> He does know he's in China right??
Yes, in the UK he'd be arrested as a terrorist!
6927 posts • joined 19 Jan 2007
> Although he declared that he had not travelled to the UK before or ever been deported, a biometric check showed a failed asylum claim in 2004 under a different identity.
And, of course, this judgement was entirely, guaranteed, 100% right and it could not, in any way, shape or form, have been a False Postive and his details were not accidentally matched with someone else who had a different identity...!
So the Government is going to spend £6bn of the public's money on this (multiply any Government cost estimate by at least 5 to get the likely real cost) no doubt to "protect" us from terrorists.
Of course first they have to actually know *who* the terrorists are, aren't they?
And of course they'll also want to wrap this into the National Identity Database scheme as well so you can look forward to being fingerprinted and probably DNA tested as well whenever you want to go on holiday to make sure you're signed up and Big Brother has you on file.
I'm glad I like to go on surfing holidays in Devon...! (Although I'm going to be riding down on my motorcycle, so Automatic Number Plate Recognition will probably be tracking me...)
Having had over 1,800 people sign my petition on the Number 10 website and then getting a response that was just a re-hash of self-serving Home Office statements (see: http://www.number-10.gov.uk/output/Page11535.asp ), suggesting that the person who wrote the reply hadn't actually bothered to really read the petition or take a look at the laws that are being proposed (see http://tinyurl.com/2bhxcw ) I think this is a damn good thing!
Maybe now the Government will actually start to become properly *accountable* to the electorate, something which they were always supposed to be.
Remember, you're Civil *Servants* guys!
What an excellent article.
For too long those of us who have been telling others about the FUD being spread by the media have been ignored or accused of supporting terrorism or told "you'd change your tune if it was *you* that was bombed!"
Frankly you ought to be published in the National press which is read by those who "make the decisions" instead of El Reg which is only read by those who think...!
So, let's see...
We normally get politicians who preach morality or family values or other wholesome virtues who then turn out to be having extra-marital affairs or mired in sleaze or to have smoked dope.
Here we have one who is up front (shut up!) about what she does and people criticise her for being honest?
What does that say about UK politics?!
To the anonymous poster above:
Yes, ISPs should offer filtering services, but that's it.
> A lot of these ISP's just let everything through and then claim no responsibility for content.
If you drive down a road and abduct a child off the pavement, who is responsible? The people who built the road? No? Then *why* should an ISP be responsible for monitoring all the sites everyone visits and, somehow (gods alone know how) block any "unacceptable" content?
> you'll change your tune
Ah, this is the "Civil Libertarians are hypocrites" argument.
Sure, I mean we people who believe in Rights are all just Ivory Tower, Bleeding-Heart Liberal Intellectuals who have no contact with the Real World (tm) and we should actually be *happy* to see people treated as "presumed guilty" just on the off-chance that it might prevent a crime.
Of course if *YOU* were one of those people kicked off MySpace because of a false-positive match between your name and that of a registered Sex Offender, you'd just go "Oh well, never mind, at least because they're denying me access there's a chance that someone else will be too and that just might stop a child being abused, so I don't mind being falsely accused of being a paedophile..."
It doesn't matter a damn whether a fingerprint can be reverse hashed or not, what matters is that the damn fingerprint shouldn't be asked for in the first place!
I think that unless we're very careful, we're soon going to start regretting allowing our Government to consider that our Identity and our DNA and our Finger Prints and so on as *their* property instead of *ours*.
All schemes like this do is con children and parents into thinking "well, there's no harm in this" so another liberty (the right to go about your lawful business without let or hinderance) is whittled away a bit more.
> I would, however, appreciate the legitimate possibility of being able to give back as good as offered - if only the law which no longer protects us will allow us to protect ourselves.
You rather miss the point that if someone decides to mug you using one of these you won't *get* the chance to "give back" because you'll already be dancing to the tune of a few thousand volts!
That is why they were made illegal in the UK because someone quite sensibly realised that unless you're walking around with it in your hand all the time the mugger is going to get in first.
Better nobody has them.
So after DNA databases and Biometric Passports, once again Big Brother will be treating us *all* as potential terrorists "for our own protection" and monitoring our every journey on the roads?
