On Sun, 18 Sep 2016 21:20:15 -0000
xorc...@sigaint.org wrote:

> > On Sun, 18 Sep 2016 16:22:44 -0000
> >     So, how effective have your crypto techniques and tools been
> >     against the state?
> Depends on what your metric is, I suppose. But, I'd argue that absent
> Matt Blaze's Clipper chip hack, your land line phones would have been
> entirely tapped well before 9/11. Sure, it didn't matter longer term
> because cell phones became the defacto standard. It remains to be
> seen whether Silent Circle will have an impact.

        I think, though I'm not completely sure, that there was a
        rather widespread opposition to the clipper chip, including
        opposition among more 'respectable' members of the
        establishment. The same members of the establishment that today
        fully backdoor their own chips, like intel and amd. 


> Bitcoin is causing a stir, and providing the budding opportunity for
> an economy absent a state.

        Yes, bitcoin is interesting, but if so called regulators
        wanted to damage it, they could do so in a few days. 

> These two examples, to my way of thinking, have had a more tangible
> outcome than observation, and discussion.. and perhaps, even more than
> outright protest. Because I don't see Wall St. responding to
> protests.. but they ARE responding to Bitcoin, and implementing their
> own block-chain mechanisms.

        I'm sure wall street would respond to real attacks against
        them. Whatever protests were done, I don't think they were
        serious. Real riotting and beating up bank owners doesn't seem
        like an irrelevant 'tool'.

        And yes, there seems to be a sizable amout of blockchain hype
        in the financial mafia, but I'm not sure what it means. It
        seems to mostly be...meaningless hype.  Those people don't need
        any new crypto techniques - they have the ultimate technical
        device, the printing press, now gone digital. That and the
        state's guns.

> >     And what is stoping you from discussing crypto? Rhetorical
> >     question of course. The answer is, you and others can
> > discuss whatever you want and ignore whatever posters you want to
> >     ignore. It's not like the list has a 100kb quota per day
> > that's all being used up by 'off topic' posts.
> Yeah, sure. I can ignore the pissing and moaning about the media, and
> the state. And likewise you can ignore my pissing and moaning about
> this list.

> Or, I can engage - as you can. It seems we're both favoring the later.
> >     Is that supposed to mean : only 'abuses' of power are a
> >     problem, not power per se?
> "I tried being an anarchist but there are too many rules."

        Haha! That's a good one =)

> It's not supposed to mean anything other than what I said. People that
> make it to cypherpunks are already quite likely informed. I don't see
> the need in pointing out the obvious.

        Seems to me that at least a few posters don't really get the
        full picture, but OK.

> But, to answer your inquiry about power directly, I'll bite. Do I
> think there are "legitimate" forms of power? Depends on what you mean
> by legitimate. Do I like it? No. But I accept reality. I wish that
> reality was different. It would be nice if power structures were
> different, and while I'm at it, I think I'd like to add more purples,
> and some green to the daily sunset. But that is all nonsense. Reality
> just IS.

        That's pretty much a tautology. But reality includes people, who
        are supposed to be moral agents and can choose to behave in
        different ways. 

> And reality IS that every social animal has a pecking order.. an
> alpha/beta dynamic. Humans are not exempt from this, and it manifests
> for us, in various forms, and governments and our institutions are
> among them. It's why the most driven, "alpha" sociopaths rise to
> power, and the whiny betas piss and moan about it, and don't.

        So you think there are no honest people - people who seem
        honest are actually cowards? 

> Changing that game is about a lot more than changing any individual
> institution. It is about more than changing ALL the institutions.
> Crypto won't help there, except as a tool to avoid state oppression.
> Activism and protests won't help, except as a means to draw attention
> to minor issues. Even if you manage to effect full-on insurrection,
> and get rid of alpha-male school bully #1, unless you change the very
> dynamic of behavior, some other douche will just take his place.

        Yes true. On the other it seems reasonable to expect that if
        running a government gets you killed, wannabe rulers will think
        twice about it. 

> And that, in a nutshell, is why I don't favor even bothering with
> most of this stuff. The depths of "the problem" go deep enough that
> all it does is to become its own form of distraction. Rather, I
> prefer to proceed this way:
> Find a small, soluble problem that fills a need. Propose a solution. 
> Implement it. Repeat.
> If everyone does a little, a lot will get done.

        What kind of small, soluble problems do you have in mind? 

> >     "Don't get me wrong", I would love to have secure computing
> > and telecom platforms, but it's painfully obvious that in the last
> >     20 years we've moved in the exact opposite direction. Now
> > the hardware comes compromised. "out of the box". And that's not
> >     because of off-topic posts to the cpunks mailing list.
> No different than 20 years ago. You know Win95 wasn't secure. The
> remote exploits for Linux and BSD were laughable.

        True, but I was thinking of hardware. Do you think that
        hardware 20 years ago was as bad as it is today? 

> If you want shit secure, then, as now, you have to work it over.
> In many respects, its a matter of shoveling shit against the tide,
> sure .. but actually doing the shoveling is more effect than
> philosophizing about the gravitational pull of the Moon, and the
> exact mechanisms of its producing tides.
> The moon exists. The alpha/beta dynamic exists. You fucking DEAL with
> it, you suck it up, and you shovel shit trying to clean up the
> fucking mess. Or, you deal with it, and shovel shit working for "the
> Man."
> It's just the nature of things.

        Trying to clean the mess can be a reasonable option if it can
        reasonably succeed. If not, what's the point of 'sucking it

        I'm certainly not going to work for the man, but I'm not
        inclined to try to clean the mess if it's pointless. So doing
        nothing appears as a third option. And there may be more options
        I guess.


> I'd love to be proven wrong, however.

        I'd point out that yes, the current system is a horrid mess,
        but if we assume it's the result of real, unchangeable 'human
        nature' that 'just exists', then any action is pointless,
        unless we want to join 'their' side of the game.

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