By Helena Handbasket, February 14th 2020

When is a door not a door? An old joke I know, the answer being, when it’s ajar.

When is a back door not a back door? When a fascist state stakes a claim to your privacy by hacking into your private information using a technological rear entrance, and that’s not a joke.

Mind you, Leo Varadkar is used to using back doors for his own needs, Hanging out the washing in his garden on a daily basis which I’m sure he does in private, at least I hope so, but you never know with psychopaths, so we shouldn’t be surprised at this latest penetration of what people across the globe fought two world wars for in the last century and a bit, and are allegedly still doing in the Middle East. That is, of course, the right to freedom, which includes the freedom from government spying on you whenever it feels it has the right to do so, which it seems is 24/7, and this latest buggery of our privacy is no different.

I don’t know about you, but bending over and taking it up the rear end isn’t my idea of what a so called democracy is supposed to be about.

The Irish Independent, which ironically has privacy settings for it’s online readers, and I’m sure would object vehemently if it’s reporters had their phones tapped (I wouldn’t be surprised if they already do).

The Irish Independent published two articles yesterday, Feb. 13th, one on the issue of the Garda chief (the Irish police force chief) demanding changes to the law to allow police officers, and I assume other law enforcement agencies, to snoop on anyone, anytime, anywhere, for anything they want. The excuse given is that it will help police in cases of serious crime, including child abuse. The logic behind this new abuse of the general public is never explained of course, the assumption being that the public will see the phrase ‘child abuse’ and think, “Oh Jesus, sorry Allah, sorry Buddha, sorry??? We need to give up all our rights to catch those evil child abusers who download child porn images to their phones.”

Well, of course we do. But what did the police do before people had mobile phones? Oh yes, police work. They didn’t have police officers tapping every landline telephone in the country. They did proper police investigations. Well, that’s the theory, but of course the truth is far removed from that and abuse was and is still a major societal issue, not just in Ireland, but across the world. There have been many cases where perpetrators have been caught virtually red handed and yet courts have handed out lenient if not outrageously light sentences, in cases were judge Martin Nolan is involved they have even walked free for a crime which affects their victims for a lifetime, many actually committing suicide or turning to alcohol and drugs to cope with life. So child abuse is a serious issue, as is child pornography; the two inextricably linked.

But here’s the kicker. In the same edition of the Independent internet firms have agreed with the Gardi to block child porn sites so that these cannot be accessed and these types of images can’t be accessed and shared amongst pedophiles through domestic and presumably business networks.

That being the case, why hasn’t this already been done? Why only child porn sites? Why not all porn sites? Oh yes, porn addicts have rights and they have the right to privately view pornography in the privacy of their own homes… But hey, that’s normal behaviour, right? Wrong! It is not normal to want to watch porn, of any Varadkariety. It has been proven to be mentally damaging to both men and women viewers, not to mention those forced to take part in it, many drug addicts or trafficked women, and men I presume, to ‘perform’ in these movies.

The Pirate Bay is an online platform which is used to illegally share all forms of content, movies, music, software, documents etcetera and has been targeted for many years, along with other peer to peer sharing sites by governments who have been lobbied to block these sites to stop the illegal transfer of copyrighted material. Why is that it is only such sites which have been targeted? Is it because it costs corporations money in lost sales? Probably.

But why have porn sites, including child porn sites, torture sites, etcetera, not been targeted in the same way? If they had been then police would have no excuse to use as a means of spying on every individual in the country at a whim from any police officers who want to, let’s say, spy on his neighbour, or a neighbour’s wife or husband, or even their pre-teen children? Children are getting phones at a younger age more than ever and surely this leaves them vulnerable to elements within the police who are less than decent human beings.

Police officers may as well say, “We have to sit in your house and guard you just in case you’re broken into.”

People are not children who need the protection of snooping police officers who somehow think they have rights to your privacy without you having a right to theirs.

How about the public being given access to the phones of politicians? After all, the public pays for those phones and therefore has more right than anyone to know what they’re used for. And while we’re at it, why not give us all access to their email accounts, both personal and work related? And how about access to their bank accounts that they stuff with our money, both legally and illegally? How about we have access to background checks on all politicians and law enforcement employees to see if we want them to be in a job? And how about judges who give out bizarre sentences to serious criminals, including rapists and child abusers? How about we have access to files related to how they make their decisions in the privacy of smoky back rooms? How agencies that deal with public health? Solicitors? Doctors?

 The list is endless, but the focus always seems to be turned on the general public, 99.9% of whom are law abiding people. The same can’t be said about the list above.

No, if Varadkar or any other corporate puppet wants to penetrate our private particulars then they can stick it up their arses, although I have a feeling some may enjoy that more than others.