The Harper government has announced new legislation through "Public Safety" Minister Peter Van Loan which would require telecommunications and Internet service providers to:
- Install and maintain "intercept-capable" equipment on their networks.
- Provide police with "timely access" to personal information about subscribers, including names, addresses, and Internet addresses, without the need for a warrant.
The cover and justification for this legislation which has been used is that it will be used to capture predators who distribute child pornography and carry out similar criminal activities. The problem with such justification is that in cases like that, telecommunications and Internet service providers already fully co-operate. This new legislation is a blatant attack, an invasion of privacy, and an attack on the civil liberties of the general public. It constitutes restrictions on freedom of expression. I hope civil liberties organizations will speak up.
We all know that Commissar Harper is a control freak in the way he controls his caucus and Cabinet. Now the same has been extended to all Canadians. Police can access your personal information such as name, address, and Internet address without any court warrant. What does that tell you? Big brother, aka Commissar Harper, shall be watching you. Commissar Harper will keep an eye on you if you say something unflattering about him or his regime.
Let me give you an example that someone gave on a news network justifying the legislation. This person said that the police can stop anybody on the road and ask for a driver's license and all the information is already there on that licence and the police is free to access that information. But there is a difference. When police stop someone, that someone can ask the policeman his/her badge number and personal information. If something improper is done by a policeman/policewoman, it can be reported. In the case of the Internet, you would never know who is spying on you and watching you. It has all the personal information about you. If that does not scare the hell out of you then you have unlimited capacity to tolerate violations of your rights.
On another topic, it is sad to see Wingnuterer stop blogging and I hope that Mound of Sound will start blogging again. They are both great bloggers.
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