Now that I am retired having been many years a magistrate with a long awareness of the declining freedoms enjoyed by the ordinary citizen and a corresponding fear of the big brother state`s ever increasing encroachment on civil liberties I hope that my personal observations within these general parameters will be of interest to those with an open mind. Having been blogging with this title for many years against the rules of the Ministry of Justice my new found freedom should allow me to be less inhibited in these observations.

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Friday, 12 June 2015


I would guess that most readers who are gracious enough to give me an hour of their time when they access this site (25%) and others just passing through are to some degree political animals and their political antenae are likely to be quivering at the event horizon between privacy and security.  The fangs available to the so called snoopers` charter have been called into question by the report of David Anderson QC.  An interesting piece of information in The Times behind its paywall reveals that "Home Secretary Theresa May personally authorised 2,345 interception warrants last year".  That equates to nine every working day.  J.P.s and others will be only too aware of how long it takes to approve or reject a simple search warrant under the latest rules. Reading the information, questioning the applicant and formulating reasons for granting or rejecting such a document rarely takes less than 15 minutes. It is just not credible that Mrs May can personally apply the time and consideration required to adequately assess matters of suspected terrorist or dangerous criminal activity.  Her minions will have made the decisions prior to requesting her signature.  This is reminiscent of the Stasi.  The film "Lives of Others" should be compulsory viewing for D.Cameron and others.  Apparently he and the Whitehall cohort amongst other considerations "are also concerned  about the availability of judges to authorise warrants in the middle of the night in an emergency"...(The Times today 12/6/2015 behind its paywall.)  I have rarely read such  pathetic rubbish even from Whitehall weasels;  people attempting to excuse the inexcusable.

If ever there was a time, convention or no convention, when senior judiciary should be making clear their position this is it. Perhaps they are behind closed doors.  I suppose we will know the results before too long. 

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