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Friday, 17 April 2015

Proposed Online abuse laws

Lorraine Higgin's Bill
Higgins launches online abuse bill

Draft / Harmful And Malicious Electronic Communications Bill 2015

Mentioned in Seanad by Bacik, she mentions Law reform commission.



Pat Rabbitte's Bill

Rabbitte bill makes abusive electronic messages an offence
Public Electronic Communications Networks (Improper Use) Bill 2015: First Stage
Public Electronic Communications Networks (Improper Use) Bill 2015 [PMB] as initiated (in PDF format)
Public Electronic Communications Networks (Improper Use) Bill 2015 [PMB] Explanatory Memorandum (in PDF format)

Public electronic communications network

Subsection (2) defines a ‘‘public electronic communications network’’ in terms derived from the European Communities (Electronic Communications Networks and Services) (Framework)
Regulations 2011 (S.I. No. 333 of 2011)
.
Public Electronic Communications Networks (UK) means any communication network used by the public, (rather then public messages?).

Question:Does Rabitite's from direct private by telephone to public messages?

In this Bill I am addressing a gap in the legislation which in the Communications Regulation (Amendment) Act 2007 addressed messages by telephone only – excluding electronic communications or social media. The O’Neill Group recommended that the 2007 Act should be amended to include all electronic communications within the ambit of the prohibition on the sending of messages which are grossly offensive, indecent, obscene or menacing. In 2014 the Law Reform Commission agreed with the O’Neill Group’s recommendation to include electronic communications.

Internet Content Governance Advisory Group

Independent saying the bill is approved by Law Reform Commission because they agreed with one of the ICGAG's legislation recommendations. This is obviously not true.

Issues Paper on Cyber-crime affecting personal safety, privacy and reputation including cyber-bullying (LRC IP 6-2014)
Other relevant criminal offences2.08 Section 13, as amended, only applies to telephone and text messages. By contrast with
section 10 of the 1997 Act, it catches once-off events where there is no persistence or where it would
be difficult to prove. As noted above, the 2014 Report of the Internet Content Governance Advisory
Group has recommended that section 13 be amended to include electronic communications in the
definition of measures dealing with the “sending of messages which are grossly offensive, indecent,
obscene or menacing”
68 and the Commission agrees with this recommendation. At the launch of the
2014 Report, the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources stated that the
Government would prepare legislation to implement this recommendation.69
Post Office (Amendment) Act, 1951


Consultation Process
Tackling Cyber-bullying – the Law Reform Commission Calls for Discussion

Question:So why isn't government Minister initiating this bill, as was recommended? waiting for Law Reform Commission report?

online and text message bullying to be criminalised
Communications Minister announces new framework for the oversight of internet content

Internet Content Governance Advisory Group

3.3 Recommendations page 33
We, therefore, recommend the amendment of the Communications Regulation (Amendment) Act 2007 to include ‘electronic communications’ within the definition of measures dealing with the ‘sending of messages which are grossly offensive, indecent, obscene or menacing’. Further, we advise that the Minister for Communications bring to cabinet the recommendation that the Minister for Justice, in conjunction with the Attorney General and the High Court Rules Committee, establish a review of the suitability of current non-party discovery and disclosure rules of court, to bring current court discovery and disclosure processes in line with societal and technological norms.


Legislative measures page 11
15. We recommend that the Communications Regulation (Amendment) Act 2007 be amended to include ‘electronic communications’ within the definition of measures dealing with the
‘sending of messages which are grossly offensive, indecent, obscene or menacing’.
16. Further, we advise that the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources suggest that the Minister for Justice, in conjunction with the Attorney General and the High
Court Rules Committee, establish a review of the suitability of current non-party discovery and disclosure rules of court, to bring current court discovery and disclosure processes in
line with societal and technological norms.

3.2 Legislative and policy responses
ii. Communications Regulation (Amendment) Act 2007
The Communications Regulation (Amendment) Act 2007, Section 13 amends a pre-existing offence under the Post Office (Amendment) Act 1951 with reference to the use of the telephone system by anyone who:
(a) sends by telephone any message that is grossly offensive, or is indecent, obscene or
menacing, or
(b) for the purpose of causing annoyance, inconvenience, or needless
anxiety to another person–
(i) sends by telephone any message that the sender
knows to be false, or
(ii) persistently makes telephone calls to another person without reasonable cause.
Communications Regulation (Amendment) Act 2007 PART 2

Section 13

Substitute the following section:

“Offences in connection with telephones.

13.—(1) Any person who—

(a) sends by telephone any message that is grossly offensive, or is indecent, obscene or menacing, or

(b) for the purpose of causing annoyance, inconvenience, or needless anxiety to another person―

(i) sends by telephone any message that the sender knows to be false, or

(ii) persistently makes telephone calls to another person without reasonable cause,

commits an offence.

