May 31, 2013 at 6:31 pm #7637
Well that’s it. “Game over man”! If it wasn’t bad enough with the ‘old boys’ network of hierarchical English judiciary, secret courts are to become fully legal in the UK :
Last-ditch bid to dilute secret courts plan fails
Critics lament ‘a terrible day for British justice’ as amendments to justice and security bill narrowly rejected by Lords
“A new generation of secret courts will be established in law within weeks after a last-ditch bid to water down controversial government plans failed in the House of Lords.
Amnesty International warned of a “terrible day for British justice” after Lib Dem peers obeyed a three-line government whip to reject amendments to strengthen the role of judges in the new courts.
The justice and security bill, which extends the secretive closed material procedures (CMPs) into the main civil courts in England and Wales, will be sent to the Queen for royal assent before she opens a new session of parliament on 8 May.
…Clare Algar, executive director of the human rights charity Reprieve, said: “This is a disastrous result for British justice. Not only are we now facing a wave of secret courts at odds with our centuries-old legal freedoms; but we have not even seen the minor safeguards upheld which would have made them less dangerous.
“It is deeply shameful that the government has been allowed to push these plans through parliament, despite the total lack of evidence that they are needed. Secret courts will not make us any safer. They will, however, do irreparable damage to our reputation as a country which respects fair play and the rule of law.
While these new ‘laws’ are meant to address security issues with relation to terrorism and ‘intelligence’ issues, it is a perfect example of the erosion of trust and the rise of a fully politicised police state. The upshot of theses new legal measures will mean that a verdict can be arrived at and judgement and sentence passed without any outside scrutiny. End of. Naomi Wolf writing in the Guardian back in 2007 (oh what halcyon days!) talked about the ten steps any authoritarian regime takes to destroy constitutional freedoms.
And as the Canadian Global Research point out:
“It was also to apply to living accused persons who would be denied under this Orwellian draft the right to represent themselves or have their own lawyers represent them. Nor will they be allowed to know what they are accused of. In the Soviet Union this was perfectly normal. In the place of legal representation the state will appoint Special Advocates who will not be under any responsibility to represent the accused, or explain to that person of what he is accused, and nor will they be under any responsibility to offer a defence.
“The Bill was savaged by the Lords, but returned to the Commons with all the Lords’ amendments struck out. On the day of the vote on gay marriages it slipped through the vote in the select committee with the vote of one backwoods Ulsterman rushed in at the last minute. (The vote was held at the same [time] as members were in the lobbies voting on the gay marriage Bill). … This law when passed, as it will be, can then be applied to all and any offence, even as lowly as a traffic accident. Accused persons will never be told of what they are charged and of course it is very unlikely they would be found ‘not guilty.’”
It is all to be expected though. As Joseph Tainter pointed out, as the [strike]empire[/strike] civilisation over extends and over complexifies it will become more brutal and careless with its own citizens and not just those others who harbour the resources it needs. This will destroy the trust both of strangers and of friends, before filtering into family – what’s left of it. As for communities, watch out for the spies!
Welcome back George Orwell, we thought you’d died a long time ago… Not! :whistle:
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