Thursday, 27 November 2014

Keep Calm? No, Panic! How Far We've Fallen In The Name of Safety

I'm forty three years old, an Irish woman who grew up in Ireland during the Troubles. Once a week at least I'd be seeing something in the news about tit-for-tat killings, home invasions in which doors were kicked down and the father of the family shot dead in front of his family, and bombings, mostly of civilian targets. Internment was introduced to combat the apparently endless stream of angry young men eager to fight the Establishment up North, but since it was never addressed as a demand-side issue they simply locked people up on mere suspicion, further fueling the flames of resentment. The Good Friday Agreement put an end to it and now it's just a memory, but not one you want to forget in a hurry. This is why.

Run, hide, and tell

Our Glorious Leaders have done it again, you lucky proles! Yes indeed, Plod has been busy distributing leaflets at railway stations advocating that, if you're caught up in a gunfight or terrorism situation, you should ideally not cast yourself into the line of fire, but rather consider discretion the better part of valour.

Not only should you valiantly advance in the opposite direction, you should ideally find a place to hide, bearing in mind that covering your eyes in the hope that, if you can't see the enemy he can't see you, doesn't actually work as a strategy. Monty Python's Brian Cohen has helpfully provided some personal concealment tips for us here:

Now then, once you have safely secreted your person, do consider letting someone in authority know about it, there's a good fellow.

Then, forgetting that mobile phones don't work underground or where there's no coverage, make a plan and stay safe. A plan for what? Erm, deflecting the blast if a bomb goes off?

Surveillance and social media

I mean, seriously, we're supposed to accept this as a common-sense response to the threat of terrorism in the 21st century? Then again, we're talking about the people who blame Facebook for the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby, forgetting that he was on the radar of GCHQ for years. I suppose they were too busy making more haystacks to find the damn needle. Oh, hell, no, let's use what amounts to a false flag attack by default as an excuse to tighten the grip of Police State USA/UK.

You see, they already knew he was a problem but decided to stop watching one of them in April 2013 for reasons they haven't bothered to specify. And as I've pointed out a ridiculous amount of times before, social problems are usually a demand-side issue. We need to be asking why these people are attracted to extremist movements in the first place and how to guide them to the straight and narrow path of not being a flippin' terrorist instead of watching all of the people all of the time.

It's a trap!

That's not going to happen while surveillance is a multi-trillion dollar industry and the chance of landing a cushy directorship or getting donations from one of the security companies is on offer. Make no mistake, this is not about the Four Horsemen of the Infocalypse, it's about the moolah. The cabbage. The greenbacks. The potato skins. And they're taking it from us poor mugs to give it to the likes of G4S. This is why I've never had any respect for Home Secretary Theresa May or the three main parties as a rule. They're not interested in serving the public, but in using public office for personal gain. You might want to think about voting Pirate in the next election.

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