Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Hurray for Sir Ken and Dame Stella

'We must not degrade our liberties in the name of defending them' writes the outgoing Director of Public Prosecutions, decrying the giant database plan as the paraphenalia of paranoia. The Telegraph is in full agreement.More reporting from the Times and elsewhere

As the Independent blogger Archie Bland points out

' ... the really startling chorus of opposition to the raft of illiberal policies that has characterised this government is that which has emerged from the security establishment.
It's former MI5 heads Stella Rimington and Eliza Manningham-Buller speaking out against 42 days, and senior members of the Association of Chief Police Officers saying the same thing. It's former Prison Service director general (now Barnado’s Chief Executive) Martin Narey decrying the rate at which we incarcerate children, or Prison Governors Association president Paul Tidball on the government's decision to build Titan prisons 'in the face of unanimous opposition from professional and expert groups'. And it's Brian Gladman, a former director of strategic electronic communications at the Ministry of Defence and US government security consultant, saying that ID cards would be a disaster.
The list goes on. These people are not partisans. They're professionals. They're experts. If anyone is going to have sympathy with the impulse to 'go quite a long way' in undermining freedom to stop terrorism (another Hoonism) and crime and benefit fraud, it is surely them. And if even these people think the government has got it wrong, one has to ask: who on earth does the government consult when it formulates this stuff?'


Quite

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