Patrick Byrne, the former chief executive of Overstock.com who sent shockwaves through the blockchain community not too long ago when he resigned from his post, has decided to sell all his company shares – worth roughly $90 million before taxes – and commit all his money to crypto and precious metals.
Byrne Is Getting Ready for a Financial Breakdown
Byrne comments that he’s ready to go to war with the “deep state” and its “pet” the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
In 2014, Byrne was labeled bitcoin’s “messiah” by Wired magazine. His resignation from Overstock came about in August when it was revealed he had been involved in the investigation of accused Russian spy Maria Butina.
In a recent blog post, Byrne comments about his situation and writes:
After paying tens of millions in taxes… the rest will be in investments that are counter-cyclical to the economy: gold, silver and two flavors of crypto.
The rest of the blog is strange, to say the least, and does feel like the words of someone preparing for the battle of their lives. It’s unclear what Byrne is trying to get across and he writes:
The gold and silver are stored outside of the United States, in Switzerland, and within two weeks, will be scattered in other locations that are even more outside of the reach of the deep state, but are places that are safe for me… The crypto is stored in the place where all crypto is stored: in mathematical mist, behind long keys held only in the memory of someone who is quite good at storing such things in memory (with paper backups in the hands of a priest I met 35 years ago who never sets foot in the west).
What is he talking about? Sure, Byrne has commented in the past that a massive global apocalypse is coming, but this all sounds a little far-fetched. Storing one’s private keys with a priest? Scattering money everywhere in areas only you can find? This sounds like something out of a modern-day Indiana Jones flick. Either that or a major scavenger hunt of some kind…
Coming Up Short on Blockchain
At press time, it’s unclear which two “flavors” of cryptocurrency he’s talking about, though to be fair, one will likely be bitcoin. Byrne has constantly praised the asset, while Overstock.com was one of the first major retailers to accept BTC as a means of payment during a time when cryptocurrency was mostly used for speculation and growing one’s wealth.
However, Byrne’s Medici Ventures has consistently sought to place money in new blockchain ventures. The problem is that very few of these ventures have initiated returns to Byrne or his team, and the company was $60 million in the hole by the end of 2018.