[ExI] my take on assange
spike at rainier66.com
spike at rainier66.com
Mon Mar 16 04:04:10 UTC 2020
From: spike at rainier66.com <spike at rainier66.com>
>>… The US is afraid to make dictatorial choices at the moment, due to the real possibility that it might later become public knowledge.
>…JA! Thank for that SR. May dictatorial choices alllllwaaaaays later become public knowledge and may the US be forever afraid to make dictatorial choices…In that scenario, I see no reason to blame Julian Assange for any of our troubles… spike
Back a long time ago, ExI_chat had a loooot more people on it and covered a lot of ground. There was a daily 5-post limit that was more strictly enforced (and more needed then.) As a result, we often broke off smaller groups and formed email circles to discuss specific topics. I was in several of these, including one with Hal Finney where he formed up some ideas that led to BlockChain. He was really into that kind of thing and was a supremely talented person, along with being one of the nicest guys you ever met, both online and in person.
We also formed a group around government secrecy, which Julian was in, led my Mike Lorrey. Those two formed opposite poles of the debate: Mike was a big privacy advocate, Julian held the notion that if no one has secrets then corruption cannot hide, etc.
I mostly listened to the debate and was in the middle, but if I leaned either way, it was toward Julian’s side. Mike was very much into American politics at every level, gun-rights extremist, a Libertarian party guy, but Julian never really indicated he followed politics, or demonstrated any particular masterly or knowledge of it outside Australian matters. He greatly admired American first amendment rights, and argued that this was the basis of all freedom, to tell government secrets if he found them out by any means.
I would describe Julian as abrasive but not intentionally adversarial or insulting. He was just one-dimensional and very insistent, very inflexible. He showed little or no interest in other topics, but would debate in a minute if anyone opposed his notions on privacy, particularly government privacy. His notion was that governments can see us, regardless of what we do. They can always see what we are doing. So we should be able to see what they are doing, to help balance the power.
I found his argument compelling, then and now.
At the time, I went off on another kinda related tangent: how to encrypt our messages, making the snoops able to recognize that there is an encrypted message there. It would look like an ordinary message, but would contain something else encrypted within. Mike wanted all strong encryption to be legal and available at all levels, whereas I went toward technology to disguise that encryption was being used: steganography.
As I recall, Mike and Julian eventually really got into it with each other and the group broke up.
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