Re: Q: How is the government ever going to convict bad guys without access to encryption?
"The problems come when the materials involved in a crime are not themselves illegal until the crime has been committed."
Excuse me, but why is this a "problem"? Do you not believe in the presumption of innocence?
As one example, there's more than enough diesel and fertilizer in my garage to make a hefty boom, but they're both there for legitimate purposes. Should I be arrested?
Somewhere in my basement is several pounds of silver powder. It was recovered from photographic solution, and kept because: silver! It can make a big boom too. Should I be arrested?
A rough estimate of my equipment inventory has me probably having about 100F worth of capacitors here. Those can...
Off the top of my head I can make 13 different nerve agents from the household cleaning products in my house. I have more than enough equipment to make rail guns, coil guns, hell, if I put my mind to it I could build a fairly bitchin' hybrid particle accelerator that would put out a mighty bang!
Hell I can probably bind the diesel to (or for that matter, the silver powder) and create a thermobaric device if I put my mind to it. $Deity only know what the yield on that thing would be.
These (and more!) are all possible. I have the necessary components and the requisite knowledge. I, and millions more who studied basic sciences and live in middle-class western homes. You live every day of your life surrounded by people with the materials and skill to do major damage. You aren't dead yet.
Will you lock us all up? Or do we get to retain the presumption of innocence?