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PostPosted: Sun Feb 20, 2005 23:14 
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Hi Everyone. In the wake of the CSCP forum demise, I thought I’d repost my last anti-SCP critique here. It set off some interesting debate when first posted.:)

Firstly apologies for a rather long post.

However, before along with their millions of ardent supporters attempt to dismiss this post as conspiracist fantasy, we should firstly remind ourselves of recent statements made by some senior public figures. Richard Thomas, the UK Information Commissioner, has warned that the UK could "sleepwalk into a surveillance society" as a result of ID cards and other plans. George Churchill-Coleman, who headed Scotland Yard's anti-terrorist squad in the late 1980s and early 1990s, recently stated that the home secretary, Charles Clarke, is transforming Britain into a police state.

When I posted the link to a news article about RFID-tagged number plates, Mr Callaghan was quick to ridicule the original source of the information. However his legendary wit failed to resurface when the article was proved genuine. I also read that the ITV transmitter network has been sold off to a company who will be using it for, amongst other things, road toll enforcement via RFID, once the current users of certain frequencies have been migrated elsewhere. I’m sure this is just the tip of the iceberg. This network infrastructure has something like 95% coverage of the UK. Who needs the Galileo satellite system when you’ve already got this?

Whilst any rational thinking individual would regard this application of technology as potentially very sinister, support for it comes from a surprising source:

Quote:
(From CSCP's ian) I would like to see it (speed enforcement) linked with number plate recognition and electronic vehicle identifiers, linked to police intel and DVLA databases, with dedicated police response. Also more use of specs, with variable enforcement strategies linked to risk. National standards of enforcement, livery and methodology etc rather than locally agreed. Who knows what the future may bring.


In order to create a Police State you need a state full of criminals that requires policing. One very effective way to help achieve this objective is to criminalise Britain’s 30 million motorists - circa half the population. Steve Gooding, Director of the DfT’s Roads and Vehicles Directorate revealed this part of the Government’s strategy last summer in a statement to the House of Commons Transport Committee:

"Specifically, we are aware that some chief constables do have teams specifically going back through the records of people who have been caught on speed cameras, working on the principle that people who disregard one law tend to disregard several, and they then would pursue those in the sort of intelligent way you are suggesting to see what other offences they might be associated with."

What utter ignorant, fascist thinking. However the widespread and totally unnecessary lowering of speed limits accompanied by venomous enforcement is an essential component to this operation. Extensive studies by Parker during the late 80s and early 90s clearly demonstrated that, by merely changing the speed limit signs along a given stretch of road, there is no effect whatsoever on vehicle speeds. Yet this is the method of choice for “speed reduction” by the Government. Their sycophants and useful idiots are only too willing to implement it at the local level.

To quote the Parker report summary:

The results of the study indicated that lowering posted speed limits by as much as 20 mi/h (32 km/h), or raising speed limits by as much as 15 mi/h (24 km/h) had little effect on motorist' speed. The majority of motorist did not drive 5 mi/h (8 km/h) above the posted speed limits when speed limits were raised, nor did they reduce their speed by 5 or 10 mi/h (8 or 16 km/h) when speed limits are lowered. Data collected at the study sites indicated that the majority of speed limits are posed below the average speed of traffic. Lowering speed limits below the 50th percentile does not reduce accidents, but does significantly increase driver violations of the speed limit. Conversely, raising the posted speed limits did not increase speeds or accidents.

So, armed with this knowledge, it would be very easy to embark on a programme of systematic entrapment and criminalisation. This is exactly what the Government has sanctioned. Forget any notion that the current speed enforcement policy has anything to do with “saving lives” or “road safety”. Those absurd storylines are merely a front.

The official cover story becomes even more laughable as the DfT’s twisted ignorance manifests itself in some unbelievably crass publications. Consider their “new” thinking on how speed limits should be set:

Update of Circular Roads 1/93, Setting Local Speed Limits.

"Practitioners' thinking has evolved since then and many have expressed concern that 85th percentile speed can be heavily influenced by excessive speeds travelled by a minority of drivers. Some Traffic Authorities have therefore adopted the use of Mean speeds in assessing what is an appropriate local speed limit, as they are felt to better reflect what the majority of drivers perceive as an appropriate speed for the road. The Department shares this view and therefore recommends that mean speeds be used in future assessments of appropriate speed limits."


