A Critical Review: Fiat Ruins Everything by Jimmy Song Is Mistitled

Ugly Old Goat
12 min readFeb 24, 2024
https://medium.com/r/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FFiat-Ruins-Everything-Financial-Bitcoin%2Fdp%2FB0CFDCGZBK

I have been pretty much out of touch with Bitcoin and the world for the past year rethinking my thinking. And reflecting on reflections. And deeply in prayer concerning my depravity and where genuine hope lies.

It was at Tone Vays unconfiscatable Conference 2023 that I crossed paths again with my friend Jimmy Song. I have always admired Jimmy for his public stand as a Christian, his example personally and professionally, and his consistent emphasis on the importance of sound honest money. He has taught me much by his shining example to the point that I stand in awe of his ability to make the difficult subject of Bitcoin easier for the layman to understand.

I did not know he had written a new book and there he was at the signing table. He was the only person who truly understood the pain I caused my wife and shed a genuine tear when I shared that my wife left in August and the following week chose to no longer be the mother of our children due to my infidelities.

On the surface, my lovely wife appears to be some type of villainess. But the truth is she left because of my failure as a man, a husband, and a father. She gave all she could give and could give no more. It was my infidelities, my return to whoremongering that caused the situation and the pain I caused her. My sin and genuine lack of love. Appearances are almost always deceiving.

Jimmy understands what love means as evidenced on page 65 paraphrasing the Apostle Paul, love is patient, kind, unenvious, and humble with footnote 59 referring to I Corinthians 13 but conspicuously missing the phrase, “Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.” (I Cor. 13:6)

The full context reads, “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.” (I Cor. 4–8)

At the risk of appearing narcissistic, I am, we all are we because we are created beings in His image (“I am who I am” as the Lord revealed himself to Moses) yet we are not little gods but naturally depraved creatures.

It is in this frame of mind that the premise Fiat Ruins Everything struck me as wrong. So very, very wrong. I promised to write a review. In this book, my friend Jimmy Song does not delight in evil but misses rejoicing in the truth.

I am the opposite. I have delighted in the evil like any slave to sin in my whoremongering. Only because our Lord chastises those whom he loves with His irresistible grace can write about these things.

And only because all things work for good for those who love the Lord and are called according to His purpose can I have assurance, not from anything I have done or can do in the future, but for, what He did for His people 2,000 years ago.

And the same applies to everything in this life. It is the job and duty of husbands to love their wives as Christ loves His Church.

“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— for we are members of his body. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” Ephesians 5:25–33

Christ washes us in his Word through His Holy Spirit and presents us to the Father without spot or wrinkle or any other blemish.

The Psalms were written by David who committed many vile wicked sins including adultery, lying, deceit, stealing, and murdering an innocent man. But when confronted by the prophet Nathan saying “You are this man!” David fell on his knees before the Lord publicly acknowledging his terrible evil doing. This is why David is known as a man after the Lord’s heart.

Nowhere is this more apparent than in the book of Psalms written primarily by David as he agonized over his corrupt being in his delight in evil, and his pain, yet he could rejoice in truth and give us such great comfort through his Psalms.

Christ washes David's vile sins in His Word and presents David to Himself by His Holy Spirit to the Father without spot or wrinkle or any other blemish.

In the same way the Lord loved David, he commands men as husbands to love their wives. Being a husband is a job the Lord has given to men. It is not an option. We are to lead. And today my lovely wife Eunice is only mirroring my leadership. She gave until she could give no more. It is my job as a man, a husband, and a father to present her without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish in this world.

He commands men as husbands to love their wives as Christ loves His church just as Christ presents David to His Father without a spot or wrinkle or blemish before His Father not for anything David did but for what He did for David 2,000 years ago.

Being a husband is a job the Lord has given exclusively to men. It is not an option. We are to lead. It is a decree. It is commanded by fiat. We are to love and protect His Daughters who he has given us and entrusted us. And because it is by Divine Fiat it is not His Divine Fiat that has ruined everything but our failure to follow His just decrees.

