Gun control backfires in England

Discussion in 'The Pub' started by Netfotoj, Feb 19, 2007.

  1. Netfotoj

    Netfotoj Premium Member

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    Believe or not, as Ripley says, our favorite newspaper, the London Telegraph (famed source of the "unconfirmed reports" of Steyr sniper rifles in Iraq) has a story on how strict gun-control laws have backfired in jolly old London town.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2007/02/16/dl1601.xml

     
  2. mikey

    mikey Guest

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    Indeed . . . but did you see the Telegraph's suggested solution?

    "The truth is that the laws relating to possession of guns are nowhere near tough enough . . . Such piffling sanctions hardly amount to an effective deterrent to these young hoodlums."

    Add to that their suggestion that "the ludicrous inhibitions placed on the police when it comes to exercising powers of stop and search have to be lifted."

    Sounds like Jolly Old England is heading right down Police State Alley. :(
     

  3. Seven

    Seven Premium Member

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    They've already got the highest concentration of surveillance cameras in the world, and are restricting the sale and possession of *pointed knives* over a certain size.

    *sigh* And I really love to vacation in Wales... :cry:

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  4. MrApathy

    MrApathy Active Member

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    all they need is a remote controlled ADS system at every camera station anybody getting out of hand and just microwave them into a corner till the bootthugs can respond its for there safety of coarse

    dont know what ADS is check my thread on it
     
  5. bigtaco

    bigtaco Active Member

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    i'm just going to relay the rumor i heard about england... but i didn't actually see this in print from a reputable source.

    that being said, i heard...

    that a bill was introduced before parliament to retrofit EVERY vehicle in the kingdom with a gps unit. the govt super computer would compare your driving speed with the posted speed limit for that area and automatically mail you your speeding ticket.

    it was (apparently) immediately shot down (i mean struck down) but... that legislation like that could ever... EVER even get introduced speaks volumes of their attitudes towards civil liberties.

    hey, hey... i'll give up my freedom for security, and get neither.
     
  6. MrApathy

    MrApathy Active Member

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    similar legistlation was proposed in the states
    they also wanted to tax every mile of road people drove on.
     
  7. English

    English New Member

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    I'll try to answer the above posts in one go.

    There is a major confusion between two different categories of gun laws. The various acts which took away our rights to, first handgun ownership, and second self defence with a weapon, and third self defence full stop have contributed, I believe, enormously to our growth of crime. To be fair and honest, the prohibition on the ownership of handguns in 97-98 post the Dunblane massacre did nothing to change this because by then the only handguns in legal possesion were licensed only for target use. Self defence use of handguns had effectively been prohibited since some time in the 50s. These laws, of course, had no effect on criminals who, according to some police estimates, had up to 20 times as many handguns available to them as were owned legally. I doubt the ratio was as high but we can be fairly sure of the direction of the statistics.

    I say that I believe these laws had a mjor detrimental effect because there are many liberals, many of whome are lawyers, who believe that the rise in crime has been driven by other factors and is nothing to do with rights to self defence. I will say no more because I know I would be preaching to the choir.

    The laws that the Telegraph was talking about were the laws directed at criminal ownership of handguns. That is, the legal penalties for such criminal ownership. Blair recently claimed that he was going to make these a lot tougher. In fact he had forgatten that he had already done so some four years ago but that this had led to no more detection or conviction than before. Blair believes that if he says something the people will believe it and will forget the previous legislation and that not enough to matter will read the newspaper explanations of the reality.

    The legislation to force GPS surveilance on all vehicles, at a capital cost of up to $1200 per vehicle is well on its way. It has not been struck down. There is a petition against the proposals with 1.5 million signatures which was growing at over 100,000 signatures a day before the government closed it down. The government say that it will make no difference because SOMETHING MUST BE DONE to reduce congestion on the roads. Strangely enough, much of the congestion on the roads has been caused by traffic calming measures which the government has introduced to make the roads safer. Even more strange is that they cannot show valid statistics to shoe that these methods have done anymore than produce a lot mor greenhouse gasses and wasted time.

