Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Speaking of George Orwell

As per my post below, it seems that Ireland's very own big brother, Justice Minister McDowell, has gone out of his way to use language to pull the wool over our eyes yet again.

Speaking in the Dail last week he presented the Criminal Justice (Mutual Assurance) Bill in Irish! Quite a cynical move to ensure the people who are most concerned about intrusions on privacy, eg Digital Rights Ireland and the average citizen, have as much trouble as possible in understanding its impact. The grammar of Irish he used was commented on by TD Michael D Higgins as of very poor quality and quite hard to understand. MDH himself being a life long Irish speaker is well qualified to comment.

The Bill itself allows any European police/security force to spy on citizens of any other EU country without notifying the Government in which they are carrying out the activity. There is a clause to seek "retrospective permission" but by then it is too late as they privacy rights of the citizen have already been violated.

And further highlighting how undemocratic the EU is: The Human Rights Commission, for example, has expressed concern that these measures are negotiated in Brussels with no advance input from the commission or from anyone else. By the time a framework decision is agreed and comes before the Oireachtas, it is too late to do much more than tinker with it.

You would think that something like this would cause a bit of a storm in the media, but alas once again the media are largely silent. With the only press coverage being so far from the Sunday Tribune and the Irish Times,both commenting on the privacy issues of the Bill and its unusual presentation by McDowell.

Sunday Tribune link to article
Irish Times link to article from Monday, reproduced here without need to log in
Irish Times link to article from Tuesday, reproduced here without need to log in


Blogger Limerick Hater said...

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Wednesday, March 08, 2006 1:21:00 p.m.  

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