01 January 2008

Privacy and the Market State

The argument that "economic freedom leads to greater democracy" seems to be contradicted by an overall worsening of privacy protection across the world. The US, home of the "Index of Economic Freedom" is itself blacklisted by Privacy International.

It borders on the ridiculous when one of the architects of South American death squads together with a newspaper owned by media monopolist and warpropagandist Rupert Murdoch rates "freedom" in the world from the worst ranking country in the democratic world when it comes to endemic surveillance.

Economic Freedom

Asia again topped a survey which ranks the world's freest economies in 2007, with Hong Kong in first place and Singapore in second position. Australia clinched the third spot in the latest Index of Economic Freedom survey for 2007 conducted by the Wall Street Journal and The Heritage Foundation.
Top 10 Countries
1. Hong Kong
2. Singapore
3. Australia
4. United States
5. New Zealand
6. United Kingdom

Privacy and Surveillance
Privacy International (PI) is a human rights group formed in 1990 as "a watchdog on surveillance and privacy invasions by governments and corporations." It has been doing its global survey on the rankings of privacy protection around the world since 1997.
The 2007 rankings indicate an overall worsening of privacy protection across the world, reflecting an increase in surveillance and a declining performance of privacy safeguard

The lowest ranking countries in the survey continue to be Malaysia, Russia and China.
In terms of statutory protections and privacy enforcement, the US is the worst ranking country in the democratic world. In terms of overall privacy protection the United States has performed very poorly, being out-ranked by both India and the Philippines and falling into the "black" category, denoting endemic surveillance.

The worst ranking EU country is the United Kingdom, which again fell into the "black" category along with Russia and Singapore.

Blacklisted Countries:
China 1.3
Malaysia 1.3
Russia 1.3
Singapore 1.4
United Kingdom 1.4
United States 1.5
Thailand 1.5
Taiwan 1.5

The Financial Paradoxes of Globalization

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