This story in The Age by Paul Martin about secret police files being given to a commercial entity by the Brumby government absolutely astounded and disgusted me.
I'm almost speechless when I read the pathetic justifications for rampant, gross breaches of privacy in this story.
I understand the corruption of government and the complicity of police yet this one made me do one of those cartoon double-takes when I read the headline and first paragraph. To then read further and see that:
"Victoria Police last night said it was routine for police to sign such deals with organisations building big public projects where there were potential security risks."
was *almost* an incredibly good joke.
Here are some of the pathetic justifications for government and police corruption in the article:
"Under a deal struck by the State Government in a bid to ensure the project is finished before Melbourne runs out of water, Victoria Police has agreed to hand over photos, video recordings and other police records to the international consortium AquaSure to help it ''manage'' protests and potential security threats."
"The Department of Sustainability and Environment, which signed the desalination memorandum with Victoria Police and AquaSure, last night confirmed such agreements were common for major projects."
''The sharing of information will be done without breaching privacy laws,''
''Police have a responsibility to minimise security risks and the potential for damage to projects. Our responsibility is not only to the project company, it's also to the community and public infrastructure.''
This betrayal of trust is how we are protected?
Every now and then I lull myself into the belief that I'm past being shocked by governments and yet this still got a rise out of me.