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David Cameron’s New Thought Police2015-05-22 23:15
You May No Longer Think Wrong Thoughts, Citizen
Shortly after the election victory that probably surprised no-one more than himself, David Cameron launched into explaining to the hoi-polloi what further transmogrification of the State is in store now that he’s got a free hand. He inter alia elated the audience with the following zinger:
“For too long, we have been a passively tolerant society, saying to our citizens: as long as you obey the law, we will leave you alone. It’s often meant we have stood neutral between different values. And that’s helped foster a narrative of extremism and grievance. This government will conclusively turn the page on this
In other words, dear citizen, mafia uncle State will no longer leave you alone if you merely “obey the law”. Your &lldquo;narratives of grievance” henceforth won’t be tolerated anymore!
As one reader remarked, all that’s missing now is Frau Bluecher making her entrance …
Cartoon by Steve Bell
As the Guardian reports, this means that now that the Lib Dems will no longer be able to veto Cameron’s more outlandish ideas, he intends to keep us all safe by fighting terrorism by means of an Orwellian thought police.
“A counter-terrorism bill including plans for extremism disruption orders designed to restrict those trying to radicalize young people is to be included in the Queen’s speech, David Cameron will tell the national security council on Wednesday.
The orders, the product of an extremism task force set up by the prime minister, were proposed during the last parliament in March, but were largely vetoed by the Liberal Democrats on the grounds of free speech. They were subsequently revived in the Conservative manifesto.
The measures would give the police powers to apply to the high court for an order to limit the “harmful activities” of an extremist individual. The definition of harmful is to include a risk of public disorder, a risk of harassment, alarm or distress or creating a “threat to the functioning of democracy”.
The aim is to catch not just those who spread or incite hatred on the grounds of gender, race or religion but also those who undertake harmful activities for the “purpose of overthrowing democracy”.
They would include a ban on broadcasting and a requirement to submit to the police in advance any proposed publication on the web and social media or in print. The bill will also contain plans for banning orders for extremist organizations which seek to undermine democracy or use hate speech in public places, but it will fall short of banning on the grounds of provoking hatred.”
It is actually hard to see what this bill could possibly “fall short of”. Given that any ideas that might be considered to “threaten the functioning of democracy” will require a special police permit to be uttered, we have to wonder if e.g. Hans-Hermann Hoppe’s book Democracy, the God that Failed will be banned in the UK. The definition of “harmful” provided above is quite striking. In order to be deemed too harmful to be tolerated by the thought police one only needs to create a “risk of causing alarm or distress”.
In light of this, we want to take this opportunity to apply for a broadcasting ban on David Cameron. The man is definitely causing us great alarm and distress now that he’s been handed the pants of power.