What total rubbish. Although the rest of the world knows better (i.e. the 85th percentile rule), it would appear the DfT are obliged to invent some ludicrous, pseudo-scientific counter-principle in order to give their speed limit lowering campaign a “credible” front. Remember also this statement from the Parker summary above:

"Lowering speed limits below the 50th percentile does not reduce accidents, but does significantly increase driver violations of the speed limit."

Even Richard Brunstrom now appears to talk (some) sense. Whilst addressing the recent IAM annual London meeting, he declared, “Every one of us could think of speed limits not 200 metres from our front door that are utterly bonkers. And if you think it is bonkers, you are less likely to comply with it. Yes, he really said that! And where have we heard that before?

Next let’s consider the new graduated fixes penalties for speeding offences - discussion note. Getting caught doing 57mph in 40mph zone would earn you 6 penalty points and £100 fine, i.e. just two strikes and you’re out. But suppose the 40 mph limit you were caught on was previously NSL and had been lowered by the manner studied by Parker above? Get the picture? Nasty, isn’t it?

And it gets worse. Now let’s consider the DfT’s proposed ban on radar detectors in the Road Safety Bill Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA).

"We are also seeking to ban the carriage of radar detectors. These identify where cameras are by sending out a radar beam that detects the signal emitted by the camera equipment."

Are they having a laugh? How the hell did the DfT ever get away with publishing this unscientific rubbish? Radar detectors contain passive oscillators which happen to emit very low levels of electromagnetic radiation. This is what the VG-2 anti-radar detector devices scan for. Insulting the public’s intelligence appears to be a Government priority, certainly a higher priority than road safety. MORI research in May 2001 reported that UK radar detector users are involved in 24% less accidents as they are more aware of their speed than non users. The statistics resulting from the MORI poll supports the earlier US survey by the respected Yankelovich, Clancy and Schulman consultants, which disclosed a figure of 23%. So why is the Government so desperate to ban them along with laser jammers?

GPS detectors are great for fixed camera sites and even if camera-specific GPS detectors were to be banned, many GPS navigation systems can easily be programmed with the camera waypoints. However mobile speed enforcement is the Government’s deadly weapon against the motorist, and they are now seeking to relax the rules for both Talivan visibility and siting (an increase in operating radius from the current 5km to 12km for a designated “black spot” or “area of concern”). Radar/laser detectors offer the only effective protection here (along with laser diffusers, of course).

The legendary Greek philosopher Plato made this very accurate observation: “One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.” This is exactly what voter apathy has led to in the UK. We are indeed governed by inferiors whose inadequacies have driven them to control and make a misery of the lives of ordinary people. Nowhere is this more apparent than with Government’s obsession with speed enforcement.

Best regards,

Max

PS In the wake of the original post I would like to point out that ian said his support for electronic vehicle identifiers was only in the context of stolen vehicle recovery and accident reporting. He did not advocate it being used in a “Big Brother” fashion.

In addition Pistonheads subsequently reported that Talivan numbers had increased by a whopping 35% over the last 12 monthswhilst fixed post speed enforcement had increased by only a small amount. I rest my case.


