Elon Musk: Bitcoin Has Quite the Brilliant Structure

The founder of PayPal and CEO of Tesla, SpaceX and SolarCity Elon Musk spoke recently about Cryptocurrencies. As always, the opinion of Elon Musk on every single topic is quite interesting. Elon Musk spoke earlier this year in an interview on the ARK Invest podcast on February 19th and referred to Bitcoin for having “quite the brilliant structure.”

According to him, Digital Currencies are a far better and convenient way to transfer value than pieces of paper. He believes that Digital Currencies and Blockchain technology have a brilliant structure that needs more development, but on the downside Bitcoin is very CPU and Energy expensive and intensive. He stated:

“The Bitcoin structure is quite brilliant… one of the downsides of most Cryptocurrencies is that computationally they are quite energy intensive. So there have to be some kind of constraints on the creation of Digital Currencies. But it’s very energy expensive to create the incremental Bitcoin at this moment.”

Elon Musk is pro-crypto

Elon Musk also added that it wouldn’t be of Tesla’s interest to involve resources in involving themselves in Crypto and continue to accelerate the advance of sustainable energy. He added:

“Digital Currencies bypass currency controls, which will be fixed in the future. Paper money are going away and Crypto is a far better way to store and transfer value than just pieces of paper, that’s for sure.”

On his own Crypto holdings, Elon Musk tweeted recently that he only owns 0.25 BTC. They were given to him by a friend, but other than that he owns zero Digital Currencies. The Tech community is mostly favorable on the Crypto topic. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said earlier this month:

“Bitcoin feels it’s the one that wants to be currency the most, versus others that are doing more general purpose things or distributed computing… I think altcoins have generated some really amazing ideas, but I’m focused on currency and the transactional aspect.”

Bitcoin occupies a special place as a store of value for the whole Digital Currency community. Bitcoin acts as digital gold and it will further cement its spot. Mike Novogratz has recently stated:

“Bitcoin is going to be the digital gold, a place where you have sovereign money, it’s not U.S. money, it’s not Chinese money, it’s sovereign. Sovereignty costs a lot, it should!”

How is Cryptocurrency Gambling Regulated Around the World

Cryptocurrency gambling is the latest trend globally now, and it looks like it has come to stay. It’s simply the use of cryptocurrencies in the funding of gambling platforms instead of fiat tender. You might want to ask how it works, and the answer is a pretty straightforward one; it could either be on-chain or off-chain.

On-chain cryptocurrency gambling involves smart contracts that are made up of decentralized applications on a blockchain; these applications tend to have backend codes operating on a blockchain network rather than the orthodox centralized servers we are used to. Off-chain cryptocurrency gambling, on the other hand, has to do with online as well as physical casinos accepting cryptocurrencies into a virtual casino account.

Why is bitcoin used on casino platforms?

The flexibility that comes with using bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as a payment option has made it become a popular option amongst so many people who play slots. So many online platforms have found a way to incorporate its use to their platforms, and the gambling industry isn’t an exception. Bitcoin gambling casino is springing up daily, and these casinos have started to adopt the bitcoin payment method to enhance user experience

However, the only cog in the wheels of this innovation seems to be the regulations being carried out by different countries on the subject matter. It’s become quite common to see prompts on a list of casino sites showing you a warning that says you have been denied access or that your country doesn’t support your participation. These prompts are simply due to regulations put in place by the government for their disposition towards the use of bitcoin as a payment method.

How governments regulate cryptocurrency gambling?

Most government agencies resort to the traditional method of regulating online gambling, which involves banning the website’s IP address. However, this method of regulation is much easier to implement on off-chain cryptocurrency gambling platforms as these platforms have a centralized system. Users on off-chain platforms can maneuver the ban by simply rerouting their IP addresses through virtual servers in regions that are not affected.

Banning the websites on-chain casinos is way more tedious as the platform is decentralized, and this translates to a network that isn’t bound by a static IP address. Rather, the platform is jointly hosted by various computers stationed in different parts of the world. It is easy to see why so many countries do not regulate cryptocurrency gambling.

Countries where cryptocurrency gambling is being regulated

Countries like Italy, Poland, Greece, Belgium, and the United Kingdom regulate cryptocurrency gambling. So many countries do not support the use of bitcoin as a means of legal payment under their regulations. In countries where bitcoin isn’t accepted as a legal means of payment, the restriction extends to the use of bitcoin in gambling.

