There are two broad paths developing, between two very different interests, regarding crypto regulation.
1) The people, groups, corporations etc that were raised within the corporate framework of enforced obedience. https://cointelegraph.com/news/oxford-business-law-blog-radical-rethink-of-blockchain-regulation-is-imperative/amp
These promote the use of regulation as “a limiter of crime and terrorism”.
2) The people, groups and other interests that have survived outside that structure.
https://web.archive.org/web/20191030061107/https://www.foreignaffairs.com/sponsored/bitcoin-unbanked and https://thehill.com/opinion/technology/380115-for-worlds-unbanked-bitcoin-is-the-future
These promote regulation as a progressive mechanism, one small part of which is limiting crime, and all of which is designed to ultimately encourage self regulation i.e., ethics being a factor that affects success.
These two paths are one way of delineating the two competing models of crypto development. Worth noting too that parallels these two paths have with past political conflicts can probably be used to describe how they will evolve. For example in the twentieth century the conflict between the Soviet Union and the United States was often articulated by each side as being a parallel to one of those two paths e.g. 'freedom to innovate' vs 'freedom from hunger'
The endpoint of crypto regulation is not hard to figure out.
Any country that allows complete freedom to innovate within its borders, and provides the least insecure, or most secure, environment, eventually will lead.
That means no forced dependence nor vulnerability of the sector with regard to government bureaucracies, etc.
The sector should have a civilized environment in which to progress. No meddling, neither by criminals nor ‘hungry bureaucrats’. No agenda of any kind forced on any part of the sector. No monitoring of coins nor users etc under guise of “looking for terrorists/criminals/etc”.
In every country, it is generally considered an individual’s right to interfere in, or otherwise stop, a crime.
The more 'indigenous' the population, the better crime is defined and the more it is considered a duty rather than a right, to interfere in crime.
When a few individuals, or a group, try to take that power away under guise of ‘law enforcement’, eventually those individuals, or that group, will promote the idea that since they have given themselves one power they inherently own other powers, and since they ‘had rights’ over one group they inherently have rights over another group.
It becomes like the old joke about a guy who asked his neighbor if he could borrow his gun. Once the neighbor lent him the gun he said to the neighbor “Your money now”. It sounds like severe stupidity, but that is the law enforcement environment in most developed countries.
Governments today range from very intrusive to extremely intrusive. There are no minimalist governments today, but there are countries where a greater percentage of the population understand the general idea of natural liberties and rights, which minimizes 'bureaucratic greed' in government naturally, so at some point there are likely to be two or three competing models of crypto development.
1) Well educated countries with strong democratic education are likely to lead what is now considered the 1st world. Countries in Scandinavia and a few other areas will probably move ahead the most within a few years.
2) The ‘hungriest’ reasonably democratic third world countries are likely to completely eliminate any regulations regarding crypto, which will be a test of their local societies. Less developed Asian and Latin American countries with a lot of ‘pirate tech’ are likely to develop very quickly.
3) There may be a trend among some governments in either group to poach skilled people from other regions. This may be the endpoint of schemes like https://e-resident.gov.ee/ details https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/12/18/estonia-the-digital-republic which, although dubious commercially, will have a broad civilizing effect on society as long as they are respected, a sort of natural evolution of melting pots away from coercion. If this becomes a trend then each of the most successful members of the first two groups would be a subgroup of this category. This would force some of the brighter minds in government to refine “melting pot” laws.
In most countries today, young people who tend towards crime follow one of two paths. If they have a patron who is vested in the system, they are encouraged to become police officers or soldiers. Honest children are seldom told “become a police officer”, but a misguided young person will be encouraged in that direction. The second option, for misguided youth who lack a clear path into law enforcement or the military is simple crime. They identify their need, usually cash, and try to pivot around the artificial barriers created by their colleagues in government.
Once a society is developed to the point where poverty and financial ambition are not primary, then other human flaws come into play. The human tendency though is not towards disease and failure, where disease and failure aren't necessary.
In today’s world the one single variable that most encourages the flawed side of human nature is simple lack of space. The vast majority of people have never experienced privacy and spend their lives in a controlled suicidal decline. Once sciences have developed adequately, and travel into new space is easy, humans will start developing senses that very few people in crowded societies are even aware of.
Eventually the focus will shift from ‘regulation’ to ‘facilitation’. Maybe in 20 or 50 years or so there will be not even the slightest interest in regulating, but countries will start investing heavily in facilitating the digital currency sector, to the extent needed.
For some time in the future there will continue to be a balance between “limited space” and the controls needed to prevent problems from that. So gradually government power will probably transition to sub economies, coins for example, and there are likely to be the same issues as now occur between governments, except between small economies. That means that there will be no real change in how people operate, until science allows easy access to, and survival in, places distant from earth. But those sciences will not develop adequately through conventional ways of developing science and technology, colleges, corporations etc.
So the central issue in developing the coin economy is not “how should it be regulated?”, but rather “what sort of social structures should coins be built around?”.
The melting pot has served its purpose, and is starting to create a growing bill that will have to be paid in the future.
Those same people whose first inclination is to regulate will also tend to draw inaccurate lessons from history, suggesting that a global “melting pot” mentality is necessary.
We can only wait and see which stupidities cause the most problems.
~~~~Perceived Regulatory Environment, By Country/Region~~~~
This is one opinion, subjective and based on guesses & observations.