But, tell me, unless they already *knew* the number plates of the vehicles the bungling bombers used, *how* exactly is this going to make any difference?
Ok, they can figure out where they *came* from, but I would have thought that would have been pretty easy to work out anyway, without risking breaching everyone else's right to "Go about their lawful business without let or hinderance"...
Given that I don't tend to want to re-visit search results once I've found what I'm looking for, why does Google apparently need to be able to know what I searched for yesterday or last week or last year?
Will this somehow give me "better" search results in future? I don't think so.
Will this allow others to monitor what I've searched for? Well, yes it could.
Let's say I'm engaged in a discussion about terrorism in a chat forum, so I look up Bin Laden and Bomb Making and Glasgow and Propane and so on...
John Law demands Google hand over information on searches and maybe this time they make the subpoena stick (remember Google only refused to obey the previous one because "it might reveal proprietory algorithms" not because it was a breach of Civil Rights!) and "Oho! We've got a terrorists suspect here...!"
> Fix this planet before you go looking for other ones to f*ck up.
Whether it was a meteor or volcanoes or whatever, *something* wiped out the dinosaurs.
It is a statistical certainty that *something* will happen again in the future.
If all of Humanity's eggs are in one basket (ie one planet), it won't matter how well "fixed" the place might have been, because nobody's going to be left to notice.
Apropos of this thread, you can, at least, check your credit records for no charge and make sure that all the information held about you is correct.
See <http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/cgi-bin/viewnews.cgi?newsid1101485056,23650,#free> this thread from Money Saving Expert.Com for details and while you're at it, sign up to his exceptionally useful free weekly newsletter!
NB I have no connection with this site other than being a satisfied user who has saved large amounts of money on cards, bank accounts, savings accounts and so on!
There could be an IT angle if the planned laws in the Criminal Justice and Immigration Bill 2007 are brought in...
Had the "shocked passer-by who interruped proceedings by shouting at the nocturnal bovine botherer" used their mobile to take a picture for evidence, they would have been in possession of a picture of bestiality which could get them two years in jail and a mention on the Sex Offenders Register unless they could *prove* that they hadn't taken that picture for their own "sexual gratification"!
I'm pleased to see this because it's another nail in the coffin of those who make emotive claims (based on nothing more than wishful thinking or bigotry) that video games/ heavy metal music/ violent porn/ roleplaying games/ other misunderstood scare story of the week "cause" people who play them to shoot up US high schools/ commit suicide/ perform acts of sexual violence/ have no social skills and thus should be banned.
It is becoming increasingly clear from credible research like this that these sorts of things actually provide an *outlet* for feelings and emotions that would otherwise end up being bottled up until they erupt into something truly dangerous.
> the general public, by definition, can't understand all the finer points of every potential government policy,
The general public don't really get a chance to understand anything but the broadest points of a potential government policy and even when they *do* find out something they don't like the get patted on the head and told "now you just be obedient little sheeple and keep watching the TV and we'll get on with the important stuff, like ignoring anyone who disagrees with us".
> that is why we vote based on the general policies of a party.
We get *one* chance every four to five years to have our say on what the Government does. They, in turn, parlay that one vote into "well they voted for us and it's in our manifesto, so obviously the people want it", whereas people may have simply voted *against* another party or voted *for* the party in power "because that's what my parents did".
We now have the capability for the public to influence government in a way that hasn't existed since Athens. We shouldn't squander it.
> Some things are just wrong.
Are they? Well, yes, I think the Big Brother TV series is "just wrong". I think that Celebrity Culture is "just wrong", I think that talentless people getting paid huge salaries is "just wrong", but just because I don't like them doesn't mean I call for them to be banned.
You say you like "normal porn"? What do *you* define as "normal" and how arrogant do you have to be to think that you can define "normal" for everyone else as well?! Don't forget that homosexuality was defined as "abnormal" up until fairly recently, based on "community standards" that considered it "abhorrent". Is that the sort of example you think we should follow?
> a generally acceptable consensus on what is way past being normal is pretty easy.
