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Re: ecash remailer

Responding to several subthreads at once:

Dave M., I get the feeling we're talking about completely different scenarios.
What I had in mind boils down to the case of Alice laundering money through
Ed with payer (and maybe payee) anonymity, then crying "Thief !" and getting
the bank to trace Ed. Without adding anything else, it's her word against his.

Aleph, I think you raise an important objection. After the money has been
through the wash a few (dozen) times, it's hard to tell whence it came. This 
leads into Bill's point:

Bill writes:
> But as near as I can tell, _any_ merchant has that risk, because there's
> no way for Ed to distinguish between cash that Bob withdrew himself
> and cash that Bob got from someone else.  Does this mean that anybody
> who sells goods to anonymous clients is automatically a money-launderer?
> If so, either the bogus money-laundering laws have to go (yay!) 
> or laws against selling to anonymous clients will get written (boo!) 
> or selective enforcement and entrapment will become increasingly popular, 
> leading merchants to refuse to do anonymous business just to defend 
> themselves against extortionists\\\\\\\\\\\\legitimate needs of law 
> enforcement?

Indeed. But really, _everyone_ who accepts cash and disburses money is a
money launderer. When I hand a bored high school student some cash for
lemonade at a supermarket, the market launders my money. I don't have to be
strongly anonymous. Even if they checked my ID before taking my greenbacks, 
they would have no way of knowing whether those were ill-gotten gains or not.
Monetary value just isn't intrinsically good or bad, period.

Don suggests the use of receipts to counter fraudulent theft claims. But how 
are we to arrange receipts for payer-anonymous transactions ?  With paper 
cash, banker Ursula of course need not worry about double spending, so she 
doesn't have to track which bills have been spent. That makes it hard for
Alice to fraudulently (or truthfully !) accuse Louie the Launderer of theft
via this protocol, unless Alice happens to be the Treasury Dept. 

-Futplex <[email protected]>
Please don't cc: me on replies to the list; I get too much mail as it is.