"The state has no business in the hard drives of the nation."
That's Rick Mercer's take on the new Conservative online surveillance bill, which in its present form would require Internet service providers to give sensitive info, such as a user's IP address, to police and security agencies without a warrant.
Mercer hypothesizes that if the average citizen were told they had five minutes to live, they would spend a few of them deleting their hard drive. Not because they had committed a crime, but to protect their privacy.
That's just one of the reasons Mercer takes issue with Minister of Public Safety Vic Toews' campaign for the Protecting Children from Internet Predators Act.
Mercer is far from the first to express outrage over the new legislation. Over the past week Toews has faced attacks from the online-hacking group Anonymous, a Twitter user leaking information about his divorce, opposition parties, experts in online law and from Candians across the nation.
Mercer is confident Canadians aren't stupid enough to let the Tories peak into their hard drives without a warrant. And it looks like he may be right.
The Conservatives have sent the bill to committee early, a sign they are willing to take on amendments to the legislation's content.
If Mercer gets his way that's exactly what will happen. If not, the Tories should expect Canada's favourite ranter to keep the pressure on.
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