back to article Tories will scrap 'pre-crime' vetting

An incoming Conservative government would take steps to cut the vetting database down to size and would balk at 'pre-crime' behavioural vetting techniques. Tory opposition to key elements of the Vetting and Barring process proposed by the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) emerged last night at a meeting of the …


This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. nematoad
    Big Brother

    I won't be the first or last

    I won't be the first but this is 1984 come true. The Onset programme is of course concentrating on thought crime. Perhaps when we get a new government they will finally rename the Home Office/ Ministry of Justice to the Ministry of Love. "Scotty beam me up!"

  2. Anonymous Coward

    Sex for stress relief.....

    ...well that's much of the adult population shafted....

    Oh look a new coat....

  3. Jacqui

    ISA vets politicians

    Of course the next step is to vet politicians and blokc any that fail such vetting.

    And the ISA will consider anyone who does not think they do a spiffing job as subversive so can never become an MP.

    Stalin would have *loved* the way this country is run ;-(

  4. Eponymous Cowherd
    Big Brother

    Beyond 1984

    We are now in Minority Report territory.

    Big Brother.

    Not only does he know what you are doing. He now knows what you are *going* to do, even if *you* don't.

  5. Bunglebear
    Thumb Down

    I'm scared

    What if I tell them my favourite film is Care Bears - The Movie? Can I work anywhere then?

    Seriously though, this is widespread profiling and its neither justifiable to feasible.

  6. The Original Ash
    Black Helicopters

    Is it just me...

    ... or does this seem a *lot* like Gordo is setting up the Conservatives for the next seat in No. 10? Backing all of this Draconian legislation which the 'Tories promise to scrap...

    Makes me wonder what the Tories are planning.

    And whether enough people in the country have heard of the Lib Dems.

  7. Graham Marsden
    Big Brother

    Fine words...

    ... but will they be transformed into actions?

    Or will the Tories get into power and then suddenly decide that "Oh, maybe it is useful to hold onto this information after all..."

  8. LuMan


    Not at all flawed this. I like looking at nuns. This means I also like The Sound Of Music. As a result I'm likely to remove the distributor cap of the nearest German military vehicle I see*.

    So, I'm a sexual pervert, a homosexual and anti-establishment activist.

    Yep - spot on!

    *Go on - watch the film..!

  9. Neil Bauers

    Virtualisation of Personalities

    I am able to support multiple virtual personalities. I used my Dastardly and Mutley virtual personalities to do my university final exams. I'm now working on one, suitably ridiculous, for this database.

  10. Ally J
    Paris Hilton

    Can we get a list of banned materials?

    As many have already pointed out, this is gloriously Stalinesque. What's the view on '1984'?

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    My favourite film...

    ... has naked women covered in blood.

    ... is a weepy romance

    ... teaches the need to take responsibility for your diet

    ... shows two main characters opening a condom packet before sex.

    ... ends with a woman's life being saved by the power of love.

    ... is BBFC classified.

    So I'm screwed then?

    Utopia has banned neuroses

    punishes illegal thought.

    The people nurse in static poses

    neurotic fears of being caught.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I have my magic predisposition glasses, I put them on, and I can see if someone or something is predisposed to particular crimes.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @I'm scared

    No way, if you like care bears your obviously a wild bum loving paedophile! You have to like something benign and middle of the road, Friends, Sleepless in Seattle, and Titanic, are all nice safe pointless things to like. You'd need to do research into boring block buster hit movies preferably with 15 certificates.

    All behavioural tests are rubbish anyway, just remember to answer all the same questions the same way to create the desired result.

    scale strongly agree agree neither disagree strongly disagree

    "Do people irritate you?"

    "Are people irritating?"

    "Do you enjoy being around people?"

    "Have you ever found people annoying?"

  14. Elmer Phud

    Old ways are best

    Good to see the Tories say there's no need for pre-crime vetting. It's been in operation for years anyway - 'has a youth got a hoodie?', 'what colour are they?', 'do they live on an estate?' are only modern versions of 'is this a poor person?', 'are they a Johnny foreigner?', 'Eton or Local Authority education?'.

  15. The Cube

    Will their pre-crime database be able to detect

    The next Guy Fawkes before a second honest man enters Parliament?

    Perhaps they should ask Amazon to supply them with lists of every recommendation they make to customers? I recall an early version recommended to me;

    The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger

    Fahrenheit 451 (Flamingo Modern Classics) - Ray Bradbury

    Animal Farm - George Orwell

    A Clockwork Orange (Essential Penguin) - Anthony Burgess

    Brave New World Revisited (Flamingo Modern Classics) - Aldous Huxley

    To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee

    Breakfast of Champions - Kurt Vonnegut

    Now clearly I must be the sort of anti-government subversive whom the Metropolitan Stasi should detain at the Home Secretary's request? I mean, obviously I am a seriously deranged criminal or the Amazon vetting ^h^h^h^h recommendations engine would not have recommended such books?

