The railroading of Ross Ulbricht, whose only crime was to host a website that made buying and selling illicit drugs safer, was sentenced to life in prison so he would serve as an example to anybody else thinking of doing the same. But silencing Ulbricht wasn’t enough. Now the state is moving to silence people who believed the charges and sentence were absurd:
The United States Department of Justice is using federal grand jury subpoenas to identify anonymous commenters engaged in typical internet bluster and hyperbole in connection with the Silk Road prosecution. DOJ is targeting Reason.com, a leading libertarian website whose clever writing is eclipsed only by the blowhard stupidity of its commenting peanut gallery.
Why is the government using its vast power to identify these obnoxious asshats, and not the other tens of thousands who plague the internet?
Because these twerps mouthed off about a judge.
Freedom of speech only exists so long as you don’t say something that the state disagrees with. Mind you, some of the commenters said some shitty things. Some may even consider them threats if not for the fact they were posted online, which is the capital of impotent rage. In fact we know the state doesn’t usually care about threatening language as can be seen by it’s completely lack of action against the Gamer Gate community. But when such speech is directed at a holy robed one the rules change and names must be obtained!
This is why, more than ever, tools for preserving anonymity are necessary. If you’re going to comment about one of the state’s misdeeds it would be wise to do so through Tor. Failing to do so could result in you facing charges for posting offensive comments.