A meme has been going around from YouTube comments to big bank CEOs that bitcoin is the next tulip mania fad or beanie babies craze. In the 1700s, tulips became immensely popular in the Netherlands and the price skyrocketed. However, soon prices collapsed and some traders and speculators were ruined. And then, not too long ago, remember Beanie Babies? The little collectible stuffed animals filled with beans that were very popular in the late 90s. I still have a few of them. For awhile, it was thought they were going to be worth lots, and they were. Some went for hundreds of dollars. Then it all came crashing down and they were relegated to the bargain bin. According to these robotic parrot trolls, bitcoin is headed the same way.
Of course, this is beyond absurd. Neither tulips nor beanie babies are a currency; bitcoin is. Tulips dont last forever and beanie babies are nothing more than a collectible. Comparing them to bitcoin is something only a bitter left-behind would foam at the mouth about. The fact that they pin their arguments on this, rather than some of the actual arguments against bitcoin (limited intrinsic value, utility without the internet, etc) shows that they have nothing constructive to say and are probably just upset they missed out on the $20 bitcoin, which I did as well, I thought it was stupid. What is really telling is many skeptics say blockchain technology is useful, but bitcoin has some magic deficiency.
Bitcoin is a real currency with real use. Tulips and beanie babies are nice, but not very useful. Bitcoin can buy things. Bitcoin can be traded. Bitcoin doesnt go bad or get old. Bitcoin doesnt sit on your shelf, taking up space. Now, it may be that bitcoin eventually goes the way of the dodo, but decentralized blockchain currency is here to stay, and may just be the future. Those very critical banks are suddenly rushing to catch up to the 21st century with their own blockchain experiments. It makes sense that major banks and pay processors are happy about being undermined, but that does not mean bitcoin will collapse. The question is, just how far will it go.
This was originally written on September 14, 2017 to reflect common sentiment at the time, but was not published for some reason. A few light edits have been made from that draft.