FOREWARD:To visit previous years of my blog, click the year you desire to view: 2017. At least for now, my Blog has nothing at all fancy going for it on it's layout. It's hand-coded on Windows Notepad. I can't guarantee all the links still work as some media out there are really that fickle!
 You're encouraged to bookmark and spread the word about it if you appreciate this ad-free blast of whatever-it's-worth which I offer as I find the time. Notifications of updates are given on Twitter if you follow @windmechanic and if you do follow me and work in the wind industry or related energy renewables, please tweet me of that fact so I can add you to my GoodGreen list..

DISCLAIMER: Links I provide are not guaranteed to be either ad-free or malware-free. Clicking on any of them does not necessarily imply any endorsement. Furthermore, any and all advice I may dispense on this site is done solely at no cost or compensation from anyone or any corporation, although I cite publicly-released sources for some of my commentary. This page is cookie-free as I hate the calories as much as you do. I am simply an investor who strives for continued education and speculates on certain things, never betting the whole damned ranch. You would be wise to heed such advice as well, betting only what you can afford to lose.

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1-18-18
Greetings, y'all,

Yesterday, Bitcoin fell below 10k USD for the first time since... last month. If you're a recent buyer and n00b HODLer, you're feeling the pain, but for me? It's just another day at the office! Already, BTC bounced back above 11k and trying to steady in that range after a dive to near 9.2k on Bitstamp. Need to read anything to settle your nerves? This is the best I've found, but personally I don't need it at all. Today is another Meh Momenttm for me. Joseph Young gives us much more insight into this regarding South Korea. He reports an official there allegedly sold crypto holdings before giving everyone there the FUD which is causing so many headaches. As you can see from it, Bitcoin is truly international, yet gives everyone keeping up with it a true microscope to view how our respective governments look at We The People. THINK ABOUT IT and be prepared to vote accordingly when the time comes. Other Bitcoin news is coming to the surface, y'all! If the price remains low, many Americans with stock accounts and some extra bonus $$ could do really well this year. You see, GBTC on the NYSE will have a 91 to 1 stock split on 1/26. Peaking around $3400 a month ago, they're down to under $1700 so if you're into stocks, this is one to consider if you're a true crypto believer. It's on my radar and the upside potential is significant if your risk appetite is higher than average. Dow Jones News reported "The trust started 2017 at $121.65 and then rocketed along with the cryptocurrency itself. Volume picked up last month despite the increasing difficulty to trade considering the per-share price gains. But it will likely spike even more than the 90 times additional stock which will outstanding, that as the trust will become easier to trade on a price basis." Again, this is but a suggestion you may consider. I'm not a financial advisor and am certainly not always correct on these matters. Don't invest any more than you can afford to lose and "NEVER bet the whole ranch!"

 Want to read through a Twitter bulleted list of 41 different points of why Ethereum and Proof-of-Stake are bad ideas? Within it, there are some valid points so I present this link and encourage you to pop some corn if reviewing all of them. Tron crashed recently but is recovering. Lots of rumors abound. I bring this up since I've mentioned Tron before in this Blog. Want an entertaining Twitter thread of a different subject? NSFW due to language, but as you'll figure out soon 'nuff, some things don't change, they indeed remain the same! Brutalist Press gives an interesting take on some Arkancide. Why hasn't the Main Stream Media covered any of this? It's beyond sad that Haiti has gotten so much bad press. Considering it's located in a primary hurricane and earthquake zone with the fact that it's people are so poor they've stripped away much of the forests, then learning these allegations of embezzlement of donations meant for hurricane relief didn't help matters any, which is germane for this in the first place! Occasionally, everybody heard about The Bird. Watch this twitter video for the best photobomb in a TV weather segment I've seen. Usually, a spider spins the story, but as you'll see - the Raven keeps speaking to us, even if upside down.

 I'm not doing any price action coverage today, but encourage you to monitor happenings within cryptocurrency, especially through prices via CoinMarketCap or WorldCoinIndex then the news which shapes it, some which you'll get my take right here. You can learn of ICO's through ICODrops or other sources if you have BTC or ETH and willing to tread in these waters. Definitely do your research! The news will be the dominating factor in the short term. Bix Weir reminded in a recent email that Clif High's 13,800 USD BTC prediction is still on for late Winter/early Spring. I'll keep on HODLing but won't rely solely on Bitcoin for my financial happiness. My work continues and I'm watching for other opportunities. More to come.

