Politicians panic after law change could leave them open to surveillance


The world of politics is filled with people who many would consider to be out of touch with real life. All too often politicians are treated differently, and this has certainly been the case when it comes to NSA and GCHQ surveillance of phone and internet traffic. In the UK a court has ruled that a ban on intercepting politicians' communication is not valid.

The Wilson Doctrine -- named after former prime minister Harold Wilson -- stated that "there [will] be no tapping of the telephones of Members of Parliament". This has now been ruled to have no legal force, sending politicians into a fit of panic. They are due to hold an emergency debate next week.


The Investigatory Powers Tribunal decided that the Wilson Doctrine has no basis in law and politicians now fear that this could leave them open to the sort or surveillance that everyone else has been subjected to by the NSA and GCHQ. Shadow Commons leader Chris Bryant said that the ruling introduced ambiguity and "to all intents and purposes, it means that the Wilson doctrine is dead".

On 19 October, MPs will debate what should be done in light of the ruling. They have previously relied on Harold Wilson's statement to ensure that their communications were left untouched. Bryant feels that the erosion of the Doctrine was dangerous, saying that there were no assurances that MPs would remain protected:

The right of members of this House to be able to represent their constituents without fear or favor is intrinsic to our democracy. It is the cornerstone of the bill of rights and it is one of the most ancient freedoms of this country. In another era, before the existence of telephones and emails it meant that MPs and peers, even in war, had a right for their written correspondence not to be intercepted or be interfered with.

Calls are being made to determine whether or not politicians' communication has been targeted for interception.

Photo credit: Business plus / Shutterstock

12 Responses to Politicians panic after law change could leave them open to surveillance

  1. itsgpgo says:

    Politicians think they are above the Law toooooooo.....and police also think the same way...no one is above the Law, what is good for the goose is good for geese...

    • ATL_VM says:

      >>what is good for the goose is good for geese...<,

      At least get the damn phrase correctly..

      What's good for the goose is good for the gander...

      • itsgpgo says:

        thank you very much, I think my age has something to do with it, I always like to be corrected in my grammar usage...

      • no says:

        Well, except that the saying goes "what's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander".

        And except that the gander is the male goose.

        And you wanted correct, not correctly.

        Other than that your correction went well.

  2. But, if they've got nothing to hide, they shouldn't be afraid... Right? ;)

    • ATL_VM says:

      that's right.. being transparent will go a long way to FREEDOM

      • 1DaveN says:

        Because if you can't trust the government, who can you trust?

        Go on Wikipedia and search "Nixon's enemies list" if you want to find out the truth of that statement. After you give them all your information, you can expect an IRS audit as soon as your politics disagree from those in power. Enjoy!

  3. WP7Mango says:

    Excellent news! :-)

  4. ATL_VM says:

    >> In the UK a court has ruled that a ban on intercepting politicians' communication is not valid.<<

    So now I know where it starts.. why did the colonists LEAVE England in the first damn place? They are not here to defend their decision, yet people can't understand what a MONARCHY is.. we don't LIVE in a Monarchy so why are acting like one?

    Security is everyone's job not just NSA, this STARTS with KNOWING your neighbors.. ALL information should be freely available, what is the problem with that?

    Damn the government laws and NSA *I* Want to know who you people are, I don't trust or KNOW any of you people.. Give me numbers, addresses names.. *I* want this information... You have nothing to hide PROVE IT!

    • Bob Grant says:

      You start... Give us a detailed itemized list of your financials, every phone call you make and receive, your home address, licence plate number/s, etc.

  5. Bob Grant says:

    Maybe they'll actually do something about the surveillance now, instead of ignoring it.

  6. Great opportunity for all of you to make $5000 to $8000 every month....It's easy just have a internet connection and a p.c to earn money

    ======>>>>>Visit my account for URL


© 1998-2020 BetaNews, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy - Cookie Policy.