Last edited by Max Damage on Mon Feb 21, 2005 23:50, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2005 10:56 
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I bet you are the first one to complain when criminals are not apprehended by the Police.
I fully support the Police using any information they can to apprehend criminals.
The more efficient they are at doing it the better the deterrence.
We are a long way from a Police state as can be seen by the way you are allowed to post what you do, how you do and where you do it.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2005 12:27 
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The problem is one of evolving society and technological capability.
Crime has risen, driven by the permissive society and drugs mainly, and the technology employed by the 'state' has developed to address it. One might say that the two sides have moved along together. As more technology evolves to catch 'criminals' so real criminals will find ways around it. In reality, the majority of crimes are drug-related and electronics seem of minimal help in combatting this.
Criminalisation of non-criminals by the speed limit obsessed QUANGO's will feed both sides of the equation and those who will suffer will be ordinary people like us, and that includes you, JJ, whose freedoms and human rights will be eroded without recourse to any supportive body.
Am I alone on here in being afraid of the way the anti-terrorist legislation is taking away the right of every person to a fair trial by their peers if suspected or accused of any offence, terrorism included.
The new electronic age has provided the ability to track anyone (OR EVEN EVERYONE) to within one metre anywhere on this earth. The only question not asked is to what extent governments should be limited in their right to do so.
Speed enforcement is but one aspect of this erosion of person freedom and choice. And before you start saying that this would be a licence to speed and kill on the roads, remember what a small percentage of road accidents are caused by the exceeding of speed limits by 'ordinary' drivers as opposed to car thieves and criminals.
The problem is that the police service are not now able to address real crime due to official meddling in the way the do their jobs and the type of offences they concentrate on.
Those who support or are employed by the so-called and badly named 'Safety' Camera Partnerships are small, but compliant, cogs in a much larger machine with a well hidden agenda. Of course, they can't or won't see this.
The point has been made that we are still free to post our own comments on sites like this. Yes we are, but to put it into context, I couldn't post anything which offended against a person or group's religious beliefs, or ethnic origin, not that I particularly want to, it's just that we are not allowed to in the name of Polictical Correctness. Electronic speed enforcement is just cash-generating political correctness really and a part of the dumbing down of society into a great socialist dream where no-one does anything but toe the party line and comply with increasing restrictions without comment.
Yes, we still have some freedoms, but it is easier to list the restrictions imposed on us all over the last 50 years than to list the additional person freedoms gained over that same period.
Is there any doubt that the freedom of the individual is being eroded and that the state, using more and more electronics, are imposing control over our lives?
Are we all willing to accept this without a struggle?


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2005 12:36 
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JJ wrote:
We are a long way from a Police state as can be seen by the way you are allowed to post what you do, how you do and where you do it.


...but the fact that you feel some way incensed by this freedom of speech brings us a little step closer....


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2005 14:36 
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What makes you think that all the contributors to this site are not being noted down and monitored for "incorrect" thoughts?

Sorry just paranoid - or am I?

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The views expressed in this post are personal opinions and do not represent the views of Safespeed.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2005 14:57 
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malcolmw wrote:
Sorry just paranoid - or am I?


I'm not paranoid - I know everyone's out to get me!

:lol:


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2005 15:07 
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JJ wrote:
I bet you are the first one to complain when criminals are not apprehended by the Police.
I fully support the Police using any information they can to apprehend criminals.

Do you really? Would you support the fitment of state-monitored CCTV to all the rooms in your house? Presumably you'd be happy with this, on the grounds that you do nothing illegal there, so have nothing to fear, yes?

Quote:
The more efficient they are at doing it the better the deterrence.

Therein lies the problem. The sort of controls we are talking about don't make anything "more efficient", or at least not in a way that benefits the community at large.

Taking the example of traffic laws, I would say that the ideal definition of "illegal" would be "an action that is likely to cause a fatality". That would be the type of illegal driving that I would define as being of the highest importance to legislate against and to prosecute, and that the pursuit of any other motoring crime is clearly secondary to that aim. Indeed, I defy anyone to produce a rational and moral argument to counter that stance, to do so is to place political or financial considerations ahead of lives, which is unacceptable.

Yet in the current era we've actually got worse at this type of policing. We are nicking more people, yet seeing fatalities rise, so we've lost the track of both aims: we are enacting the wrong laws, and enforcing them badly. This is what happens when we allow technology to drive us simply because it is available and cost-effective, rather than us driving technology to deliver the correct solution.

For a further proof, has street crime - or even the perception of it - reduced with the widespread introduction of CCTV?

Quote:
We are a long way from a Police state as can be seen by the way you are allowed to post what you do, how you do and where you do it.

Even if we are a long way away, that's no reason to want to move nearer.

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Ticketo ergo sum : I scam therefore I am!


