9/05/2009

09-05-09 - Brownstripe Fail

DSLReports speed test : 68 kbps down, 657 ms latency.

I think I actually might be better off with a cell network internet card for my laptop. It would be nice if it was easier to multiplex bandwidth. Then I could just keep the cable, get DSL, get a cell card, and send my traffic over all of them. I might actually have decent speed and reliability that way; having two connections seems like a nice protection in general.


I had a dream last night that I killed a man and decided to flee the country rather than face prison. It's actually a pretty common dream of mine; I usually dream that some guy hurts my girl and I beat him up and get carried away and wind up sticking my thumbs through his eyeballs. I'm not quite sure if it's a nightmare or a fantasy; I feel pretty horrified during the killing part but then kind of exhilerated about having to go on the lam .

Anyway, last night for the first time it occurred to me that it might not be so easy any more because of all the improved tracking post 9/11. It used to be trivial to drive across the border to Mexico, and then you could easily disappear into Central America and never return, but now they have the enhanced driver's license requirements - I wonder if they actually have the computer systems coordinated so that they can scan the bar codes at the border and see that you're out on bail and not let you cross ?

The other big issue is getting your money out of the banks. Again before 9/11 that used to be pretty trivial because law enforcement had no easy direct connection to banks, they would only freeze assets in extreme high profile cases. Now banks are doing way more reporting of large transactions. Most people know that banks report any transaction over $10k. That's actually been revised down to $3k, and the feds are pushing banks harder to examine and report suspicious transactions. I know this has given poker players some annoyance.

Even if you can get your money out, you don't really want to be walking around Central America with several hundred thousand dollars in cash. Again if you're on the run on bail, presumably American Express would stop cashing your traveller's cheques, though I doubt they'd actually get to that in practice. If you have a lot of money, you should of course keep a few gold bars in a safe deposit box in Antigua or some place. I guess a simpler compromise would be to keep one in your house and cross the border with it, but then you still have to deal with selling it and then having a mess of cash.

It seems to me that if you were a perpetrator of massive fraud like a Bernie Madoff or a Ken Lay or whatever, one of the first things you should take care of is getting yourself set up with some fake identities , a mix of various types of cash, some accounts in the fake person's name, so that when you finally get caught you can easily slip away.

I hate the idea of not being able to slip away and start over and change your identity. Not that I actually think I ever will, but feeling like you couldn't if you needed to is horrible.

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