Friday, May 09, 2008

As sure as night follows day...

... when one fuckwitted authoritarian cunt decides to implement an illiberal piece-of-shit policy, NuLabour will follow suit.
Travellers face a ban on drinking alcohol on trains, buses and trams across the country, it was revealed last night.

The drastic plan to cut loutish behaviour will be considered as part of a Government review aimed at making public transport safer.

Fucking hell, frankly. Why the cunting fuck does Jacqui Smith (or any of the rest of you) think that alcohol makes people into louts? Some people are simply louts and any alcohol merely emphasises that fact. You want to cut loutish behaviour on public transport?—ban louts from travelling on it (oh, and do please tell me how you'd enforce that).

And if you think that banning certain people from public transport is wrong, then may I suggest that you shut the fuck up on the issue of alcohol? I may? Then do.
Shadow Home Secretary David Davis said the Tories were delighted their ideas...

See? The Tories are going to be just as big a bunch of authoritarian cunts as NuLabour.
... were being copied by the Government, but added that the devil would be in the detail. He said: "Even when this Government looks like it is getting it right, it often ends up getting it wrong."

Police already have powers to designate trains and coaches going to and from sporting events as "dry", but a wider ban would prove controversial.

Critics warn that it could fail to curb violence as troublemakers have usually been bingeing in pubs and clubs.

Well, exactly. And that is precisely the same for public transport in London. You fuckwit, Boris.
It would also stop law-abiding travellers enjoying a glass of wine with a meal on an inter-city journey.

Well, as we've seen from the last couple of comment threads, most people don't care. That's right, isn't it? Guys?
It could even raise the farcical prospect of passengers on Eurostar trains being made to drink up before entering England.

Farcical indeed. But it's all for the greater good, isn't it? Guys? Commenters? Hello...?
Liberal Democrat spokesman Chris Huhne said: "A drinks ban on all public transport including long-distance rail would be completely over the top, widely ignored and impossible to enforce.

"This would be the nanny state gone mad. Ordinary passengers should not be punished for the misbehaviour of a minority."

But they are. And, as all too many of The Kitchen's commenters have shown, a lot of people are in favour of punishing the innocent for the sins of the guilty. Ain't that right, guys?

As ever, Falco brings another take to this.
It really is a mutual spiral of fuckwittery lead authoritarianism. The thing is that if you accept the principle behind the no drinking on the tube idea then how can you object to this:
No Muslims on the tube.

Boris today explained that while he accepted that most Muslims were no trouble on the tube at all, those few who were caused such serious trouble, (far more than any drunk), that it would be best to "send a message" to crack down on tube explosions.

No Blacks on the tube:

Boris launched his new policy of a "Darkie free tube" today. He explained to the baying mob that just because most blacks were law abiding did not excuse the increased incidence of theft by this ethnic community. The best way to send a strong message on crime was to ban the lot of them. When asked what would be the situation if you had mixed parentage Boris replied, "We are making the tube a safer, better place. So frankly I wouldn't show up if you've got even a bit of a tan."

Would anyone like to pipe up in favour of the above? No.

Well, what a fucking surprise.


QT said...

This ban has more things wrong with it than you can shake a ban-stick at. The real point is that this, like the cannabis reclassification is tabloid legislation whose only effect will be to prevent law-abiding people from enjoying a quiet drink on the Tube/bus home.

There's already laws against the actual troublemakers (drunk & disorderly/causing a public nuisance/threatening words or behaviour), the problem is enforcing them. As Bob Crow points out, without massively increasing the numbers of Transport Police its going to be left to the Tube staff, who are hardly going to take on six boozed-up louts. They'll happily fine one peaceful individual with a bottle of Bombardier, though!

Everyone coming on here and defending this shit, you deserve every bit of the abuse you're getting.

The Nameless Libertarian said...

It is incredibly patronising nonsense, really. Because some people (a tiny minority, natch) drink on tubes/trains etc and behave like louts, the government (and the mayor of London) assume we all will. The government knows best, nanny knows best.

Fuck the lot of them. Before any ban comes into place, I think there should be a protest of people who drink on public transport but don't behave like utter cunts. Imagine, a few hundred people, all having a bottle of beer on the tube, before calmly and quietly getting off at their destination without any fuss or bother whatsoever. A clear example to Boris and those Nu Labour bastards that there is not need to curtail our freedom further.

Old BE said...

I think there is a huge difference between an operator deciding on a policy and the government passing "global" legislation.

John B said...

DK, you've got to remember that James Slack is probably the most dishonest journalist writing in the UK today (which is one hell of an achievement). See 5CC.

What Jacqui Smith actually said was:

"I also understand people's concerns about anti-social behaviour on
public transport. Working with passengers, transport staff and
operators, Ruth Kelly and I will take action to answer these concerns.

"We want to stamp out ASB on our buses, trains and trams. If more
powers are needed to protect staff and the travelling public, we will
provide them."

This does seem to be tagged onto a C&J speech to counter Boris's appeal, but OTOH there's absolutely no suggestion that this will involve a grog ban.

