You can listen to the audio version of this recap wherever you get your podcasts:

Greetings and salutations my fellow plebs. My name is Walker and this is THE Bitcoin Podcast.

It’s Wednesday, August 9th, 2023. At the time of recording, the Bitcoin block height is 802,411 and the value of one Bitcoin is still one Bitcoin. 

Today’s episode is the weekly Bitcoin News Roundup. I’m going to go over the big stories of the week, run through a few rapid fire news, then zoom out and talk about the Bitcoin industry vs the Crypto industry.

Bitcoin Hits $40 TRILLION Transaction Volume

Yesterday, Bitcoin officially surpassed $40 TRILLION U.S. dollars in cumulative change-adjusted transaction volume, according to data from Glassnode.

Now, this is just a number, right? And we’re measuring it in fiat money which isn’t a great benchmark but it’s worth celebrating because Bitcoin transacted $40 TRILLION dollars without a central bank, without a government, without a CEO or a marketing department, and without asking for permission. 

Bitcoin Address Number Go Up

The Number of Bitcoin addresses holding 1+ and 0.1+ bitcoins both just reached an all time high.

The number of Bitcoin addresses holding 1+ bitcoins is 1,013,414, and the number of addresses holding 0.1+ bitcoins is 4,436,238

Naturally, many people have control over multiple Bitcoin addresses, so these numbers aren’t a great indication of the number of people holding those quantities of Bitcoin, but they’re a good metric to watch in terms of adoption of Bitcoin as a monetary technology. Each of those millions of addresses is an unbreachable bank in cyberspace, holding the world’s first unconfiscatable sound money. 

PayPal Launches a Stablecoin

On Monday, PayPal announced the launch of their very own stablecoin. 

According to PayPal: “PayPal USD (PYUSD) is fully backed by U.S. dollar deposits, short-term U.S. treasuries and similar cash equivalents, and can be redeemed 1:1 for U.S. dollars.”

Starting today and rolling out in the coming weeks, eligible U.S. PayPal customers who purchase PayPal USD will be able to: 

  • Transfer PayPal USD between PayPal and compatible external wallets  
  • Send person-to-person payments using PYUSD 
  • Fund purchases with PayPal USD by selecting it at checkout
  • Convert any of PayPal's supported cryptocurrencies to and from PayPal USD  

A lot of folks in the “crypto”/web3 space are super excited about this, since PayPal USD is an ERC-20 token issued on the Ethereum blockchain.

Now, we know that there is a huge demand for dollar-denominated stablecoins not just in the U.S. but around the world, and the widespread success of Tether is proof of that. 

But here’s why I think PayPal and their stablecoin are not to be trusted, and why I will not personally be using it:

  • I already deleted my PayPal account and had them delete all my information back in October 2022. 
  • Why? Because PayPal got caught after they updated their acceptable use policy to state that messages which are “fraudulent, promote misinformation or are unlawful” are in violation of the policy and subject to a fine of $2500. 
  • The “acceptable use” policy stated that determinations of which messages violated the policy would be made at “PayPal’s sole discretion.”
  • After many people, including myself, started calling out PayPal, deleting their accounts, and #DeletePayPal started trending, the part about misinformation was removed from the acceptable use terms.
  • However, PayPal’s website still lists “provide false, inaccurate or misleading information” under the “restricted activities” portion of its policy
  • According to Forbes: Violating the “restricted activities” portion does not result automatically in the $2,500 fine that breaching the “acceptable use” agreement does, but it may still result in charges, account suspension, or other punitive actions.
  • Additionally, according to PayPals own website, the actions they may take if you violate their terms include “Holding the balance in your Balance Account, the balance in your business account, or any money waiting to be claimed through your personal account if you do not have a Balance Account linked to your personal account, for up to 180 days if reasonably needed to protect against the risk of liability or if you have violated our Acceptable Use Policy.”
  • In case that part isn’t clear, that means PayPal can FREEZE any balance you have with them if they believe you have violated their policies, which, as we know from their sneaky addition then public removal of the misinformation clause, they can do at ANY TIME. 
  • Where does the PayPal USD stablecoin fit into this? Well, since it’s an Ethereum contract, they’ve conveniently added the ability to FREEZE all your funds directly into the contract! Huzzah!

So to sum it up, you have a company who wants to police your speech with visibility to all your financial transactions introducing a stablecoin where the contract allows them to immediately freeze your funds. 

In case you haven’t made the connection yet, this is exactly what governments will be able to do with a Central Bank Digital Currency. 

It’s about the connection between your personal life, your freedom of speech and expression, and your digital financial life. Because if you can control a person’s money, you can control that person’s actions.

So what can you do? Don’t use this shit. If you have money in PayPal, convert it to Bitcoin and take it into self custody while you still can. 

They can freeze the dollars in your bank account, they can freeze the stablecoins in your PayPal account, but they cannot freeze the Bitcoin in your self-custodied wallet. 

Bitcoin and Renewable Energy Penetration

Via Daniel Batten: New academic study highlights Bitcoin's positive impact as "a potential contributor to renewable energy penetration and net decarbonization of the energy grid." Slowly but surely, the narrative is changing.

