They can do that because they are the US govt.

What would be the likely consequences of the ban?

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    Governments ban a lot of things. They're not very good at enforcing their bans. – Colin Dean Apr 8 '13 at 19:48
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    What is more likely to happen is the exchanges will start getting taxed. – placeybordeaux Apr 9 '13 at 2:00

Same as the ban on drugs:

  1. People would continue to use them, they'll just do it in secret.
  2. The value will rise.
  3. The government will spend lots of your taxes to try to fight it and fail.
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    Why do you say the value will rise? Shouldn't it fall, because it will be impossible to use them? You can still use drugs... – Mella Apr 8 '13 at 19:02
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    The illegality of drugs makes them harder to buy but the users aren't less wanting to use them. So the supply is decreased while the demand remains: Value goes up. – Eyal Apr 8 '13 at 19:37
  • 1) The supply of bitcoins would stay the same, because difficulty would probably go down. 2) The drug supply is constantly being consumed by drug users. On the other hand, if I use a bitcoin, it's not consumed. – Nick ODell Apr 8 '13 at 19:51
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    Doing it in secret... Wouldn't really be an option for shops – stommestack Jun 2 '13 at 11:04

Or the similar example with drugs but with another consequences in Saudi

  1. The price will dramatically go down.
  2. Only few people would be able to afford the risk of doing any kind of transactions with them

I can not say that they banned it, because they were illegal all the time. But because the price for breaking the rule is so high (Death) almost no one tries to possess or sell them. Moreover, if anyone would find out that you have them, they would tell about you and this will be the end for you. I can not say that in this case the government is spending a lot of money, their try is very efficient and for sure they are far away from failing.

If someone think that this is not the case - try to go there and try to buy some :-). Before this - just send me your bitcoins, I will for sure give them back if you will come back. This was a joke - I am not promoting drug users here.

In the end - all depends on regulations and how will it be enforced.

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    The price of coke in Saudi is one of the highest: havocscope.com/black-market-prices/cocaine-prices – Eyal Apr 8 '13 at 20:54
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    Cool link, but better try to sell one there or even to buy. What I am trying to say in the answer, that no one knows what will happen. The question by itself is actually non-constructive. – Salvador Dali Apr 8 '13 at 21:01

The USA is only one country of many. Others will continue to use bitcoins.

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    @Mella Ok, you HAVE to be trolling. – Nick ODell Apr 8 '13 at 20:40
  • For sure, check his list of questions :-) – Salvador Dali Apr 8 '13 at 21:01
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    I'm not a troll. I think it's obvious for everyone that US govt. actions affect the entire world. Other governments action not so much – Mella Apr 8 '13 at 21:32

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