Episodes
Ari Redbord, Head of Legal and Government Affairs at TRM Labs, talks about the sanctions on Tornado Cash, and the role of blockchain analytics tools in crypto.    Show highlights: Ari’s background as a federal prosecutor and his work for the US Treasury why regulators sanctioned Tornado Cash, according to Ari why the Ronin hack was important for regulators to start taking DeFi hacks more seriously the fact that for the first time the Treasury Department sanctioned software whether the...
Published 08/19/22
Published 08/18/22
Welcome to The Chopping Block! Crypto insiders Haseeb Qureshi, Tom Schmidt, and Tarun Chitra chop it up about the latest news in the digital asset industry. In this episode, Laura Shin, host of Unchained and author of The Cryptopians, also joined the conversation.    Show topics: What Tornado Cash is and why it got sanctioned by the OFAC The difference between Tornado Cash and blender.io  Whether privacy is dead as a category and whether regulators are going after it How these sanctions...
Published 08/18/22
Surojit Chatterjee, chief product officer at Coinbase, comes to talk about what products Coinbase is building, how it can thrive in such a competitive landscape, how to onboard billions of users into crypto, and much more.    Show highlights: how Surojit got into crypto and ended up at Coinbase what sets Coinbase apart from the competition how to bring billions of customers to crypto  Surojit’s mental model of a bridge between the fiat world and the crypto world how Coinbase is integrating...
Published 08/16/22
Jerry Brito, executive director of Coin Center, talks about Tornado Cash, why it was sanctioned, and what this means for privacy in crypto.    Show highlights: what Blender.io is and how it relates to Tornado Cash how hackers have used Tornado Cash to launder money whether the Office of Foreign Assets Control made a mistake, according to Jerry how Americans were affected by the sanctions why Jerry believes OFAC should have done an analysis to estimate how many people would be impacted by...
Published 08/12/22
Welcome to The Chopping Block! Crypto insiders Haseeb Qureshi, Tom Schmidt, and Robert Leshner chop it up about the latest news in the digital asset industry. In this episode, Hasu, the gourmand of governance and Rune Christensen, chief mischief maker at MKR, discuss how to manage a DAO, their respective visions for MakerDAO, and much more.    Show topics:   What MakerDAO is, how DAI works and whether it is the “central bank” of DeFi How the visions for MakerDAO of Hasu and Rune differ...
Published 08/11/22
Layne Haber, Co-founder of Connext Network, discusses the Nomad bridge hack, how it happened, and what can be done to prevent these exploits.    Show highlights: what Nomad is and how it works how the hack occurred and what the vulnerability was how much TVL the protocol had and how much of it was drained why the Nomad hack was unique how this exploit resembled the DAO hack on Ethereum the bounty program that Nomad offered and how hackers responded to it how Nomad is working with law...
Published 08/09/22
Kevin Zhou, co-founder of Galois Capital, comes to talk about the possibility of a Proof of Work chain on Ethereum after the Merge, the LUNA death spiral, how he plans to play the Merge, and much more...    Show highlights: how Kevin got started in crypto  what Galois Capital is and what its investment thesis is why Kevin was more vocal than most about the possibility of the LUNA death spiral whether Kevin made money out of the Terra collapse and what was his strategy what the difficulty...
Published 08/05/22
Lyn Alden, founder of Lyn Alden Investment Strategy, and Mauricio di Bartolomeo, cofounder of Ledn, discuss how inflation could affect the digital asset industry. Show highlights: how Mauricio’s upbringing in Venezuela and firsthand experience with inflation led him to Bitcoin what a “long-term debt cycle” is and why Lyn thinks the 2020s could be similar to the 1930s and 1940s the difference between inflation and hyperinflation how inflation changes consumer investing and purchasing...
Published 08/02/22
Welcome to The Chopping Block! Crypto insiders Haseeb Qureshi, Tom Schmidt, and Tarun Chitra chop it up about the latest news in the digital asset industry. In this episode, Balaji Srinivasan discusses his latest book, “The Network State, how different digital tools like crypto will help empower network states, and analyzes how crypto fits into the current political environment.    Show topics: why Balaji wrote a book and why he is so enthralled with a digitized future what a “network...
Published 07/31/22
Marisa Tashman, policy counsel at Blockchain Association, analyzes the US Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) decision to name nine tokens as securities and investigate whether Coinbase lists securities. Show highlights:  why the SEC named tokens as securities in an insider trading case where no exchanges or token teams are listed as defendants  what happens if the Coinbase insider trading case is settled or goes to court why the SEC’s actions should be considered “regulation by...
Published 07/29/22
Two crypto law experts, WassieLawyer and Adam Levitin, analyze the bankruptcies of 3AC, Celsius, and Voyager. Show highlights: the difference between Voyager and Celsius “custody” and “earn” deposits why Celsius commingling customer custody and earn deposits could make it harder for creditors to get their money back what similarities and differences the Voyager and Celsius bankruptcies have how Chapter 11 bankruptcy works why Wassie and Adam believe Celsius might have engaged in shady...
Published 07/26/22
Adam Cochran, partner at Cinneamhain Ventures, discusses the impact of 3AC’s impending liquidation. Show topics: why 3AC founders (and family members) are listing themselves as creditors what the “corporate veil” is and why it matters regarding 3AC where retail investors stand in the pecking order of creditors  why Adam doesn’t believe we know the full story about 3AC’s downfall, despite liquidators leaking a 1,000-page report about it what creditors might do with 3AC’s yacht why Adam is...
