05 September 2011

Europeans Care About Civil Liberties: US Shocked

The leaked US cables will clearly provide a rich vein to be mined for many months to come.  I don't really have the time to go digging down there, so I was grateful that @airvpm alerted me to this particular gem from 2009.

The context is "European privacy and data protection concerns" and the tendency of those concerns to get in the way of more important issues - like making obscene profits, ensuring that people can be tortured without any of that tiresome oversight business, and generally propping up the decaying US global hegemony through any means:

European privacy and data protection concerns continue to jeopardize our commercial, law enforcement, intelligence and foreign policy objectives.

More specifically, this is the nub of the problem:

The Commission has failed to exercise a strong policy leadership role vis-a-vis other EU institutions. In this vacuum, the European Data Protection Supervisor and the Article 29 Working Party have asserted expansive roles. These bodies regularly make high-profile public statements on areas outside of their formal competence (including the HLCG and Third Pillar issues). Their interpretations of legislation tend to give primacy to civil liberties-based approaches for the EU's Single Market, consumers, or law enforcement, and have gone largely unchallenged by the Commission. 

So the Euro-trash Data Protection Supervisor and the Article 29 Working Party tasked with protecting privacy in the EU have dared to assert themselves and stand up for European citizens by giving "primacy to civil liberties-based approaches for the EU's Single Market, consumers, or law enforcement", while the US's official lapdog in Yurop, the European Commission, has somehow failed to smack them down.

Can you believe it?  I do hope we haven't hurt the feelings of our lords and masters in Washington...


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8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Actually the US is a foreign power and should not interfere into our internal matters. Apparently they don't understand that yet.

glyn moody said...

Probably because they think *we* are internal matters...

Khannea Suntzu said...

Interesting. I predict people in the US will need food aid soon. I look forward to sending them cans of spam half composed of gelatin.

glyn moody said...

@Khannea: sadly, they already do:

"Some 45.8 million people collected food stamps in May, up from 44 million in April, according to the USDA. That's an all-time high, up 12 percent from a year ago and an astonishing 34 percent from two years ago. Comparing May 2010 to May 2011, more than 20 states have seen double-digit percent growth in individuals seeking food assistance benefits. "

[http://abcnews.go.com/Business/surge-demand-food-stamps-united-states/story?id=14231657]

Anonymous said...

I'm from the U.S. and I find myself apologizing again for the behavior of my government.

Maybe if we had a steel mill or two, our government wouldn't be scrambling to protect the latest CG movie flop from PirateBay. But movies, games and music are all we do now.

Change is happening here, and the older generation is in charge, and they are panicking. Sorry yet again.

glyn moody said...

@anon: thanks, but sadly neither the UK nor EU are much better. There's a general malaise affecting old-style politicians that think it's business as usual...

jas said...

"the US is a foreign power and should not interfere into our internal affairs."

the US only has as much power in the EU as the EU lets the US have. the EU depends on the US heavily for its own economic stability, and volatility in the US can and will certainly hurt the EU.

the EU can tell the US to get the hell out of its business. the question is: why hasn't that happened?

this is the EU's doing, and they need to accept the fact that they saw the money flowing from the US for a long time, and are now seeing the fruits of letting the US become entrenched in EU politics, all for the sake of money.

the more powerful EU countries are as heavily invested in IP as the US, and if the US's IP holdings crash, the major players in the EU would go with it.

as much as the US needs to butt out, the EU needs to learn to say 'no', and keep out the prying eyes.

glyn moody said...

@jas: I quite agree. However bad the US actions, the EU's are worse for accepting them...