detail in the earlier comments, so if you're interested in it (which you should be, because it's really amazing!) you can read those. :)

@Addie L

Hm interesting. Yes, I am taking economics this year in school, and have read Richard Maybury's "Whatever Happened to Penny Candy" so it had given me a good understanding of economics. You said that when prices rise, there is not enough of what is wanted. I think that is true, but it also depends of how much inflation is going on. The more inflation, the more businesses realize that the value of money is going down, so they charge more for their items so that they can get the correct value for them. And wow all that stuff about Bitcoin is still a bit over my head lol! And yes you are right about money being the thing to trade. My economics taught me that many things have been tried to use for money in the past, such as animals, shells, and all kinds of stuff, but everyone always went back to gold and silver because it was the easiest traded. Our pieces of paper money aren't actually One Dollar or Ten Dollars or whatever, because One Dollar is 1 ounce of silver. So the paper money just represents that. And now I will try to stop giving you an economics lesson lol! Sorry! Lol about the toilet paper thing, yeah if I had a cabinet full, I wouldn't need to go buy more unless I was one of those crazy hoarding people during covid! XD So do you have to start out with buying one whole Bitcoin, or can you just buy Satoshis to start with? Because that is pretty expensive.


You are absolutely right. Inflation does affect the price of things. But with Bitcoin, since there's not inflation, the price changes as the value of the product goes up or down.
You can buy however many [fractions of] Bitcoin you want. I, for example, started out by buying about $28 worth of Bitcoin about 6 months (or so) ago. I just used some spare cash to do it, just to see how it went. I have made money off of Bitcoin before. 6 months (or so) later, my $28 worth of Bitcoin has grown to a few more dollars' worth. (I haven't checked in a while, so I'm not exactly sure how much it is.) But yeah, you can just buy it with spare change, you don't have to save up $57,000.

my eyes are hurting reading this page

are yall in collage or something wow how do yall type all this. XDXDXDXD (i love reading and ima going to read "Whatever Happened to Penny Candy" by Richard J. Maybury)
btw @riley d do you do classical conversations? cc for short.
i think money on a phone isnt a great idea it seems so unsecure.


Heh, I'm not in college yet! I have some work to do before that, but hopefully in a couple years!
I just really like talking about this, so it's not very hard for me to type more than usual.
Well, the good thing about Bitcoin is it's not just on your phone. The record of how much you have is embedded in everyone else's phones, so if someone tried to steal from you, everyone would know that you had been stolen from. (But it's impossible to steal Bitcoin, so...)

@People who keep commenting large comments

this is interesting but can you please stop?


Haha no I am not in college either! But I write stories and so I do a lot of typing! Plus I do a bunch on typing work for school as well. :) Also that is great you are going to read Whatever Happened to Penny Candy! It is a great book that I just finished! I love how he explained things. No, I don't do CC. My family uses a method called Simply Charlotte Mason, so there aren't specific books for each subject that we have to use, we kinda get to pick out our own, because it is only a method, not a curriculum.


We are having a good, logical conversation on here, and I do not see any reason to stop. If the comments are too long and boring for you, you don't have to come here and read them. That is up to you.


@Elisha- I used to do CC, but we stopped about 3 years ago.
@Riley- We do Charlotte Mason too! I like it a lot! We don't do strictly Charlotte Mason stuff, though. We are also doing a Circe Online class and a Logos Online class, both of which I am a big fan of! And you probably have this on your schedule for next year, but just in case you don't, Whatever Happened to Justice by Mr. Mayberry is, I think, even better than Penny Candy! I read it last year and then this year I'm reading his book about how Ancient Rome's government affects us.
@Jonathan- I'm sorry this bothers you, but this conversation has a point and is (like you said) really interesting. So interesting, in fact, that it takes more than a few words to talk about it. So, if you would like to join the conversation, you are welcome! But since it's not offending, we won't be stopping unless we have to.
@Riley- I'm not completely sure, but I think I'm going to have to stop posting for a couple of days because we're going to Nashville. I may or may not have wifi when we get there, so save any questions you may still have or things you still want to discuss!

@ riley d above

wow do you take a course in subtle roasts? woooooooof.
@ Jonathan she does have a point.

@ addie l

wow thanks for clarifying about the security part of bitcoin ima kinda not up to date with this kind of stuff, ima mor the video games and sports guy lol but this article is interesting

@Elisha N

Um, I am not sure what you mean? Subtle Roasts?
@Addie L:That's cool you use Charlotte Mason as well! I don't really know anyone else that does.



@Addie L

So I came up with another question: You can't ever totally change over to Bitcoin, can you? Because you still have to pay people is U.S. dollars, and if someone owes you something and they only want to pay dollars, then you have to accept it, because of our legal tender law which says that you have to accept it as payment for the debt or else the debt will be cancelled. Also, because Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency, does that mean it stays the same around the world? So everything would cost the same amount of Bitcoin here as it does in Germany, and China, and Japan, and Australia?


That's a great question.
You technically could. You could change completely over to Bitcoin and only use it. However, it would cause a lot of problems. It's like if you went to Europe and didn't bother changing from dollars to Euros. Then you would have to be constantly changing your dollars to euros. If you tried to use only Bitcoin, you would have to exchange it every time you wanted dollars, which would be every time you pay your taxes *at least*.
The second question is a little hard to answer. Like I said earlier, the price of the object is applied by the seller, so I could technically sell a pencil for $100 if I wanted to. It all depends on the value of the object in that time and place. So, no; things sold for Bitcoin in Germany will not always be the same price as things in the US. That's not because of Bitcoin, it's just the way prices work. The value of Bitcoin itself is the same worldwide, though. So one Bitcoin is worth $51,000 today, right now (9:59 AM CT) all over the world.

not quit sure why it made we think of that

This made me remember how in the end times ( or after the rapter don't remember witch ) there will be one world currency. I also have been reading the " left behind the kids " books , its a great series .


If one Bitcoin cost $57,00 then if a satoshi costs 1/100 millionth of a bitcoin wouldn’t it only be worth 5 or 6/100 of a cent


If one Bitcoin cost $57,00 then if a satoshi costs 1/100 millionth of a bitcoin wouldn’t it only be worth 5 or 6/100 of a cent


If one Bitcoin cost $57,00 then if a satoshi costs 1/100 millionth of a bitcoin wouldn’t it only be worth 5 or 6/100 of a cent


What did it mean when it said that the volcano would help them mine bitcoin


Yep. Satoshi's are not worth very much at all.
They need the volcano for a geothermal power plant, which takes the heat from the earth and converts it into electricity. Mining takes a lot of computer energy.

@Addie L

Hm, interesting. I think I am out of questions finally! XD I believe that I am still going to stick with U.S dollars right now, but thanks anyway for this conversation! I really enjoyed it!

@Riley D

Thanks for asking so many questions! I also enjoyed it!

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