Today my lovely wife Eunice is only mirroring my leadership. She gave until she could give no more. It is my job as a man, a husband, and a father to present Eunice without a spot or wrinkle or any blemish.

It is my failure, not hers. I know the world sees it differently but we must forsake our natural delight in evil and always rejoice in truth. As David did in his turbulent sinful life. Yes, the Holy Spirit tells me what she is doing is wrong! But I do not need to yell at her. Thankfully, the Lord took my voice for eight weeks! Yes, what she is doing is wrong! What she is doing is a terrible sin! And what she doing is hurtful. Just like fiat money! But the price has already been paid on The Cross!

The Holy Spirit tells me I do not need to reprimand her. I do not need to be mean to her. I do not need to defend myself. I do not need to try and shut her down. Her sin has already been paid for. Her sin is not for me to judge. Jesus bought it with His blood. Just as He did for me and David! This is what Christ means that we are to love our wives as he loves us!

But the problem is we can not hear it. The reason is that the body and the natural physical world are overwhelming us. And it is overwhelming us primarily with pain.

Absolum rebelled against David because one of his half-brothers Amon raped his sister Tamar and refused to take her as his wife and David did nothing to rectify the situation. Absolam eventually killed his brother because his father did nothing. For this, David punished Absolum for doing what he should have done as king.

Absolum conquered Jerusalem and publicly took his father’s wives as his own on unwise advice. The rebellion was eventually put down.

As I cry, “Oh Eunice! Oh Eunice!” David cried “ Oh Absolam! Oh Absolam!” after his rebellious son was killed in battle by the hands of Joab and against David’s specific orders that none of his mighty men would carry out but the cursed Joab who did what was best in his sight.

Sanctification means we are no longer slaves to sin. It means we can learn not to delight in evil. What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?” May it never be!

Yet this is what I did. This is who I am. Everything bad said about me is likely true. And I am unable to change it but for an irresistible sovereign grace.

The truth is not that Fiat Ruins Everything, the truth is Sin Ruins Everything. But this title cannot appear on a book cover, only on critical reviews.

The truth is man-made decrees cause tremendous hurt when they are contrary to God’s just decrees given to us in The Ten Commandments.

There are right decrees and wrong decrees. Our Nation was founded on the decree of sound honest money. It is not a fiat decree that only gold and silver shall be legal tender that ruins things. The United States had sound honest money for over a century.

Legal Tender. Another thing that follows from the restricted Biblical role of government about money and banking is the absence of legal tender laws. I wish to make clear what I mean by “legal tender,” since it seems to have at least two different meanings. Of course, if a government is to collect taxes or payments of any sort, it must specify acceptable forms of payment. This is one meaning of “legal tender.” In the early years of the American Republic, this problem was solved by the government publishing a list of monies in which it would accept payment. It did not restrict payment to one form of money but published a broad list of acceptable means of payment. The constitutionality of this form of legal tender was not challenged.

But there is another meaning of the phrase “legal tender”: Usually it means that a creditor is compelled to accept whatever the government has declared to be tender as payment for outstanding debts. Each Federal Reserve Note bears the words, “This note is legal tender for all debts public and private.” Those words mean that a private creditor must accept them in payment for a debt. It makes little difference that the creditor may have a contract calling for payment in something else, for the courts do not, as a rule, order specific performance of contracts. Perhaps at one time they did. But today a creditor is compelled to accept the government paper as payment.

There is no warrant in the Bible for this sort of legal tender. Rather, the clear implication is that the parties to a contract may set the terms of the contract, so long as they are not illegal in themselves, and those terms must be obeyed. The Bible praises the man who makes a promise and keeps it, even though he might be injured by keeping it. It condemns the man who defaults on a deal, or seeks to substitute something of lesser value for that which he promised to deliver. Legal tender laws are an institutionalized form of defaulting on debts.

