Recent Detention (28 days) Articles

So what was wrong with 42-days?

by ukliberty     October 17, 2008 at 2:00 pm

The real issue with 42 days is that the Government has failed to make a convincing case for extending detention without charge by any number of days, let alone 42 – and its ‘arguments’, such as they are, are equally applicable to indefinite detention, which (strangely) isn’t on the table – yet it continues to press the issue.

Any proposal to extend this period smacks of an attempt to outflank the other parties. Opponents have been accused of “playing politics” and “trivial grandstanding” – well, six weeks detention isn’t trivial, and caring about the rights of suspects isn’t playing politics.

The argument that there are lots of mobile phones, computer disks, paperwork etc to examine seems a little specious: we know from computer analysts that the police aren’t particularly selective, that they seem to prefer fishing expeditions; also, we don’t need to hold someone while we examine their effects, and we don’t need to return this evidence after 28 or 42 days. This seems more of a question of man-hours and being more clever about searches. As for encryption, apparently you can forget about breaking decent encryption in a reasonable amount of time, so that’s equally an argument for 42 years as it is for 42 days.

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Abort Gordon

by Kate Belgrave     September 9, 2008 at 6:08 pm

Evening all. Tremendous to see our comrades in the Green party embracing the notion of extending abortion rights to Northern Ireland when the Human Fertilisation and Embryology bill comes round for its third reading.

The part I’m really looking forward to, though, is watching our comrades in the Labour party try to reconcile any push for Northern Ireland abortion rights with the undoubtedly high expectations of their new and highly reactionary pals in the Democratic Unionist party. Can’t WAIT to see the great Harriet Harman – our very own self-proclaimed champion of women’s rights – pull that one out of her butt. What a result that’ll be for perversion.

You’ll remember the DUP, of course, and the unpalatable details of its recent, greasy love-in with Labour. You’ll remember that DUP MPs agreed to vote with the government on 42 days’ detention, in exchange for – well, in exchange for absolutely nothing apart from job satisfaction if our glorious leader Gordon was telling the truth at the time. continue reading… »

Burnham on Basic Principles

by Robert Sharp     July 25, 2008 at 10:49 am

Culture Secretary Andy Burnham calls for regulation of the Internet to protect the “vulnerable, the poor, and the weak.” From the title of the article, “In a Lawless zone, we must protect the vulnerable” one would think he is talking about paedophiles in chat-rooms, or the 180% rise in phishing, but in fact he is talking about copyright theft.

It is also contentious that the poor are being disadvantaged by the ‘lawless’ internet – One great advantage of the medium is that it reduces the financial barriers of entry into any given business. Putting online regulation in place will surely restore those barriers. Indeed, the proposals to introduce some kind of licence fee to download music looks like a revenue generator for record companies, rather than a measure to help young and creative people who are just starting out, and giving away their music free on MySpace.

But for entirely different reasons, it was the following quote hat caught my eye:

Nothing can be accepted as inevitable. Though technology moves quickly, we can’t abandon basic principles that have stood society in good stead for centuries.

Wasn’t this the precise argument against 42 days detention!?

Davis and Greens win big in Haltemprice

by Sunny Hundal     July 11, 2008 at 2:33 am

David Davis has won the by-election, according to Sky News, with a total of 17,113 votes. The Green Party’s Shan Oakes came second with 1,758 votes, which is also great news.

A BBC News article says turnout was at 35%, much higher than expected and very high for a single-issue election.

Worth noting:
The turnout was comparable to most by-elections.
This was a single issue by-election;
It faced a lot of hostility from the media
It was a very safe seat and Davis had no opponents who could unseat him.

That makes a 35% turnout much higher than expected.
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Public opinion is not behind 42 days

by Stuart Weir     July 9, 2008 at 1:33 am

Gordon Brown is on shakier ground than he thinks on 42 days pre-charge detention for people suspected of terrorist offences.

On the eve of the Haltemprice and Howden by-election, a new ICM poll conducted for the Joseph Rowntree Reform Trust shows most people (60%) think terrorist suspects should be held without charge for no more than the current limit – 4 weeks, or 28 days.

The poll questions on which he relies for his populist gesture politics with our civil liberties ask people whether terrorist suspects should be held for up to 42 days, questions that by their very nature do not fully reflect the possible innocence of those held nor the length of time that they may be held in custody.
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My MP just doesn’t get it

by Kate Belgrave     June 27, 2008 at 1:17 pm

Sorry to butt in here, team, but thought I would take a moment to appraise you of an exchange we’ve had with our nobody Labour MP Joan Ruddock on the 42 days’ detention vote. Thought I might as well share this correspondence, so that you also could kill a few moments on a Friday savouring the kind of limp response former Labour voters get when they approach their local Brownite buttkissing MP on issues of real significance… continue reading… »

Fighting for our civil liberties, post Davis

by Sunny Hundal     June 27, 2008 at 11:15 am

The Green party has put forward a candidate in the by-election against David Davis. Left of David Davis? Check. A left / progressive candidate? Check. Wants to push for even more civil liberties? Check. So the Labour and lefty bloggers must be rising up in support? Erm… well, there’s Neil Harding… and a lot of tumbleweed rolling by.

[update: non-Greens support also from: peezedtee, Dave Cole, Stuart Jefferey, Socialist Unity, Unbeliever, Pamphlet Labour]

Yes, it really does look like many lefties really will cut off their noses to spite their face on this issue. Well, I’m not sitting here praying David Davis fails miserably because the outcome would a vindicated Gordon Brown willing to push it through with the Parliament Act if the Lords reject the 42 days bill as expected.
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The next step for fighting 42 days

by Lee Griffin     June 25, 2008 at 11:58 am

It’s time to stop the bullshit, we’ve now been sitting around for about a week and a half doing little more than bicker about the integrity of a single person while standing around gawking.

The question now should be: what can we do, and can we do it, in a way that can unite those that support and loathe David Davis’ stance?

I’ll be heading on the journey over to London today for the Liberal Conspiracy gathering and hope that this subject can be explored in more depth by those that attend.
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Will New Statesman run a candidate against Davis?

by Sunny Hundal     June 18, 2008 at 2:58 pm

Word reaches me that the New Statesman editors have been looking for a candidate to run against David Davis in the by-election.

You may already be aware that today New Labour announced they wouldn’t stand anyone against Davis. Part of the problem apparently was that the Labour PPC for the area himself was against the 42 days.

Yesterday I was told that New Statesman magazine has been actively looking for someone to stand to the left of David Davis on a platform of even more civil and social liberty.

Its not clear whether they’ve found someone yet. The current edition will go to print today or tomorrow and we’ll know when it hits the news stands.
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In the interests of balance: Why we shouldn’t support David Davis

by Jennie Rigg     June 13, 2008 at 12:57 am

What David Davis did today was not unprecedented, but it was something quite rare. However, I would urge caution on rushing headlong to leap into bed with him and give him our support.
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