Putting the threat to our freedom into context

In a private exchange with a fellow blogger several days ago he speculated that the Anders Breivik mass murder would bode ill for dissenters.  Well, one assumes it was private, but who knows what is being monitored and by whom…

Anyway, being a ‘glass half full’ kind of chap I replied that seeing as the Norwegian intelligence service has shown Breivik up to be a dangerous and well armed Walter Mitty, attempts to tar dissenters with the same brush will fail.  I stressed the importance of continuing to cite evidence and push our arguments so the powers that be will be forced to speak to them.

After all, I pointed out, 7/7 didn’t really change anything and subsequent plots haven’t really changed anything, so therefore it follows a Norwegian mass murderer will not change anything either.

At this point my blogging friend said he was not so sure.  He qualified his concern by providing me with a link to a piece on the French language version of EurActiv, translated roughly by Google.

Reading and reflecting upon it made me reconsider my inital assessment, hence my post yesterday.  All bloggers should take a few moments to take the article on board.

Mentioned in that piece is European Commission spokesman Michele Cercone (pictured).  It seems old Michele has had a fair bit to say lately – some of it extremely illuminating and far reaching.  Consider this, attributed to Cercone by Balkans.com:

The European Commission is building a security system to issue early warnings on threats of extremism, xenophobia and other forms of radicalism

Or this quote reported by Hurriyet Daily News:

Compromises are more easily reached after shocking events like those that happened in Norway.

And International Affairs Magazine, explained that: ‘Various forces will be trying to capitalize on Norway’s bloody drama. Interestingly, the European Commission championed the cause. Breivik left a thorough description of the costs of the bomb ingredients, the result being that the EU rushed to impose regulations on the sales of chemicals that can be mold into explosives,’ and reported Cercone as saying:

The European Commission will speed up the introduction of new regulations on chemicals sales after a Norwegian extremist who killed 76 people in last week’s bombing and shooting spree admitted he used fertilizers to make explosives.

But virtually none of this has been reported by our world beating media corps, which is too busy devoted column hectares to its navel gazing over phone hacking.  Should we be worried by this?  Absolutely.

It is a fact that the European Commission, an arm of the EU, is now increasing its efforts to apply control over people in the member states.  No crisis must ever be wasted.  The EU, being unelected, unaccountable and therefore wholly anti democratic, is seizing the moment to empower itself still further at the expense of our personal freedoms.  We are being dictated to by an entity that is taking an opportunity to use the actions of one individual as justification to clamp down on anyone who opposes this essentially socialist construct – hence the focus on right wing ‘extremism’ where the EU decides what constitutes extreme.

The issue is one of mission creep.  We have seen it all before, where legislation enacted for one purpose becomes a convenient measure that is applied for a different purpose that was never intended.  The EU is engaging in naked opportunism to exert greater control, while setting itself as the sole authority to determine what dissent against it will be tolerated.

It is frightening that the EU, with its goal of eradicating the nation state, will be deciding whether its opponents are too radical, whether their views can therefore be shared on the internet, and will define what constitutes xenophobia and whether that should be punished – all backed by European courts and European arrest warrants.

In hindsight I got it wrong.  We are indeed staring into an abyss where our enemy, the EU, could take advantage of the Breivik attacks to effectively criminalise anti EU sentitment, or at the very least prevent people from sharing those sentiments with others, citing them as ‘extreme’, ‘radical’, ‘xenophobic’ or even potential ‘lone wolf terrorists’.  This response isn’t being driven simply by Breivik’s actions, but crucially the rationale he gave for them.

12 Responses to “Putting the threat to our freedom into context”

  1. 1 Barry 30/07/2011 at 3:07 pm

    I would take issue with Cercone saying this: “The European Commission is building a security system to issue early warnings on threats of extremism, xenophobia and other forms of radicalism”

    It won’t work. Granted, that is not an terribly optimistic view of it. They may have occasional successes but they will have large numbers of false alarms. They will try to build a comprehensive intelligence system, it will be expensive and intrusive and they will claim it is doing what they said it would. What it will actually be doing is running security resources ragged by deluging analysts with nonsense they *have* to sift through. It will also be used like the UK security warning rubbish – the least they could do is make it a wheel or a thermometer graphic rather than boring text. How about some colour coded bombs…

    Their paranoia knows no bounds. Their budget knows no limits. To them there are almost no freedoms too great to preserve. They exploit terrorism and feed it by jerking their knees with gusto.

    Cercone’s words suggest to me that the system won’t just be trying to prevent buses being blown up, people being massacred and fertiliser being turned into bombs. Extremism and radicalism – will that include the optimum population trust and eco-mentalists? No but it will include those who are against big state and centralism.