    The truly sad part - There is no way the incompetent turnip-munchers in our farce of a government or the shower of shits that they outsource to will ever even come close to the analysis Amazon and Google do every day.

  16. kissingthecarpet

    @Fine Words

    Of course they will. Anyone who votes Tory because they want more freedom is very confused

  17. Paul Hates Handles


    ...a pic of the precogs...

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down


    How are they supposed to find out what your favorite film is? it seems the only way would be to ask you and you could say anything.

  19. Gordon is not a Moron

    Re: Fine words

    probably, look at response over the drugs advisory council.

    Labour - ignore advice, sack people who disagreed with the party line and get a well deserved kicking

    LibDems - say they would have taken the advice and acted accordingly

    Tories - won't publicly comment on what they would have have done, which translates to - Would have done the same as Labour, but as they're getting a roasting we'll shut up and hope nobody notices

  20. MinionZero
    Big Brother

    Translating political spin doctor two faced double talk...

    "cut the vetting database down to size" and "balk" etc..

    In other words, we will not cancel it, but we will make it smaller (at the moment) to imply we are using it more responsibly to target only real criminals. Also we will “balk” at any existing name for it and make sure we rename it, so we can say, hand on heart, we have destroyed what it was (even though we know it will continue to exist under a different name). (Disclaimer, at no point will we be limiting ourselves, by defining every form of real criminal that our “new pre-crime” can catch. We will just say, it can catch crimes such as this crime FUD #1, and this crime FUD #2, and this one FUD #3 etc.. but we will be very careful to leave it open ended (after all it maybe useful in solving political activity we consider wrong, like any view that seeks to oppose us).

    It would be very interesting to use pre-crime against the politicians. But then we don't really need it. After all for centuries they all end up showing they all want the same thing. Ever more Money and Power, and peasant people like us are all the exploited losers every time.

    What we need to do, is create laws to vet everyone who seeks political power, to prevent Narcissists (and worse) gaining power over us all ever again. Until that time, we are always going to be endlessly exploited and fooled by the greedy, two faced, lying, arrogant, self centered, Narcissistic, Machiavellian manipulations.

    If we could apply that political vetting idea to every country, we would finally almost make war obsolete. I say almost, because the other half of the problem is the Narcissists also need to be prevented from ever being allowed to be managers and employers to prevent the corporations behaving collectively like psychopaths. (Kind of like having a dog license. So treat the dogs ok, you can keep dogs. Treat them poorly then you get banned from ever owning dogs. Same with employees).


    If we could finally target the Narcissists we would also solve so many crimes, as it takes a serious lack of empathy for criminals to treat their victims with so much contempt. But then the people in power don't want the Narcissists to be outlawed as it would highlight them as part of the group in society that are the real core problem in every society. Which is why no government in history has ever truly tried to outlaw such behavior. They don't want us to see through their lies as then their lying behavior becomes less effective at fooling all of us.

    The more people who can learn to recognize the two faced power seeking manipulators, then the more people who will be protected from being victims and the more society will be able to avoid the Narcissists gaining such power over us all. If we fail to stop them, then its only a matter of time before we end up suffering another Hitler in Europe, (most likely in the UK this time, given the rapid growth of Narcissistic behavior in UK politics).

    Imagine Europe run with that kind of extremely self centered arrogant leadership with the power of pre-crime style technology to seek out political opponents to silence any call for fairness and mercy. :(

    Sooner or later that will be our future, unless everyone stands together against the Narcissists. :( ... (only together can we oppose them). Its only a matter of time and time is fast running out, especially given the ever faster rate they are exploiting ever more technology to give them ever more power over us all. Cluster B disorders are a nightmare to be around and giving them ever more power over us all, is an ever growing nightmare for us all and a nightmare we cannot avoid. Sooner or later we will be forced to stand against them and no election is going to stop this nightmare, as all political parties have the same kind of people in them. Sooner or later we are all going to have to stand up and defend Democracy against the actions of the people in power who seek to undermine it for their own gain, otherwise we won't have any Democracy at all and so we will end up becoming ever more exploited losers, until it becomes unbearable and this time its becoming a global problem, so there will be no where to run and escape it all. Political exploitation of technology in the hands of Narcissists is a nightmare so bad none of us will be able to avoid it in time. ... looks like we are all about to add another nightmare lesson to the history books and we will keep adding lessons until the Narcissists are stopped.

  21. RW

    Form a Freedom Party

    With an explicit platform of repealing all of the insane Stalinist legislation NuLabour has imposed on the country. The country is worse of for NuLabour's cack-handed attempts at social engineering, so turn the clock back.

