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Re: GAK Flap Happening at a Good Time--Journalists Read!

On Mon, 4 Dec 1995, Dan Weinstein wrote:

> On Sun, 3 Dec 1995 06:20:52 -0500 (EST), you wrote:
> >On Sun, 3 Dec 1995, Dan Weinstein wrote:
> >
> >> On Sat, 2 Dec 1995 20:16:08 -0500 (EST), Black Unicorn
> >> <[email protected]> wrote:
> >> 
> >> 
> >> If you read what they had to say about this, you know that they are
> >> hoping others will create non-escrowed crypto hardware using the same
> >> interface.  I see no reason for them to not include support for any
> >> available hardware system (even if it includes GAK), as long as they
> >> continue to support non-escrowed encryption internally.  This allows
> >> the customer to decide that they have no problem with GAK and use the
> >> external system, or use the internal system and not have GAK.
> >
> >I read it quite carefully.  I just was not as easily taken in by the 
> >double speak as you were.
> I see, you cannot say that they are really supporting GAK based upon
> the actual statements made, so you simply assert it.

Again, you miss the point.  Again, you twist the issue.  I didn't say they 
were actively supporting GAK.  I said they were not opposing it with 
anything like vigor.

Show me now where I assert that "they are really supporting GAK."

I see.  You cannot say that I said that, so you simply assert it?

> >Hoping others will do something is about as useful as sitting on your thumb.
> Yes, but making something an economically viable venture is very
> useful.  That is what they have done.  They have implemented an
> interface into a widely available piece of software.  This makes it
> much more economically viable for others to implement strong crypto
> into another product using the same interface.

Uh... sure buddy.

Let's not forget something here.  Netscape is not removing itself from 
the role of crypto developer.  Quite the reverse.  They have purposefully 
included crypto in their product.  They claim to be for strong crypto.  I 
want to see more than words on that point.

When I said waiting for someone else to do something was useless, I was 
refering to Netscape's "allow others to oppose GAK actively while we do a 
lot of hand wringing" attitude.

> >Netscape is in a position to make some policy impact here.  If they 
> >insist on going another way, I want to hear why, not that they are all on 
> >our side and we should be nice because really we're all in this together, 
> >and afterall, Netscape isn't such a bad lot.
> Jeff Weinstein has said that Netscape is drafting an official position
> paper and that it would be available in the near future.

You, unlike me, are willing to let that be enough.  I will believe it 
when I see it.

This basically amounts to "at some point in the 'near future' I will tell 
you what we will do in the 'near future after the near future.'"

  If Netscape
> lives up to this, we will soon enough have the companies position and
> not just that of two employees (Jeff Weinstein and Jim Clark).  Why do
> you feel you must jump to judge the company based on the opinions of
> two of its employees?

Why do you feel you must sit on your hands and wait for the world to 
decide your fate for you?

Mr. Weinstein and Mr. Clark (I would hope) have some infulence in these 
matters.  They have not (as far as I have seen) demonstrated to anyone 
that they have thought about them much.

What precisely is it about my free-speech urges and taunt to energize 
them that frightens you?

Am I too loud for your taste?

Does the frige humming at night disturb you?

  This is especially questionable when one is
> clearly stating that the company is against GAK and the other is at
> worst being unclear.  If you feel they are being contradictory, wait a
> week and look at their policy statement then decide.

I would much rather try to get them to write the damn policy statement 
right in the first place than have to try and CHANGE a poor and intrenched 
policy once in place.

Clearly you have not done much of this kind of work in business or 
government before.

> >They can support whoever they like.  I just want to hear WHY.  More 
> >importantly, I don't want to be snowed with some horse hockey answer.  It 
> >insults my intelligence.  Yours was obviously unaffected.
> Wait a week and read their official statement then decide.

See above as to why this is foolish and lazy.

>  You accuse
> me of logical fallacies, but then argue through insult and assertion.

When the shoe fits....

> You have not pointed to a single fact or any contradictory statements
> in posts to this list.

Again, you have missed the target, and the barn.

