Sunday, 11 April 2010

Election Week One - In My Bag Is

An interesting week, if somewhat tedious, full of grinning politicians and glaring Gordon. I'll be doing this weekly post up to election day, essentially reading the news so you don't have to. It's a thankless task at the moment.
  • The Digital Economy Bill was thrust through parliament, with little debate. Quite why it couldn't be scrutinised by the next parliament, given the concessions made by minsters. i.e restrictions on the activities of persistent copyright offenders will not come into force for a year. Instead indicative of New Labour, it was ushered along with little regard for due process. Finish how you started then. Its about the only consistent thing New Labour have done. Shamefully undemocratic and draconian.
  • Brown spent some time this week promoting the utopian crime free future of a DNA state. The wonderful Shami Chakrabarti, director of Liberty, challenged him:
    It has been suggested that the tragic case of Sally Anne Bowman was only solved because her murderer was 'an innocent' on the database. In fact, he was arrested for a separate violent offence and it was then that his DNA was matched to the crime scene.
So taking the DNA of those convicted or arrested for crimes worked then? Who would have thought that if you had a targeted approach to collecting or retaining DNA, rather than an indiscriminate approach, it could be affective.
    • Tories have pledged to erase the historic convictions of all those found guilty of consensual gay sex. This is with regard to several changes to the law over the years, yet due to that not being retroactive, there are people who have criminal records for homosexuality. This is a good idea, to tar people as a sex offender for having a consensual relationship, is just disgraceful. Though I don't imagine it being a large amount of people, it's the right, fair and just thing to do for them. I at last give my full support to a Tory policy.
    • Jack Straw will face the mother of Gary McKinnon as she stands as a candidate for his Blackburn seat. She's wants to protest against Labour's erosion of civil liberties and the extradition treaty with the US. Good luck to Janis Sharp, though I don't imagine for a moment she will win, it will lead to some very uncomfortable moments for Jack Straw. Priceless.
    Lastly, there were a lot of pledges in theory, smiles, staged photo shoots and "we will consider that" responses from the party leaders. Nothing new, other this pushing of the political wife into the limelight. Which has been nauseating.

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