Welcome to White Rose, a protest blog collective which looks at the issue of personal freedom and privacy and their erosion in the UK.
Why another blog when Samizdata.net has been increasingly drawing attention to the undermining of individual freedom and privacy? The reason is in the differing objectives. Samizdata.net is about meta-context and changing the way people view their world.
White Rose is about bringing together people from across the political spectrum to oppose invasive government, with specific focus on civil liberties. Its aim is to stimulate debate, offer practical ways to oppose and resist measures that deny personal liberty and encourage practical alternatives to problems that do not abridge individual’s freedom.
During the last year and a half I have become more aware, and more concerned with the stealthy New Labour transformation of the country that I have come to respect and admire. Many qualities of venerable British institutions have been ‘reformed’ out of recognition and, in my opinion, certainly not for the better.
Another disturbing factor is the lack of awareness by the British public of the fundamental changes that their country has been undergoing and the dire consequences these will have on their lives and personal freedom.
Some of the changes originate within the successive governments’ toxic mixture of discredited ideologies and spineless disregard for truth and reality. New Labour, however, has perfected the ‘virtual reality politics’ where facts are spinned until they fit their world-view and policies. Other tectonic changes to the fabric of British society are coming from the EU and reinforced by the government’s drive to let EU engulf the UK.
There are worthy organisations such as Privacy International, Liberty, Statewatch and others, who have been campaigning for the protection of civil liberties and fighting the good fight on a daily basis. We bow to their expertise and presence in the mainstream media and do not intend to duplicate their labours. Nevertheless, we would like to offer them a higher soapbox on which to stand in the blogosphere.
Having been an editor and contributor to Samizdata.net for some time, I have experienced first hand the scope and power of the blogosphere. By power, I mean the blogosphere’s ability to spread ideas, concepts and generate debate. In Samizdataspeak – its meme distribution potential. Recently there have been examples of bloggers reaching into the ‘real world’ but however gratifying this may be, I would not want to base my expectations of White Rose’s success on them.
The idea is to harness the interest of those individuals in the blogosphere (both bloggers and their audiences) who are concerned about erosion of civil liberties by the state. Our objective, ambitious though it may be, is to create a platform and a resource that may eventually extend its reach well beyond the blogosphere.
The motivation is to rally the Anglo part of the blogosphere to chronicle what is happening in the UK and help us make our voices heard. Again, why did we not choose to do this on Samizdata.net? Because it has a particular character and personality, with clearly stated opinions, which may not be palatable to everyone. In fact, we know they are not. However, in this battle we need people from across the political spectrum who oppose the state’s heavy handed imposition on individual freedom. Please join us here on White Rose.
Contributing bloggers can either post here exclusively or cross-post, linking back to original articles on their blogs. That means you can blog as normal and there is no the dilemma of posting either to White Rose or your own blog… you can do both. If things go well, the extra exposure from White Rose could be considerable… The objective is to extend White Rose’s contributors’ reach beyond the blogosphere into the mainstream debate.
White Rose editors are God and God moves in mysterious ways. We welcome erudite and interesting contributions but would like to avoid rants, sweeping generalisations and unfounded statements. Please help us to make a good case against the government’s attempts to strengthen its hold over the civil society.
Contact: email Gabriel Syme at gabriel at samizdata dot net or Perry at pdeh at samizdata dot net.