Daniel Krawisz on Governance – ”The Invisible Bitcoin Leaders: Insights of Don Quixote and Tom Bombadil”

The person with the greatest foresight, the one I want as a leader, would have been smart enough not to distinguish himself, and he would know how to act dumb whenever eyes were upon him.

Anyone who really knew how to make Bitcoin more valuable would be smart enough not to tell anybody about it. He knows that secrets are the most valuable thing in the market. He would want to tell no one, and position himself best in anticipation of its discovery by other people. The best leader must put his knowledge to the test without drawing attention to himself or even hinting that he knows anything.

In fact, I would consider someone who distinguished himself by his intelligence or foresight as second-rate at best. I am writing now with hindsight. I have had foresight, but I didn’t think far enough. If I had been really smart, I would never have written a single article because I would have realized everything that I wrote about here.

The Paradox

Thus, the paradox of leadership in Bitcoin is that someone who is a good investor knows not to draw attention to himself or to his ideas. For Bitcoin is an adversarial environment in which all attention that one draws makes him vulnerable. The problem is to get good ideas from leaders who want to stay hidden, and distinguish them from bad ideas.

The way that we know this leader is that he is always in the right place at the right time and he avoids all traps that are set for him, but he never does anything that reveals him to be anything other than a lucky idiot. Someone who avoids a trap, and reveals that he was not fooled by it, has shown that he is intelligent, which means that he is too stupid to be a good leader. Same if he succeeds and shows that he knew what he was doing. The best leader would avoid traps and make successful bets without revealing that he has foresight. The leader must be someone who is either very good or very lucky, and nothing about him definitively establishes the difference…

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