Gracias & Alles Liebe,

Mark

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1-13-18
Greetings, y'all,

 This installment of the Blog has no crypto price coverage this time. There have been recent developments which have already resulted in both decreases and increases in Bitcoin and related alts. I suspect the present trading range will break free and bring more value. I may present a price update Sunday but have plenty to do this weekend. It was a busy holiday season where I work and I continue learning the job, getting better at it while awaiting the developments in crypto which will help many of you to both improve lives and retire early!

 UPDATE: Electrum Bitcoin Wallet has v3.0.5 available as security vulnerability was not entirely fixed with v3.0.4 so if you've not been made aware over the past week, check and be sure! When it comes to cryptosecurity, I won't hold back any punches! This is true with my proposed cryptocurrency course I hope to teach and especially in regard to reporting such developments to keep HODLers safe through knowledge. Tyler S. on YouTube gave a POWERFUL reason to only entrust buying a hardware wallet from the manufacturer and NOT second-hand from eBay. Bear in mind, this is the subject where the video starts. However, you may review the whole thing to learn more about why Litecoin is poised to gain incredibly during 2018. A victory for Bitcoin HODLers! A Beijing court dismisses a lawsuit against bitcoin exchanges. They encourage their citizens to be careful with crypto, and that should apply universally! Even better, the Koreans realize they're cutting off their own economic heads if they were to fully implement a cryptocease. Joseph Young on Twitter gives us more insight to the latest developments in South Korea. Here on the American homefront, why a story as this doesn't surprise me is reason enough that societal revolution should already be in the works! Sorry, but crony nonsense as this doesn't make America great! Trump of course LEADS and MAKES the news. If not regarding remarks about certain nations, there's plenty going against him by the media. Mark Dice posted this letter, reportedly written by Stormy Daniels whom reports have been circulating of an alleged affair with the POTUS. Daniels, who indeed published a book, states she would've mentioned such inside it. Hey, I'm trying to balance things here and this ain't no easy high-wire act! Back to Bitcoin. Want a Trump LOL Moment? Andre in Norway gives us a zinger! Before each of you get your underwear in a bind over the IRS and new laws in Congress, understand how extremely inefficient our government itself is! Stefan Molyneux shows this to us too well! They do it to make examples out of We The People, even if it costs them too much money, yet I get into arguments of how "sound" the banks are. Give me a damned break, people! These banks are more ready than ever to collapse under their own hubris as Jamie Dimon admitted that Bitcoin is not a fraud after all. Of course we know him to be very sneaky and I'm willing to wager what occurred months ago was likely calculated for a huge dip and scoop-up operation which is exactly why HODLing securely is critical unless you need to spend it. Many support me on this thinking. I'm tempted to ask when Dimon will release the silver shorts so the metal can go stratospheric as it should've done a long, long time ago. You see, I'm ready to make profits there, too! Want to learn the nuts and bolts of the Lightning Network? It's technically-intensive so be ready to put on your mind's "game face" for it.

