The ‘laser eyes’ meme has picked up in crypto circles on social media, attracting celebrities and Bitcoin proponents alike. But even politicians seem to be cashing in on the hype.
A Dutch politician is now using a popular meme that’s been doing the rounds in crypto circles in the past few weeks. He joins a small list of political types to have cashed in on the meme’s popularity.
Robert Valentine, the party leader of the Libertarian Party of Netherlands, put up the billboard in the country as a move that pays homage to Bitcoin’s decentralized, libertarian ethos. Loosely translated, the billboard reads, “You’d just stand with your head on a pair of billboards measuring 13 by 10 meters,” with another line stating the asset is “the future.”
— Documenting Bitcoin 📄 (@DocumentingBTC) March 14, 2021
One follower asked in the tweet’s comments about what did Bitcoin have to do with Valentine’s candidature at all, to which the latter noted, “Blockchain is libertarian to the core. A digital decentralized way to bypass power.”
The ‘laser eyes’ meme started last month after some power users on social media started editing their profile pictures to overlay bright red laser eyes until Bitcoin reached the $100,000 mark.
Even Wyoming Senator Cynthia Lummis changed her profile picture to include the set of laser eyes, a show of support for Bitcoin (her jurisdiction is forward-thinking when it comes to cryptocurrencies, and even proposed a DAO bill this month).
— Congress Changes (@CongressChanges) February 19, 2021
Is Bitcoin libertarian?
Although Bitcoin was not conceived as a political movement it attracts a lot of libertarian thinkers. A 2018 study found out that 44% of people who identified as crypto bros also identified as libertarians—a group that contests for radical freedom from government intervention while being ultra-focused on privacy.
The sentiment is one that even Bitcoin’s pseudonymous creator Satoshi Nakamoto—who did not directly align the asset with any political expression—found attractive while building out the asset’s codebase.
“It’s very attractive to the libertarian viewpoint if we can explain it properly. I’m better with code than with words though,” said Nakamoto in a mail dated 2008.
Some of the earliest users of Bitcoin were, unsurprisingly, also libertarians, such as Wikileaks founder Julian Assange and Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales.
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