Thursday, February 15, 2007

Smoking and surveillance

This post at Select Privacy sums up my feelings about the smoking ban.
Ian Gray of the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health made no bones about the spying that will be involved.
"These officers do not have to identify themselves when they go into premises and they can even film and photograph people to gather evidence although this may not be appropriate in many cases." (BBC)

They will then be able to demand a summary payment.

They really just do not get it do they? The concept of liberty, the concept of personal freedom, the concept of not living in a fucking police state completely escapes the fuckers who come up with these miserable excuses for policies.

Of course, one of the reasons for this is that here we have a classic case of ivory towers. Yes, our blessed nannies have wangled themselves an exemption (Devil's Kitchen, gratuitously offensive!). It almost defies belief that MPs could be so brazen. After all, one of the reasons given for not exempting all private members clubs from the ban was the possible effect of second-hand smoke on bar staff. I suppose the egos of the inhabitants of the House of Commons are so strong that the beer is magnetically attracted to their glasses.

Madagascan hissing cockroaches...

Now, one of the arguments is that the Houses of Parliament are Royal Palaces and the Crown cannot bring a prosecution against itself. This is an entirely spurious argument: whilst the building may be a Royal Palace, the people who work in it and the people who employ them, and this includes MPs and the civil service, are still subject to the rule of law.

After all, if this were not the case, we would not see the possibility of Chuckles Blair and his cronies being prosecuted in the Cash for Honours row: MPs would, in fact, be exempt from every law in the land; they would be above the law.

The Crown—that is, the monarch—can bring a criminal prosecution against anyone in the land (other than him or herself), and this includes every single one of its employees. MPs are the employees of the Crown and can therefore be prosecuted. The MPs have simply engineered these opt-outs; no amount of "Royal Palace ciminal exemption" shit can possibly apply to those who work in these buildings.

Now, on with the cockroach breeding programme...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Im a bit puzzled what happens next when said spied on drunken smoker is interrupted bu jobsworth official. "Shove it up your filing tray" is going to be the least offensive reply he is likely to get surely!