 Some in Guymon, OK where I presently reside had wondered last March why I stood staunchly against the votes of both my state representatives. Former state senator Marlatt cited a "Big Brother" complex which I then countered with a takeaway of 21 million records of federal government employees, likely by Chinese hackers in 2014 and featured in a major Washington DC newspaper which I cited the date and article before those attending and later broadcast on PTCI's local access Ch. 2. Now, the Panhandle's own Casey Murdock, who deferred answering my question, is running for Marlatt's seat and leaving behind no representation in the House in the entire Panhandle for perhaps a whole year in true Clinton-type fashion! (Bear in mind, this native Arkie never forgot Bubba's promise to continue as Governor, yet broke it to run for the Oval Office) Let this article be additional reason why Real ID is a horrible law in America when you allow unaccountable bureaucrats in any nation to maintain such a nationwide database as this! India should really consider putting their qualified engineers to work on this instead of allowing excessive H1B Visa transfers here. To clarify, I'm entirely for allowing many of them whom I've met to apply for and be granted citizenship here as they have skills and a social mindset that our schools simply aren't emphasizing enough and are a value to society. The BASICS, such as advanced mathematics which are being taught to Indians must come first! Not the Bread and Circuses mentality inherent on too many American campuses. An earned college degree took sacrifice and should be undertaken seriously. Bitcoin and other crypto discussions in a Face to Face interview with John McAfee on YouTube. Pop some corn and spend 45 minutes getting the latest skinny. Want a giggle or two? After reviewing this short video on twitter. I see this lazy cat saying one short phrase "Mi gordo!" or "I'm fat!" but it reminded me of the Japanese story of the rat snake & hamster who became buddies years ago! In terms of reality, this is a poster we should see in every city! Finally, words of advice from Twitter's Chaz Cryptoson (@thechaz) "Living a boring life? Get a job in the cryptocurrency industry. Never sleep again." in which I reply here on this humble Blog; "So true!!" There's some really exciting stuff yet to happen. We're only getting out of the Holidays and I expect some significant volatility to resume with Bitcoin and the alts, both upward and downwards. If you've been watching the trends, the FUD being given has less effect than in the past. I predict this trend to continue as more and more money flows into this massive wealth transfer. I'm also excited that precious metals are also beginning to perk up a few notches, more so in gold than silver, but again I maintain both metals in physical form will take on new life and meaning. Capitulation has hopefully ended in this sector with a floor to build up new value. My hands were strong, so SCREW those shorts!

Gracias & Alles Liebe,

Mark

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1-7-18
Greetings, y'all!,

 Using Electrum Wallet on Bitcoin? Tavis Ormandy tweeted "The bitcoin wallet Electrum allows any website to steal your bitcoins. I was gonna report it...but there was already an open issue from last year. I pointed out this is kinda critical, and they made a new release within a few hours. Update to 3.0.4 if you use it." A later update on Reddit also notes the vulnerability.
 According to CoinTelegraph, the NYSE has applied for permission to establish Bitcoin ETF's on their ARCA exchange. So watch the price and see how that affects the alts as well. Joel Valenzuela gives a decent opinion article on what is true crypto. It's fairly short and maybe worth the read for many of you.

 How are crypto prices doing? Bitcoin is taking a tumble into the high 15k range after cracking 17k earlier. If it goes below 15.5k, it won't surprise me and I won't bat an eyelash. Litecoin? Sympathetic to it's Big Brother, it's down to $270 and change. Bitcoin Cash has hardly budged, sitting at 2,567 USD and change. Bitcoin Gold lost some ground, down over 6% at just over $230. Bitcoin Diamond futures are barely over $27 today. Ethereum is tall in the saddle, up 8% at $1,102. Other alts I track include Ripple, up a fraction at 2.74 while Qtum loses 17% to price at 60.76. Tron takes a mild haircut at 15.4 cents at midday. Zcash breaks into the top 10 with a 15% gain and sporting $766 a coin. Not shabby! Binancecoin is just the opposite, down 15% today at 19.20 USD. With these, there's give-and-take!

 In oddities - A video shows each of us a real-world use for fiat coinage!This chart might be worthy of printing or framing, although I've requested one for the upcoming shower of ICO tokens. The Digital Food Chain (in BTC terms)

 On my Pic of the Week, I noted to regular visitors of a computer glitch I am experiencing that causes crashes at strange times and has prevented me from uploading new pics there. I'll keep trying and may luck out over the next day or two. This is exactly what's going on here! Be patient if you visit that portion of my website as sometimes my main computer works, but for the most part this Microsoft update is causing me continued headaches, especially if it crashes and I have to spend up to 15 minutes going through an extended restart. I'll update you as time goes.

