Skip to content
Swan logo
Log InGet Started

The Political Economy of Decentralization

Please enjoy the following reading list championing localism and decentralization in systems of human cooperation — to which I believe Bitcoin provides a natural addition.

Allen Farrington

Created by Allen Farrington


Total time

18 hours 30 minutes
0/7 completed

It goes without saying that Bitcoin has several entirely novel technical characteristics, some of which represent brilliant academic breakthroughs. However, I have always been wary of associating Bitcoin too strongly with advances in information technology, or indeed with “newness” at all.

This is in part because these very same advances are argubaly insufficient yet necessary drivers of an increasingly politically and economically centralized world. They have contributed to many problems Bitcoin, and Bitcoiners, aspire to fix: the erosion of privacy, financial repression, monolithic power over dissemination of information, etc.

Bitcoin provides a means to (re)decentralize, and I think it fits nicely and naturally in a canon of academic philosophy, politics, and economics analyzing this ideal. But, crucially, this analysis is without reference to Bitcoin itself, or, in most cases, even the internet or software design. It is not techno-utopinaism, but humanism. It is not new.

The Use of Knowledge in Society
F.A. Hayek on
30 minutes
Astonishingly concise and powerful explanation of the power of the market to embed distributed information in prices. Possibly the seminal analysis of the mechanics of voluntary and decentralized consensus formation.
Read on
The Use of Knowledge in Society

Share this Rabbit Hole

Allen Farrington

Allen Farrington


Allen is a professional investor with an interest in Bitcoin’s intersection with history, politics, and economics. His book, Bitcoin Is Venice, co-authored with Sacha Meyers, is due for publication in early 2022. He is also a board observer at Blockstream.

Read Allen’s work at

Dive Deeper

You might want to dive down one of these Rabbit Holes next.

See all the Rabbit Holes

The Political Economy of Decentralization

A Rabbit Hole by Allen Farrington

Own your future. Get started with Swan today.

Swan logo


  • Swan IRA
  • Swan Private
  • Swan Vault
  • Swan Business
  • Swan Advisor
  • Bitcoin Benefit Plan
  • Swan API

Swan Bitcoin does not provide any investment, financial, tax, legal or other professional advice. We recommend that you consult with financial and tax advisors to understand the risks and consequences of buying, selling and holding Bitcoin.

© Swan Bitcoin 2024