Today the Brits are putting up a motion to curb their end of the spying racket…  The proponent putting up the piece that should get wide spread support, is of course… a liberal democrat….

The bill –  would make sure Britain’s spy agencies could never intercept calls or data without a specific warrant . Furthermore, is sets up a demand that the parliamentary regulatory body which oversees intelligence gathering, be made up not of secret appointees, but be chosen by an open election on the floor of the House of Commons.

“We’re very conscious of the need not to prevent the security services doing their work, but there are certainly gaps in the law. That much is clear.” says the pusher of that bill,  Mr.David Health.

Quotes from the Floor…

“But any surveillance and any clandestine operation in a democracy raises questions, he says. These can’t be answered by the agencies or the executivebut only by the legislature. Such as: where are the boundaries between privacy and legitimate intelligence gathering? What controls are in place to prevent abuse? Where are the limits of secrecy? How does our legislation and capability measure up to the latest technology? How comprehensive is the scrutiny and legal framework?”

“He has received assurances from ministers that the security services are not acting outside the law – but the law cannot keep up with their capabilities,”

“We need to deal not only with direct interception of communications but also collection of communications metadata. That is “an area where the law is silent.  We need to deal with the UK collection and that of allies,”

“The security services cannot police themselves”, he says.  “Their focus is on doing the best possible job – the job of parliament is to set the proper boundaries for their work”, he says.

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In summary the ideas are sound… One cannot be unbiased when monitoring ones self.  That we ever thought so is madness.  It is therefore paramount that we follow some of the Brits’ ideas over here and make those who are in charge of our intelligence also be voted from the floor of Congress in a public debate as is any law or appointment,  and not be appointed in private by the head of  the legislative body with no accountability…

Furthermore,  having a true court hearing and not a rubber stamp session each time when approving the wiretapping or Constitutionality of data collection, would impact greatly on the credibility of any legitimate act of data extraction performed in the future….

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