What the government were giving with one hand, by way of changes such as improved personal tax allowances, they were taking away with changes such as increased fuel duty and more. Hiding the negatives of the budget amongst frothy words simply shows how stupid this government think UK people are and how foolish said government are in reality.
Still at least this blogger can write about this on a fairly free Internet right now. Proposals released on, appropriately enough April Fool's day 2012 could change all of this.
As reported yesterday the UK government hope to announce proposals in this year's Queen's Speech which will infringe severely on the freedom of its citizens online. The reason for the changes has been stated as to protect the country from terrorism. Canada a short while ago were considering similar changes all in the name of catching paedophiles. In truth though most western governments love to applaud Internet freedom in countries in the Middle East and in China but hate it in their own back yard.
David Davies, Conservative MP, yesterday said that the proposed changes were, "an unnecessary extension of the ability of the state to snoop on ordinary people". Human Rights and Civil Liberty groups have agreed.
The BBC reported that:
"A new law - which may be announced in the forthcoming Queen's Speech in May - would not allow GCHQ to access the content of emails, calls or messages without a warrant. But it would enable intelligence officers to identify who an individual or group is in contact with, how often and for how long. They would also be able to see which websites someone had visited. In a statement, the Home Office said action was needed to "maintain the continued availability of communications data as technology changes".
"It is vital that police and security services are able to obtain communications data in certain circumstances to investigate serious crime and terrorism and to protect the public," a spokesman said. "As set out in the Strategic Defence and Security Review we will legislate as soon as parliamentary time allows to ensure that the use of communications data is compatible with the government's approach to civil liberties."
David Davis Conservative MP and former shadow home secretary said "It would make it easier for the government "to eavesdrop on vast numbers of people". "What this is talking about doing is not focusing on terrorists or criminals, it's absolutely everybody's emails, phone calls, web access...All that's got to be recorded for two years and the government will be able to get at it with no by your leave from anybody. He said that until now anyone wishing to monitor communications had been required to gain permission from a magistrate. "You shouldn't go beyond that in a decent civilised society, but that's what's being proposed."
Opinion: As so often in the past once again Mr Davies is talking good sense. Perhaps the current UK government should have looked more closely at the security services it has axed, such as trained police officers and members of the military, rather than go down this road. It will be no replacement for personnel, will drive terrorists underground and in the end simply attack the freedom of law abiding citizens.
All too often, we in the UK complain and voice our concerns but quickly give in. The government will be once again relying on this. The hope will be that once the changes are law we will just accept this attack on our freedom. Is that what you are going to do this time?
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