We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

I work for the Police and I for one think this is a fantastic idea along with every other scheme that is or is threatened to be brought in ot fight this insidiuos and invisible fight against terrorism. I can’t wait to change my title from Constable to Stasi…

– Robert Pangborn, a commenter on an article Social network sites ‘monitored’

12 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Ian B

    I hope they print a “selection” of my comment, just submitted-

    “I think an important step in retaining public confidence would be for a requirement that the private communications, including telephone calls, emails and letters, of all politicians should be made public so that they may be scrutinised properly. Currently there is a serious deficit in the public’s ability to monitor the activities of politicians, which represents a clear threat to public security.

    There should be no problem with doing this, as we can be sure that they have nothing to hide, can we not? I hope nobody is so antisocial as to suggest some “right” to “privacy”. If ordinary people do not need so-called-privacy, what possible reason can public figures need it for? This will also help to demonstrate to the publicly dispirited masses the benefits of being offered the opportunity of becoming “privacyfree”. I hope there will be an expensive advertising campaign depicting “private people” as barely human trolls, and warning of the dangers of “passive privacy”. Perhaps the BBC could uncritically publish some press releases from special interest groups who toil with only a few millions of taxpayers’ pounds at their disposal to rid us of the last vestiges of this conservative relic, “privacy”.

    I have complete and utter confidence in Gordon Brown and his government, to whom I have a shrine in my home. I would willingly give them everything I own, and hope one day I will be offered the opportunity to die for them, like the ungrateful worm that I am.”

  • Just wait until she has her own private army.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    Well, that commenter should get acquainted with a spellchecker.

  • Arthur Daily

    Well, that commenter should get acquainted with a spellchecker.

    Yeah that’s really important cos perfect spelling is much important that making suitable comments on our vanishing civil liberties.

  • Arthur, you got that right!

  • Ian B

    The other point here is, once you have the government demanding data retention you’re piling costs onto business. Now facebook might be able to afford that, but suppose everyone running wordpress on their own domain is required to keep records in a manner suitable to the government? How many amateurs and small-timers can afford the time and money to do that? Their casual blog turns into a commitment.

    The small guys drop out. People are forced onto the big sites whose owners can be called into the Interior Ministry for a “chat”.

    It’s not just about the privacy issue. It’s also about corporatisation- turn a large, diverse, difficult for governments to control sector into one with only a few large, tame, players.

  • Paul Marks

    No prizes for guessing which side dyslexic me is on in the spelling debate – although J.P. could say “Paul, you can spell check – you do not because you are lazy, at least when you are not being paid” and he would have a point.

    Thousands of citizen activists trained to help the organs of the state – you must be starting to see familar things Addriana.

    British liberty has long depended on various cultural practices and conventions (habits really) – rather than any clear understanding of principle.

    The American P.E. Moore (the teacher of T.S. Eliot) noted this as far back as the 1930’s In the United States liberty was under attack from the New Deal, but defenders of freedom argued from principle (and they still do) so tactical defeats did not mean the struggle was over.

    In Britain hardly anyone argues from principle (or even has an understanding of what pro freedom principles are) so the culture is gradually changed by various interventions – and there is no real hope of a fightback (because people would not know what they were fighting back for).

    It is irritating.

  • Arthur has a point, of course, but still, spelling is important if one wants to be taken seriously by people who who are not automatically open to his ideas.

  • Enough. Any more comments about spelling will be deleted.

  • Ian B – corporatism. Dead right.

    Regulations push out and keep out new entrants. It is ladder kicking, and in this case the ladder is not just their means to climb, but was our means of escape.

  • Ian B:(Link) That is good, comrade, but still some might question your patriotism. I, however, have donated my firstborn, and will rename all my other children “Gordon” and “Jacki”.