Archive | Deep State

Why you should trust no politician on Bigbrotherism

Within living memory, our loved ones were persecuted, hounded to suicide, imprisoned for activities that we recognize today as normal and right: being gay, smoking pot, demanding that settler governments honor their treaties with First Nations. The legitimization of these activities only took place because we had a private sphere in which to agitate for them.

Doctorow on Trudeau and Obama: What happens after the ‘good’ politicians give away our rights? Cory Doctorow shares a cautionary tale. »


Tyranny without a tyrant

The greater the bureaucratization of public life, the greater will be the attraction of violence. In a fully developed bureaucracy there is nobody left with whom one could argue, to whom one could present grievances, on whom the pressures of power could be exerted. Bureaucracy is the form of government in which everybody is deprived of political freedom, of the power to act; for the rule by Nobody is not no-rule, and where all are equally powerless we have a tyranny without a tyrant.

Hannah Ahrendt, Reflections on Violence, The New York Review of Books, 1969


Really, how much surveillance is enough?

Imagine mass surveillance as a line from 0 to 100. Zero is total anarchy and no control at all. One hundred is total control and surveillance of all the people, in all places, all the time.

So, where are we today? At 45? 60? 75?

Second, in which direction are we moving? Right you are, towards 100.

At which point will this become dangerous, for real? Should we say stop? Can we say stop? Is it too late to say stop? Discuss.

There are international conventions for moments like this. They enshrine our fundamental human rights. One of them is the right to privacy. The right to be left alone.

However, we constantly hear Big Government say that we must compromise, that we must strike a »balance« between security, crime fighting, copyright protection, child protection, the war on drugs, the fight against tax evasion, trafficking, terror propaganda, hate speech, the occasional outburst of moral panic – and our fundamental rights.

The only way to strike such a »balance« is to restrain and undermine citizens rights. And that must not happen. This is the red line. This is why these fundamental rights are set down in very serious European, EU, and UN Conventions.

You simply do not fiddle around with fundamental human rights.

Still, this is exactly what governments all over are doing – striking a »balance«. Taking away our rights towards the ruling political class and our bureaucratic overlords. And this is always done formally correct, within our democratic parliamentarian systems. Because there are not enough people who say No.

Considering that our fundamental human rights are there to protect the people from the state – I really think that the people ought to defend and protect them better. Because our elected representatives will not. They are not on the peoples’ side on this one. They are the state, they are Big Government. They have a different agenda.

To be overly clear: This is about the state taking away your protections against… the whims of the state and its functionaries. This is very bad.

Furthermore, we can not know who might rule the state tomorrow. Please, learn from history. Don’t put dangerous tools of control and mass surveillance in the hands of dangerous people.

All of this must end now – or we will no doubt slide into a more authoritarian society.



Theresa May should blame herself, not the Internet

To nobody’s surprise also the London Bridge assassins were known to the authorities. One of them has been in a tv-documentary about jihadism. And he was reported trying to convert children he met in a park to Islam. According to himself, he would be prepared to kill his own mother in the name of Allah.

Responsible for the authorities that are supposed to handle things like this was – between 2010 and 2016 – now Prime Minister Theresa May.

Today her only comment is that she would like to censor the Internet.

Censoring information and maximizing surveillance of the people is not the way to defend democracy. That would rather be to support the terrorists strive to destroy our open and free society. And it would do very little to stop religious radicalization.

To Theresa Mays defense, it should be said that it is not all that easy to know what to do. You can hardly lock people up who have not (yet) committed any crime. You cannot jail people because of their skin color, their cultural background, their faith or their political beliefs. And you should not punish entire ethnic groups because of the deeds of a few.

There must be better ways to defeat terrorism.


A few links:

London Bridge terrorist ‘was in Channel 4 documentary about British jihadis’ »

Theresa May Blames The Internet For London Bridge Attack; Repeats Demands To Censor It »

‘Blame the internet’ is just not a good enough response, Theresa May »

Tim Farron warns of win for terrorists if web is made surveillance tool »


War on terror: We are doing it wrong

Time and time again it turns out that terrorists have been known to authorities before their attacks.

In the tragic Manchester case, there had been numerous reports on the perpetrator. But these warnings were ignored. (This also happened under PM Theresa Mays watch as UK Secretary of State for the Home Department.)

• Manchester attack: UK authorities missed several opportunities to stop suicide bomber Salman Abedi »
• Manchester Bomber Was Repeatedly Reported to Authorities Over Five Years »
• Manchester attacks: MI5 probes bomber ‘warnings’ »

Despite of this – governments insist that the way to fight terrorism is more mass surveillance, infringing on ordinary, decent peoples right to privacy.

This approach is counterproductive – and will make us all less safe.

Clearly, surveillance should be focused on people we have reason to believe are dangerous to others.

And most of these people can be identified, e.g. by their association with others or after having traveled to places of certain types of war and conflict.

Authorities refusal to take a reasonable approach to this issue raises questions about the real purpose of government surveillance schemes.



UK to move against end-to-end encryption after general election

Once again there are indications the UK government intends to use the law to lean on encryption. A report in The Sun this week quoted a Conservative minister saying that should the government be re-elected, which polls suggest it will, it will move quickly to compel social media firms to hand over decrypted data.

Techcrunch: Could the UK be about to break end-to-end encryption? »


G7 Group unite to limit free speech

Dear all,

Please take notice that the G7 meeting just decided to beef up censorship and control of the Internet.

If you make censorship possible at all – sooner or later it will be used by sinister minds.

Please – do not limit the freedom of speech. We cannot silence or put people in prison, simply because we do not agree with whatever they are saying. (Unless they are a direct threat to other people’s immediate security. And if so, only after a fair trial respecting fundamental human rights.)

Giving Big Government and Big Data control over the freedom of the word – that must not happen.