Top policeman has audacity to compare protesting with theft


9:05 am - January 28th 2011

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contribution by Steven Sumpter

The Guardian yesterday reported that Prospect Magazine (£) had interviewed Sir Hugh Orde, president of the Association of Chief Police Officers.

I remind you that the ACPO is a private for-profit company that seems to have a say in the way that we are policed, without being subject to the Freedom of Information Act or any democratic oversight. The interview was very revealing about police perception of social media as a method of organising protests and about their attitude to protesters’ rights.

Orde is of the opinion that “hyper kettling” (containment followed up by crushing the crowd) is acceptable even though it infringes on human rights. “I can understand the need for it, [It is done] for the greater good, and that’s the really complex part of policing.”

On charging at protesters with horses, he said it was a “very useful, effective tactic.”. Kettling is currently working its way through the court system after various victims of it launched legal challenges on human rights grounds.

Behind the police line

Orde also equated protesting on private property with theft, demonstrating an amazing ability to confuse things in his head. Perhaps he is the one telling people that photography in public places is illegal too?

Walking into Topshop with an intent to cause damage, [means] you’re actually a burglar. If you walk into Boots and do nothing then you are simply a trespasser and the role of the police is to stand by to prevent a breach of the peace.

His statement implies that UK Uncut protesters intend to cause damage. As a senior policeman he will probably get away with such ludicrous defamation. I believe that he is wrong about the trespassing too. As shops are normally open to the public, it is my understanding that any member of the public is free to enter until such time as a representative of the shop asks that person to leave.

It is trespassing if protesters have been asked to leave and refuse, but it is shocking that a high-ranking police officer does not understand the difference.

Where Orde’s understanding fails completely is on the nature of the current anti-cuts protests.

It is not good enough to throw our hands up in the air and say ‘Oh, we can’t negotiate because there is no one to negotiate with. There are lots of people we can talk to, but they need to stand up and lead their people too. If they don’t, we must be clear that the people who wish to demonstrate won’t engage, communicate or share what they intend to do with us, and so our policing tactics will have to be different … slightly more extreme.

This idiot has no right to tell any of the protesters that it is “not good enough” to have no leader. These people are not docile little sheep, and they don’t have to follow anyone to object to the government conducting a slash-and-burn campaign on our benefits and our public services.

If protests can be organised through a consensus via social networks then there is no conceivable reason why the police can’t have their say on the same social networks.

When I was talking to a friend about this interview earlier she said something which I think sums up nicely what the protesters think about the situation.

Anonymoosh said “The police find a way to engage , when they want to, this time they don’t, they want people to be too scared to demo. They only want to know what we are doing , so that they can plan to stop it, they don’t want to engage. They know full well when the meetings are, we arrange them on the net. The truth is , as a movement, we have no need of leaders, it’s the police that need us to, I don’t see why we should oblige.

Does Orde really think that people are refusing to engage, or does he prefer to have a nice ready-made excuse to kettle the little people?

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Reader comments


Yes to a number of your points, but…

“remind you that the ACPO is a private for-profit company” – hardly germane to your case and is it true? – or are you running away with anti-corporatism.

There are plenty of things wrong with ACPO, but when I last checked it was “limited by guarantee” and not-for-profit.

I’m not getting into a wrestle about cuts, but of course UK Uncut demos have leaders and organisers – they just don’t want to be identified as such :-).

I can confirm, in spite of the fact that I’m hosting the Facebook event for the London action in Boots, I have yet to hear from the police on this subject.

If they want to get in touch, I’m sure they know where to find me.

If walking into a shop and doing nothing means you are a trespasser, does this mean now that merely browsing in a shop is illegal?

The attitude of this vile man typifies what a totalitarian dictatorship is and why people have to make sure scum like him are removed from office and, prevented from getting there in the first place. We all know it suits the government fine when vile dictators like him are accelerated into these positions. It feeds their regime nicely.
My brother is a DI (Detective Inspector) and get a nice annual bonus ever year of over £2000 as a sweetener to buy is loyalty and silence. No surprise there at all. The high the rank, the more corrupt they are and the bigger the bonus.
Over the last 30 years the Western countries have gradually become dictatorships over the citizens and have used divide and conquer as a tool to turn the public against each other through a class system, prejudice, financial sweeteners for those in authority and created mass poverty while manipulating the ‘unemployment’ sats. The actual figure is over 9.6 Million people out of work in the UK. But, because the media serves the? upper classes, especially the propaganda machine BBC, people are denied the reality.
From Police State brutality and ketlngs and protest bans, to detention of people for long periods of time without charge, under their anti ‘terror’ laws. This is the real UK. It’s become a totalitarian dictatorship that has most of the cowardice public isolated and powerless.
.The scourge of predatory capitalism has allowed 90% of the entire wealth to be dominated by 5% of the population and, most of these are arrogant mid-upper class toffs.
Resistance to all these cuts and laws are needed and, I’m not sure if a policy of peaceful protests will ever work. Those ruining millions of lives are terrorist to me and should be held account properly.
While the minority of rich vile scum (backed by their Police State UK), esp the Bankers, their government cronies and corporations continue to ride rough shot over a cowardice public, the worse the eventual outcome will be.
History shows that lives have to be sacrificed? in order to preserve freedoms and equality in the face of human selfish evil scum in power.

http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc4/hs278.snc4/40227_140208469352968_137748819598933_193305_2374199_n.jpg

Walking into Topshop with an intent to cause damage, [means] you’re actually a burglar.