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2005 16:38 
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Let's face the facts. Street crime & organised crime are both up, driven mainly, I'm sure, by drug related activities. This is a battle the police can't ever win if we are realistic. The idea that we can eradicate the scourge of drugs by increased technology is, frankly, ludicrous.
The only way in which it could be controlled, by draconian penalties including capital punishment and life in prison sentences with no early release might reduce this crime.
So, to try to police street-level drug dealing is a bit of a waste of time. The methods of enforcement would be unacceptable to our current society.
In fact the way in which road policing is being tackled is not what it should be, either. It is, however, cost effective in pure cash terms. The police road patrols are cut back and the gov't churn out all the 'speed kills' spin to justify ytheir electronic surveillance which traps a majority of safe drivers whilst failing tomaddress the root cause of accidents - bad and inappropriate driving.
So all this technology is capable of achieving virtually nothing. Even CCTV, as JT points out, has not reduced street crime of drug dealing.
Speed cameras are not capable of addressing the road safety problems as they address too narrow a causation factor.
So we do move towards a more 'controlled' society on the basis that the majority must accept controls 'for their own good'. Oh, really!


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2005 20:23 
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JJ wrote:
We are a long way from a Police state as can be seen by the way you are allowed to post what you do, how you do and where you do it.


Like on the CSCP forum?, remind me where is that now?

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2005 22:31 
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kevinday wrote:
JJ wrote:
We are a long way from a Police state as can be seen by the way you are allowed to post what you do, how you do and where you do it.


Like on the CSCP forum?, remind me where is that now?


Very well said!
A bigger bunch of lying manipulators youll never find.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2005 22:51 
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DeltaF wrote:
A bigger bunch of lying manipulators youll never find.


Not any more...

:roll:


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2005 23:41 
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JJ wrote:
I bet you are the first one to complain when criminals are not apprehended by the Police.


That depends on how you define a criminal.

JJ wrote:
I fully support the Police using any information they can to apprehend criminals.
The more efficient they are at doing it the better the deterrence.
We are a long way from a Police state as can be seen by the way you are allowed to post what you do, how you do and where you do it.


You really don't get it, do you? There is a world of difference between a Police Force that polices by consent and a Police State. Your limited powers of understanding clearly preclude you from seeing the bigger picture.

You may think we are a long way from becoming a Police State but the necessary framework for such an environment is being constructed at an alarming rate. Instead of making irrelevant comments why don't you, by way of reasoned argument, point out the flaws and weaknesses in my commentary above? How about, as a starting point, explaining to everyone here why you think Richard Thomas and George Churchill-Coleman haven't a clue what they are talking about.

Best regards,

Max


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2005 11:08 
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Remember, JJ, there may be a world of difference between the powers the Police Service would like to be able to use like phone taps, electronic tagging/tracking of suspects, searches without a warrant, seizure of personal assets, detention without trial (the 'hot potato' at the moment), and the powers the general public find acceptable.
Once the line of acceptability is crossed you have a Police State, whether you accept this or not.
We are already seeing what amounts to 'Malfeasance in a public office' by certain Chief Constables who allowed documents and witness statements to be signed with an electronic signature, police services which allow civilians to do the jobs specifically reserved for proper police officers in law, failure to respond to the performance of possibly defective equipment (like the 'Dodgy-Scope), failure to repay those wrongly fined for certain offences. Do I need to go on.
We also have the nremoval of the right to silence in certain motoring offences, although it seems that this only applies if you are unaware of your rights to begin with.
Yes, my view is that we are moving towards a new dark age of a totally controlled society, which, in the words of Winston wil be 'made longer and more protracted by the lights of perverted science'.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2005 16:47 
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Cooperman wrote:
Remember, JJ, there may be a world of difference between the powers the Police Service would like to be able to use like phone taps, electronic tagging/tracking of suspects, searches without a warrant, seizure of personal assets, detention without trial (the 'hot potato' at the moment), and the powers the general public find acceptable.
Once the line of acceptability is crossed you have a Police State, whether you accept this or not.
We are already seeing what amounts to 'Malfeasance in a public office' by certain Chief Constables who allowed documents and witness statements to be signed with an electronic signature, police services which allow civilians to do the jobs specifically reserved for proper police officers in law, failure to respond to the performance of possibly defective equipment (like the 'Dodgy-Scope), failure to repay those wrongly fined for certain offences. Do I need to go on.
We also have the nremoval of the right to silence in certain motoring offences, although it seems that this only applies if you are unaware of your rights to begin with.
Yes, my view is that we are moving towards a new dark age of a totally controlled society, which, in the words of Winston wil be 'made longer and more protracted by the lights of perverted science'.


