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Lexis-Nexis scare = opportunity

I've been reading articles about the recent flap over Lexis-Nexis' P-TRAK
database with interest.  A recent Associated Press article said that the
lines at Lexis-Nexis have been jammed with individuals requesting they be
removed from the database.

Lexis-Nexis is certainly not the only database of its kind, but it has
certainly generated quit a bit of attention and panic

In terms of cypherpunk goals, I think this is a positive development.  It
demonstrates ever-so-clearly that the average "Joe Schmoe" does not follow
the government line that privacy and security are mutually exclusive
concepts.  Rather, there is an instinctive recognition that privacy and
security are inextricably linked.

Only when the government pulls on emotional (as opposed to logical) strings
by pulling out the "if you only knew what we knew" & "if it saves just one
life" arguments does the easily swayed public get pulled in the other

The flap over P-TRAK repudiates arguments by Freeh and others that American
citizens want to give up their freedoms in the interest of security.

If you are in a position to influence government policy (ie. Jim Ray with
Judge Kozinski, EFF personages involved in the Bernstein case, PRO-CODE
advocates, et al.), then keep these clippings handy.  Here is a concrete
example that our government and law-enforcement leaders are woefully out of
touch with average citizens (not to mention reality!).

The leap from P-TRAK to GAK is not that large in the so-called court of
public opinion.

Sometimes monkey-wrenching is as simple as pointing out the obvious.


 Omegaman <mailto: [email protected]>
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