I’m confused

When the system of post horses was developed, did the various governments of the world attempt to make a list of who was sending notes to whom?

No, they did not.

When the ground-breaking system of semaphores was developed, did the government of France try to keep a log of every message sent?

No, they did not.

When the telegraph was invented, did the government try to keep a log of every communication?

No, they did not.

When wireless communication was invented, did any government even consider keeping a record of everything being sent?

No, they did not.

And do you know why? It wasn’t because there weren’t threats; the post horse system was misused by enemies of all types. The semaphore could have been used by enemy agents to send any number of unhelpful messages. The telegraph and wireless communications were very helpful to the Germans before and during both World Wars. Do you think that those threats were any less severe than the threats we face now?

It wasn’t because they couldn’t do it either; yes the resources of the state and of data processing were considerably less then than now, but so was the job at hand. A telegram was a massive thing to get, whereas phone calls and emails are ten-a-penny.

It was, simply, because there was no need for it then. And there is no need for it now, despite what GCHQ, the Home Office and the Labour party would have you believe.

But the fact that there is no need won’t stop it; no, ‘commmunications data’ on everything will still be collected. Every communication that you have will still be logged and everyone you associate with will be noted. Every time you answer the phone will be listed somewhere, and this will be accessible on the flimsiest of evidence, or no evidence at all if the requisitioner is of sufficient rank1.

All, of course, for your own protection. Doesn’t that make you feel secure?


1 – Going by the way that the RIPA went, that rank will probably be anything above tea-boy. But that’s not the point at all…

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