Alleged Silk Road owner busted in San Francisco

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The FBI complaint notes that the Silk Road owner went by "Dread Pirate Roberts," indicating a reference to The Princess Bride.

The government may have shut down, but that didn’t stop the feds from arresting Ross William Ulbricht, allegedly the owner of the Silk Road, an underground website that allows users to buy and sell drugs and other illicit items anonymously. The FBI also seized the equivalent of more than $3 million in Bitcoin, the cryptographic alternate currency used to make Silk Road transactions.

According to the Chronicle, Ulbrecht, who is 29 and lives in Hayes Valley, was arrested yesterday afternoon (Tue/1) at the Glen Park Library. He faces charges of narcotics trafficking conspiracy, computer hacking conspiracy and money laundering conspiracy. The FBI also alleges that he tried to hire a hit man to go after a Silk Road user who was threatening to release the identities of Silk Road users.

According to the complaint, Ulbricht operated under the alias “Dread Pirate Roberts.”

The complaint said the Silk Road had generated sales revenue totaling 9.5 million Bitcoins and collected commissions totaling 600,000 Bitcoins. "These figures are roughly equivalent today to approximately $1.2 billion in sales and approximately $80 million in commissions."

Finally, this profile of the Dread Pirate Roberts published in Forbes provides some insight about the person behind the Silk Road. Apparently, he’s a rebel with a cause:

“Roberts also has a political agenda: He sees himself not just as an enabler of street-corner pushers but also as a radical libertarian revolutionary carving out an anarchic digital space beyond the reach of the taxation and regulatory powers of the state – Julian Assange with a hypodermic needle. ‘We can’t stay silent forever. We have an important message, and the time is ripe for the world to hear it,’ says Roberts. ‘What we’re doing isn’t about scoring drugs or ‘sticking it to the man.’ It’s about standing up for our rights as human beings and refusing to submit when we’ve done no wrong. Silk Road is a vehicle for that message,’ he writes to me from somewhere in the Internet’s encrypted void. ‘All else is secondary.’”

Comments

Sure sounds like a real winner.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 02, 2013 @ 12:43 pm

Do you suppose that as he was being arrested he called out -

" I have a surprise for you!!!"

"What is it?"

" I am not left-handed!"

Posted by Guest on Oct. 02, 2013 @ 2:49 pm

Sounds to me like a Libertarian Hero.

All the Randians should be rallying around, raising bitcoins, posting on Indiegoggo or whatever, for his defense fund.

Posted by pete moss on Oct. 02, 2013 @ 3:46 pm

the side of law and order, whereas the left loves to be selective and opportunistic about which laws they obey.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 02, 2013 @ 4:10 pm

Libertarians are right wing?

The ones I know think of themselves as above all that tired leftie rightie crap.

Posted by pete moss on Oct. 02, 2013 @ 4:22 pm

Progressives and Randroids have more in common than libertarians and Randroids.

Posted by Matlock on Oct. 02, 2013 @ 5:39 pm

Neither 'Randoids' nor libertarians are rightists. At times they share some goals with traditional conservatives. At times they share the 'government IS the problem' view of corporate (i.e. fascist) neo-cons. At times both 'Randoids' and libertarians share very leftist and even anarchist ideals. Followers of Rand and libertarians are definitely each their own peculiar animal, (and I would argue are extremely similar to one another - however much Rand may have protested otherwise) and they definitely defy being pigeon-holed into one ideology that can be identified as left or right.

I would also add however, that their political and economic philosophy is fundamentally deeply flawed. They are basically attempting to take Enlightenment ideals of self reliance and self determination (which are an excellent personal compass for any given individual) and trying to shoehorn these very personal concepts into somehow becoming a set of public rules of -governance- of society and the economy; solely promoting individual freedom of action to the exclusion of all else.

