Because he speaks eloquently and with the authority of a presidential candidate, Andrew Yang managed to swindle a very large crowd at Consensus into thinking he actually said anything.

Yang, a Democrat, is actually running for President, and will actually be debating other actual candidates, such as actual former Vice President Joe Biden, later in the year. And he actually has some thought-provoking policies, such as “set up a division of the army to support public infrastructure” (cool!) and “instate universal basic income” ($1,000 a month!)

But he also has some half-formed thoughts about crypto, which, apparently, justified his appearance at the Consensus conference on its final day, today.

Speaking one-on-one with Coin Center communications director Neeraj K Agrawal, Yang made a lot of meaningless, disjointed overtures to things he’d briefly parsed on the internet.


“I was looking into the Wyoming regs,” he said at one point. “It was a really incredible story how that came about. As a builder-innovator, that [regulatory] environment  sounds like the worst of all scenarios.”

He said other words, ostensibly in some sort of order, leading to sentences like: “Putting money into people’s hands does not magically reconstitute society.” He spoke of the need for a cryptocurrency that integrated “meaning and monetary policy.”

The nearest thing to an articulation of an actual policy was when Yang said that “one of my ambitions is to have a currency that would most likely be on the blockchain that people find meaningful,” which would serve “creativity” and help us reconstitute the “struggle for purpose, fulfilment, meaning, and structure that Americans had in the previous era.”

So a currency on the blockchain will help us...pursue the American dream? Such a policy wonk!


Still, it was enough for crowds gathered here that he paid them lip service. They clapped like crazy! Indeed, despite the lack of substance, the room was suffused with homoerotic lunar energy.

Is Yang pretending to understand and care about crypto because he knows many of its exponents will uncritically follow anyone with above-marginal significance who references it bullishly, regardless of substance or intelligence (a la @jack)? (Though Yang does actually offer one substantive policy on his massive and comprehensive policy database, in which he calls for a more cohesive approach to crypto regulation.)

Of course, Yang’s cynicism might just be the natural byproduct of appearing at Consensus, where panelists, granted large audiences, must pass themselves off as experts. But Yang didn’t even try, and the people loved him.

Say what you will about John McAfee, who is also running for President while, apparently, running from the law, but at least his policies are...wait, never mind.

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