They just don’t give up!! Cameron and his cronies have been desperate to give more surveillance powers to security services since his government came to power.
The shambles that was the Data Communications Bill was rejected because of its vague and intrusive nature which would have given the government unprecedented powers to spy on UK citizens.
Since the failure of the bill the government has tried to gain more power through smoke and mirrors tactics – even trying stealth legislation – but have so far failed.
The European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled in April that existing powers requiring that phone and internet companies retain communications data – when and who their customers called, texted and emailed but not what was said – for a 12 month period was unlawful.
The ‘emergency’ Data Retention and Investigation Powers Bill was approved by a special Cabinet meeting today and announced at a rare joint press conference by Mr Cameron and Mr Clegg. It will be rushed through Parliament before the summer recess. It will have a “sunset clause” under which it will have to be renewed after two years. During that period, there will be a review of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act, which has been criticised for allowing excessive surveillance.
Although the Labour Opposition is backing the Bill, some MPs are unhappy about the way it is being rushed through without a full debate. Tom Watson, the Labour MP, said he would vote against some aspects of the measure. He said the Government was aware of the ECJ ruling six weeks ago but had waited until the dying days of Parliament to railroad it through. “It is ramping up the rhetoric on it. This is a stitch-up and a secret deal between the three parties,” he said.
Jim Killock, executive director of the Open Rights Group, accused the Government of “using the threat of terrorism as an excuse” for the new law. He said: “Not only will the proposed legislation infringe our right to privacy, it will also set a dangerous precedent where the Government simply re-legislates every time it disagrees with a decision by the ECJ. The ruling still stands and these new plans may actually increase the amount of our personal data that is retained by ISPs, further infringing on our right to privacy. Blanket surveillance needs to end. That is what the court has said.” (Source: The Independent).
The FACT is that the security services do not need new powers.
There are already powers in place which allow the security services to access the same information WITH A WARRANT!
What the new legislation will do is take out one of the checks and balances in place to ensure any access to our personal data is necessary for the investigation being conducted, AND to prevent the kind of mass surveillance the government want to introduce.
As we have discovered through the revelations of Edward Snowden, GCHQ and the US intelligence services have already been conducting surveillance on a huge scale by using loopholes in current reciprocal arrangements and legislation.
Introduction of this kind of legislation is a stepping stone to a complete ‘big brother’ fascist state.
No doubt the next great big con will be to have us all ‘chipped’ like dogs so our every move and transaction can be monitored by the government. If you don’t think it will happen think again. It is already happening across the world (particularly in the United States) where experiments are taking place to discover how to best use the technology for human monitoring.
Perhaps you think you have nothing to fear from being monitored or chipped. Well you do because it will be used to shape society for the good of the mega-powerful of this world – not for the safety of citizens.
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