Burglary =/= theft. The definition of burglary is as follows:

“A person is guilty of burglary if he enters any building or part of a building as a trespasser with intent to steal, inflict grievous bodily harm [or raping any person therein][1], or do unlawful damage to the building or anything in it”

Since trespass is simply unauthorised entry on to private land, there’s a pretty good argument that protestors entering a building with the intention of doing any damage to it is guilty of burglary. Not theft.

Ho hum, another lovely illustration of everybody’s ignorance of the law.

This idiot has no right to tell any of the protesters that it is “not good enough” to have no leader.

And this idiot hasn’t read what the policeman actually said – which was that it wasn’t good enough for the police to throw their hands up and admit defeat because the protestors don’t have a leader. If there’s nobody to negotiate with, you can’t negotiate. That’s fairly straightforward I’d have thought. And could someone tidy up the html?

‘This idiot has no right to tell any of the protesters that it is “not good enough” to have no leader.’

Well said! Tony Blair showed the same misunderstanding of democracy in his Today interview on Egypt this morning. They don’t like it when the people aren’t cowed and ‘lead’ themselves. We’re not playing the game their way.

Orde is of the opinion that “hyper kettling” (containment followed up by crushing the crowd) is acceptable even though it infringes on human rights.

Lots of things are acceptable even though they infringe human rights. The test is one of “necessity” and “proportionality” – and, so far, kettling has been found lawful. (Although I don’t think nine hours has been tested; also IIRC kettling is due to be tested in the ECtHR)

I believe that he is wrong about the trespassing too. As shops are normally open to the public, it is my understanding that any member of the public is free to enter until such time as a representative of the shop asks that person to leave.

Not sure, but I think there is implied consent for members of the public to browse and/or buy, not occupy, but yes, if you refuse to leave when asked you are committing trespass (and potentially breach of the peace depending on the level of resistance), I don’t think anyone’s going to bother starting civil proceedings for trespass against people who haven’t been asked to leave.

And AIUI current guidelines, officers won’t remove people – in the general case – if the people haven’t been asked to leave!

Anthony, we do not live in a police state.

I must say, this sort of language trivialises the problems faced by those who do.

“when you invite a person into your house to use the staircase, you do not
invite him to slide down the banisters, your invite him to use the staircase in
the ordinary way in which it is used”. – Scrutton LJ

@Ukliberty,
Clearly you are an antagonistic person defending repressive regime policies and probably an active or ex Police, MP, etc.
I’d like you to put your blinkered opinion over whether the UK is, or is no,t a Police State dictatorship to Ian Thomlinson’s family or, Charles De Menenges family or, the 50,000 peaceful protesters or, the victims of Kettling at the G20 summit or, the Photographers held under ‘anti terror’ laws for days without charge or, those ask why the CPS (Crown Prosecution Service) is reassessing: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jan/27/charlie-gilmour-charged-student-protests
You clearly need to come out of your cocooned brainwashed box and become a free thinker.
The Western countries have become repressive regimes that are no different to Iran or North Korea. They’re just better at it and more subtle.

Anthony,

Clearly you are an antagonistic person defending repressive regime policies and probably an active or ex Police, MP, etc.

O RLY?

“The Western countries have become repressive regimes that are no different to Iran or North Korea. They’re just better at it and more subtle.”

Grow up

@ukliberty
That must have taken a lot of thinking about!
It’s difficult when someone who defends civil rights against repressive regimes speaks out and challenges people like you who defend them.
Take heed of the Owl and fly away unless you’ve something more substantial to contribute.

@sl
I bet that took you all of 10 minutes to come up with that reply!
Try a little harder next time.
It’s very wise people like me who know exactly what’s going on in society and I will defend freedom of speech and freedoms of protest and act against those who perpetrate repressive policies and manipulate laws to defend corrupt wealthy scum.

#14

Are you for real or is this some sort of Sokal type post generator

“It’s very wise people like me who know exactly what’s going on”

Is this sunny using a different name

Anthony, you don’t seem like you’re interested in a reasonable discussion because you seem to have jumped to an erroneous conclusion about me without any evidence and you are making silly claims. That is the reason for my lack of effort @11.

If you’re genuinely interested in reasonable discussion try this:

I don’t recall Tomlinson’s or de Menezes’s (not Menenges) families claiming we live in a police state. They were however rightly and understandably very critical of not only the circumstances of the deaths of those two innocent people but also how the investigations were conducted and reported on, and how a person can be killed without someone being held accountable in the same way that another member of the public would be for a prima facie unlawful killing.

In relation to the shooting of de Menezes, I criticised the authorities along those very lines on my blog (213 posts containing “menezes”) and elsewhere. Try doing a bit of research.

… the Photographers held under ‘anti terror’ laws for days without charge

Please cite.

@sl
I’m for real okay.
No, I’m not Sunny, whoever he/she is.
Those who defend repression and totalitarian dictatorships can always expect verbal attacks from me ‘cos they are terrorists against peoples freedoms and, causes of mass poverty and hate.
Police who defend evil scum, whether it’s ‘just their job’ to do so, should look further than their own selfish agendas and see the wider fabric of society is in ruins at the hands of the corrupt rich Bankers, Corporations and government policies. They too may lose their jobs and find themselves on the opposing side and facing the dictatorship UK Police State.

“No, I’m not Sunny, whoever he/she is.”

