Monday, 30 November 2009
I come to think about how we can possibly extricate ourselves from the mess we're currently in.
The changes that the Cap'n outlines will not happen overnight, just as with everything we've seen since the Cold War, it will be a drip, drip effect. The end of the Cold War was a bloody big surprise to everyone on both sides of the wall, no-one really saw it coming. Solidarity, Glasnost etc, etc, it was all supposed to be an evolution, not a revolution. A closely controlled PR exercise, the sort of model the Chinese have followed in their reforms. Giving a little ground, a few minor idealogical alterations but making sure that the powers that be are firmly in the driving seat.
The EU will not want scenes that we saw 20 years ago in Berlin and certainly won't want scenes that we saw in Bucharest when the crowd turned. It will be on the statute and will lie dormant, the first few uses will be for minor infractions, the third or fourth charge on the sheet, precedent slipped in under the radar. Our murderers will use stealth and patience, not shock and awe.
It is easy to throw about phrases about the removal of trial by jury, habeas corpus and so forth. But when you stop to consider the cold, hard facts it is chilling in the extreme and it installs in me a sense of despair that this can and will be done to us.
I like bloggers like Constantly Furious, like Old Holborn and Devils Kitchen, their rage is an energy, but I wonder about the focus. I know OH has had issues with UKLP that have resulted in his departure from the party, but I find myself asking what these minority parties are for.
By minority parties, I don't just mean us in UKLP and the English Democrats, but also people like UKIP. UKIP may be knocking on the front door, but they certainly aren't in the hallway yet.
I support LPUK because I feel their policies are the closest to my own personal feelings, but what do I and the party want to achieve? At present we are an irrelevance, not even an annoyance. We are more akin to a pressure group than anything else. That doesn't mean I don't think we can't grow, or that we can't contribute something worthwhile, but that will take time.
Time is a luxury we do not have. I and many others have woken up to the situation far too late. Many continue to slumber and will not wake up until the knock at the door comes in the small hours one morning because of a joke they made at work, or something their child said at school.
We are blindsided with talk of climate change, terrorism, financial meltdown, a nuclear Iran and a myriad of other issues, real in degree and/or of no importance whatsoever. The real threat lies in Brussels in a flag with a blue background and a few golden stars.
This is not just a threat to the UK, but to every nation in Europe, whether members or not. I feel as anxious for the French, Italians, Slovenes, Hungarians and Maltese as I do for us in the UK. I am getting very, very scared.
So, what's the big idea? How do we get out of it?
I think the UK is a very important part of the EU. Not just financially, but we are a litmus. Along with the Danes we are probably the most EUrosceptic nation in the Federation, if it can be got past us, it can be got past anyone.
It doesn't help though, when our politicians stick 'it' up their jumpers and sneak it past us like a 15 year old with some vodka at a school disco. We have to stop this, and we have to get out.
Here's the idea. We may need to work and come to an understanding with people we don't like very much.
LPUK aren't going to do it by themselves.
The English Democrats won't manage it.
Jury Team can't do it.
Scargill's Socialist Labour Party won't win.
The BNP, yes, the BNP, will never get the job done.
UKIP cannot get the seats they need to force the issue.
There are some very different parties there, most with mutually exclusive policies. However there is a common thread running through all these parties. One single policy on which they can all agree - complete withdrawal from the EU.
It's a mad, mad idea. What if, what if these parties named, and others who want to withdraw from the EU, make a statement to the effect that no matter how different their other policies, they all recognise that the EU presents the most serious threat to our way of life, above and beyond any other issue, and that they will unite on a single platform to get power, hold a referendum - and when it is won and we get out - will then call an immediate general election with all the hating, backbiting, sniping and revulsion that we all love so much back on the agenda.
Controversial? Certainly. Unworkable? Probably. But we have to do something. We can't carry on like this, or we'll all be done for.
Well why not? I have no vested interest in the Union. I'd like to think it would save me money if it were broken up, but I know full well that any actual financial savings made by England in the event of Scotland's departure from the Union would be soaked up by some other scheme. Nevertheless, if the majority of the people of Scotland want to split from England then that is only right.
The thing is, I'm not entirely sure that a majority of Scots (or perhaps more importantly, Scottish resident Brits) do want the Union to split. I think the oily fish is on a hiding to nothing. Sat in Edinburgh at the head of a minority government, an expensive and divisive referendum would cause terminal damage to his administration if it were returned with a no vote.
I'm not surprised that the Tories are against it, nor the Lib Dems, but I am surprised that the Scottish Labour party aren't, if not supporting it, certainly making noises that this question needs sorting out. In the likely event of a no vote, I think Labour would find their position in Scotland strengthened considerably.
That is unless of course, as some armchair constitutional lawyers have suggested on the radio this morning, that in order for it to be a democratically and constitutionally satisfactory referendum, everyone in the Union would have to have their say. If that were the case then I really don't know what the outcome would be. I think just as many English would vote in favour of kicking out the Scots as would vote in favour of locking them in. Many would vote one way or the other to piss the Scots off and many would do the same out of a genuine desire to see Scotland get the best. It would be a bloody mess.