Just read an article this morning on the BBC website on Iran where two iranians had been locked up for 'Blogging'. in otherwards expressing there thoughts about the state. They are currently imprisioned in solitary confinement and have been subjected to torture over the period of their imprisonment. god only knows when or if they will be released. Now what were you saying about the UK being a police state

JJ


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2005 17:20 
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JJ wrote:

Just read an article this morning on the BBC website on Iran where two iranians had been locked up for 'Blogging'. in otherwards expressing there thoughts about the state. They are currently imprisioned in solitary confinement and have been subjected to torture over the period of their imprisonment. god only knows when or if they will be released. Now what were you saying about the UK being a police state

JJ


If the blog was "Considered" to be of a terrorist nature then there is nothing at all stopping the majority of their treatment happening here. So what constitutes terrorist action?


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2005 17:32 
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JJ wrote:
Cooperman wrote:
Remember, JJ, there may be a world of difference between the powers the Police Service would like to be able to use like phone taps, electronic tagging/tracking of suspects, searches without a warrant, seizure of personal assets, detention without trial (the 'hot potato' at the moment), and the powers the general public find acceptable.
Once the line of acceptability is crossed you have a Police State, whether you accept this or not.
We are already seeing what amounts to 'Malfeasance in a public office' by certain Chief Constables who allowed documents and witness statements to be signed with an electronic signature, police services which allow civilians to do the jobs specifically reserved for proper police officers in law, failure to respond to the performance of possibly defective equipment (like the 'Dodgy-Scope), failure to repay those wrongly fined for certain offences. Do I need to go on.
We also have the nremoval of the right to silence in certain motoring offences, although it seems that this only applies if you are unaware of your rights to begin with.
Yes, my view is that we are moving towards a new dark age of a totally controlled society, which, in the words of Winston wil be 'made longer and more protracted by the lights of perverted science'.


Just read an article this morning on the BBC website on Iran where two iranians had been locked up for 'Blogging'. in otherwards expressing there thoughts about the state. They are currently imprisioned in solitary confinement and have been subjected to torture over the period of their imprisonment. god only knows when or if they will be released. Now what were you saying about the UK being a police state

JJ


Precisely, JJ, you reinforce my point. In Iran they have crossed the line of acceptability and even you can clearly see this.
In addition, the point Max and I have made is that we are undoubtedly moving towards the type of society in which the previously held freedoms are being very slowly eroded because, we are told, it is good for us. CCTV now watches a lot of what we do and we are told this is to reduce crime, only that it is not reducing crime. Crime, particularly drug related offences, are increasing faster than the police can control them, even with this new technology.
It's the constant nibbling away at what, in my 64 years, I have regarded as my rights as an Englishman. Typically, my right to free speech, my right to be regarded as innocent until proven guilty, my right to silence if accused of an offence, my right to be treated equally under the law and not be regarded as a pariah because I am part of Middle England (i.e., relatively well-off financially, relatively successful in business, a home owner and a soon-to-be old-age pensioner). All the rights seem to be directed towards the minority groups. For example, a 'cleric' in London can mouth off the most vile racist incitements to violence and yet continue to live here and receive benefits. If I, however, go through a cash-camera and decide that I want to exercise a right to silence I have no rights whatsoever and the weight of the law may descend on me, unlike our 'cleric' friend, against whom no action is ever taken.
So, the new technology is directed at controlling those like me, middle England, who have always paid our taxes, contributed to our society from birth and who are easy targets for 'dumbing-down' by these socialist control freaks whom you serve so enthusiastically.
You just don't see it, do you. Do you really believe that the individual has the same personal freedoms as he/she had in 1955?
What's more, it is getting worse and will do so as long as we have this 'spin' expounding excuse for a proper government.
To think that you seem to personally actually believe the 'spin' from Tony B'liar and his lickspittles. Weapons of Mass Destruction? Better health service? Tough on crime & the causes of crime? Smaller school classes? Speed cameras save lives? Tough on Terrorism (after giving in to all the IRA Demands). All political b******t I'm afraid.
Did you know that I can't even transfer £3000 of my own money, on which I've paid tax, to my friend in the USA without being suspected of money laundering and being investigated by some faceless organisation.
JJ, I might not agree with what you say, but I will defend your right to say it to the ultimate degree.
'My' country is being screwed by the control freaks, and for my own good I'm told. Leave it out! Yes, I am disillusioned, but it's still my country and why should I move abroad. I'll stay and fight this from within. I will never carry an identity card with a micro-chip, that's for sure. I will never accept a speed-camera fixed penalty without a major fight, I will continue to say what I feel out loud. Those are my perceived rights. If society feels I should be in prison, then I'll join those of like mind when the time comes.
As Patrick McGoohan said "I am not a number!".


