Showing posts from September, 2013

Customs officers

There maybe a border control or customs officer reading this blog, who knows.  I have to ask, why are UK borders and customs officers always so bloody miserable?

I went to France last weekend - FRANCE reputed to be the rudest country in Europe by some - and yet the customs officer bade my family and I a happy "bon jour" and cheerfully wished us a pleasant stay in his country.  I've been to France a few times and mostly they are always reasonably cheerful.

I was in Germany a year or so back and despite my stupidly buying a novel to take with a big swastika on the cover the border man was pleasant, albeit a little surprised.

I've visited Slovenia, Austria, Slovakia, Latvia, Estonia, Spain and Poland where everybody we met was pleasant.

In the USA even the stern border control officer managed a smile when he realised I wasn't a terrorist merely English.

Yet no matter how many times I go away I always have to come back and every time I do I'm met with a difficult…

Drunk tanks

When I heard on the radio yesterday that Adrian Lee (who he? - he a member of the Association of Chief Police Officers) had called for drunk tanks to be established in rowdy city centres I initially wondered where they would find all these tanks for drunks to drive and whether that would be such a good idea anyway.

In the event, I realised that Mr Lee had only a slightly worse idea.

What this chap actually wants is slightly unclear if I'm honest.  Sounds simple at first: cells are not the place for drunks so we'll set up some cells to put drunks in and then charge them for the stay.  But when you think for a minute what he's actually proposing is slightly harder to implement.

Mr Lee said, "I do not see why the police service or the health service should pick up the duty of care for someone who has chosen to go out and get so drunk that they cannot look after themselves."  My answer to that is, "well because that is one of the reasons they both exist" but w…

Let's make Parliament more like us

I have occasionally ranted about MP’s in this blog and today will be no different.
A part of me thinks that anybody who actively wishes to enter politics should be excluded from entering politics, although I also appreciate that this is probably unlikely to happen.
One of my big problems with politics is the lack of real-world experience enjoyed by many MP’s these days whose career seems to involve a politics degree, followed by a few years as a researcher for an MP or working at party HQ followed by standing for election themselves.  These people have absolutely no idea how their policies work in the real, everyday world that the rest of us inhabit.
I’m sure that most of them aren’t the evil world-domination lizard types dressed in human skin that they often appear to be… although I am sure some are actual lizards in human skin.  I’m sure some go  into politics because they want to better the world and help people.  Most seem to regard the political fight portrayed in shows like The…

It's just a little miscarriage of justice so who really cares?

Miscarriages of justice aren’t always big news involving somebody spending years in prison for a crime they didn’t commit. Often they are the minor cases that nobody but the people involved care about.
I'll let you into a secret... there's almost certainly a good few miscarriages of justice every single day in the English courts.  They are usually for relatively "minor" offences and happen to people who either don't care because of they have drink, drug or psychiatric problems.  The other big group are those who cannot afford to fight - the justice lacuna.
Most solicitors will have come across the defendant who pleads guilty while maintaining their innocence.  The reasons for pleading guilty are as diverse as the people who make “false” guilty pleas.  I’ve seen everyone from drug-addicts clucking so badly that all they can think about is getting out of the cells to get another hit and very highly educated professionals pleading guilty simply because they are sca…