Author Archive | MarkB

Canada Trying to One-Up the US: Warrantless Wiretapping Announced

Canada – always trying to one-up the United States – has announced it, too, will begin warrantless wiretapping of phones.

Parliamentary bill C-55 would allow police to wiretap telephones without a warrant in an “emergency.” The government has announced it will move ahead with the proposal after throwing civil rights campaigners a bone by agreeing to withdraw an even more controversial bill: C-30. That measure would have required internet service providers to maintain systems for police to “plug-in” to online communications to make sure naughty Canadians weren’t looking at anything they weren’t supposed to.

C-55 will proceed to a vote in the House of Commons in the near future. On the CBC website, commenter “stopnthink eh” observed:

“They can listen without a warrant if they feel like harm may come to one of the parties involved. They are obligated to tell you at 90 days from when this starts… unless they choose to extend it to 3 years before they notify you.

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Romania Strikes Back

In response to recent anti-immigration comments by the eurosceptic UK Independence Party, Romanian newspaper Gandul has launched a tongue-in-cheek ad campaign to promote British tourism to the eastern European country. Featuring the tag line “We may not like Britain, but you’ll love Romania!” the ads eviscerate stereotypes of British life from bland cuisine to bad weather.



The UK Independence Party – which has 12 of Britain’s 73 seats in the European Parliament – has been outspoken in opposition to immigration from eastern Europe.

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They Really Are Coming for Your Guns

Language in a gun control bill in Washington state has drawn opposition even from gun control supporters, according to Seattle Times columnist Danny Westneat.

“They always say, we’ll never go house to house to take your guns away. But then you see this, and you have to wonder.”

That’s no gun-rights absolutist talking, but Lance Palmer, a Seattle trial lawyer and self-described liberal who brought the troubling Senate Bill 5737 to my attention. It’s the long-awaited assault-weapons ban, introduced last week by three Seattle Democrats.

“I’m a liberal Democrat — I’ve voted for only one Republican in my life,” Palmer told me. “But now I understand why my right-wing opponents worry about having to fight a government takeover.”

He added: “It’s exactly this sort of thing that drives people into the arms of the NRA.”

Senate Bill 5737 would permit police to make an annual, warrantless search of homes to inspect for firearms.… Read the rest

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