Former SEC Chair Expounds on State of US Government Regulation in Crypto

Empire podcast with Jay Clayton

What exactly is current SEC Chair Gary Gensler dealing with in terms of crypto regulation today?

This may be “it” as outlined by former SEC Chair Jay Clayton on Blocksworks revelatory April 4 “Empire” podcast.

Subscribe to the podcast here: Apple | Spotify.

Sure, Gensler is appointed by a Democratic president while Clayton’s appointment occurred during the Trump Republican administration. But, one senses that the game remains the same across political parties. Clayton shares towards the end of the episode, “I’m very empathetic to whatever Gary has to do. Because if the million American households are invested in the markets, it’s your job to do the best you can for them. But you’re not going to make everybody happy. That’s that’s just life…” Overall, Clayton is unequivocal that the crypto industry in the financial and regulatory world has come a long way in a short time.

Blockworks Jason Yanowitz and Santiago Roel Santos ask many important questions on crypto and smartly zoom out for a wider look at the financial landscape including the Great Financial Crisis in the 45-minute discussion. They also give Clayton a wide berth for his responses and they’re rewarded as Clayton seems to get a few things off his chest.

Highlights include… (lightly edited for clarity) Continue reading “Former SEC Chair Expounds on State of US Government Regulation in Crypto”

U.S. Partisan Politics Courts Satoshi

Peter Thiel at Bitcoin 2022

Three things are for sure given Peter Thiel’s speech last week at Bitcoin 2022 in Miami…

Thiel likes Bitcoin.

And, he likes Ethereum “if it works.”

And, he also thinks the crypto community can be galvanized into supporting the Republican Party.

Today, Politico’s Stephanie Murray reports that FTX Digital Markets co-CEO Ryan Salame has started his own political action committee (PAC) called, “American Dream Federal Action.”

Murray quotes from a statement on the PAC’s raison d’être: “forward-looking Republican candidates who want to protect America’s long-term economic and national security” and “forward-looking conservative leaders who understand the urgency of advancing smart policies that set America up for success.”

But then on the home page for the site, “conservative” and “Republican” were omitted leaving plain ol’: “forward-looking candidates who want to protect America’s long-term economic and national security.”

Beyond the editorial theater, the message is out. Crypto is going partisan. More precisely, some of its supporters, as well as opportunists, are making it partisan. Another milestone!

The question will be how much U.S. crypto holders and their proponents listen – a notoriously free-thinking, libertarian group at its core where the last thing anybody wants is to be centralized around a single human being (Satoshi excepted, and maybe Vitalik).

Thiel laid down the gauntlet last week ascribing the “woke” descriptor – i.e. Democrat – on TradFi luminaries Warren Buffett, Larry Fink and Jamie Dimon for liking on “blockchain technology,” ESG investing and hating on Bitcoin. It’s not clear that the audience was totally buying into Thiel’s argument. But, it was entertaining and oft-quoted while potentially signaling wider efforts by Thiel and other partisan interests as fall Congressional elections approach in the U.S.

Continue reading “U.S. Partisan Politics Courts Satoshi”

Mastercard Pitches Scale and Acceleration to Crypto Startups at ETH Denver 2022


Mastercard was in recruitment mode for its Start Path group at ETH Denver last week with a pitch to attendees and their hot crypto companies. Partnership and building were the key themes by company representative Grace Berkery who is Program Manager, Fintech & Enablers – Digital Assets & Cryptocurrencies,

Mastercard announced its inaugural startup accelerator program in July and Berkery highlighted to the audience the vast resources of the traditional fintech company – and its $350 billion market cap – as well as its commitment to the blockchain and crypto space.

Recent blockchain-related announcements for Mastercard include:

    • In December, the company inked a deal with MetaMask developer ConsenSys to create a rollup offering on Ethereum mainnet for improved scalability. (see release).
    • During its January earnings conference call, the company said it was partnering with Coinbase to help facilitate the purchase of NFTs by consumers.
    • This month, Mastercard said it is expanding its digital consulting business, too (see release).

Continue reading “Mastercard Pitches Scale and Acceleration to Crypto Startups at ETH Denver 2022”