I’m lovin’ it

@Yeah, I will enter into a discussion with ‘ya, so long as open your mind from it’s closed biased position.
UK Police State Dictatorship?:
Photographers held under ‘anti terror’ laws:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2010/feb/21/photographer-films-anti-terror-arrest?INTCMP=SRCH
Train Spotters, Artists, Journalists, etc. stopped and searched under ‘anti terror’ laws:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/henryporter/2009/jan/07/trainspotter-arrest?INTCMP=SRCH
Etc:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2010/may/10/stop-search-photographer-grant-smith?INTCMP=SRCH

Jean Charles Menezes’s family are evidence and victims of UK Police Brutality and a dictatorship regime.

Ian Thomlinson was a victim of UK Police State brutality along with victims of Ketling tactics to suppress legitimate protests against a regime that’s no different to North Korea or Iran.

Under Labours time in office the UK has eroded civil rights under the guise and cover of ‘anti terror’ laws.
Governments run by wealthy Millionaires and manipulated by corporations who suppress public decent, are tantamount to ‘Terrorists’, that need challenging, resisting and public disobedience and defiance against repressive laws.

Anthony,

You’re not part of the Zeitgeist movement, by any chance, are you?

22. Chaise Guevara

Anthony, please look up the following:

Police state
Dictatorship
Propaganda

…fuck it, just buy a dictionary and start from aardvark.

Oh, and you calling UKLiberty blinkered? That’s the most hilariously hypocritical thing I’ve heard all month.

@blupillnation
I did like to fashion myself with a bit of SOCA info!

Anthony

Do you know a girl called Sally by any chance?

@Chaise Guevara
Perhaps you’d like to take a little of your own advice and acquire a Thesaurus. You’ll learn there are many alternative words that have the same meaning.
And, I need not check interpretations of the words I use like ‘Police State’, ‘Dictatorship’, ‘Propaganda’ or, ‘Regime’, ‘cos I live in one. The UK.
Grow up.

#24

I was going to ask that

@Pagar
No but, I do know of a prat called Pagar!

Anthony says “Grow up” -magic

“I need not check interpretations of the words”

INTERPRETATIONS

Words mean exactly what i say they mean, no more, no less.

This is the best Friday afternoon thread for a very long time.

29. Chaise Guevara

@ 25 Anthony

@ 25

“Perhaps you’d like to take a little of your own advice and acquire a Thesaurus. You’ll learn there are many alternative words that have the same meaning.”

Ah yes. I’d forgotten that “police state” and “dictatorship” can both mean “liberal democracy”, while “propaganda” means “legally-mandated even-handed reporting”. Thank you for enlightening me.

@sl
Stick around, it’ll get a whole lot more amusing!

@Chaise Guevara
Try look up the word ‘Deluded’.
You spring to mind!

And people on here were telling me a few days ago I should join with the police and support them going on strike for higer pay.

No fucking way. Rotten to the core.

33. Chaise Guevara

@ 31

No, YOU’RE fat.

Sally

Do you know…………………

Thanks Chaise.

Anthony,

… a regime that’s no different to North Korea or Iran.

If you genuinely believe this I don’t see a point in engaging with you any further – it would be a waste of our time for me to try to persuade you of something that is manifestly and obviously untrue.

That is not to say we don’t have laws I think are illiberal or to disagree that governments over time including Labour 1997-2010 eroded our liberty (I blogged over 1,000 articles about the latter – btw, you cited Henry Porter’s Guardian blog, I’m on his blogroll…).

Having read this blog, I totally agree with Anthony.
I’m more shocked at just how many of you clique are trying to gang up on him. He’s obviously a defender of the people and one day we may all need people like him.
Well said Anthony and thank you for those links that have really opened my eyes to how much the Britain is a Police controlling ‘repressive regime’ full of corruption.

37. Chaise Guevara

Oh gods, it’s spreading

37 – stupidity is contagious.

@ukliberty
Sounds like an easy cop out of a discussion! I expected that one!
I wanted to get chatting about Wikileaks and the repression going on as we speak, with arrests of kids from ‘anonymous’!
Perhaps a little to near the truth?

Maybe his full name is Anthony Miller – just a thought.

@Miller
You are welcome!
@ukliberal no longer wants to chat with me so, I’m sure he won’t with you!

Strange how they both like to end sentences with an exclamation mark.

43. Shatterface

‘Orde also equated protesting on private property with theft, demonstrating an amazing ability to confuse things in his head. Perhaps he is the one telling people that photography in public places is illegal too?’

Private property IS theft – so protest on private property is just taking back what doesn’t belong.

44. Chaise Guevara

@ 39 Miller

There are plenty of illiberal things that go on in otherwise liberal democracies. The Wikileaks issue, Gitmo Bay and extraordinary rendition are all examples. Nobody here is denying that.

The problem with Anthony is that he’s either paranoid or excitable enough to decide that this means we live in a dictatorship, which we patently don’t: elections every 4/5 years, remember? If you just want to talk about specific examples of illiberalism, please do, and more power to you. If you’re going to emulate Anthony, however, and make absurd claims like “the UK is just like North Korea”, you can expect a less friendly reception.

Oh crap, who let the purple-ink brigade in…

@Anthony! If we live in a police state – as you say – why oh why hasn’t THE MAN got hold of YOU and locked you AWAY yet for speaking the TRUTH??!!!11 I mean, they must have your IP address/email contacts/bug your phone/follow where you go online… because you’re SUCH a revolutionary, possibly the only free mind left, am I right?

