The Retrenchment of the Surveillance State

Alex Deane in the New Statesman points to an interesting element of the wonderfully solipsistic Strategic Defence Review published on Thursday.

He points, quite rightly to the, apparent reversal of the Coalition’s stated aim of rolling back the intrusive surveillance apparatus maintained by the previous government.  A noble and commendable aim one might think.  Except that they are doing precisely the opposite.  The Defence Review retains the previous policy requiring communications providers to collect and retain data about individuals and crucially, to hand it over to the authorities when requested in a continuance of the Intercept Modernisation Programme in all but name.

I wonder if the surveillance state is simply too expensive to roll back and can be subsumed under the “deficit deficit…all in this together…make sacrificies etc…” as well?


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