Life in Labour England, number 45484899

There is little to say about this, other than the fact that the police are arresting people, who quite reasonably are going about their business and wish to assert their legal rights.
My son is a documentary film maker. He is clever enough to avoid trouble, hence his smart decision not to film his detention by Maoist separatists in Nepal, or indeed, to take his camera out of the bag. I just wonder when I am going to get a phone call telling me he has been arrested for doing his job, in a British town centre, in broad daylight.

Here is a video of an encounter with City of London Police. I was shaking with anger and also,fear, when I saw this:

These policemen, whoever they were, were more interested in macho posturing than maintaining the security of our country. They don't like to be recorded either, because then, they cannot fit you up. Bastards.


Richard said...

I'm a bit 50/50 on this one. As far as I could see, the police behaved quite reasonably and calmly, and within their powers (whether those powers are right is another matter). The security guards, as you might expect, were jumped-up arses who like intimidating people, but I thought the police were professional and polite. Put it another way - if there are indeed terrorists in London doing recces for possible attacks, filming iconic buildings and their entrances, exits and security camera locations (and I would assume that this happens), then what should we be doing about it? Merely asking to see the footage to assure themselves that the filming is not suspicious is not an unreasonable response.

I'm not in favour of the 'show us your peppersssss' approach of a police state, but given that there is a terrorist threat, however exaggerated and manipulated by the Govt, what you would you have the police do?

Spartan said...

'Richard' ... you seem to forget that suicide bombers have no need to recce targets as they have no intention of escaping.

Neither does it matter if the are stopped before their intended target ... they will still choose martyrdom.

Public buildings are and always will be vulnerable to anyform of attack by their very nature of being public. You can do nothing about it ... period.

What would l want the police to do? ... easy, be policemen instead of assuming that they are in a Hollywood movie and they are 007, Bourne or whatever.

May l also bring it to your attention that technology is far more advanced than hand held digital cameras. l have in my possession a camera that doubles as a button on a shirt/jacket or any other form of clothing. lt is high definition with sound and is solidstate (no moving parts). The control unit is 1.5" square with an LCD screen and has a remote control if wanted that is 1" square. l can take 4hrs of movies (not pics) on it.

l got it for under £100. Now assuming that all terrorists are not complete imbeciles and for some strange reason actually want to take pics and not attract attention ... would they go to Asda and buy a normal camera or buy a covert one from somewhere else?

Spartan said...

One day l may feel so inclined to take my standard camera and go and take pics where the chocolate policemen are. lt would be quite interesting as l have no address, no bank account/credit cards, no utility bills and no cars. l haven't worked in this country for years and neither have l ever claimed any benefits so there is no current record of me with Inland Revenue or the Benefits Agencies. l also have no criminal record and the last time l was in a hospital or doctors was when l was 14 (40 odd years ago) when l broke my ankle.

l live abroad most of the time but come and go as l please.

No doubt if l was stopped and then arrested through non co-operation it would become interesting to say the least ... or maybe l should utter Capt Scotts immortal words "I am just going outside and may be some time." before l set off on this venture? ;-)

Spartan said...

p.s. must remember to take my shemagh.

Richard said...

As I said, I am 50/50 about it. From a strictly pragmatic viewpoint, of course if someone is going blow up a building they will do it, and no amount of CCTV and intrusive policing will stop them. But let's say a bomb is placed in the London Gherkin and brings it down, a la Twin Towers. Can you imagine the howls of outrage from the blogosphere when the police reveal in the aftermath that "we didn't do anything about the people filming the main entrance two days before because there didn't seem to be any point"?

Let's revisit the whole security theatre thing and take another look at the 'terrorist threat' at policy level by all means, but in this case I think what you see is a couple of decent plod treating a lefty journalist with a degree of humour and patience.

And no need for the scare quotes around 'Richard', as it is my name.

Spartan said...

Scare quotes? ... l have no idea what you mean.

No, l don't see a couple of decent plod and neither do l see a lefty journalist.

The only humour (if any) that plod possess is invoking section two of the Violent Crime Reduction Act against the photographer to give his name and address when the initial approach of using Sect 44 was dropped. That piece of law (Sect 2 Violent Crime Reduction Act) relates to the “Duration of drinking banning orders”??? ...though l doubt photographer saw the humour.

l state again that pics are not needed for any sort of recce when dealing with suicide bombers and even if for some reason they actually wanted pics they would use covert means readily available.

Justification of harrassment of public using cameras in town centres etc is completely irrational and illogical.

Richard said...


"Scare quotes? ... l have no idea what you mean."

Quotation marks used around a term, often sarcastically, to indicate that it is not being used with its conventional meaning, such as a reference to homoeopathic "science". Using it around someone's name indictates that you consider that it is not their real name, a bit like adding "so-called". Richard is my real name, that's all.

Spartan said...

No sarcasm implied or intended, simply my way. One learns someting new. ;-)

Richard said...

And none taken, I assure you.


Jim Baxter said...

Thems was Captain Oates's words. Man deserves for words like them to be attributed right.

Spartan said...

You are correct sir ... my apologies for the mistake.

Mrs Rigby said...

Odd that photographers were never targetted when the IRA were at their worst, and that was the days before Google Earth too