Dictators Love Secrecy
Looking back. A note I sent to my MP, 10 years ago. I was for freedom then, too… Freedom carries with it some risks. But I am prepared to take the risks of freedom, but not the risks of a silent, hidden, smiling tyranny:
Many thanks for your reply, which I have read and considered. Nevertheless it remains, in my view, un-thinkable that this government should wish to entrench their position of detention without trial and extraordinary rendition, and add to it secret trials with secret evidence. Your position has a kind of logic only if you accept that the original safeguarding decision was the right one, however both the former decision and the further change under current scrutiny sit very uneasily with me, and I think both should be reconsidered. Such moves, which you support, are not on behalf of those governed, but serve to remove scrutiny of those in office. We are expected, laughably considering all the scandal and corruption coming to the fore within government in recent months, to believe that justice and rightness will be done behind closed doors. I am not so gullible.
Your citation that because “the Government cannot bring evidence in its defence it is forced to settle claims with individuals whose case may be spurious” seems to indicate the real direction of this bill, to deny proper open justice in the first instance, and then to get free away with it. It seems to me that the cost of paying for possibly spurious claims is a small price to pay to prevent yet one more aspect of a free nation becoming locked behind closed doors. Government should have considered this position with their former bill, if they now believe the financial price is too high, they should return to the principles of freedom and openness they originally diverted from. Your claim that paying compensation to “suspected terrorists” risks millions of pounds of money going back to terrorist activities only highlights the wrongness of the original bill. I was never in favour of selling out my common law rights because of the threat of those “suspected”, and now the foolishness of supporting that view creates a problem that you insist means we need to give further freedom away.
As I said before such secrecy is a hallmark of dictators and oppressors of their own people. That victims of the current system are awarded compensation at all indicates that the hallmark is becoming a reality. The step to keep this reality even more hidden is not one I can support. Your position, boiled down, logically asks us which set of rogues to trust with our safety, the unknown demonised suspect terrorists, or the known corrupt self serving government? Shall I toss a coin?
I therefore ask you to reconsider your position, to take a stand for freedom, and oppose this bill.
I find my support for the conservative party wanes as I realise it does not uphold the freedom so many died for, only a different kind of tyranny to the one they claim to protect us from.
Well, it definitely did wane. I became a libertarian.