The Fact Checker’s ongoing database of the false or misleading claims made by Trump since assuming office.
Direct link to Washington Post.
The Queen looked at her watch. The Queen does NOT like tardiness.
The Queen looked at her watch. The Queen does NOT like tardiness.
December 24th, 2016 — Christmas open letter for the People.
We are gathering in this letter, as a community, as a collective formed by diverse human beings, to represent the voice for words of wisdom, justice, faith and hope in order to wish you a Merry Christmas. But before we start any formality of solidarity, we want you to understand something. Clearly, the world changed drastically. People are expressing themselves politically, culturally and religiously different from the last century. This time of year, we have the opportunity to think about many important issues, and how they affect our lives.
People from either side of the political spectrum don’t know how to build a productive conversation or a debate anymore. They are often accusing each other of being too extreme. Families were broken up at the thanksgiving table because of the current political climate. What people don’t understand is that the spectrum only deals with absolutes. You can’t be 100% on one or the other side, we all carry a bit of both. If we can all think in a non-partisan manner and act in the name of progress rather than political opinion it will already be a better world. Although, we have the chance to control our own fate and take responsibility for our own actions, but the moment when the people start to be the problem, we have a bigger problem.
It all comes down that the ‘bigger problem’ is that a vast majority of people are feeling powerless more each year. As an example, it was revealing to see the grotesque paramilitary-style effort to keep the World Trade Organization (WTO) completely sealed off from public access, symbolizing dramatically the extent to which governmental institutions have become separated from the people they are supposed to represent. This is one of the events coincided served as a vivid reminder that it is no longer enough to ‘think global and act local’. We need to both think and act at both levels simultaneously.
It’s not for us to turn around and plead for a miracle to help with the environment, the migrant crisis, mass corruption, intolerance, poor education, the empire of banks, human rights, fundamentalism and wars.
We have to act and take these changes into our own hands. A world of peace and solidarity can only be accomplished by acknowledging and celebrating our diversity. In many ways, the cause of global harmony remains precariously poised. Global economic activity and advances in communications both illustrate humanity’s growing inter-connectedness, yet barriers, mistrust and animosity persist between people and cultures.
Sadly today, we also see tragic circumstances unfolding in too many parts of the globe. The horrific impact of the terrorist attacks and acts of violent extremism against certain communities such as the Shiites, Christians, Jews and Muslims as well as others, who are perceived as different given their ethnic or religious background, can be counted, in many cases, as acts of ethnic cleansing.
But we are well aware that we are not the only ones struggling against the alliance between corrupt politicians, mass extremism in political views and greedy companies. Our anger toward this notorious alliance is everywhere. We do know that our world under the epoch of neo-liberalism is filled with despair. Yet, all around the world, people are raising their voices to show another world is possible. Hope is everywhere. And finally, we learn from our struggle that when anger and hope come together it flourishes into the beauty of resistance.
Whether we are concerned with suffering born of poverty, with denial of basic freedoms, with armed conflict, or with a reckless attitude to the natural environment everywhere, we should not view these events in isolation. Eventually their repercussions are felt by all of us. We, therefore, need effective international action to address these global issues from the perspective of the oneness of humanity, and from a profound understanding of the deeply interconnected nature of today’s world.
However, responsibility for working for peace lies not only with our world leaders, but also with each of us individually. Peace starts within each one of us. When we have inner peace, we can be at peace with those around us. When our community is in a state of peace, it can share that peace with neighboring communities and so on. We can work consciously to develop feelings of love and kindness. For some of us, the most effective way to do so is through religious practice. For others it may be non-religious practices. What is important is that we each make a sincere effort to take seriously our responsibility for each other and the world we live.
We want you to perceive the outline of a just and peaceful society, to the achievement of which all have a responsibility to contribute with every possible effort. Building this society requires a wholehearted commitment to eliminate not only evident discrimination but also all barriers that divide groups, tribes, communities, collectives, minorities. At last, we believe that these goals can be achieved on the basis of increased awareness. Let us widen our perspective to include the well being of the whole world and its future generations in our vision of prosperity and freedom.