 To conclude, a parting thought from Dan Rather of CBS fame to President Trump; "Dear Mr. President, A good rule of thumb is that when you've got it, you don't have to say it. People know. That holds true for wealth, compassion, faith, and yes, being a 'very stable genius.'" Sincerely, Dan

Gracias & Alles Liebe,

Mark

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1-6-18
Greetings, y'all!,

 A Happy Belated Birthday to Bitcoin! It turned nine, Wednesday!! If you go to Reddit, you can read about this iconic magazine cover. Over and over and over again, SGTReport fame has referred to The Economist of 30 years ago. Does it have a Bitcoin connection? Many believe so. One thing I believe will happen this year are the Big Fish coming into cryptocurrencies. It won't be limited to Bitcoin for that matter. Certain ICO's (Initial Coin Offerings) have tokens which will moonshoot due to the problems they fix. One youtube video from Crypto Fiend I viewed has a critical opinion that Ethereum, although a decent investment, is too sluggish to handle the huge volume of transactions in a timely manner. It was refreshing to hear something I see as problematic as I saw this with the cryptokitties and other issues including the bugs that Ethereum continues to struggle with. Competition is indeed very stiff and those developing the best blockchains to handle their tokens for specific problems, especially if the smart contracts to be made have a smart interface to enable a user to create them with safety, should stand out to truly rule the roost going forth! This is how I bet some of my holdings before year-end where I don't have a tax liability. If any of you took the opportunity to risk for reward, I truly hope you the best as there are no guarantees, but the possibilities are absolutely worth it to me and I'll see how it fares out as 2018 marches on.

 Litecoin? Charlie Lee knows way more than Bryanttt (@bryantdbc on Twitter) with his reply to the latter's argument of having 'locked up for 6 years but sold the 1st year it took off' and Charlie simply stated "We haven't taken off yet." At that time, LTC was around $230-$250 and has gained decently since to over $300! I'm in very strong agreement with Mr. Lee as Lightning Network is on the verge of breaking through first with LTC, where it's miners aren't being anywhere as snotty and greedy with faster transaction times to boot! Bix Weir of Road To RootA fame is truly hammering that message with extreme LTC bullishness. Personally, I doubt we'll see north of 20k by year's end on LTC, but this is Bitcoin's little brother and it's pretty damn special with nearly all the positive aspects of Bitcoin, so it's not out of the question for Bix's prediction to be spot-on. I traded for some LTC because I believe Charlie made the right decision and he knows way more than he's been letting on. Bix sees that too. So what should I do with the remainder of my BTC? Real Estate is the one remaining category I can invest without having to pay in capital gains, so that's on my radar.

 An update for Americans regarding "like kind transfers" such as BTC/LTC. There's still much debate going on which side the IRS will give taxpayers regarding those before New Years Day. Some swear emphatically that "technically" these transactions are taxable, despite cryptocurrencies not having a currency status by definition. A few of the sharper minds believe this ambiguity was answered back in 2014 and the only way to qualify is to have your CPA work up a Form 8824 with all transactions being requested for a Section 1031 exemption, which many are likely to consider since guidance is indeed that vague and you may not have a case for exemption if you failed to ask for it in the first place! Therefore, all Americans in this position should ask your tax professional now (as I have) to seek guidance going forth. Considering the intentions or ignorance (possibly BOTH) from Congress in passing this, it will be a compliance nightmare for both the Agency and Taxpayers alike, especially for any cryptotraders in 2018. There are many Millennials who believe they shouldn't have to pay any taxes regarding the new law signed before Christmas, and they likely have a rude awakening if having traded using Bitcoin and enforcement becomes a significant priority, due to specific tracking software having been procured by the IRS. Let me ask you; "Do you want to make a difference, going forward?" First, get knowledgeable with the law! Secondly, get knowledgeable with any proposed legislation that Congress may well address. Thirdly, get on the phone 202-225-3121 and voice your concerns with your Congre$$ Critter(s) as they purport to serve YOU! It's extremely helpful to be 1) knowing of what law or bill number(s)/title(s) which concern you, and 2) respectful to the aide on the other end of the phone. This doesn't mean you can't vent a bit, but keep any raw language minimal and only if truly warranted to get across a point. You'd be surprised how few calls a Congressman or Senator may receive on certain bills. Your input may well be THE difference on how they vote it!

