UK Gov't Losing The Plot: Now Claiming Snowden Leaks Could Help Pedophiles

from the wtf? dept

Having already gone down the crazy path to arguing that journalism can be terorrism if it's "designed to influence a government," in the David Miranda detention lawsuit, the UK government is also claiming that the Ed Snowden leaks may help pedophiles. This seems to be a dystopian updated version of copyright maximalists trying to use child porn to support their own arguments. The general thinking is "just make some sort of nonsensical connection to child porn, and that'll show people how serious this is." The reality is that since most people can think, they realize that there is no connection to child porn, and thus the claim makes no sense. Same thing here, but at an even more bizarre level of insanity.
Paedophiles may escape detection because highly-classified material about Britain’s surveillance capabilities have been published by the Guardian newspaper, the government has claimed.

A senior Whitehall official said data stolen by Edward Snowden, a former contractor to the US National Security Agency, could be exploited by child abusers and other cyber criminals.
How? Uh, don't ask silly questions like that. The government has said "child abusers" so shut up and be scared. The Telegraph article, by David Barrett, admits that the government didn't explain how it made this connection, but then attempts to connect the dots for you:
it is well known that many paedophiles use the internet to share child pornography and to groom potential victims. They also use “peer to peer” groups on the web to communicate with other child abusers.

Any clues about how to evade detection which have been provided by Mr Snowden’s leaks could help paedophiles to cover their tracks.
But, under that argument, any privacy or encryption could be lumped into that same camp. Does David Barrett or the UK government refuse to use SSL on webpages, since encryption can be used to cover the tracks of pedophiles? The argument shows just how painfully desperate the UK government is in this case -- and also how petty and jealous it appears the Guardian's UK competitors have become, in that this is reported as if Snowden's efforts seriously would "help pedophiles."


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 4:36am

    Won't someone PLEASE think of the children!?

    How else are kids supposed to know where the nice men who give them candy live?

    /s

    In all seriousness tho, I don't support pedophiles.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
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    BentFranklin (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 4:52am

    They've gone from three hops in associations to three hops in logic.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
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    Ninja (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 5:10am

    Next in the news: Snowden leaks are helping spread AIDS in Africa. Because reasons.

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 5:45am

    Re:

    It's s rot of like Six Degrees of Separation, only with bad rhetoric.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 5:47am

    No one suppprts pedos.... However sometimes ones enemies want to label you something awful to discredit you. It's happening to me and to drive home their point theyURDERED INNOCENTEN WOMEN AND CHILDREN. I saw something disgisting on the internet that was probably planted there... and I reported it. This is about power and control and that is ALL.

     

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  6.  
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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 5:50am

    Those who scream the loudest, often have the most to hide.
    Your screaming really loudly about pedos, why don't you have a seat... Chris Hansen will be right with you.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
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    TasMot (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 5:54am

    The Multi-Rhetoric Solution

    Well, governments seem to be forgetting the old adage "An Ounce of Prevention is Better than a Pound of Cure". The new logic is that is it better to hide in dark rooms and secretly watch everybody (who are these perves) than to let everybody know they are being watched.

    Because you know, the bad guys are extremely stupid and don't know that all the major Internet lines have been tapped and everybody is being watched.

     

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  8.  
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    Arsik Vek (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 6:05am

    Does David Barrett or the UK government refuse to use SSL on webpages, since encryption can be used to cover the tracks of pedophiles?

    They'd probably like to ban it, yes.

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 6:08am

    For Cameron, when in doubt - use the porn argument. That'll save you.

     

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  10.  
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    That One Guy (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 6:18am

    Hey, you know what else could potentially help child predators/stalkers? Creating massive databases of personal information, allowing the stalking both online and off of people, including children, so if they're going to use that argument, they better get rid of anything along those lines, lest they want to look like the massive hypocrites they are.

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 6:20am

    It's simple

    Two wrongs don't make a right.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 6:21am

    what this is, is the exact same grasping at straws that the USG does. it has done wrong. it has been caught. it knows it has done wrong but will go to any lengths it can to not admit that it is wrong! every other thing, person, agency, whatever is wrong but not the government. and if it gets away with this in court, who knows what will be next? the one further thing it will prove though is that the government is pulling the strings to get courts to rule how it wants! it's doing exactly the same over copyright infringement cases!
    it needs to be careful because things have a nasty habit of coming back and biting in the ass!!

     

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  13. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    out_of_the_blue, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 6:22am

    Mike must WEDGE copyright into every piece.

    "This seems to be a dystopian updated version of copyright maximalists trying to use child porn to support their own arguments."