(2) A person found guilty of an offence under subsection (1) is liable on conviction―

(a) if tried on indictment, to a fine not exceeding €75,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 5 years, or to both, or

(b) if tried summarily, to a fine not exceeding €5,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months, or to both.

(3) A contravention of this section is an offence under the Post Office Act 1908.

(4) On convicting a person for an offence under subsection (1), the court may, in addition to any other penalty imposed for the offence, order any apparatus, equipment or other thing used in the course of committing the offence to be forfeited to the State.

(5) In this section, ‘message’ includes a text message sent by means of a short message service (SMS) facility.”.
Amendment of Post Office (Amendment) Act 1951

mentions Law Reform commission consultation
https://twitter.com/Tupp_Ed/status/536804436396736512
http://www.google.ie/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=7&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CEMQFjAG&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.rte.ie%2Fnews%2F2014%2F1119%2F660619-cyber-harassment%2F&ei=IWYxVdW5LKKs7Aa4voC4Bg&usg=AFQjCNHfXHGJvljb_GgkAadEzHzWMen7Kw&sig2=EiLGsVO_kmR3blxkMwyImA&bvm=bv.91071109,d.ZGU
http://www.irishtimes.com/news/crime-and-law/got-any-views-on-cyberbullying-laws-now-is-the-time-to-speak-1.2005937
http://www.irishtimes.com/news/crime-and-law/greater-urgency-needed-in-fight-against-cybercrime-1.1588522
http://www.irishtimes.com/business/technology/will-verdict-of-us-online-freedom-of-speech-case-have-an-effect-globally-1.2056780
http://www.irishtimes.com/life-and-style/health-family/that-s-men-revenge-porn-could-be-classified-in-law-as-form-of-cyberbullying-1.2007043 on revenge porn
http://www.thejournal.ie/cyberbullying-legislation-crime-1787643-Nov2014/

Monday, 2 March 2015

Chuck Feeney the Koch brother of Ireland: American Money in Irish Referendums

Churck Feeney made his money through setting up businesses based on avoiding tax, in particular in various duty free shops at airports.

Chuck Feeney may be called Irish because at least one grandparents was Irish but really he's American, American-Irish at most.
Born in New Jersey in 1931. A grandmother from Fermanagh, Chuck Feeney Has dual Irish and American citizenship.
Seems he got his Irish citizenship in 1989.

He had been granted Irish citizenship some fifteen years previously— he qualified by having one grandparent born in Ireland— and held dual Irish -U.S. nationality.
O'Clery, Conor (2013-08-27). The Billionaire Who Wasn't: How Chuck Feeney Secretly Made and Gave Away a Fortune (p. 276)

Celebrating Irishness Charles Feeney

Rich people being able to choose how to spend money to help others, can use that money to influence governments based on their interests, the problem with that is the rest of us don't get to individually pick and choose, we influence spending on public services as a collective by voting in members of parliament. One man with a million Euro gets far more access and influence then a 10,000 people with 100 Euro. Even though I generally agree with the progressive causes he spends his money on in Ireland, I'm still concerned that one man can have so much influence on the government and the country.

In 1964 a young New York lawyer, Harvey Dale, told Mr Feeney that changes in the tax laws threatened his business, which was running risks that could put the founders in jail. On his advice, Mr Feeney and his co-founder, Robert Miller, transferred ownership to their foreign-born wives, from France and Ecuador, respectively.

In 1982 he created a foundation, the Atlantic Philanthropies, based in Bermuda

“Saipan had no tourism and didn’t even have a hotel,” recalled Alan Parker. “Chuck came up with the idea that this has to be a good place for tourism , but all that existed from the war was this runway, old and long and overgrown. We went to the government authority and said, ‘We will finance the building of an airport, the redoing of the runway in return for a twenty-year concession on the duty free in Saipan.’” “Then we did the best tax deal in the world,” said Pilaro . “We made Saipan the biggest tax haven in the United States, waving the flag. We had legislation enacted that exempted Saipan-sourced income from being taxed. We built the whole thing. It was a gold mine. No tax.”

O'Clery, Conor (2013-08-27). The Billionaire Who Wasn't: How Chuck Feeney Secretly Made and Gave Away a Fortune (p. 84). PublicAffairs. Kindle Edition.

Chuck-Feeney the billionaire who is trying to go broke Although he had shifted his ownership to Atlantic via a complex Bahamas-based asset swap to minimize disclosure and taxes
He has aggressively tried to avoid taxes at every stage in his career–from setting up his early business in Lichtenstein, incorporating his holding company in Bermuda and listing it under the name of his then wife Danielle, a French citizen–despite gaining no personal advantage in his later years.
Atlantic Philanthropies
Atlantic Philanthropies set up in 1982 as Tara Consultants.
You can view Atlantic Philanthropies Irish grants here.