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2005 11:45 
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Cooperman wrote:
JJ wrote:
Cooperman wrote:
Remember, JJ, there may be a world of difference between the powers the Police Service would like to be able to use like phone taps, electronic tagging/tracking of suspects, searches without a warrant, seizure of personal assets, detention without trial (the 'hot potato' at the moment), and the powers the general public find acceptable.
Once the line of acceptability is crossed you have a Police State, whether you accept this or not.
We are already seeing what amounts to 'Malfeasance in a public office' by certain Chief Constables who allowed documents and witness statements to be signed with an electronic signature, police services which allow civilians to do the jobs specifically reserved for proper police officers in law, failure to respond to the performance of possibly defective equipment (like the 'Dodgy-Scope), failure to repay those wrongly fined for certain offences. Do I need to go on.
We also have the nremoval of the right to silence in certain motoring offences, although it seems that this only applies if you are unaware of your rights to begin with.
Yes, my view is that we are moving towards a new dark age of a totally controlled society, which, in the words of Winston wil be 'made longer and more protracted by the lights of perverted science'.


Just read an article this morning on the BBC website on Iran where two iranians had been locked up for 'Blogging'. in otherwards expressing there thoughts about the state. They are currently imprisioned in solitary confinement and have been subjected to torture over the period of their imprisonment. god only knows when or if they will be released. Now what were you saying about the UK being a police state

JJ


Precisely, JJ, you reinforce my point. In Iran they have crossed the line of acceptability and even you can clearly see this.
In addition, the point Max and I have made is that we are undoubtedly moving towards the type of society in which the previously held freedoms are being very slowly eroded because, we are told, it is good for us. CCTV now watches a lot of what we do and we are told this is to reduce crime, only that it is not reducing crime. Crime, particularly drug related offences, are increasing faster than the police can control them, even with this new technology.
It's the constant nibbling away at what, in my 64 years, I have regarded as my rights as an Englishman. Typically, my right to free speech, my right to be regarded as innocent until proven guilty, my right to silence if accused of an offence, my right to be treated equally under the law and not be regarded as a pariah because I am part of Middle England (i.e., relatively well-off financially, relatively successful in business, a home owner and a soon-to-be old-age pensioner). All the rights seem to be directed towards the minority groups. For example, a 'cleric' in London can mouth off the most vile racist incitements to violence and yet continue to live here and receive benefits. If I, however, go through a cash-camera and decide that I want to exercise a right to silence I have no rights whatsoever and the weight of the law may descend on me, unlike our 'cleric' friend, against whom no action is ever taken.
So, the new technology is directed at controlling those like me, middle England, who have always paid our taxes, contributed to our society from birth and who are easy targets for 'dumbing-down' by these socialist control freaks whom you serve so enthusiastically.
You just don't see it, do you. Do you really believe that the individual has the same personal freedoms as he/she had in 1955?
What's more, it is getting worse and will do so as long as we have this 'spin' expounding excuse for a proper government.
To think that you seem to personally actually believe the 'spin' from Tony B'liar and his lickspittles. Weapons of Mass Destruction? Better health service? Tough on crime & the causes of crime? Smaller school classes? Speed cameras save lives? Tough on Terrorism (after giving in to all the IRA Demands). All political b******t I'm afraid.
Did you know that I can't even transfer £3000 of my own money, on which I've paid tax, to my friend in the USA without being suspected of money laundering and being investigated by some faceless organisation.
JJ, I might not agree with what you say, but I will defend your right to say it to the ultimate degree.
'My' country is being screwed by the control freaks, and for my own good I'm told. Leave it out! Yes, I am disillusioned, but it's still my country and why should I move abroad. I'll stay and fight this from within. I will never carry an identity card with a micro-chip, that's for sure. I will never accept a speed-camera fixed penalty without a major fight, I will continue to say what I feel out loud. Those are my perceived rights. If society feels I should be in prison, then I'll join those of like mind when the time comes.
As Patrick McGoohan said "I am not a number!".


