Many commentators, including myself, have been sounding the alarm for many years that only a short-sighted society filled with fearful imbeciles would ever grant government tyrannical powers in the name of fighting an overhyped, outside enemy. As has happened countless times in world history, once these powers are granted they are always eventually used against the domestic population. Sometimes it is used to crackdown on dissent, but sometimes it’s used just to earn money and shake down the domestic plebs. It appears the British Broadcasting Corportation (BBC) in Great Britain is now using it simply to collect tax.
The Daily Mail reports that:
The BBC is using laws designed to catch terrorists and organized crime networks to track down people who dodge the license fee, it emerged yesterday.
The publicly-funded corporation uses the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA), designed by the last Labour government to fight terrorism, to catch those who evade paying the £145.50 fee.
Now, however, its ability to use sweeping surveillance powers could be stopped by a new review announced yesterday by culture secretary Sajid Javid.
Mr Javid’s independent inquiry into TV licence fee enforcement will examine the corporation’s use of covert surveillance operations on those it thinks have not paid the obligatory licence fee.
Almost 200,000 people are prosecuted a year – one in nine of all lower court cases – and more than 50 people were sent to prison in 2012-2013 for failing to buy a TV licence. Many get penalties of up to £1,000 and a criminal record.
Emma Carr, of the campaign group Big Brother Watch, said: ‘The public were told these powers were going to be used to catch terrorists and paedophiles, not to help the BBC to snoop on people who haven’t paid the license fee.
Let’s also not forget that David Cameron and his Tories are now pushing to ban free speech to fight ISIS, something I highlighted in the post: The UK’s Conservative Party Declares War on YouTube, Twitter, Free Speech and Common Sense.
Although James Madison was referring to these United States in the quote at the top, the same idea is applicable to the good people of Great Britain, and they had best take note.