Saturday, 27 February 2010

Have We Become a Police State?

The sale of tobacco is legal in the UK and the main beneficiary is the Treasury. Yet, the use of tobacco is severely restricted, so much so that if you break the law you go to jail. We're all aware of this, so much so that smokers are now treated as would-be criminals.

Nick Hogan, 43, was sentenced to six months in prison for refusing to pay a fine imposed for flouting the legislation. A judge fined Hogan, of Chorley, Lancashire, £3,000 and ordered him to pay £7,236 in costs after finding him guilty of four charges under the Health Act 2006. Mr Hogan informed customers, in the two pubs he used to own, they had the freedom to choose whether or not to smoke.

If you're a Labour peer and were involved in an accident which left a man dead on the M1 in South Yorkshire, you serve 16 days in jail.

The anti-smoking lobby, ASH, is committed to stamping out smoking in this country. The government funds ASH. What I don't understand is why the government doesn't make smoking illegal then ASH could be disbanded, thus saving the taxpayer millions. Or is it preferable to keep the balance as it is, thus tobacco taxation continues and fines are a welcome addition to the government's coffers?

Have we become a police state - another, all too frequent, example of the invasion of our privacy. Do watch the video and decide for yourself.


scunnert said...

Is the UK a police state? Well of course it is if the police have the power to stop and search you, or detain for 28 days without any reason or charge. They can stop you from entering a town or prevent you from leaving again without reason or charge. They can even shoot you dead on suspicion alone and get away with it.

Aye - polis state.

TheBigYin said...

I have met Nick Hogan a few times now and he has been a good friend to Freedom2Choose, a gentle man who would not hurt a fly. I put together a video a couple of years back about our smoking ban heros: which featured the man, amongst others.

You can imagine my surprise when the vid was pulled from Facebook in a matter of hours yesterday:

See also

Apogee said...

Seems all this is coming from the top.
At the top is the organisation that enacted this legislation ,HM government.
Next is ACPO, a private company in charge of the Police forces, then it all filters down to the ranks, sometimes those doing the filtering ,do it wrong.
It has as much to do with bad management as heavy handed police.
Let us at least get the management and the managers right, after all, we the people employed (elected) them, so let us get it right this time?

Dark Lochnagar said...

Rosie, for God's sake I'm surprised you even have to ask the question. Of course we live in a police state. The Terrorism malarky is all designed to keep us 'down', quiet and obedient whilst we thank our great Government for keeping us safe. It's a load of bollox.

subrosa said...

Very frightening Scunnert. I'm so glad I don't live in a city. Rural police seem ok - at present anyway.

subrosa said...

Morning BigYin. Thank you for the links. I'm sure I've seen your video but I'll check that.

Doesn't surprise me it was pulled from Facebook. Social media are having a hard time with the tentacles of control stretching out to them.

subrosa said...

Morning Apogee. I would have felt distinctly intimidated if the police spoke to me like that. Can we do anything right?

subrosa said...

DL, tucked away here in my wee bit of paradise I don't experience bullying police - except the traffic police but that's another story.

It is bollox. I've keep telling you our military aren't keeping is safe, they're just getting themselves killed.

JRB said...

The extensive powers granted under the Terrorism Act are an affront to any so-called democratic society.

They allow local authorities to spy on the community lest their dogs be caught fouling the pavements; and grant to the police unlimited powers to stop, search and detain anyone for any reason. All they need do is quote the relevant section of the Terrorism Act.
Even if you are found to be entirely innocent, since the ‘stop’ was conducted under the Terrorism Act, the police are entitled to keep full records of that ‘stop’ and your details on file.

For years we thought the Stasi of the DDR were abusive, the Terrorism Act offers our authorities such powers that would have made the Stasi green with envy.

And yes, like you Subrosa my local rural bobby is a ‘well kent face’. I know, and am ages with, his parents, and have watched him grow from a youngster; but I should not forget this nice young loon has available to him the same extensive legal powers.

subrosa said...

It is quite frightening the developments in the reduction of our freedom John and yes, I don't forget that the 'nice man in blue' could easily turn into my accuser.

Crinkly & Ragged Arsed Philosophers said...

Damn it - the wilderness is getting crowded with dissidents against state control.

What are the control freaks going to do when their pens are overflowing with anarchic, democratic, freedom loving junkies instead of the battery lobotomised broilers they'd hoped for?

To cull or not to cull may be the only question?pyrona

Dick Puddlecote said...

I have my pitchfork and petrol-soaked torch ready. How 'bout you, Rosie?

TheBigYin said...

I remember, Subrosa, when I was a wee boy living in the coocaddense what it was like to be 'clipped' around the ear for being a fookin' idiot youth.

As a 57yo I'm still an idiot but need that'clout around the ear' sometimes rather than the hand of the 'made up' law. But I guess that that there is no money in a clout around the ear, is there.

FREE NICK HOGAN, if you can do it for a fictional charactor like Dierdre Barlow you can do it for a genuine miscarage of justice like Nicks ffs?

subrosa said...

RA, I read this blog earlier:

As far as I can see nobody was ever charged with homicide.

subrosa said...

I've my claymore in the garage Dick. It'll need a lick of paint as it was made as a prop not as a weapon. Well done though, so it does look the part.

subrosa said...

I remember being clipped round the ear too BY, it's a wunner ma heid points forward!

I'm hoping other folks will join the Free Nick Hogan too. I did yesterday.

Crinkly & Ragged Arsed Philosophers said...

Rosa -The Pale Horse by Euan Taylor is the book you want to read.
Regards RA.

subrosa said...

Thank you RA. I'll see if the library can get it, if not I'll buy it. Will go and find the ISDN number now.

Idle Pen Pusher said...

Yes - but the tobacco smoking stuff is no great change... it follows on from a whole raft of other substances you're not allowed to smoke, ingest or snort.

Psychedlic mushrooms, ketamine and GHB are the most recent. GBL and other "legal highs" are next...

subrosa said...

Somewhere I read diazapan was listed too IPP. Soon it'll be milk. But of course they told us years ago full cream milk was bad for us.

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