The question that the SNP conveniently evades is independence from what?
On the face of it, the answer is an obvious one. England. But of course, it isn't real independence. The bloody great white elephant is still in the room. That being the EU. There is no independence from England, England is not in the driving seat. If Scotland wants true national independence, they need to have two questions on the referendum, one asking if a split from England is desirable and a second asking in the event of a yes vote in question one, do you want to remain in the EU.
This is an EU that has railroaded the Lisbon Treaty through. A treaty that was ushered in with nary a murmur from the Westminster parliament and one that Alex Salmond would have quite cheerfully signed if he were Prime Minister of an 'independent' Scotland.
Captain Ranty has a superb outline of a few of the rights that disappear from existence at midnight tomorrow night, including the removal of habeas corpus, trial by jury, the supposition of innocence over guilt and democracy. Just criticising the EU will become a criminal offence at midnight.
If Scotland wants independence, true independence, I'll back them to the hilt. If they get it, I'll be looking at the property pages in Stirling and Perth with great interest.
Saturday, 28 November 2009
Simple. I don't doubt that most have you will seen the laughable identikit picture of Bolivia's public enemy number one.
Here it is:
It really is almost impossible to link this frankly childish sketch to any real person, however, using my superior intelligence and detective skills which would have Holmes going green with envy, I can now reveal the true identity of this master Bolivian criminal:
I will be carried shoulder high around the great cities of London and La Paz.
I'm not sure if there is a reward, but I will warn the more avaricious of you not to bother, I've already called the Bolivian embassy in London and told them.
Thursday, 26 November 2009
Fair play to the MSPs who seem to have cracked this issue and look like adopting a policy which will hopefully see voters aged 18 to 20 turn out in record numbers north of the border:
Controversial legislation to bring in minimum-pricing for alcohol in Scotland will be defeated by opposition parties.Yep, that'll get them turning out in pretty short order, the thing is they won't vote for you. They'll be voting for the other guys. What was the percentage of the electorate who voted Labour in Glasgow NE? 17% or something like that? I wonder what percentage of the electorate in the average constituency is between 18 to 20 years old?
The SNP government said its legislation to take it forward would tackle drink-fuelled violence and health problems. But Labour, the Tories and the Lib Dems raised concern the measure, contained in the Alcohol Bill, was illegal under European competition law.
The bill also included proposals to ban drink promotions, powers for licensing boards to raise age for buying drink from 18 to 21 and a "social responsibility fee" for retailers who sell alcohol.
Still it's not all bad news, the social responsibility fee sounds like common sense, after all they charge car manufacturers the same to deal with the fall out from road crashes, don't they? No? Oh, perhaps this is the shape of things to come then. It's still a good idea, as it will help bankroll the benefits of all those people who currently work in the production, packaging, distribution and retail of alcohol north of the border who will probably lose their jobs fairly soon as a result.
And what about those little tykes who live close to the border with the Auld Enemy? They'll just get in their cars and head south to do the booze shopping. Is this just a sneaky plan to usher in the EU regionalist model? Will there be police and customs officers manning a control at every point of entry between England and Scotland looking for contraband grog?
There's an Eliot Loch-Ness gag there, but I won't insult your intelligence.
I fear I may have done Mr. Brazier and the Conservative party an injustice. Now that doesn’t mean that the Tories are a shining beacon of civil liberties whom angels shall surely sing to their final rest, it is just that Labour are so, so, so wrong and so, so, so repulsive that the Tory position is as preferable as a nice cup of tea and a biscuit is to having one’s internal organs removed by a narcoleptic orang-utan with use of a plastic spoon whilst he plays the hits of Phil Collins on the kazoo.
What could possibly have made me reveal this train of thought?
A sortie over the blogosphere this evening has drawn two items to my attention.
Firstly Julia M/Ambush Predator writes a thorough fisking of some of the worst, most objectionable, 14 pints of Stella induced cloudy piss ridden. . . well. . . tosh from the Postman who somehow now holds one of the highest offices in the land. I won’t post any excerpts here as I’ll only go and post the whole bloody thing, do go and read it if you have a minute or two to spare.
The second item, slipped most unobtrusively into a post written by Mr. Civil Libertarian (he who was until recently ‘Their contempt for you is total'), is a heads up about a posting over at Labour List (God help us). Kudos to Mr C.L., I can’t stomach Labour List, after a few minutes I realise that a mixture of salt and plutonium dust poured into my eyes would be less irritating. Anyhow it’s from some arseclown called Matthew Zarb-Cousin and it contains the following passage:
“Do you want to live in a society where everyone is considered a potential criminal?”, asked Will Self on Question Time last Thursday. The reality, and I hate to break it to you, Will, is that everyone is a potential criminal.
Ladies and Germs, I give you the Labour party. The only thing which is missing from the article is the patronising little chuckle and knowing look as they point out that when they say everyone, that doesn’t include MPs, peers and any Labour Party officials. They would never commit a crime such as a traffic offence, or fraud, for example.
