back to article Brown pledges annual commons debate on surveillance

Gordon Brown today accepted MP’s recommendations for an annual report and debate on the state of UK surveillance in a speech which rejected charges that the government’s increasing use of high-tech surveillance compromises British citizens' liberties. He also said the government was considering subjecting all new UK legislation …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.

Page:

Thumb Down

Brown makes speech not at all triggered by David Davis

It's nice to see that Brown is not at all worried by the possibility that David Davis might stir up a huge amount of antagonism against his loverly surveillance society.

I'm sorry Brown but I don't believe that any of the nasty laws brought in since 9/11 will have any effect whatsoever. The only useful change was lockable, bulletproof cockpit doors.

When the state needs to pass a law that treats everybody as a potential terrorist so the state can discover the actual terrorist you are doing something wrong. Terrorists are very rare so why the hell are you watching me walking down the street or taking note when I fly somewhere?

0
0
Anonymous Coward

"What I thought I'd do was pretend I was one of those deaf mutes."

War is Peace.

Freedom is Slavering

Ignorance is Strength.

0
0
Silver badge
Pirate

And pigs will fly...

Brown promised us a referendum on the EU constitution - whatever name it went under.

Brown's promises promise nothing!

0
0
JCL
Black Helicopters

finger scans

I don't want to go on a great rant, because I know that I easily could, but how does fingerprint access to personal computers translate into giving all our personal information to some great central government owned database?

He's spinning like a top at the moment isn't he? I wonder if he really believes it.

0
0
Flame

Blair/Brown make me sick

I really would like to know how our Squaddies feel everytime they return from overseas to see the freedoms and liberties that they are supposedly fighting/dying for (as Brown stated earlier this week infront of his master GWB) being systematically eroded in the name of Terrorism/Peodophiles/Drugs/"Over-Hyped-Fear-Of-The-Week".

Their flimsy empty excuse for extending detention without charge to 42-days was that it is taking longer to sift through the huge amounts of accumulated data. This Accumulated data is only going to increase and hard-disks grow. Encryption strengths will get stronger, too. What will they do? Detain people for the rest of their natural lives until they finally find some scrap of evidence that the chappie may have parked on a double-yellow-line at some time in their past life...

Whatever happened to "INNOCENT UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY"?

On top of all that, sooner or later we'll be stuck with some even worse government that really will mis-use these laws.

"In Germany, they came first for the Communists, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist;

And then they came for the trade unionists, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist;

And then they came for the Jews, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew;

And then . . . they came for me . . . And by that time there was no one left to speak up." Pastor Martin Niemöller.

Note that the above persons only needed to be "accused".

0
0
Paris Hilton

Yeah right

Quis custodiat ipsos custodes

So, who appoints this new motley crue? Wouldn't be the same people who are monitoring us more and more, whilst not actually achieving much beyond getting some motorists to drive more slowly?

Paris, because she's usually begging to be watched

0
0

ID, Terrorism, Ingsoc

The only strong opinions I've seen for ID Cards are against it. The majority of the public don't seem to have given it much thought.

As for terrorism, I hardly feel terrorised by the current crop of amateurs. Especially when the best they can seem to do is drive a car into an airport, accidentally set fire to themselves, then get set upon by an angry Scotsman.

The “freedom of expression audit” may have some merit, unless its doublespeak. In which case we should start reffering to New Labour as Ingsoc.

0
0
Go

Meh!

"The prime minister argued that terrorism was the “most dramatic *new* threat” facing the UK in the 21st century" (emphasis mine)

Remarkable how quickly the IRA get forgotten, along with the simple fact that we weren't hiding behind our sofas back then, isn't it? Of course, one could argue that it doesn't really matter since it's only an excuse, but that would be realis^H^H^H^H^H^Hcynical...

Proceed with this nonsense since they will, no matter what anyone says.

0
0
Pat
Unhappy

I'm so reassured

Just as reassuring really as:

- 'Education, education, education'

- That dossier on Iraq's WMD threat capability that was presented to parliament, and

- 'There will be a referendum on the EU constitution'

Apparently he is aware there are some 'bad' people around (he managed to get the word 'moral' in) so this is justification for routinely spying on ordinary people instead.

