One of the stories that I brought up was Timmy's comment on the so-called Super-ASBOs (or Violent Offender Orders).
These new “super-Asbos” will be aimed not only at people who have a history of violent behaviour or who have just left prison but also those who may not yet have committed an offence.
So, there you are, Burberry encovered, tattoos rampant, wandering down the road with a can of Stella or the like. Copper comes up to you and says, you know, I think you migh commit a criminal offense at some time in the future. Would you like to come along with me sir?
Off you go and:Like Asbos, the police or probation service would apply for the orders to the civil courts, where the threshold for proof is lower than in a criminal case. The document says the process will therefore be much quicker and hearsay evidence will be permitted to obtain an order against a suspect. Any breach of the order would be a criminal offence.
What, after they've got this order, can they insist you must do?...the measures will ban potential trouble-makers from certain areas or mixing with certain people, alert police when they move house and possibly force them to live in a named hostel, give details of vehicles they own and impose a curfew on them. The orders will last for at least two years, with no upper limit. Any breach could lead to up to five years in jail.
So, you've actually done nothing wrong at all (perhaps something against the rules of good taste with that outfit but we haven't actually put Trinny and Susannah into power just yet) and the State, on the balance of probablities, including hearsay evidence, can insist that you move out of your house, move towns, probably lose your job....wonderful isn't it?
Indeed, it is an absolute fucking shocking thing to even propose, and so you can imagine that I was (almost) struck dumb when Nick Palmer MP defended the measures. Nick used that old canard—tried and tested by NuLabour after the 7/7 bombings—that the greatest right that anyone had was to walk the streets in safety, and that this right superceded all others.
"What's next?" I thought to myself, "Will this idiot trot out that huge stinking pile of old bollocks about having nothing to fear if you have nothing to hide?" Luckily Nick did not do so and, even more fortunately for Nick, we ran out of time.
Still, I feel that, for the record, I ought to make this clear: Nick Palmer MP supports the right of the state to restrict your freedom of movement and association—to restrict your life and liberty—on nothing more than a suspicion that you look like you may, at some point, possibly commit a crime somewhere.
Every time that I think that our elected representatives could not get any lower in my estimation, some fucking fool says something so contemptible that I find a new nadir. Today's candidate is Nick Palmer MP: why not show your appreciation for Nick's firm stand via his website or email?