Tuesday, 24 November 2009
Fun isn't allowed. Fun kills people, ruins lives and is discriminatory.
Besides, those in the know will tell you that true fun only comes from pitching your tent as a spectator at the disabled amputee lesbian ethnic minority carbon neutral everyone-a-winner organic hopping championships sponsored by Vegan Emma's Fairtrade Lentils.*
You can only have fun at events like that, but mind you go easy on the elderflower cordial, any other fun is baaaaaaaad.
Especially fun in video games:
*deepest sigh that it is possible to imagine*
Human rights groups played various games to see if any broke humanitarian laws that govern what is a war crime.
The study condemned the games for violating laws by letting players kill civilians, torture captives and wantonly destroy homes and buildings.
It said game makers should work harder to remind players about the real world limits on their actions.
You do understand these games aren't real, don't you?
I'm not a lover of this genre, not on any philiosophical level, they just don't do it for me. It's a shame that this logic doesn't extend to other games because I love sports games. If the logic did hold, I'd be a roaming attacking midfielder for Barcelona or an explosive running back for the New York Jets such would their influence be on me.
Hang on . . .
kill civilians, torture captives and wantonly destroy homes and buildings.
When is any gamer going to be able to do that?
Here's a message for the people peddling this complete arse-gravy:
There's a door over there. Open it, go on, no drop into the darkness, no wild animal or elaborate booby trap, it's just a door. Opened it? Good. Now step through and close it behind you. Can you still hear me? Excellent, now walk away and keep walking until you have put a distance between us such that a reasonable person can be satisfied that you have fucked off and left me alone.
It's an illusion. No, not the game, that's a simulation. The illusion is that you think these games are going to lead to people committing war crimes. I understand why, you seem to think that people are influenced by anything you have to say, thus you think people are influenced by these games. You are wrong on both scores.
No-one gives a flying fuck what you say, everyone understands that these games aren't real.
I do hope that is clear enough for you.
*Sponsorship in form of donation to Endangered Polar Bear Battered Wives Association - Reg'd charity number 237627849889326
Monday, 23 November 2009
Here is that reply in full;
Thank you for your email of 11th November about the retention of the DNA of innocent people. I share your concerns on this issue and agree with much of what you say. I acknowledge that DNA evidence can play a vital role in modern criminal investigations, but the current system is in urgent need of reform.
My colleagues and I are very concerned about the growth of the DNA Database. There are now 5.9 million DNA profiles on the National Database, making it the largest in the world. The Government has previously admitted that around one million profiles were those of innocent people who had not been not convicted (sic), cautioned, formally warned or reprimanded.
In December 2008, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that two British men should not have had their DNA retained by police, as neither was convicted of any offence. The principle upheld by the judgement - that innocent people should not be on the DNA database indefinitely - should have been respected, yet the Government continues to merely adjust the length of time that DNA can be retained.
The Home Secretary recently announced plans to retain the DNA profiles of 16 or 17-year-olds arrested for a serious, violent or sexual crime for six years, even if they are not convicted. In addition to this, the DNA of adults who are not convicted would be retained for six years. When this legislation comes before the Houses of Parliament, my Party will argue that the Government has completely missed the point. People in Britain are innocent until proven guilty and the retention of DNA should reflect this fundamental principle.
Conservatives (sic) plans to adopt a system similar used to that in Scotland, where the DNA profiles of those not convicted of an offence would only be retained in circumstances where the charges related to a crime of violence or a sexual offence. In these circumstances, DNA profiles could be retained for a maximum period of five years, subject to a judicial oversight. This system meets the requirements of the European Court of Human Rights, has proved more effective than the larger database in England and Wales, and will restore the fundamental rights of the individuals.
I hope this is helpful.
(Illegible Scrawl) - Julian Brazier, T.D., M.P.
Most of the letter seems to be a template which is no doubt trotted out to anyone who writes on this subject, and predictably it trots out the same stats that I used or were very well aware of.
The rest of it? Well, it is re-assuring to see that on the face of it, the Tories are a little less obsessed with harvesting our data, but looking further there isn't a great deal of difference.
'DNA profiles of those not convicted of an offence would only be retained in circumstances where the charges related to a crime of violence or a sexual offence.'
So even if you bop someone on the nose in a pub scrap you'd be retained or if you were the subject of a proven unfounded rape/sexual assault/sexual harrassment claim, you'd be retained, unless a judge or magistrate had the foresight to demand your material's removal from the database. Supposing you don't get as far as court? What if the CPS refuse charge or the police decide you didn't do it? What then? Will they remove it as a matter of course? The implication is still that if you are accused, you are guilty of something.
An improvement, even if a slight one.
It's justice, Jim, but not as we know it.
Friday, 20 November 2009
From Obo comes this selection of documents leaked from the IPCC, which could be HUGE, if they are what they appear to be. I know Obnoxio has asked for it to be 're-tweeted'.
Could it be we're being lied to? Surely not. . .