It is clear that when such rules (or really anti-rules) of governance actually get set up, they quickly become horrendously abused by whoever collects the most wealth and influence to the detriment of almost all other members of society (the 99% as it were). So the idea that we should run a society and/or economic system based on Randian or libertarian concepts is then obviously revealed to be fundamentally unworkable. This is why the whole concept of a 'Libertarian Party' is completely oxymoronic and simply makes no sense whatsoever.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Oct. 02, 2013 @ 9:26 pm

nobody would take anything else you said seriously.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 03, 2013 @ 6:41 am

I equated NEO-conservatism with fascism.

Neo-Conservatism (and Neo-Liberalism as well) are essentially corporate controlled governance and economics. And a corporate controlled government perfectly fits Mussolini's very apt definition of fascism.

So I am calling out both Neo-Con Republicans and Neo-Liberal Dems as fascists, because that is exactly what they are, by definition.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Oct. 03, 2013 @ 5:00 pm

So it's democratic - the exact opposite of fascism or communism.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 03, 2013 @ 5:33 pm

Whether elected or not, a government controlled by corporations is fascist. Period.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Oct. 03, 2013 @ 6:11 pm

The fringe left loves Hugo Chavez and always blathers about him being elected by the people, to shut down opposition papers it seems.

Here's a good explanation on Brooksian style.

http://lesswrong.com/lw/nz/arguing_by_definition/

Posted by Matlock on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 1:12 am

Hugo Chavez's government did not renew only the open air broadcast license of only -one- TV station (and that station is still allowed to broadcast over cable and satellite) because that station was illegally manipulating media reports in order to promote a violent undemocratic coup in Venezuela.

If any media outlet in the U.S. were to start promote a violent undemocratic coup in our own country, the government would shut it down in a heart beat (including its cable and satellite broadcasts) and would be doing so legally.

Here's a report from Daily Kos about this and also the myth that Chavez supposedly stole an election (which is also false - The Carter Center monitored and ratified all of the Chavez elections) http://www.dailykos.com/story/2007/09/17/386591/-UPDATE-Exploding-the-my...

Here is another site that goes into more detail about the actual media landscape in Venezuela which is all over the political spectrum and actually majority anti Chavez.

http://mypolitikal.com/2012/12/25/the-myth-that-hugo-chavez-controls-ven...

Posted by Eric Brooks on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 6:50 am

You are saying that partisan news media that makes up things and is unreliable should be closed down?

And the reasoning behind not allowing them to use the publics airwaves...

The will to believe and rationalize.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 8:05 am

If he cited the BBC or the NY Times making the same claim, I might even bother to click on them.

I suppose if I got all my news and information only from extreme left-wing sources, and for long enough, I might hold extreme views and think them "normal". But most of us prefer to read what challenges us rather than what makes us feel comfortable.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 8:19 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 8:30 am

If "we, the people" want a government where corporations have a lot of influence, then what you think about that doesn't matter.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 6:56 am

What I think or don't think about this, we are discussing the definition of the word 'fascist'; a definition which quite accurately describes our corporate controlled government.

There is no ambiguity here.

Corporations now run our government. Therefore our government is, by definition, fascist.

2+2=4

Posted by Eric Brooks on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 7:15 am

so is not fascist, which implies a lack of democracy and power vested in a self-appointed oligarchy.

If the government we elect favors corporate interests then that is the decision of the people, because clearly we could vote in a different government if we didn't like that, and make someone like Nader president.

What you overlook is that Americans like corporations. They give us jobs, they provide services and products, and they create wealth and prosperity. Therefore we favor a government that favors corporations because that benefits us more than, say, having the Greens run the country which would destroy the economy, in the opinions of most voters.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 7:35 am

The definition of fascism is a government that is run by corporations. That definition has nothing to do with whether that government was 'elected' or not.

And in any case, this gets us into the deeper fact that corporations now also control our elections, almost all media reports about them, and even the machines that we now use to count the votes.

So our so called 'elections' in the U.S. are not, in fact, democratic elections any more...

Posted by Eric Brooks on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 7:47 am

believe would regard Congress as "fascist"?

1%? 0.1%? I'd guess less than that.

And if you are that far out of whack with "we, the people", then it is hardly surprising that you have a perversely outlandish political viewpoint.

