French speeding fine challenges: the strategic problem of British Libertarianism is that we are not Poujadists.


David Davis

Obnoxio the Clown happily moderates his usual level of un-re-bloggable-invective, and flags up an interesting problem. It now seems the the French Gestapo Police have cottoned on to the idea of anti-motorist-speed-camera-radar-directed-police-fundraising, in the way that the British Gestapo Police have been doing for some time. He cites an interesting website which automatically challenges speeding accusations, resulting in the need for a court to be convened. (Thanks for the link, Clown!)

In France, I expect this will work quite well, for the ghost of Pierre Poujade still happily stalks that unfortunate land which continues to need his services, and the State-motorist-fining-system could be toppled. France, after all, has a history of successful revolutions, driven from below: although we cannot always be positive about the results – look at 1789……However, as France is not, and never has been, a democracy in the liberal English classical pluralist sense that we understand the term to mean, this kind of blown-safety-valve-release-mechanism is part of how laws are made or unmade in that polity. Yes, grillions of French motorists will try this methid of overloading the justice system regarding speeding. It will b fun.

But in Britain, our problem is that we’ve been so non-violent and so used to “The Rule Of Law” for so long, that we confuse “laws” with “Law”. We have forgotten how to behave unreasonably and violently towards bureaucracy-toerags who think they can say frankly that they can decide what the “law” is. I don’t think there are what Chris Tame called “enough people to make a difference” left in Britain.

So the idea will not take off here, and Clown’s pessimism is not misplaced. But I remain to hope to be surprised.

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4 responses to “French speeding fine challenges: the strategic problem of British Libertarianism is that we are not Poujadists.

  1. Steven Northwood

    I think that’s absolutely spot-on David, regarding the Anglo-French comparison.

  2. Gosh Steven that was quick!

    I’ve only just re-edited it online…..

  3. Steven Northwood

    Ah well, you know… :-)

  4. I was so taken aback by the title (“The Strategic Problem is that we are not Poujadistes”) that I was unable to read the text.

    It’s as if I’d read a headline sayong “The strategic problem of Israel is that we are not all Moslem Arabs” says Israeli Prime Minister.

    Perhaps you meant to say that not enough of us are into Civil Disobedience.

    Weeeeelllll, yes, but…

    Happy New Year!

    Tony