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London/English Riots

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Rothgo View Post
    Interesting piece in the BBC's magazine section IMHO:

    Many questions, some POVs, no answers, but interesting none-the-less.
    Right, this is what I felt when I wrote of " spontaneous, tribe-like alliances who go burning and looting. Then they all go home."

    It boils down to the buzz, he says. "It's an excitement. You can't take away that thrill - the roar of the crowd. That sense of a group of men, something's happening."
    Great assessment, I think. But what to do?
    Last edited by L'Etranger; 08-09-2011, 11:45 AM.
    Google ergo sum


    • #17
      Mmm...wonder why its not kicked off yet in Scotland...
      "I hate to advocate drugs,alcohol,violence or insanity to anyone,but they've always worked for me"

      Hunter S Thompson


      • #18
        Mmm...wonder why its not kicked off yet in Scotland...

        Because by the time they've finished their buckfast they're too drunk to do anything else?

        Or perhaps the Scottish Parliament has sheltered young people from some of the cuts that are happening in England, which means the youth do not feel quite so disenfranchised and angry.


        • #19
          I think the riots will be calming down now, though I should check the news later.

          The riots were strange and pointless. It seems to be a new form of economic rioting - the non-political riot - hopefully not something we will see more of!! Or is all rioting a politically act even if the rioters themselves dont really know why they riot?

          Its like someone switched on a pyschomat machine!!

          I hope something good comes from the ashes of this event, cos somethings gonna change now doubt.
          Please Check out my Musical Dedication to work of Michael Moorcock

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          • #20
            I have a feeling these events will have very long legs. The ostensible spark was the police shooting of a man who may or may not have been armed. That happens too often around here to be more than a local issue. I get the feeling armed criminals and armed police may be becoming the norm in Britain.

            The police seem to have taken a course aimed at keeping casualties to a minimum, which I think is very characteristic of Britain too. Too many Boston/Armritsar/Bloody Sunday Massacres in the past, the UK has learned the lesson well. Question is, have they learned it too well? What if the other side just considers that weakness? What about an increasingly impatient public? I've been hearing reports of self-defense groups springing up in Turkish & Sikh areas as well as mixed neighborhoods in Enfield.

            Can't say what the rioters are thinking, they are acting, not talking. Their acts seem pretty much about immediate goals, loot, destruction, & aggro. Even if someone were asking them what they want, who'd answer?

            What I'm wondering is will this mean a long term turn to much harsher policing? Even more restrictions on civil liberties? If there's some link between cuts to social services, will there be a backlash, in effect "why spend money on an underclass who burns down their own neighborhoods?"

            No answers here, just questions.
            Dave Hardy

            My books: Crazy Greta, Tales of Phalerus the Achaean, and Palmetto Empire.



            • #21
              I'm observing this from afar, of course, and lack real experience of British culture. But, it seems to me that more than one revolution has been born of the mob (usually subsequently commandeered by intellectual and military elites). Paris comes to mind - The Jacobins and then Napoleon. I tend to think what we will see over here is increasing disaffection by a large sector of the population. It's bad policy to build a social order on consumer/materialism, then lock people out through unemployment. You're asking for envy and class hostility. Now, these guys are lousy bunch. They're scaring normal people in their own homes, burning, and looting. I'm fairly liberal on the topic of burning and looting. In fact, Marley's Burning and Looting Tonight is one of my favorite tunes. But, things don't seem as bad in the UK, at least from here, as in Trenchtown. By the same token, I don't buy this expensive trainers and smartphone critique. Those babies are the real problem. Modern totems built by overworked child slave labor. Large telecom and hardware companies raking in the profits and turning a blind eye on their governmental joint-venture
              partners in places like Indonesia turning firehouses on 11 year olds marching peacefully for more than a buck for 16 hour day. I hope you don't have to worry about the cops being overwhelmed. The other option that our Yank news said Cameron considered was deploying the military. Why the fk don't politicians want to accept that tariffs are the way out? The only ones who get taxed our multi-nationals and it could rebuild the manufacturing sectors on both sides of the pond. That, of course, would not jive with the myth of
              supply-side, trickle down economics. But, it would mean jobs. And that would mean a greater tax base. It would also mean a lesser drain of social resources. If we were really smart, we would do it coupled with a public works program to develop and implement a green energy infrastructure. In 20 years, when China and the rest can't squeeze blood out of a dead dinosaur, we would rock.
              Last edited by Kevin McCabe; 08-09-2011, 10:30 PM.
              Kevin McCabe
              The future is there, looking back at us. Trying to make sense of the fiction we will have become. William Gibson


              • #22
                It is industrial scale shoplifting.

                As one commentators said you could see the young people suddenly realising that they can put a stone through a shop window and just take what they want. Then followed up by a 'yoof' who says why not take what you want, who going to stop them? If he gets caught, he will get a caution as it is a first offence.

                I think the 'military' option was just talk and should be taken with a pinch of salt. As Gordon Brown didn't want to go down as the man who broke the banks, I can't see Cameron wanting to go down as the man who had to call the army out.

