The MAGA-themed “Let’s Go Brandon” Ethereum cryptocurrency has fallen on tough times.
So much so that the value of all 330 trillion coins totals just a few thousand dollars combined, according to the trading sites CoinMarketCap and Crypto, a far cry from the days of pro-Trump investors believing they could strike it rich in the ever-complex world of crypto.
That represents a 99.5 percent decline over the last 30 days, leaving a singular LGB coin effectively worthless.
At the end of last year, the coin, which carries the saying “Let’s Go, Brandon,” spiked in value after it received a boost from D-list TrumpWorld acolytes and found itself being promoted on the hood of NASCAR driver Brandon Brown’s race car.
A month prior, the slogan had found its legs when Brown gave a post-victory interview with NBC reporter Kelli Stavast. The crowd could be heard loudly chanting “F*ck Joe Biden,” but the sports reporter mistook the crowd’s words for “Let’s Go Brandon.”
From that point forward, it became a pro-Trump rallying cry. From the likes of Florida Republican Governor Ron Desantis, who began using the term “Brandon administration,” to Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) touting the secretly crude anti-Biden phrase, Trumpworld quickly got hooked on saying it in public.
A group of enterprising crypto enthusiasts seized on the viral moment by creating their own cryptocurrency and attempting to sponsor the driver’s racing team.
Those dreams vaporized in January, when NASCAR abruptly intervened, declaring that it would not allow the sponsorship deal to go through, despite prior approval from a company employee.
The coin’s demise followed in short order, even as LGB signed a “two-year, eight-figure” sponsorship agreement with the driver.
To some observers, the collapse was a foregone conclusion. “They tried to monetize on a viral outbreak. Did it surprise me when something without value shot up and immediately shot down upon release? No,” said David Silver, an attorney who has represented aggrieved crypto investors since 2014.
And though the crypto markets are riddled with scams, according to Tim Swanson—who blogs about crypto and works as head of market intelligence at the blockchain company Clearmatics—the danger to investors is always higher with niche “meme coins.”
Larger coins have higher trading volumes, so when a company insider sells a huge amount of their stake, it generally won’t significantly dilute prices for everyone else, he said. With meme coins, however, average investors are at the mercy of insiders “who know exactly when they’re going to sell.” Once they do, he added, the coin’s value effectively “drops to zero.”
At the LGB coin’s peak in early January 2022, the coin had a liquidity pool worth north of $6.5 million. (One not familiar with crypto might think of a liquidity “pool” as just that, a large pool of liquid cash flow that the exchange can use if investors want out of their positions, even if there isn’t a buyer on the other side of the table.) That pot of money has since dried up, leaving a liquidity pool of less than $10,000.
On Twitter, the organizing group behind LGB pledged to “airdrop” investors a new and improved coin, ostensibly swapping out something worthless for something with an artificially designated value.
David Silver, the crypto lawyer, was skeptical. “The free market has already said this is a coin that has no value,” he said. “Simply rebranding and trying again is merely trying to take a second shot at convincing someone to give you value where no value exists.”
Some apparent investors seem skeptical as well. One commenter complained in the comment section of LGB’s Twitter page in January that their $15,000 investment had plummeted to just “a couple [of] hundred dollars.” Another expressed alarm that their 73 million coins were worth a measly $1.66 altogether.
As of several weeks ago, the team behind LGB was still urging their acolytes to remain patient and loyal. Tweeting from their stated location—“Merica”—they offered up a “Don’t Panic!” meme accompanied by some dubious counsel: “Sometimes you just need to have faith and [hold on for dear life].”