@Chaise Guevara
Anthony’s opinions are as valid as anyone else of course. I have found his information to be very interesting and quite alarming. I don’t like the gang culture on here seeming to scupper his opinions though. He may liken Britain to North Korea and Iran but I’m not sure if he has some good valid points even though them countries are much worse.
On the subject of Wikileaks and free journalism, it’s quite alarming to see kids being arrested for DoSS attacks to sites that withdrew access to Wiki. If information is in the public interest, esp. when it concerns our own country implicated in corruptions & double standards and killings, then Wikileaks & Assange are morally correct, don’t you think?

So, in conclusion:

i) Orde is technically correct to state that entrance to private property with intent to cause criminal damage is burglary (’68 Theft Act, section 9(1)(a))

ii) there is a reasonable possibility that Orde’s intended point has been (deliberately ?) misconstrued in both the grauniad article and this piece

iii) the Tooting Popular Front has arrived at LC

Power to the people, Anthony….

48. Baying Lynch Mob

@drive-by-Tony

“Photographers held under ‘anti terror’ laws: [3 links]”

Which of those were held “under ‘anti terror’ laws for days without charge”, then?

@Miller re DOS attacks

Man for all seasons.
This country is planted thick with laws from coast to coast, man’s laws not God’s, and if you cut them down — and you’re just the man to do it — do you really think that you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then?

@46

“it’s quite alarming to see kids being arrested for DoSS attacks”

Why? DoSS attacks are illegal. We can debate whether that’s right or wrong, and whether morally people should be allowed to use DoSS attacks against sites that are anti-wikileaks, but that doesn’t change the facts of the law… it’s not “alarming” at all. It would be alarming if the kids had used TOR network to carry out their attacks and managed to get caught, but these kids were, to quote one security analyist, the equivalent of writing hundreds of letters to someone with their names and addresses on the back.

Your pal Anthony does himself no favours saying the UK is like Iran or North Korea, and it is hugely insulting to the victims of those regimes to claim so. Like when someone says “oh that’s no better than the Nazis” when they get a parking ticket.

Gah, DDoS attack I mean.

@Mr S. Pill
You talk of ‘laws’ as if they should never be questioned as to whether they are right or not. Nothing is set in concrete, not even laws. This is where I agree with Anthony. It’s all too easy to create ‘laws’ that are so absurd and manipulated to protect a certain sector of the people, ie. Politicians, Corporations or the Police. When this is the case, they clearly need challenging or disobeying.
Those kids are an example of laws being used to defend massive financial institutions on behalf of the wealthy. That isn’t right.

@52

Not at all, and in some respect I agree with you. I just don’t think it’s disturbing that laws that’ve been in place for some years are being used to punish people who’ve committed crimes.

eg, I might (and do) think that the banks are corrupt, and that I’d be right to go and break a window down the local RBS or somewhere. Morally I may be right (for arguments sake let’s go with it) but criminally I’d have a case to answer. It wouldn’t be “disturbing” that I got arrested, is my point.

I agree that Wikileaks is persecuted by various arms of the state/establishment, but let’s not go Spooks-tastic and pretend that shadowy actors are harrassing innocent children. The kids knew they were breaking the law and should’ve been more careful. It’s not hard to hide your IP address…

and FWIW I agree with civil disobediance to break laws that are wrong (poll tax, for instance) – not so sure that DDoS attacks should be legal though – could cripple lefties blogs for one thing…

@Mr S. Pill
Yeah, fair points you raise. I disagree on the kids being arrested. They probably didn’t know how to block their IP addresses. They are still brave heroes as far as I’m concerned. And yes, DDoS attacks should not be illegal. There are programmes that prevent them anyway. These kids being arrested is all part and parcel of what Anthony raised earlier about Britain & the US ‘dictatorship regimes’. I’m inclined to agree as I see it happening every day.

@Tim J
“And this idiot hasn’t read what the policeman actually said – which was that it wasn’t good enough for the police to throw their hands up and admit defeat because the protestors don’t have a leader.”

The statement could be read either way. Read it in the context of the sentence that follows –
“There are lots of people we can talk to, but they need to stand up and lead their people too.”
He is saying that the people that the police speak to need to lead “their people.” He has no right to demand that.

For those discussing whether we have a police state or not, I recently made a list of a few things that point to an authoritarian state heading towards a police state. You can read it on my blog. http://www.latentexistence.me.uk/do-we-live-in-a-police-state-short-version/

56 – He’s not demanding anything, he’s merely saying that if there’s no-one for the police to negotiate with, there can be no negotiations. Which is a statement of the obvious.

and FWIW I agree with civil disobediance to break laws that are wrong (poll tax, for instance) – not so sure that DDoS attacks should be legal though – could cripple lefties blogs for one thing…

‘We’ – our fairly democratic society – have decided that they are illegal. But it does not mean the courts will find against every defendant.

Take the ‘Kingsnorth Six’ for example: on the face of it a clear case of criminal damage, they were prosecuted for criminal damage but acquitted by a jury. (“no different to Iran or North Korea”…?)

Some people talk as if a law or arrest is the be-all and end-all but we have a few checks-and-balances.

@58

“they need to stand up and lead their people too.”

He is saying that protesters should have leaders. Whether a comment or an instruction, it is not his place to say it. Policing is not supposed to be about who the police can negotiate with, arranging things to suit the police, or telling people what to do. If it is about those things then we are all in trouble.

