Years ago, a theory began spreading that Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto’s birthday was symbolically set as April 5th, 1975. Why symbolic? Because supporters of the theory purport April 5th hearkens to the anniversary of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Executive Order 6102, which forbid gold hoarding among Americans, and 1975, a suggested nod to the year that U.S. citizens could legally own gold again.
A Libertarian Easter Egg?
In 2014, some Reddit sleuthing suggested Satoshi Nakamoto’s birthday — at least as it was set for his Ning/P2P Foundation registrations — was April 5th, 1975.
On the surface, the date is initially unremarkable. But libertarians in the space came to note that the date seemed to line up with two notable threads in the history of gold ownership in the United States: 1) FDR’s enactment of Order 6102, and 2) the re-legalization of gold ownership in America.
Order 6102 was part of FDR’s extreme measures to attempt to head-off the biting effects of the Great Depression, but it is a hallmark example of the arbitrary “violence” that the state can render upon its citizens — sometimes in times of crisis, sometimes not. The order required American citizens to deliver the majority of their stored gold to the Federal Reserve by May 1st, 1933, in exchange for $20.67 USD per troy ounce. Failure to comply could result in imprisonment of up to 10 years.
And, moreover, the sale of gold was re-allowed some 40 years later in 1975.
Toward Financial Sovereignty
So, with Bitcoin being the first decentralized blockchain that can provide “digital gold” beyond the purview of arbitrary state “violence” as U.S. citizens saw with real gold in 1933, was Satoshi Nakamoto trying to send a message with his birthday?
Maybe. Maybe not. We can never know for sure. But regardless, the “birthday” will likely henceforth be popularly linked to the federal crackdown on gold ownership. And that dynamic will only contribute further to Nakamoto’s modern legend status.
It’s not that Nakamoto was staking out a position as a direct opponent of the United States. It’s that he wanted to create digital money that could be maintained outside the purview of any state, since centralized states have so often abused the sovereignty of its citizens in the past.
Why leave it to chance when you can establish peer-to-peer trustlessness, right?
With that said, happy birthday Satoshi.
What’s your take? Do you think Satoshi’s birthday is symbolic or meaningless? Sound off in the comments below.
Images via Sprott Money, Wikipedia