The United Kingdom gambling commission allows the use of bitcoin in gambling so far one can adhere to all of the existing gambling laws. There are a couple of sports betting sites in the UK that accept the use of cryptocurrency with proper regulation being done by UK gambling regulators. In Japan, the existing strict gambling rule established in the country also applies to the use of cryptocurrency. Still, there seem to be gradual changes with recent developments in the country.

Conclusion

Conclusively, Cryptocurrency gambling is regulated in different manners across the world, and it is one area that polarizes opinions. Truly, one cannot blame countries that have not bought into the idea of accepting cryptocurrencies as standard means of trading. However, there’s a possibility that many of those countries will eventually buy the idea of cryptocurrency gambling due to the burgeoning growth of the sector.

 

Are you Islamophobes, Hadi asks unity meet critics

PETALING JAYA: PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang has questioned if those who criticsised his party for taking part in two unity gatherings were Islamophobes.

Hadi said that he had taken note of brickbats after PAS formalised its alliance with Umno last month and the decision to attend the Malay Dignity Congress tomorrow.

Among the criticism was that nationalism clashed with Islamic principles. However, Hadi quoted the Quran to show that even though Prophet Muhammad preached to all communities, he himself was backed, politically, by his own community.

Hadi said that people should understand that Malay-Muslims were the majority in the country and that Islam could unite the community, without sidelining others.

It is compulsory for Muslims to defend their political power, Hadi said. “Is it wrong for Malays to unite under Islam to resolve issues affecting them? “Ask those who oppose such initiatives if they are Islamophobic or if they do not understand Islam,” he said in a Facebook post.

The Malay Dignity Congress is organised by University of Malaya’s Malay Excellence Studies Centre in collaboration with Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Universiti Putra Malaysia, and the Sultan Idris Education University.

Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad is scheduled to speak at the event, which Hadi and Umno leaders will attend.

The congress will discuss issues involving education, religion, culture, politics and the economy from a Malay perspective.

Hoffenheim shock Bayern 2-1 with Adamyan double

BERLIN: Hoffenheim’s Sargis Adamyan scored his first two Bundesliga goals to stun hosts Bayern Munich 2-1 on Saturday and earn their first ever win in Munich.

The 26-year-old Armenian striker scored either side of a Robert Lewandowski goal as Bayern crashed back down to reality four days after their 7-2 demolition of Tottenham Hotspur in London in the Champions League.

Bayern stayed top of the Bundesliga but are level on 14 points with Freiburg, who drew 2-2 with Borussia Dortmund, and RB Leipzig and Bayer Leverkusen, who drew 1-1.

The visitors had a golden chance after four minutes but Adamyan hesitated in his one-on-one with keeper Manuel Neuer to allow Jerome Boaeteng to clear at the last moment.

The Armenian made amends in the 54th when he fired in from a tight angle to surprise Neuer and grabbed his second in the 79th after Lewandowski had levelled with a 73rd-minute header.

Salah ke PAS, orang Melayu bersatu selesai masalah sendiri, soal Hadi

PETALING JAYA: Presiden PAS, Abdul Hadi Awang mendakwa pihak yang mengkritik keputusan parti Islam itu menyertai Kongres Maruah Melayu esok sebagai Islamofobia.

“Salahkah orang Melayu bersatu bersama Islam bagi menyelesaikan masalah dalaman mereka sendiri?

“Tanya kepada diri mereka yang menentang atau tidak senang dengan usaha ini, sama ada terpalit dengan penyakit Islamofobia.

“Al-Quran adalah panduan kepada penganut Islam yang setia dan memberi petunjuk bahawa setiap rasul memulakan dakwah Islam dengan menyelamatkan kaum bangsanya dahulu,” tulisnya dalam catatan di Facebook malam ini.

Kongres Maruah Melayu anjuran bersama Universiti Malaya, Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris, Universiti Putra Malaysia dan Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) dijadualkan bermula 8 pagi esok di Stadium Malawati, Shah Alam.

Penganjur dilaporkan berkata, kongres itu akan memberi perhatian kepada masalah orang Melayu dalam bidang pendidikan, agama, kebudayaan dan ekonomi.

Perdana Menteri, Dr Mahathir Mohamad dijangka menyampaikan ucaptama pada kongres itu yang akan turut dihadiri pemimpin PAS dan Umno.

Hadi berkata, ramai yang membidas PAS menyertai dua himpunan perpaduan bagi menyatukan orang Melayu, iaitu himpunan bersama Umno dan himpunan bersama ilmuwan serta badan bukan kerajaan.