@ukliberty ..”Some people talk as if a law or arrest is the be-all and end-all but we have a few checks-and-balances”
Well, that’s the problem isn’t it. If the defendant doesn’t fit the bill, the courts have discretion to please themselves! With political influence or, US FBI interset, Assange wouldn’t stand a chance under this ‘pick and choose’ ethos!
I’d like to hear your views on the kids being arrested like @Miller mentioned. What about Wikileaks? Do you feel they or, anyone else has a moral duty to expose evidence of corruptions, cover-ups, killings and manipulations of evidence?

62. Chaise Guevara

@ 46 Miller

[I’ll let S. Pill deal with the DDoS stuff, he knows more about it than me.]

“Anthony’s opinions are as valid as anyone else of course. I have found his information to be very interesting and quite alarming. I don’t like the gang culture on here seeming to scupper his opinions though. He may liken Britain to North Korea and Iran but I’m not sure if he has some good valid points even though them countries are much worse.”

Well, you can say that all opinions are equally valid, but does that apply to my opinion that the sky is green? It depends what you mean by “valid”, reallly: Anthony’s right to express his opinions is as valid as everyone elses, but his assessment of the situation is dead wrong.

Focus too much on validity and you end up with a situation where nobody’s allowed to disagree with anyone else because it’s interpreted as oppressing them.

As for him being ganged-up on: yeah, fair enough, although that’s partly what inevitably happens when one person disagrees with the vast majority of posters. People on sites like this don’t delegate one friend to make their points for them; they all like to get involved.

I’m sorry if it looks a bit like bullying, but melodramatics like Anthony’s are extremely annoying. And as he’s happy to post content-free insults and accuses people who disagree with him of being fascists who are working for the man, he is kinda asking to be shouted at.

Anthony,

@ukliberty ..”Some people talk as if a law or arrest is the be-all and end-all but we have a few checks-and-balances”
Well, that’s the problem isn’t it.

No, it isn’t the problem, it’s bloody good that we have a few checks-and-balances, and it means we don’t live in a police state.

If the defendant doesn’t fit the bill, the courts have discretion to please themselves!

I don’t understand what you mean by this.

I’d like to hear your views on the kids being arrested like @Miller mentioned. What about Wikileaks? Do you feel they or, anyone else has a moral duty to expose evidence of corruptions, cover-ups, killings and manipulations of evidence?

If they believe that they ought to act because it is morally right even though their action is prohibited by law, who am I to tell them otherwise? But I will ask you this: if I were to do something illegal, who should decide whether or not I should be punished? Me? You? What authority?

@Chaise Guevara
Erm, I think you have just shot yourself in the foot!
”…Focus too much on validity and you end up with a situation where nobody’s allowed to disagree with anyone else because it’s interpreted as oppressing them”.
But then you’d said ….” but his assessment of the situation is dead wrong”.
Surely that is the same? You are character assassinating Anthony to further your own view and that’s not fair. He has very valid or, correct points that he backs up with evidence.
Where did Anthony put ….” and as he’s happy to post content-free insults and accuses people who disagree with him of being fascists who are working for the man”.? I couldn’t find that quote.
This blog is very interesting and certainly opening up a healthy debate of opinions. I’m intrigued to read more as it continues.
I hope Anthony comes back on. He creates good debate.

@ukliberty
Herein we see the problem. Who and what is a correct ‘law’? Who stands to benefit from the creation of ‘laws’? Who are the privileged persons who write the ‘laws’ and, why should they always be obeyed?
I believe ‘laws’ are there to be broken and disobeyed if they are detrimental to society of or a minority of people in a negative way but, benefit others disproportionately, esp when those it benefits are of the wealthy higher ranking in influential privileged position.
An unemployed person being denied help and not even counted on the statistics who steals food or clothing, does right to balance out his/her unfortunate prison-like position when others would rather they were dead or incarcerated.
‘Law’ creations are merely rules that wealthy people manipulate to for their own purposes. One only has to look at MP expense fiddles and injustices to see this.
Repressive laws banning protests in Parliament Square is another.

Anthony,

Who and what is a correct ‘law’?

I don’t understand this question.

Who stands to benefit from the creation of ‘laws’?

1. It depends on what the specific law says.

2. Lawyers.

Who are the privileged persons who write the ‘laws’…

See this.

… why should they always be obeyed?

I didn’t say they should always be obeyed. What I said was, if you break the law you ought to prepare to face the consequences, no matter how in the right you think you are – the person breaking the law does not get to decide whether or not he is punished. Do you think he ought to be allowed to decide? I’ve got to tell you, I can see that process going wrong very quickly.

67. Chaise Guevara

@ 64

“Erm, I think you have just shot yourself in the foot!”

Think again.

“But then you’d said ….” but his assessment of the situation is dead wrong”.
Surely that is the same? You are character assassinating Anthony to further your own view and that’s not fair.”

Excuse me, but saying someone is wrong is not character assassination. It is expressing my opinion. Or are you saying I don’t have the right to express my opinion because Anthony disagrees? Why is he allowed to express his opinion when other people disagree, then? Why don’t you accuse him of character assassination for the same reasons?

“He has very valid or, correct points that he backs up with evidence.”

Please direct me to his evidence that we live in a dictatorship.

“Where did Anthony put ….” and as he’s happy to post content-free insults and accuses people who disagree with him of being fascists who are working for the man”.? I couldn’t find that quote.”