Since 1982, Mr. Feeney's organisation, Atlantic Philanthropies, has donated almost €800 million to Irish universities.
Grants totalling 52 million at 2012 Focusing on Eldery Care, Immgrants, college Research and facilities.

Secrecy



Although Atlantic Philanthropy now has a website listing all the grants since 2001, for a long time he was not public about his donations, some say modesty others may say secrecy.

Even his biography is called "The Billionaire Who Wasn't: How Chuck Feeney Made and Gave Away a Fortune Without Anyone Knowing" and RTE produced a documentary is called Secret Billionaire: The Chuck Feeney Story.

In 2003 matching grant of €75 million he gave secretly without anyone knowing about it.
The addendum turned out to be the authorization they were seeking. Seventy-five million pounds of taxpayers’ money would be put up to match the anonymous IR £ 75 million from Atlantic. Bertie Ahern would announce the IR £ 150-million fund the following Thursday and would describe Feeney’s half as private funding.
At a press conference the following Thursday in Dublin, Bertie Ahern announced a IR £ 150-million research program that would involve new laboratories , computer and study facilities, and research library development , to be called the Program for Research in Third Level Institutions (PRTLI). He made no mention of Atlantic, saying only that half would come from “matching private spending to be raised by the universities and institutes of technology.”
The Billionaire Who Wasn't: How Chuck Feeney Secretly Made and Gave Away a Fortune (p. 273) Conor O'Clery.

Astonishingly, the secretary general of the Department of Education and Science was not really aware of the role Feeney had played in funding Irish universities during the previous ten years. After the dinner he asked one of his top officials, Paddy McDonagh, to make some inquiries about Atlantic Philanthropies. McDonagh spoke to contacts in the Department of Foreign Affairs and reported back, “It’s highly secretive, and if you make any approach to them at all, that’s it, all communications are finished, are dead.” It was a measure of the effectiveness of Harvey Dale’s strictures that the education department was in the dark. It was, moreover, not in the interest of university presidents to let the world know anything about their friend Chuck, as they feared it could mean less funding from the Higher Education Authority. New libraries, science buildings, and student villages were going up on every campus, no one in the education department had connected the dots.

Thornhill (head of the Department of Education and Science) never kept notes of these meetings , nor did he make entries in his desk diary, as he might be forced one day to make them public under the Freedom of Information Act.

“This was real cloak-and -dagger stuff,” recalled Thornhill. “We were so concerned about secrecy that we wouldn’t even use the telephone .” When they wanted to talk about Chuck and Atlantic among themselves, they didn’t dare say the names aloud. They referred to “our friends,” or “our mutual friends .”
What would happen if someone asked the prime minister or minister for education a question about the anonymous donor?

O'Clery, Conor (2013-08-27). The Billionaire Who Wasn't: How Chuck Feeney Secretly Made and Gave Away a Fortune (pp. 269-273). PublicAffairs. Kindle Edition.

Bill Gates
He is said to have influenced Bill Gates and others into 'giving while living'. Bill Gates monopoly in bundling its web browser with OS and paying it manufacturing partners not to use any other OS United_States v. Microsoft_Corp, would it not have been better not to acted in monopolistic ways, maybe other companies could have succeeded and spread the jobs, and tax revenue.

The Kock Brothers
The Koch brothers are two sons of an Oil refiner Fred C. Koch that started Koch Industries, the second-largest privately held company in the United States, they spend are large amounts known and unknown money on right wing causes to undermine the state. The Kock brothers have been accused of using labyrinthine ways to funnel money into many different organisations to promote their views.

Foreign Funding

The Marriage Equality Referendum
The Yes Equality Campaign, which for the moment has been focussing on getting people registered to vote, is fnded by Gay + Lesbian Equality Network (GLEN) funded partly by Atlantic Philanthropies and Marriage Equality who are funded partly by Atlantic Philanthropies and Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL), they and the Irish Civil Liberties Trust are funding by private donations, including Atlantic Philanthopies.

Marriage Equality Campaign funding

Grantee
GrantYearGrant amount
Marriage Equality LtdCampaign for Marriage Equality2010-2011$ 475,215
National Lesbian & Gay Federation (NLGF)MarriagEquality/GCN2002-2008$ 1,370,162
The Irish Council for Civil LibertiesCore Support for ICCL2004 - 2013$11,367,148
Gay and Lesbian Equality NetworkCore Support2005-2011$ 4,727,860

Not all this money was spent on Marriage Equality some was spent on general support for LGBT and capacity building for the entire organisation which obviously helps in campaigning on Marriage equality.