Ahli Parlimen Marang itu berkata, alasan pertama mereka ialah semangat kebangsaan yang dikatakan bercanggah dengan Islam.

“Kedua, pihak yang menjadi penganjur dilihat berlaku pertembungan.

“Media PH yang setia kepada agenda perjuangan pragmatik atau oportunis tanpa berselindung mendedahkan pandangan pihak bukan Islam yang tidak senang dengan himpunan tersebut demi mendapat sokongan bukan Islam dan mengaburi mata umat Islam.”

Pochettino lost for words after Tottenham’s miserable week

BRIGHTON: Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino admitted he does not have the words to console disheartened players and fans after Saturday’s 3-0 defeat at Brighton compounded a miserable week for Spurs.

Four days on from a 7-2 thrashing at the hands of Bayern Munich in the Champions League, Pochettino was looking for a positive reaction.

Instead, Spurs looked like a side devoid of confidence after getting off to the worst possible start when captain Hugo Lloris gifted Brighton the opener and injured himself in the process.

Neal Maupay took advantage of Lloris’s fumble to head the hosts in front before 19-year-old Aaron Connolly scored twice for the Seagulls on his first Premier League start.

“We have to keep going. I have to say thank you for the fans. I feel sorry for them, it is massive effort to come and support us,” said Pochettino.

“Now you cannot find any words to console them and our players because I think we are living a tough moment.”

Last season’s Champions League finalists have won just three of their opening 11 games of the campaign and five of their last 19 dating back to when these sides last met in April.

While Pochettino could justifiably claim Bayern’s ruthlessness in midweek meant the scoreline was not a true reflection of his side’s performance, there was no excuse for being thoroughly outplayed by a Brighton side that had not won in six league games.

“We’ve been playing quite well, but while you don’t get results you always need that three points just to give you some confidence,” said Brighton boss Graham Potter.

“We attacked well, we defended well, we reacted when we lost the ball, we did everything we wanted to do. The personality on the pitch was really good.”

Tottenham were on the back foot from the off when injury was added to insult for Lloris.

The Spurs skipper dropped a simple cross into the box and as he fell backwards and landed awkwardly, Maupay stooped to head into an empty net.

Lloris was given oxygen and morphine before being taken to hospital and now seems certain to miss France’s upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers against Iceland and Turkey.

“He’s in the hospital at the moment, the club is going to communicate (the severity of the injury) because I think he suffered a big problem in his arm,” added Pochettino.

Emotional impact
“To concede and lose your captain was a massive emotional impact for the team.”

After a lengthy delay for Lloris to be stretchered off, Brighton pushed on rather than trying to protect their lead and were rewarded just after the half hour mark.

Connolly was twice the quickest to react as he turned Dan Burn’s cross goalwards and, after Paulo Gazzaniga spilled his first effort, the Irishman followed up for his first Premier League goal.

Tottenham have made a bad habit of letting leads slip in recent weeks against Arsenal, Olympiakos, Leicester and Bayern, but when forced to mount a fightback themselves were found wanting.

Pochettino sacrificed club record signing Tanguy Ndombele at half-time for Harry Winks and changed system to a 3-5-2.

However, rather than turning the tide, it was Brighton who got the third goal to kill the game off.

Connolly limped inside onto his right foot and curled a shot brilliantly into the far corner to round off an afternoon that he and the Seagulls will long remember.

Spurs now have a two-week break to contemplate their terrible start to the season, but Pochettino insisted he should take the burden of any blame.

“When we were on the top we were all together, and now when this type of moment arrives, we need to stick all together,” added the Argentine.

“I hope that all the pressure is coming to me and lets the players be free to recover and find the way to win all together.

“Now is a moment to be strong. We cannot underestimate this type of situation, but in times that are not so good there is always the possibility to make us stronger.”

Penang streets flooded because flood-gate not open

PETALING JAYA: Some streets in the Batu Lanchang area of George Town, Penang, were flooded in knee-deep water today reportedly because a flood-gate had not been opened.

Houses and cars were affected in Jalan Van Praagh, Solok Van Praagh, Jalan Tan Sri Teh Ewe Lim and around Jalan Sir Ibrahim, according to a media report.

Batu Lanchang assemblyman Ong Ah Teong was quoted as saying that a contractor for a flood mitigation scheme did not open the gate although he had been reminded to do so in the morning.

