The Landed Underclass published this yesterday. On the basis several other bloggers and we here think it’s astonishingly perceptive, it will probably go viral on the interweb thingy before long. But with Sir’s permission, we happily republish it in full and unedited here:-
©The Landed Underclass, http://landedunderclass.wordpress.com 2009
BLATANCY AWARD (live linked back in title, for originator)
The Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo) has approved a new generation of cameras that are linked wirelessly and operate in clusters, meaning that speeding drivers will be caught whichever route they take across a wide area… they read numberplates automatically and transmit data instantly to a penalty-processing centre… They are harder to vandalise than Gatso cameras because they are suspended from arms on six-metre poles.
Quite apart from the vandalism aspect (ain’t any of you all heard of a lariat?) there is the usual difficulty.
Valley Bottom is a sedate bit of road, and only about six feet wide by the sheep field, but it is not a cul-de-sac. Once in a while one of the local youths drives along it, as fast as he possibly can, a rusty Citroën Saxo (or it might be a Fiat Punto; all this car talk is really rather soiling, isn’t it?), its intrinsic gasps, rattles, squeaks and waterpump scarcely competing with the exhaust, which instead of a silencer now has part of an euphonium attached to it, and the stereo, the alternator loading of which being the reason why the car can manage no more than 58mph (at 139dB(A)/10m).
Because the driver has (as is his wont) omitted such petit-bourgeois poltroonery as insurance, driving licence and vehicle registration, it will not matter if he is on every visit tracked from low Earth orbit by some huge American spy satellite. Nothing will happen to him; it never does, thanks, no doubt, to his customary precaution of having different number plates, stolen from different cars, on each end of his ungentleman’s conveyance.
The big disadvantages of speed humps as a ‘rat-running deterrent’, or whatever, are that they cost only a modest amount to install (and generate work only for council mateys, not for shadowy surveillance-and-security companies run as sidelines, via holding companies in Switzerland and the Cayman Islands, by members of ACPO, as if policemen would ever do such a thing; for shame), they don’t generate a revenue-stream for anyone, and they might even impede official vehicles.
That the tired old chestnut of ‘global warming’ has to be trotted out to defend this desperate fundraiser probably indicates roughly how blatant it is.
More lamp-posts, more piano wire! Will there be enough?
If I may say so: typical young software chap; lives in a dream world. Just you try attaching anything, my lad, let alone piano wire, to any of this modern streamlined, aluminium, low-pressure-sodium type municipal street lighting. If it doesn’t slide straight off then the wretched thing will simply buckle. What we simian, brachiating, favourite-spanner-dragging hardware types call ‘not man enough for the job’.
If this lynch-mob thing is going to work someone is going to have to do one of those GPS-assisted surveys about where to find the surviving proper, traditional, ladder-bracket-equipped, cast-iron Victorian gas-standards, with, given the nature of the beast, an SWL of about 3cwt or so (as opposed to tacky, undersized imitations thereof made in China out of monkey-metal and sold in Bodgitt & Quickley’s to people with plastic Georgian porticos, self-adhesive bullseye windowpanes and fairtrade garden gnomes), and someone else is going to have to organise some kind of booking system, doubtless computerised, for their use, otherwise it’ll be complete chaos when the time comes.
Personally I’m opposed to capital punishment. Such a waste in a case like this, when many hours of harmless family televisual entertainment (and/or a very popular website) could be had from little cameras covering the Jobcentres patronised by our erstwhile ‘leaders’. Their answers to the inevitable questions about ‘aptitudes’ might even be worth putting on the side of a bus.