Re: "And then there’s the Digital Yuan"
"It's a distributed ledger that doesn't depend on a single potentially untrustworthy authority. Somewhere in the wide world there should be some useful applications for that sort of thing."
"Distributed" != "trustworthy" though. Those are completely different goals.
First of all, just because something is distributed doesn't mean it's not under the control of a single authority. It only means it's (somewhat) public, and that the decision on what is the truthful content in the case of a split is left to a particularly opaque system of quorum.
And then, obviously, just because it's distributed doesn't mean the content is true or even reliable. And once crap has started seeping in, it just makes it more difficult to get rid of it, since a lot of people are now going to point to that crap as a some sort of source of authority.
People who defend blockchains always seem to be incapable to consider that its content can be wrong, too.