Monday, September 27, 2010

NSW Terrorism Laws - Thin End of The Wedge As Bad Old Days Return.

Here is part of an article by Richard Ackland of The National Times. I heard on the ABC radio news this morning, some terrorist "expert" whose name I didn't catch has seriously suggested that our police and armed forces be trained in "urban warefare".

I guess this means if I decide to protest aginst the war in Afghanistan the NSW police will have the correct training to deal with me!

The training may also help the police when I protest against the Watermelon Party's plans to confiscate my legally acquired and licensed firearms, to stop me from going fishing, and from driving my four wheel drive.

Let the article begin:

"In the good old days of policing, those bullnecked old thumpers knew how to get their man. Accused were verballed, evidence planted and fishing expeditions mounted.

Police powers were pretty wide and all those smart, overweight cops who hung around Chinese restaurants into the late afternoon could sidestep the rules and regs without too much strife. Bribery was rife, evidence and witnesses ''disappeared'', and if material facts were not distorted, they were withheld. ''Scrumdowns'', where cops would collude to present a unified story, were the order of the day.

The royal commission into the NSW police was supposed to have changed all that. What happened after Justice Jim Wood reported his findings and recommendations in 1997 was a system of ''policing by law''. Procedures were tightened by which police power was supposed to be exercised.

What's been happening in recent times is the surreptitious unstitching of ''policing by law'' and a return to powers that are ill-defined and lightly supervised. This is a direct consequence of the war on terrorism.

The NSW government has been doing its brave bit to make us all safe from terrorism. In fact Attorney-General John Hatzistergos announced this month his government ''has made counterterrorism a top priority''. To that end, the use of covert search warrants under the Terrorism (Police Powers) Act will be extended, even though these special warrants have only been applied for five times and granted three times.

This act was NSW's response to the attacks of September 11, 2001, and the covert warrants power was supposed to expire on September 13. It will be kept alive and kicking for three more years.
Special powers under this law come into being whenever a senior police officer has ''reasonable grounds'' for thinking there might be a terrorist attack in the ''near future''. An authorisation is then given by the minister for police, although in some circumstances, if he's busy at a sauna or fund-raiser with property developers, the authorisation can happen without the say-so of the minister."

If you can drag your sheeple arse away from Masterchef then catch the full article here:

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