I don't even know where to begin.
Amber Rudd, our garbage home secretary who has a long-standing feud with WhatsApp and other encrypted messaging services, has admitted that she doesn't actually understand how the technology works. But that isn't stopping her from wanting to ban it or change the way it works.
Here's an exact quote from her speech at the Conservative party conference:
"I don't need to understand how encryption works to understand how it's helping – end-to-end encryption – the criminals. I will engage with the security services to find the best way to combat that".
These words come despite the fact that banning encryption wouldn't do much good, and even the former head of MI5 thinks weakening encryption is a bad idea. But for the sake of fairness, he does think that the increase in encrypted messaging has affected police investigations to some extent.
She also added that there is too much criticism of people who are trying to craft legislation for these "new areas":
"It's so easy to be patronised in this business. We will do our best to understand it. We will take advice from other people but I do feel that there is a sea of criticism for any of us who try and legislate in new areas, who will automatically be sneered at and laughed at for not getting it right."
Hey, Amber, here's a thought. Why don't you try to understand it before you open your mouth and vomit up a mass of nonsense sentences? There will be fewer people "sneering" and "laughing" at you if you actually bother to do the most basic of research, instead of doing this whenever someone tells you something you don't want to hear:
But sadly I don't hold out much hope for Amber Rudd suddenly announcing that she got it wrong. Politicians are nothing if not stubborn, and admitting how ignorant she's been would tarnish her image and probably be the end of her cabinet career. She is, after all, the person who wrote a big long piece in The Telegraph about why "real people" don't care about encryption. Which just flat out isn't true.
But what else is new. Politicians are shocking ill-informed when it comes to tech. Who can forget the time the Australian PM said the laws of mathematics had to be subservient to the laws of Australia? At least we can be safe in the knowledge that the EU has our back.
Oh, right. Awkward. [The Independent]