Thursday, 11 August 2011

Answers on a postage stamp please

We've been fortunate to have a relatively quiet night and hopefully it is more than a lull in the proceedings.  Of course some might have some questions about some of the things we have seen and a little bit of "what next?".  So here are a few of mine:

I see the courts are handing out sentences (albeit paltry) for virtually every crime related to the riots.  What's changed?  What I mean by that is for years now the British public as been crying out for action on crime and all the time we've been given short shrift.  Politicians have pointed to all sorts of reasons why it couldn't happen while we despaired and our criminal element grew stronger.  Suddenly, Dave and the other cronies have had some bad press and all that has changed.  I don't think the MP's have been rewriting the law from the various villas around the world so these powers are not new and yet suddenly we can apply them. Hmmm, would it be evidence that there has been deliberate application of brakes on magistrates from nipping this kind of thing in the bud.

I understand all police leave has been cancelled.  Aside from questions about how sustainable this is over the longer term, I wonder what it says to the public when politicians are asking them to do more with less, when it turns out they will get paid for having their  holidays interrupted to return and talk this subject to death for their own political ends.  There are several appeals going on across the Internet to raise funds for the mugged student and Aaron Biber, the barber in his 80's who got turned over.  How many of those MP's will redirect their pay for today to such causes to show they really mean those platitudes each of them will utter when they stand up in Parliament today?

What exactly does water cannon deployed on 24 hours notice mean?  Does it mean asking the rioters to come back to the same place the next night so you that they can get hosed down.  Is this what the Home Secretary meant by policing by consent?  The oddity of this is that it gives the impression that tough talk was for show, in which the PM can sound tough making promises that he is never really going to have to deliver on.

My final question is what now?  Yes it has gone quiet and I hope it remains that way but in reality nothing has changed.  All that has happened is the perpetrators of this have retreated to sleep off their indulgence and to rest their shoulders from the huge chip on them they've been carrying around.  Their attitudes remain the same.  The structures that permit them to feel the way they do and thrive still remain.  The consequences that are currently being wheeled out (a short term PR measure) are not sustainable for too long.  There is still a system creaking from social woodworm and nothing will changed until this is fixed. 

I'm sure I have more but as I don't expect to receive answers to these, I'll reserve my energy and leave it there for the sake of my health.

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