See 10: some things he attacks UKLiberty (a liberal) with:

“you are an antagonistic person defending repressive regime policies”

“probably an active or ex Police, MP, etc.”

“your blinkered opinion””

“you clearly need to come out of your cocooned brainwashed box”

@65

The definition of ‘justice’, ‘fairness’ and the ‘laws’ that fall from that is, one would agree a complex issue. This: http://www.annaraccoon.com/politics/what-is-justice/ may be of interest in terms of how british justice has evolved, which was written following the series running on beeb 4 at the mo – well worth a look.

Though there are aspects of british society that many find deeply unfair, can you really equate this to some kind of police state ? The evidence base does seem rather weak, looking objectively.

If you are really confident that this is the case, and have visited some of said states (Burma, NK for example) coudl you provide some more objective analysis to support your view ? Otherwise, there’s a danger you’ll just look paranoid and possibly a little disproportionate…

@ukliberty
Come on, you know exactly what I mean by ”what is a correct law”.
If I imposed a law that say ‘A person will be deemed to be guilty of a crime if he/she smiles at HRH Queen Elizabeth Regina II”. You would no doubt agree that to absurd but, If it then said ‘ A person will be deemed to be guilty of a crime if he/she laughs at HRH Queen Elizabeth Regina II’. It becomes a little more ambiguous and open to different interpretations as to what’s deemed as laughing and, more over, why should such a ‘law’ be accepted anyway.
A more realistic situation that is open to challenge and proves without doubt just what a dictatorial repressive regime the UK is, is the BBC TV licence. Now that’s an enforced law on people whether they choose to want to view the BBC or not. A law enforced with menaces from the UK regime. A law that should be challenged by the masses that’d fail as a result of those in influential positions protecting the revenue raised from such an dictatorial imposition for propaganda government purposes.
You seem to sympathise/accept that ‘laws’ are just ‘laws’ for the sake of being so?

71. Chaise Guevara

Oh my God, he finally came up with “evidence” that we live in a dictatorship and it’s the fucking TV license.

@Chaise Guevara
Stop swearing ‘ya Scratter.

73. Chaise Guevara

No.

@Chaise Guevara
How very narrow and selective you are being. I mention one very serious example of the dictatorial UK imposition ‘laws’ and you try to jump on it point score! Grow up. Look and question what I’m pointing out, if you can mange to think outside the box for a moment and you may just see a glimmer of what I am saying.

Anthony, do you accept that there must be rules that say what we are not allowed to do?

If we accept that there must be ‘rules’ (or laws) in say what people are not allowed to do then,

1. there must be a process by which those laws are drafted, scrutinised, amended, and passed on to the statute book (so that they take effect and people can find out what the rules are);

2. there must be a process by which someone accused of breaking the law is held to account.

Now, it seems to me the least worse system for (1) is democracy and we live in one of those – it has its flaws but we’re pretty fortunate to live in it. And it seems to me the least worse system for (2) is having a jury trial.

Do you have any better suggestions?

You seem to sympathise/accept that ‘laws’ are just ‘laws’ for the sake of being so?

I don’t understand this question – I’ve criticised a lot of laws in various ‘venues’. Not being funny or intentionally condescending but do you understand how the criminal justice system works in this country? Just because something is made illegal doesn’t mean the person committing the offence automatically goes to jail.

You haven’t answered my question about who should decide what happens to someone who breaks a law.

Anthony,

A more realistic situation that is open to challenge and proves without doubt just what a dictatorial repressive regime the UK is, is the BBC TV licence.

Are you serious?

Because I imagine people in genuinely repressive states would say to you, “what the hell are you smoking?” (or something to that effect, possibly with more expletives)

I think readers of your comments can be forgiven for thinking you have things somewhat out of proportion.

I thought you were going to mention control orders, say. And even those, which are illberal in a number of ways, can be quashed by the courts – the Home Secretary and security services told to think again – and the controlees allowed to seek costs and damages. Some police state!

Yes it takes a long while to get to that point. No, control orders shouldn’t exist in the first place. But a genuine police state wouldn’t bother with any of that – it wouldn’t allow fair hearings, it might not even bother with hearings, and it would indefinitely detain people or simply kill them.

Again, using words and phrases like “dictatorship” and “repressive regime” and “police state” trivialises the problems people experience in places that actually are repressive. There’s some of that going on today in Egypt?

@ukliberty
Of course I believe there has to be a rule of law. But, that rule of ‘law’ should not be biased in favour of certain segments of society, esp. those in privileged positions or wealthy individuals and corporations, etc. Nor open to manipulations.

…”1. there must be a process by which those laws are drafted, scrutinised, amended, and passed on to the statute book (so that they take effect and people can find out what the rules are”.
The process by which ‘laws’ are forged is the problem. It’s open to manipulations, esp. for political and repressive/suppressive purposes. The ‘statute book’ is not a stone tablet even though people seem to accept it is. The Statute Book is merely a record, simple as.
…” there must be a process by which someone accused of breaking the law is held to account”.
Well of course there must but, yet again, it’s all down to what that so called ‘law’ is and how it was forged. Like I said, certain manipulated ‘laws’ need breaking and disobeying in order to get them abolished or amended.

