1994-04-05 - going in anarchic circles

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From: tmp@netcom.com
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Message Hash: 3642352e3cd8ad9df7e99bb03024659749d2af59e8053ed7892cdd311da9cd25
Message ID: <199404051818.LAA17079@netcom9.netcom.com>
Reply To: N/A
UTC Datetime: 1994-04-05 18:17:44 UTC
Raw Date: Tue, 5 Apr 94 11:17:44 PDT

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From: tmp@netcom.com
Date: Tue, 5 Apr 94 11:17:44 PDT
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Subject: going in anarchic circles
Message-ID: <199404051818.LAA17079@netcom9.netcom.com>
MIME-Version: 1.0
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From: Grand Epopt Feotus <68954@brahms.udel.edu>
>	I comprehend my own brand of crypto/cyber-anarchy.  I
>	personally do not go for any of the regulations or
>	"protections" that have been proposed so far.  IMO, if
>	you want to put your machine on the net, take your
>	chances.  It's getting very cheap to set up a node now,
>	and if I choose to do so I would not take kindly to any
>	restrictions upon my activity, be it legal, or illegal
>	even.  

ok, suppose that every internet company decided that they would install
`fingerprint keyboards' and require use of them by users. these keyboards
sense your fingerprints as you type on the keyboard and can be used to
reject users not authorized to use a given account. they simply tell people
who do not want to use the system, `tough luck'. in a sense, this is something
like how our social security system and drivers licensing works today. there
are few (legal) alternatives to them.

so, how do you get a connection to this net? you are probably going to
propose `starting a new net without these draconian restrictions'. but
what you have done is propose a new set of rules -- `we don't need no
stinkin rules'. how is your system going to deal with sites that corrupt
passed mail? that harbor hackers and crackers? it really amazes me guys,
but if you think the internet is some kind of anarchy right now,you
are completely mistaken. you agree to a set of rules when you join the
net. those rules are set by your provider.  you agree not to corrupt
mail you forward, don't mailbomb usenet, etc.  currently there are many 
`unspoken rules' -- but it makes sense for them to be codified so that 
everyone understands what they can expect of each other.

there is no guarantee of your
access to the current net. doesn't that seem kind of fragile? you think
you don't have to have any faith? it seems you have a lot of faith you
will always be able to get a connection to the internet. why not try
to set up a system or organization that is committed to formalizing
the rights and expectations of users on the net and specifying what
constitutes `basic access'?

>	Myself, I would much rather take the lumps of some
>	abuse, rather than have ANY regualtion put on my usage of
>	my personal node, or interaction between connected nodes.

ok, so i set up a node that randomly corrupts all the mail that i pass
through my site. i mailbomb the cypherpunks list and all the remailers.
how do you deal with it? you send shrieking mail to all my upstream
site providers asking them to yank me. what if i have bribed them
all very lucratively? what if they decide that you don't pay enough,
so they are going to yank you instead? (not worth the hassle of your
insults, after all) what if i have dozens of accounts on different
public domain sites? i seem to be going in circles here. 

>	This makes room for alot of abuse, I admit that, but I
>	just don't see how all these Bill-O-CyberRights stuff,
>	and CyberKommunity will work when your dealing with a
>	space that has no boundary.  This is a metric space, whos
>	distances are measured in connectivity, there are no real
>	boundaries as the are easily breached and morphed.

excuse me, mr. idealist, but you live in a world that no one would
recognize as their own. cyberspace exists only because people have
constructed it. you cannot escape that interaction of a community.
no man is an island. what guarantees you will have a connection to 
the network today? absolutely nothing. it is just your faith in
the great cybergods. cyberspace is nothing but crystallized human
interaction.  how do you deal with the `pathological' cases of human
behavior such as harassment, terrorism, censorship, etc?

>	How the hell are you going to evict
>	me if I break one of the laws?  There is no way you can
>	develop a fool-proof system to control use, I even
>	seriously doubt you can install a shitty system even.

unix passwords represent a reasonable amount of security. they prevent
me from hijacking your account. more sophisticated levels exist.

look, you are evicted from your apartment if you don't pay your rent. it
is just as simple to evict someone from their cyberspatial connection,
and throw out all their furniture on the street!! believe me, it has 
happened to me twice!!

>	Basically if I want to do something, it will get done.
>	The whole concept of a police force controlling
>	cyberspace is a leap back about a billion evolution
>	cycles.  You can't patrol an amorphous blob.  

don't think of it as `us vs. them'. think of it as `us' erecting our
own framework of self-regulation. it would allow `us' to get rid of the
detweilers of the world in our community. cyberspace is not an amorphous
Gibsonian blob!! it is a physical infrastructure policed by humans as
simply as our physical roads are!! the police already exist, they are 
called `system administrators', except they have no uniform code of 
conduct today, except `if something pisses me off, disconnect it'.

>	If they dont like what my node is doing, than cut
>	connections to my node.

what if you wake up one day and find that all the people you want to
talk to, and you thought were your friends, all on a separate network,
and you are isolated with Detweiler, Depew, Morris, and Mitnick on the

>	I would
>	actually prefer the possibility to Detwielering so to
>	speak,than to allow someone to try and control this.  If

hee, hee, suit yourself....

>	You are unable to hold someone
>	accountable for their own deeds in a space like
>	kyberspace where psuedonyms are part of the fabric of the
>	space.

cyberspace is what we make it. if no name is ever connected to a human,
it can be constructed that way. if identity is important (as most of
human history seems to imply) we can translate it into the new realm. but
you are continuously mixing up what is possible with what you want. if
you don't want something that is possible, then it's possibility is 

why don't you just preface your remarks by saying `i only
want a version of cyberspace where no one is responsible for their
actions!!' and i'd just leave it alone. as it stands you argue that
cyberspace = anarchy by definition. i cannot agree.

this dialogue appears to be at the point of arguing two different religions,
so it is not very fruitful for any of us, but if grand epopt feotus represents
the basic cypherpunk views, then i find it all very fascinating. you guys 
realize that you have a very unusual culture that is highly distinct from
virtually any other culture ... at least that i am aware of. you do seem
to have some parallels to the russian nihilists, some of the libertarians,
some of the anarchists, but you have a very distinct blend of it ....

anyway, it is all kind of bizarrely alien to me, so maybe i will check out
that cyberwonk group or whatever that eli brandt mentioned and see if anyone
there is on the same wavelength.

pseudonymously yours,