“if you include a link to a site “where hate material is posted”, you could go to jail for two years.”
This is how, as a Canadian commentator explains:
If you wanted to confirm the notion that elections are a waste of time, you could hardly do it more swiftly than the new Canadian Conservative majority government is with its omnibus crime bill. Clause Five criminalizes the “hyperlink” – that’s to say, if you include a link to a site “where hate material is posted”, you could go to jail for two years.[ … ]
It’s happening because it’s the kind of remorseless incremental annexation of individual liberty to which the permanent bureaucracy has become addicted. And, as I always say, the lesson of the post-Second World War west is that you don’t need a presidency-for-life if you’ve got a bureaucracy-for-life. It’s an outrageous law, poorly written. For example, you might link to a harmless bit of fluff at blandpap.com, but two years later somebody might have posted some “hate material” in a far corner of that site that you’ve never read and have never linked to. Tough. As the typically crappily drawn law currently stands, you’re guilty of a crime. – Mark Steyn
This law may well pass for the simple reason that politicians want an opportunity to silence any inconvenient person who has access to the Internet, merely by getting a staff member to research all links they have made until something incriminating is found. All federal parties in Canada supported legislation making it a criminal offence for private citizens to gather information on candidate’ views on issues and disseminate it – because the political class as a whole wanted to control what issues could be raised during an election. (A court later struck that law down.)
And if you don’t think some of your fellow citizens would like a law of this type for your country, you may not know them as well as you think.
Three key errors that people who want a future make (errors that cost them money and waste their time):
1. Voting Conservative/Republican as if that is going to solve something. Almost all members of the political class today think the same: They think they can run your life better than you can. The words they use may differ according to the tastes in masters they think they are appealing to.
Many people assume that the dismal Republican performance in cutting the country-killing deficit in the United States is due to loss of nerve or incompetence. No, it is due to being members of a governing class that could not imagine actually doing what constituents who voted mostly want: Quit spending their money on foolish projects. The political class is no longer capable of quitting; the system will collapse first. Put bluntly: Its hard core support now comes mainly from the beneficiaries of those projects.
2. Imagining some help from the private sector (good, old-fashioned free enterprise and all that). The private sector is in business to make money, period. It can make money under oppressive government or responsible government. Responsible government is a civilized taste, whether in ancient Athens or today, not a common one. Worldwide, most people prefer a self-proclaimed saviour ranting from high on a platform. And business goes along with whatever sells – American Sign Language for deaf witnesses/defendants in the courts or government-paid ice cream at public executions of dissenters. It’s the paying customer who decided what the job is.
3. Mistaking bright spots for a general trend. Now and then someone who has incurred the anger of Islamists by warning against them gets acquitted of the “crime” of offending them. But that crime remains on the books, and others won’t be so lucky. When a raped girl was caned to death in Bangladesh recently (Islamic fatwa), widespread outrage ensued. But another girl will suffer a similar fate and never be heard of.
Will a collapse of government under seas of debt usher in a new era of freedom? No, because the people who most hate (really seriously hate) government of any kind are career criminals – unless they become the government, which they would, given a collapse. In some places, you wouldn’t notice a difference of course but in Toronto, for example, you would.
So what do I recommend? Individual declarations of independence. Mark Steyn has vowed to break the proposed law every chance he gets. I will too – though it won’t be very hard for me because lots of my posts are already considered “hate” by people who need the reassurance of stale deadbeat tax-funded ideas that never did any good for those who indulge in them but sound nice in the ear canal.