RUMOURS OF BACKLASH AGAINST BLOGGERS: more details surface after Slog asked to delete links

levesonptcropHaving been tipped off last week about the pulling together of a Government plan to attack bloggers via McAlpinesque legal threats, The Slog received in short order a series of requests from a variety of blogospherists, asking for links to articles about leading politicians to be deleted. Jeremy Hunt and Boris Johnson were the anti-free speech fanatics most often cited. Now more details of a new Bill to complement that strategy are starting to surface. It isn’t looking pretty.

Useless legislator and empty suit Nick Clegg may be about to pull off the one achievement of his risible Deputy Premiership: new powers to monitor email and internet use need a “fundamental rethink”, he says. And he “vowed” (always beware the vow) to block the draft Communications Data Bill, instead pushing alternative plans that would reduce liberty infringement to a minimum.

His comments came as a committee of MPs and peers criticised the bill’s scope, with several voices on all sides at Westminster increasingly prepared to view the Leveson Report as a Trojan Horse crammed with new laws to stifle online debate, revelation and speculation. Leveson himself was notably quick to cite the Aussie DJ phone-call prank as another example of the need for tougher privacy laws….an interesting comment given that it has nothing whatever to do with the internet or the press media. (See a new Slogpost asking valid question about this case)

Justice Leveson blew all his credibility when he released the ‘finding’ that Jeremy Hunt had acted fairly and without bias in the BSkyB takeover saga. If he acted fairly at all, then it was a mode he was forced into as post-Dowler public pressure grew for the entire Murdoch clan to be put down. The takeover of BSkyB was thus abandoned. There remain at least four question-marks over Hunt’s behaviour before and during this time: none of them have been satisfactorily answered or investigated. And lest we forget, Hunt himself was involved in the choice of Leveson: his signature is on the appointment confirmation.

So while Clegg’s hour may have come, we can all assume that his interest in this issue is purely opportunistic. The broader policy (which I am sure he privately supports) will be to put the legal frighteners on anyone telling the truth about contemporary issues, while using GCHQ as a means of reminding site owners that Big Brother is watching. Already, it seems clear to me the strategy is working.

We need to stop and think here about the sheer variety and volume of bogus news being fed to the MSM at the moment. The Syrian conflict, the EU-UK negotiation standoff, the move towards an EU referendum, the emphasis on McAlpine’s heart bypass rather than systemic paedophile abuse, the hijacking of the Rotherham scandal by pointless UKip speculation, endless NHS spin hiding a reality of preparing for privatisation….there is a lot at stake for those who wish to hide rather than share.

But I wouldn’t hold your breath looking for support from the MSM: this sort of stuff will suit everyone from the Guardian via the Mail and the Mirror to the Telegraph and the Times: none of the Rusbridger-Trinity-Dacre-Barclay-Murdoch axis want to sustain a vibrant internet. For one thing, it doesn’t follow their agenda of complicity; for another, we’re putting them out of business.

Meanwhile, Ben Fellows has once more entered the fray. In an article this morning, he writes: ‘I received a disturbing telephone call this afternoon from one of Lord Justice Leveson’s key advisors. The source stated that “because you have written articles about Ken Clarke on the internet making serious allegations of sexual assault, Leveson is going to set you up saying that you are indulging in gossip on the internet to discredit a senior member of parliament.”

I confess to being at the stage with Fellows where I suspect he’s living in a film script written by his namesake, but on the other hand there’s a reasonable chance he’s being fed this stuff with a view to delivering more scare-tactics into an already hyperventilating blog community.

Stay tuned.


Vaguely related: Dave’s Love-in and Hate-out thing with the EU


42 thoughts on “RUMOURS OF BACKLASH AGAINST BLOGGERS: more details surface after Slog asked to delete links

  1. Yes, unfortunately I think the writing has been on the wall for a while now. You are correct, it doesn’t suit the MSM because it is starving them of income but, more importantly I think is that ‘The Message’ is failing to come across because of the Blogosphere, HillBilly Clinton remarked a short while ago that the Establishment is failing in its attempts at controlling public opinion, certainly the EU is attempting to control ‘The Message’. This could be one big false flag just to get legislation in place to control the Blogsphere. The MSM they will go along with any plan suggested to them as it’s in their interest to do so.
    I’m afraid we don’t have much time left….


  2. We have ways and means around this censorship,by using a VPN. The kids will sort this lot out,I have no doubt.
    We have the cozy coterie of the Establishment on the run. They do not like it ‘up ’em’. As the army boys say.
    To quote Brendan Behan’ THERE IS ONLY ONE OF ‘EM AND THAT IS F–k ’em.


