Wise Up Journal
by Benjamin Smith-Kavanagh
Part 1 deals with the current lack of knowledge why privacy was so important to previous generations and how political “experts” in all parties have publicly admitted the freedoms of people enshrined in the constitution, that which they are to abide by, is hampering their self labeled draconian new laws. We also see that when privacy succumbs, abuse by authority figures and tyranny rises.
As we become ever more embedded with the technology and distractions of the globalised 21st Century, one word which used to have huge importance to people and was largely considered as a necessity or cornerstone to any free and democratic society, a word that is even enshrined in the American as well as the Irish constitution has unfortunately become increasingly eroded in its stature. This word has even lost all meaning to most of the new generation, that word is privacy. Do you know why previous generations thought it was so important?
Indeed over the few last year alone the Irish government have imposed and proposed multiple laws/measures that directly violate people’s constitutional right to privacy. The latest case being by Environment minister John Gormley, with his proposal to allow police to break into people’s homes and vehicles to turn off alarms. After which they would bill the owner for any damage they do to the property. He was forced to admit it may violate the constitution but said if he can introduce the measure he will.
Govt: Garda break-ins to silence alarms
Proposed tough new powers allowing garda to break into houses and cars to turn off noisy alarms could run into legal difficulties, the government admitted today.
Householders would be invoiced for the costs incurred by garda called to disable the alarms.
Mr Gormley said: “We’ve put it in as part of the process, if there are too many difficulties, constitutional difficulties, it may not be part of the legislation.”
Mr Gormley said if the Attorney General says the move is legal under the constitution, the government will pursue it.
“There are many other steps that we can take and that is a fairly draconian one.”
“The point is, what are the legal implications, can it be done easily, are there severe constitutional difficulties?
As you will no doubt see from reading that article, if John Gormley can get away with introducing laws/measures that he himself called draconian he will. So with that lets imagine we do not have a constitution that protects our privacy and that law is now in place and the political “experts” have their way.
You and your family go away on holidays for a week and when you return you can not open the front door with your key, you then realise it’s a new door. You are puzzled, until your next door neighbour comes out to you and tells you, “oh the Gardai came and broke into your home, I was not in at the time, but they called back later and told me that your alarm was going off. So they had to break in and stop it, they gave me a key and an invoice for the cost of the new door/lock as well as the cost of taking up Gardai time. They were very considerate. They did not leave the invoice or new key at your door step, cause they said, it would let burglar’s know there was no one in. It cost six hundred Euro for the door and five hundred for their time incurred“. You and your wife are a bit broke after the holiday but thankful the “law” didn’t attempt a pointless drug search, as it would mean a lot of house cleaning on your first day back.
Before Gormley came out with his proposal that unlikely scenario would be something you would only expect to find in a Monty Python sketch. But that scenario is now something that could easily happen if we did not have a constitution to protect us from Gormley and the rest of the new breed of politicians in control of our government, which means in control of our country, which means in control of our daily lives.
John Gormley’s proposals directly put Gardai, who are there to protect people from dangerous criminals, into a position were they are in fact seen by the public as threat to their household. It is no surprise that the majority of Gardai are straight out against this proposal, the majority of which are outstanding individuals. Whom are far from wanting to break into people’s homes and vehicles, whom want to keep people safe from serious criminals. But like the majority of Gardai, the majority of the public fail to realise that the political “experts“ now see everyone as a criminal and as a way of extorting money to lien their own paranoid system.
Gormley admitted the constitution may stop him from invading people’s right to privacy which he no doubt wants to do. When Bertie Ahern, former Taoiseach (Prime Minister), was in power a few months back, who cites the constitution in his bribery hearings, actually claimed that Gardai have the power to raid and search people’s homes for drugs without the need of a search warrant. Ahern was later forced to admit that constitutionally they could not. But the fact that the former leader of the Irish government pretended not even to know what the government can and cannot do, shows you what a threat to people’s freedoms they are.
This issue was recently updated by the Irish Independent in which now Fine Gael justice spokesman Charlie Flanagan claims the constitution is stopping Gardai from harassing the public.
By Michael Brennan
The new measure would have allowed gardai to enter houses without a search warrant, as long as a senior officer suspected there was a risk of drugs being present. It could also have provided for random searches of people attending particular locations such as music-concert venues or nightclubs following on from the successful introduction of random testing for drink driving.
The issue of gardai raiding house parties caused controversy last year after former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern claimed officers had the power to do so under the Misuse of Drugs Act. He later had to admit that legally gardai would require a warrant to raid private homes.
Fine Gael justice spokesman Charlie Flanagan said the government should address the constitutional issues so the new powers could be given to gardai.
Gardai have carried out more than 46,000 drug searches in Dublin alone in the past three years. But Mr Flanagan said they were being “hampered” by the requirement to obtain search warrants in court for every operation.
With those examples you can see the leading party and the even so-called “opposition” party making serious attempts at eradicating the enshrined constitutional privacy rights of people, even though these politicians are there to ensure the constitution is upheld when introducing any laws or regulations.
With the parties having already publicly admitted the constitution might cause some problems for their draconian plans lets examine the parts of the constitution that is currently keeping the government parties from violating our rights:
Bunreacht Na hÉireann: A Study Of The Irish Text by Micheál Ó Cearúil – LITERAL ENGLISH TRANSLATION
“The State guarantees not to interfere by its laws with the personal rights of any citizen, and it further guarantees to defend and assert those rights with its laws in so far as it is possible.”
Article 40.3.10 means the personal right to privacy, the personal right to not be searched or harassed by Gardai without probable cause, the personal right to live freely without government interference and if any thing is done that goes against your personal rights the government has to by law correct and ensure it does not happen again.
“His place of residence is secure for every citizen, and it is not permitted to go into it forcibly except in accordance with law.
“By the State guarantees not to interfere by its laws with the personal rights of any citizen, and it further guarantees to defend and assert those rights with its laws in so far as it is possible.”
Article 40.5 means you are innocent and have all your rights until after you are proven guilty. Unless a Gardai or other authority can already produce evidence (drugs, stolen goods, illegal weapons…) which can be checked and presented to higher ups and judges they have no right to force their way into any private property such as a home or vehicle.
In order to understand the true importance of privacy, you must first understand why it is enshrined in the Irish constitution. For hundreds of years Ireland was under foreign rule were the majority of people were seen as nothing more than subjects, even slaves, to the British state. During which time the authorities here were given a free pass to do whatever they wanted to the people, this would include forcing their way into homes, searching/harassing people for nothing but the fact that they could do so. This power attracted a certain breed of person and allowed such authorities to commit and get away with serious crimes themselves against the powerless public like rape, torture, and murder.
Mass corruption was strife as there were no checks and balances to make sure the authorities did not abuse and exploit the people of the nation. Many of the people who wrote our constitution and the public who cried out for it’s enactment knew first hand what happenings occur when government authorities can do as they please… they become tyrants. That is why the right to privacy is enshrined in the constitution, to protect us from abuses and tyrants.