As the recent crisis caused by the collapse of FTX continues to wreak havoc across the cryptocurrency market, the critics are offering their two cents on the situation and the industry in general, including Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK.A) vice chairman Charlie Munger.
Indeed, Munger denounced crypto as a “bad combination” of “partly fraud and partly delusion,” and “a currency that is good for kidnappers,” as he said in an interview with CNBC’s Becky Quick published on November 15.
In the view of Warren Buffett’s right-hand man:
“It’s partly fraud and partly delusion. That’s a bad combination, I don’t like either fraud or delusion, and the delusion may be even more extreme than the fraud. (…) A 12-year-old can be a millionaire, he just calls it Mungercoin and starts trading it. It’s crazy, it’s demented.”
Furthermore, Munger voiced his opinion that “reputation is very helpful in financial life. To destroy your reputation by associating with scumballs and scumball promotions is a huge mistake.” As he explained:
“It pains me, in my own country, to see people who were once regarded as reputable helping these things exist. This is a very, very bad thing. The country did not need a currency that is good for kidnappers.”
According to the billionaire, “there are people who think they have to be on every deal that’s hot. They don’t care if it’s child prostitution or Bitcoin. If it’s hot, they want to be in on it. I think that’s totally crazy.”
Munger’s scathing views
Meanwhile, Munger has long been very vocal about his aversion towards crypto, likening it to venereal disease, as well as insisting that investors should “never touch” digital assets and that anyone selling them is “either delusional or evil,” as Finbold reported in July.
At a shareholder meeting in April 2022, he stressed that he tended to avoid “things that are stupid and evil and make me look bad in comparison to somebody else – and Bitcoin does all three,” whereas Buffett earlier referred to crypto as “rat poison.”
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