Friday, October 17, 2008

Cash? I'll be having that, thank you

It was some time ago, in 2007, that this stinking government proposed that, if you were carrying more than £1,000 in cash on you, it could be stolen by some policeman on, essentially, no evidence whatsoever. At the time it was, I think, Timmy who summed it up best.
There you are, amiably wandering down the street, and if a policeman so wishes, he can not only stop and search you, he can insist that you divulge where you have been and where you are going. If you have more than £1,000 in cash on you it can be confiscated, you having to prove where you got it from and what you were going to do with it: for the assumption is that such cash amounts are the proceeds or enablers of crime and so the burden of proof reverses. Finally, if you keep silent John Reid wants this to be taken as proof of your guilt.

A free, happy and liberal land now, isn't it?

(Your humble Devil seems to remember writing a furious article at the time, but I can't seem to find it, unfortunately.)

Of course, these sorts of measures were only to be used to stop eeeevil drug dealers from living off their ill-gotten gains, right? I mean, who could possibly object to evil drug dealers having their money stolen off them? Even if they haven't been convicted, they are still evil drug dealers. Although no one has proven that they are drug dealers, the police say that they are and the police never lie.

In fact, the police are the most honest and wonderful people walking the streets today; gone are those embarrassing times when the police fitted people up for crimes that they hadn't committed and then got caught, eh?

Well, all of that is just as well for not only will the police be able to steal your money off you for no good reason at all, but now they get to keep half of it too. Timmy summarises it pretty well, I think.
So those confiscation orders of people as yet unconvicted of a crime.

They now apply to anyone carrying over £1,000 in cash.

And the police force prosecuting them gets 50% of the dosh.

Nothing can go wrong with this, can it?

No, nothing at all. Not in any way. After all, it is only eeeeevil drug-dealers who are going to be affected by this law, eh? Just as it's only eeeevil brown people who are going to be affected by Jacqui's constant attempts to monitor the our communications, document our every movement, and lock us away for six weeks without charge.

A little while ago, I wrote a post outlining the government's divide and rule strategy.
It's one of the oldest strategies in the book: divide and rule. And few governments in living memory have been so adept at it as NuLabour: it has been at the heart of many of their policies. They have divided the peoples of the Union; they have divided, through QUANGOs and censuses emphasising differences, black, brown and white peoples of the Union. Through jealousy they have divided rich and poor.

"Fear not," says the government, "for the state—and only the state—can save you!" And then they proceed to divide some more. Devolved governments (but with little power), harsher sentences for "racist" crimes, and the stealing of more money from "the rich" to hand out as gifts to the poor.

The brilliant bit about this tactic, as applied by NuLabour, is that it encourages people to think of each other group not as fellow human beings, but as people below or different from them. "They aren't a person like I am, they are just a toff/darkie/Muslim/Scot/Sassenach/Taff/idiot, etc."

And so people get angry and demand solutions, they demand concessions for their own particular group and guess what?—the state can help you, friend, for the state is the friend of everyone. The state is the righter of all wrongs, the great arbiter, the generous donor of largesse. And as each group is appeased so the jealousy and resentment of the others are inflamed and they demand special treatment for themselves and more shoddy treatment for "those others".

And so it is that the government have been able to put through some disgusting laws, by aiming them at groups that the other groups dislike. 42 days detention without trial?—well, it'll only apply to terrorists, and they're all Muslims or at the very least darkies, eh?

The scrapping of double jeopardy, habeas corpus and trial by jury?—well, that'll only apply to the eeevil criminals (no matter that they have yet to be proven such). Oh, and the darkies, of course. And the poor.

The confiscation of your assets before you are even found guilty, or reversing the burden of proof for the confiscation of assets? Well, that'll only apply to drugdealers and the like.

And none of these people are really human, are they? Not like me.

My theory has been reinforced by this comment by Gareth.
"The great pity is that the majority of the British people seem quite happy to encourage the government to curtail our liberty."

You've got that wrong. It's always someone else's liberty! Minorities. Other political parties. Smokers. Icelandic bankers. Never me. Oh no.

And the British people are complicit in all of this. And if you think that we are all too sensible, here in the blogosphere, to endorse this kind of merry removal of liberties in support of our own personal dislikes then you are sorely mistaken. One only needs to look at the comments on this post, or this post, in support of Boris's back on drinking on public transport.

On a similar note and on a similar subject, Vindico quotes a speech that is entirely pertinent.
"...while the truncheon may be used in lieu of conversation, words will always retain their power. Words offer the means to meaning, and for those who will listen, the enunciation of truth. And the truth is, there is something terribly wrong with this country, isn't there? Cruelty and injustice, intolerance and oppression. And where once you had the freedom to object, think, and speak as you saw fit, you now have censors and systems of surveillance coercing your conformity and soliciting your submission. How did this happen? Who's to blame? Well, certainly there are those more responsible than others, and they will be held accountable, but again truth be told, if you're looking for the guilty, you need only look into a mirror"

That film may be fiction, but its message is pointed and entirely fucking correct.

So, look into that mirror: are you prepared to protect the liberty of those whom you dislike as well as your own? And will you support those who do?


Patrick Vessey said...

So those confiscation orders of people as yet unconvicted of a crime.

