This is in part a continuation of a previous strain of thought.
I see several proof of work alternatives suggested in these circles, like proof of stake and proof of burn. But the people with the most mining power or the most stake aren't necessarily the most honest. Who I would intuitively think is the most honest, or at least the least likely to 'defect' in the prisoners dilemma that any currency is, is the most decentralized stakeholders, i.e. the mass of users who have few Monero as a method of payment without being professionals with data centers. So would it be possible to have a consensus algorithm that accepts the chain that is preferred by the most users who have small stakes in the currency? Maybe somehow in combination with their long-term spending of coins. If you spend coins in small amounts going a few years back, you are less likely to be a 51% attacker than someone with millions but no spending habit. A "Proof of spending" algorithm of sorts. I suppose it would not be possible to distinguish these real decentralized actors from fake ones created with the help of a VPN? What are your thoughts regarding the viability of these suggestions?