Sunday, August 05, 2007

Neil Harding and the DNA Database

Timmy has already drawn this comparison, but I shall do so here too. Here's Sam Leith in The Telegraph, talking about the National DNA database (and the whole article is worth a read).
What this is actually about is the police asking the Government to extend the powers of the state for its convenience. The argument in favour of the establishment, de jure, of a compulsory national DNA database has been lost. This is the first attempt to sneak it in - without any proper argument at all - de facto.

That is why it needs to be resisted. It is based on the alarming rationale that there exists an absolute divide (one expressed in an abrogation of your right to privacy) not only between all those who have ever broken any law and the rest of the population but also between all those who have ever been suspected of breaking the law and the rest of the population. That's not the characteristic view of a free society. Our privacy is something that belongs to us: not something the Government gives us, on probation, as a favour. They serve us: not vice versa. This may be a matter of principle, but it is one that could scarcely have more profound practical importance.

The only way to make absolutely certain that a national DNA database is not subject to abuse - by this police service or any successor police service; by this Government or any successor government - is to make absolutely certain that such a database does not exist in the first place.

And we compare this healthy attitude—published, I might remind you, in a traditionally socially authoritarian newspaper, catering for traditionally socially authoritarian Conservative readers—with the voice of NuLabour, Neil Harding.
Anyway, this argument, as I have already said is an aside, to be really fair we need to DNA database everybody - there need not be any stigma attached to being on this database.

Fuck the stigma, Neil; quite apart from the fact that my DNA, like my identity, belongs to me not to those who serve me, you have altogether too much faith in the accuracy of DNA. DNA testing does throw up false positives and it does get things wrong. It is not an exact science (or, at least, not on the level that the police test at).
I would gratefully add my details if everybody in society had to be on it - as the benefits to me (and society in general) would outweigh my inconvenience.

Really? Tell you what, Neil, why not just wander down to the police station and get them to take a swab now? You had better do so, because the police are going to get my DNA when they prise the swab from my cold, dead mouth. Fuck you, you totalitarian cunt.

Interestingly, of course, Neil is ideologically in favour of ID Cards which puts him in the same camp as arch-Tory, Tim Montgomerie: see how a fucking totalitarian Left-wing bastard meets a fucking totalitarian Right-wing bastard.

Truly, politics is a torus.


Longrider said...

Neil and I have been having a number of exchanges that demonstrate just how illiberal and intolerant he is of anyone who voices opinions or behaves in a manner that is "unacceptable" to the NuLab mindset. His willingness to go to the slaughter at his masters' behest is reminiscent of Boxer in Animal Farm. He was a useful idiot to the end, too.

Completely and utterly totalitarian, I'm afraid. That he is unable to grasp why his opinions are so derided by anyone who values liberty; despite it being explained in plain simple English leaves two possible explanations for his continued obtuseness; he is either completely and utterly stupid or he is mischievously disingenuous. Which, I wonder, is it?

ScotsToryB said...

Since the start of this debate I have wondered why no-one has said that the first people to lead by example, by giving, voluntarily, their DNA should be the police.

Why has no-one, apart from me, demanded this?


The Remittance Man said...


Why stop there? Why not have every elected and appointed official in the land (oh, and Neil) attend a DNA donation and ID Registration Centre?

If they took Big Brother off the air and dedicated the broadcast resources to transmitting the event live we could watch them being swabbed and branded.

Then when it was over, I'd still refuse to give the illiberal fuckers my details.

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

Do you think if we tried to wrap abortion, ID cards, drugs, gay marriage, small government and secularism in to one debate, Timmy's head would explode?

We could also invoke the "IDS isn't coming back. Ever." clause, just for good measure.

I still believe there needs to be an alternative to his ConHome (and not in the Platform 10 guise that Cameron's lot recently launched)- somewhere for libertarian and classic liberal conservatives (small 'c'). What happened to the "what's the point?" discussion, anyway? I had such high hopes for it...

Devil's Kitchen said...

If we are to have a LibHome, as it were, thhen we need to have a wealthy backer who is willing to pay a couple of people to monitor discussions and write pieces for the site.

As we have seen, trying to use volunteers is rather more tricky, 'cos everyone has to earn a living.

So, any millionaire libertarians want to back a LibertarianHome site, eh?


nsfl said...

And are Levy, Turner and co on the DNA database? I think not, even though they were arrested for an offence carrying a custodial sentence.

I, with no criminal record either, am on the database. And my profile can now be given to all of our 26 EU "partners". As Dr North has argued, that last fact is a consequence of the freedom of movement - you can't really argue against DNA sharing if you are in favour of the Treaty Of Rome. Which, funnily enough, I am not.

Chris said...

I'm waiting with baited breath for NuLabour to remove Orwell's 1984 from bookshelves.

It's bound to happen...

Harry said...

Since the start of this debate I have wondered why no-one has said that the first people to lead by example, by giving, voluntarily, their DNA should be the police.

Surely they do have to? Much like they are fingerprinted? I thought that happened routinely, so they don't get mixed up with marks left by suspects at crime scenes?

Oh yeah? So what has happened for the last ten years, exactly?

Over at the ASI, they are posting some of the winning entries of the Young Writers on Liberty. One does not want to put such keen minds off,...