Sure, in fact it's not just "pretty easy" it's *really* easy! Unfortunately when that "consensus" is decided by media who see opportunities to sell more papers by simultaneously acting as the "moral voice of the outraged public" and, at the same time, pandering to the lowest common denominator, you can't help but note the faintest hint of hypocrisy!
> People having various forms of consensual sex: adults only.
> Children, animals, sexual violence: wrong.
Children and animals cannot consent.
An adult, however, *CAN* consent to having someone perform acts of "sexual violence" upon their person because they are an *adult*, just as they can stand in a boxing ring and consent to have someone try to punch their brains out of their ears!
Don't ever make the mistake of thinking that what *your* standards are should be the standards for *everyone* (well, not unless you're going into politics!)
> So, would a movie of a woman having her nipple or clit pierced, and her letting out a blood curdling scream, constitute "extreme" pornography?
No, as long as there was no "sexual gratification" involved!
If you don't enjoy it, that's fine. If you do, you're committing an offence.
Stupid, isn't it?!
> ...El Reg readers aren't out of their minds and so this legislation shouldn't affect them.
No, I am not "out of my mind", I am, however, a responsible adult who doesn't need the Nanny State to tell me that "You can't look at this in case you do something nasty!"
This law will cover material which is entirely legal in pretty much the rest of Europe and the USA, yet the British* Government thinks it can't trust its people not to be turned into deranged killers if they see this stuff!
*Ironically Scotland may not even bring in its version of this law, so we'll have a Scottish Prime Minister bringing in a law to only affect the English and Welsh and Irish!
I am very disappointed to see that Outlaw.com seems to have just trotted out the Government's line in this article and not looked further at the dangers this law presents:
Here is a link to the relevant part of the CJIB 2007:
The Government statement does not reveal the sheer *subjectivity* of the proposed law: It will be enough to define "extreme" if it *appears* "likely to result in serious injury to the anus, breasts, or genitals" and it will be deemed to be "pornographic", if, in someone's *opinion*, it is "for the purposes of sexual arousal"
This also completely bypasses the Obscene Publications Act which has a more stringent test of requiring a Court to determine that the material is "liable to corrupt or deprave" (possibly because the authors of this law have a clear anti-porn agenda and are fed up with the Courts saying "no, this isn't obscence", so they want something that makes it easier for them to ban anything they don't want us to see).
The Government say "The new law is designed to take account of the context of images, and recognises that an image which might seem to constitute extreme pornography in isolation may not do so in a wider context." well, no, that's not actually what the law says: in fact is says quite the opposite!
If you were to watch a BBFC classified film like Saw, Hostel or Captivity and to take a screen capture and someone was to decide that that image fitted the above definitions of "extreme" and "pornographic", then the law says you will have committed a criminal offence which could get you three years in jail! (I hope all those burglars and druggies who have been let out early left the place tidy...)
The Government's comments about "The material has not been illegal to view or possess, though; the new law will make possession a crime. Images of child pornography are already illegal to view or to possess." are nothing more than a huge red herring.
Child pornography is covered under its own, entirely separate, legislation. Apart from State Secrets there are *NO* other classes of image which are illegal to possess, yet the Government wishes to extend the law into an entirely new area by creating a completely false association in the mind of the reader, implying that this will somehow "protect children" even though the images that will most likely be affected will feature consenting adults *acting out* fantasy scenes (which also gives the lie to their implication in the Bill that this would protect adults from being forced into "degrading acts". We're consenting adults, we can make up our own minds about whether we're being degraded, thank you Nanny!)
For more details on the dangers of this law and how it may, quite by accident, affect you, see http://www.backlash-uk.org.uk/
To write to your MP to object to a needlessly draconian law that will risk criminalising adults for looking at "Dangerous Pictures" visit http://www.theyworkforyou.com
Sure, cases such as Victoria Climbie were tragic but they are by far the *exception* rather than the rule.
If someone is possibly at risk, then the groups involved (Social Services et al) could make a request to have that person's data shared, but what this system is proposing is that *everyone's* data be treated in this way as if we are *all* at risk.
Of course what we are really all at risk from is the widespread abuse of our data and it being shared in ways that we don't want and which are *not* to our benefit.