    Neither the Tories nor the LibDems have the balls to state that this is one of their goals because neither of those parties has clean hands in the matter.

  22. Anonymous Coward


    I seem to recall reading somewhere that politicians have a higher likely hood of getting a mental illness such as depression (current PrimeMentalist in point) than the rest of the population. So you're on to something with the Narcissists - down with Narcissists I say!

  23. Anonymous Coward

    score individuals on the basis of their attitudes and beliefs.

    Q: What's your opinion on politicians?

    A: I think we should get rid of all of them.

    Q: Uh oh, we've got a bad 'un here.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I wonder how long it will be before these fucktards reintroduce the "science" of physiognomy. After all it must be a hundred years since that fell out of favour.

    So what nulabour are into here is basically dealing in probability? They know full well that CRB vetting can't work because it only covers people who have already been found guilty of an offence. So they moved onto the enhance CRB check where just having been accused on a crime is enough to damn you. Interestingly you are better off if the accusation got as far as a court of law and you were cleared than if the decision was taken not to prosecute due to insufficient evidence.

    However all that still isn't good enough, so they are moving onto damning people simply on the basis of being likely to offend. Except of course we're only dealing with their definition of likely, it won't matter if people tarred with this brush never offend. Firstly because their judgement won't be proved wrong until the accused has died, so there will be nobody to pay compensation to. And secondly because they will have been "acting in good faith" and no doubt "thinking of the children".

    But how much is this going to cost the state in welfare? Pretty soon half the population will be unemployable and on benefits. After all the number of jobs for which CRB is required is ever expanding and the list of things that will ensure you fail the vetting process is getting longer. It won't be long before you won't be able to get a job as a street sweeper if you have ever been accused of looking at a policemen "a bit funny", or indeed being an amateur photographer.

    Of course you need need to be vetted for suitability to get a job as a social worker, that makes sense. It's a shame they don't vet the fuckers for competence as well. <SHIELDS>

    On a very serious point, back in 1997 I remember pointing out to anybody who would listen that a New Labour government would not be able to keep the civil service under control and we would end up living in a country run by the civil service. I wasn't alone in making that prediction and it was proved correct. However what has come as a surprise to me is that 12 years on they still haven't learned how to control their own servants. I'd assumed that after a few years they would get the hang of it. It seems Yes Minister was a predictive documentary, not a light entertainment show.

  25. Marvin the Martian

    Someway somehow unlikely.

    It's very cheap to promise now to cut down on db size.

    Let's see when they're in office: they'll get cold feet, when realising how they'll get roasted if anyone gets removed from the database then later turns out to commit a crime. Howling, bloodletting etc would ensue --- and statistically it's bound to happen. They'll see this, and just quietly leave it.

    Even if released prisoners commit less crimes than the general population, there's a thirst for blood whenever one reoffends.

  26. Parawhat?

    Penally Unsocial!

    Surely anyone opposing such measures would by definition be exhibiting 'strong anti-social beliefs' and therefore be guilty of 'pre-crime'???

    Opposing the government should surely be subject to antisocial behavior orders??

    As Tony Blair would have said, you can't get much more antisocial than attacking the government, now can you?

    Try to only think goodthoughts and support your government in their efforts to make you less unsocial.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Tories will roll back the silly vetting and monitoring laws.

    Just far enough so that it suits them and no further. Still, slightly better than this mob.

  28. Martin Usher
    Big Brother

    Oh, so innocent....

    >How are they supposed to find out what your favorite film is?

    a) You bought, rented or otherwise carried out a transaction to get it. If you didn't then you're automatically anti-social.

    b) Your favorite film is whatever they think it is. You're assuming facts are important in making determinations of suitability. If they were indeed using facts that were to the standard of evidence used in criminal justice cases then they wouldn't need the "Banned for 10 years no appeal" provision -- they need that to fend of the firestorm of protest from those falsely accused.

    This isn't Stalinist, either. Stalin's security apparatus used a far stricter standard of proof -- you had to be denounced by someone or something. It might have been total BS, aquired under "enhanced interrogation" or similar, but at least you could put a name to the accuser. The ISA doesn't need to go to all that trouble....enjoy.....

    BTW. Complaining too much or (gasp) protesting will put you automatically in the "FAIL" column.

  29. Anonymous Coward

    Ah well, if it goes out the window......

    Thats several million pounds of taxpayers money wasted again on another useless IT System. If it doesn't go out the window like it should, the system will be late, over budget by at least a factor of 4. wont be fit for purpose, will be insecure and staffed by drones who will score a persons life due to perceived beliefs.

    Lets see, quick profile of me...

    Ex- army = predisposition to violence

    Member of gun club = likes guns=bad

    Volunteer to help at my local riding school where I keep my own horse = pedo

    Love good old stress releasing sex = promiscuous

    Favorite film - Far to many to mention, I like war ones though = violent nature

    Looks like I'm not getting a job working with kids or the vulnerable persons any time soon. Ah well there goes any hope of ever getting a job in are work. Oh wait no, that's where I work already.