It is not following righteous decrees that ruin everything. Jimmy commits the fatal mistake of throwing out the baby with the bath water. He is raging against the hurt sin has caused, but wrongly applies it to all fiat. Big government is both the result of and the punishment for sin.

It is not Fiat Delenda est. It is Justus Fiat Restituendus. All fiat should not be destroyed, rather it is righteous fiat that must be restored. As a Christian Jimmy should know our hope does not lie in the Roman example by utterly destroying our enemies.

We are not to delight in evil but rejoice in truth. My brother Jimmy is strong on the first part to the omission of the second. We are opposites in our depravity.

The difference between God’s fiat and man’s fiat is that when God decrees let there be light there was light! Being created in His image man has worked to be able to decree the same! Righteous fiat makes for a righteous world! Fiat does not ruin everything. Abandoning righteous fiat (sin) ruins everything.

We are to be the shining light and example. And I consider Jimmy to be one of the greatest, but this is a critical review and this is where he missed the mark.

That said Jimmy‘s book is a great follow-up in the same spirit as Saifedean Ammous THE FIAT STANDARD which got terrible reviews but I found it to be fascinating and needs to be developed more fully. Jimmy’s book is a step in that direction.

The only inconsistency in The Fiat Standard is that Saif failed to apply the same principle in advocating a fiat 100% in-kind reserve standard, a view Jimmy Song also shares which is not banking but a warehouse operation. There is such a thing as sound commercial banking.

This Biblical view of money and banking is reflected in Dr. Sennholz’s 1986 book, Money and Freedom, in which he advocates the repeal of compulsory tender laws and concludes: Sound money and free banking are not impossible; they are merely illegal. That is why money must be deregulated…. In freedom, the money and banking industry can create sound and honest currencies, just as other free industries can provide efficient and reliable products. (Hans F. Sennholz, Money and Freedom, 83.)

One cringe-worthy area throughout his book is the use of the word rent-seeking which is wrongly presented as something evil. Private property is Bibical. “Thou shalt not steal” and paying and receiving rent for just and honest use of the property is not theft. We are commanded to be good, wise, and honest stewards. It is not the godly decree of private property that ruins things. God’s decree of private property needs to be restored, not destroyed. Here both Saif and Jimmy err. They have abandoned the Christian ethic that we ought to obey God, not men.

Landlords or renters or for that matter homeowners seek special privileges to ruin things in the form of tax abatements and entitlements. All tax abatements and entitlements are theft. It is privilege-seeking that ruins things while taxing labor is stealing from a man’s honest work. The three greatest swindles of all time remain inflation, entitlements, and regulation.

Jimmy picked up on the current jingo rent-seeker when what he is talking about is privilege-seekers. I understand his reasons but using such terminology does not help his cause and only feeds more fuel to socialism by promoting the canard that rent-seeking is inherently evil.

Again our hope as Christians does not lie on the road to Rome and Fiat Delanda est. Our hope lies in Justus Fiat Restituendus. Nor does our hope lie in this world but in the world to come. And to preach otherwise is a lie of reconstructionism. This is the hope and glorification Christians look forward to through Grace alone, Faith alone, Scripture alone, and Christ alone.

Bitcoin is not a panacea for a sinful world. It is a useful yardstick. A useful tool of measurement. But alone Bitcoin fixes nothing. To the degree the world fails to restore sound money, bitcoin will shine. To the degree the world restores sound money bitcoin has little use.

Toward this end Jimmy Song and Saifedena Ammous rage against the evils of man-made decrees that go against godly decrees. Rightfully so! Heeding what they are saying may just help the world restore sound money. There are just godly decrees and it is up to this generation to seek them out in Scripture and restore them.

Justus Fiat Restituendus.

I hope this helps.

UGLY OLD GOAT

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