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Friday, April 11, 2014

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Chanson de Roland

Dear Mr. Jenkins: Once again you provide us with important information about threats to our privacy and security. And you provide useful information about what we can do to mitigate this particular threat, at least going forward. That is, we can insist that the websites, which we use, patch their vulnerability, if any, to Heartbleed, and then change our passwords.

But the larger problem is something that no one wants to admits, because of the vast sums of profit and vast sectors of our economy and other economies, which are at stake: The Internet isn't secure; financial transactions on the Internet are not secure; though we have a reasonable expectation of privacy on at least certain of our Internet communications and transactions, none of those communications and transactions are secure; and so we don't have any privacy and/or security on the Internet.

I now have to change some passwords, but I have no beliefs that those changed passwords will make my communications and transaction on the Internet private or secure, even though my confidential communications and transactions should be both private and secure and even though I have a right and reasonable expectation that they will be private and secure.

So the secret is out: The Internet isn't private; it is not secure, and not only are ordinary people powerless to do anything about it; large firm, such as banks, brokerages, retailers, law firms, news organizations etc., are also powerless to do anything about it.

And why don't we have privacy and security? Well, aside from the technical flaws that arise in any computer system, another more powerful and the essential cause of the failure of privacy and security on the Internet is a witches' brew of: the prerogatives and security needs of empire; the profitability of dishonoring our privacy so that firms can exploit our personal information, and the willingness of government, which is supposed to be our government, in all of its branches to protect the protect and abet the imperial state's security needs and the profitability of firms who exploit our privacy.

That witches brew may well lead to governments and firms at least exploiting, if not creating, security flaws for their own purposes and profit, but the greater dangers are the immoral and harmful acts, which the state, the United States, has legalized. We, for example, have no property rights in our personal information; private firms, for the sake of their profits, set what can only be described as legalized malware on our computing devices; governments conduct massive surveillance with no other justification than that they can and that its good to know what everyone is thinking and doing, which, in the case of the U.S. government, is a violation of the U.S. Const.; people are presented with and coerced into contracts, which they can’t understand and/or which they aren’t given time and resources to review and understand, on pain of being denied needed goods and/or services, and the courts, both state and federal, have stood mute and permitted these violation of peoples rights.

Mr. Jenkins, thanks for letting us know what's going on.

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