[Cryptography] Cryptography is not a science currently

Henry Baker hbaker1 at pipeline.com
Tue Dec 8 10:00:40 EST 2015

At 05:32 PM 12/7/2015, ianG wrote:
>There is one rule in spying that makes the difference between democracy and dictatorship:
>The charter to break the law - which spying completely is because it is against the law in every other country - must never be used on ones own people.
>That is the line in the sand that must never be crossed.
>NSA crossed it.
>(And so did every one of the 19 US agencies that cooperated with the bounty - but the responsibility ultimately lies in the hands of those with the charter to break the law.)

The single truth about human politics that has been distilled from 100,000 years of experience:

If the only thing constraining a leader's behavior is his/her own ethics/loyalty/duty (whatever you want to call this *internal* constraint), then that political society is doomed, and quickly.

Any student of ancient Rome knows that when Pompey Magnus had the opportunity to become emperor, but didn't follow up, Julius Caesar was watching carefully; Julius realized that the only thing stopping Pompey was Pompey himself.  Julius didn't make the same "mistake" when he had the chance; he went ahead and assumed all power.  Yes, the Senate -- striking out like a cornered animal -- killed him in a vain attempt to re-establish a Republic, but the Rubicon (both real & virtual) had already been crossed.  Once Julius Caesar had shown how it could be done, the next emperor was inevitable.

The Founding Fathers of the U.S. knew all of this, and attempted to weaken the Executive and strengthen the Congress to make it more difficult for the Executive to become emperor.  In particular, Congress was supposed to have the power of the purse and the sole ability to declare war.  With the latest round of Executive Orders and the complete nonfeasance of Congress's duties wrt the AUMF (the authority to go to war after 9/11), it has become obvious to every Presidential wannabe that all of the external constraints have now been removed.

Bread and circuses have once again proved more powerful than liberty.  

Not to be outdone, the French have just ditched one of the 3 legs of their stool; "égalité, fraternité" somehow doesn't have the same ring !

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