(Disclaimer: Conservative for 20+ years, liberal before that.)
I have 2 blanket statements to make about conservatives, liberals and surveillance.
BS#1: "Any conservative candidate that survives into office will expand the surveillance state as much as possible."
I think most honest conservatives and liberals would agree with that statement.
BS#2: "Any liberal candidate that survives into office will expand the surveillance state as much as possible."
Here's where it gets weird.
Conservatives - They tend to be pro-surveillance and anti-liberal. I wouldn't want an opinion born from that mix.
Liberals - I don't know what to think about liberals. I suspect that as long as a Dem candidate is breaking some kind of social barrier (female, LGBT, whatever), most liberals will enthusiastically believe any campaign promise made about surveillance reform and transparency.
Candidate Obama had an extraordinarily good mindset about Surveillance, in 2007. However, Obama's conversion to the Surveillance-Dark-Side began before he was even elected. By the time Pres Obama was a year into office, he was fully turned.
In my opinion, far too many liberals are in denial about this.
Since conservatives are on the wrong side of the surveillance issue and (afaik) liberal ideology abhors a surveillance state then we need our liberals to denounce and help roll back constitutional surveillance.
But if liberals will only acknowledge surveillance abuses under a Republican PotUS, they are (at best) as bad as conservatives.
Hollywood's war on consumers is more about content control than anything else.
It's why MPAA Members sued CleanFlicks and other film sanitizers out of existence even though those services clearly benefited film makers' bottom line.
Netflix has some of that same dysfunction by their decade long refusal to implement a search by rating, even though it's a top requested feature.
Netflix may have looser reins but they still like to hang on to some of that "Just Because" control.
"Criminals and terrorists now have access to a dizzying array of information, with devastating implications"
Most people on the planet have access to "a dizzying array of information" and yes, a few of them are criminals and terrorists. However, the devastating implications that worries power brokers isn't really tied to the safety of citizens.
I'll rehash the 'Internet = Wild West' analogy and remind Mr. Clegg that new frontiers are always a bit uncivilized. In America's Wild West, the higher risks were eventually mitigated by building safer institutions, not by intimidating the civilian population with government thuggery and a layer of constant surveillance.
I will grant that there were times when 19th Century American Government did over-flex it's muscles. Usually it involved sending the Military in to slaughter and relocate inconvenient Native Americans, often in response to deep-pocketed campaign donors who wanted the land for their own purposes.
Mr. Clegg can easily find parallels in Britain's own colonial history. (Assuming his look at history consists of more than cherry picked details from a rewritten past.)