“Speaking at the recent Democratic Presidential candidate debates, Hillary Clinton continued to make it clear that, should she be elected, she’ll make it a campaign priority to wage war on encryption,” Karl Bode reports for DSLReports. “Clinton called for a solution to the ‘problem’ that is encryption, insisting that the government needs to develop a ‘Manhattan-like project’ that would bring the tech industries and government together to cure the menace that is encryption once and for all.”

I would hope that, given the extraordinary capacities that the tech community has and the legitimate needs and questions from law enforcement, that there could be a Manhattan-like project, something that would bring the government and the tech communities together to see they’re not adversaries, they’ve got to be partners. — Hillary Clinton

“The problem is that encryption is a tool that benefits everyone, so it’s not a problem that necessarily needs “solving,” Bode writes. ” So far, the government’s only solution has been to push for backdoors into devices and network hardware, something that companies like Google and Apple have been thankfully pushing back against since it makes everybody less safe.

Maybe the back door is the wrong door, and I understand what Apple and others are saying about that. I just think there’s got to be a way, and I would hope that our tech companies would work with government to figure that out. — Hillary Clinton

“Again,” Bode writes, “the problem is there is no door and you don’t really ‘figure encryption out’ …It’s a tool, and you can’t magically prevent only the ‘bad guys’ from using it.”

Read more in the full article here.

“You might imagine that Clinton — of all people — would be sensitive to the liberty interests of hiding personal communications from prying eyes. This is the public servant, after all, who as secretary of state maintained a private email server — with the benefit to Clinton of being able to vet and delete her own communications before they became a permanent part of the public record,” Tim Dickinson reports for RollingStone. “In this context, it was troubling Saturday evening to hear Clinton’s response to a question about the power of high technology to ensure privacy.”

Dickinson reports, “The reaction from America’s most famous privacy whistleblower was swift:”

“Clinton’s Big Brotherish proposal was as troubling as it was vague. And it seemed stubbornly resistant to the reality that America’s tech firms have shifted to powerful encryption — precisely in the wake of Snowden’s revelations — as a way to reassure consumers around the globe that they are not tools of the American surveillance state,” Dickinson reports. “More troubling: Clinton readily admitted she really didn’t understand her own proposal: ‘I don’t know enough about the technology, Martha, to be able to say what it is,’ Clinton added.”

Dickinson reports, “Clinton’s remarks earned her the mockery of one of the top disrupters in Silicon Valley, who found her call for a door that’s not a backdoor nonsensical: Marc Andreessen, the founder of Netscape and now a top venture capitalist taunted on Twitter, ‘Also we can create magical ponies who burp ice cream while we’re at it.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Sheesh. Have any of these highly confused candidates — from both major U.S. parties* — ever read a little book called “1984?” If so, they failed to understand it.

Good God, sometimes we think The Idiocracy is upon us and we’re just doomed, no matter what.

*Look at some of the other candidates, again from both parties; a couple are actually good on privacy and protecting citizens’ rights.

Here’s someone who gets it:

At Apple, your trust means everything to us. That’s why we respect your privacy and protect it with strong encryption, plus strict policies that govern how all data is handled.

Security and privacy are fundamental to the design of all our hardware, software, and services, including iCloud and new services like Apple Pay. And we continue to make improvements. Two-step verification, which we encourage all our customers to use, in addition to protecting your Apple ID account information, now also protects all of the data you store and keep up to date with iCloud.

We believe in telling you up front exactly what’s going to happen to your personal information and asking for your permission before you share it with us. And if you change your mind later, we make it easy to stop sharing with us. Every Apple product is designed around those principles. When we do ask to use your data, it’s to provide you with a better user experience.

We’re publishing this website to explain how we handle your personal information, what we do and don’t collect, and why. We’re going to make sure you get updates here about privacy at Apple at least once a year and whenever there are significant changes to our policies.

A few years ago, users of Internet services began to realize that when an online service is free, you’re not the customer. You’re the product. But at Apple, we believe a great customer experience shouldn’t come at the expense of your privacy.

Our business model is very straightforward: We sell great products. We don’t build a profile based on your email content or web browsing habits to sell to advertisers. We don’t “monetize” the information you store on your iPhone or in iCloud. And we don’t read your email or your messages to get information to market to you. Our software and services are designed to make our devices better. Plain and simple.

One very small part of our business does serve advertisers, and that’s iAd. We built an advertising network because some app developers depend on that business model, and we want to support them as well as a free iTunes Radio service. iAd sticks to the same privacy policy that applies to every other Apple product. It doesn’t get data from Health and HomeKit, Maps, Siri, iMessage, your call history, or any iCloud service like Contacts or Mail, and you can always just opt out altogether.

Finally, I want to be absolutely clear that we have never worked with any government agency from any country to create a backdoor in any of our products or services. We have also never allowed access to our servers. And we never will.

Our commitment to protecting your privacy comes from a deep respect for our customers. We know that your trust doesn’t come easy. That’s why we have and always will work as hard as we can to earn and keep it. — Apple CEO Tim Cook

Apple’s Privacy webpages are here.

SEE ALSO:
Apple launches counteroffensive against UK’s proposed new surveillance law – December 21, 2015
Manhattan DA fires back after Apple CEO Cook defends stance on encryption – December 21, 2015
Apple CEO Tim Cook opposes government back door to encryption – December 21, 2015
Donald Trump: To stop ISIS recruiting, maybe we should be talking to Bill Gates about ‘closing that Internet up in some way’ – December 21, 2015
Hillary Clinton: We need to put Silicon Valley tech firms to ‘work at disrupting ISIS’ – December 7, 2015
Do not let the government snoops weaken encryption – November 4, 2015
Tim Cook attacks Google, U.S. federal government over right to privacy abuses – June 3, 2015
Apple CEO Tim Cook advocates privacy, says terrorists should be ‘eliminated’ – February 27, 2015
Apple’s Tim Cook warns of ‘dire consequences’ of sacrificing privacy for security – February 13, 2015
Apple’s iPhone encryption is a godsend, even if government snoops and cops hate it – October 8, 2014
Short-timer U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder blasts Apple for protecting users’ privacy against government overreach – September 30, 2014
FBI blasts Apple for protective users’ privacy by locking government, police out of iPhones and iPads – September 25, 2014
Apple thinks different about privacy – September 23, 2014
Apple CEO Tim Cook ups privacy to new level, takes direct swipe at Google – September 18, 2014
Apple will no longer unlock most iPhones, iPads for government, police – even with search warrants – September 18, 2014
Would you trade privacy for national security? Most Americans wouldn’t – August 6, 2014
Apple begins encrypting iCloud email sent between providers – July 15, 2014
Obama administration demands master encryption keys from firms in order to conduct electronic surveillance against Internet users – July 24, 2013
U.S. NSA seeks to build quantum computer to crack most types of encryption – January 3, 2014
Apple’s iMessage encryption trips up U.S. feds’ surveillance – April 4, 2013

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “David E.” for the heads up.]