Hence, it's especially disturbing to discover that we already have censorship of non hard core porn sites in Australia.
ACMA (Australian Communications and Media Authority) has just threatened an ISP with an $11,000 a day fine if they did not remove a link to an anti-abortion web site.
Furthermore, pages to Wikileaks, which describe the Danish internet censorship list and the Wikileaks press release about this have been blacklisted by ACMA. As Wikileaks comments:
The first rule of censorship is that you cannot talk about censorship.Wikileaks has demonstrated through the publication of the censorship lists in Denmark, Thailand and Finland that:
- Australia secretly censors Wikileaks press release and Danish Internet censorship list, 16 Mar 2009
- these lists leak
- invariably these lists are expanded from pornography to other material, including political material. For example, the Thai list contains sites banned for criticising the Royal Family.
Reporters Without Borders, in a report on enemies of internet freedom last week, added Australia to its 'watch list' of countries that might be imposing anti-democratic internet restrictions that could open the way for abuses of power and control of information. The main issue cited was the Australian government's proposed internet censorship schemeAs I wrote earlier:
- Australia's internet censor bares its gums
I see this as part of a more general pattern where the "caring parties" advocate policies which end up destroying our freedom and initiative - net nannies, risk aversion, artificial inclusion, welfare dependency, cultural relativism (the freedom of other cultures to suppress women, practice honour killings, genital mutilation etc.), the State as big brother who will keep an eye on you under the guise of protecting you. The caring collectivist parties like the Australian Labour Party are far more likely to support these sorts of policies than the parties that are more ideologically aligned with the notion of individual liberty.
- Do you really want to be free?