This week The Guardian tries to shift our focus professionally away from the crisis of national security and surveillance (very serious, but never presented as such, and it was only presented because there was no other way out of it; in other words the Guardian-Washington Post had a choice either to ‘manage-print’ the leak-stories or lose the ‘breaking news of the year’ and ‘management of it’s effect’ to others). Anyway the newspaper goes out to shift the focus to another more confined and more domestic story, the ever-growth of the British Police-Surveillance State (find the links to the articles below, in order of the most recommended reading at the top).
Important Critical analysis on Traditions of British Policing
Before proceeding to these articles, let take a time out to mention how once- with all the usual inherent cultural and racial biases integral to the British Security and Police sector- the British Police was the envy of the world, and personally our admired model of policing, well depicted, ‘too idealistic’ perhaps, on the 1990s BBC TV Series written by Ben Elton starring Rowan Atkinson as Inspector Fowler (called ‘The Thin Blue Line‘), where we find himself and his small police force in battle with the ‘dark side of the police world’ (the CID/Special Branch) in all issues of surveillance (use of CCTV on one episode; or entrapment to get a well-known criminal), to treatment and arrest of the Minors/Juveniles, to my favourite the use of unofficial Police vehicles for police work (today we have police cruising around with the so-called ‘ghost cars’, that civilians cars with zero-police identifications on them, seen in one episode where the entrapment fails in the court because one of the officers wore a wrong, non-official, police uniform!), to use of violence rather than traditional British Policing diplomatic and level-headed approach (American Cowboyish behaviour prevalent within today’s British Police Forces; one of the real-life examples is the visit from one of these, our local Leicestershire Police, to our residence looking for another house resident and unable to get a reply out of his apartment chose instead to red-bloodiedly go for a more brute approach over level-headed approach of trying to knock the door down using forced-entry tools, such as the ‘rammer’, when they could instead just- that if they had spent their heads and time with patience in the first place- known to traditional British policing work to look around/investigate other options, they would have seen that one of his main windows was open and that they could have had an easier entry into the flat by raising a ladder, after all it was only on first floor that 13-15 feet from ground floor, the approach was stopped only when I had to stop them and tell them I will get in touch with the idiot they were looking for when he comes around to get in touch with them).
Anyway, that was the age of the great and the ideal modelled British Police, which even saw us (myself especially) attracted to joining it in future. Alas, today’s force is completely unrecognizable from that old ideal as it has become more detached from the local/immediate and greater communities and societies they are set out to serve and protect. This is the greater contemporary British [and western] societal crisis, a crisis symptomatic of the decadence of old regimes (prevalent in the so-called academic studies of the ‘rise and fall’ of powers, states etc theories).
The Articles On British Police-Surveillance State:
- Met spied on critics of corruption
- This betrayal of my family: Fury of Stephen’s father over revelation that police spies ran secret campaign to ‘dig up dirt’ on Lawrences
- Double life of the cop ordered to dig the dirt: Married officer slept with members of anti-racism group he was sent to infiltrate and attacked police while undercover
- Dozens of police spies face charges: After Lawrence smear scandal, purge on the secret investigators
- Shame of Britain’s police forces: More than 4,000 officers disciplined for criminal behaviour in past five years
- Group learns to sniff out drugs
- Spy agencies win millions more to fight terror threat
- How can we trust a government that spies on us?
- One of the highly recommended articles on NSA-GCHQ (Source: Der Spiegel);
- Druckversion – Global Surveillance: The Public Must Fight for its Right to Privacy – SPIEGEL ONLINE – News – International
- Other headline articles of interests;
- Forget the census, they could just Google us all: Government considers using search engines as source of cheap info on citizens’ lives
- Media attacks on Snowden ‘serving the interests of the surveillance state’
- Barclays to sell off customers’ details: Bank accused of treating account holders like ‘cash cows’ over controversial plans
- In Syria, Let Them Fight It Out
- ‘Get them to write a big check:’ Irish banker pulls bailout figure from ‘arse’ in leaked tapes
- Secret of the T-shirt that could attract: Simple white short-sleeved top with large letter can make a man 12% more attractive | Mail Online