*AEI-SPAM-MARK* Re: Governance of anonymous financial services
jthorn at aei.mpg.de
Fri Mar 30 18:19:15 EDT 2007
On Fri, 30 Mar 2007, Ian G wrote:
> The reserve assets' location(s) is fairly important from a customer trust
> perspective. People look at the overall safety and make their own judgements.
> One person might decide that New York is safe and another will find that a
> horrible thought (for those who follow this arcane field, there was a big bust
> of a dodgy operator in NY some months back). Having said that, once a system
> is up and running, and is robust, it seems that moving the assets from one
> continent to another has not been a source of concern to many users.
> The issuer himself is pretty important. His physical location isn't so
> important -- everyone flies around these days -- but nobody has ever been able
> to gain trust in a system to date without reference to a real meatspace hook.
> And for good reason ... how do you take him to court? (And if you are
> thinking of extra-jurisdictional transactions, how do you beat him to a pulp
> with a baseball bat?)
There's another point: Suppose you come up with an ideal system which
preserves secrecy in the way you'd like. How are you going to convince
assorted government agencies (eg the US Treasury Dept and its kin in
other countries) that your System won't be used for money laundering,
terrorist financing, or other nefarious purposes?
[N.b. I am *not* trying to start a flame war here, and in particular I
am *not* accusing anyone on this mailing list of nefarious purposes.
Rather, I'm asking a serious question about the practicality of anonymous
(crypto-enabled) financial services in the 21st century, namely, will
governments be willing to allow them to operate?]
-- "Jonathan Thornburg -- remove -animal to reply" <jthorn at aei.mpg-zebra.de>
School of Mathematics, U of Southampton, England
"Washing one's hands of the conflict between the powerful and the
powerless means to side with the powerful, not to be neutral."
-- quote by Freire / poster by Oxfam
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