I was watching Brown on tv make this speech and when he spluttered a few times I wished I'd been there to 'help' him, though I'd probably have to explain myself as clearly as the politicos do:

"This is a new form of Heimlich manoeuvre, it only looks like I'm punching him in the stomach!"

0
0
Unhappy

What a techno-fuckwit...

he is!

So GB interprets “many people now have laptops activated by finger-scans.” as "people think fingerprinting everyone is a Good Thing".

No Gordon.

“many people now have laptops activated by finger-scans.”

means that people are now more PERSONALLY security concious, that's all.

Say it often enough though, and the media will start to believe it. Once you've convinced them...

0
0
Silver badge
Thumb Down

20th century methods

"we have used nineteenth century means to solve twenty first century problems"

What like effective policing, parliamentary democracy, respect for citizens ?

"Instead we must have twenty first century methods"

Like total surveillance, internment without trial and a suspicion of a particular religous group - sounds like a mid-20th Century method to me !

0
0
Unhappy

The man is totally and utterly bonkers

Er. That's it. Thanks for listening. Will the last person left, please turn out the lights.

Where's the Gordon-with-devil-horns icon?

0
0
Alert

Hmmm

"Brown said that citizens were not alarmed by the government's demands for biometric data, saying this was proved by the fact that “many people now have laptops activated by finger-scans.”"

So, he's comparing your own fingerprint stored only on your laptop with a national database containing everyones fingerprints and associated information?

Do they ever talk to techy people before making these comments?

0
0
b
Flame

<grind grind grind>

<tooth breaks>

0
0
Thumb Down

You ****ing WHAT?

"we have given people new rights to protest outside Parliament"

So this is the standard government definition of "give", then, which involves taking something away, then returning a tiny bit of it subject to onerous conditions, then claiming to have "enabled" it?

0
0
IT Angle

Choice

*Brown said that citizens were not alarmed by the government's demands for biometric data, saying this was proved by the fact that “many people now have laptops activated by finger-scans.”*

Missed the point about how you choose to buy a lappy with fingerprint recognition, or how the laptop doesn't store the data on a server belonging to the government which may or may not be left on a train next week.

IT, coz the government don't have a clue what it actually is.

0
0
Coat

Eh

"The prime minister argued that terrorism was the “most dramatic new threat” facing the UK in the 21st century, with organized crime, drug trafficking and illegal immigration all close behind."

So, 650 fuel truckers bringing the country to a near standstill isn't a threat then??

Glad to know that climate change, energy security, the massive increase in commodity prices/Inflation/recession are all knocked way down the list.

Phew, I was getting worried.

Mines is the one that's gone up in price 25% in the past 6 months, but as inflation is only 3% I'm all right....

0
0
Alert

Clearly a typo on Gordon's notes

Brown claimed, “It could be said that for too long we have used nineteenth century means to solve twenty first century problems. Instead we must have twenty first century methods to deal with twenty first century challenges.”

I bet his notes said “It could be said that for too long we have used 19th century means to solve 21st century problems. Instead we must have 12th century methods to deal with 21st century challenges.”

Certainly rolling back habeas corpus gets back to the start of the 13th...

I'd be intrigued to see where he's getting his definition of liberty from - it's definitely not Montesquieu, who argued against thought-crimes and for making it as easy as possible for the innocent to prove their innocence.

0
0
Silver badge
Black Helicopters

Clueless

***"Brown said that citizens were not alarmed by the government's demands for biometric data, saying this was proved by the fact that “many people now have laptops activated by finger-scans.”"***

Well, he doesn't speak for me. I *AM* alarmed by the Government's demands for biometric data. And Brown's naivete regarding the issue is highlighted when he confuses the idea of verifying a fingerprint on a PC login with the much more intrusive storage of an actual fingerprint pattern on a (probably insecure) national database, data that will probably be sold at a profit to 3rd parties in much the same way the DVLA sells vehicle licence data to wheel clamping scumbags.

From the BBC News site:

***"He (Brown) said terrorists wanted to destroy British "freedoms" and that must not be allowed."***

Obviously the best way to stop terrorists destroying British "freedoms" is for the Government to destroy them first. I mean, you can't destroy something if its already lying in ruins, can you?