….”Now, it seems to me the least worse system for (1) is democracy and we live in one of those – it has its flaws but we’re pretty fortunate to live in it. And it seems to me the least worse system for (2) is having a jury trial.
Do you have any better suggestions?”
To coin your phrase ”it has flaws but” kind of says it all. Let’s belittle them minor insignificant flaws eh?! Under little peaks of icebergs lurk the real monsters! A Democracy is suppose to be a society of free speech and choices but, these have fast been eroded in the UK and yet the word Democracy still gets bandied around!
As far as a Jury is concerned, here again there are many problems of injustice. Previous ‘form’ may be considered and stereotypical aesthetics and age play a part in the eventual sentence. Also, have you never heard of the ‘Halo Effect’? It’s where the Jury is swayed by how pretty/good looking the defendant is. It distorts their judgement in favour of lenient sentencing as a result of sexual desires.

…”just because something is made illegal doesn’t mean the person committing the offence automatically goes to jail”.
There should never be ambiguity over whether the law applies different from one person to another, unless previous form or warnings have been accrued and taken into account in sentencing.

…”You haven’t answered my question about who should decide what happens to someone who breaks a law”.
In answering this question we have to determine that that particular ‘law’ is fair and non biased and not being used or created for political or repressive purposes.
If after establishing this to a satisfactory but, open minded agreement then, yes, there has to be in place a court ‘law’ applicators with the intention of keeping aware of the affect on the said persons holistic effects both in the short term and long term, in sentencing. Also, other considerations like health, family, finance, Prison population and reputation of the judiciary.

The only time the tory trolls got their knickers in a twist about a police state was when their spokesman on immigration got held in a police station for 9 hours without charge. Then they all ran around shouting “police state, police state.”

As long as the police are breaking heads of lefties, and killing brown people they have no problem.

Boy am I glad I said I wasn’t doing wrestles 🙂

Technically, Anthony is write that photogs have been held for days under anti-terror laws; e.g., remember the “manhole-cover photographer who was held anyway for several days when his phone was searched for compromising pictures of welded-shut manholes (Lab conf security) and there weren’t any.

http://boingboing.net/2009/03/03/manchester-man-arres.html

He has some other points, too.

Judging by some of his stuff though (UK = North Korea ROFL), he’s spending part of his time in a opium dream. Perhaps he’s one of the Cuba Solidarity mob.

.

80. Baying Lynch Mob

“[…]the BBC TV licence. Now that’s an enforced law on
people whether they choose to want to view the BBC or not.
A law enforced with menaces from the UK regime. A law that
should be challenged by the masses[…]”

I haven’t paid it since 1998, and they still haven’t locked me up. Come, join the revolution.

@65 Anthony: “An unemployed person being denied help and not even counted on the statistics who steals food or clothing…”

Following the disintegration of the Soviet Union, many Russian ships were stranded without money for supplies near UK ports. In Lerwick, one sailor committed a minor theft to raise some money. The magistrates (one was a family friend) gave him a conditional discharge, which upheld the principle of law but did not criminalise the poor man. They then organised a fund to support the stranded sailors so that no further offences were committed.

Similar decisions are made daily in UK courts to avoid criminalising offenders who need help and are not habitual criminals.

At the political level, public interest was removed as a defence for breach of the Official Secrets Act in 1990. However, this has not ended public interest OSA leaks and there have been significant prosecution failures (Derek Pasquill, Katherine Gun). The OSA remains an illiberal law, but it is not evidence of a police state or of collapse of an independent judiciary.

Phew; seems like Anthony is going to long way round to saying that civil disobediance is sometimes necessary which is what Thoreau, I believe, said hundreds of years ago. (and peeps before him I daresay)

I don’t think anyone here disagrees with that to be honest.

~

@55 Miller

“I disagree on the kids being arrested. They probably didn’t know how to block their IP addresses. They are still brave heroes as far as I’m concerned. And yes, DDoS attacks should not be illegal. There are programmes that prevent them anyway. These kids being arrested is all part and parcel of what Anthony raised earlier about Britain & the US ‘dictatorship regimes’. I’m inclined to agree as I see it happening every day.”

Um, just because someone doesn’t know how to block their IP address it doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be arrested… not sure if that’s what you’re saying but it reads like it. I mean a burgler might not know that his fingerprints will lead to him being caught, doesn’t mean that he shouldn’t be arrested!
“Brave heroes” – nahh, just some bored kids who spend too much time hanging out on 4chan etc & what once was an amusing anti-Scientology movement (Anonymous) has now entered the wider world and yup there are consequences to actions, as some will find out – again, I’m not condemning them, but they need to wake up to the real world if they want to take part in civil disobediance. When climate change protesters break into a power station they know they run the risk of arrest, charge, trial, and imprisonment. Yet they do it anyway – and good for them.
I think if DDoS attacks weren’t illegal it would be incredibally easy for political opponents of whatever hue to use them to force sites offline. eg the EDL vs UAF, to use an extreme example. Although saying that they remain a pretty ineffective tactic – the old-fashioned boycott is much more effective frankly, but it requires a lot more effort than point-click-download-run-leave-running-overnight… which is all these attacks are. An awareness campaign – a la South Africa in the ’80s – leading to boycotting of certain products reaps more rewards in the long run, as a DDoS attack is normally recovered from after a few days or less.
If we lived in a dictatorship these kids wouldn’t be arrested. They’d be shot.

There’s a difference.

