Freedom

Adrian Farrel : Why Responding to Terrorism with Curtailed Digital Freedom is Wrong

It is hard for anyone to continue the political debate in the aftermath of the events of Monday 22nd may in Manchester. Our thoughts are all occupied with concern for all those affected, and with love for our own children.

But one of the objectives behind this sort of attack is to disrupt our political system, to damage democracy, and cause us to change our way of life. The intention is to instil fear into us all, to cause us to hide and become hostile, to make us different from the open and culturally diverse nation that we are. It is important, as a way to mitigate this attack, that we strengthen the political debate and act to preserve our freedoms, rights, and civil liberties. We cannot bring back those who were killed, and we can only hope that the wounds, both physical and psychological, heal with time, but we can show the terrorists that we will not allow them to take our society down.

Several questions that are close to the centre of Pirate Party politics need to be addressed immediately. They are fundamental to the debate about freedom and yet appear to offer direct methods to reduce the likelihood of future attacks.

1. Information on how to make bombs is available online

It is true that all manner of very horrible things can be found on line. Some can be put to bad uses by people who want to do us harm. Some things are of their nature unacceptable.

In general, where illegal material is hosted on servers in the UK, the police already have powers to have that content removed. No new laws or powers are needed.

FAQ's - Where do You stand on Media Ownership?

We are very fortunate in Sheffield to have an excellent array of local independent online journalists, as well as community radio and TV now. We need to encourage and support these and others to ensure that we have a locally focused free press in the future.

Media barons like Rupert Murdoch have far too much power in our democracy and we need regulation. However, I would like to emphasize that while regulation of media companies when they get to a certain size is important, it is not right for us to enter into a censorship campaign that would choke the press and stifle the free flowing exchange of information.

Conservatives to increase government power, scrap the HRA

Thursday, 2 October, 2014 - 18:00

The Prime Minister has confirmed that future majority Conservative government would repeal the Human Rights act and replace it with a yet undefined “British Bill of Rights”. 

In his speech to the Conservative party conference he said "This country will have a new British bill of rights to be passed in our parliament rooted in our values. And as for Labour’s Human Rights Act? We will scrap it, once and for all.”

Further details were released on jackofkent.com today ahead of a Conservative announcement. Responding to the latest releases:

Have a national curriculum that says 'What' but not 'How'

Schools should have the freedom to choose the teaching methods and materials they feel are most effective to ensure that their students are well equipped once they have completed their education. Decisions about what is taught and how should be as local as possible in all instances, and limitations on local decision making should be kept to a minimum.

Looking forward to 2012

Loz Kaye's picture

Happy New Year.

This time is always a period to look back over the year that has gone, and see what it means for the year to come. At times, it seemed like there was almost too much news in 2011. So many certainties seemed to fall away, perhaps the scariest part of the last 12 months, yet also it shows the future can be different. It is that determination and optimism that characterises the Pirate movement for me.

These days, one of the chief problems that any new movement faces is surviving the first flash of excitement. People's attention spans, particularly online, can be short. During 2011 Pirate Party UK has come the other side of that period stronger in my opinion.

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