I don't care about contradictory statements as much.  I care about a lack of 
demonstrated effort.  I have pointed to the absence of any single fact or 
statement that shows Netscape is really interested in trying to derail 
GAK, or promote strong crypto in anything like an active way.

  I will admit that Jim Clark was somewhat
> unclear, but I attribute this to the fact that the official company
> position is as yet not written and thus he is attempting to remain
> somewhat neutral.

And it is in my interest, and in my view everyone's interest, for him to 
be less than neutral, and instead quite violently pro-strong-crypto and 

It's called 'persuasion.'

> >> >I'd be interested to know what a 'government liason person' is.  It 
> >> >sounds to me like an 'in house lobbist.'  There is an old joke in the 
> >> >beltway about in house lobbists.
> >> >
> >> >I also would like to know why you are actively lobbying for 
> >> >'claification' rather than 'modification' of the current policy.


> >I believe you actually think you are teaching me something here.
> You asked why they wanted clarification and I simply responded.

No, I asked why ONLY clarification, and NOT modification.  Try reading 
the entire sentence.

> >I said before, and I will say again.  If Netscape is against GAK, then 
> >let them be AGAINST GAK.  If they are just going to try and finesse their 
> >way into the market without making to many waves, let's hear it that way 
> >instead of some crap about how they are 'lobbying actively against GAK' 
> >(Which I might point out, is an assertion that fell apart at the most 
> >basic prodding).
> Wait a week.

See above yet again why I would rather not.

> As far as their lobbying assertion falling apart, I must
> have missed this.  My understanding is that:
> A)  They support several industry groups that are taking an active
> position in opposition to GAK.

"I'm all for those people who are for the troops in the gulf."

Lot of good this does.

> B)  They have until very recently had only very limited resources.

My heart goes out.  Today they have resources, let's see some action.

> C)  Have just recently hired an in house lobbyist.

No, they have hired a 'government liason person.'  No one has explained 
with any detail what that means.

> D)  That they did not attend the Bernstein hearing.

Perhaps, perhaps not.  I have no idea.

> Now given point B, I see no reason to expect that they would in the
> past have done much more than they have.

Netscape has been nicely funded for quite a while in Washington business 
days.  A lot happens there in the time they have been loafing.

  Given point C, I see they
> are currently expanding their lobbying.

Uh... sure... and 0 + 1 is still only 1.

Show me some serious effort.  Name this expert lobbist who doubtlessly 
has a sparkling reputation.  Why was an individual and not a firm hired?

  If point D is the measure of
> crypto correctness, then I to am guilty.

Point D is of no real import to me.

  Though I do not live in the
> vicinity, I guess I should have been expected to fly up to lend my
> moral support.  Bovine excrement.

So.  We have one guy in washington, (maybe, is he posted in washington?) 
and a lot of excuses.

Adds up to:

"Bovine excrement."

> >> Also, lawyers usually advise clients based on a worst case scenario,

[Yadda yadda yadda]

> >I really think you are pompus enough to think you are teaching people 
> >things they don't know here.
> Again, you asked, I answered.  I did not expect that this would be new
> to anyone on the list, but you asked.

I think you need to read questions more carefully.

> >I invite you to re-read the entire conversation and discover, as an 
> >exercise, that the issue is not what the government is or is not doing, 
> >but what netscape is or is not doing.  I could care about Netscape's 
> >loose-lipped lawyers.
> You seem very concerned about what Netscape is doing, and as such
> should be concerned about what their lawyers are _forced_ to tell
> them.

I am more concerned about what Netscape is NOT doing.  How this has 
anything to do with what the lawyers (none of whom to my knowledge are 
lobbists) think?

> I understand that the discussion is about Netscape not the
> government, but discussing actions without discussing motives is
> useless.

A cute speech.  Still doesn't change the fact that a little fluff seems 
to have quite effectively taken you in.