@ukliberty
Please don’t try to trivialise the imposition of a dictatorial propaganda BBC TV licence enforcement, by the UK government regime.
I’m not sure what your litmus test is, or what yardstick you use to the point at which a country is, or is not, a totalitarian dictatorship. But let me tell ‘ya now, it’s made up of different repressive laws and, evolves over time as a result of no one having the balls to challenge ’em and defy them. This is more difficult in the UK because the government have honed and perfected the art of ‘divide & conquer’ and, control most of the media.
Did you take a read of this by a previous poster?:
http://www.latentexistence.me.uk/do-we-live-in-a-police-state-short-version/
It’s very interesting indeed. I go further of course and state the UK is already a Police State.
With computer simulation programmes of mass rioting in the UK being tested out, the government already have in place further repressive measures just like that other regime going on today in Egypt:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2011/jan/27/hugh-orde-police-protest-tactics
However people look at the situation, there is civil unrest and hate festering over vast countries of the world and, it’s all down to unregulated predatory capitalism and corrupt governments, corporations and wealthy individuals. 90% of the wealth is now dominated by 5% of the UK population and so called Western ‘democracies’. This surely spells future civil unrest and government overthrow.
To see the wealthy scum removed from ruining our country can not some a day too soon. No more light touch governance in favour of the elite and wealthy and, a redistribution and equality of resources to ALL British citizens.

@Mr S.Pill
You make some interesting opinions on that last reply, that I am digesting and I hadn’t considered.

@83 Anthony: “However people look at the situation, there is civil unrest and hate festering over vast countries of the world and, it’s all down to unregulated predatory capitalism and corrupt governments, corporations and wealthy individuals.”

In the UK, we have the BNP and similar organisations using dissatisfaction to promote race hatred. Across the world, religious extremists attack secular, liberal governments. These facts have little or nothing to do with capitalism.

Anthony,

Please don’t try to trivialise the imposition of a dictatorial propaganda BBC TV licence enforcement, by the UK government regime.

What, the one voted for by Parliament that you aren’t obliged to have?

Some police state.

…”just because something is made illegal doesn’t mean the person committing the offence automatically goes to jail”.
There should never be ambiguity over whether the law applies different from one person to another, unless previous form or warnings have been accrued and taken into account in sentencing.

That sounds a bit totalitarian to me.

…”You haven’t answered my question about who should decide what happens to someone who breaks a law”.
In answering this question we have to determine that that particular ‘law’ is fair and non biased and not being used or created for political or repressive purposes.

Who determines that? What is the process?

87. Chaise Guevara

@ 74

“I mention one very serious example of the dictatorial UK imposition ‘laws’ and you try to jump on it point score!”

What serious example of dictatorial law? I must have been distracted by you talking about the TV license.

“Grow up. Look and question what I’m pointing out, if you can mange to think outside the box for a moment and you may just see a glimmer of what I am saying.”

Yes, matching your intellectual level is certainly tricky. I still think inside the box so much that I think two and two add up to four.

Seriously, it’s fucking hilarious how you crazy conspiracy theorist types always think that everyone would believe you if they were just more intelligent and informed, rather than realising that nobody agrees with you because you’re talking nonsense and your presence is an irritation and embrassassment to everyone else around.

@Anthony
I’ve managed to spend a little time catching up on this blog. I must say to you that I would not engage in any conversations with Chaise Guevara. That person is clearly trying to dominate this blog and trying to downgrade your opinions.
@Chaise Guevara
The tone of your reply to Anthony does not make for good debate on here. You should reassess your replies and try to make them more conducive to a good discussion or leave this blog.

@Charlieman
”These facts have little or nothing to do with capitalism”
I don’t agree with your reply to @Anthony regarding Capitalism. Free market economics underpinned by capitalism does produce inequality. It’s also the case that religious orders and other systems have detrimental affects of countries.
Its evident by what we are seeing in Britain today that protests are indicative of bitter resentments.
No matter what I hear about the UK GDP or other economical forecasts it’s apparent there are millions in debt and suffering as a result of incompetent governance.
I whole heartedly agree with @Anthony sentiment and enlightenment to the serious issues facing our country and peoples.

90. Chaise Guevara

88 Miller

“The tone of your reply to Anthony does not make for good debate on here. You should reassess your replies and try to make them more conducive to a good discussion or leave this blog.”

I’ll go where I like, thanks.

OK, I shouldn’t have written the final paragraph of my last post. I’m generally more reasonable than this, but I’m simply fed up with Anthony’s attitude. How can I have a “good discussion” with someone who redefines “dictatorship” to the point where it includes a liberal democracy? How can I speak sensibly to someone who acts as if just disagreeing with him makes you an idiot and a fascist?

Furthermore, at your request, I gave you some examples of the poor behaviour by Anthony (comment 67). I find it interesting that you have nothing to say about that… do you only care about the etiquette of people who disagree with you?

As for me trying to “downgrade” his opinions… how does that work, exactly? How do I downgrade his opinions simply by expressing my own? The only way I can think of is by slandering him, which I’m not doing.

Frankly, I suspect that Anthony is a troll, and given that your role on here seems to be blindly supporting him and little else, I also think you might be a sock puppet. Apologies if you’re not, because I know that sort of accusation gets thrown around too much on the internet and I generally try not to do it, but you are giving that impression. You’re backing someone who literally doesn’t make sense, and you’re turning a blind eye to their poor etiquette while attacking mine, which was at least provoked.

He is probably right about the burglary aspect:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burglary_in_English_law#.22As_a_trespasser.22

I agree ACPO is unaccountable and out of control though.


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  3. Steve Sumpter

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  4. Jamie Potter

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