"I think there is a huge difference between an operator deciding on a policy and the government passing "global" legislation."

No, if the operator is government controlled then there is no effective difference.

Old BE said...

So are the train operators controlled by the government? Do they have to get approval for quiet coaches and buffet trolleys?

silas said...

DK, I was - when it was originally announced - marginally in favour of the ban, as I felt it might reduce the amount of aggro on public transport in the late evenings.

But having reflected over the past couple of days, I now believe that this legislation is - like so many recently introduced laws - over the top and unnecessary. There are hundreds of laws in place to stop the unruly behaviour of people (not just on public transport). Sadly the majority of them are not enforced and we end up with the situation we're currently in.

Pubs (and off licences) are under a duty of care not to serve alcohol to anyone who is drunk. This seems to be regularly ignored. Buying alcohol on behalf of someone who is already drunk is also an offence, yet this too is routinely ignored.

This new legislation may not be ignored, but as there are just not enough people to enforce it, the public may decide to take matters into their own hands - and that is where the trouble is really likely to start.

If there were a more considered campaign against the loutish behaviour of some individuals, rather than a draconian introduction of a ban such as this, then I would be all in favour of it. As it is, however, I am with you.

John B said...

"So are the train operators controlled by the government? Do they have to get approval for quiet coaches and buffet trolleys?"

No. Buffet trolleys are provided based on commercial considerations (often by third-parties who do it on a no-cost-or-payment-to-the-operator basis). If I remember correctly the restaurant cars on NXEC (ex-GNER) are part of their franchise conditions, don't think that's the case anywhere else.

If there were a more considered campaign against the loutish behaviour of some individuals, rather than a draconian introduction of a ban such as this, then I would be all in favour of it.

While I admire the sentiment and the fact that you've changed your mind on the ban, a mean person might paraphrase you as saying "if the government were to enforce existing laws against doing bad things, rather than imposing new laws against harmless behaviour, then I'd be all in favour of it"...

Old BE said...

So what you are saying is that if TFL was privately owned and unregulated, and its board of directors decided that it wanted to ban the drinking of alcohol on its services because it wanted to attract new customers or curry favour with its existing customers, then the ban would not be totalitarian?

monoi said...

Considering the amount of subsidy Tfl gets for running the tube and buses, they are for all intents and purposes public services.

The fact that they call us customers when we are nothing of the sort should not be fooling you.

monoi said...

Indeed, although the idea of competition on train services is just horseshit (and we subsidise them as well anyway).

It would for example have been very acceptable for bar owners to ban smoking in their premises if they thought that it would be good for their business or get more customers in.

As it is, the cunts cannot enforce the laws they have created. They should start with that before anything else.

Anonymous said...

"Would anyone like to pipe up in favour of the above? No."

People can't be anything other than black (Michael Jackson excepted), and since we have freedom of religion, it wouldn't be right if we asked them to change their religion in order to ride on the Tube.

So this example is clearly pretty damn stupid from the get-go. Unless you can find some mutants who were born clutching a can of Stella that can't be surgically removed, then you could make that comparison.

Hint: try Basildon, I think there are some on the estates there with such an affliction...

Your arguments are usually better than this, I have to say.

wilczek said...

Well if it has come to this level of pissflappery then equally those who are in denial about their consumption and who just can't face the journey home without some alcoholic support, might militate in favour of:

"CONSUMERS OF FLANN'S 'OLD SADDLE SNIFFER' TO BE ALLOWED TO DRINK AND DRIVE. Crossbench authorities, police groups, and road safety watchdogs confirmed their unity on the radical move in the statement:'It has been asserted after much deliberation, that a blanket ban on drink-driving has been an unacceptable restriction on civil liberties. The plain facts are, most drink-drivers get home safely without sustaining injury themselves or causing injury to others. It's clearly a case of 'the few spoiling it for the majority'. It is also broadly affirmed that consumers of bottled beers from microbreweries are far nicer people and more careful drivers (even when excessively intoxicated)than those who consume 6-packs of Special Brew or White Cider. In the light of this new thinking, it is with great pleasure that we are able to approve the mandate of this exception for these people of manifest discernment, and sound values.'"

ben said...

I feel that you may be missing the point here. Drink driving ALWAYS poses a potential harm to other people. Enjoying a drink on the tube does not. One does not choose to crash if he is drink driving, it just happens occasionally. You do, however, make a decision regarding whether or not to be a drunken prick when travelling on public transport, and laws already exist to punish those who are.

Anonymous said...

Still, it seems to come back to 'oh, so you can't manage an hour without a drink'?

Yet it should surely be clear by now that that isn't the point. It's already extended to 'Oh, so you can't manage a fantastically tedious six-hour intercity journey without a glass of wine with a meal?' Next up will no doubt be a total ban on alcohol on intercontinental flights, followed by 'Oh, you can't manage a twenty-hour flight without a glass of wine? Shocking. You must therefore be a Stella-soaked chav who spends his time on park benches with a bottle in a paper bag'. Won't be long now.