    The precise form of this scheme is yet to be decided but the most advanced form will be able to detect which lane of a carriageway you are driving on and your speed. It will issue speeding tickets automatically. It might just be that this proposal will be the final one which will bring the government down but since the opposition is just about as stupid that might make no difference. Since this scheme will take huge amounts of computer power and advanced programming it might never work. A similar sceme in Germany is way over budget.

    The stated idea of this is that you can be charged a variable amount of tax per mile depending on the time of day and the road you are using. The installation cost is astronomical and it will depend on the Gallileo satelite system which is a joint EU and Chinese project so that "we" are not dependent on US GPS technology which you could turn off if we go to war with you or something. The reality is that this would move us even closer to the police state thet the EU is set up to be. This system will be combined with face recognition and number plate recognition cameras in all filling stations. They claim that this would let the police catch the 20 to 25% of people who do not pay road tax for their vehicles. It would let them catch known terrorisits more easily but above all it would take us still closer to the police state that the EU was always intended to be.

    The pointed knives thing is something I have not actually heard of but there is already a limit of 3.5 inches on the blade length but more important than that is that the police have the poweer to declare anything which they deem a dangerous weapon to be a dangerous weapon. Dangerous weapons, in case you are not ahead of me here, are against the law. This goes along whith their power to declare any assault to be racially motivated which anyone says they think was racially motivated.

    Take care. A government like this could be coming to you in the near future.

    English
     
  8. squirrelpotpie

    squirrelpotpie Premium Member

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  9. MrApathy

    MrApathy Active Member

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    curious English whats your thought on mandatory RFID implants?
     
  10. English

    English New Member

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    I don't think RFID implants are going to happen in the near future. Fitting one would be an invasive medical procedure for no theraputic benefit and the medical profession would resist that very strongly. Not as strongly as administering a lethal injection to a murderer perhaps, but still a very strong resistance.

    Despite that, it could happen if things get bad enough. A majority can be persuaded to support all sorts of stupid ideas if they can be frightened enough. Our constitution is no protection from anything - it all depends on votes in Parliament and they can be pressured by the Government if it has a big enough majority. Fortunately, at long last, it does look as though we will loose our socialist government and gain a Conservative one which will not be quite as socialist but will be less likely to do things which are so much contrary to the principle of liberty.

    As an example of the extent to which government is responsive to public opinion, we have just had what I think is the largest petition ever signed in this country demanding an end to the road pricing scheme and consequent surveillance system. It has been rejected out of hand today by Tony Blair. As always you have to ask whether he, like so many others, is stupid or whether he has a hidden agenda which he wishes to push through even though he is about to leave office.

    English
     
  11. BulletBait

    BulletBait New Member

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    A politician's true colors always come out when he no longer has to face the voters.
     
  12. BulletBait

    BulletBait New Member

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  13. Netfotoj

    Netfotoj Premium Member

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    Thanks for the wisdom, English.

    I've learned more about what's really going on over in the "mother country" from reading your posts than I have in reams of "news" reports.

    One question. Who's the new leader likely to be following Blair?

    Please tell me there's another Maggie Thatcher on the horizon. I haven't agreed with everything Blair has done, but he has been a friend to America.

    And God knows, friends to the U.S. are getting pretty thin on the ground, these days. Can't think of too many others than Great Britain right now.

    You said it looks like the Conservative Party may return to power. Who will be at the helm, should that happy event come to pass? Shows you how uninformed this Yank is, I don't even know who's their party leader.
     
  14. English

    English New Member

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    Netfotoj,
    The next Prime Minister will almost certainly be Gordon Brown, who is the present Chancellor of the Exchequer - that is, the political head of the Treasury. Unlike your system, it is the leader of the winning party who becomes Prime Minister as there are no Presidential elections. The consequence is that the Prime Minister can change in mid term.

    Back in 96 or 97 Blair and Brown were the two main contenders for the leadership of the Labour Party and at a famous or infamous meeting at a restaurant in Islington the two came to a deal. The deal as Brown seems to have understood it was that Blair would be left unopposed for the leadership by Brown in return for being made Chancellor with more freedom to make decisions than any Chancellor in British history and that Blair would then stand aside for Brown to be Leader and Prime Minister after a limited period. This was not how Blair understood the deal, at which no minutes were taken and he is still there. Blair is very good at making people believe that he is committing to something that he is not actually committing to. Brown and his supporters have been very bitter for a very long time.

