[tor-philosophy] Protecting rights.

Jeff Harrington jeff at parnasse.com
Wed Feb 28 18:53:53 UTC 2007

Everything is relative - and the quest for purity in a perfect
expression of a rights-based policy is not only impossible, but
likely to provoke unintended consequences. 

Common sense must prevail, not out of context quotations.  Thomas
Paine would not for a second consider the fact that his concept of liberty
might encompass the right to hide torture and rape.  That would be

True libertarians are PRACTICAL libertarians. 


Michael_google gmail_Gersten wrote:
> (Forgive the large quoting; this is going into a different thread, and
> I wanted to keep the context of the discussion).
> Background: Thomas Paine:  "He that would make his own liberty secure,
> must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this
> duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself. " ~
> Thomas Paine, Dissertation on First Principles of Government, December
> 23, 1791
> Tor is fundamentally about giving people some liberty, specifically
> protecting freedom of speech when what you say is at odds with, or
> against, the views of the majority and/or the government, and the
> right to privacy, given the ease of third parties  (ad sites) to track
> you, and governments to grab data from these companies.
> On 2/28/07, Thomas M. Jett <free_dixie at dixie-net.com> wrote:
>> Hash: SHA512
>> Michael_google gmail_Gersten wrote:
>> > I'm doing a LOT of trimming on this reply.
>> >
>> >>  Yes, and this is, given the limits of technology, best left to the
>> >>  realm of The Good Lord to handle ( the rules are in The Bible if
>> only
>> >>  people would abide by them.  There is something that the vast
>> >> majority
>> >>  of people fail to take into consideration, and that is the fact that
>> >>  evil exists in this world.  It does, and while we cannot endorse it,
>> >>  or go along with it, we do have to tolerate it in as much as we
>> >> cannot
>> >>  prevent it without actually hurting ourselves in the process
>> >>  (reference the quote of Thomas Paine).
>> >
>> > Please, take a second look at this statement. I'm not taking this out
>> > of context.
>> I'm taking a second look at it, and a third and forth ect... etc...
>> despite the fact that I've been up far too long.
>> >
>> > Yes, we cannot prevent someone else's ability to make a choice,
>> > without that coming back and restricting our choices. Absolutely.
>> Agreed
>> >
>> > You have chosen to say "The Bible has the rules of The Good Lord".
>> > That's your choice.
>> Yes, that is correct.
>> >
>> > You are choosing to say all of the following:
>> > 1. The God of Abraham is Lord.
>> > 2. The God of Abraham is God.
>> > 3. The God of Abraham is Good. (Job, Jonah, and Ester come to mind.)
>> > 4. The rules given to the generations from Abraham to Moses still
>> > apply today.
>> > 5. The guidelines and interpretations of those, as expressed by
>> > prophets up til about 200 BC (old testament), or up til about 100 AD
>> > (new testament), or by male rulers who kicked women out of the ruling
>> > class through about 400 AD (Roman catholic church), or ..., are in
>> > fact valid and appropriate in 2010 AD.
>> Quiet correct, except that  you do not take into consideration that
>> since the birth of Christ the world is under a new covenant, and the
>> old covenant ( the one in effect B.C. while still a good general
>> guideline is not literally God's Law.
>> > 6. Any advice / prophets / instructions given to anyone else are
>> > invalid. (See: Muslim, Taoist, etc).
>> While I recognize that these philosophies may have something to
>> contribute to understanding human morality and nature, and did the
>> pagan Greek's, I do not recognize them as religions.  The only
>> authority a Christian can recognize is the authority of God.
> First, and minor technical, Muslim is religion. The God of Muslims is
> the same God of Abraham. The question is, do you follow the second son
> of the second son (Abraham -> Issac -> Jacob), or do you follow the
> other family branch.
> Mohammad, as I understand, has the same place in their religion as
> Moses or Jesus has in Judaism -- a prophet -- a person, wise, able to
> spot and point out problems with the status quo, with some inspiration
> from God. (Your definition may vary).
> Second, and major: As soon as you say that "X is the only authority I
> can recognize", what happens? And why is this relevant to Tor?
> Look at countries, and governments, historically.
> The authority that I recognize is the constitution of the United
> States, plus any government that is upholding that, along with the
> common-law rights of the Magna Carta, and the statute rights, by
> approved treaty, of the united nation's accord on basic human rights.
> I might have the titles of those slightly off, doesn't matter.
> The view that you express has historically lead to governments that
> try to restrict people's freedom of speech, as well as governments
> that try to track the opposition and eliminate them.
> Both of these are what Tor is (a weak, but first step) protecting
> against.
> Do you have the right to say "I only believe in the authority of God,
> as redefined by Jesus"? Sure. Do you have the right to say what is, or
> is not, God; what is, or is not, God's laws; what is, or is not, a
> religion? Sure.
> But you don't have the right to tell others that they are wrong. You
> have the right to say that you disagree with them.
> And when governments start saying "You are wrong", that is when we
> need Tor to already be in large use.
> Remember: If the only people using Tor are those with something to
> hide, then the people using Tor can be easily rounded up, and charged
> with "Crimes against the state".
> I have nothing significant to hide; I use the name "Keybounce" all
> over the internet.
> But it is precisely because the people who need to hide need noise to
> hide in that I use Tor.
> (And I do hide. If you look at the first and last name on this email
> account, you'll see that I'm doing a basic "protection against
> database join" from companies merging and joining databases into a
> large collection. Overall, that's minor.)
> (It is relatively easy for a government sized attack to attack tor.
> They have the resources to put in enough nodes to be 10-15% of the
> network; they can force ISP's (phone companies and cable companies) to
> filter packets and send things that match XXX to them for analysis;
> they can track who the major nodes are, and require 100% packet
> duplication from them from the ISP's. The solution is to make sure
> that the total volume on Tor is really, really large.)

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