1997-09-12 - Re: House National Security committee guts SAFE, worse than no bill

Header Data

From: Black Unicorn <unicorn@schloss.li>
To: “Brock N. Meeks” <brock@well.com>
Message Hash: 551e204b2fae1d33aae1ddcfb851c0b452090c80b7440cbb545c588855833175
Message ID: <>
Reply To: <Pine.GSO.3.95.970909193137.9741A-100000@well.com>
UTC Datetime: 1997-09-12 22:31:33 UTC
Raw Date: Sat, 13 Sep 1997 06:31:33 +0800

Raw message

From: Black Unicorn <unicorn@schloss.li>
Date: Sat, 13 Sep 1997 06:31:33 +0800
To: "Brock N. Meeks" <brock@well.com>
Subject: Re: House National Security committee guts SAFE, worse than no bill
In-Reply-To: <Pine.GSO.3.95.970909193137.9741A-100000@well.com>
Message-ID: <>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

At 11:06 PM 9/9/97 -0700, you wrote:
>On Tue, 9 Sep 1997, Declan McCullagh wrote:
>[Jonah Seiger writes]:
>> > There are important policy implications of this language.  And
>> > it is extremely significant that Reinsch would be critical at all,
>> > considering that the Committee voted to substantially undercut the bill
>> > (one of Reinsch's top priorities).  Perhaps you missed this nuance.
>[Declan takes over]:
>> The "important policy implication" of this language may just be Freeh
>> serving as a convenient launching platform for trial balloons. Reinsch can
>> swat them down as he sees fit if they get hit by too severe a barrage,
>> then reintroduce them later after the clamor dies down. (Politically, BTW,
>> it is much more interesting what Gore said today than Reinsch.) Like I
>> said, bad cop and worse cop. Reinsch was critical of nuances -- ones that
>> you perhaps missed -- not the general plan to wire in Big Brother.
>Gore didn't say shit.  Sorry but there is no polite way to say this.  
>Gore's remarks at the SPA speech were a great example of "state speak" 
>which the State Dept. has perfected, saying much and in "code" through 
>the use of phrasing and even tone.
>Gore said the White House couldn't support Freeh's plan... what he meant 
>was "yet" because, in fact, thereis no formal plan to "accept."

What the (nameless) SPA keynote speaker said (on stage and off to the sides
after his presentation) was much more interesting.  The words "old dogs,
new tricks" and some private discussion I share with him convince me that
the administration is violently split.  Understand that in the Washington
world his comments betray a extremely heated debate behind the scenes.

Bottomline, the United States is probably going to get the administation
bill next year and we will have to take strong crypto there underground.
(This is because there is no compromise.  Either the government can break
it at will, or it can't).  Unfortunate, but clearly the most probable outcome.

>But the minute that the House or Senate pass such a proposal out of 
>committee is the minute WhH policy changes.  And I'll be anyone one 
>that... any takers?
>Gore is playing word games, practing for the run for the money in 2000.

The only glimmer of hope is the little whisperings that I heard over the
week which say the anti-crypto language put in by intelligence will be
yanked out all over again in (Judiciary?).