    It is just possible that Brown is not elected Leader by the Labour Party and therefore does not become Prime Minister because polls are showing that he is distinctly unpopular and the Labour Members of Parliament fear for their jobs at the next General Election. The only problem is that the Labout Party no longer believes that it will be re-elected and so no one really wants to become Leader and PM for a year or two only to loose at the election and be damned there after. During the next term of Parliament the fiscally damaging policies that Brown has brough in should be taking hold with some strength. The country is already feeling the pinch which has been delayed this long for reasons I cannot go into here. The young ambitious pretenders prefer to take a chance on the following election with an unblemished record.

    The relatively new leader of the Conservative Party is David Cameron. He is ex Eton and Oxford so he should be clever enough. He is also an ex PR man so he should be devious enough. Unfortunately either his deviousness or his analysis of what is heeded to win has led him to promise that taxes will not be cut but that future prosperity will be shared between the people and better social provision. That is, there is little to choose between Blair and Cameron. If future prosperity is to be brought about we need tax cuts and a reduction of government for it to happen.

    Cameron, just like Blair, is good at statements of virtuous desire for a better and nicer country where there is less crime and better education and so on and on. He does not take the risk of declaring what policies will achieve these complex multiple results. But then, Blair came to power with precisely that strategy and a system that had gathered and then released the news of a variety of small scandals to smear the previous Conservative Government whenever there was a danger that the media would actually ask questions about policy. The media happily chased every one of these petty scandals like a dog chasing a bitch on heat.

    There is no sign at present of anyone who is prepared to say that things have to change to a radical extent. That the tax take has to be reduced and simplified. That the system of social benefits which make it more rational for many to be permanently unemployed rather than employed have to be stopped. More than half of the country's housholds are now dependent in part on payments from the state - this is democratically disastrous and must be stopped but we are now in the situation of asking turkeys to vote for Christmas. And so on. If there is anyone who might take on the Thatcher mantle they are keeping very quiet about it. Our only hope might be that Labour win the next election again and that the following social and economic collapse will drive out the government and create the circumstances where the voters will actually see that such changes have to be made.

    I seem to remember that one of the main advantages of constitutional democracy is that it allows the people to change the government without the cost of civil war. Socialism in this country has now become so embedded in the conciousness of the people that there are no large sized non socialist parties - they could not be elected if they were. The cost of escaping socialism for a relatively short time might be not far from the cost of civil war as it was when Thatcher came to power.

    From America, Blair looks good because you do not see his policies but see that he has supported America over Iraq. I cannot think of another worthwhile thing that Blair has done and he and Bush between them, with deeply religious motives and a naive belief in the way that democracy works, have managed to make a mess of the whole project.

    America has been deeply unpopular here and in Europe for a long time. The war in Iraq is now equally unpopular. Cameron is very careful about expressing any support he might feel for America and is unlikely to be the kind of friend that Blair has been.

    English
     
  15. MrApathy

    MrApathy Active Member

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    Thanks for the contribution of your post.

    situation here in US is similar. would take another Revolution though would be categorized as a civil war.

    The tree of liberty often needs refreshing with the blood of tyrans and patriots. -Thomas Jefferson after Shays rebellion
     
  16. Netfotoj

    Netfotoj Premium Member

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    English,

    Many thanks for your lengthy post. Sounds as if our "mother country" and her rebellious former colony are in much the same boat on the same issues.

    Here our election choices thus far for 2008 also have us still despairing of another Lady Thatcher or Reagan to appear. We also have far too many turkeys unwilling to vote for Christmas -- and too many hogs in the trough.
     
  17. Well we are facing similiar problems here in the United States with the introduction of a new more strict Assault Weapons Ban contained within House Bill 1022 submitted by Congresswoman McCarthy of New York. Right now the bill has no cosponsers, but the Judiciary Committe that it is infront of has more than enough votes from the Dems to pass it to the floor.

    We seem to be racing toward civil war here in this country.

    If the UK started requiring RFID implants I'm sure that would be the last straw. I mean how much of a policed state can you have? Cameras everywhere, GPS in your cars, and you're expected to use what? Harsh language when in fear for you life, but any self-defense and you wind up in prison????

    Insane.

    The world is going to hell in a hand basket.