By Todd Tiahrt. April 17, 2023. (Real Clear Markets).
When federal regulators seriously overreach, the other two branches of government have the duty to hold them in check. That’s the way the Founding Fathers intended our system to work.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is the latest regulator that has gone way past the mark by waging a war on cryptocurrency technology. The Agency has filed an avalanche of enforcement actions and warnings against companies big and small in the crypto space, claiming they are selling securities that should have been registered like stock offerings. It’s time that Congress fulfil their constitutional duty and rein in the SEC.
The heart of the issue revolves around claims by SEC Chairman Gary Gensler that many crypto companies are non-compliant and in violation of federal securities laws. He believes they should “come forward and register” their tokens, whether they issued them or not, and asserts that all sales involving these tokens are securities transactions, even between parties completely unrelated to the companies being targeted. The reality is quite different.
Evidence has come out in several cases that show the SEC’s legal arguments are ridiculous. Crypto tokens that have a utility are not like stocks and don’t give their users any voting rights in a company, so they are not securities and Gensler has no right to regulate them. Furthermore, the SEC can’t punish secondary market holders of cryptocurrencies for the actions of an unrelated company like it is trying to do in case after case.