All right, folks, let's talk about crypto lobbying. You may have heard of it before - it's when individuals or organizations try to influence policymakers to pass laws or regulations that benefit their interests. But let's be real here folks: it's about as popular as a wet fart at a dry wedding.
The Controversial History of Lobbying
Lobbying has been around for centuries, and it's no secret that it's a controversial practice. The word "lobbying" comes from the fact that people used to wait in the lobbies of legislative buildings to speak to their elected officials.
But lobbying really took off in the 19th century with the rise of trade associations and other groups that wanted to get their voice heard. And as the years went by, lobbying only got more intense.
Why Lobbying Is So Controversial
So, why is lobbying so controversial? For one thing, there's a lot of money involved. Wealthy individuals and organizations can easily hire high-priced lobbyists to push their agendas. And when they do, it can feel like they're undermining the democratic process. It's no wonder that so many people view lobbying as a corrupt practice.
But Here's the Thing: Lobbying has become Essential to Democracy
Lobbying is a part of democracy as scales on a wet fish.
Mostly, it allows regular folks and organizations to speak up and fight for their interests. It helps make sure that the government is accountable to the people and reflects the diversity of opinions in society. In a way, lobbying is a vital part of the democratic process, at least that's what most of us think anyway.
The Crypto Industry And Lobbying
And that brings us to the crypto industry. I was referred to an article from The Money Mongers that managed to pull up some interesting stats in regard to crypto lobbying that I hadn't taken notice of before.
They state that in 2022 alone, crypto companies spent a whopping $25.57 billion on lobbying activities.
And it's not hard to see why. The crypto industry is still relatively new, and regulations are often slow to catch up as we've seen lately in the Ripple vs SEC.
By lobbying policymakers, these companies hope to create more favorable regulations for the crypto industry. That, in turn, will help the industry grow and thrive. Of course with any industry, there are always going to be bad actors who lobby for their own personal benefit.
Look no further than Sam Bankman-Fried who donated more than $40 million to political parties, and who is now requesting these politicians give him back some $90 million which he donated (smh).
The Top Crypto Lobbying Spenders
So, who are the top spenders when it comes to crypto lobbying? Well, Coinbase takes the cake with $3.39 million spent in 2022 alone.
The Blockchain Association and Robinhood followed closely behind with spending of $1.9 million and $1.84 million, respectively. It's clear that these companies are putting a lot of money and effort into lobbying.
So, what does the future of lobbying look like for the crypto industry? As an investor, I see it as a double-edged sword.
On the one hand, lobbying can create more favorable regulations for the industry, which will lead to growth and profits.
On the other hand, the more money that's involved in lobbying, the more it can be viewed as a corrupt practice. And that, in turn, can create a negative perception of the crypto industry as a whole.
In the end, I believe that the crypto industry needs to find a balance when it comes to lobbying. Companies should continue to push for favorable regulations, but they need to do so in a way that's transparent and honest. It's become a key part of the democratic process. But it's up to us to ensure that it's done in a fair, ethical, and beneficial way to everyone involved.
Interesting Lobbying Facts
Lobbying in the USA is a whole lot more complex than I thought. There are a few stats about lobbying that might surprise you as they did me.
Huge Amounts Of money are spent on lobbying
Well, let me tell you, friend, the amount of money being spent on lobbying in the USA is truly mind-boggling. According to recent reports, in 2022, the total amount of money spent on lobbying between January and September reached a staggering 3.06 billion U.S. dollars. And while that might sound like a lot - and it is - it's actually a bit of a decrease compared to the previous year.
In 2021, the total lobbying spending between January and December amounted to a whopping 3.73 billion U.S. dollars. That's a lot of money being thrown around in the halls of power, let me tell you.
In 2020, lobbying expenditures reached a total of $3.5 billion.
In 2019, lobbying expenditures totaled $3.47 billion - and that was just in the first three quarters of the year!
Lobbying Firms Outnumber Members of Congress
That's right, folks - there are more lobbyists in Washington D.C. than there are members of Congress. According to Statista, there were approximately 12,098 registered lobbyists in 2022, compared to the 541 members of Congress. That means that each member of Congress has to deal with around 20 plus lobbyists vying for their attention and trying to sway their vote.
The Revolving Door Is Real
Another thing to keep in mind is the so-called "revolving door" between the government and lobbying firms. Many lobbyists are former government officials, and many government officials end up working for lobbying firms after leaving public service. This revolving door can create conflicts of interest and lead to a perception of corruption. In fact, a 2018 poll found that 60% of Americans believe that lobbyists bribe politicians.
Lobbying Is Protected By The First Amendment
It's true - lobbying is protected by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution. The right to petition the government is considered a fundamental right and lobbying is seen as a form of petitioning.
That means that attempts to restrict or regulate lobbying are often met with legal challenges based on the First Amendment.
Love it or hate it, lobbying is an integral part of the political process in the United States, and it's not likely to go away anytime soon.
And since the U.S. economy sways the entire economic markets, when it comes to crypto regulation and lobbying it does have a great deal of influence.
As more crypto companies realize the benefits of lobbying, you can bet the number of petitions are going to increase exponentially as we progress further into this new and exciting asset class.
Matt is the founder of TechMalak. When he's not buried face-deep in the crypto charts you can find him tinkering with the latest tech gadgets and A. I tools. He's a crypto investor and entrepreneur. He uses a mixture of A.I and human thought and input into all his articles on TechMalak, further merging man with machine.