The study, titled “Bitcoin’s Carbon Footprint Revisited: Proof of Work Mining for Renewable Energy Expansion” is available via the written version of this show, linked in the show notes.

From the abstract: “We systematically explore the state-of-the-art regarding the relationship between Bitcoin mining and grid decarbonization. We specifically focus on the role of flexible load response through proof of work mining as a potential contributor to renewable energy penetration and net decarbonization of the energy grid. The existing literature has not comprehensively examined this area, leading to conflicting views. We address the gap, analyzing the capabilities and limitations of Bitcoin mining in providing flexible load response services. Our findings show that renewable-based mining could potentially drive a net-decarbonizing effect on energy grids, although key adaptations in mining practices are needed to fully realize this potential. Overall, the paper suggests a re-evaluation of the environmental impact of Bitcoin mining, highlighting its potential role as a facilitator for renewable energy expansion, and decarbonization more broadly.”

This is yet another example of the narrative around Bitcoin mining shifting. Hopefully soon Greenpeace and the Change The Code anti-Bitcoin propaganda campaign will switch their efforts to attack an industry that is actually harming the planet, like the Newspaper Industrial Complex

Worldcoin Pushback

In case you missed it, OpenAI’s Sam Altman launched a dystopian shitcoin called Worldcoin which uses a creepy orb to scan your eyeballs in exchange for a token with a 25% allocation for VC investors and insiders. 

Thankfully, the global pushback has been fierce as everyone with half a brain realizes this is a creepy dystopian scam and the wet dream of the CIA and security state. 

Here’s a couple of examples:

Via No Bullshit Bitcoin: Kenyan Police Raided Worldcoin's Warehouse and Seized 'Machines That Store Data'

A team of police officers raided a warehouse run by the Worldcoin cryptocurrency in Nairobi and left with machines they believe stores data gathered by the firm, reported local media outlets.

Via Bloomberg: Don’t Scan Your Eyeballs for Worldcoin’s Magic Beans 

Here’s a quote from the article: 

“You might think such cautionary tales would be enough to slow down Worldcoin, a new crypto project that would double as a hilarious satire of tech industry excess if it weren’t an actual company that’s raised more than $100 million from some of the most famous investors in Silicon Valley. But you would be wrong. On July 24—amid warnings that its technology (more on what is actually promises to do below) represented a “potential privacy nightmare,” reports of deceptive sales tactics that target desperate people who don’t understand the technology or its potential risks, and the general common sense idea that one shouldn’t scan one’s eyeball in exchange for the equivalent of digital magic beans—Worldcoin’s creator, Tools for Humanity, went ahead and introduced its global eyeball scanning project anyway.”

I’m glad we’re seeing this pushback and hopefully this project will soon die and leave their dystopian tech bro VC investors poorer than when they started. 

Machankura Launches in Kenya

Via Bitcoin DADA: Machankura officially launches in Kenya

For those that don’t know, Machankura was developed by an amazing guy named Kgothatso, and it allows you to send and receive Bitcoin to your phone number, using a feature phone; no smartphone required. 

Every registered user can send and receive Bitcoin to their phone number from other Machankura users or to their Machankura lightning address.

You can redeem Azteco Vouchers directly into your Machankura wallet, which is great for users without internet connected devices. 

Users without internet connected devices can redeem Bitcoin from Azteco even when they are not in a position to visit the website. Users just need to dial the USSD and append the Azteco Voucher “reference code” found at the bottom of the voucher

How does it work? 

Users can access Machankura by dialing a USSD code which varies per country. 

USSD, which stands for "Unstructured Supplementary Service Data,” is a technology used by mobile phones to communicate with a service provider's computers. It is often referred to as "Quick Codes" or "Feature Codes".

When you dial the number for the first time, a Bitcoin wallet that is tied to your phone number is instantly created for you. You are required to create a PIN that will encrypt your wallet and will also be used to confirm all future transactions on Machankura.

Once your wallet has been created, a lightning address is generated for you using your phone number. For example: You can also change this to a username of your choice e.g Anyone can send you Bitcoin on this lightning address. You can also send Bitcoin to any user’s address.

The beauty of Machankura is you don’t need internet access to use Bitcoin; all communication is done via USSD over GSM cellular networks.

Machankura is now live in Kenya, Ghana, Malawi, Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa, and Zambia. 

But they also just launched a Machankura Beta using WhatsApp. Soon, you’ll be able to use Machankura in any country where WhatsApp is available, allowing you to access the same text interface as you would access via USSD, just with a persisted chat (and no character limits).

For more information, go to

This project is a great example of Bitcoiners building solutions to real world problems. Don’t have a smartphone with internet connectivity? That’s OK, you’ve got Machankura. 

YouTube Deplatforms Bitcoin Content Creators

Via Bitcoin Archive: YouTube terminated/purged 3 #Bitcoin channels in just 48 hours. No plausible explanation given. @maxkeiser and @stacyherbert's channel was purged of hundreds of hours of Bitcoin content. @CryptoNewsYes had his channel closed without warning. Decision final. @Plamen__Andonov Organiser of the Bulgarian Bitcoin Conference had his channel shutdown without warning. Decision final. @YouTubeCreators @YouTube need to reverse these capricious decisions ASAP and stop censoring legitimate Bitcoin content.

