1994-08-07 - Re: e$: Cypherpunks Sell Concepts

Header Data

From: “Perry E. Metzger” <perry@imsi.com>
To: rah@shipwright.com (Robert Hettinga)
Message Hash: 5eba2030454d2aab049dbc29e044adc1aa5ae45f0b04ff6348b09ead156bc869
Message ID: <9408071224.AA19705@snark.imsi.com>
Reply To: <199408070251.WAA26419@zork.tiac.net>
UTC Datetime: 1994-08-07 12:24:22 UTC
Raw Date: Sun, 7 Aug 94 05:24:22 PDT

Raw message

From: "Perry E. Metzger" <perry@imsi.com>
Date: Sun, 7 Aug 94 05:24:22 PDT
To: rah@shipwright.com (Robert Hettinga)
Subject: Re: e$: Cypherpunks Sell Concepts
In-Reply-To: <199408070251.WAA26419@zork.tiac.net>
Message-ID: <9408071224.AA19705@snark.imsi.com>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

Robert Hettinga says:
> At  7:09 PM 8/6/94 -0700, Hal wrote:
> >There are two legal problems that I could see being used against digital
> >cash.  The first is the civil war era prohibition on banks issuing private
> >bank notes.
> Where you stand on this one depends on where you sit. ;-). It seems to me
> that one could just as easily treat digicash as securities denominated in
> dollars, just like shares in a money market mutual fund, or more to the
> point, the actual money market instruments, repos, for instance. It's going

Robert, you don't understand. The U.S. is not governed by laws any
more. In the financial community, every action you perform is illegal.
The only way that you stay out of jail is by being nice to the
bureaucrats. They allow money market funds, even though they
technically violate a dozen laws, because they feel like it. They
could prohibit them if they felt like it, too. The bureaucrats aren't
going to want digicash, so they are going to find plenty of excuses to
prohibit it. You can't do legal hacks in an environment like this. It
doesn't work. If the bureaucrats don't like you, they shut you down,
and there is not a damn thing you can do about it, period.

True, you can leave the country and do your business there -- I know
several hedge funds that already refuse to take any customers from the
U.S. because they don't want the headaches, and there are other
similar things happening in lots of other parts of the financial
industry. However, don't think you can finesse the folks at the Fed,
the IRS, the Treasury, and the SEC -- they are monsters, and they
won't be stopped by the courts.