    Say, do you kids not admire how I wedge in Google now and then? It's part mocking Mike's compulsion to snipe at copyright every wild relation he imagines. -- Mike supports copyright, ya know. That's why he rails at "copyright maximalists" even when the piece has no relation.

    Anyhoo, now that Mike's compulsion to wedge in copyright is established, i'll just point out that Google's business is exactly to help every criminal find what they want on teh internets. -- And it's clear to me that Google's spying helps NSA find political dissidents. It's just a commercial front for NSA: gov't spies are the criminals whom Google mainly helps; rest are just individuals whom we could almost ignore. Spies are all alike.

    Even if that weren't literally true today, NSA won't be able to resist once CISPA or whatever it's called in future "legalizes" Google handing all info over. According to Snowden, NSA now has "direct" access to Google and Facebook servers. They have plans for even more!

    If you don't fight ALL spying now, don't expect to be able to stop it when becomes pervasive enough to alarm you. Corporations don't have any rights, let alone to spy on us and keep the data forever. Stop all spying now.

    So long as "The Market" (if not NSA directly) rewards Google for spying, do you expect it to do LESS of it?

    02:22:35[c-485-8]

     

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  14.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 6:39am

    You know what is worse than a few criminals being able to hide? A government that controls every piece of information the slaves...citizens.. see, and is able to shut down any dissent about what they the government are doing.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 6:42am

    Re: Won't someone PLEASE think of the children!?

    There is a connection to child porn though. The NSA has downloaded the entire collection.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 6:49am

    Re: It's simple

    I call your common sense with the real world.

    Those with the gold make the rules.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
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    Transmitte (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 7:21am

    Eye rolling commencing in 3...2...1..

    Oh yes, lets start ring the "It's for the children bell". No one supports pedophilia or pedophiles FFS. This is plain and simple a move(a bad one at that) to try to discredit Snowden with the lowest common denominator. The public is not as dim witted as those in power wish they were.

    The whole "You're with us or against us" dance GCHQ & NSA are playing is well worn and is failing. Trotting this out has the foul stench of desperation all over it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 7:30am

    Re: Re: It's simple

    Then my entire childhood was a lie.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
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    Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 7:34am

    Re: Re: Re: It's simple

    'fraid so, yes.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
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    JackOfShadows (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 7:36am

    Y'all are missin' somethin'

    The only way this can work, and apparently has worked in the past, is if the national security agencies are actually monitoring the people completely. Not just metadata, but full up interception of everything we do electronically. We've seen the tap-dancing before. Now we get the truth.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 7:41am

    Wow.

    Is Cameron really so desperate to please the US government that he'd pull off this, the saddest and most pathetic smear campaign in recent history? First-graders put more thought into playground insults than Cameron is putting into his mud-slinging.

    When this doesn't work, what next? Is Cameron going to claim Snowden is an alien and his leaks are a Martian conspiracy to conquer Earth? Maybe that Snowden is a time-traveling Hitler and the leaks were actually excerpts from Mein Kampf 2: Sieg Heil Boogaloo? Or perhaps that Snowden is Cthulhu and the leaks are fragments of the Pnakotic Manuscripts?

    Seriously, is there anything Cameron won't say? Any depth left that he hasn't already sunk to?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 7:43am

    Are they so uncreative it never occured to them to play this card before?

    The fact it took them this long to come out with this "argument" just makes it fall flat. If they came out with it right away their lie would be more believable to most (who don't stop to think seriously) than their cornered "Snowden supports pedos!" outburst. Seriously where are their creative liars?

     

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  23.  
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    KingofDarkness, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 7:44am

    Re:

    What?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 7:45am

    Re: Mike must WEDGE copyright into every piece.

    OOTB says.

    As he screams out "GOOGLE".

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  25.  
    identicon
    KingofDarkness, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 7:48am

    Re: Wow.

    +1 for the Lovecraft reference.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 7:57am

    Who knew pedophiles flew into airports on the intrawebz?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  27.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 8:16am

    Now they're just desperate.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  28.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 8:56am

    Re:

    (in a desperate attempt to not look desperate).

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  29.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 9:02am

    Because

    Pedophilia is a top-level national security issue...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  30.  
    identicon
    bshock, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 9:18am

    tailor the scare to the culture

    After 9/11, the words "terrorist" or "terrorism" made every American soil himself and beg you to take away his civil liberties.

    England is different. The English have had to deal with terrorism for a long time. It's frightening to them, but it's not frightening enough to make them self-destructive.