Will Ireland vote for gay marriage? Historic vote coming upNiall O'Dowd - Irish Central October 01 2014

Our belief is that there will be major U.S. money involved,” says Brady, a former elected councillor in Donegal who now runs GLEN’s policy side full time. “This is a critical vote for them.”

GLEN was funded by Chuck Feeney’s Atlantic Philanthropies back when gay issues were completely under the radar in Ireland. The Irish American billionaire who gave all his money away saw the group as standing up for human rights, an issue dear to his own heart whether it was Northern Ireland Nationalists or LGBT men and women.

Brady pays a fulsome tribute to the anonymous Feeney. “He made it possible for us to exist and create the network,” he says.

Constitutional Assembly
Chuck Feeney charity funds citizens assembly idea

Atlantic Philanthropy says it does not take unsolicited applicants for grants but it did in this case,

Political scientists connected to the project approached Atlantic Philanthropies a year ago requesting funding to organise a citizens’ assembly focused on political reform, Mr Mac Conghail said at the launch of the initiative in Dublin yesterday.
Atlantic Philantrophies gave €630k to a group of academics to run a examplar citizen assembly with meetings and website at wethecitizen.ie in order to encourage the government to set up its own, which a number of parties had a constituional assembly in their election manifestos and the government implemented it after the next election.

We The Citizens: Final Report

Convention on the Constitution. Irish Government Convention started in 2012.

Abortion
National Women's Council of Ireland NWCI which was funded for Promotion of Gender Equality. NWCI supports reduced restrictions on abortion This is a clear acknowledgement in our laws that access to abortion can be necessary in order to save women’s lives

Pro-life sites say that the Report included a pro-abortion statement and the several NGO's that had been been involved withdrew their endorsement.

Rightsnow.ie organised by the ICCL
Your Rights - Right Now Report (pdf)

UN UPR Shadow Report
http://www.opinionviewer.com/petition/not-our-name-withdraw-support-pro-abortion-document

The Irish Council for Civil Liberties Strengthening Human Rights for the Disadvantaged

Controversy relating to pro-abortion UPR report deepens

Not in Our Name - Withdraw Support for Pro-Abortion Document

Universitys
1990: Atlantic makes its first grant to University of Limerick to construct advanced research, conference and cultural facilities. Lifetime grants: $170 million.

Childrens Rights

Children's Rights Alliance is an association of 100 others NGO's campaign for improvement in child conditions, which over the last years campaigned for a campaigned for a referendum 'on the right and duty of the state to take child protection measures', based on the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child which occued in November 2012 Thirty-first Amendment of the Constitution (Children) Bill 2012.

The Children's Rights Alliance received over 4 million dollars over ten years from Atlantic Philanthropies.

UL
Chuck Feeney's 200m generosity to University of Limerick

Links
A Billion Still to Spend, and Only Two Years to Do It

http://www.economist.com/node/9903943
http://web.archive.org/web/20130912101039/http://www.commondreams.org/views06/0823-26.htm
http://www.finfacts.ie/irishfinancenews/article_1026589.shtml
http://newint.org/features/2012/04/01/bill-gates-charitable-giving-ethics/
http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-17664893
http://www.villagemagazine.ie/index.php/2014/03/corrupting-philanthropy/
www.ictr.ie

“Americans for a New Ireland Agenda”


Constitutional Assembly in Manifestos

Fine Gael Manifesto 2011 (page 7)
We will establish a Citizens Assembly, along the lines of those used in the Netherlands, to make recommendations on electoral reform.

LAbour Party Manifesto 2011 (Page 41)It
is time for a fundamental review of our Constitution, by the people to whom it belongs. Labour proposes a Constitutional Convention, a coming together of all strands of Irish society to rewrite our Constitution.

Green Party Manifesto 2011 (page 13)
Within six months of entering Government, hold a referendum on establishing a Citizens Assembly, which would be tasked with drawing up a new draft constitution within 18 months.

Fianna Fail Manifesto 2011 page 35
We support the principle of a Citizen’s assembly. This would bring together a group of citizens to debate and
recommend specific proposals.

Sinn Fein Manifesto 2011
A new Constitution. Establishing an all-Ireland Constitutional Forum drawn from representatives of both legislatures on this island, civic society, business
and trade unions to discuss and bring forward a Draft Constitution that would be put to the people in a referendum.

http://oireachtasdebates.oireachtas.ie/debates%20authoring/DebatesWebPack.nsf/takes/dail2007110100009?opendocument&highlight=chuck%20feeney

I will be voting Yes in the Referendum