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Re: "Industry Group Rebuffs U.S. on Encryption"

At 1:14 AM 11/9/95, Bill Stewart wrote:

| The fact that Netscape is including
| secure email in their Navigator next release can be a big lever pushing the
| Feds toward giving up, and perhaps deserves some publicity once the 
| release version is out the door.

Giving up on what? On doing everything within its power to keep the world
beyond itself strong-cypto-free? Not likely.

In only a few decades, crypto's gone from being unheard of to the object
of an increasingly high-profile PR war over "domestic and international
terrorists and criminals." The govt's position, however, hasn't changed
substantially: it doesn't like crypto, and it never will. There will never
be a time when the cops who pull you over or drop by for a visit will say,
"Ma'am, if you've encrypted that, we respect the fact that you don't want
anyone to see that--so we'll just be going bow. You have a nice day, now,
y'hear." And there will never be no cops.

The gov't may well lose this fight eventually, but a few heads are gonna
get broken before either side wins. This fight is playing itself out on
the level of policy now, but it's much bigger than a policy issue. And the
"revolution" of Newt and his legions of weenies (I say nothing of Clinton
and his legions of weenies) is bullshit: he's an empty opportunist who's
riding a fractious coalition that'll make Clinton look like a libertarian
if it ever gets control of the country. And right now he's cluing in to
the fact that he can score some points on encryption issues: he's got his
eye on the snowballing WiReD coalition, which *no one* knew existed until
a few years ago.