Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Which rights should we discard?

As the Tories launch into their latest 'human rights are the root of all evil' fest, at their last annual conference before the next general election, I'd like to ask David Cameron and his party colleagues a question posed by the late Lord Bingham, relating to the rights laid out in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union,
"Which of these rights, I ask, would we wish to discard? Are any of them trivial,
superfluous, unnecessary? Are any them un-British?"
Just to be clear which of -
  • Human dignity? (article 1)
  • Right to life? (article 2)
  • Right to the integrity of the person? (article 3)
  • Prohibition of torture and inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment? (article 4)
  • Prohibition of slavery and forced labour? (article 5)
  • Right to liberty and security? (article 6)
  • Respect for private and family life? (article 7)
  • Protection of personal data? (article 8)
  • Right to marry and right to found a family? (article 9)
  • Freedom of thought, conscience and religion? (article 10)
  • Freedom of expression and information? (article 11)
  • Freedom of assembly and of association? (article 12)
  • Freedom of the arts and sciences? (article 13)
  • Right to education? (article 14)
  • Freedom to choose an occupation and right to engage in work? (article 15)
  • Freedom to conduct a business? (article 16)
  • Right to property? (article 17)
  • Right to asylum? (article 18)
  • Protection in the event of removal, expulsion or extradition? (article 19)
  • Equality before the law? (article 20)
  • Non-discrimination? (article 21)
  • Cultural, religious and linguistic diversity? (article 22)
  • Equality between men and women? (article 23)
  • The rights of the child? (article 24)
  • The rights of the elderly? (article 25)
  • Integration of persons with disabilities? (article 26)
  • Solidarity (articles 27 to 38) 
  • Citizens rights (articles 39 to 46)
  • Right to an effective remedy and to a fair trial? (article 47)
  • Presumption of innocence and right of defence? (article 48)
  • Principles of legality and proportionality of criminal offences and penalties? (article 49)
  • Right not to be tried or punished twice in criminal proceedings for the same criminal offence? (article 50)
  • General provisions (articles 51 to 54)
- would the main party of government wish to discard? Are any of these rights trivial, superfluous, unnecessary? Are any them un-British?"

Monday, September 29, 2014

Ineffectiveness of airport naked scanners

I'm reminded of Austrian professor Werner Gruber's exposé on German TV (from 2010) of just how useless airport naked scanners are as a security measure. Prof Gruber, of the Institute for Experimental Physics in Vienna, manged to hide the components of an incendiary device from the scanner, then promptly went outside and demonstrated, in spectacular fashion, what the scanner had missed.

But be AMAZED be VERY AMAZED at how this WONDERFUL high tech FULL BODY SCANNER WILL PROTECT YOU - The machine did pick up his mobile phone and studio microphone.