This message goes to all the people, the ordinary people, the majority, the minority. Specially to those who fought this year for their civil liberties, to the American Natives and the #NoDAPL resistance, to the Tibetans, to the African people, to the infosec and whistle-blowers community, to notable academic researchers, to the independent media and journalists, to social movements that are increasing more each day.
To the Resistance. Merry Christmas.
We are Anonymous
We are Legion
We do not forgive
We do not forget
Fine to introduce the basics of practical cryptography during IRL meetings.
That’s the way cypherpunks always did in the Bay Area and elsewhere worldwide.
A CryptoParty Handbook with good information and advice is out there as well.
Connect Yourself, Educate Yourself & Have Fun!
Cyberspace more hospitable to ideas of liberty and crypto anarchy
Here are a few points about why “cyberspace,” or a computer-mediated network, is more hospitable than physical locations for the kind of “crypto anarchy” libertarian system I’ve been describing.
Several folks have commented recently about ocean-going libertarian havens, supertankers used as data havens, and so forth. In the 1970s, especially, there were several unsuccessful attempts to acquire islands in the Pacific for the site of what some called “Libertaria.” (Some keywords: Vanuatu, Minerva, Mike Oliver, Tonga)
Obtaining an entire island is problematic. Getting the consent of the residents is one issue (familiar to those on the this list who weathered the Hurrican Andrew diversion debate). Being _allowed_ to operate by the leading world powers is another….the U.S. has enforced trade embargoes and blockades against many nations in the past several decades, including Cuba, North Korea, Libya, Iran, Iraq, andothers. Further, the U.S. has invaded some countries—Panama- is a good example—whose government it disliked. How long would a supertanker “data haven” or libertarian regime last in such an environment? (Stephenson’s fascinating Snow Crash didn’t address tthe issue of why the “Raft” wasn’t simply sunk by the remaining military forces.)
I should note that the recent splintering of countries may provide opportunities for libertarian (or PPL, if your prefer to think of it in this way) regions. Some have speculated that Russia itself is a candidate, given that it has little vested in the previous system and may be willing to abandon statism. If several dozen new countries are formed, some opportunities exist..
The basic problem is that physical space is too small, too exposed to the view of others. “Libertaria” in the form of, say, an island, is too exposed to the retaliatation of world powers. (I won’t go into the “private nukes” strategy, which I need to think about further.)
A floating private nation (or whatever it’s called) is too vulnerable to a single well-placed torpedo. Even if it serves as a kind of Swiss bank, and thus gets some of the same protection Switzerland got (to wit, many leaders kept their loot there), it is too vulnerable to a single attacker or invader. Piracy will be just one of the problems.
Finally, how many of us want to move to a South Pacific island? Or a North Sea oil rig? Or even to Russia?
Cyberspace looks more promising. There is more “space” in cyberspace, thus allowing more security and more colonizable space. And this space is coterminous with our physical space, accessible with proper terminals from any place in the world (though there may be attempts in physical space to block access, to restrict access to necessay cryptographic methods, etc.).
I won’t go into the various cryptographic methods here (see my earlier posting on the “Dining Cryptographers” protocol and various other postings on public key systems, digital mixes, electronic cash, etc.). Interested readers have many sources. (I have just read a superb survey of these new techniques, the 1992 Ph.D. thesis of Jurgen Bos, “Practical Privacy,” which deals with these various protocols in a nice little book.)
Alice and Bob, our favorite cryptographic stand-ins, can communicate and transact business without ever meeting or even knowing who the other is. This can be extended to create virtual communities subject only to rules they themselves reach agreement on, much like this very Extropians list. Private law is the only law, as there is no appeal to some higher authority like the Pope or police. (This is why I said in several of my potings on the Hurricane Andrew debate that I am sympathetic to the PPL view.)
And this is the most compelling advantage of “Crypto Libertaria”: an arbitrarily large number of separate “nations” can simultaneously exist. This allows for rapid experimentation, self-selection, and evolution. If folks get tired of some virtual community, they can leave. The cryptographic aspects mean their membership in some community is unknown to others (vis-a-vis the physical or outside world, i.e., their “true names”) and physical coercion is reduced.