So please don't try the Appeal to Pity fallacy, those "emotional blackmail" arguments simply won't hold water.
> I just think we need to be careful. Could you imagine how life destroying it would be to be wrongly accused of being a paedophile? or any other type of criminal for that matter based on files in your internet cache.
Ask the thousands who were the victims of Operation Ore. See Inquisition 21 for more details: http://www.inquisition21.com/
As far as the Police and CPS were concerned, the merest suspicion was tantamount to guilt and grounds for perse^H^H^H^H rosecution.
Now, in the latest Criminal Justice and Immigration Bill, the Government has decided that if you take a screen capture from a film legally classified as 18 by the BBFC but, in someone's *subjective* opinion it is a "extreme image" (ie *appears* to threaten someone's life) and it is "pornographic", ie, again in someone's subjective opinion, you captured it "for sexual arousal" you have just committed a criminal offence which can get you three years in jail!
So better check all your screen caps, folks, before you get that knock at the door...
> I'll say a little prayer that you aren't hit by the next Islamist attack. And, mostly, I'll say a big prayer that I might be able to hate leftist dumbasses a little less.
And whilst you're doing that, pray that Gordon Brown isn't going to use this as an excuse to whittle away our basic Rights and Freedoms a little more.
"Following this attack, here is a list of changes I'm going to make that was prepared earlier by the Security Services who have just been waiting for another opportunity to get even more information on everyone and consider them suspects..."
"the FTC's Internet Access Task Force accepted arguments posed by cable and phone companies that government intervention in Net Neutrality is unnecessary, as competition would prevent internet providers from taking advantage of customers.
“[...] chairman Deborah Majoras said. "In the absence of significant market failure or demonstrated consumer harm, policy makers should be particularly hesitant to enact new regulation in this area.”
So they *don't* want to pass legislation that *would* stop internet providers from "taking advantage of customers"?
Presumably, then, restrictive practices, cartels, oligarchies, price fixing and so on, all of which have turned up in other such industries and which represent "significant market failure" and "consumer harm" and which have required regulation to stop, somehow won't happen in this case and should not be pre-empted?
Err, yeah, right...
A few weeks ago I used a Torrent system to download an episode of the excellent TV show Heroes.
Because my Sky+ Box crashed and I lost the recording and couldn't pick up another one off Sci-Fi channel and I didn't want to miss a bit of a great show.
Ironically, I could have downloaded a copy of the episode that I missed from the Producers' website, but *ONLY* if I lived in the USA!
I buy goods for my business from a couple of manufacturers in Pakistan and I pay by Bank Transfer.
If I pay more than £1000, I have to provide proof of ID before my Bank will allow the transaction through to make sure I'm not money laundering or funding terrorism or some such.
I don't doubt that this probably also now flags me up on some US DHS Watch List such that they would want to ask me a lot of questions were I to travel there.
Hmm, another reason not to go to the USA, then...
How about all those mail server operators out there having to check the validity of headers before they send out "undeliverable mail" or similar bounce messages?
A couple of months ago someone started forging spam from my business domain and in just one week I received over 4,000 "delivery failure" e-mails.
Not only that, it seems that some legitimate business e-mails I *had* sent had been filtered out by servers which said "hello, we're getting lots of spam from this domain, let's block *all* messages from it" which meant that customers were contacting me to check whether their orders had been received.
Some of the problem with spam is not the spam itself, but the results of that spam :-(
> All too often fraudsters are using these free e-mail services to sign up for products or goods using other peoples contact information.
Unless a hosting company is required to send you a letter which you then have to reply to with a utility bill and your passport or driving licence (originals, of course, not copies!) in order to get an account with them, what's to stop the fraudsters from signing up to the e-mail account using the same information??
And if fraudsters are trying to buy goods, simply state that they'll only be sent to the registered card address instead of a "mail drop" which is equally untraceable.
> All in the name of an unproven theory.
Let's just leave the idea of whether Global Warming is Man Made or not and consider the following:
1) Global Warming is a myth or it won't have the effects claimed and we do nothing.
Result - Nothing changes.
