Speaking at a virtual panel event for the Richard Nixon Foundation this week, the billionaire said bitcoin posed a threat to traditional fiat currency and that it “especially threatens the US dollar”.
To understand this, you have to realise that Thiel is a fan of bitcoin but is worried about China’s involvement in bitcoin, where around two-thirds of all cryptocurrency mining takes place.
“From China’s point of view, they don’t like the US having this reserve currency because it gives us a lot of leverage over Iranian oil supply chains and all sorts of things like that”, he said.
“Even though I’m a pro-crypto, pro-bitcoin maximalist person, I do wonder whether at this point, bitcoin should also be thought [of] in part as a Chinese financial weapon against the US. From a geopolitical perspective, the US should be asking some tougher questions about exactly how that works.”
Thiel also said that China’s efforts to launch its own state-backed digital currency was “not a real cryptocurrency”, adding, “that’s just some sort of totalitarian measuring device”.