  3. In a better world, Blair would have meant what he said when he repeated the word ‘Education’ prior to the 1997 General Election. We would now have a growing number of citizens capable of weighing up information and using their quota of intelligence (intelligo = I understand) to ignore the drivel, ill-informed speculation, and reams of pig-shit-thick conclusions being drawn in the MSM – and treating the even greater volume of cack on the internet appropriately. As it is, we have gossip, idiocy, judicial enquiry heaped on judicial enquiry, police investigations into matters which are not within their remit, accusations of racism which don’t even understand the word, and parliamentary committees which achieve nothing – and it all obfuscates any real issues. And now we have totally ridiculous threats to legislate chaos. I’m beginning to think the lizard theories may have something (there’s got to be SOME explanation). [And it’s sad to think that I’d better point out that the last sentence is… oh, forget it.]


  4. I think the lizard theories are nonsense but only because it’s an insult to lizards when mentioning them in the same breath as this bunch of evil inbred psychopaths.


  5. Pingback: RUMOURS OF BACKLASH AGAINST BLOGGERS: Details surface after Slog asked to delete links « 21st Century Wire

  6. I think that the ‘Tor’ network might be able to circumvent any controls put in place by TPTB but, I do believe it’s rather slow, to the point of being unusable. I have looked at it briefly but, would need to spend more time with it to be any use I think.


  7. As an side, I do think more and more are ‘waking up’ but, are so ill informed or misinformed that they are scared to know what to think when it comes to an in/out referendum. Although YouGov has determined that 49% want out as opposed to 32% wanting to stay in, there is considerable quiet lobbying on behalf of big business going on, many threatening to up sticks and leave the UK if we leave the EU.
    I’m not convinced with that threat on the table, big job losses etc. that we as a nation vote to stay in. It’s definitely not clear cut.


  8. It’s slow, but not unusable. You wouldn’t use it for every day browsing, unless you were researching something that you were pretty sure TPTB would sooner you didn’t know (though, admittedly, the general trend there is towards preventing the plebs from knowing the straight facts about just about anything!), but it’s adequately fast for blogging purposes.


  9. kfc1404

    The issue is they got caught out in so many things and revealed to be what they were. That was pandora’s box.

    They had 2 choices at that time …

    1 .Prosecute with fairly harsh sententence those that we behaving in such a way and it would all have vanished (ordinary people would have been)


    2.) Hide it, conceal it, pretend it didn’t happen, slap on the wrist, promises won’t happen again, etc. etc. nut never 1.). They chose 2.), the people know they chose 2.) and now it is set to haunt them like a ghost, never to be laid to rest.


  10. I’ve never entirely understood that attitude of fear towards the ‘big companies’ deciding to leave the UK if things aren’t run to suit them (or rather their senior shareholders). Sure, in the short term, there might be mass job losses, but… If said company was doing something of value in the first place, it’s disappearance would leave a big hole in the market, which would rapidly be filled by a bunch of new companies; presumably hiring the expert staff that Mr. Big just laid off – they would be the obvious choice of employees, after all.

    It’s high time we started letting the free market decide which companies, banks and organisations are fit for purpose. Let the ones which aren’t fail. They’ll be replaced by organisations that CAN do a proper job.

    We won’t, of course, because all the ‘Too Big To Fail’ orgs have people at the top whose obscenely wealthy lifestyles depend on them being able to stay on top, even when they are making a complete dog’s breakfast of running the organisation decently and honestly. Though the apparent immunity to the law and to facing consequences is obviously very helpful when it comes to making up for incompetence, immorality and a gung-ho ‘profit first’ gamblers mentality.


  11. The phone call to Fellows, if there was one, makes no sense either legally or logically.

    Lord Leveson has/had no brief other than to head up an inquiry into phone tapping. I watched quite a lot of the hearings, and he made the point many times, when others would try to lead him in that direction, that his brief wasn’t about the internet.

    Now he has reported, he has no further brief to do anything at all, unless he is given a new one. He has no power to rule on anything; at most he can make recommendations on his conclusions of an inquiry that he is asked by government to carry out. As yet, no inquiry has been launched about the internet.

    Secondly, I’ve been following closely various moves in the past year or so, in the United States and Brussels, to get through various bits of legislation and other round-the-houses fixes designed to clamp down on the internet, and every single one of them has failed. We’ve also seen McAlpine go very quiet in the last week or so, and I like to think (and I may be wrong) that his Welsh solicitor, Andrew Reid, has realised that he overstretched himself somewhat in claiming that he could ‘teach all those people on Twitter a lesson.’

    Although the internet is owned, ultimately, by the American military, its interests are far wider and more diverse than those of specific governments and possibly even of Common Purpose.