“He told me they couldn’t because they were casting concrete in the drain” which had been closed for repairs, he said, according to Star Online. “By the time the workers got the flood-gate fully opened, water had rushed into people’s homes already.”

A formal complaint is to be lodged with the state Drainage and Irrigation Department, the report said.

Paris police attacker had ‘radical vision of Islam’

PARIS: A staffer at Paris police headquarters who stabbed four colleagues to death seems to have adhered to “a radical vision of Islam”, anti-terror prosecutor Jean-Francois Ricard said Saturday.

The assailant, a 45-year-old computer expert, had been in contact with members of the “Salafist Islamist movement”, Ricard told reporters.

The attacker “agreed with certain atrocities committed in the name of that religion” and defended the Charlie Hebdo attacks in 2015, Ricard said.

He had also changed his attire in recent months and wished to no longer “have certain kinds of contact with women”.

Three police officers and an administrative worker – three men and a woman–died in the frenzied 30-minute attack on Thursday at the police headquarters, a stone’s throw from the Notre-Dame cathedral in the historic heart of Paris.

The assailant was eventually shot dead by police.

Two other people were injured in the Thursday lunchtime stabbing spree that sent shock waves through an embattled French police force already complaining of low morale.

Sources at the Paris prosecutor’s office said on Friday the case had been passed to the anti-terrorist prosecutor’s office PNAT after early enquiries suggested that the attacker, a convert to Islam, could have become radicalised.

The assailant, named as Mickael Harpon, was born on the French overseas territory of Martinique in the Caribbean.

Sources said he had worked in a section of the police service dedicated to collecting information on jihadist radicalisation.

Pompeo blasts ‘harassment’ by Congress over impeachment probe

ATHENS: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Saturday accused members of Congress of harassing his department to obtain documents linked to an impeachment investigation against President Donald Trump.

“There have been congressional inquiries that have harassed and abused State Department employees by contacting them directly and seeking to have them provide documents… that belong to the State Department, that are official US government records” he said during a visit in Greece.

“That’s harassment. And I’m never going to let that happen to my team.”

The US congressional committees leading the impeachment probe cranked up the heat on the White House this week amid mounting evidence that Trump may have illicitly used his office to enlist Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky’s help to damage the bid of 2020 Democratic rival Joe Biden in exchange for military aid.

After dodging questions for days, Pompeo finally confirmed Wednesday that he had been on the telephone call when Trump pressed Ukraine for damaging information on Biden.

Pompeo’s Democratic critics say he is now a “witness” caught in a conflict of interest that should rule him out of decisions on how the State Department deals with the investigation.

He has been accused of “stonewalling” the investigation and trying to limit what his staff could discuss if they testify.

Pompeo, who has been subpoenaed in the probe, said Saturday his department would provide “all the documents required by the law”, at a press conference in Athens.

The US top official was in Greece to reinforce cooperation with its NATO ally, signing an amendment to a mutual defence agreement.

Not interested – Khazanah’s reply on selling Plus highways

KUALA LUMPUR: Khazanah Nasional Bhd, the majority shareholder of highway operator Plus Malaysia Bhd, has affirmed that it is not going to sell its strategic asset to any party.

Khazanah managing director Shahril Riza Ridzuan said the group had so far rejected all takeover offers it received from local and foreign private entities for the country’s largest highway operator.

“There are many offers from different parties… but our reply to all of them is very simple – we are not interested in selling,” he said in an interview with TV3 tonight.

Shahril Riza added that those parties made offers to buy Plus at a much lower price than its real value.

Shahril Riza Ridzuan, managing director of Khazanah Holdings Bhd.

“If you want to buy (an asset) from the EPF (Employees Provident Fund) or Khazanah, you should offer a fair market price,” he said.

The interested parties proposed to use the difference between the price paid and the real value as discounted toll to the people.

“If you want to give discounts, it should be from your profits, not from us,” said Shahril Riza.

Khazanah owns 51% of Plus while the remaining is owned by EPF. The highway operator was taken over in 2011 with a transaction value of RM32 billion.

He added that Khazanah as an investment arm of the government must ensure that strategic assets such as Plus are not sold to anyone who might only be interested in making profits without any consideration for the people.

“If Plus makes profits, it goes back to the government through Khazanah, or to Malaysians via EPF. So if you allow private parties to take over Plus, and those parties make a lot of profit, people are not going to be happy,” he added.