Thursday, 19 November 2009
Six MPs and peers may soon face criminal charges of fraud following investigations by Scotland Yard into the abuse of the Parliamentary expenses system.
The Daily Telegraph understands that detectives will imminently pass files on Labour MPs Elliot Morley, David Chaytor and Jim Devine, and peers Baroness Uddin, Lord Hanningfield and Lord Clarke of Hampstead to the Crown Prosecution Service.
Ho ho ho, I think I may even order up a platter of nachos covered with that cheese. Y'know, the stuff that is that yellowy orange colour you don't find in nature.
Keir Starmer, the country’s top prosecutor, is expected to make a decision on whether to prosecute the politicians as early as January, before a General Election.
And listen to the high pitched whine if any prosecution does come before the GE. Wait for the explanation about how it would interfere with the big three's divine right to be elected. Justice must play second fiddle to these arseholes and their desires to rule over us. The other argument will be about how the cost of these trials dwarves the amount of money trousered, and that it was a mistake. It being a mistake is a defence that has to be accepted. But only if you are an MP or a Peer of the Realm, if you're a little person, you're going down.
That's not all justice has to play second fiddle to. . .
The most serious suspected frauds are considered to be those of Mr Morley and Mr Chaytor who both claimed thousands of pounds for “phantom” mortgages that they had already paid off. . .
. . . Mr Morley said: “I have always made it clear that I am not guilty of any offence and that I am very happy to co-operate with the police, and the parliamentary authorities and procedures. I have been advised not to comment on press reports particularly when they are based more on speculation than fact.”
Yep, that's Labour all over. 'I have declared I am not guilty, therefore it is so.' Sorry fatboy, if we get our day in court, that'll be for the jury to decide, and given the rep of MPs in general and you in particular, I don't fancy your chances old chap. Just think about all that DNA on registers, all those CRB checks for you to get a job once you get out.
In May, HMRC wrote to all MPs asking if they wished to come forward and make voluntary payments.
I'm betting I know how many decided they did want to make voluntary payments. Somewhere between sod all and naff all.
The authorities said last night they had opened formal inquiries into 27 MPs.
Looks like the CPS and the revenue men could be giving us all a belated Xmas present. You see, that's the thing, all those civil servants and police officers who have had their jobs made more difficult by your constant tinkering, who have seen budgets for proper work cut whilst more and more social cohesion diversity outreach citizen focus equality officers have been put on the strength, they are all little people too, they hate you as well and now they have an opportunity to kick you where it hurts.
Payback's a bitch.
Tuesday, 17 November 2009
Monday, 16 November 2009
(Click on the image to see the letters in full)
Right, let's get something straight what was done to these kids was unspeakable, they were treated in the most apalling fashion. That being said, and without wanting to sound glib, I should imagine the offspring of these people are quite happy to be in Canada, Australia or NZ.
It is a belief of mine that you can and should only apologise for something if you are the one responsible for what happened and you feel genuine sorrow for the results of your actions.
I'll give Gordon the benefit of the doubt and will accept that he understands what a hurtful course of action sending these kids away was and I would hope that nothing like this would happen again. It seems the Aussies are going to say sorry too, they've got form in this area anyway, with the social engineering of the 'lost generation'* another staggeringly insensitive practive that shows just how cruel and spiteful the Nanny State is.
However, Gordon cannot apologise for this. It is a simple fact that he was nothing to do with it. It is not his sin to atone for.
I don't mean this in a way to do these people down, and I really do feel for them, but it just isn't Gordon's fault. He, like me, can express deep regret at what happened, but he cannot apologise any more than Angela Merkel can apologise for the Holocaust, or Sarko can apologise for Napoleon's actions, or Berlusconi can apologise for the Roman usurpation of the Iceni lands from Boudica.
He'll be all too quick to fall to his knees declaring 'mea culpa!' He'll then find someone responsible and sack them. Wildly ironic, given the fact that there is so much which is his fault that he steadfastly refuses to apologise for.
*If you don't know about the Lost Generation, or even if you do, please read the linked account from the NSW Parliament. It is a most chilling testimony to what happens when people who think they know best get carte-blanche to waltz in and take over peoples' lives and dictate to them. Leg-Iron talks about this today and history is repeating itself here now. To misquote; 'We are all Aboriginals now'. The only outcome when The State inveigles itself into personal life is despair, hurt and destroyed lives. The State is incapable of love, that is an act which can only exist between two individuals.
Sunday, 15 November 2009
Dimbleby being run over by a cow and missing QT.
Brucie contracting 'flu and missing Strictly.
Is this some plan by the board to save money by ensuring the BBC's biggest earners meet with 'accidents'?
Perhaps the release of those expenses only tell part of the story.
Saturday, 14 November 2009
Former cabinet minister Stephen Byers has announced he will quit Parliament at the next general election.Good.
In that case, I will expand on my response.
He claimed £125,000 in second home expenses over five years for a flat owned entirely by his partner, according to details of MPs' allowances published by parliament.
