"A wise and frugal government which shall restrain men
from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government."
(Thomas Jefferson)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

London's Burning while Law Enforcement Figures Out What to Do

BBC continues to call the rioters/thugs protesters to the chagrin of Brits:

A protester is a rebel with a cause. These youths in hoodies and men in bandanas are not fighting for a principle, they’re trashing neighbourhoods for a plasma telly and a pair of new trainers. Masked gangs are looting department stores, not waving placards. One woman described being on a bus that was set upon by angry rioters; someone else talked about Turkish men lining the street of their neighbourhood to protect their homes from looters: neither eyewitness seems to be describing a protest. 
To elevate the gangs’ inarticulate resentment to “protest” is not only a mistake, it is the creation of a dangerous urban myth. That myth sows doubts about police, fear of anyone young and black, and loathing of the lawless elements by fearful residents. 
Broadcasters from the BBC to Bloomberg can’t decide whether they want to attribute the mob’s motives to anger against the Coalition’s cuts or fury at the police killing of a father of four in Tottenham. But the testimonials tell a different story: violent gangs coming together in an orchestrated fashion to confront “the feds” and seize an opportunity to plunder.
The UK has some the toughest gun control laws in the world which goes right along with their liberal thinking. What we are seeing happen in London and other towns in Britain is one big reason why strict gun control does not work anywhere it is tried because the thugs, terrorists, and criminals always find a way to get their guns while honest people are left to fight with aluminum baseball bats which is a huge selling item right now on Amazon UK.  When as a Country, you don't arm your police, riots could can get out of control very fast as we are seeing from the thugs.  Now will the Brits turn water cannons on them or will they wimp out on that too?  Why not a few bullets aimed at their legs which would work much better?

Next summer London is scheduled to host the Olympics -- this is not a ringing endorsement for security for the Olympics since their law enforcement seems ill equipped to handle rioters and thugs.

London’s BurningAugust 9, 2011 3:10 P.M. By Iain Murray 
They say everything old is new again, and that is certainly true of the British riots. The main areas of outbreak — Tottenham, Brixton, Toxteth in Liverpool — were scenes of similar riots and disorder in the 1980s and early ’90s. To that extent, they show how 14 years of Labour-party rule merely papered over the cracks in British society. And yet there is something very different about them too. As Brendan O’Neill of Spiked says, these riots have a different focus:
Painting these riots as some kind of action replay of historic political streetfights against capitalist bosses or racist cops might allow armchair radicals to get their intellectual rocks off, as they lift their noses from dusty tomes about the Levellers or the Suffragettes and fantasise that a political upheaval of equal worth is now occurring outside their windows. But such shameless projection misses what is new and peculiar and deeply worrying about these riots. The political context is not the cuts agenda or racist policing – it is the welfare state, which, it is now clear, has nurtured a new generation that has absolutely no sense of community spirit or social solidarity.
Brendan concludes, I think rightly, that these criminal outbursts are a “riotous expression of carelessness for one’s own community,” and that they are not expressions of working-class anger (Brendan is a Marxist, but a libertarian one). Meanwhile, the fastest-selling items on Amazon.co.uk are batons and baseball bats, as people look to defend themselves and their property in the absence of an effective police. 
Another left-wing friend of mine in the UK has another interesting theory — that the particular targeting of electronics and clothes shops represents an explosion of consumerism. Stay with me, because I think he has a point and I’d like to explain why. Much of the British underclass has had easy access to credit over the past decade or so — and why not, when they are on a secure income stream of state benefits — and they have spent this for the most part on TVs, video games, and “chav” fashion. That easy credit — which I should emphasize was encouraged by the loose monetary policy of Gordon Brown and Tony Blair — has now dried up, so they are looking to take for free what they previously got for nominal sums. There is more evidence for that conclusion in this BBC recording of two girls saying that the riots were about taking what they wanted, for free. 
In all of this, my friend argues, “traditional working class values of thrift, self-help and neighbourhood have been replaced by a gesellschaft culture that turns all those traditional values on their head. Personal gain, self-interest and status are now the prime aspirations.” Again, I think he is right. The Left normally blames this on Margaret Thatcher, conveniently forgetting how often she exhorted exactly those values as the cornerstones of her belief and spoke about how (as Brendan demonstrates) they were under attack by the welfare state. Interestingly, as my friend noted, those values have been championed by the young urban (and predominantly leftist) middle class, who are literally sweeping the streets clean — so much so that the broom has become the unofficial symbol of resistance. 
In all of this I am reminded most strongly of Myron Magnet’s classic text The Dream And The Nightmare, in which he argues that the adoption of certain values by the upper classes in the 1960s wreaked havoc on the underclasses when they adopted them in turn. As this reviewer summarizes,
The principal core, dysfunctional values learned from the upper-middle class are unrestrained individualism and liberation from responsibilities. The liberal dream of the 1960s was that unrestrained individualism and a loosening of morals would lead to freer and better society. Instead of the “dream,” the 1990s turned into a “nightmare” for the underclass.
In other words, personal gain, self-obsession, and status — the philosophy of the libertine, rather than the libertarian.
Excerpt:  Read More at the National Review

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