Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 23rd Nov 2016 15:53 UTC

The UK is about to become one of the world's foremost surveillance states, allowing its police and intelligence agencies to spy on its own people to a degree that is unprecedented for a democracy. The UN's privacy chief has called the situation "worse than scary." Edward Snowden says it’s simply "the most extreme surveillance in the history of western democracy."

The legislation in question is called the Investigatory Powers Bill. It's been cleared by politicians and awaits only the formality of royal assent before it becomes law. The bill will legalize the UK's global surveillance program, which scoops up communications data from around the world, but it will also introduce new domestic powers, including a government database that stores the web history of every citizen in the country. UK spies will be empowered to hack individuals, internet infrastructure, and even whole towns - if the government deems it necessary.

"Because while the truncheon may be used in lieu of conversation, words will always retain their power. Words offer the means to meaning, and for those who will listen, the enunciation of truth. And the truth is, there is something terribly wrong with this country, isn't there? Cruelty and injustice, intolerance and oppression. And where once you had the freedom to object, to think and speak as you saw fit, you now have censors and systems of surveillance coercing your conformity and soliciting your submission. How did this happen? Who's to blame?"

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RE: Why brexit?
by BeamishBoy on Wed 23rd Nov 2016 19:32 UTC in reply to "Why brexit?"
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I have no idea why he's mentioned Brexit in relation to the Investigatory Powers bill either.*

It's certainly not because they snuck it in: the IPB has been widely and intensively covered in British media despite the current preoccupation with Trump and Britain leaving the EU.

*: Nor, for that matter, do I see the relevance of mentioning the EDL (a hopelessly fringe movement) or electoral reform (which, er, the people voted overwhelmingly against in a 2011 referendum).

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