Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Protecting Blair's Arse

Oh dear. If Al Quaeda doesn't get us, Bird Flu will.
Think I might as well have another cigarette.
If you'd told me 30 years ago that in my lifetime we'd have detention without trial on the orders of a politician I would have assumed that Britain was going to have a totalitarian government of the right. This has always been more likely to happen than an authoritarian government of the left, given the British people's conservative instincts. But this 'Labour' Government is now laying down a framework that could be embraced joyously by any future government of the right. By which I mean even further right than this lot.

Blair was saying again yesterday that people would blame him if a terrorist attack occurred and they thought he hadn't done enough to prevent it. So it all boils down to sacrificing fundamental liberties and the rule of law in order to protect Blair's back.
Although I don't have unqualified belief in the good sense of the public I think most people understand that no amount of legislation can ever protect you against people who don't mind being caught or dying for their cause. That's the big difference with the IRA terrorists of an earlier period. I think they would only blame the Government if - as happened in America before 9/11 - they found they had turned a blind eye to something like suspects taking flying lessons.
And, as someone says in a letter to The Guardian today, if despite these measures we still have a terrorist attack, what further measures will the Government resort to then?


At 9:42 PM, Blogger Roley said...

The worst thing is not knowing how to protest effectively about this. Where is the outrage? Why aren't we in the streets shouting about this? What the fuck has happened to us that we've become so wet and unwilling to get off our backsides are using what freedom of speech that we do have? Sometimes i feel so disappointed with myself that I'm not doing something. Am I alone in feeling that?

At 10:41 AM, Blogger peter said...

No expert on politics, but hasn't that been happening in another part of the UK for decades without that much of a fuss? (I'm meaning internment, for your younger readers.)

At 11:23 AM, Blogger Willie Lupin said...

Roley, you're not alone in feeling that. But it's difficult to motivate people about civil liberties. They think it doesn't affect them until the early morning knock on the door comes. There's a famous quote about that which I can't remember at the moment.

Peter, internment in N. Ireland was abolished long ago. In the brief period it existed it was a disaster and caused many more people to join the IRA. Nobody now disputes that. The fear is that today's measures will also strengthen today's terrorist organisations.

At 9:23 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 6:06 PM, Blogger Willie Lupin said...

Thanks, Anon, for that quote. It got posted twice and then I accidentally deleted it twice (Blogger's fault). But we have back up at Mission Control so here it is again:

Martin Niemöller: 'First they came for the Communists, but I was not a Communist, so I said nothing. Then they came for the Social Democrats, but I was not a Social Democrat, so I did nothing. Then came the trade unionists, but I was not a trade unionist. And then they came for the Jews, but I was not a Jew, so I did little. Then when they came for me, there was no one left to stand up for me.'

Thanks so much. I'll put it in my little book of quotes so I don't get caught out again.


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