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back to article Gotcha: Oz Greens squeeze web snoop law confession

Senator Scott Ludlam of The Australian Greens is trumpeting a victory in the ongoing data retention debate in Australia, with the attorney-general's department admitting that it had prepared a draft of relevant legislation, in spite of earlier denials. On Friday, Ludlam issued a media release reiterating that in hearings in May …

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Every government spies on it's people (and everybody else it can) and lie about it. All Snowden did is show how much.

Every government department wants access to this information (tax, police, child support, welfare etc) and as such will do everything they can to bring it in. They know the public will be upset so it's easier to sneak it in and lie about it.

Safer for everyone to just assume they're watching and act accordingly.

What pisses me off is with this information, they can accuse you of any crap claim and then go fishing through your history for any misdeeds you may or may not have done. Yes you've been cleared of fraud so now we'll charge you with piracy cause you've logged into The Pirate Bay several times in the last five years...

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Devil

Spying is not the only answer

Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it.

1. Option A - rebuild Stazi, Securitate and establish a total surveilance regime where the powers that be hold a massive dossier on every cittizen. Historically - this approach _ALWAYS_ ends up in blood. Be it a few puddles or a sea of blood like the overturn of Cheushesku, it has always ended in blood.

2. Option B - build a database nation. You are referenced by your number from birth and from there on your tax, health, social security, benefit entitlement, in fact everything which the government should hold about you - even your parking tickets is crossreferenced and held centrally with some reasonable level of access control. That amazingly enough _DID_ _NOT_ end in a sea of blood in Eastern European countries which had it (Bulgaria), just the opposite. In fact it is in there till this day. Same as in a lot of other Eu countries.

Food for thought... I'd rather have working option B which is under public scrutiny, with documented public control, etc instead of a bunch of Henrich Muller wannabies trying to build "law and order" to his golden standard.

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Re: Spying is not the only answer

You forget that Bulgaria is also one of the nations with massively high corruption levels... Do we really want to have a system that would allow for such corruption?

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Devil

Re: Spying is not the only answer

Quote: "Do we really want to have a system that would allow for such corruption?" First of all your info is a bit out of date. Second it has always been organized crime, etc not corruption which was the problem.

In any case Scandinavia, Baltic states, etc all operate similar database nation systems. So the system quite obviously has little to do with corruption and state transparency.

In any case. It is a simple matter of choice between having a central register with legal supervision and access control and even mere council clerks having sigint interception and surveilance powers as per the RIP act. When you add up all the "allowed to snoop, intercept, interfere, etc" clauses in the current UK and US law code and compare that to the case for "database nation" the choice becomes quite obvious.

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Big Brother

@Voland's right hand - Re: Spying is not the only answer

You forgot Option C - None of the above!

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Anonymous Coward

"With a difficult election due this year, the federal government has decided to shelve the idea for now."

Which means don't vote for any incumbent. The fact is, the people elected approved the spending. SO don't trust their word about what their views really are.

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"Which means don't vote for any incumbent. The fact is, the people elected approved the spending. SO don't trust their word about what their views really are."

Yes but the other bastards also want to bring it in, you know to stop terrorists and kiddy porn...

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" Yes but the other bastards also want to bring it in, you know to stop terrorists and kiddy porn... "

Then vote them out next election, show there's no career in office if they try to push for it.

This is the hard part of democracy most people: "Eternal vigilance." Keep your eye on the bastards and chuck'em out if they misbehave!

And for the American readers: That means quit letting the Reps and Dems take alternate turns screwing over the public. They've been tag teaming the Americans for years, and things only get worse.

Vote *Anyone else*, even if they don't get elected, enough voters turning away from the status quo will drive home the point that "Enough is fucking ENOUGH!"

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"Then vote them out next election, show there's no career in office if they try to push for it."

It will be in by the next election

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Anonymous Coward

Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

Of these three, democracy is by far the least important. Our current government is a blend of democracy, plutocracy and oligarchy. Without transparency and freedom of information, we don't even know whom to trust at election time. With those two, we can at least enjoy an informed vote and, with less democratic governments, we can complain and even take to the streets, if necessary.

Our governments use the catch-cry "Democracy!" to befuddle us and keep us from interfering.

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

"Our governments use the catch-cry "Democracy!" to befuddle us and keep us from interfering."

It's a two party system. How do you change the system when the two parties are different sides of the same coin?

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

"..How do you change the system when the two parties are different sides of the same coin?.."

Simple: Vote for every Independant on the list irrespective of thier policies (or lack of them) and make the Incumbents earn their place at trough....

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

Simple: Vote for every Independant on the list irrespective of thier policies (or lack of them) and make the Incumbents earn their place at trough....

No, don't do that. That's how the Greens got into power in the first place. THAT'S why you're paying as much for power as you are.

Be careful what you wish for, you may actually get it...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

It's a two party system.

No it isn't. We do not have first past the post, so a vote for a minor party is not wasted. As long as you put the main party that you think is slightly less repulsive at a higher priority than the main party that you think is slightly more repulsive, then the main party that you think is slightly less repulsive will get your vote - even if you put them second last and last on your ballot paper. In the meantime, the party that you put first will get electoral funding, which at the very least will help it to get its message across at the next election. All this without wasting your vote.