> >> >
> >> >Netscape seems to be taking the position, "We'd love it if you'd let us 
> >> >do X, but we are happy to roll over for whatever."  and  "By the way, 
> >> >what is the rule on exporting software again?"
> >> >
> >> >I am impressed that some effort is being made.  I think it in the form of 
> >> >'too little, too late.'  But hey, who am I?
> >> 
> >> I think you are being too critical, they have done more than any
> >> company I know of to make easy to use crypto widely available.
> >
> >0 + .00001 = .00001
> >
> >Yes, just as last time you checked, .00001 is still more than 0.
> My point is that you are too quick to call your recent ally an enemy.

Netscape was never my ally.  They looked like a company worth investing 
in.  For the time I held stock, they were.  Their morass on this issue, 
and my general dislike for overhyped firms, made the investment less and 
less worth it to me.

Netscape did about what was par for the course, include crypto in a 
product that is likely to be used for financial information.  You think 
this is some great accomplishment?

You only strengthen my view that you are easily impressed.

> You may not see what Netscape has done as important, but I believe
> that many do (including me).  They are supposed to have integrated
> e-mail crypto in the final release of Navigator 2.0.  I will remind
> you that Jeff Weinstein has said that this will not include GAK.

I don't CARE what Netscape's past is.  I care what Netscape is doing with 
the signifcant power and voice they have.  I wonder if Netscape is 
selling out.

> >> They
> >> may be willing to obey the laws if they require GAK, but I do not feel
> >> that they are just rolling over either.  I strongly oppose GAK, but I
> >> do not believe that no crypto is better than GAK crypto.  I would
> >> rather keep some people out than nobody out.
> >
> >Your ignorance is assuming that the options you present are the only 
> >options available.  JW made the same mistake.  In logical discourse this 
> >is called "narrowing the field."  It's a version of the 'straw man' 
> >and a classic flaw in logical argument.
> I am not saying that the choice is between either no crypto or GAK
> crypto.

Now you need to read your answers more carefully.  Look up 11 lines.

  I am saying that they have only said that they will go to GAK
> if the choice is between GAK crypto and no crypto.

Read a few more lines up, where you say you don't think Netscape is 
rolling over.

  To the best of my
> knowledge they have not said that they would implement a GAK only
> product in any other situation.

In fact they have said very little of anything.  This is the point.

Again, what rises to the level of an 'anti-GAK' position in your view 
astounds me.  "Well, they didn't say they would implement GAK unless they 
had to."

"Well, I'll stop all this drug trafficking if anyone tells me I have to."

  I think that this is reasonable, I do
> not think that we should let it come to this.  We need to insure that
> they (or anyone else) are never put into that position.  (and yes they
> should to.)

Boy, sure seems like your ready to come out swinging!  But let's wait a 
week, eh?

> >> Dan Weinstein
> >> [email protected]
> >> http://www.earthlink.net/~danjw
> >> PGP public key is available from my Home Page.
> >> All opinions expressed above are mine.
> >> 
> >> "I understand by 'freedom of Spirit' something quite definite -
> >> the unconditional will to say No, where it is dangerous to say
> >> No.    
> >
> >This has got to be the most ironic of signatures I have ever seen.
> >
> >Why don't you begin to apply the cute quotes you put in your .sig to real 
> >life and tell Netscape to grow a backbone and say 'No.' to GAK?
> I sent a message to Netscape after reading the article that started
> this,  It simply stated that I wanted clarification on their position
> on GAK and that if they were to support it they would lose a loyal
> customer.  I have since been convinced by Jeff Weinstein's posts to
> this list that the company does not support GAK, and in fact they
> oppose it.

And what have they done to oppose it precisely?  Show me something 
besides 'send a man down' or 'appoint a committee' or 'consider the issue 
for a pending policy release.'

  You would do better to spend less time insulting people
> and more time trying to support your arguments.

And you need to read questions and your own statements before starting 
a reply.

> Dan Weinstein
> [email protected]
> http://www.earthlink.net/~danjw
> PGP public key is available from my Home Page.
> All opinions expressed above are mine.

My prefered and soon to be permanent e-mail address: [email protected]
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