Presidential candidate Andrew Yang has claimed that a lack of clear regulation is harming America’s ability to compete in the “new marketplace” that is cryptocurrency and blockchain, stating that he would move to address the issue were he elected. Yang states that the country is also suffering from a lack of basic understanding of new technology at a congressional level, including surrounding cryptocurrencies.
Congress Lacks “Base Level of Understanding”
In a blog post on his site entitled ‘Regulating Technology Firms in the 21st Century’, Yang promises to adopt a “21st century framework” for regulation, including cryptocurrencies, citing the lack of “a base level of understanding” within congress around such matters as a huge problem in regulating it:
In order to regulate technology effectively, our government needs to understand it. It’s embarrassing to see the ignorance some members of Congress display when talking about technology, and anyone who watched Congress question Mark Zuckerberg is well aware of this.
Yang is referring to questions asked of Zuckerberg during his various congressional appearances, some of which have displayed a fundamental lack of understanding on the part of the questioner – which in the case of congress is also usually the lawmaker. The same has been seen in the cryptocurrency space, with questioners’ suppositions and opinions clearly formed not from research but from opinions of mainstream media.
Yang Promises Change
The biggest problem with this short-sighted if not completely blind approach, Yang says, is that it leads to regulation being both late and inadequate, allowing other countries to set the rules first and leaving America playing catchup, which has the knock-on effect of stifling creativity. It also results in the high levels of fraud we’re currently seeing the space, he adds. To counter this, Yang promises to promote legislation that defines what a cryptocurrency is, define which federal agencies have regulatory power over which asset types, provide for consumer protection, clarify the tax situation surrounding cryptocurrencies, and more. While all of these would be something akin to a dream come true for those with legitimate interests in seeing the blockchain and cryptocurrency sector growing, even going some way towards one would be a step in the right direction. Yang is known to be a favorite among the younger end of the voting spectrum, although he is still an outside bet for the Democratic nomination.