Communalists are free to create a communal environment, Creative Anachronists are free to create their own idea of a space, and so on. I’m not even getting into the virtual reality-photorealistic images-Jaron Lanier sort of thing, as even current text-based systems are demonstrably enough to allow the kind of virtual communities I’m describing here (and described in Vinge’s “True Names,” in Gibson’s Neuromancer, in Sterling’s Islands in the Net, and in Stephenson’s Snow Crash…though all of them missed out on some of the most exciting aspects…perhaps my novel will hit the mark?).
But will the government allow these sorts of things? Won’t they just torpedo it, just as they’d torpedo an offshore ooirig data haven?
The key is that distributed systems have no nexus which can be knocked out. Neither Usenet norFidoNet can be disabled by any single government, as they are worldwide. Shutting them down would mean banning computer-to-computer communication. And despite the talk of mandatory “trap doors” in encryption systems, encryption is fundamentally easy to do and hard to detect. (For those who doubt this, let me describe a simple system I posted to sci.crypt several years ago. An ordinary digital audio tape (DAT) carries more than a gigabyte of data. This means that thhe least significant bit (LSB) of an audio DAT recordingng carries about 8megabytes of data! So Alice is stopped by the Data Police. They ask if she’s carrying illegal data. She smiles inocently and say “No. I know you’ll search me.” They find her Sony DATman and ask about her collection of tapes and live recordings. Alice is carrying 80 MB of data—about 3 entire days worth of Usenet feeds!—on each and every tape. The data are stored in the LSBs, completely indistinguishable from microphone and quantization noise…unless you know the key. Similar methods allow data to be undetectably packed into LSBs of the PICT and GIF pictures now flooding the Net, into sampled sounds, and even into messages like this…the “whitespace” on the right margin of this message carries a hidden message readable only to a few chosen Extropians.)
I’ve already described using religions and role-playing games as a kind of legal cover for the development and deployment of these techniques. If a church decides to offer “digital confessionals” for its far-flung members, by what argument will the U.S. government justify insisting that encryption not be used? (I should note that psychiatrists and similar professionals have a responsibility to their clients and to their licensing agencies to ensure the privacy of patient records. Friends of mine are using encryption to protect patient records. This is just one little example of how encryption is getting woven into the fabric of our electronic society. There are many other examples.)
In future discussions, I hope we can hit on some of the many approaches to deploying these methods. I’ve spent several years thinking about this, but I’ve surely missed some good ideas. The “crypto anarchy game” being planned is an attempt to get some of the best hackers in the Bay Area thinking along these lines and thinking of new wrinkles. Several have already offered to help further.
Some have commented that this list is not an appropriate place to discuss these ideas. I think it is. We are not discussing anything that is actually illegal, even under the broad powers of RICO (Racketeer-Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, used to go after “conspiracies” of porn dealers and gun dealers, amongst others). What we are discussing are long-range implications of these ideas.
In conclusion, it will be easier to form certain types of libertarian societies in cyberspace than in the real world of nations and physical locations. The electronic world is by no means complete, as we will still live much of our lives in the physical world. But economic activity is sharply increasing in the Net domain and these “crypto anarchy” ideas will further erode the power of physical states to tax and coerce residents.
Libertaria will thrive in cyberspace.
(written by Tim May, 1 Sep 92)
by John Perry Barlow
Governments of the Industrial World, you weary giants of flesh and steel, I come from Cyberspace, the new home of Mind. On behalf of the future, I ask you of the past to leave us alone. You are not welcome among us. You have no sovereignty where we gather.
We have no elected government, nor are we likely to have one, so I address you with no greater authority than that with which liberty itself always speaks. I declare the global social space we are building to be naturally independent of the tyrannies you seek to impose on us. You have no moral right to rule us nor do you possess any methods of enforcement we have true reason to fear.
Governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed. You have neither solicited nor received ours. We did not invite you. You do not know us, nor do you know our world. Cyberspace does not lie within your borders. Do not think that you can build it, as though it were a public construction project. You cannot. It is an act of nature and it grows itself through our collective actions.
