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>And this idea that governments couldn't control Bitcoin is just laughable. They could get into the mining business and distort the currency beyond repair. They could setup Bitcoin->USD/JP/etc exchanges to track people. They could simply unite together and declare it illegal internationally. Plenty of things.

Getting into the mining business would only help bitcoin, by further securing the network. It certainly won't allow them to distort the currency, since the rate of coin generation is built into the protocol.

Setting up exchanges really wouldn't undermine anything, people just won't use them if they know they're being tracked by them.

Uniting together and declaring it illegal is their only option, but they will have trouble justifying why it should be illegal. And they will also have trouble enforcing it, short of shutting down the entire internet.

It really is a fascinating technology, and if you truly want an alternative way of securely sending money, I'd suggest doing more research on it.

A big enough mining pool could DoS some or all users by consistently producing a longer block chain than anyone else's (which clients would accept as authoritative) while omitting any transactions they don't wish to let through.

This is true. A 51% attack in which the attacker prevents all transactions from going through is probably bitcoin's largest vulnerability.

However, even at today's difficulty levels, this attack would be very expensive to maintain. With the introduction of dedicated mining ASIC's coming soon, the difficulty will rise substantially, which will offer even more security against this type of attack.

On the other hand, even with those ASICs, the government could buy more of them than anyone else. And then make us pay for them. I don't think the threat is worth discounting.

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