Well effing said.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 24, 2005 01:11 
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OK JJ - you lurk here and on PH. You know my wife, Wildy, lived in Leipzig under the Stasis for a while (as did the member of this family who posted as Jessika Tiger - she was in Berlin.) Both my wife and her cousin can recall how they were followed around during their brief stay there. Neither woman can be described as "nervous" yet they both felt menaced by this. They see parallels between UK as it is now and life as they knew it in the 80s for three months.

But let's just explore from history how quickly a police state can develop: if you frequent the PH site, you will find my wife often refers to a favourite novel of hers - "False Triumphs" by Hans Werner Richter (based on his observations.) The novel is about two brothers-in-law caught up in Nazi Germany. One is apolitical and the other a communist (who was persecuted relentlessly by the Nazis and even jailed in the story). However, the apolitical one was sucked intot he Nazi vacuum.

The apolitical character was a barber and just never bothered reading the papers - a "live and let live" type. The author describes how the barber's customers started to wear uniforms, appeared to have lost character overnight and acted in an aggressive and military manner. Anecdotes and friendly chatter ceased Richter captured the gradual change towards accepting a totalitarian State fairly accurately throughout the novel. The false triumphs incidentally occurred for both heroes and enemies alike - and all were down to complacent pride. (Novel is worth a read! :wink: Not sure if it exists in English translation - but it's written in very simple German - quite an easy read if you have an 'O' Level in the language! :wink: )

This same stealth of an impending police state is captured in Anne Frank's diary as well - and by the writings of those concerned with concealing that family. Laws passed every other day... all seeming pedantic but not one person realising the significance of small, pedantic infractions. One can see some similarities with the draconian fine imposed on a person who refused to name a Jewish person on a commercial declaration with the one imposed on a reigistered keeper who cannot name a driver of a car. :wink: Still a case of confess, snitch, or receive a worse punishment than the original fine! :roll:

Now we have legislation being impose under the disguise of "nightmare politics" - the same tactics as used by Hitler (and other psot war dictatorships). This legislation violates the Magna Carta itself and gives power to an UK leadership unknown since King John himself was forced to sign the Magna Carta in 1215.

We have some element of free speech - but how long for exactly? Police States do not just suddenly appear - they occur by stealth - and we are in some danger of this becoming reality if we continue pandering to and feeding the ego of the current fibbling incumbent of No 10.

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KEEP SMILING
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Smily to penny.. penny to pound
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But the real message? SMILE.. GO ON ! DO IT! and the world will smile with you!
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 24, 2005 11:28 
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One has to read and learn the history of the 20th century to realise how the freedoms and values can be slowly eroded.
I may seem a bit aggressive in my posts at time (most times!), but I do really and genuinely fear for our long-held freedoms in this country.
There can be little doubt that our freedom is being eroded and particulaly since the current 'spin-riddled' gov't took power in 1997.
The proposed detention by the gov't, not by the judiciary, of so-callede 'terrorist suspects' is a dangerous move indeed. Having ley all the properly convicted IRA terrorists out of the nick, and having, when in opposition, criticised the internment process in N.Ireland, they now want the ability to say "We think you are a terrorist, so inside (somewhere) you go. We don't intend to tell you why you are a suspect and you have no right to a trial or any other form of defence." It means they can put any opponent inside indefinately. I suppose 'Arbeit macht frei' would not be appropriate.
Is there any doubt that this gov't is taking more powers over the individual as never before. Where are the checks and balances from the judiciary?
Does anyone doubt that the right to silence, which has been removed for certain road traffic alleged offences will be spread to other areas of the law if this is allowed to continue unchallenged.
That's where the Yanks are fortunate in having a written constitution with its legendary 5th amendment. We really need this now.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 24, 2005 11:33 
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The last glimmer of hope is that this latest piece of legislation gets blocked by the House of Lords, but even that would probably only be a temporary reprieve, given the way the parliament act was recently invoked to get the hunting ban passed "at all costs".

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