Published 07/22/22
Nelson Rauda, Salvadoran journalist for El Faro, comes to talk about the impact of Bitcoin in El Salvador, the needs of Salvadoran people, Bitcoin City and the Bitcoin Bond, and much more.    Show highlights: Nelson’s story and how he began covering BTC what kind of politician and president Nayib Bukele was before BTC what the financial reality was for Salvadoran people before the implementation of BTC the reasons for the high rates of unbanked people in El Salvador how Bukele changed the...
Published 07/19/22
In a highly educational conversation, Wassielawyer, a lawyer specializing in restructuring and insolvency, discusses the bankruptcy and liquidation of Three Arrows Capital, plus sheds light on similar processes unfolding with Celsius and Voyager. Show highlights: Wassielawyer’s experience as a lawyer and his professional background what the liquidation process looks like and what drives a company to get into this situation what the creditors of 3AC can expect from the liquidation process...
Published 07/15/22
Welcome to The Chopping Block! Crypto insiders Haseeb Qureshi, Tom Schmidt, and Tarun Chitra chop it up about the latest news in the digital asset industry. In this episode, Anatoly Yakovenko, Tsar of Solana, joins the show to discuss the use cases of Solana, whether it’s actually a blockchain, how Solana scales, and much more!    Show topics: What Anatoly thinks of Andre Cronje's opinion that Solana is not a blockchain Why Solana has had so many instances of downtime Whether Solana is the...
Published 07/14/22
Ryan Berckmans, Ethereum investor and community member, and Alexandre Bergeron, Bitcoin investor, discuss Lido’s dominance as a liquid staking provider, whether that issue can be resolved, and how it could be a centralizing force for Ethereum. Show highlights: what stETH is, what the uses cases are for stETH, and why it is important how Lido had a first-mover advantage and how that kicked off network effects whether the liquid staking derivatives system is one of a “winner-take-all” how...
Published 07/12/22
Amir Haleem, CEO of Nova Labs and founder of Helium, talks about the use cases for Internet of Things (IoT), how blockchain and crypto help to construct a decentralized internet infrastructure, and what is the future of Helium. Show highlights: what Helium is and what it is trying to solve how, after struggling for years, introducing crypto tokens, finally helped Helium grow who the users of Helium are and how they differ from each other how Helium grew to have one million devices around...
Published 07/08/22
Hasu, strategic advisor to Lido, and Tarun Chitra, founder of Gauntlet, explain everything about staked ETH, aka stETH, how it should be priced, Lido’s market dominance, and much more. Show highlights: the role of Lido, what stETH is, and what its benefits are whether Ethereum’s lack of delegated proof of stake contributes to the need for stETH why stETH is not mispriced and why it doesn’t necessarily have to be worth 1 ETH the inherent risks associated with stETH how there was not enough...
Published 07/05/22
Badiucao, Chinese artist and activist, talks about the importance of NFTs for political activism, the role of China in his career as an artist, the significance of blockchain technologies to resist censorship, and much more. Show highlights: why Badiucao became an artist and how the censorship in China brought him to NFTs how Badiucao only learned about Tiananmen Square when he was 22 years old  why Badiucao took up work as a preschool teacher in Australia how anonymity is important for...
Published 07/01/22
Welcome to The Chopping Block! Crypto insiders Haseeb Qureshi, Tom Schmidt, and Tarun Chitra chop it up about the latest news in the digital asset industry. In this episode, Taylor Monahan, matriarch of Metamask, joins the show to discuss the contagion of major crypto firms, the bear market, SBF saving crypto, and much more! Show topics: The importance of UX and security How Three Arrows Capital’s practice of borrowing to leverage their bets has caused a crisis for crypto lenders that...
Published 06/30/22
Shaun Maguire and Michelle Bailhe, partners at Sequoia, discuss their long term view and thesis about crypto, what do they look for to invest in a crypto project, the takeaways from the blowup of Terra, the insolvency of crypto companies, and much more. Show highlights: what is Sequoia’s long term view and thesis about the crypto industry how different our lives will look in 20 years from now due to blockchain technology how Sequoia had to adapt to invest in this new asset class and what...
Published 06/28/22
Derek Hsue, cofounder at Reverie, discusses the recent controversial decisions by Solend DAO and Bancor, the importance of establishing processes for black swan events, and whether decentralized governance truly exists. Show highlights: what situation prompted Solend to feel it was in jeopardy what Solend DAO’s response was to that situation why Derek views it as “the nuclear option” why the proposal sparked an outcry from the crypto community whether this issue could have been prevented or...
Published 06/24/22
Caroline Pham, commissioner at the Commodities Futures Trading Commission, discusses how we should build a regulatory framework for crypto assets, whether the SEC and CFTC should work together, what were the consequences of the Terra collapse, and much more. Show highlights: how Cmr. Pham got started in crypto and became a CFTC commissioner the importance of the regulatory strategy around crypto what crypto’s role is in the financial system how bitcoin is a sort of money outside of the...
Published 06/21/22
Mika Honkasalo, independent crypto researcher, discusses what is happening with Celsius and Three Arrows Capital, the importance of having proper risk management, and the contagion effects on the industry.   Show highlights: why is it so significant that Celsius paused withdrawals what is stETH and why is it important to understand the Celsius situation how the Luna/UST debacle started a contagion effect in the crypto space why Celsius’s investors won’t bail the company out what will...
Published 06/17/22