He also claimed more than £27,000 on renovation, redecoration, maintenance and appliances at his flat in Camden, north London.
Good riddance you troughing fucker, I hope you find you are as unemployable as you deserve to be one you leave that sixth form common room.
Thursday, 12 November 2009
Leave a confession in the comments.
You're guilty of something. You must be. We all are.
There's so much to be guilty of.
Did you know that your local council can and will fine you for feeding the ducks?
A mother out feeding the ducks with her young son was given an on-the-spot fine by a park warden.Well, they can. Not exactly feeding the ducks, but for littering. The fact that the ducks eat your 'litter' before it hits the ground is neither here nor there.
Vanessa Kelly was in Smethwick Hall Park, in Smethwick, West Midlands, when she was approached by the warden and given a £75 fine for littering.
Now, here's a telling line.
The warden then told Ms Kelly her son could continue to feed the ducks as he was too young to be fined.
So, it's only an offence if you're old enough to have money taken off you. Once you have cash, then you're fair game. You can afford to give bread to waterfowl, madam? Well we'll have to take some of your cash in that case.
Give me strength.
Sandwell Council defended the fine, saying Ms Kelly was not in a designated feeding area.
A what? A designated feeding area?
So not only did she litter, she didn't seek permission from her all powerful, wise and mighty local authority. How dare she? Who the hell does she think she is? You can't just go and feed ducks, not without consent (the ducks can't give consent), suppose she fed them something unsuitable? Suppose these ducks have a wheat intolerance? They'd spend the rest of the day being all grumpy. She should be arrested for animal cruelty. She must have been near water, (that much is certain, she wasn't in a designated feeding area, this is a council, by the way, so there's no way that a 'designated feeding area' is going to be anywhere near a pond, canal or river) and put her child in mortal danger. The council should take her child off her, for its own good.
Right let's see which self-important, righteous complete pissing fuck-nugget is stupid enough to demonstrate what a thoughtless, socially-retarded cuntwaft he is by defending this.
Councillor Mahboob Hussain, the council's member for neighbourhoods and housing. . .
Hello Councillor Manboobs! You sir are a self-important, righteous, pissing fuck-nugget and a thoughtless, socially-retarded cuntwaft.
. . . said there had been so many complaints about the feeding of pigeons and waterfowl, a designated area had been created for feeding them.
He added the council had done a lot of work to warn people the designated space should be used.
And these people don't work for free, and God knows we've got to get the money from somewhere, so this bint will do. My expense money doesn't grow on trees, you know.
Actually, I made that last bit up.
"This park has a major problem with Canada geese and people living nearby have made complaints about them," he said.
"They feel intimidated by the large numbers of geese.
It's winter. Geese come to the UK in winter. Whilst it is cold in the winter in the UK, it isn't as cold as it gets in the arctic circle in winter, which is where these birds live in the summer. They've migrated here since before Smethwick existed, I don't think some woman and her toddler are a big pull factor here.
"We are taking this problem seriously and we are acting upon these complaints."
A damn site more seriously than I can take you, Manboobs, that's for sure.
The penalty notice would be reduced to £50 if paid within 10 days, he added.
Oh well that's fine then. They take an eminently sensible law about littering, completely skew the spirit of that law, and then empower an unaccountable pseudo-plod to take £75 off someone for no reason than he can. But it's OK, cause they'll knock £25 off if you pay up like a good little prole.
Ms Kelly has not yet paid the fine and said she planned to contest it
Good for her. Although going to the press probably wasn't the best idea. My tack would be 'prove it'. Even if they've got it on CCTV, councils are notorious for not abiding by rules on disclosure, if that were the case, I'd be going for abuse of process and getting the judge to throw it out.
I know it is ACPO, so normality doesn’t really apply in their bizarre little world, but really, do police officers absolutely need a 93 page, two volume manual on how to ride a push-bike?
The TaxPayers’ Alliance call it:
an absurd waste of police time and thousands of pounds of taxpayers' money.
Which seems fair enough to me.
Has this come about because rank and file police officers are incapable of riding a bike? If so then I would submit that they’re probably not safe to be let out of the house, or is it that ACPO think that rank and file police officers are incapable of riding a bike without step-by-step, idiot proof instructions from them?
I reckon it is the latter, and unfortunately it explains a great deal about ACPO and our police service.
Wednesday, 11 November 2009
Commit a crime, you've got it coming.
Don't commit a crime, you should be free, free, free.
This is not freedom.
I will post the reply, if one is forthcoming.
Dear Venal Corrupt Trougher, (I didn't really put that, but was sorely tempted)
I am writing to voice my objection, in the strongest possible fashion, to the retention of the DNA sequences of the innocent on what I can only find referred to as 'the database'. (BBC (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/8353824.stm) and other major media outlets, today).
It is my belief that a person's DNA is their most private and personal data, and for the state to appropriate this material at their leisure fundamentally changes the relationship between citizen and state in a most disturbing and Orwellian way. I, and every other person resident in the UK, do not belong to the state. I am a private citizen, and my own personal bio-data belongs to me.