With all the genuine garbage out there on YouTube, it’s pretty absurd to see three different Bitcoiners all get deplatformed in the same week… These are people who are just trying to educate others about Bitcoin and share the news. They’ve put literally thousands of hours into building their channels and have viewers who find their content valuable all over the world. 

These channels also actively warn AGAINST crypto industry scams, trying to protect people from getting rekt by the innumerable shitcoin shills on YouTube who still somehow have active channels even though they recommend shitcoin ponzi schemes to their viewers…

This round of deplatforming is a great reminder of why open source, decentralized social media protocols like Nostr are so important moving forward. 

When we’re reliant on giant, centralized platforms like YouTube, Instagram, or X, we have zero power to control our experience with or access to their closed source, proprietary system. 

We’re at the mercy of tech overlords who can deplatform us faster than you can say “fuck the state.” And there is nothing you can do about it, pleb.

Nostr is like the hydra from greek mythology, cut off one head, and two grow in its place. Even if a government were to ban a particular Nostr client (like China did with Damus back in February), people can just switch to a different client. Even if they ban every nostr client, people will just build more.

In the words of Edward Snowden,“If a platform is a silo, a protocol is a river: no one owns it, and everyone is free to swim.”


Via Bloomberg: Cathie Wood Says SEC Will Approve Multiple Bitcoin ETFs at Once

  • ARK previously said it was first in line for spot-Bitcoin ETF
  • U.S. SEC has denied applications for similar ETFs for years

Via BTC Times: Nearly 50% Of Jack Dorsey’s Block Q2 Revenue Came From Bitcoin Transactions

  • Block Inc. announced a gross profit of $1.87 billion in the second quarter of 2023, marking a 27% increase compared to the same period last year. Of its total Q2 net revenue of $5.5 billion, $2.4 billion came from Bitcoin, according to the company.

Via Bitcoin Archive: BlackRock insiders say spot #Bitcoin ETF approval expected in "four to six months" according to Mike Novogratz, but take that with a grain of salt because Mike also got a Luna tattoo right before that whole ponzi collapsed…

Via Calle on Nostr: the upcoming beta release of the eNuts Cashu wallet will allow users to send Bitcoin over Nostr directly to your contact’s inbox

Via The Kobeissi Letter: The US government has spent an alarming $6.7 trillion over the last 12 months. 

  • This is up 14% since last year and just shy of the $7.6 trillion record during 2020. 
  • We are now spending just $900 billion less than a period when $4 trillion was handed out. 
  • The worst part? Over the last 12 months, the U.S. deficit is at $1.4 trillion. 
  • This is up $1 TRILLION compared to last year. Simply put, this is unsustainable.



To wrap up today’s show, let’s zoom out, and talk about the Bitcoin industry versus the “crypto” industry.

The “Crypto” industry is a total shitshow… The Worldcoin dystopian shitcoin being a recent example of a VC-backed token whose founders have zero moral compass being foisted upon unsuspecting people with shady marketing tactics. 

“Crypto” is predatory vaporware sold as get rich quick schemes to people who don’t know any better. 

The goal of people building in the “crypto” industry is not to create actual value; it’s to extract value and get out as fast as you can before the house of shit-covered cards comes crashing down around you. To promote scams that you KNOW are scams, but promote anyway because you made a quick buck. 

The Bitcoin industry, in contrast, is focused on creating value. On creating products and services that people will value highly enough to spend their hard-earned Bitcoin on, which is no easy feat. 

I’ve had the pleasure of meeting countless Bitcoiners in person and online. Whenever I talk to Bitcoiners, I get excited, because everyone is genuinely trying to build and create things that make the world a better place. 

Sure, for many the goal is to make money, and that’s great! If you’re running a business, you must make money, otherwise you’re not running a business, you’re running a charity. And when you create something valuable, you should receive value in return. 

But Bitcoiners differ from shitcoiners in that they want to make money in an ethical way by providing valuable goods and services for other people. For the Bitcoiners that I know, the goal is not to simply “make money” no matter the damage you do… The goal is to create value. To create something that leaves the world better than before. 

To create products that fill a genuine need, to create services that improve people’s lives, to create content that educates and inspires, to create real art that makes the world more beautiful, to write code that makes people more free – to show their proof of work to the world. 

I feel very fortunate to have met so many incredible and inspiring Bitcoiners spending their time and energy to build the future they want to see. 

So, cheers to the Bitcon builders, businesses, and creators out there. We’re just getting started.


And that’s a wrap on this week’s Bitcoin News Roundup.

You can find the written version of this show along with all the references via the link in the show notes or by going to 

You can find me on nostr by going to

If you want to follow THE Bitcoin Podcast on Twitter, go to @titcoinpodcast and @WalkerAmerica

You can also find the video version of this podcast at 

Bitcoin is scarce – there will only ever be 21 million – but Bitcoin podcasts are abundant. So thank you for spending your scarce time to listen to another fucking Bitcoin podcast. 

Until next time, stay free.





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