They now apply to anyone carrying over £1,000 in cash.

And the police force prosecuting them gets 50% of the dosh.

One way to stop runs on banks, I guess -- just have a bunch of coppers stood outside waiting to swipe 50% of your savings...

Anonymous said...

If you have more than a grand in cash the police can confiscate it, and if you have more than 50 grand in the bank the (nationalised) bank can default on you.

Mike said...

Dearest Devil, I read your blog all the time and never comment.

Mostly that's because after the treatment you've given the matters at hand, the only thing left to say is "cunts. irredeemable fucking cunts."

So, therefore, I say: Cunts. Irredeemable fucking cunts!

leg-iron said...

I think I'll wander around with £999.99 on me at all times.

You never know when you'll need it, after all.

Hobbs End Martian said...

'are you prepared to protect the liberty of those whom you dislike as well as your own?'

Err, no.

Where I dislike those who would curtail liberty, force their twisted ideologies upon others, make us live by moveable standards while they live utterly as they please and piss on us and tell us it's raining.

Rope, Lampost, some assembly required.

mitch said...

"Rope, Lampost, some assembly required."

Its coming.

dixon_cox said...

Many years ago I lived next door to a crack den in Hackney. At the time I mentioned this to the head of Hackney police and he assured me that the biggest dealers in Hackney were in fact the Police

Old Holborn said...

November the 5th is coming.

It may be your last chance to walk the streets anonymously. Use it.

V said...

I had £2600 in Cash on me a few days ago.
I was using it to buy a car and to pay a few bills.
It does seem that this process of trying to kill cash is being fought on all fronts, and now that the government practically run the banks, the concept of a private sale, devoid of logging by government agencies is much, much closer!

pagar said...

"Rope, Lampost, some assembly required."

Its coming.

No. It's not.

Most of our fellow citizens couldn't give a toss about their freedom. You could lock them up in prisons and, as long as they had adequate heating, take away food, comfortable prison uniforms, safety from physical harm and Sky TV they would be perfectly happy.

So, despite the fact the UK is being transformed into one vast concetration camp, most people just couldn't care less and the chances of motivating them to violently rebel in support of freedom are non existent.

So let's stop talking about ropes and lamposts on this blog- it scares nobody. Much better to propose practical policies on ways in which authoritarianism can be resisted. Or go for a walk with Old Holborn- that might scare a few!!!!

JuliaM said...

"Most of our fellow citizens couldn't give a toss about their freedom. You could lock them up in prisons and, as long as they had adequate heating, take away food, comfortable prison uniforms, safety from physical harm and Sky TV they would be perfectly happy."

Having seen the reactions of ordinary people and the authorities to the cases of the tiger in the Volvo and the paintballing schoolboy, I'm forced to agree with Pagar...

whoops said...

pagar, that's because the uk already IS a giant prison, at least for the law abiding majority. of course the crooks at the top and bottom of the pole can steal and kill with impunity, for reasons already well explored in the original article. on the slim chance that thereis a popular uprising, it will simply save the government from needing to stage any more terror attacks as it will provide the perfect excuse to bring in the final stages of the control grid and martial law.

The Hobbs End Martian said...

Agreed Pagar.

All these annoyances imposed upon our daily lives nevertheless only nibble at the edges of our comfort zone. Folk exhale and then accept the smoking law and litter fines and wheel clamps and petty minded bureaucracy.

While we are still able to shut the front door on all that, put the kettle on, light up and watch Corrie, phone out for a pizza and spend the night on the lash, it's not worth the hassle to organise pitchforks and flaming torches.

Whatever else our provincial barons do they need to make sure the power stays on ... although

streetlights to go off

pagar said...

Folk exhale and then accept the smoking law and litter fines and wheel clamps and petty minded bureaucracy.

This blog is a useful outlet for those who don't accept these things but are driven absolutely crazy by them. But I am afraid we will always be a small minority because fear is the key and most people are easily frightened. When they walk down a dark street, they don't feel enraged at the sight of a CCTV camera. They feel comforted.

And so they are pleased to embrace the silken chains they are provided with. All we can do is to try to unpick a few and resist the rest with words and thought.

Gareth said...

When I were a lad I didn't have a nanny.

I do now. We all do. They must know it simply doesn't work though. Surely. They must. Perhaps they do not care.

The bastard-hard perps will always be there in society. Terrorists, bank robbers, rapists, thugs. Vile and violent for no good reason. No matter how many get given community based sentences more will take their place. People will still want to eat, drink and be merry. They will still get fat, old and infirm. We still won't look after our teeth. People will still drive faster than the law allows without harming a soul. The worst thing about all of this is that the shits who curtail our lives are just like us. Speeding, smoking, drinking and all the rest. A complete dislocation between their jobs and being human.

I'd like to think they do genuinely mean well with their interfering ways but... they don't do they. Perhaps they used to. We are a means to their rarefied and comfortable end now. If they truly had our best interest at heart they would do no more than pick us up when we fall and point us in the right direction. Instead they want to hold our hands every step of the way and make us go where they want, not where we want.

Roger Thornhill said...


I have long believed that G Brown hates cash. He wants to abolish it so each transaction can be monitored, controlled, sold to marketeers, sold to anyone in fact.