I see that Hazel Blears has helpfully created a timely reminder of just how far we can trust this bunch of clowns with our sensitive data:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7459579.stm

No Brown, Just *NO*!!!

0
0
Bronze badge

Annual debate?

I may have it wrong, but doesn't this form of words usually presage the announcement of some absolutely ghastly new measure, the damage from which it will take years to undo?

0
0
Thumb Up

gee thanks

Wow "new powers" to protest outside parliament!

Our beloved dictators are so generous!

0
0
Unhappy

You just can't make this up!!

Honestly - the vacuus thinking by our illustrious Government is beyond belief. So let's get this right - because some people are able to use fingerprint scanning to access their laptops we are all OK with this now? hmmm, there is a big difference between me using my fingerprints to lock a laptop and the state demanding them.

And to even consider that doing all of this, having ID cards, being watched and checked is reassuring and gives us back our liberty. So they have taken it then?

Just absolutely dire

0
0
Coat

What?!?

Brown said that citizens were not alarmed by the government's demands for biometric data, saying this was proved by the fact that “many people now have laptops activated by finger-scans.”

That is one of the stupidest statements I've ever heard from Gordon Brown (Bush has done much better though!)

Scanning my fingerprint to access MY laptop is quite different to the government holding everything from my DNA profile to my Iris scans on a central database that, if this government's history with technology is anything to go by, will be completely insecure and operated by a bunch of monkeys who don't know their Security Roles from their SQL.

How long until BluRays are being mailed around the country containing enough biometric data to make current identity theft methods look amateurish?

Mine's the one with the gloves, reflective goggles, and the anti-DNA extracting needle lining.

0
0
Stop

Brown = pillock

"Brown said that citizens were not alarmed by the government's demands for biometric data, saying this was proved by the fact that “many people now have laptops activated by finger-scans.”"

I am not alarmed that my laptop knows my fingerprint.

I might be alarmed if a thief stole my laptop...and my finger.

I would be alarmed if the Government knew my fingerprint.

I would be very alarmed if government officials left the details in the back of a cab, or on a train, or on a CD somewhere.

I would be extremely alarmed if someone with a candle and gummi bear started manufacturing my finger print overlay and selling them on ebay.

Mr Brown is a pillock without mandate from the electorate to govern, and the first chance we get, he will get the boot.

0
0
Anonymous Coward

To save myself a rant

Utter Lying WANKER.

Leader of Complete Lying Wankers.

In a building full of Wankers.

Presiding over a Nation of Stupid Wankers.

Wanker.

0
0
Silver badge
Alert

Oh come on!

Please Gordon, do you really think we're that stupid? Most of us know exactly what's going on. Through the use of technology, we are becoming more savvy every day, so please, stop treating us like morons.

0
0
Pirate

I never lost my right...

... to protest outside parliament. Try and stop me and i'll get French on your ass!

Did anybody try get that protest to go down Whitehall when Bush was here? You know, the old "There's x000 of us, and sixteen of you coppers in shields. If this were France, you'd have a better chance of surviving unscathed against a charging rhinocerous."

Unfortulately, this isn't France. This is the United Kingdom of Apathy Britain.

0
0
Silver badge
Coat

'the world itself had become more global'

...And there was me thinking it was an oblate spheroid...

0
0
Anonymous Coward

The entire

The entire notion behind both modern Terrorism "investigation" and Peadophillia "investigation" (the bang em up and wait till they admit they did it/till we "find" the evidence we need) reminds me of the Guildford Four and Maguire Seven...

On top of that the government and general populations are obviously based on fear and are clearly showing all the most loathsome and discusting traits present in human society. The revenge, the fear, the panic, the prejeduice, the spite and vitriol.

The notion that what does it matter if a few peoples lives are ruined as long as people may be saved.

meh, one day I'll get out of here, till then, just hope I don't get a knock at the door.

0
0
Stop

needle in a haystack - meet google

The one counter-argument that I haven't heard to date is that whilst terrorists are using technology like cell-phones, computers, encryption etc - the police, MI5, MI6 should also have significantly improved methods for sifting through what is now a digital society.