I am thankful that, as far as I am aware, my DNA sequence does not appear on 'the database', I have not been arrested and had my DNA taken from me. However I completely agree with the civil liberties campaigners who are so unhappy with the practice of retention.
I have always been of the impression that the police were an agency tasked with enforcing the law, however I become more and more wary as they embark on what amounts to lobbying and media spin. For them to say that 'retaining samples has helped solve crimes' seems a reasonable assertation on the face of it, but when one investigates the figures it becomes clear that a collection of almost 6,000,000 profiles has helped to solve 0.7% of crimes. Even when accounting for the hundreds of acts this government has declared criminal since taking power, one can only conclude that we are living in a society where crime is the norm, or that DNA retention is not as useful a tool as we are led to believe.
The argument is illogical. Where do we draw the line? It is all very well to talk in terms of rapists and murderers, but the Home Office and police seem to lose sight of the fact that these people have been arrested under suspicion of a crime, not convicted of its perpetration. The inference from the HO is that whilst it could not be proven that an individual committed an offence, they were arrested, so must have some degree of guilt - this goes against the practice of proof of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. If we take the argument that retention helps solve crimes, an argument built on weasel words if ever I heard one, then it would be logical to ensure everyone's DNA is taken from them at birth (this is not an argument I subscribe to). A step further? Those arrested and not charged or acquitted in court, being made to report to a police station on a weekly basis? Or being tagged?
Given this account from Cambridgeshire (Daily Mail (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1226688/Grandfather-arrested-dawn-held-police-cell-SIX-hours-using-single-swear-word-council-official.html) 11th November) is this man to have his DNA sequence retained, lest he be a rapist or murderer?
This practice reduces the private citizen to the status of a chattel. It is the 21st century equivalent to a Stasi file, an indication of the attitude that everyone is guilty of something and it is only a matter of time before it reveals itself. It is also only as good as the people who administer it, and whilst I would hesistate to accuse the police of tampering with evidence, poor lab practice or searching only for a DNA sample at a crime scene can and will lead to miscarriages of justice.
I find this practice to be repugnant and deeply, deeply sinister, and would hope in the likely event of a Conservative victory at the next general election, that a new Tory administration would ensure that the data of the innocent is destroyed as soon as that innocence cannot be dis-proved.
There. Yes, that's it.
That is the sound of 646 sphincters twitching, shifting uneasily in their seats as they realise that one of theirs has been sent down.
For two years.
After pleading guilty.
For the want of £39,000.
OH has put it best:
Fucking ACE, coppers. Now get down to the House of Commons, your work has just begun.
Should we be calling Crimestoppers?
Sunday, 8 November 2009
Friday, 6 November 2009
Calling NHS Direct proved fruitless. You see, when I called the surgery, they merely told me to call NHS Direct, the Doctors simply will not respond if one falls ill at the evenings or the weekend. After speaking to the young lady at NHS Direct, explaining the symptoms, she suggesting calling the Doctor. I told them I had tried, without success. I had best go to A&E then, was the advice.
Of course, the A&E department was closed three years ago, there is now just a minor injuries unit. The nearest A&E department is over twenty miles away. I'm not at all convinced the old man would survive the journey on the potholed road from here to there.
We'll have the dour man with the dark suit and the tape measure then.
Undertakers will always do housecalls. One of the conditions is that the object of their attentions is dead. To steal a phrase from Monty Python, 'he's not at all well.'
The Underaker is a busy man, but he acts with decorum and gravitas. 'What are the symptoms?' he asked, when I requested he wait for the death rattle.
My response was to tell him about the auto-immune condition, where the immune system, supposed to defend the body against harm, attacks perfectly healthy parts. Strange things, auto-immune conditions, always entertaining. The Undertaker was interested, and leaned forward in the chair he was sat on, outside the bedroom door, 'Oh yes, do tell.'
I explained how the defence system did its best to wound a part of the body that bore no threat to it whatsoever. It had done no wrong, yet is was punished all the same.
'Amazing' replied the Undertaker, 'is this common?' I explained that it was all too common, and whilst a small episode like this was not fatal, it was an indicator of bigger problems, a signpost which, if researched, could uncover things that the body was unaware of and were only seen if one looked very hard indeed.
The Undetaker later revealed to me, in a moment of explicit candour, that hs is no man of medicine, he informed me with a wave of the had and in a most self-depricating style, that he is more akin to a meat packer or a butcher. He knew, he said, which bit should go where, but had no understanding of the internal workings.
He pressed me on the bigger problems. I recounted how the first auto-immune condition was similar to the body having a slight falling out with itself, but the main, more hidden problem, was like all out war. The body was, in effect, using weapons of mass destruction on itself, in a catastrophic civil war.
The Undertaker gave a sigh. He told me how one of the certainties in his job was that he would make regular visits to the care homes in the area. It always seemed to him that either the body went, or the mind went. The nursing staff always seemed to display a sense of almost cruel relief when someone with a perfectly functioning mind, but trapped in a contrary body, departed. It was almost like a release from an inescapable prison.
