Message Hash: d98c9ddd887543295ad34c419b52a2f4fbe8168f8e9235eff2e667f672a2081c
Message ID: <97May22.firstname.lastname@example.org>
Reply To: <email@example.com>
UTC Datetime: 1997-05-22 17:58:07 UTC
Raw Date: Fri, 23 May 1997 01:58:07 +0800
From: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Fri, 23 May 1997 01:58:07 +0800 To: email@example.com Subject: Change, the Internet, and Government (was Cypherpunk criminalization) In-Reply-To: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Message-ID: <97May22.email@example.com> MIME-Version: 1.0 Content-Type: text/plain On Thu, 22 May 1997, Kent Crispin wrote: > On Wed, May 21, 1997 at 07:16:03PM -0800, Tim May wrote: > > At 5:41 PM -0800 5/21/97, Kent Crispin wrote: > > [...] > > > But more rules need to change. Many of us (most of us?) expect strong > > crypto to be a catalyst for some major changes. You, Kent, obviously > > disagree, > > Yep. I disagree. Strong crypto is one facet of the internet. I can now form a group with people around the world (like the volunteer organizations DeToqueville speaks of which organize to solve problems). Data can now flow across national borders. Things like prices and ideas are data. Even money is to a large extent data. When government begins trying to take action to prevent data from flowing, it will simply be hidden from them. It is one mechanism for routing around "faults", though I don't think the designers of the internet considered taxation and censorship as faults. Strong crypto by itself won't change anything. Worldwide communication that can be both point-to-point and broadcast already is changing quite a lot of things. When that needs to be, or even if it would just help to be completely private or authentic strong crypto comes in. The steam engine changed very little except to remove water from coal mines. The production line and railroads had a greater impact. In the same sense, PK systems were invented long ago and were a mere curiosity. Strong crypto won't catalyze any major change, but worldwide private and authentic communications will. > > and push for more government involvement to shore up the existing > > rules. > > False. How *do* you come up with these? To continue on a more general level: Going back to "Economics in one Lesson" - one restriction invariably leads to another. Rent controls keep down prices. So Landlords cannot maintain their buildings, so slumlord laws are passed to try to force them to keep them open. No buildings get built so new subsidies have to be given to build rent-controlled buildings. People who live there will stay even when their income goes up so more laws to means test must be passed. So people hide their assets to qualify so financial disclosure laws have to be added. At each level, the restriction needs several more restrictions to work. (I think Hazlit uses tariffs or food subsidies to illustrate it, but you can use almost anything). Everytime government passes an illegitimate restriction, it starts a race between those seeking to evade it and the lawgivers who have to close the loopholes or increase enforcement. But to close the circle, the internet is much faster than government ever can be.
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