Elon Musk Says Bitcoin Isn’t Decentralized as He Goes to War With Crypto Bulls

Tesla CEO Musk said last week the company was suspending bitcoin payments over environmental concerns.

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17, 2021

3 min read

This story originally appeared on Business Insider

Elon Musk said on Sunday he does not think bitcoin is decentralized, as a large proportion of mining is concentrated in very few hands. Since the Tesla CEO said last week his electric vehicle company would no longer accept bitcoin payments for environmental reasons, crypto fans have been pretty unhappy with him – and Musk has been adding fuel to the fire.

After being called out for his criticism of bitcoin and recent show of support for dogecoin in a Twitter thread by crypto bull Peter McCormack that highlighted decentralization as a key advantage of the cryptocurrency, Musk hit back.

“Obnoxious threads like this make me want to go all-in on Doge,” Musk tweeted. McCormack changed his Twitter name to ‘Peter McObnoxious’ before commenting on the thread’s content.

Related: Elon Musk Says Tesla Will No Longer Accept Bitcoin Due to Environmental Concerns

“Bitcoin is actually highly centralized, with supermajority controlled by handful of big mining (aka hashing) companies. A single coal mine in Xinjiang flooded, almost killing miners, and Bitcoin hash rate dropped 35%. Sound “decentralized” to you?” Musk tweeted.

“Hey cryptocurrency “experts”, ever heard of PayPal? It’s possible … maybe … that I know than you realize about how money works.”, Musk continued, sparking more reaction from crypto fans who said PayPal was not a good comparison as it is not blockchain-based and is the type of financial structure bitcoin is trying to counteract.

Musk announced on Twitter last week Tesla would no longer accept bitcoin as a form of payment due to environmental concerns and was looking at alternatives. Previously, he had publicly supported bitcoin, elevating him to one of the most popular figures in the crypto-sphere.

Related: Mark Cuban Hits Back at Elon Musk, Says Mavs Will Still Accept Bitcoin

His announcement drew renewed attention to the long-standing debate around bitcoin’s environmental impact. Critics argue the bitcoin mining process requires an absurd amount of energy that often comes from fossil fuels, while advocates say this is mostly clean energy and bitcoin uses less energy than other investment forms.

Crypto bull Michael Saylor shared a video of himself describing bitcoin as the “least energy intensive, most efficient technology that we have, perhaps, discovered ever in the history of the human race”.

“Saylor Moon”, Musk tweeted in response, comparing the crypto bull to fantasy anime character Sailor Moon – a young girl who searches for mystical crystals in an effort to save the world.

“He should wear outfit for Halloween, but with “Bitcoin” tattooed high on thighs”, Musk continued as supporters shared Sailor Moon GIFs.

Bitcoin tumbled to $42,185 during his flurry of tweets last night, which also alluded to Tesla potentially selling its bitcoin holdings. It had reached an all-time high close to $65,000 in April, but has gone through various peaks and troughs since. It was last trading at $45,416.14 on Monday, around 30% below the record peak.

Related: Elon Musk’s Girlfriend Grimes Says She Had a Panic Attack After Appearing on ‘Saturday Night Live’

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