    Pedophilia is a different matter. For whatever reason, the English fear pedophilia above all other horrible things. The mere rumor of pedophilia can cause the English to go insane and start killing people on the vague suspicion that they might be pedophiles (or pediatricians; the word sounds too close for comfort).

    So it's no wonder that the British government is trying to tar Snowden with the pedophilia brush, regardless of what a ridiculous non sequitur that might be.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  31.  
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    Daemon_ZOGG (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 9:20am

    "..UK Gov't Losing The Plot"

    So, now they're using the "think of the children" rant. Since all of their other pathetic excuses have failed. They have certainly 'cried wolf' too many times. Snowden is a hero of the people. He has made us all aware of just how much freedom has been lost in the wake of governmental fear and paranoia.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  32.  
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    Rikuo (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 10:00am

    Re: Mike must WEDGE copyright into every piece.

    Why, if you're so afraid of search engines, do you never and I mean NEVER, call out Bing or Yahoo or any of the other search engines? Yes, Google is the largest and most popular, but why is it only Google who's evil in your book?

     

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  33.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 10:15am

    UK Gov is getting vulgar and offensive in it's circular logic.

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 10:19am

    Hang on...

    Okay, so.... is the British Government finally admitting that GCHQ was spying on its own citizens and secretly using their snooped data to prosecute those citizens for domestic crimes? Or are they only worried about stopping pedophiles in other countries?

     

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  35.  
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    noko, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 10:31am

    Re: Eye rolling commencing in 3...2...1..

    >The public is not as dim witted as those in power wish they were.

    You've never been to the UK, have you?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  36.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 10:31am

    Re:

    Hops in logic can be referred to as cuils.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  37.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 10:32am

    Edward Snowden Leak could help Australia win the Ashes!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  38.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 10:33am

    Re: Re: Mike must WEDGE copyright into every piece.

    I thought Google was the internet?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  39.  
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    DV Henkel-Wallace (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 11:24am

    s/paedophile/driver

    Hit and run drivers may escape detection because highly-classified material about Britain’s surveillance capabilities have been published by the Guardian newspaper, the government has claimed.

    A senior Whitehall official said data stolen by Edward Snowden, a former contractor to the US National Security Agency, could be exploited by motorists and other nonfinancial criminals.

    It could also put lives at risk by disclosing locations of speed cameras to terrorists, doggers and hostile foreign drivers, he said.

    The claims emerged as lawyers for the Home Office launched a hard-hitting defence against a legal challenge which is seeking to establish the partner of a Guardian journalist was wrongly detained at Heathrow airport in August.

    The High Court heard in a statement from Oliver Robbins, the deputy national security adviser for intelligence, security and resilience at the Cabinet Office, that publication of stories based on Mr Snowden’s stolen material had caused “real and serious damage” to national security.

    Revealing the capabilities of MI5, MI6 and the government listening post GCHQ would make it easier for “speeders to evade detection” and for “hostile foreign states to identify our traffic lights and take steps against them”, said Mr Robbins.

    He added that the disclosures risked making it easier for “drivers to cover their tracks online”.

    Mr Robbins’ nine-page statement did not go into detail about how paedophiles would benefit from the Guardian’s stories about the security services.

    However, it is well known that many driver use the internet to share routes and to locate potential destinations. They also use “peer to peer” groups on the web to communicate with other motorists.

    Any clues about how to evade detection which have been provided by Mr Snowden’s leaks could help motorists to cover their tracks.

    Mr Robbins’ statement also said the data risked putting the lives of members of the Armed forces at risk from insurgents overseas who willfuly drive on the wrong side of the road.

    Lawyers for David Miranda claimed the police and security services breached the law when they stopped him at Heathrow airport in August and seized nine electronic devices which contained 58,000 secret documents.

    Edward Snowden

    Mr Miranda, the partner of Glenn Greenwald, a Guardian journalist who has written a series of stories based in the leaks by former CIA contractor Edward Snowden, is also claiming his human rights were breached.

    “It is right that the police should take action when an individual is suspected of driving highly sensitive vehicles that do not use petrol or otherwise support excuses for military adventurism overseas and thus seek to undermine our freedoms,” said Mr Robbins’ statement.

    “There was and continues to be great concern about the potential harm which could result from the travel by miranda to left hand drive states

    “The Security Service believed that the onward transmission of Miranda posed a significant threat to UK national security.”

     

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  40.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 11:40am

    Bye VPNs

    This is just the beginning, it is the argument to ban VPN and other encryption technologies. This is it people, get ready to lose any form of privacy or anonymity you once had.