I mused on the point, would it be better to have lost one's mind and be unaware of one's predicament, than to be imprisoned with no chance of parole? I came to the conclusion that it was.
However, the Undertaker was labouring under a mis-apprehension. Not only was the body at the end of a slow and attritional campaign of self-destruction, but it had also undergone this internal battle with a great and debilitating insanity.
Firstly, the ailing old man had descended into a psychopathic episode. Unaware to recognise the damage he had done to others, uncaring for those he had hurt; selfishness and disregard had become his mark.
A bi-polar condition had also taken hold. With the old man consistently acting against his own counsel, suffering delusional states of self-perception where one has acheived the impossible, arguing with his better nature, miserly one minute, surrendering his childrens' inheritance, gratis, the next.
The poor old man now lies in bed, coughing and spluttering, his compexion as grey as the weather outside his window. He decries his body as a traitor. He insulted the doctors who had tried to minister to his needs as charlatans and snake oil salesmen and has damned his descendents to penury.
Not many will mourn his passing. I think back to the Undertaker's account of the response of the nurses at the care home and think to myself, perhaps it is for the best.
The Undertaker sits in his wheel-back chair on the landing, the slow ticking of the clock marking the old man's last few moments. He has reached into the inside pocket of his frock coat and is reading a small volume he obviously carries for inescapable delays. This is a man used to waiting.
He waits tonight, and with the trace of a tear in the corner of his eye, he remembers what a grand, proud and respected man Mr. Britain used to be.
Thursday, 5 November 2009
I'll not do a complete re-hash, but I will say that I was surprised with the reception we got from the phalanx of armed forces vets in the Westminster Arms and around Parliament itself, good men and women who seemed genuinely interested in what we were doing, why were doing it and as far as I witnessed, wishing us all the best.
Some people get very snotty about 'The Walk', and I don't understand why. Is there a 'look at me!' aspect about it? Perhaps for some. Did we change anything? Not in the slightest. Did we make the 646 quake in their boots? No way.
When asked by a friend why I was doing this, my response was 'Well, if I don't, who will?' Did it matter if I did it? No.
The same friends also display a certain nervousness, the expectation that I will get into trouble. Well, why would I? There is no law in this country about wearing a mask, or walking down the street, or doing both simultaneously. As disturbed as I am about the way things are going in this country; things haven't got that bad yet. It is not an offence to go out sans ID, unlike some of our fellow EU members. Yet.
Doing what we did today, we were never going to get into any trouble. There isn't any there to be had. I'll let you into a little secret. What we did today was not daring in the slightest. It was not subversive, not radical, not anything.
From my perspective, OH's line about it only being a walk is not some mechanism to get around protest laws in Westminster, it is a clear statement of fact. The way some people react when I tell them about it, you'd think that we were running the risk of being cast into some Cat. A prison somewhere, never to be seen again.
The sad thing is, this says more about the public's perception of what is permissable, than it does about any laws Westminster and Brussels have passed. If they can suggest that doing this is likely to end badly, if they can insinuate that going for a walk and wearing a silly £5 plastic mask is some form of civil disobedience, then the gig is up. They don't need to pass any laws, they don't need to explain to the electorate why they've done it. We've done it for them.
It makes me very sad that people's automatic reaction to the act of wearing fancy dress, walking down one of the busiest streets, in one of the world's busiest cities, carrying nothing but a few quid in your pocket, could somehow result in 'trouble'. As a result, they don't do it.
I don't think they should do it, it's up to them. Most halfway sensible people wouldn't even consider it. But isn't it amazing that this equates to trouble? How conditioned we become to accepting authority over us, and fearful we are of questioning it.
So, that bring us back to the question put to me. Why did I do it?
Because I wanted to.
Because I could.
Because I was able to meet a group of likeminded people. Young and old, male and female. I was able to meet the two young Geordie girls who had spent what must have seemed like the last week on a bus down from Newcastle, just to do this. The residents of France and Switzerland, showing that whilst they may be ex-patria, they still think of home.
The main reason I did this was because it was fun.
Remember folks, the only real barriers in your way are the barriers you put in place yourself.
“We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to resign.” Details of Petition: “There are many reasons why we might want Brown to resign, but rather than having lots of narrow petitions on this topic (most of which have been rejected), I wanted one for all of us.”
That's the petition wording.
Here's the response:
The Prime Minister is completely focussed on restoring the economy, getting people back to work and improving standards in public services. As the Prime Minister has consistently said, he is determined to build a stronger, fairer, better Britain for all.
But we're broke because you've pissed all our money up the wall, Gordon.
There are no jobs Gordon, not real ones, there's no manufacturing. The EU has seen to that. Private business is mired in a morass of paperwork, red-tape and punitive taxes because you lot can't stand the idea of someone making money without your help.
The public servants are now starting to rise up, unable to do their jobs because of your rules and tinkering. Thousands added on to the payroll, with nothing to do, and now you've realised you can't pay them.
