(h/t Old Holborn)
It looks like we're about to see whether our politicians meant what they said in their grand preening exercise yesterday when they talked about serious action for those who had been involved in the riots. Particularly on the spot over this one is our PM. One of the items mentioned yesterday was the removal of benefits for those found to be involved in the looting.
It looks like the first test of this piece of rhetoric has arrived in the form of Wandsworth Council apparently issuing an eviction notice to the family whose offspring was involved in the events of the last few days. Unfortunately it is something of a no win situation for a politician.
The process now involves the order application going through the courts to be assessed by a judge who will rule on the decision. We are about to see if the judge will grant it. If it is not granted, the outcry will join the other criticisms around the tough talk such as the light sentences being meted out contrary to what was suggested. If the judgement is to evict them, whilst politicians might use this as the basis for reflected glory, another question will be lurking in the wings. If no new powers have been designed, such a decision will be based on existing laws. The question will be one of where was the deployment of these available laws in days and years gone by when people were crying out for help and protection. The idea that they were hamstrung by other laws will be shown to be an opportune falsehood for some strange reason being used to maintain the status quo.
Whichever light you look at it in, it doesn't look good does it?