I Blame Nick Clegg
Nick Clegg’s article in The Guardian today, trying to justify the smashing of that newspaper’s hard drives and the detention of the partner of one of its journalists, is yet another exercise in hypocritical sophistry.
As a defender of what Clegg still calls, hyperbolically, “the worst excesses of Labour authoritarianism”, I don’t feel strongly about destroying data on hard drives and my complaint about the detention of David Miranda is that it should have been done under national security rather than anti-terrorism law.
What drives me potty is Clegg’s attempt to pretend that the actions of the coalition are compatible with his high-pitched sanctimony attacking the Labour government. The present government, like its predecessor, is trying to balance national security with individual liberty, which is not as easy as he pretended it was in opposition.
No wonder the cliché count is high: “tread the fine line”; “a bridge too far”; Labour, “a party hard-wired to trample on those liberties”.
And how fitting that he should get his comeuppance. A sentence has been removed from the article “for legal reasons”. This is because ministers are not supposed to comment on things which are the subject of legal proceedings. Clegg has responsibilities now and cannot just spout easy platitudes about how everything this government does is right because its motives are pure.Tagged in: civil liberties, nick clegg
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