Re: Actually, I think he is right
> I've learned from firsthand experience that edge cases don't stay edge cases and that truth is stranger than fiction (see Edward Snowden).
OK, so what happens when someone has a super-encrypted message which can save the world if it's delivered to the right person, but he's arrested by an enemy state who have the back-door keys to the encryption protocol?
See, typing nonsense scenarios doesn't help an argument. What helps is to look at the history of how things have actually happened and, very roughly, it has gone like this:
1. Government can snoop on specific people, with a court order.
2. Communications go digital. US government (imitated by many others) discovers it can freely ignore law and intercept all communications of everyone, everywhere.
3. Snowdon leaks reveal extent of illegal government spying. Government does nothing about it.
4. Tech companies and consumers move to apps and platforms which encrypt communications by default. Back to step 2 (via bugs, covert software, and hardware attacks against specific targets)
Most likely, any attempt at banning encryption will be entirely unworkable. Either in the physical sense (and it will be ignored), or the legal sense (and courts will rule against it).
Additionally, people who are going to commit attacks still will, either using unencrypted platforms (as per the Paris attacks, which were discussed and coordinated over SMS) or, if they are going to take serious planning (eg 9/11 attacks), over proper secured channels. Or even in person.