Public bodies used “anti-terrorism” laws to make over half a million requests for information like phone and internet records last year.
In 2006 only 350,000 requests for information were made by public bodies, in 2007 that had risen to 519,000.
The legislation that lets public bodies such as local councils get this information and carry out surveillence is the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) which was brought in to help tackle serious and organised crime and terrorism. Since then it has predictably degenerated into a free for all with councils using it to mount surveillence operations on people suspected of not picking up dog shit and parents they suspect of lying about being in a school catchment area.
And while all this happens we are told to trust the state with these powers. We are told that we don’t need to worry that the British government now has the power to detain somebody for a month and a half without charge on suspicion of terrorist offences because it’ll only be used in extreme circumstances and only for real terrorist offences, not the multitude of offences under the Terrorism Act that aren’t terrorism but are covered by the internment law.
We are told not to worry about having more CCTV than any other country in the world because it’s just for our protection, to keep our streets safe. But CCTV is now being used to prosecute motorists for parking offences without anyone having to put a ticket on the vehicle and potentially weeks after the alleged offence has occured when the driver will have forgotten what the circumstances were.
The police routinely collect fingerprints and DNA samples of everyone they interview and keep those details forever. The law had to be changed to allow them to do this because they illegally kept details for hundreds of thousands of innocent people that they had obtained under a law that required them to remove the details if the subject was innocent.
We are all to be required to submit our biometric data – fingerprints, iris scans, DNA – to a centralised database so that the British government can use ID cards to track our movements. Don’t worry about the fact that fingerprints and iris scans can be falsified very easily if you wanted to put in the effort or that you can buy card readers off the internet now that will read an ID card. Don’t worry about the fact that you can buy a card reader off eBay that will read the contents of the ID chip on a passport from inside a sealed envelope.
Just how fucking stupid do you have to be to believe that all this is for our own good, for our protection? What kind of a retard genuinely believes that every new law that infringes civil liberties won’t be abused from the day it becomes law?
We are the most illiberal, spied-on state on the planet yet we let the power-mad despots running the country pass more and more of these laws. We can’t even go to London and protest about it any more because the police will shove cameras in our faces and arrest us for terrorist offences!
Technorati Tags: RIPA, Police State