     

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  41.  
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    MrAnon (profile), Nov 7th, 2013 @ 11:49am

    There are some things I like about this line of argument by HM Gov't. First, if actions "designed to influence a government" are terrorism, then lobbyists are terrorists and should all be sent to Gitmo. YAY! Of course, citizens writing a letter to their Congressman/MP would also fit the definition but hey - omelet, meet eggs. Protests for or against gov't policies would be right out and grounds for involuntary kinetically-induced trepanning.

    Second, all wireless networks should be open so those evil trenchcoaters can't hide behind passwords and encryption! Because they, of course, are the only ones who need to use such measures to prevent the good people from catching them at their dastardly deeds. A few people, no doubt, will have their WAPs abused and hijacked but it's a small price to pay because the pedos will be stopped in their tracks!

    And the PM & Co absolutely must prevent the sickos from reading the Snowden documents (which are only available in newspapers of Great Britain, so the pedos in the rest of the world will just have to carry on as they have). Otherwise, those lusters for underaged flesh will figure out how to avoid having their emails cross secretly-tapped switches in ISPs, or how to route their P2P traffic to avoid compromised cables, or how to keep their wireless data packets from being hoovered up by listening satellites. And above all, the dirtbags must never know that their online contact lists, cloud files, and social media interactions are being sifted through by GCHQ & NSA lest they try to keep their activities secret!!

     

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  42.  
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    Matt, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 2:00pm

    How many have been caught

    So how many child abusers have been caught before the leaks? I'm betting the GCHQ & NSA wouldn't share the information with police even if they detected abuse. When was it the GCHQ & NSA job to do police work?

     

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  43.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 3:08pm

    Godwin's Law has a corollary now, it would seem. The longer any discourse on digital rights goes, the more likely pedophilia will come up.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  44.  
    identicon
    Rallias, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 4:02pm

    Re:

    The thought of an 80 year old walking into congress, stripping off a casual jacket by tearing it open, and then giving a congressman a lap dance just hopped into my mind.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  45.  
    identicon
    Ni, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 5:26pm

    Re:

    I'm not so sure about that. Those who scream the loudest generally have something to scream about.

    It's those who protest the loudest who have the most to hide (if we're gonna make generalizations here).

    I'm very vocal about child abuse. But the idea of hurting a child makes me sick to my stomach. Now if I was going around DENYING that I was a child abuser, that may be suspect. But speaking out LOUDLY - at least in my experience - happens because it comes from a place of great pain and memories of suffering.

    *shrug*

     

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  46.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 5:29pm

    Re: tailor the scare to the culture

    My guess? Britain seems to have this strange preoccupation, consciously or unconsciously, with promiscuous underage behaviour. Look up "Alfie" and "Chantelle Steadman". Hell, even copyright cocksucker Lily Allen apparently gave harmonica lessons to boys when she was 13.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  47.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 6:52pm

    Re: Re:

    Me too....

    Which is why the murders, frame jobs, and false accusations are all the more hurtful.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  48.  
    identicon
    Robert, Nov 7th, 2013 @ 9:46pm

    Damn, I read that as some really, really, bad crap about the NSA and likely their five 'E'yes partners is yet to come, some seriously bad stuff. I expect some NSA lead polticial extortion and blackmail stuff to start leaking any time now.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  49.  
    identicon
    Terry, Nov 8th, 2013 @ 5:53pm

    UK Parliament Losing Plot

    It would seem in this article, along with any other dealing with the different "spy" agencies seem to all be jumping on the Terroristic" band wagon for just about any or all types of supposed acts against the various Governments.
    I am surprised in a way thay Mike hasn't coined a proper term to replace the "Terroristic" word with one much more fitting. I would like to suggest to him a possible replacement word..."Theroristic"...After all, a large portion of their claims could be started with the phrase " In Theory it..."
    Works for me at any rate Mike. If you like it...please feel free to use it...It's NOT copyrighted!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  50.  
    identicon
    Ruby, Nov 9th, 2013 @ 5:53am

    leaks helping peadophile rings

    If the countries security services were using their surveillance systems to prevent peadophile rings why is peadophilia still so rife?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  51.  
    identicon
    James, Nov 10th, 2013 @ 12:21am

    Didn't the infamous UK pedophile Jimmy Saville molest hundreds of kids over a period of decades while working for the BBC. Everyone knew what was going on, yet no one did anything...almost as though he was being protected. He also was close friends with Margaret Thatcher and Prince Charles. Surely the security services informed the Prime Minister and royal family of Saville's activities. Maybe we should look to the upper echelons of government and media for the real pedophile threat.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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