Jump to content



Recommended Posts

Are we becoming a nation where fear is the norm?


We have an Olympics where security seems to be totally OTT. Do we really need anti aircraft missiles, warships and troops not counting the massive Police presence and the jokey G4S personnel? Is confiscating empty water bottles more to do with commercialism rather than any attempt to protect anyone. AFter allmaybe you wish to hit someone with a250 ml plastic bottle. Sounda a bit like Allo Allo and the wet celery. Is it really necessary for Immigration to treat every grandmother and/or family as potential bombers? Are we really likely to be bombed, poisoned or whatever during the 2 weeks of late July and August? We have had nasty bombing campaigns in the past from such organisations as the IRA but I do not recall personal freedoms being restricted in quite such a manner. To my mind any potential threat is more likely to come from people already inside the country, and who is to say they will not target other objectives while everyone is focussed on a certain area of London? Did they do all this in previous Games? If so no wonder the countries concerned are still paying the costs.


We also now appear to be entering a phase where even speech is now a potential crime. Even if you do not actually say anything, it evidently only takes someone to think you were going to, for the full force of the legal system to come down on you like a ton of bricks. The last time that happened was in Nazi Germany. Have we reached the same stage?


I will not even begin to mention the various H&S rules and regulations all designed to prevent anyone from actually doing anything with the continual mantra ‘it is all for your safety’. Are we going to reach the Orwellian state where a television is installed in every home, continually on, with a camera watching your every move? It seems very close nowadays.


I admit it is refreshing to visit other EU countries where things are still pretty much as we used to be. People enjoy themselves without any rules and regulations and as for talk, they say what they like. As someone has mentioned in a newspaper Mallorca airport handles thousands of arrivals every day and they are usually waved through in seconds. Britain has everyone queuing for hours. Mallorca of course has been bombed how many times?? I take a ferry to Europe and I drive off and am on the road in seconds. I arrive back in the UK and have to wait 45 minutes for Immigration to ‘check me out’. I would not mind so much if they actually did stop any terrorist but they get waved through, or claim asylum and then we pay for them to stay here. Maybe that is why the USA reckons the UK has more potential terrorists than many 3rd world countries and gets very worried about us.


Can we/will we ever get back to normality??? Well, I have said my piece., now going for a walk...........very carefully and must not forget my Hi Vis jacket....just in case.

By the way do they still have javelin throwing at the Olympics? Possibly far too dangerous and maybe they will saw the points off, or make them plastic. You cannot be too carefull, can you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest pelmetman

Boo :D


Well if our politicians stopped sticking their noses into other countries business and starting illegal wars, we might find we become less of a target ;-)


How much are we spending a year protecting Mr Blairs hide?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dave.....the thrust of your post is spot on.......over reaction by the authorities in almost every aspect of our lives....... and yes they still have the javelin event BUT because competitors were getting so proficient and distances were getting so much greater the javelin was redesigned (relative to it's flight characteristics) to reduce the distances that can be obtained.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I speak for myself when I say I disagree that "we" are suffering the fear, though I think many in parliament and public offices are. They have reason but, as stated by Dave, that is mainly of their own making as a group. Our government poked a stick down a hornet's nest, in fact, several sticks down several hornet's nests! Consequently, they are the main target, and the new enemy is far more fanatical than the IRA ever were. Defence against suicide bombers is difficult almost to the point of impossibility. London, when the IRA bombings were going on, could be a little un-nerving at times - and there was even a period when I'd cross the road rather than walk past a postbox! Was that fear, irrationality, or a wise precaution? Try it some time!


What I find more irritating is their incessant prattling about "keeping the public safe". They can't. End.


I suspect there is a little political convenience in emphasising the risks. It used to be the cold war and the "reds" we all had to fear, now it is terrorists. It helps to keep us in order, and it persuades many of us to accept restrictions on liberty, on the somewhat spurious grounds that it is necessary for our security. I tend, by and large, to disagree. The hard truth, to me, is that government made flawed decisions, got us into a mess, and has been over-compensating ever since because it knows what it did was ill judged. They all had a hand in it, so they all adopt the same stance.


