I'm reading a book and came across "... they only discovered too late; one can macroBS longer than microBS,. ."

Couldn't understand the phrase.

  • 1
    What was the book and context? Apr 29, 2020 at 1:45
  • What does "macro" mean? What does "micro" mean? What does "BS" mean?
    – Hot Licks
    Apr 29, 2020 at 1:47
  • @JasonBassford Forward of the book: The Bitcoin Standard.
    – Ricky
    Apr 29, 2020 at 1:50
  • 1
    Presumably, those terms are explained in the book. It's a good guess that, in this context, BS stands for Bitcoin Standard. Apr 29, 2020 at 2:02
  • 1
    It should be noted that the author may, in some instances, pun the two meanings of "BS". Hard to tell without knowing a lot more context.
    – Hot Licks
    Apr 29, 2020 at 12:31

2 Answers 2


one can macroBS longer than microBS,. ." the respective verbs are to microbullshit and to macrobullshit


bullshit v. transitive and intransitive, to talk nonsense (to); = bull v.3; also, to bluff one's way through (something) by talking nonsense.

1969 P. Roth Portnoy's Complaint 105 Please, let us not bullshit one another about ‘love’ and its duration.

"micro-" prefix

1.a. Forming terms in which micro- indicates small (often microscopic) or relatively small size, frequently in contrast with related terms beginning with macro- or mega-.

Thus "on a small scale, in a detailed manner, precisely. Hence, Macro- on a large scale, in general, in broad terms


to macrobullshit = to talk nonsense (to); = bull v.3; also, to bluff one's way through (something) in general or broad terms, or with reference to large scale effects.

to microbullshit = to talk nonsense (to); = bull v.3; also, to bluff one's way through (something) addressing the smaller aspects, thus, in a detailed way.


While the book is about the Bitcoin Standard the phrase tells the tail of the details beneath the marketing.

The realization that they come to is that BS refers to Bovus Excretus or Bull Sh*t. The idiom of BS-ing is to talk, speak at length and basically bloviate all with the end value of said excrement, that is, none at all.

I understand the meanings of these macroBS and microBS in the Bitcoin world. But here the delineation between macroBS and microBS is between talking in large, grand terms devoid of detail vs. talking in micro, smaller terms where the lack of detail is eventually, if only too late, apparent.

"And dull surprise when payment due exceeds accounts received."

  • 1
    Tells the tail?
    – Xanne
    Apr 29, 2020 at 9:52
  • I don’t think this answer reflects the intent of the intro to the book. The intro is by Nassim Taleb, who wrote the book about the black swan theory; he is favorable to the bitcoin concept.
    – Xanne
    Apr 29, 2020 at 10:00
  • 1
    In my judgement there is a lot of BS associated with Bitcoin.
    – Hot Licks
    Apr 29, 2020 at 12:34
  • Even though Mr. Taleb believes in the concept he is telling us that he ran out of room in his discussions. I am sure he had better luck some time later.
    – Elliot
    Apr 30, 2020 at 1:37
  • I'm sorry, in contrast BTC the BS has actually real value as fertilizer at least. @HotLicks, suppose it is very much implied that the BS is something one has to shovel through to get to the real value of distributed trusts.
    – vectory
    Dec 6, 2020 at 11:03

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