Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 20th Aug 2013 10:39 UTC
In the News Another checkmark in our road towards a totalitarian society: government intimidating the free press, destroying materials, and threatening to take them to court - to shut down a newspaper. No joke. The British government demanded that The Guardian hand over all materials related to Edward Snowden so that they could be destroyed. If the newspaper did not comply, the British government would go to court to shut down The Guardian.

The mood toughened just over a month ago, when I received a phone call from the centre of government telling me: "You've had your fun. Now we want the stuff back." There followed further meetings with shadowy Whitehall figures. The demand was the same: hand the Snowden material back or destroy it. I explained that we could not research and report on this subject if we complied with this request. The man from Whitehall looked mystified. "You've had your debate. There's no need to write any more."

During one of these meetings I asked directly whether the government would move to close down the Guardian's reporting through a legal route - by going to court to force the surrender of the material on which we were working. The official confirmed that, in the absence of handover or destruction, this was indeed the government's intention.

The newspaper told the government that even if they did comply, it would be pointless - all the materials related to Snowden had already been spread throughout the world, the actual editing was done in New York, the journalist in question (Greenwald) lived in Brazil - but the British government stood fast.

And so one of the more bizarre moments in the Guardian's long history occurred - with two GCHQ security experts overseeing the destruction of hard drives in the Guardian's basement just to make sure there was nothing in the mangled bits of metal which could possibly be of any interest to passing Chinese agents. "We can call off the black helicopters," joked one as we swept up the remains of a MacBook Pro.


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RE[16]: Talk about overblown
by kwan_e on Sun 25th Aug 2013 13:21 UTC in reply to "RE[15]: Talk about overblown"
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No. You're posting false claims & statements, not opinion. Let me remind you of some of what you've said:

"In a democracy, the people are the government."
"The government is not a private enterprise. Information can't be stolen by the people who own it (the public)."
"The government has no rights of ownership over my emails and phone calls, yet they keep them."
"So it's all right for you if the government steals personal information from its citizens, but not okay for citizens to steal them back."

All of that you made as statements, not your own personal opinion of what things should be. And all of that is false.

Basically, the crux of your argument is that because I made definitive sounding statements, I could not have been stating a (widely held) opinion.

Nowhere in the English language does it say I'm not allowed to be definite while expressing a WIDELY HELD opinion.

For example, Lincoln's Gettysburg speech:

"government of the people, by the people, for the people"

I guess Lincoln was also wrong, according to your ignorant arse. ilovebeer thinks he's better than Lincoln. Good luck with that delusion. I guess you'll be avoiding theatres from now on.

So, again, AT LEAST 23 people understood I was saying what a democracy SHOULD be. You are the ONLY ONE who could not comprehend what most other people could. Look back on your life, I think you'll find it's a common affliction with you that you're the only person to deliberately misunderstand other people in a maliciously stupid way when others have no trouble.

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