Azara Blog: Gordon Brown wants to be a dictator

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Date published: 2006/02/12

The BBC says:

Gordon Brown is to announce sweeping new security measures, including a call for tougher counter-terrorism powers.

Plans for a new integrated electronic border system will be announced as well as a proposal to extend the time terror suspects can be held without trial.

The Chancellor will say that security and counter-terrorism will be at the heart of a public review.
Speaking at the Royal United Services Institute in London on Monday, Mr Brown will speak of the complexity of the terrorist threat and call for a "shared national purpose" to toughen laws to protect people.

He will also to say that three terror plots have been disrupted since 7 July.

"I want to remind the country that the terrorist threat has not diminished and will not diminish until we defeat it," he will say.

He will argue there is a need to balance tough security with individual liberty and proper accountability through the courts and Parliament.

"Now we find that national and international action for security is inextricably linked and security issues dominate decisions in transport, energy, immigration and extend to social security and health, as well as the Treasury," the chancellor will say.

Among his proposals are:

  • an integrated electronic border security system to check biometric passports at ports and airports
  • a single security budget - which could mean a new department for homeland security
  • new measures to combat the financing of terror networks, with private and public sectors sharing data
  • the 28 days for holding terror suspects without trial to be extended

  • Well Brown seems to have the worst of the Blair control freak tendencies without any of the Blair graces. Of course you would certainly hope there was an "integrated electronic border security system to check biometric passports", is he joking? But the introduction of a department of "homeland security" will probably be a failure (as it has been in the US). And increasing the 28 days is just the kind of dictatorial power which Parliament has already told the government to get lost over, exactly because there is no "proper accountability through the courts". But of course proto-dictators always try to push for more power. What he means by a "shared national purpose" (other than waving the UK flag on his proposed UK nationalism day) seems to be to scare people into handing over more of their civil liberties.

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