Fwd: It's time for PGP to die.

Robert J. Hansen rjh at sixdemonbag.org
Tue Aug 19 23:05:23 CEST 2014

> Not coercion?

Nope.  That's a trade.

Passphrase coercion is like so: "you will produce the passphrase, or you
will sit in jail until you decide to produce the passphrase, and we're
just fine if you sit in there the rest of your natural life, and once we
get the passphrase then we'll decide whether we want to prosecute you
further, and if we do then your time sitting in jail while deciding to
cough up the passphrase won't count against whatever prison term you
ultimately get."

What the prosecutor is offering there is, "you will plead guilty to
lesser charges, but I'm only willing to do this if you're willing to
show me the full extent of your illegal activities, so cough up the
passphrase so I can verify it for myself."

When you're facing coercion, you're not getting anything out of the
trade.  When you agree to something as part of a plea agreement, you do.
Or maybe you think that you should be allowed to get a plea deal just
by showing up, without cooperating with the State in any way?

> BTW what's an Alford?


> So is hiding exculpatory evidence. Of course prosecutors would never
> do such a thing, right?....right?

The vast majority of prosecutors would not.  Some would, and in such
cases I think the doctrine of prosecutorial immunity should be waived.

Snark is not serious argument.

> There are a bunch more.

So what?  There are a bunch of prosecutors.  If even 1% of prosecutors
are corrupt -- which would make them on balance a bunch of saints by the
standards of the rest of society -- that's still a large number.  The
fact there are a large number of abuses is kind of unsurprising given a
country with over 300 million people.  It's the law of large numbers:
one-in-a-million events literally happen thousands of times a day.

>> Don't confuse "Law & Order" re-runs with real life.
> Give me some credit, pal.

You're the one who didn't know what an Alford plea was.  Just sayin'.

Please note: I'm not saying prosecutorial abuse doesn't happen, that
it's not a problem, or that we haven't vastly overcriminalized our civil
life.  But this paranoid fantasy some people have going, where they
believe *every* prosecutor is corrupt... that's just childish.

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