What Is It With Iceland?

Flag_of_IcelandAs if turning their little island into a hedge fund, blowing that up and destroying scores of banks wasn’t enough (not to mention their unpronounceable volcano shutting down air travel over most of Europe), now the Icelanders want to allow unfettered whistleblowing?!? Corrupt governments and corporations everywhere are surely plotting to scupper Iceland once and for all …  Here’s the press release:

Reykjavik, Iceland; 4:00 UTC, June 16th 2010.

The WikiLeaks advised proposal to build an international “new media haven” in Iceland, with the world’s strongest press and whistleblower protection laws, and a “Nobel” prize for Freedom of Expression, has unaminously passed the Icelandic Parliament.

50 votes were cast in favor, zero against, one abstained. Twelve members of parliament were not present. Vote results.

One of the inspirations for the proposal was the dramatic August 2009 gagging of Iceland’s national broadcaster, RUV by Iceland’s then largest bank, Kaupthing.

Two changes were made to the proposal from its original form as per the opinion of the parliament’s general affairs committee. The first of these altered slightly the wording of the first paragraph so as to widen the arena for research. The second of these added two new items to the list of tasks for the government:

– That the government should perform a detailed analysis, especially with respect to operational security, for the prospect of operating data centers in Iceland.

– That the government should organize an international conference in Iceland regarding the changes to the legal environment being caused by expansion of cloud computing, data havens, and the judicial state of the Internet.

Video footage from the proposal’s vote will be available here and here.

Details of the proposal and press contacts are here.


Majestic is gadfly emeritus.

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4 Comments on "What Is It With Iceland?"

  1. Relatedly, one of the founders of WikiLeaks is now actively being sought out by U.S. Authorities “for discussion.” http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2010/jun/11/wik

  2. malatesting123 | Jun 16, 2010 at 6:14 pm |

    Fitting that the country with the oldest parliament in the world, the Althing, become a bulwark against the tyranny and repression of the powerful.

  3. Lesson?

    Don't fuck with the Vikings. They'll get Ragnarok on your ass.

  4. Lesson?

    Don't fuck with the Vikings. They'll get Ragnarok on your ass.

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