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"I've seen the future, brother, it is murder"

(Quote care of Leonard Cohen)

The BBC site has the frankly terrifying news that the apparat are intent on filling our cities with CCTV cameras that will talk to those 'behaving anti-socially', and they will be voiced by schoolchildren.

Supposedly they will be aimed at drunks, litterers etc etc, but if Reid gets away with this (and dear God, I hope he does not) further notches on the road to serfdom *will* include berating us for eating unhealthy food, being overweight, staying out too late on a school night, whistling tunelessly - you name it. And Reid also used that vile neologism 'disrespected' in his attempted justification of this - even by his standards - truly monstrous assault on basic liberty. If a crime is being committed, arrest the offender, but the attempt to compel the populace to be 'virtuous' through the vehicle of squeaky voiced cameras is beyond Stalinist.

I will offer the last word to Proudhon:

"To be GOVERNED is to be watched, inspected, spied upon, directed, law-driven, numbered, regulated, enrolled, indoctrinated, preached at, controlled, checked, estimated, valued, censured, commanded, by creatures who have neither the right nor the wisdom nor the virtue to do so. To be GOVERNED is to be at every operation, at every transaction noted, registered, counted, taxed, stamped, measured, numbered, assessed, licensed, authorized, admonished, prevented, forbidden, reformed, corrected, punished. It is, under pretext of public utility, and in the name of the general interest, to be placed under contribution, drilled, fleeced, exploited, monopolized, extorted from, squeezed, hoaxed, robbed; then at the slightest resistance, the first word of complaint, to be repressed, fined, vilified, harassed, hunted down, abused, clubbed, disarmed, bound, choked, imprisoned, judged, condemned, shot, deported, sacrificed, sold, betrayed, and to crown all, mocked, ridiculed, derided, outraged, dishonoured. That is government; that is its justice; that is its morality."

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Anonymous nomad said... 11:38 am

I caught this item about M'boro on the BBC TV overseas service last night and my first thought was what on earth has become of the UK. The film clip showed a kid (doing no harm) riding his bike on a bench in a deserted shopping mall, and another strewing paper all over the place. The former was told to get off and the latter to pick it up and put it in the "bin located behind the telehone boxes". Interestingly, they both complied and went off waving and smiling at the camera!

After thinking a bit about these cameras I still remain ambivalent. One the one hand they do indeed invade people's privacy, but on the other they proved vital in tracking and identifying the tube bombers from way out in the sticks into London and on to the underground. So they do have an up-side. Where is the balance to be found? I think we (or rather you!) are going to be stuck with this official voyeurism, which is merely an extension of what has been happening in department stores for years already. Once people get used to seeing them around the place, they will carry on as they do now and simply ignore them and go about their business. If some folks will feel more confident going about, especially after dark, knowing that somebody is watching their back, then that can only be a good thing.

I wonder if those who put up or own the cameras pay rent to those whose walls they affix them to? If wall owners kick up a fuss or decide to charge a few £000s annually for their rent maybe over enthusiasm may be curtailed.

Reaping what was sown, I think this decline in general behaviour can probably be traced back to the day the bleeding hearts got their way in ensuring that teachers and others in authority can no longer punish wrongdoers with a swift kick up the backside or a clip round the ear.  



Blogger kris said... 11:40 am

It's bad enough (the implications of what is proposed by the good "doctor"...

but imagine the ignominy of a response of "bollocks to ya", "piss off" recorded on CCTV for posterity...

Hey! I've just come up with a spin-off to "worlds Wildest Police Videos"!  



Anonymous nick drew said... 1:26 pm

Proudhon on Croydonian, Nietzsche on the Hitch ... adversity is bringing out the best in the bloggers

now if Mr mania were not maintaining radio silence he could give us a blast of Blake  



Anonymous this guy said... 1:35 pm

I wdn't worry about it. The idea is labour intensive. Mr Blair is always coming up with labour intensive gimmicks, then when one of his wonks explains to him about a thing called "money", he loses interest.

I'm quite encouraged that already some people are pointing out that more home births will need more midwives, who also need this thing called "m-o-n-e-y".  



Anonymous verity said... 1:36 pm

Not only nightmareish in and of itself, but I find it interesting that they are introducing children as authority figures over adults.

This should be stopped forthwith, because in Britain, you have now reached the endgame.  



Blogger The Hitch said... 2:01 pm

Nightmarish indeed
Does anybody really think that some scrote could care less if a disembodied voice told him to pick up a piece of litter, or indeed to refrain from stabbing somebody?
No!
It isn't aimed at criminals it is aimed us, to condition us.
Frankly I am beginning to wish that I lived in Iran.
And tommorow The Hitch advances to contact with the revenue.  



Blogger The Hitch said... 2:05 pm

Nightmarish indeed
Does anybody really think that some scrote could care less if a disembodied voice told him to pick up a piece of litter, or indeed to refrain from stabbing somebody?
No!
It isn't aimed at criminals it is aimed us, to condition us.
Frankly I am beginning to wish that I lived in Iran.
And tommorow The Hitch advances to contact with the revenue.  



Blogger Croydonian said... 2:59 pm

I foresee much vandalising of camera poles....  



Anonymous Anonymous said... 3:19 pm

ND@1.26
Unaware of the blog-debut of Proudhon and Nietzsche I just put Mansfield Park on Iain Dale - there is a discussion of the social (and physical) degeneration of Portsmouth, which Austen portrays better than any (as she does).

Then,thinking over today's social ills, I've wasted (well, spent) half the afternoon looking at her work, and at what she has to say about them. Fanny Price's mum as the eternal chav is prescient.  



Anonymous hg said... 3:20 pm

Anon@3.19 is me, sorry.  



Anonymous hg said... 3:44 pm

I'll be quiet now, but Kant has just made a bow on Dale.  



Blogger Croydonian said... 3:47 pm

Der kategorischer Imperativ, or somesuch?  



Anonymous nick drew said... 4:50 pm

HG, thanks for the two tips, what a splendid day for the blogosphere, most uplifting  



Blogger Lilith said... 6:12 pm

Roland Barthes got a mention too! Thanks for dropping by Mr C...I dont really have a raison d'etre for my blog so it may just disappear up its own fundament at some point or other, but for now it's fun :-)  



Blogger Newmania said... 8:53 pm

Imentioned Roland Barthes recently in what was admittedly a desperate tactic to deny T Boy ownership of Gerge Orwell . I`m, not so impressed with German Philosophers

Sean Gabb( On Arthurian )

"German philosophy is notoriously a learned gibberish. For nearly two centuries, it has been used to justify every imaginable lapse from humanity and common sense."


I did notice HG`s Mansfield Park...I love Jane Austen and the fact that HG does adds to my growing suspicion that she may be perfect.  



Anonymous nick drew said... 9:49 pm

Gabb by name ...

No dissing those german thinkers mania, they have taught us to Think Deeply  



Blogger Croydonian said... 10:58 pm

Fair to say that the German philosophers tend not to pepper their works with one liners, but pretty good on rigour (like I'm in any position to judge). If we broaden it out to political philosophy and economics, that also allows in Hayek, Von Mises and Karl Popper.

Lilith - My pleasure, although your first post was a bit alarming.  



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