I was going to tell you about our work today, which mostly involved fencing our new garden on the terrace by the walnut trees. But I decided that was too boring.
So I’ll tell you about the latest government wheeze. This time, it’s the Spanish government, but don’t be fooled, they’re all the same. They all want all the data they can possibly gather about you, they want to keep it forever, and they want to use it however they please.
In this instance, it involves the issue of pay-as-you-go SIM cards. In the ‘old days’ (well, a few years ago, anyway) you could buy a SIM, pay your money, then top up the credit as needed. You stayed anonymous.
You can see how this would really bother governments. In the UK, they even want GPS chips added to all cell phones eventually, so that they can pinpoint any person anytime they want. Great.
Here in Spain, the powers that be don’t like anonymity either. So they have changed the law, and it’s retrospective. You can keep your pay-as-you-go SIM, but you have to go in and register your details by the 7th of November, or it will be turned off. No option, in other words.
To register, you have to show your passport or ID card, a signed letter from the bank showing your account number, and give your address. It caused some consternation when we said we had no real address, so we finally just said our address was “los Porqueros” (which is actually the name of this part of the mountain).
We hate this. Spain says this measure is to “combat terrorism” (the catch-all justification), but who are they kidding? As with all such punitive laws (see also “Patriot Act”), these laws and the collection of data ad infinitum does not stop terrorists or criminals. Those people have the ways and means to get around any law or restriction. So the law punishes the ordinary guy on the street.
Our leaders tell us not to worry, because
if you’ve done nothing wrong, you’ve nothing to fear