If I can find anything on my 120GB hard-drive in seconds using spotlight, or millions of pages using Google et al, surely the police can also index an array of a thousands of hard-drives and apply some fairly simple search terms, or other means of making sense of the data?

As an analogy, if the haystack hiding the needle is so much bigger these days, surely our detection techniques have evolved somewhat from going through it straw by straw?

0
0
Alien

Um

Would surveillance not be better off being used on the all of the civil service who keep losing all of our data? At least that way you can look back through the tapes and find out what the hell they did with it.

Alien - because Brown is alien to the concept of secure data.

0
0
Silver badge

Freedom of expression audit

How is that supposed to work - will they line us all up and make us say something? Will they then count those who still remained unarrested 42 days later?

0
0

Oooh dear, bad day to say...

'Brown said that citizens were not alarmed by the government's demands for biometric data, saying this was proved by the fact that “many people now have laptops activated by finger-scans.”'

Did Hazel???

0
0
Coat

QuisCustodiet Ipsos Custodes

Government funded department to watch the Government.... Hmmm

So you have a 'mission statement' which proves you are independent, but, upper management is fully aware that if you have any findings which question the government your funding will be cut.

Look at the difference between the Data Commissioner and the IPCC's funding issues and you can see that its not a good idea to rock the boat...

Mines the one with the "you can trust me, it's Goverment Policy" logo

0
0
Anonymous Coward

"we have given people new rights to protest outside Parliament"

David Davis' resignation prompted me to pick up my copy of 1984 again last week. I read this bit earlier today which now seems quite fitting.

"It appeared there had been demonstrations to thank Big Brother for raising the chocolate ration to twenty grammes a week. And only yesterday, he reflected, it had been announced that the ration was to be reduced to twenty grammes a week. Was it possible that they could swallow that, after only twenty-four hours? Yes, they swallowed it....

Was he, then, alone in the possession of a memory?"

0
0
Stop

I despair...

Clearly, I'm not the only person who is feeling more than a little terrorised by the Government of OUR country.

I do not feel insecurity from Terrorists today and I didn't in the 70's, 80's and 90's when the terrorists were at work then.

I felt considerably more secure about my money and identity in the past than I do today and have NO faith that ID cards will do anything other than make me less secure. There is no balanced evidence for the governments case.

That these preposterous fools premote such nonsense is a waste of their effort, OUR taxes and is a diversion.

Just stop it, now, and start treating the taxpaying electorate with a little more respect and a little less contempt, please.

0
0
Flame

So ...

They'll debate it and still push ahead regardless, after all "it's for the greater good" ... assholes.

0
0
Flame

Vote for me!

Yes citizens - a vote for me is a vote for you! While you're at it, why not give me all your money, and cheer while I take over the world. Hooray!

0
0

One must ask:

Does he honestly beleive in everything he say? Does the government actually beleive itself?

It's much more worrying if they do.

0
0
Paris Hilton

Us and Them

"On CCTV, he argued that “it actually helps give them [citizens] back their liberty, the liberty to go about their lives with reassurance.”"

So, the citizens are "them". Does this mean that Brown does not think of himself as a citizen? Interesting!

"It helps give them back their liberty", this implies that their liberty was taken away. Although most citizens would argue that their liberty has been taken away, it is refreshing to hear a PM confess to the theft!

What a dumb bunny, he kicked himself in the nuts twice in one sentence.

PH because she knows what it is like to have her liberty given back.

0
0
Thumb Down

And the irony is ...

... that the great British public are too damn busy watching a programme called "Big Brother" to notice what's going on outside.

God, I hate what's happening to this country.

0
0
Unhappy

No thank you Mr. Brown, I wasn't born yesterday

An annual debate on anything is obviously a knee jerk intended to make the news and then be quietly forgotten. Nice to know that DD's resignation has had some impact at least, though.

As for a "freedom of expression audit" - God help us! I guess most people don't realise that they publish impact assessments on proposed legislation already. They're full of the sort of, ahem, "arguments" that ministers come out with when they're doing interviews on TV (i.e. spin). Balanced? Not. Independent? Not. Believable? Not.