    As for xenophobia do they mean people in the EU who don’t like people from outside the EU or do they really mean people in each member state who aren’t all that content with mass migration from outside the EU and unfettered migration within it. All that will be is monitoring people who aren’t fully fledged multiculti converts.(For if you aren’t for multiculti you must be against it.) Apparently the new Europe that nobody asked for was built on the idea of multiculturalism therefore to be anti-multiculti will mark you out as anti-EU. Or will it be the other way around? Anti-EU sentiment being twisted by the authorities into a claim of xenophobia.

    It is a bad idea and it will be incompetent to boot.

  2. 2 APL 30/07/2011 at 3:09 pm

    “It is frightening that the EU, ”

    And our MPs and politicians who are, in the final analysis supposed to be protecting our liberties, will just say .. ‘We can’t do anything to oppose this, it’s brought in from the EU ..’

  3. 3 Chris Palmer 30/07/2011 at 4:34 pm

    This is presumbing that the Euro crisis doesn’t bring the EU crashing down – which in itself is probably wishful thinking.

    9/11, 7/7 etc. They all made a huge difference in allowing our political elite, domestic and EU, to reduce our fundamental liberties in the name of security. Benjamin Franklin is attributed, “They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety”. We have given up a significant number of our hard won liberties since 2001 (and even before then under Major and Thatcher). As you, and Richard North say, the EU is always ready to turn terrible events into a beneficial crisis.

  4. 4 Goodnight Vienna 30/07/2011 at 4:44 pm

    Too true, AM. The EC has been banging on in the background about ‘extremists’ and ‘nationalism’ for a while now. Via Lisbon they already have the mechanisms for banning political parties in order to curb dissent from within. As has been said many times since Breivik – we are all dissenters now and we are all potential terrorists in the eyes of the EU. When they talk of xenophobia I think it has as much to do with how Europeans perceive the institution of the EU as it does with anything else. They are sacrosanct and must not be criticised. #no2eu.

  5. 5 TomTom 30/07/2011 at 5:03 pm

    Hilarious ! The British tried for years to control sales of sodium nitrate both sides of the Irish Border but farmers need the product. Now DFID even buys it for Afghan “farmers” and it is turned into IEDs in Afghanistan to kill British soldiers.

    Breivik bought 10 kilos of chemicals in Poland, just what could he do with 10kg ? He was a farmer so he could buy sodium nitrate. I do hope the EU controls Farmers so we can get the CAP under control and arrest French farmers on suspicion of fraud !

    The EU is risible. It is as useful as Versailles in 1789. It is terrified of REVOLUTION and has no way of preventing it. Bankruptcy brings collapse of civil society as in Germany 1923, Hungary etc. This System is over. Breivik is simply a portent and the more they go on about him the more they expose the bankruptcy of their regime

  6. 6 Lorne 30/07/2011 at 11:21 pm

    Really, it doesn’t make any difference. Every failing system eventually turns to the ‘force model’ to perpetuate its existence, and the EU is no different. That’s a good thing, because it is a sign of a system nearing the end of its life.

    You have a cute icon on your site of a tank in front of the Houses of Parliament with the caption “Regime Change Begins at Home.’ You’ve considered the implications of that, I assume.

  7. 7 Autonomous Mind 31/07/2011 at 12:02 am

    What implications would they be? Whose tank is it? Where our government has decided to bring about regime change it has used tanks, so the symbolism is perfectly appropriate.

  8. 8 Brian H 31/07/2011 at 4:50 am

    So the basic question is: “Is this EU overreach, signalling an imminent rejection by its constituents, and collapse? Or is it another ratcheted move into authoritarian hegemony by the Brussels Empire?”

    It certainly is nothing in between, such as a functional and rational response to events and common concerns.

  9. 9 Junkk Male 31/07/2011 at 7:39 am

    ‘But virtually none of this has been reported by our world beating media corps’

    You do have to wonder.

    When this morning’s news round up so far has featured press headlines such as the ‘British Connection’ ‘on the possible source of the raw materials, and a cuddly bloke in a beard is cosily interviewed just now on SKY for 5 minutes on ‘looking at’ how websites ‘conduct’ discussions, I am a little concerned at the manipulation being engaged upon at politico-media level. Or maybe it’s just manipulation by a few with excessive political zeal, and as the media are too thick or too ratings obsessed to care, they just go along.

    I have ended up with SKY as the others are so dire, but even this is now at a level making watching not worth it.

    We’re about to get the ‘news’ ‘reviewed’ by a peroxide sink ‘actress and broadcaster’, interviewed by two trivial gossip bimbos… which seems the weekend calibre to be expected now.

    Hardly A team insight.

  10. 10 Mr Ecks 31/07/2011 at 9:50 am

    The “euro” crisis is only one aspect of the state’s financial problems. Look at usdebt.kleptocracy.us to see how much trouble the US federal tyranny is in . Add that to the EU mess. When it blows–and it will- the state won’t be able to afford pencil sharpeners never mind their thug squads.

  11. 11 Dave 31/07/2011 at 2:50 pm

    Mr Ecks – They won’t need their thug squads. Why do you think they’ve allowed so many muslims into Europe? This is their new thug squad.

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