[tor-teachers] tor teachers -- politics

Jacob Appelbaum jacob at appelbaum.net
Tue Oct 20 10:55:01 UTC 2015

Dear Nathan and everyone,

> I think as a community of teachers and trainers, we'll have to all be
> open to the fact that we are coming from very different backgrounds, and
> working with very different communities. I don't think anyone is
> actively trying to inject their own personal "P" politics into the list,
> but I am sure many kinds of politics will come up, as an aspect of
> empowering users who are working against a system that seeks to
> disempower them.

I'm totally on board with everything you've said excluding the very
last bit here. Forgive me for going down the rabbit hole with you.

We're not working against any system directly. Our efforts are not
mere pushback. Sure, we hope to stop surveillance and censorship
systems from harming Tor users. The crux here isn't just about
protesting "the man" or a specific political party or something along
those lines. Rather we've built an alternative and we're teaching
people how to utilize it in their lives.

The result is of course political and there is a question of how the
new system embodies certain political ideals. In our new system we
build on the radical politics of IP networking, we have a right to
form and hold ideas without interference, we have a right to free
speech and a right to read, we have anonymity of various kinds. We
have this as an intentional outcome of strong cryptography where
everyone is able to run or to use this new infrastructure. That isn't
a matter of just being against a system, it is about iterating and
changing the current systems, while also providing alternatives that
coexist and which are capable of replacing older, less autonomy
respecting, systems which are oppressive.

All the best,

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