2) Global Warming is a myth or it won't have the effects claimed and we endeavour to reduce our energy consumption and seek alternatives to fossil fuels etc.
Result - Less pollution, lower energy demand, less waste.
3) Global Warming isn't a myth and it will have the effects claimed but we do nothing.
Result - Environmental and humanitarian catastrope, people in low lying countries like Bangladesh are displaced, global weather patterns get more extreme (because there's more energy in the system) huge effects on crop growth etc especially in equatorial areas.
4) Global Warming isn't a myth and it will have the effects claimed and we endeavour to reduce our energy consumption and seek alternatives to fossil fuels etc.
Result - Less pollution, lower energy demand, less waste, reduced environmental impact, humanitarian catastrophe, weather effects etc.
So that's two positive results, one neutral and one disaster.
Still, as long as Tony Humphreys doesn't have to put his hand in his pocket, he's alright....
> "What do I have to hide?" he said with a shrug. "Because all that information is elsewhere, I'm not worried about publishing it."
So he makes a graph available that shows power consumption in his home?
Whilst he might have, say, automatic time-switched lights to make it look as if the house is occupied, a canny burglar could note that more serious power consumption, eg showers(!) didn't take place over several days and thus figure that the place is actually unoccupied and thus there's lots of unprotected computer gear just waiting to be pinched...
Oops! I think someone's ass might have just been bitten.
> Brown wanted to do what he could to help protect people's "fundamental right to be safe and secure"
By taking away the right to be Presumed Innocent, the right to Freedom of Expression, the right to Protest, the right to Go About Your Lawful Business Without Let or Hinderance, the right to...
> "I'm sure somebody will correct me if I'm wrong but surely it's only an offence for someone in the UK to sell a banned title. What can the British Government do if somebody in France buys a load of copies and sells them over the net?"
What can they do? Damn all, that's what!
It's illegal to sell R18 material in the UK without a sex shop licence, but you can quite legitimately buy it from abroad and have it posted to you in the UK.
All this does is hamstring British businesses whilst doing nothing to affect the trade.
Still, as long as our Government can say that they're trying to "protect" us...
Some time very soon the Government are going to be publishing their next Criminal Justice Bill which they seem to want to rush through Parliament (without, of course, proper scrutiny or debate) before it rises for the summer as part of Blair's "Legacy" (read: Attacks on basic rights and freedoms).
I would urge all readers who don't want to see their freedoms whittled away to nothing to write to their MPs via www.theyworkforyou.com and require them to vote down the draconian proposals in the CJB which will most probably even include the right for the Government to jail people for possessing pictures they don't like.
Of course the Government have been clever enough to "bury" this as a plan to outlaw "extreme and violent pornography" in the hope that nobody would stand up and defend that, but what they don't mention is that the "Legislative Reform Act" (aka the Abolition of Parliament Act!) will then allow them to make changes to the law by Ministerial fiat *without* even consulting our elected representatives in Parliament at all.
First they came for the pornographers, then they came for the political cartoonists...
I'll have you know that I'm no doubt already on *several* Government watch lists having not only posted messages on discussion forums objecting to Government Policy but *also* having signed up to to-be-ignored petitions on the Number 10 Website *and* having responded to also-to-be-ignored Home Office Consultations!
Clearly, therefore, I'm a threat to society and the country and the Government and if my tax money is *not* being used to pay for a black helicopter to hover over my house and scan me on infra-red then I want to know about it!!!
If these people are guilty, that's all very well, but this is the same Jim Gamble who suggested criminalising 16 and 17 year olds for performing "sex acts" in front of webcams!
How exactly will that "protect" children?
Also at the end of the CEOP article it says:
"Use of the phrase ‘child pornography’ actually works to the advantage of child sex abusers: [...]
* It conjures up images of children posing in ‘provocative’ positions, rather than suffering horrific abuse
* Every photograph captures an actual situation where a child has been abused. This is not pornography.[/quote]
Of course it also fails to distinguish between *actual* abuse and innocent photographs. Ask Julia Somerville for details about how she was questioned by Police after staff in Boots the Chemists decided that pictures of her and her kids in the bath were "child pornography".
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