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From The Socialist newspaper, 5 June 2013

Crackdown on democratic rights

Derek McMillan

For the first time ever, Britain's home secretary Theresa May revealed on 2 June that since 2010, nearly 5,700 separate articles and websites have been taken off the internet by the UK government.

The excuse for this is the war on terror. So any website thought to be encouraging terrorism (or supporting animal rights, apparently!) can be taken down by the government.

At the same time the government has utilised the revulsion following the Woolwich killing to seek to read all your emails and mine.

Privacy campaign group Big Brother Watch says police already have the ability under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (Ripa) to demand communications data - "who sent what to whom from where and when" - from internet and phone companies on terror and serious crime suspects.

494,078 such requests were made by police and security services in 2011 alone.

Experts have pointed out that increased draconian powers will actually make it harder to combat terrorism because the police will have to wade through oceans of information to find what they actually need to know. This suggests that the 'war on terror' is a smokescreen.

The government wants to use the horror and fear of terror attacks to gather more authoritarian powers.

These could be used to clamp down on opposition to the cuts. As ever the trade union movement and the left will be among the targets of any clampdown. The government know who their real enemies are.

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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

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In The Socialist 5 June 2013:


Socialist Party news and analysis

Food bank Britain: Con-Dems turn the clock back

NSSN conference : Unite to fight all the cuts

Legal aid cuts: Justice in the balance

Continued deterioration of the Labour Party

Them & Us


Youth feature

Mass joblessness wrecks lives! Youth must fight for a future

A day in the life of a Primark employee


NHS feature

NHS crisis: Turn anger into action


International socialist news and analysis

Turkey: Mass movement challenges Erdogan's authoritarian government


Socialist Party workplace news

PCS rolling strike programme

97% vote for strike action at Carling brewery

Thera Trust: the campaign moves up a gear

Unison and Labour: Welsh government cuts are still cuts

Lecturers' union UCU members vote to fight austerity

Workplace news in brief


Socialist history

1983: A political voice for the working class


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Campaigning against the bedroom tax

Stopping the BNP in London

EDL blocked by counter demo

Standing for TUSC in Woolston, Southampton

Save the Independent Living Fund

Needed: new social housing NOT unaffordable rents

Support the Fighting Fund collectathon!

Socialist Party national organisers' school


Readers' comments

Stop drone attacks!

Crackdown on democratic rights


 

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Related links:

Democratic rights:

triangleResist attacks against free speech on campus

triangleLeicester Kashmir protest rejects religious smokescreen

triangleHong Kong protests: No let-up in trial of strength

triangleKashmir crisis: Stop the attack on democratic rights

triangleThe Peterloo Massacre 1819: When a fearful ruling class tried to crush working-class political aspirations

Government:

triangleSchools aren't safe

triangleChinese state's imposition of draconian law reignites Hong Kong protests

triangle1920s Britain: A "country nearer Bolshevism than at any time since"

triangleGoing viral - Socialist comments and letters

Terror:

triangleGermany: Right-wing terror attacks - fight racism, fight capitalism!

triangleStreatham attack: Johnson's bill can't stop terror

triangleProtesting is not terrorism

Police:

triangleOutrage spreads globally following US police murder of George Floyd

triangleIrish police use Covid-19 emergency powers to disperse Dublin shop workers' protest

Internet:

triangleJohnson's Huawei internet deal underlines world trade tensions

Privacy:

triangleGDPR data laws: Punishing workers for human mistakes

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