You have not engaged in our great and gathering conversation, nor did you create the wealth of our marketplaces. You do not know our culture, our ethics, or the unwritten codes that already provide our society more order than could be obtained by any of your impositions.
You claim there are problems among us that you need to solve. You use this claim as an excuse to invade our precincts. Many of these problems don’t exist. Where there are real conflicts, where there are wrongs, we will identify them and address them by our means. We are forming our own Social Contract . This governance will arise according to the conditions of our world, not yours. Our world is different.
Cyberspace consists of transactions, relationships, and thought itself, arrayed like a standing wave in the web of our communications. Ours is a world that is both everywhere and nowhere, but it is not where bodies live.
We are creating a world that all may enter without privilege or prejudice accorded by race, economic power, military force, or station of birth.
We are creating a world where anyone, anywhere may express his or her beliefs, no matter how singular, without fear of being coerced into silence or conformity.
Your legal concepts of property, expression, identity, movement, and context do not apply to us. They are all based on matter, and there is no matter here.
Our identities have no bodies, so, unlike you, we cannot obtain order by physical coercion. We believe that from ethics, enlightened self-interest, and the commonweal, our governance will emerge . Our identities may be distributed across many of your jurisdictions. The only law that all our constituent cultures would generally recognize is the Golden Rule. We hope we will be able to build our particular solutions on that basis. But we cannot accept the solutions you are attempting to impose.
In the United States, you have today created a law, the Telecommunications Reform Act, which repudiates your own Constitution and insults the dreams of Jefferson, Washington, Mill, Madison, DeToqueville, and Brandeis. These dreams must now be born anew in us.
You are terrified of your own children, since they are natives in a world where you will always be immigrants. Because you fear them, you entrust your bureaucracies with the parental responsibilities you are too cowardly to confront yourselves. In our world, all the sentiments and expressions of humanity, from the debasing to the angelic, are parts of a seamless whole, the global conversation of bits. We cannot separate the air that chokes from the air upon which wings beat.
In China, Germany, France, Russia, Singapore, Italy and the United States, you are trying to ward off the virus of liberty by erecting guard posts at the frontiers of Cyberspace. These may keep out the contagion for a small time, but they will not work in a world that will soon be blanketed in bit-bearing media.
Your increasingly obsolete information industries would perpetuate themselves by proposing laws, in America and elsewhere, that claim to own speech itself throughout the world. These laws would declare ideas to be another industrial product, no more noble than pig iron. In our world, whatever the human mind may create can be reproduced and distributed infinitely at no cost. The global conveyance of thought no longer requires your factories to accomplish.
These increasingly hostile and colonial measures place us in the same position as those previous lovers of freedom and self-determination who had to reject the authorities of distant, uninformed powers. We must declare our virtual selves immune to your sovereignty, even as we continue to consent to your rule over our bodies. We will spread ourselves across the Planet so that no one can arrest our thoughts.
We will create a civilization of the Mind in Cyberspace. May it be more humane and fair than the world your governments have made before.
February 8, 1996
Introduction to the very first Phrack magazine by Taran King
Welcome to the Phrack Inc. Philes. Basically, we are a group of phile writers who have combined our philes and are distributing them in a group. This newsletter-type project is home-based at Metal Shop. If you or your group are interested in writing philes for Phrack Inc. you, your group, your BBS, or any other credits will be included. These philes may include articles on telcom (phreaking/hacking), anarchy (guns and death & destruction) or kracking. Other topics will be allowed also to an certain extent. If you feel you have some material that’s original, please call and we’ll include it in the next issue possible. Also, you are welcomed to put up these philes on your BBS/AE/Catfur/ Etc. The philes will be regularly available on Metal Shop. If you wish to say in the philes that your BBS will also be sponsering Phrack Inc., please leave feedback to me, Taran King stating you’d like your BBS in the credits. Later on. TARAN KING
See this and all the other great hacking news at http://www.phrack.com/
Remember Adam Back – he wrote a version of the RSA algorithm for public key cryptography in three lines of Perl and suggested people use it as an email signature file: