People actually believe in this scam/hoax/ponzi etc. as it being a way to say to stick it to global governments and in the meantime some masked guy from wherever he's from is probably sticking it to them.
I honestly don't understand what gives bitcoins value and what underlying principles back it. Many complain how the US dollar is no longer backed by gold, but even so, it's still backed by a country with natural resources, ideas, innovation, people working to say the least. When a country runs into economic problems they print more money and devalue their own currency. Can bitcoin even run in trouble considering it's not backed by any government or economy?
Conventional money machanics are open to debate and could undergo some changes to make the system more stable. That being said, bitcoins aren't backed by anything, aren't linked to an economy and have no intrinsic value on their own, even the people who buy into them are only doing so because they said 'open source' somewhere, and believe it's some kind of geeks currency. That all being well and true to some degree, this currency has no nation, has no base and does not care for the people of which it must cater for, whereas our own national currencies do (to some degree).
I was initially against the change to EURO's with the EC and as you can see many countries are now wanting to go back to their own currency.
That being said this sounds even more crazy, and I am confident that many have lost a lot of money buying into bitcoins.