The alcohol isn't the point. Banning people from harmless behaviour is the point. It's not a ban on hooliganism, that's already illegal, and already not tackled. Why does anyone imagine that banning alcohol from the one-drink folk will have any effect on the beer-soaked yobs? Nobody stopped them before. Nobody will stop them now.

As I said before, I don't drink on public transport. I never have, but it's nice to know that I could, should I choose to do so one day.

Juliam - we have freedom of religion, we also have the freedom to have a cold beer. Some beer drinkers go over the top and cause trouble. So we must, surely, ban all beer drinking. Some religious types go over the top and blow people up. Why not, then, ban religion too? The example is far from silly. Nobody has to drink. Nobody has to follow a religion. Both are choices, and both choices can be curtailed on the whim of government.

Skin colour is not a choice - but then, demonising all drinkers for the bad behaviour of a few must lead to demonising all members of a religion for the same reason and then it's but a small step to extend that reasoning to all members of an ethnic group. Will it stop where you think it should? Will it stop where you say 'Oh, but that's silly? Really? Why would it?

Many are saying this blanket ban on alcohol is silly. Many said, smokers and non-smokers, that the total blanket ban on smoking was silly. Their definitions of 'silly' weren't valid. Why would yours be?

Wilczek - if you're drunk and in control of a vehicle, it's not the same as being a little tiddly and sitting three carriages from the driver who can't see, hear or smell you. If the driver was drinking, I wouldn't get on the train.

But it's not about the drink. It's about the choice, or removal thereof. That's the issue as I see it.

Not the banning of drink. The banning of yet another option.

Eventually we'll all live the same way, eat and drink the same things at the same time, go to work in neat rows and go home in orderly queues. Like Pavlov's dogs, we'll salivate in unison when the bell rings.

There'll be no need to worry about making choices, because there will no longer be any choices to make.

It's not a future I like the look of.

John Trenchard said...

in my view, the conservatives have always had an authoritarian streak.

that goes without saying.

but to equate conservatives with marxists is beyond the pale. at least, we libertarians can ARGUE with conservatives, and they will listen to the arguments.

with marxists we have no chance. they dont listen whatsoever.

methinks DK rebels a bit TOO much... i'd rather a conservative in charge than an outright Marxist. its a small step towards a more right wing agenda, and that can only be a good thing.

step by step DK - dont expect the revolution to happen overnight mate.

Anonymous said...

Just to be controversial, I probably would support a ban on Muslims on the Tube, at least until Muslims don't feel the need to take the side of one of their own rather than the rest of us, even when they know that that 'one of their own' is preaching fundamentalist bollocks, recruiting simple-minded children to fight in Afghanistan, planning a terrorist attack, etc.

Of course, it would be difficult to enforce, unless everyone was forced to take a swig of beer before going through the gates! :)

[I tend to be against the drink ban - won't work, although those drinking on the Tube at night do tend to be loutish drunks, so maybe it's an easy way of identifying them for our stupid police, who don't seem to be able to identify them generally! :( ]

Anonymous said...

Blue Eyes said...
"So what you are saying is that if TFL was privately owned and unregulated, and its board of directors decided that it wanted to ban the drinking of alcohol on its services because it wanted to attract new customers or curry favour with its existing customers, then the ban would not be totalitarian?"

I am. I think 'totalitarian' strays into hyperbole to describe it anyway, but certainly a private company having policy about what may or may not occur on its property is somewhat different to politicians making that decision.

Anonymous said...

For clarification, any legal ban on drinking alcohol on public transport is authoritarian, whereas a politician instituting a corporate ban on a publicly-run public transport body is not quite 'authoritarian', though certainly unsettling.

Which is why Jacqui Smith is a authoritarian cunt if she introduces such a law and why Boris isn't (because his policy isn't a law, it's a TFL policy).

A private company making such a corporate policy would be no such thing.

Anonymous said...

I think the answer lies in forbidding anyone who is not libertarian from standing for office, and not allowing socialists to vote. You have to watch carefully these control freaks and stop the Nanny Knows Best otherwise we would live in a totalitarian state.

Anonymous said...

"Travellers face a ban on drinking alcohol on trains, buses and trams across the country, it was revealed last night."

Jacqui Smith:

Bloody gypsies, getting on trains and drinking and stuff. And they don't pay tax. Can I have your vote?

Anonymous said...

Just thought I may as well state the bleedin' obvious here- that drinking is the new smoking. The strategy as with the trailblazing campaign against tobacco is to whip up a religious fervour among the cuntish community and then slowly but steadily restrict the opportunities of people to indulge, a bit at a time.

There's no use trying to have a rational discussion about the practicality or utility of any particular measure along the way, since practicality and utility aren't the intention of any particular restrictive measure. Each is just a step along the road.

As with tobacco, useful idiots like Boris will assist the campaign for short term gain. He almost certainly has no personal interest in restricting drinking; but as a politician he has to operate within the parameters of the cultural hegemony which has now been entirely progressivised. Unless we can manage our own long march through the institutions to libertise the hegemonic value system, we're in for very miserable times ahead.

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