Finnish Government and the Desire to Constitutionalize Mass Surveillance: Toward Permanent State of Emergency?

The Finnish Government intends to amend the constitution to clear the path for a NSA-type surveillance scheme. The form of constitutionalism that results from this kind of change would reverse the traditional grounds of legitimacy as set forth by the constitutions and human rights treaties: instead of providing one possible but narrowly interpreted ground for restricting right to confidential communications and protection of personal data, national security would occupy the position of a main rule while the constitutional right would wither away to a narrowly applied exception. In essence, the amendment would securitize one of the key fundamental rights of our time, and create a permanent state of emergency within it.

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