 This time around, it's nice to see Bitcoin on a price rise, although I'm watching a reverse pennant forming. There may be a retest of the 16k neckline to come, but I see that as the new support for now. Litecoin was on a tear last night! They're steady around $300 USD. Ethereum is steady around $1,000. Bitcoin Ca$h? Up 6% to $2,559 and change. Bitcoin Gold is up 3% to near $232. Bitcoin Diamond futures is down a fraction to barely over $23. Tron (TRX) is volatile, down 26% to 16.6 cents, but I'm keeping an eye on this token, dealing with smart contracts in blockchain. There's plenty of competition to come, but the right blockchain solutions and their tokenholders will become richer than creme! Siacoin is up over 50%, trading at over a dime. What is Sia? One website notes; "It splits apart, encrypts, and distributes your files across a decentralized network. Since you hold the keys, you own your data. No outside company can access or control your files, unlike traditional cloud storage providers. Sia stores tiny pieces of your files on dozens of nodes across the globe. This eliminates any single point of failure and ensures highest possible uptime, on par with other cloud storage providers. Using the Sia blockchain, Sia creates a decentralized storage marketplace in which hosts compete for your business – this leads to the lowest possible prices, on average 1/10th the cost of current cloud storage providers. Renters pay using Siacoin, which can also be mined and traded. Sia is open source." which makes for a powerful case for me to consider and like this one! StellarLumens (XLM) remains in the top 10 with another nice gain of 10.8% to 72.8 cents. New in the top 10 is BinanceCoin (BNB) with an over 40% 24-hour gain at $21.32 .. Want to pop some corn and learn a bit? Trace Mayer talks Bitcoin. Definitely worth some time.

 Want to laugh out loud? Go back to school and relive those memories! This is one of the better ones I've seen! Have an overly-curious feline? This is what happens when a curious feline messes with your stuff! There's a way to catch them, you know! Some final food-for-thought into this Sunny Saturday in the bone-dry Panhandle of Oklahoma, I totall understand and respect why the quality-minded, 70's Swedish band Abba never reunited on the Big Stage: “To wish for bands to reunite is like wishing your divorced parents get back together: You'll be happy, but they'll be having a really bad time.” - Courtney Barnett

Gracias & Alles Liebe,

Mark

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1-1-18
 2018 has arrived and she's lookin' not too happy! 2017 didn't go out like a lamb for that matter. Mariah Carey wanted her hot tea! So many will now refer to her as Hot Tea Mariah, but tea isn't bad at all - I have my Brit friends and enjoy a "spot" of it too. The DPRK (North Korea) dictator says he has a red button on his desk, but he's not the only one. World War III could well take place this year when Trump replied "We'll see, we'll see." when asked by a reporter regarding Kim's comments. It was a crazy year in so many ways with a lot more on the plate to be digested and black swans flying all over the place, especially regarding crypto! Whale Panda on Twitter @WhalePanda gives the Class some additional insight to the SHITTY job that many miners on Bitcoin continue doing! Such waste and carelessness. Meanwhile, we are the "American Indian" who shed a tear over that apathy, such as Iron Eyes Cody did with his iconic performance in the Don't Pollute public service announcements back in the early 70's, which really made one think and was later the catalyst to start up the annual Great American Cleanup during the mid-80's. After all, he traveled to Heber Springs, AR and nearby Greers Ferry Lake where it got it's start. An event not to be easily forgotten. UPDATE: Jameson Lopp @lopp on Twitter clarified the posting; "An unknown miner just learned an expensive lesson by destroying the entire 12.5 BTC coinbase reward for block 501,726!" which at the price of $12,500 USD times 12.5 equaled over $156k USD. That was about as intelligent as Oklahoma voting in the "Real ID" Act or wasting taxpayer money on the card swipers that OHP was to use in stealing people's funds, obfuscating details to the creditors, no less! At least the Governor suspended the program, lest my state suffered severe consequences regarding tourism. Crypto Randy Marsh on Twitter @nondualnelly opined smartly "They did warn us about institutional money wanting cheap bitcoin, didn't they?" and I would strongly agree, especially Bank$ters whom wish to hammer it down with the futures. I suspect the dip to progress through to 11k then rebound. Tis the HOLIDAY season, y'all. Although Bitcoin is truly international, there are some seasonal influences keeping it from rebounding as fast as some of you fellow HODLers would like. I don't care! Later on, Jameson Lopp on Twitter was questioned about Lightning Network on Bitcoin; Q: When will the Lightning Network be rolled out? His answer? "The rollout has already begun. This is an iterative distributed learning process; it's unlikely there will be a single point in time at which we say LN is 'deployed' because it will grow organically. Software is never finished." Which although I agree, it would be a good thing to receive updates from Devs as I wouldn't want my BTC locked up due to a bug, much like the Ethereum situation which affected it's price! Personally, I'm a bit leery of Ripple and suspect they've made their peak at around $2.42 recently with a correction in the cards, perhaps in sympathy with the Other Guys even if the timing doesn't match. The time to have made any coin-to-coin trades in America tax-free has wrapped up, with traders deeply pissed at the amount of detail the new law will require to comply. I suspect it will come back to haunt Congress who passed that sack of shit, except of course if you use your coins to buy Real Estate and that a revisit of the law will be made well before the next elections, otherwise we know Trump would've likely vetoed it! I've considered using my remaining coins to buy certain real estate, although I don't believe that's where my Big Money may come from. That story in a future Blog, y'all.

