Monday, July 02, 2007

Big Brother or Warranted Protections?

I'm not sure when all the cameras in London went up, but I spent my time there without ever once noticing one. They now have more than four million closed-circuit security cameras (and say that any one person can have their image captured up to 300 times in one day without ever knowing it).

London also has a radical Muslim population problem. Fundamentalist Imams that make no effort to hide their intent.

What strikes me as odd is the PM, Parliament and Scotland Yard will go to the extent to installing the largest camera system of any Western democracy, yet they lose that hardline proactive stance when it comes to actually dealing with the segment of the population prompting the extreme measures...

"...Civil libertarians warn of the damage to personal privacy. But polls show broad public acceptance, even if the cameras more often capture a couple in loving embrace than a terrorist about to wreak havoc.

But nearly two years since the July 7, 2005, London transit bombings - a case where video surveillance tapes were key to the investigation - Britain is considering giving the government even more authority and equipment to snoop on people's lives.

Airport iris scans will give guards a more precise way to identify passengers and access their background information. Increased use of ultra-sensitive microphones may allow police to listen to whispered conversations.

All vehicles that enter the center of London are captured on the vast network of cameras, making sure they pay the congestion charge but also providing a tool for security." (source)

What do you think of this measure? Is it an attack on personal freedom or is it warranted by the threat in this time? Joe Lieberman is calling for wider use of cameras here.

Personally it wouldn't bother me in the least. I consider myself someone with integrity that does the right thing even when (I think) no one is looking...

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