                I am sure we will see a u-turn on police resourcing and maybe on the army too.

                Meanwhile, I want to get back to the phone hacking scandal and nailing Piers Morgan and the Guardian reports whom appear to have been indulging in interests that are not necessarily public.

                Update - The Test Match is on!
                Last edited by Pebble; 08-09-2011, 10:27 PM. Reason: Update
                Papa was a Rolling Stone......


                • #23
                  You know, I actually find it scarier that it switched to Manchester. It's a more political town. Did they burn police stations in London? The news over here reports that they are burning them in Manchester, Salford, and Birmingham.
                  Your right, though. As Brother Mosley alluded to earlier, our attention seems to get diverted a lot these days. Ultimately, Murdoch is a bigger threat and he has just quietly tipped out the back door.
                  Kevin McCabe
                  The future is there, looking back at us. Trying to make sense of the fiction we will have become. William Gibson


                  • #24
                    There's nothing political about this Kevin. These are not disaffected youths rioting to express their anger at being excluded from the wealth of society. They are opportunist thieves breaking into other people's businesses and stealing things they can drink, smoke or sell.

                    The police feel powerless to do anything because they have been neutered by the press and politicians. Every time there has been any sort of social or civic unrest in the UK in the last 10 years the police response, whatever it has been, has been criticised.

                    Kettling is extremely effective but has been deemed illegal as it breaches peoples' human rights. Using night sticks and batons to control violent people is considered over the top, especially when the impact is exaggerated by the camera crew filming the incident over the rioter's shoulder. They have been told that water cannon and plastic bullets are unavailable so they now have no effective means of crowd control.

                    God, I sound like the Daily Mail! I'm going back to bed.


                    • #25
                      When are these thugs and vandals going to be dealt with with the harshness that their deeds and actions merit?


                      Andrew Gimson, biographer of Boris Johnson, reported about the club in the 1980s: "I don't think an evening would have ended without a restaurant being trashed and being paid for in full, very often in cash. [...] A night in the cells would be regarded as being par for a Buller man and so would debagging anyone who really attracted the irritation of the Buller men."[15]

                      Dinners in recent years, being relatively low key, have not attracted press attention, though in 2005, following damage to a 15th century pub in Oxfordshire during a dinner, four members of the party were arrested; the incident was widely reported.[16] A further dinner was reported in 2010 after damage to a country house. [17] [18]

                      In the last few years the Bullingdon has been mentioned in the debates of the House of Commons in order to draw attention to excessive behaviour across the British class spectrum,[19] and to embarrass those increasingly prominent MPs who are former members of the Bullingdon. These most notably include David Cameron (UK Prime Minister), George Osborne (UK Chancellor of the Exchequer) and Boris Johnson (Mayor of London). ...
                      Never mind the rhetoric, their deeds and actions show them up for what they are. Never mind, their wealth, their positions of power and responsibility, or their posh accents. In reality, they stand side by side with the rioting, looting, vandals, in common purpose, in their attack on the society that fostered them. As things stand, the rioters,vandals and looters out there on the streets don't have much of a stake in that society, or much of a future. These Bullingdon chaps don't have that excuse.


                      • #26
                        I've been so angry about seeing my city under attack that I haven't wanted to write anything until now.

                        While there are obviously root political causes somewhere down the line that have led to society being so damaged, anyone trying to dignify this as some sort of 'Arab Spring'-style mass social awakening is barking up the wrong tree.

                        There's clearly disenfranchisement etc at play, but that's certainly not going through the mind of the looters who have been at work in London and other cities. The motivations have been nothing but theft, financial gain and the thrill of destruction.

                        The most interesting and enlightening bit of commentary I've seen on the rioting so far has come from the admirable Camila Batmanghelidjh in The Independent, who does a fine job of explaining what's going on without trying to justify it.


                        To write off what's going on as 'mindless' violence is like trying to sweep it under the carpet. All of those obnoxious little scrotes out there made a choice to be there and to do what they're doing - it's important for the future to try and figure out what informed those choices.
                        Last edited by Tom Murphy; 08-10-2011, 12:56 AM.


                        • #27
                          I've alluded to it previously but what the hey; I'll say it somewhat more blatently: we seem to have fragmented our society to the point there are now a significant number of people who can fairly be referred to as paracitic. Not nice but there it is. What to do then?


                          • #28
                            But on a lighter note:


                            • #29
                              Everything is political, and you have a problem with your caste system. From the sound of it you will likely take the path of the USA and give your cops more and more guns.


                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Tom Murphy View Post

                                There's clearly disenfranchisement etc at play, but that's certainly not going through the mind of the looters who have been at work in London and other cities. The motivations have been nothing but theft, financial gain and the thrill of destruction.

                                That could be a description of the the rioters, looters and vandals on the streets, or in the banks, stock exchanges and related financial institutions, around the World. Only one of these two groups will be expecting big bonuses as reward for their actions.