As for building a stronger, fairer and better Britain, well, you've had almost 13 years now. From where I've been standing, it's become weaker, unfairer and much, much worse.
Invite us in for a cuppa when we pass your gaff this morning, give all your advisors and spin doctors a scare. You might even like what we have to say.
Monday, 2 November 2009
This, to which my attention has been drawn by OH elsewhere today.
David Wilshire, the disgraced Conservative MP, has compared the treatment of politicians over their expense claims to the plight of Jews in Nazi Germany.
A voter who emailed to protest at Mr Wilshire’s behaviour received the reply in which Mr Wilshire compared MPs whose claims were exposed during the expenses scandal to Holocaust victims.
Right, bollocks to it, I've had enough of this shit now.
Firstly - In Nazi Germany the Jews were, after a period of restrictions on their liberties, rounded up, transported en masse and then put into a programme of systematic extermination.
Secondly - MP's have not had this treatment meted out to them.
Thirdly - Jews are an identifiable religious and socio-ethnic group.
Fourthly - MP's are not an identifiable religious and socio-ethnic group.
“The witch hunt against MPs in general will undermine democracy. It will weaken parliament - handing yet more power to governments. Branding a whole group of people as undesirables led to Hitler's gas chambers.”
Right, let's deal with that.
Firstly - In a good Democracy, constituents would be able to look at a venal, money grabbing MP and recall him or her, due to their complete loss of trust in his or her abilities or motives.
Secondly - It is all 646 of you who have weakened parliament. It is your governments who have stripped power from the individual and made them subordinate to the State. Do you mean to tell us that you sitting on your excessively well fed and expensively clothed arse syphoning cash off makes for a strong democracy? Do you think I'm stupid? Well, fuck you mate, your excessively well fed and expensively clothed arse is history.
Thirdly - Yes, the branding of a whole group of people as undesirables did indeed lead to Hitler's gas chambers. Those who would smoke, those who would drink, those who would eat, those who would be free of thought, those who would see us leave the EU, those who would go for a walk down the street, those who go for a walk in the park with their dog and forget to take a plastic bag, those who leave their bin fractionally open, those who would attempt to do their recycling like a good citizen but find the bins are full, those who would question the 'settled science' behind global warming/climate change, those who do what they can to get their kids into the best school available, those who stand at the Cenotaph and read out the names of the lads who have lost their lives on active service, those who would take a photograph of a public space, those who would take a photograph of a public servant, those who would have their friends look after their children, those who would show a bit of fucking humanity and pick up a child who has fallen and cut their knee, those who would drive a car, all have been branded as undesirables.
I could go on, but I fear I would lose the will to live. Funnily enough, MPs would not appear on that list, not even right at the bottom. You see, David, what MPs have done is bring it on themselves. What the people on the list above have had happen is have it forced on them by you and your mates.
No doubt you would dismiss all this as having happened under Labour. But you know what? I don't think you'd be any different. Is it just our money you want, David? I'm betting not, I'm betting you want our money and our obedience.
Still, let's see what else you've been doing.
Earlier this month, The Daily Telegraph disclosed that he had paid £105,000 from his office expenses to Moorlands Research Services, a firm owned himself and his girlfriend.
Doubtless your research firm are world leaders and provided excellent value for money. Even if that is the case, it is the perception of the thing. How could you be so stupid, so arrogant? Did you think we wouldn't find out, or did you just think we'd do as we were told when you stood in the way and told us to mind our own business? Your lot have been nosing around in our lives for years, now the spotlight has been switched. Not very nice is it?
He told his constituents that he had been “attacked” by the Telegraph, but was writing: “with a clear conscience”.
Well good for the Telegraph. It's nice to see something approaching investigative journalism these days. And no, you did not write with a clear conscience, in order for the conscience to be clear there has to be a conscience there in the first place. From where I'm sitting, MP's aren't shamefaced (although I'm struggling to think of one who is ashamed) because they've done wrong, they are angry because they've been caught. They are angry because the report talks about retrospective measures. Well, it's fucking good enough for us, isn't it? Have some of your own medicine, you fat old trougher.
he said: “It is in accord with the rules.”
Well yes. And who made those rules?
The destruction of Jewish businesses was within the rules (hey, you started this comparison, lard-arse), denying the Jewish housing was within the rules, turning Jews into slave labour was within the rules, hoarding the private belongings of the Jews was within the rules, sending Jews to concentration camps was within the rules.
Well, that was until the rest of the world got together in Nuremburg after the war and decided that it was all very much against the rules. How many of the old Nazis got uppity and huffy at the trials, David? Did they sound like you?
In his letter, the MP complained of being the victim of “false allegations” and insisted that his company was “a properly constituted business”.
He added: “This use of allowances to help an MP do his/her job is completely within Parliament’s rules.”
Again, who made these rules?
We are the world as far as you are concerned, David. And for all of you in the house, the General Election will be your Nuremburg.
646 of them. 60 Million of us.
I'm looking forward to my stroll on Thursday.