 Prices on cryptos for the first day? Bitcoin remains in a trading range between 12.5k USD and 15k USD. Australian banks are being blamed for some of this. Of course they can't allow their people to make up their own minds regarding how their value is banked as that would give them less control. Get it? There's plenty of angry people south of the equator with Summer having started. We'll see how this turns out as the Holidays wrap up with people getting back to tasks at hand. Litecoin? The jury is still out regarding Charlie Lee's decision to bow out of Litecoin, but I tend to side with him. There's a LOT of news to come about Litecoin, enough that I'm bullish to HODL some now. After all, it came off a really good peak, but so did Bitcoin. Both are almost lock-step with each other, but I've stated this won't remain the case much longer. LTC trades around $222 today and steady. Ethereum? 670 to 770 over the past week, it's been a rollercoaster. Today, trading at $748 with a technical pennant closing to a point. Breakout? We'll see soon! Ripple was quite the darling at 2.41 USD on 12/30 but has retraced slowly to shy of $2 USD. As already mentioned, I'm not particularly fond of it, yet it's hot enough for me to track here. Bitcoin Cash may be showing a reverse cup-and-handle pattern, the cup not yet complete. At 2,315 and change, it's going o.k. into the New Year, although the jury is still out. Bitcoin Gold's cup pattern appears a bit more complete and slowly upswinging at $229 and change. Bitcoin Diamond (Futures) is down over 12% to just shy of $24. Verge (XVG) has been volatile! It was .24 yesterday and has shed 25% so far today at 16.2 cents. StellarLumens or the Lumens token XLM is Red Hot and I'm tracking it now. It's doubled since 12/29 at 45 cents, gaining 25% over the past 24 hours. If their technology is presently proving itself, this may not be one to easily ignore!

 Of course there's odd news and funnies; "january 22" on Twitter @nmariesinclair tweeted this NSFW animoji (it's a cartoon animation put to the sender's voice) as it came out hilarious with well over six million views so far. Finally, a wave of the gray Stetson to 2017; you were awesome! Thom C., Lazy L&B, John P. & Monna, The National Bighorn Sheep Center in Dubois, WY, Mark "Sparky" Herring of QMail 4 (.QWK) fame, C.D. visiting his mother & sister in Texas now, Bill Patrick, Chris Tuttle, Sandra, my family in Arkansas, Patrick and Becky down in the Quapaw and the entire Live Warehouse staff helped me during this time which was both trying and enjoyable. This Blog is brought to you by Bitcoin, Litecoin, and another ICO token I won't mention yet that may well fund my retirement. I have some goals I hope to accomplish this year and hope it helps others as well. I will be blunt that I'm not all about winning personality contests as that doesn't come easily to me. Furthermore, I'm not the greatest social butterfly, despite the trends I understand. The quality of trends is where I focus and that's beyond what many "normal" folks can stomach, therefore I'm different in that regard and will remain so! The faster most of my critics or those not in my inner orbit understand this, the easier I'll be able to communicate and associate with.

Gracias & Alles Liebe!,

Mark