Skip to main content

Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Bill (DRIP)

I thought it was worthwhile putting a post on my blog that looks at the votes relating to this particular bill (during some of which votes I have rebelled and during others of which I have not).

Firstly there is a statutory instrument:

This is The Data Retention (EC Directive) Regulations 2009 No. 859 under this SI phone companies are required to hold certain information about phone calls and ISPs are supposed to keep track of who has what IP address.   Obviously this has been in place since 2009 and prior to that date other rules existed as to recording certain information relating to calls and internet access.

Obviously there are advantages to law enforcement in being able to get information about particular accounts and phone calls.  This was, in fact, used as part of the Aston Election Petition back in 2005 so although I don't know precisely what information was retained prior to 2009 it is clear that some information was.

All of this information is retained under the European Communities Data Retention Directive 2006/24/EC.  A legal case from Ireland to the European Court of Justice had the above directive declared invalid on 8th April 2014.  That does not necessarily mean that the SI 2009/859 is invalid, but it creates a significant doubt that needs to be resolved.

The key thing done by DRIP is to enable the government to pass another statutory instrument to reinforce 2009/859.  The proposed additional SI is on my website here:

I have, however, a number of concerns.

Firstly, I was unhappy that what was emergency legislation was drafted to last 2 1/2 years.  I have sponsored an amendment tabled by Tom Watson to reduce this period to 6 months.  I, therefore, voted against the timetabling motion (programme motion) because of the rushed timescale of consideration.

Secondly, I am concerned that the bill enables the government to do further things which I would not agree with.  The government may not do that.  Indeed to do it they would need a motion through the house of commons.  However, there are real difficulties with a bill that is getting so little consideration by the nation.

Hence although in principle I agree that something should be done (which is why I voted for the bill at second reading) this is not the right something.  I voted for the amendment to the sunset clause and when that failed I voted against the bill on the third reading.  I am likely to vote for the statutory instrument, however.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Millionaires and politics

The Labour Party spent most of the last election criticising me for being a successful businessman (aka millionaire). That is business in the private sector employing over 250 people. It is worth looking at the situation for the Labour Candidate now:

For the year 2016-7 Annual Income from Parliament74,962Specifically for her book51,250Other media income etc5,322.82Total declared income131,534.82

Traditionally anyone with an annual income of over £100,000 has been considered to be a millionaire. I did not use my position in parliament to increase my income.


I have been asked for sources for this. This BBC piece looks at how one should define rich. It was written in 2011 so the figures will be slightly out of date. There are perhaps 2 relevant pieces:
"In 1880 a rich person would have had £100,000 in assets or an income of £10,000 a year, he says. About a hundred people a year died leaving £100,000 and by 1910 this was 250 - "a microscopic fraction of the number of death…

Gender Issues comparison of candidates

John Hemming believes that an MP should represent everyone in their constituency.  This should be regardless of their race, religion, gender, abledness, sexual orientation or anything else.  It should be everyone.

When he was an MP he worked on issues relating to men, those relating to women and those relating to non-binary people. Everyone.

For example here is John Hemming on a demonstration outside the courts with the campaign group Women Against Rape (it related to the case of a mother who had her child removed from her because the mother was raped).




Jess Phillips, who campaigns on women's issues, notwithstanding the questions asked about her appointments in her parliamentary office, had the following response when asked for a debate on issues specifically relating to men:

The Labour Candidate's Book Promotion Tour and Why It Matters

In the 2015 General Election the Labour Candidate criticised John Hemming for having an external interest and made a pledge that she would be a "Full Time MP for Yardley and my only other job will be mom & carer ...".  Here is a copy of that pledge:


Since that point she has been working on paid Television Programmes and has also written a book. John Hemming has made no secret of the fact that he chairs the board of the company he founded in 1983. This involves one meeting a month. When he was the MP for Yardley he was a full time MP and the Job of being MP for Yardley came first. The Labour candidate has reported 1,274 hours of work other than being an MP in the two years she has been elected and her income in the last year was over £131,000.

Ignoring the question as to how she reconciles that with her "pledge" the question is raised as to what extent her external activity conflicts with the role of Member of Parliament for Yardley. She is supposed to de…