1997-11-30 - Re: Freemen and Serfs

Header Data

From: Tim May <tcmay@got.net>
To: cypherpunks@Algebra.COM
Message Hash: 9841136af47f7c8b8396e2ac97ffc67eb2b689c746c107530b2cbfa18c10fb9f
Message ID: <v03102806b0a6dbb52bae@[]>
Reply To: <199711260038.BAA09899@basement.replay.com>
UTC Datetime: 1997-11-30 10:16:43 UTC
Raw Date: Sun, 30 Nov 1997 18:16:43 +0800

Raw message

From: Tim May <tcmay@got.net>
Date: Sun, 30 Nov 1997 18:16:43 +0800
To: cypherpunks@Algebra.COM
Subject: Re: Freemen and Serfs
In-Reply-To: <199711260038.BAA09899@basement.replay.com>
Message-ID: <v03102806b0a6dbb52bae@[]>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

At 5:38 PM -0700 11/25/97, Anonymous wrote:

>There is a widely held belief that cryptoanarchy is an all or nothing
>proposition; that is, the future can be a glorious cryptoanarchy or a
>dismal police state.  (I think this is Tim May's analysis, but perhaps
>others also contributed.)

This is a common misunderstanding of what I (and others) have written. In
particular, as just one item of many, I've never predicted that there will
be some kind of overall "anarchy" (as normally understood, even in the
anarcho-capitalist sense). Rather, I have predicted (correctly, so far)
that certain people, certain organizations, certain entities will use the
new "degrees of freedom" in anonymous, pseudonymous, untraceable,
unsurveillable communications systems to bypass laws, mores, and dominant
institutions. As we are seeing every day, more and more.

The effect is to to create an environment without government intrusion.
This is what I call crypto anarchy.

>It isn't clear to me that these two environments cannot co-exist in a
>stable equilibrium.  Historically, in many societies which practiced
>slavery, large numbers of people were neither slaves nor slave owners.

Sure, and I've said the same thing many times. The governments of the world
are cracking down on "illegal thoughts," and illegal vegetables, illegal
defense items, illegal television programs, and on and on. At the same
time, bootleg channels are proliferating, copyright is being skirted, money
laundering is exploding, and on and on.

The crackdown has the effect of making the sheeple even more obedient and
making the adventurers (the wolves?) even bolder. Technology works for
those who use it.

Very Nietzscheian.

--Tim May

The Feds have shown their hand: they want a ban on domestic cryptography
Timothy C. May              | Crypto Anarchy: encryption, digital money,
ComSec 3DES:   408-728-0152 | anonymous networks, digital pseudonyms, zero
W.A.S.T.E.: Corralitos, CA  | knowledge, reputations, information markets,
Higher Power: 2^2,976,221   | black markets, collapse of governments.
"National borders aren't even speed bumps on the information superhighway."