Iain Dale’s piece in The Guardian is one of the politest condemnations of a “government” that I have seen. Its obsession with control and monitoring of private citizens “justified” by the argument “we are protecting you from terrorism” is one of the most offensive aspects of its time in power.
Of the 46 databases assessed in this report only six are given the green light. That is, only six are found to have a proper legal basis for any privacy intrusions and are proportionate and necessary in a democratic society. Nearly twice as many are almost certainly illegal under human rights or data protection law and should be scrapped or substantially redesigned, while the remaining 29 databases have significant problems and should be subject to an independent review.
Let’s also talk about the Interception Modernisation Programme. That will record details of every phone call and every text message sent. Who is going to review all the information your “government” wants to keep? Why does your “government” want to keep details of every phone call and e-mail I, a citizen without criminal convictions, send and receive? What in my life could possibly be of interest to you and your colleagues? That I think for myself and find the surveillance and database states offensive? Or that I’m looking for work because of your “government’s” failures with the economy? How long before my front door gets kicked in at 2am and I get dragged off with a black bag over my head, never to be seen again?
In the eyes of this Labour “government” we are all criminals, they just haven’t yet written a law to criminalise what we do. They will soon enough if given a chance. Censorship. The restriction of free speech. The merciless and continuing invasion of privacy. The desire to lock you up on hearsay or about something you may have seen but do not possess so have no evidence to prove that charge. The imposition of compulsory identification documents. The desire to monitor every website visited, e-mail sent, phone call made and e-mail sent. The overwhleming desire to control every aspect of our lives isn’t the sign of a democratic goverment which exists to serve its citizens, it is the sign of a dictatorship intent on imposing its will on the citizens.
And that’s the kind of thing the UK “government” wants to implement here. This is the same government which loses personal data repeatedly – and those are only the reports we get to hear about.