The American voters like to elect pro-business politicians because they believe, as the old saying goes, that the business of America is business.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 8:00 am

And how many Germans thought of Nazi Germany as fascist when they were blithely going to the polls to vote Hitler and the Third Reich into place?

Posted by Eric Brooks on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 8:27 am

So do you think we are going to invade Poland and exterminate all Jews?

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 8:48 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 8:58 am

you should simply stop debating a conflict addicted idiot (when you see):

1) "LOL"

2) "ad hominem"

3) "ROTFL"

4) "OMG"

5) "OMFG"

6) "whiner" "whining" "whiners"

7) "liberal envy"

8) any criticism of your grammar

9) "owned" "pwned"

10) "Godwin's Law"

Posted by racer x on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 9:16 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 9:25 am

uses "ad hominem" when he realizes he is starting to lose a debate.

But at least you spelled "grammar" correctly this time.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 9:25 am
yup

and when they do that, they are being trolls, just like all of the other trolls

such as yourself

such a complete moron

that you actually responded to the post above with a grammar troll attack

were you trying to perfectly prove the point and make a complete idiot of yourself

or are you an even stupider asshole who simply incorrectly believes he is being adroitly amusing

Posted by racer x on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 9:52 am

Posts the same lame response to every post he disagrees with.

Yes you, troll barrier.

The "grammar" quip was partly because you spelled it "grammer" before and I was worried about how that might affect your credibility. But mostly, yes, it was a mostly a gentle dose of satire sent your way.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 11:05 am

to place your foot even deeper into your mouth

and your head even more fully up your ass

without even realizing you are doing it -

- you just did that, you know

if you scrutinize your last post closely enough and long enough, perhaps it will sink in to your tiny mind how you did so

Posted by racer x on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 2:19 pm

You are the biggest troll here and, in a perverse way, I think you are proud of that.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 2:36 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 2:22 pm

two from our invader forefathers.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 9:24 am

But you cannot blame the Romans for everything.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 9:37 am

the concepts of eugenics in fact, were born in the united states, not germany

Posted by racer x on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 9:47 am

Who'd have thunk it?

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 11:03 am
Posted by Matlock on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 11:00 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 9:00 am

The national socialists were a declining party when Hitler was appointed to form a coalition government with Hindenburg.

You need to read some real history, not the non sense you get from the daily Koss.

Posted by Matlock on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 4:58 pm
Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 5:12 pm

same difference

it was the intent of the voters that was being upheld and the voters had no clue that their government was fascist

this in the exactly same way that u.s. voters now suffer under an identical and incredibly dangerous naivete that their government is on the verge of becoming a fascist dictatorship

Posted by racer x on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 5:14 pm

result doesn't suit us?

So, when that happens, you can either whine about fascism or simply try to develop more convincing arguments next time.

Which option are you choosing, given that you are losing and your current strategy obviously isn't working?

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 5:22 pm

your little debate parries aren't going to matter much when the u.s. government becomes a totalitarian dictatorship

which it is clearly in danger of doing

as we type

get a clue man

Posted by racer x on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 5:35 pm

We have two competing theories here:

1) The people should decide what government they want even if you personally don't like it.

2) The people should accept that you know best

Gee. what should we do?

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 5:46 pm

(conversation has now shifted into troll mode)

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 6:07 pm
Posted by racer x on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 5:26 pm

Is that it?

Gee, why bother with democracy? We should consult with you for all decisions.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 5:45 pm

Hindenburg was the President who appointed Hitler Chancellor.

Posted by troll barrier on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 5:32 pm

just bumping a cornball citing of a 'scholar' who actually considered it a viable concept that McCarthyism was a political movement (instead of what it actually was; an incredibly dangerous moment of mass insanity along the lines of Nazism and the Salem witch trials)

Posted by troll barrier on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 7:45 pm

It's interesting how they always claim to be so correctly educated, when something doesn't fit their born again Christian world view they go into hysterics.

Posted by Matlock on Oct. 04, 2013 @ 9:31 pm

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