    So for all the above reasons, I’m not really that worried about ‘them’ being any closer to inflicting internet censorship than they were before. But they can bluster and bully and threaten… and that’s what I think this is.


  12. I’d be very happy if all these large companies that threaten to leave would just f*** off and leave some space for our booming sme sector which creates most of our employment. They won’t leave of course because there is too much monopoly profit for them to make here and they’ve invested too much in politicians and quangoes for it to be worthwhile.


  13. You’d be chilled to the bone if you realised just how easy it is, via the MSM, for TPTB to frighten an electorate into voting against it’s own interests. Note how we Irish voted yes recently to the Fiskal Union treaty, which in effect was voting for years or even permanent Austerity on ourselves.


  14. Moves in this direction by TPTB were inevitable, I’m afraid. You surely could never expect them to go down without a fight.

    Concerned bloggers would do well to consider moving their server domicile away from UK and any similarly-minded territories – and also away from large corporations such as WordPress that may prove easily pressured in the future.

    As an example, I believe that Guido has been published out of one of the caribbean tax havens for a few years now.


  15. Is anyone else wary of Tor? I read up on it as I was considering installing it. However, I noticed that its financed by the US State Dept. So I figured what’s the point, they’re still one step ahead.


  16. “There remain at least four question-marks over Hunt’s behaviour before and during this time: none of them have been satisfactorily answered or investigated. And lest we forget, Hunt himself was involved in the choice of Leveson: his signature is on the appointment confirmation.”—————

    I so agree absolutely with this. IMO this man and Cameron have got away with something that should have brought down the government – so far anyway! But who knows what is around the corner for those that seek to hoodwink and deliberately mislead the public? Things can blow up again just as quickly as they die down!


  17. Personally I don’t take the results of any refererendum held in Ireland at face value – there is massive evidence of systemic fraud in the Irish voting system. To take just one example from many – in the 2009 Euro elections three thousand votes were “mistakenly” given to the wrong candidate in the Connacht Ulster constituency. Ironically this “mistake” only emerged after the recipient of the misallocated votes demanded a recount. What was striking about this incident was not merely the fact that such a huge number of votes could be wrongly misallocated, but the media’s amazingly blase reaction – they just mentioned in passing that the candidate’s demand for a recount had “backfired” when the recount revealed that he had gotten three thousand votes too many. No outrage whatsoever about the fact that the recount had indicated massive anomaly in the way votes are initially counted. The candidate from whom the votes were stolen demanded a police inquiry to absolutely no avail. Surely it’s illogical to believe that an establishment that engages in the cover-up of paedophile rings in its ranks would have any qualms about rigging referendums and elections?


  18. John: This was inevitable and I got that right back in the 1990s when the early internet advocates said that they had government on the run. I said right, you wait, what frees you in the end enslaves you.It has taken a while but the Establishment will always win in the end. In a couple of years I’m afraid you will have to be based in Reykavik or Tonga or some such haven from Big Brother. The forces of darkness are getting closer very day.


  19. @kfc…..””””””I think that the ‘Tor’ network might be able to circumvent any controls put in place by TPTB””””

    Hello kfc, don’t put too much faith in the security of TOR. See below:-


    Tor to Offer USG Funds for Exit Relays

    Lance Cottrell,

    “I personally would never use Tor for anonymity. You’re putting a lot of trust in the guy who is operating the system. [The data] is hopping from one server to another, but whoever is running the end [exit] node can actually do all sorts of crap to you. Scanners, interceptors, content modifiers … there’s a lot things you can do at the last loop. Anyone can set up a Tor node. It’s all random,so you have no reason to trust the guy running the nodes you’re going through. There’s reason to believe that intelligence agencies from almost any country in the world are probably running Tor nodes, as well as organized crime.”
    Excerpt of interview from: Hacking the Future: Privacy, Identity, and Anonymity on the Web,


  20. Ham fisted as always from tptb.

    Nerds of the world will unite and render such moves redundant within a week. And i’d say north korea is about to see a boost in web hosting for foreign blogs!


  21. The Powers That Were are running scared and clutching at straws as the world wakes up to their nefarious behind-the scenes activities. As David Icke says: “We are many. They are few. ”
    Never be afraid to speak out. Thanks for a fantastic blog, by the way. It’s great and I found it thanks to twitter!


  22. I think if Leveson objected to how pols have brazenly used his findings to bash the internet – and he was a man with a – he would surely have said something by now.


  23. Nonsense, I have looked in detail at both the public and private proposals of the Sir. Humphrey class and they are so typically so obscenely un-informed and stupid that these technical measures will go exactly nowhere. Both technically qualified spooks and experts like Schneier have been telling the Pols this, but remember Frau May is in charge of this, she who cannot boil water without burning it!