How will a "freedom of expression audit" be any different?

I think the only real test we need of freedom of expression is for us all to start expressing ourselves freely and see how many of us get locked up. After you...

0
0
Alien

Re clueless

"After Gordon Brown was informed of the theft from Ms Blears' office, he told cabinet ministers to ask their civil servants to remind staff of the importance of enforcing procedures on the treatment of sensitive information."

A Minister f**ks up at her Constituency office & Brown blames Civil Servants. When are this Govt. going to take responsibility for their own actions.

A Man from Mars because Brown & his cronies are obviously on a different planet

0
0
Pirate

hewlett packard put it there, not me.

2 questions Gordon...

1) How many people actually use that funny little touch pad that doesn't seem to do anything and that the IT dept just told me to ignore...

and

2) This is just the next standard model from work and it replaces the last one... do i get any say in the matter? No... so really the finger print scanner is there because Hewlett Packard thought it would be a good idea.

How can you take that as some kind of indication that i want to be on a DNA Database??

Every time a politician ignores our concerns and steam rollers over public opinion, another terrorist gets their wings... although maybe thats what our esteemed leader wants, so then they can say "we told you so".

I dont feel safe now (mainly from the state but also the hoodies and all those other boogey men)... this government has reduced our safety and continues to do so.

Bring back our civil liberties and people will have less to terrorist about!!

0
0
Silver badge
Unhappy

So many arguments...

...that I could come up with against pretty much this entire article - or, to be more accurate, the person and situation that the article is informing us of.

Instead, I had a wank - given NuLabias record of actually paying attention to public opinion, it seemed like a more productive use of my time.

I can't even summon the energy up to list off the broken promises - some pretty fundamental ones - that have come up of late, never mind the rotten policies, infringements of civil rights [screw Magna Carta, just stuff that we used to take for granted], etc etc.

I swear to god NuLab won't be happy until we are all RFID'd up, in barcoded suits, living within 2 miles of our minimum wage job [no inflation problem if you don't have any money!] as happy little banana replublic serfs.

Not that I seriously think the Tories would be much better - there don't appear to be any real MPs, with things like ideals and morals, or public interest, any more - just career politicians desperate to hang onto the gravy train.

Steven R

0
0
Silver badge
Thumb Down

Annual debate?

Of course just because Parliament *debates* something doesn't mean that they are actually obliged to *DO* anything, especially when you have a bunch of arrogant, Big Brother, Nanny State pillocks like the current lot who are quite happy to guillotine debates which might ask awkward questions about the liberties they are taking away...

0
0
Stop

Didnt PM Brown, just...

If I am not mistaken, Prime Minister Gordon Brown just spent an entire day, vehemently, pledging (to President George Bush) that the wishes of the British-people would, in no way, be allowed to interfere with British-government support for the Iraq War..?

Hhhmmm... Who does Brown work for again..?

0
0
Paris Hilton

ok, let's review this one more time

When do politicians lie?

Right, only when their lips are moving.

Paris, 'cos her lips are moving, too.

0
0

Many people now have laptops activated by finger-scans

Manufacturers are making laptops with fingerprint scanners - how many people would go to the effort and expense of requesting a scanner if it were not built onto the machine?

What a tosser - he thinks we're all stupid, unfortunately in the majority of cases he is correct.

0
0
Stop

Re: Blair/Brown make me sick

> By Anonymous Coward

> Posted Tuesday 17th June 2008 14:49 GMT

>

> I really would like to know how our Squaddies feel everytime they return

> from overseas to see the freedoms and liberties that they are supposedly

> fighting/dying for (as Brown stated earlier this week infront of his master

> GWB) being systematically eroded in the name of

> Terrorism/Peodophiles/Drugs/"Over-Hyped-Fear-Of-The-Week".

Well I can tell you what one ex-serviceman thought. A very good friend of mine was so disgusted with what they were doing that he emigrated to Canada. I am only staying because 1) Canada is too cold for me and 2) I want to "Do my Bit" by trying to wake people up to this stuff before the doors finally close and it's all too late.

0
0

Page:

This topic is closed for new posts.

Forums