Monday, December 17, 2007

Divide and Conquer

One of the tools abused endlessly by the charlatans that rule us is "special treatment" (good or bad) for specific groups. After all, we are all "minorities" if you slice the cake thin enough ... (for an example "reductio ad absurdum" Oxbridge and Eton educated multi-millionaire Dukes are not exactly common!)

So I wasn't too surprised to notice, yesterday, several copies of a huge poster bemoaning assault and violence against workers and pointing out that such is a crime. Of course it is. Assault and violence against anybody (and, in some cases, animals, inanimate property and even politicians) is a crime. You are not even allowed to beat the maliciously indigent (I can see the opportunity for an unpleasantly populist change in the law, here) So why single out workers (apart from the fact that they probably are a minority in the blighted socialist wasteland of Falkirk)?

It doesn't matter. It really doesn't. It is the split by specificity that matters. Take detention without charge. The mendacious statists have got it from all sides with their latest plan to increase the detention for terrorism suspects to 42 / 56 / 90 (I forget which number they are trying now) days. Liberty and Amnesty, as you would reasonably expect; the Guardian & senior Labour figures, quite properly but slightly more surprisingly; Polly, her very self; right wingers; left wingers; the previous Lord Chancellor; Tories and Lib-Dims etc, etc. Almost universal condemnation. Why?

Well, not just because it is illiberal and unjustified. Because we all know, like the Serious and Organised Crime Act, that laws initially announced to apply just to terrorists (aka, unless you are Spanish, Islamists, at the current time) will soon be extended to apply to paedophiles (and there won't be too many prepared to speak up for them), murder suspects and, eventually, those merely guilty of embarrassing (or merely interrupting) our politicians.

Divide and conquer. We need to take a stand, one and all, at each and every attempt to diminish our human rights. Guantanamo & extraordinary rendition; suspension of habeas corpus; extended detention without charge; electoral sleaze; banning protests at Parliament - all great ideas of Gordon and his mates.

Update: And I forgot to add - the use of RIPA Part III (whether actually decryption or key requests) against non-violent animal rights activists as opposed to terrorists (Islamist or ALF) or kiddy-fiddlers.

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