    I note that Quatada is moving to a better neighborhood, instead of the slammer, and this is how useful this female dog in human coths is!

    The whole area of Snooping is packed with dead-falls for the authoritarians, since even the ‘clever’ British Barristers don’t understand
    they keep making huge mistakes. The current stupidity is that traffic analysis will help them to identify individuals … nonsense and even when they do they fumble! I recommend those of you who like a laugh to read Schneiers “Secrets and Lies” and other ‘social’ books..

    There are about 10’000 ways of circumventing anything that the government may do that it will ALL be a huge waste of money, Note that they cannot get worthwhile projects like Medical Records or Personal Tax to work!

    1. Linux Encrypted file systems, on modern disks with on-board key vault, can be irrevocably scrambled by one false password entry.
    2, Encrypted VPN to a server in another land, I have servers in Switzerland, France, the UK and Brasil and can hop to Tor from any one of them, and change routing 1’000 times per second
    3. IPv6 will, by default, encrypt all data, and optionally everything except the immediate destination IPv6 addrtess, just so it can be routed.

    Good luck with it all, I will smile as the assholes though 10B at another vanity project

    MFG, omb


  24. Tor, is in this, just a proof of concept, cos the authorities are so lame!

    The fact is that, to meet their goals, they have to win, 100% accurately, everywhere, all the time, and since it will be built by IBM or EDS on time +, not a hope. These wankers can’t keep a static web page secure, and certainly have no way of ‘understanding’ the mass of data they collect even when it is tween jihadis or 9/11.

    That does not mean that CaMORON and his chums should be spared hanging for Treasonous waste of Tax-Payer money though,

    MFG, omb


  25. And it is often a circle of re-inforcement with Tax-Payer money going in subsidy to crony-Capitalists who make political donations and faux-lobby.

    The truth is that all corporations will do what is best for them, so for example, pulling Amazon, eBay, Facebook and Googl’e chain over tax wont work, they all can afford to pull out of markets and wait national governments out.

    The problem comes back to stupid government regulation in the first place eg Retail Banking, which is a disgrace in the UK especially as the big 5 are now the big 1.75, Give UBS, ING, DB and CA a UK licence and things would fix themselves in a year.. The City is always in specious special pleading. In contrast anyone can sell gas in the UK and there is real competition

    MFG, omb


  26. Pingback: At the End of the Day | A diary of deception and distortion

  27. The information to bring down the Government is in the public domain and has been for some time. The problem is that Government edicts ban the publication of it. The BBC have it (I know), as do the Culture, Media and Sports committee (I know). Leveson has knowledge of it and ignored it. This was admitted last night by a very prominent journalist at a public meeting in London. And it has nothing to do with Hunt – although that may be available as well (that I don’t know). Neil Wallis has publicly professed (via the BBC – whoops!) that he knows details of (the as yet unpublished) situation which triggered the unravelling of the hacking saga but he’s not telling. One would reasonably suspect that he’s telling the truth as he still faces the prospect of having to explain himself in Court to answer charges which the CPS may bring against him over this very matter (he’s still on bail whilst they work out this very delicate little number). And he wouldn’t want a reputation as a teller of fibs before he’s called upon to convince a jury that he does not trade in dissembling. Ironic that. I wonder if said future jurors might include readers of this blog?


  28. Are you familiar with Tor hidden services & onion routing at all? It reduces browsing speed to a crawl reminiscent of dial up and is overkill for the current situation. However, it would be fairly easy and inexpensive to set up an indestructible Slog mirror/archive via Freedom Hosting. I certainly think it is a measure worth considering should the Slog find itself singled out for special attention.

    It would be an absolute travesty to have such excellent work even slightly manipulated by establishment pressure.


  29. Pingback: Rumours of Backlash Against Bloggers: Details surface after Slog asked to delete links | Sovereign Independent UK

  30. Clearly, things are happening at a pace in multi pronged attacks from all directions.
    The internet was precious and I hope that it flourishes despite the attacks of the Kenites and their klowns.
    Personally though, I have fully woken up and will never trust anything remotely systemic again…So, if the internet disappeared in its entirety, it would be a blow, but it would not change the way I now view things one bit. Perhaps most of you reading this blog feel the same way. And therefore, we must be prepared to spread the word to those unawakened.
    I think, all in all, Levinson is on a hiding to nothing, too many cats have been let out of the bag and oppressive censorship will just further reveal the tyrannical nature of the state.
    This is a victory for the bloggers, not a defeat!!!!!


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