- The United States
The United States is arguably the wealthiest large country, with easy facility for most industry, but for totally new coin projects it would be a nightmare. A person can look at examples at the ‘Dread Pirate Roberts’ case.
Or trends like http://www.uscourts.gov/news/2018/06/28/2017-wiretap-report-orders-and-convictions-rise or https://web.archive.org/web/*/http://www.uscourts.gov/news/2018/06/28/2017-wiretap-report-orders-and-convictions-rise
A person should be very cautious developing any coin within the United States, simply because surveillance has reached such an obscene level that there is no protection from bad actors in government.
Unless you have very powerful connections and a lot of money, the United States is not the place to innovate.
China is well known for its aggressive stance towards dissidents https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organ_harvesting_from_Falun_Gong_practitioners_in_China but generally has given more leeway to innovators. A person should hesitate to start a project in China but the fact that they have been very flexible with things that expand their economy will probably make them more attractive to new projects than some other countries known for comparably weak human rights environments.
India stands out for the diversity of its populations. Many countries had, or have, numerous cultures within, but India is one of the few well educated countries where entire regions may speak different languages and have distinct cultures. So far India has tried to imitate the Western melting pot model. There are remote areas of India where killings by police and soldiers are unreported in the media https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_rights_issues_in_Northeast_India and the guise, as in other melting pots, is “terrorism”. There are also, though, strong pressures within India to civilize along more tolerant lines and create an authentic federation of sovereign cultures, rather than an endlessly violent melting pot.
Whether India becomes a group of powerful economies will probably depend on their ability to simply keep safe distance between competing cultures. India, so far, seems to be in a stronger long term position than China and the United States.
Russia seems to have declined substantially since the breakup of the Soviet Union, but they may be ideally situated to become a substantial center of the coin economy. Geography, education, history and an isolationist mentality may lead them to be the center of a bloc that would give stability to other groups.
I personally would hesitate to work in a country whose leaders hold up hitmen as heroes, and where journalism is one of the most dangerous professions https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_journalists_killed_in_Russia but otherwise Russia would seem to be in a strong position.
- Latin America
Latin America is clearly developing into one large anti U.S. bloc. There is little doubt that the region will form a group of powerful economies, with great freedom of travel, and a wide diversity of environments. Once Latin America stabilizes it may become one of the most attractive regions for new coins. This bloc will probably align most closely with a South Asian bloc that has less restrictive, or no regulation.
- South Asia
As long as Africa can start to develop without interference from the superpowers, its tribalism could lead it to become a very powerful center in the digital economy. Unfortunately Africa attracts an extremely toxic corporate interference due to its wealth of natural resources.
Corruption caused by outside interests trying to control resources will probably limit development in most African countries for at least another decade. But those few African countries that manage to shake off outside interference and develop independently could be a surprise factor in the digital economy,
Africa and Australia have the greatest 'untapped' original diversities in terms of 'ways of thinking'. If they manage to throw off colonialist interference these two places might start producing dramatic new advances in science within the context of tribal ai networks, but the quality of their 'product' will be a direct function of their independence.
- The Conservative Muslim Bloc & Israel
Most conservative Muslim countries will probably form a single powerful bloc, and regulations will necessarily push society in a liberal direction, i.e., they will learn that external regulations in a free market are harmful, and there will be pressure to encourage self regulation at the local level.
The coming war is not really between aspiring Nassers and aspiring Ayatollahs, as much as it is between various tribal affinities. Unfortunately it is the melting pot that supplies arms on all sides, so it is the melting pot that will continue winning.
Israel is in a difficult situation. The 1973 war allowed peace for a while, but people are still waiting for an event, specifically some use of mass weapons, probably in a similar environment elsewhere, which either makes Israel no longer viable or forces a “hard” peace on Israel. For the time being, Israel has a very well educated tech sector and many advantages over many other small countries, but until Israel’s status is “legitimized” through a credible hard peace, it will continue becoming less and less viable as a country.
At some point Israel will either not exist, or it will exist under terms dictated by others. At that point, if it exists, it will be as a sort of protectorate of the Muslim bloc, and will be on the same ground as its neighbors with respect to regulations and laws.
There may be some scenario under which Israel is survivable long term, but it seems unlikely. A never ending series of 'melting pot wars' to create weaker and weaker ethnic alliances in the region has given it some space, but that strategy may run out of gas soon. The wisest attempt at survival would probably be to rebuild ethnic rivalries around digital currencies, a modern Olympics.
Europe will probably see a revival in global power as long as its parts become more independent, something which will encourage local competition and give it a stronger foundation. In other words Western Europe will start recovering once it stops pretending it is one bloc, drops the 'European Community' nonsense, etc.
- A Native American Bloc
If the United States continues its rapid decline, and a Native American bloc can effectively federate outside the framework of the U.S., the Native American bloc will be the 'Far East' bloc vs the UK, Scandinavia and Europe in the West.
At that point Scandinavia would be the 'new' meeting point of eastern and western culture, a place for Europe to redeem itself.
Native Americans have vast 'pending' clout globally, and they stand to have political power relative to other countries that has not been seen yet on a global scale.
Whether this develops in Latin America and then moves north, or starts with concessions from Canada and the U.S. remains to be seen, but the latter is unlikely.