    Q. What happens if I get ISA vetted and fail. does that mean I cant work in my chosen firld again?

    Q. If I have to leave my job are the government responsible for that?

    Q When I go to sign on at the local job enter what do I say is my reason for unemployment?

    Emmmm, The government ISA database says i can't work in my chosen career so I'm here under no fault of my own, the government has basically caused me to be constructively dismissed.

    When asked what work I can do I can say well I have 22 years in care work, a clean criminal record, but I ghave no skills to work else where as I have been banned from my chosen profession.

    Time to get my coat I think

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Maybe the Tories will fix all this??

    Or maybe they'll have an attack of U-turn-itis once they get into power. Current signs aren't good.

  31. Anonymous Coward

    I'll give you bloody behavioural factors ...

    She adds: "The case worker will examine... 'predisposing factors', such as 'those factors relating to an individual's interests or drives'

    What about hating children because they're noisy, ask irritating questions and start crying when you shout at them to shut the fuck up?

    'cognitive factors', such as 'strong anti-social beliefs'

    Such as "why is this test unnecessarily instrusive", or "have you ever caught anyone who actually turned out to be a paedophile using this technique", or "fuck off and mind your own business you appalling nosy-parker: I'll show you mine only after you've shown me yours and I've verified to my satisfaction that it was actually yours and not one of your friend's (assuming you have any friends, of course)". What about "I hate most of humanity - you, in particular right now because you're asking me intrusive questions - I bet you get a thrill out of it, don't you, but you somehow justify it to yourself on the grounds that you're performing a necessary service and, well, it's not illegal so why not - is there any wonder I hate humanity when most human institutions seem largely designed to rape your self-respect and charity and turn you into a formless grey blob who's forgotten how to feel any fucking thing at all."

    'behavioural factors', including 'using substances or sex to cope with stress or impulsive, chaotic or unstable lifestyle. Drug use, sex life, favourite films'."

    'Substances'!? Like what? Tea, coffee, cigarettes? Do they count? What about compulsive eating disorders - is that OK? Why? Why is that OK? What about spying on other people for a living - does that count as sufficiently fucking unstable? What if I've watched so many films I don't have a favourite any more? Must I express a preference even though most films have begun to look identical to me and I rarely find anything engaging enough to hold my interest for more than 5 minutes at a time? Even SlumDog Millionaire left me bored and cold as yesterday's left-over refrigderated chicken.

    What a fucked-up nation of finger-pointers we are if we're even considering allowing this to happen.

  32. Robert McGregor

    So hold on a minute...

    The real issue underlying this is information or rather knowledge.

    The gaining of knowledge allows people to organise and lead others. Those with that knowledge know that to stay in power and control, they need to limit the knowledge gathering of everyone else or they will be get taken out of power.

    So in the pre-internet/pre-computer days it was easy, to gain knowledge, you read books and people could monitor your book intake and it was a chore and it was easier to spot people who planned to subvert.

    Now we enter a world where getting hold of information is easy, anyone can send anyone else anonymous information about such interesting things as manufacturing bombs, attacking Policemen, drinking moonshine, hacking phone systems, manufacturing heroin...

    You might want to question the good character of someone who might be talking about such things as those above but that cannot imply that everyone who seeks to learn about 'stuff' is a ciminal. In fact, I would suspect, that it is very close to profiling of an illegal nature. Surely those people who make design bombs for the MoD are just as dangerous, if not more so, yet they hold a position of power.

    I have to say that for me this boils down to protecting knowledge from the uneducated and doing it in such a cack-handed way that it just makes everyone out to be a criminial. Surely we should be looking at educating rather than hiding information. Explaining the risks of life and not sticking fingers in ears or over eyes and shouting LALALALALALA at the top of our voices.

    This whole story just tells us that those in power have finally realised that knowledge is out of control and is turning everyone against those who lead. This is bad and we apparently must all pay the price with our freedom.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Big Brother


    You can certainly see how Germany progressed from seeing Hitler as an irritation to genocide and a crack at the domination of Europe. Ten years ago, anyone who put forward even one of the daily stories we now get in the name of security (... blah, blah, etc, etc) would come to pass, would be labelled a nutter. Funny how the debate moves on from "hey, why are some of them dissing the message" to the darker "some people don't think the way we (Labour) think they should", to "they're all bloody criminals". I wonder when they'll get to "what we need is a really joined-up final solution without creating too many carbon emissions".

    As I've been saying with increasing frequency, this will all end with an ocean of blood, cattle trucks and ash pits for some poor group of people, and champagne-socialist/capitalist slavery for the rest.

This topic is closed for new posts.

Other stories you might like