Speech I will not comment on, save to say that I object to the general espousal of "industrial" language by a certain class/type of individual, for whom every publicly uttered three word sentence will contain at least one f***!


The H&S rules are not the problem, it is their mis-application by fools. The rules cause no problems when properly applied: on the contrary, they achieve a great deal of good.


Haven't seen the comments on Majorca airport, but if they are as reported, they appear to be the product of staggering ignorance. Was this a proper newspaper, or a comic? Heathrow and Majorca are directly comparable, are they? Spain has, AFAIK, only ever had one significant externally executed bombing (though plenty by ETA), and that was the Madrid train. After that, they rather quickly and ignobly changed course. Low threat, low security requirement. No comparison.


The main reason we are not held up when entering Europe is not, IMO, terrorism, it is illegal immigration, and the traffic tends to be one-way. So, as the EU land borders leak like sieves, and the other border authorities know the illegals just want to pass through, a number tend to shut one eye and leave us to find them. So, our border controls are faced with multiple threats, smuggling, illegal immigration, and terrorist infiltration. Some get caught, others do not. But, ask yourself this: how long would you be held at ports and airports were they to decide to achieve 100% detection, as you appear to want? Last time we came back through the tunnel, we were waved through. Occasionally we have had passports vetted, but more often on exit. From what I hear, trying to get into the US is rather more difficult.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Having passed through many airports throughout the world, except the USA I admit, I have never had longer waits than at UK ones, except Al Khobar in Saudi where we were all forced to wait until every Saudi had cleared, and then every other arab national before expats were allowed grudgingly to pass. However, I do accept that regional airports do not suffer the same fate as Heathrow and before anyone jumps on me by saying that Heathrow handles more passengers, yes it does and therefore the capacity to cope should be there. It is not rocket science. As for ETA they have now discovered one of their personnel 'hiding' in Edinburgh and has been here for 10 years. Of course now that he has been arrested he wants asylum even although there are outstanding EU warrants for him. And of course, he is getting legal aid to fight extradition. As one journalist stated 'you could not make it up'.


As for immigration checking for illegals possibly Brian can explain why my caravan is searched 'on the way out' and not on the way in. And no, they are not looking at gas appliances. Sitting at Hull on the way back in 2 weeks ago we tried to figure out the 'pattern' if there was one. After all there was notmuch else we could do in the queue. We could only suggest that Immigration were working on a 'quota' system. It seemed that about every 5th vehicle got the 'treatment' for several minutes while the other 4 were just waved through. Nobody was actually pulled to one side in the event. No pattern from licence plates either, so i have no explanation for them.

Was I a 5th? Cannot say although there was much looking at passports and us by the official before swiping them through his little machine, then checking another screen and then 'Have a nice day'. Having just lost an hour of driving time to get home, I bit my tongue and drove off, or would probably have been arrested.



H&S rules may on the surface appear sensible and I do agree that implementation is the buzzword. But are all these 'rules' really necessary, or more as s result of spurious compensation claims? But if we did stop the claims would the Councils stop the rules I wonder. After all it keeps plenty of people in work and boosts Council expenditure.


I also accept the media has a lot to answer for. The words 'terror' horrifying', brutal, abuse, catastrophic', disaster' seem to be words that must appear somewhere in every publication, whether actually required or not. OK, they are trying to sell newspapers and it is obvious that actual factual truth comes way down the list of priorities, but it can be a bit depressing after a while. TV is even worse and it seems every programme now comes with a 'this contains bad language and scenes some may find distressing'. Yes, they are distressing so why show them? If the storyline says an autopsy is being performed I can accept that, without actually seeing heads being sawn apart. Surely a narrative that explained the scene would do just as well? Of course my wife is correct when she says 'do not read newspapers and do not watch television' and we will be a lot happier, but then I get bored.


Of course Brian is correct when he states other countries do not have the situations we have, but then again one could ask why that is the case. However, that would entail even more discussion and things are depressing enough. I saw a picture of Blair posing with Red Ed and stating he 'wants to come back' . That would definitely justify the use of the word 'terrifying' and 'horrifying' so i can only hope that someone somewhere takes him aside and politely tells him where to go.


On the bright side only 5 weeks until I get my caravan checked again at Hull.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...