‘But if we fail, then the whole world, including the United States, including all that we have known and cared for, will sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age, made more sinister, and perhaps more protracted, by the lights of perverted science.’
Today is the 10th of July, 2015, which is 75 years after the now infamous ‘battle of Britain’; the fight that kept Hitler’s Nazis out of our British Isles. Today, flags are being raised, medals being pinned, and salutes being served. It’s a day of national pride, and unity, to celebrate the brave people who fought for our freedom and liberty. As a nation, we united to stand against the Nazis, to protect our freedom to express ourselves in our beliefs, and our culture. We did not stand by and allow such a tyrannical and vicious machine dictate to us how we should act, think or feel. That was 75 years ago today, and yet I find myself reading today that our freedoms are once again threatened by tyrannous dictatorship. Sir Winston Churchill famously said ‘Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.’ To oppose this move of privacy destruction, is to become the ‘few’.
This threat is not German. The threat to our liberties and freedoms is not one that is attempting to invade this country, because this threat is already here, and what’s worse, is that millions of people in this once great nation actually voiced that they wanted this idiot to call the shots. In fact, this man has been systematically destroying this country from the inside-out, since 2010. Of course, I’m speaking of ‘The Right Honourable Dastardly’ David William Donald Cameron.
This is a man so warped, that even though he is a man who mourns the death of his son, he chooses to attack the most vulnerable and weak people, who are reliant on support from the state, for their independence, care and dignity. The level of contempt displayed by this man and his goons, is nothing short of hate-crime. At the same time, he’s proven to be a dab-hand at making sure the people who count – the ones with more money than heart – are well looked after. This man harps on about the atrocities committed by a group who are pissed off at the actions of this government and that of it’s big brother, good ‘ole Uncle Sam, and yet at the same time, he’s ensuring that those perpetrators of hate and segregation are armed to the teeth, with the latests in military hardware. He spits in the face of the victims of these groups, calling for a show of respect, by way of shutting up for 1 minute, to ‘mourn’ those fallen, and yet supplies those same groups with the tools they need to continue.
His latest infraction, brought to our attention some 6 weeks ago, has been his ‘Snooper’s charter’, officially titled the ‘Draft Communications Data Bill’. This legislation, proposed by the same genius who brought you theories like ‘anybody suspected of terrorist activity should have their passport confiscated’, is a draft which would allow – and some have argued that it would require – internet service providers and mobile phone companies, to maintain records of each user’s internet browsing activity, email correspondence, voice calls, internet gaming, and mobile phone messaging services and to store the records for 12 months!
Let’s look at some facts about this proposed legislation, and the surrounding madness.
Retention of email and telephone contact data for this time is already required by the Data Retention Regulations 2014.
This government is introducing massive austerity measures which will drastically effect the lives of millions of vulnerable people, to save £12bn.
The anticipated cost of the Communications Data Bill is said to be £1.8bn.
Interception Modernisation Programme is what we were calling this bill in 2008. It was an initiative to extend the governments capabilities for ‘lawful’ interception and storage of communications data. It was widely reported that the IMP’s eventual goal ‘was’ to store details of all UK communications in a central database.
The plans were being made to collect data on all phone calls, emails, chat room discussion and web-browsing habits.
These proposal were expected to be included in the Communications Data Bill 2008.
The ‘giant database’ would include telephone numbers dialled, the websites visited and addresses to which emails are sent, ‘but not the content of emails of telephone conversations.’
The coalition agreement in 2010 committed to ending the storing of email and Internet records ‘without good reason’.
The bill would create a wide ranging power to compel any ‘communications service provider’ to collect and retain additional information about their users.
Under the new bill, any organisation that interacts with users and produces or transmits electronic communications could be compelled to collect and retain information about them, even if it is entirely irrelevant to their business needs.
The BBC reported that the Home Office stressed that the bill was intended for targeted surveillance rather than “fishing expeditions”, but quoted opponent Nick Pickles, director of Big Brother Watch: “The filtering provisions are so broadly worded and so poorly drafted that it could allow mining of all the data collected, without any requirement for personal information, which is the very definition of a fishing trip.”
The bill would change the authorisations given to police officers under RIPA. Instead of individual data requests being granted by a senior officer, the senior officer would grant powers once a month to investigating officers to conduct data requests on a topic they were investigating.
What this means to the likes of the general public, is that encryption is to be outlawed.
Right now, services like WhatsApp, Snapchat, iMessage and many others, use encryption to scramble the information sent between users. Under this proposed legislation, that would be illegal.
This bill will make it illegal for you to have a private, encrypted conversation with anyone. You’ll be breaking the law for trying to have a private conversation.
It hasn’t made it through to law yet, but it’s looking more and more likely, given the statements from David.
“In our country, do we want to allow a means of communication between people which […] we cannot read?”
Yes David. We want to be able to have private conversations, amongst ourselves, without you being able to eavesdrop.
“It is to wage war, by sea, land and air, with all our might and with all the strength that God can give us; to wage ware against a monstrous tyranny, never surpassed in the dark lamentable catalogue of human crime. That is our policy.”
-Sir Winston Churchill, to the House of Commons on 13th May 1940, in his first address as the newly appointed Prime Minister..