Not only that, but if enough people agree with you, then the minority candidate to whom you gave first preference might actually get elected.

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

That's how I've been voting for years.

I just wish the other 16odd million in the country would do the same. Being in a Safe Labor seat = get fucked over harder.

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

" ... Simple: Vote for every Independant on the list irrespective of thier policies (or lack of them) and make the Incumbents earn their place at trough...."

Do not, however, VOTE GREEN because they were the only ones to rub our noses in it.

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

"... No, don't do that. That's how the Greens got into power in the first place. THAT'S why you're paying as much for power as you are."

Electricity supply is a State responsibility. There are no Greens in any position of responsibility in any state parliament. The op opinion is thus a logical lunacy.

See instead the opinion of, for instance, The Gratton Institute @ https://theconversation.com/why-australians-are-getting-a-raw-deal-on-electricity-prices-13296, as to why the increase in electricity prices have substantially outpaced inflation.

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

"Electricity supply is a State responsibility. There are no Greens in any position of responsibility in any state parliament. The op opinion is thus a logical lunacy."

Funny? I recall the carbon tax was federal. It's the Green's handiwork.

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

sigh ... not to stay off topic but according to https://theconversation.com/fact-check-will-scrapping-the-carbon-price-lower-electricity-prices-14408 the carbon tax amounts to, at most, 10% of cost increases.

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

The Greens are rubbing your noses in the trough that the incumbents are trying to earn their place at?

I fear this metaphor is stretching to breaking point by now but still: That doesn't sound so bad!

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

"Electricity supply is a State responsibility. There are no Greens in any position of responsibility in any state parliament. The op opinion is thus a logical lunacy."

Carbon tax, large scale and small scale renewable energy targets, clean energy finance corporation...

The list of FEDERAL costs imposed on electricity generation because of the Greens goes on.

Please get a clue before hitting the submit button next time...

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

"the carbon tax amounts to, at most, 10% of cost increases"

15% of an average household bill actually, plus the renewable energy targets which pushes the federal green schemes over 20% - that's significant any way you cut it.

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

staying off topic ...

"15% of an average household bill actually, plus the renewable energy targets which pushes the federal green schemes over 20% - that's significant any way you cut it."

and your figures comes from where ? In any case this is still less expensive than the cost of a new T.V. and surely a reasonable contribution/obligation to ask of citizens facing, as KRudd has put it, "the greatest moral, economic and social challenge of our time" ?

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Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

Re: Democracy, Transparency and Freedom of Information.

Staying off topic ...

"Carbon tax, large scale and small scale renewable energy targets, clean energy finance corporation...

The list of FEDERAL costs imposed on electricity generation because of the Greens goes on."

Carbon Tax ... see previous post.

RET ... see https://theconversation.com/in-defence-of-renewable-energy-targets-8721

" ... The estimate is that the LRET adds around $32 per year per average customer: it’s around 1-2% of the total yearly electricity bill. The cost of the SRET is higher, at $64 per year, but this will come down as the controversial solar credits scheme is phased out."

A small price to pay considering the tens of thousands of Australians who are voting with their wallets and also signing up for the even more expensive Green Energy schemes

Clean Energy Finance Corporation ... see https://theconversation.com/the-clean-energy-finance-corporation-the-purpose-and-the-hypocrisy-of-industry-6625 and https://theconversation.com/can-we-do-without-a-clean-energy-finance-bank-15474

Self funding (all monies lent returned to the taxpayer) independent commercial institution lending at the long term bond rate ... cheaper than any other source of finance.

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Anonymous Coward

Rational voting

Given that marginal seats tend to attract higher levels of government funding, it would seem that the best outcome for a given electorate would result from always voting against the incumbent. If sufficient people did this, the seat would change hands at every election, making it appear marginal.

This does however require a high level of cynicism.

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Go

Re: Rational voting

"This does however require a high level of cynicism."

When dealing with politicians, is their any other sort?

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Economical with the truth?

"the Department has written to the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee to correct their misleading answers"

Stop abusing the language - if the person making the original statement knew that it was untrue then they LIED - they did not give 'misleading answers'. That should be a sacking offence.

If they had been told what to say by their masters/underlings, and genuinely had no actual knowledge themselves, then it was an incorrect answer (not misleading), albeit unwitting, but the person who drafted the answer LIED. Again a sacking offence.

Who has been sacked?

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Anonymous Coward

5 eyes means Aussies are already spying

Australia is part of 5 eyes, just like the UK is.

UK was *already* spying on its citizens and providing the feed to NSA, which mean that Aussie is too.

Just as "Mastering the Internet" went ahead before the legislation was discussed to make it legal (and that legislation never happened):

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/05/03/gchq_mti/

William Hague can pretend that Parliament granted the *Foreign* office the right to spy on Brits, but that idea is laughable. The law that was supposed to make "Mastering the Internet" legal was repeatedly rejected as against democracy and a breach of right to privacy.

So the Aussies will have done exactly the same thing. Spied first, gave the NSA a tap first. Then push to make a law to make it legal *after*.

This push is a push to pass the law before whistleblowers (or perhaps Snowden) reveal massive Aussie surveillance of Australian internet traffic.

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