shifting responsibility

Look at it at very basic principles. The Conservative government wants to get rid of any government led service provision and shift the responsibilities for everything onto the private individual.

That principle is what led to a recent tribunal decision whereby leaseholders of a block of flats lost and have to foot the bill for £3.000.000 worth of cladding removal, fire patrols and developers legal fees.

photo of green leaf potted plants on window and stand

Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

It is simply this principle of transferring everything from government to individuals, the principle of personal freedom and less taxes for all, that makes the indivduals pay.

Previously and post-war we had council estates, provided by local authorities, maintained and paid for and rented out.

I remember on our estate, the first flats for sale went for £5.000 for a 2 bedroom flat. Crazy prices. After that prices went gradually up to £5.000 for a 3-bedroom flat and now the prices are at £300.000 and rising for small flats.

But the difference is that every leaseholder is still responsible or all the costs of the block.

When I go to a residents meeting, most attendees are leaseholders and proud to be so but all are complaining about their costs. Apparently most of our Labour councillors are also all leaseholders of flats. So there is little difference in the Labour and Conservative activities.

It used to be Labour pro council housing and pro renting out. Now it’s all a mish-mash of ill-thought out policies and practises.

It simply is not working and people are deeply unhappy about the whole situation.

Nobody seems to practise what they preach anymore. There are no clear lines.

Obviously the sale of council flats has made living more expensive for everyone and raised the stress-levels. So why do it?

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Austerity and privatisation don’t match

It is more than stupid from this modern Conservative government to introduce more privatisation whilst at the same time driving us further into austerity. Only a well developing economy can support more and more privatisation but privatisation can never prosper under austerity because private firms rely on profits and if they do not make profits, they cannot deliver service.

The latest attempts to further dismantle pensions are a clear proof of this. Care for disabled and elderly people has clearly deteriorated in private homes. The alternative suggested by Duncan Smith and his pals is to dismantle pensions as we know them as well and have the very old looked after by the elderly. I feel sorry for the very old already.

Just imagine what type of patchy care a very old and frail person would receive if looked after by an elderly person who themselves have greater health-care needs.

It has been established for around 200 years in the western world, and we were promised by the governments, that if we pay our 1st class, 2nd class or so contributions then we get a pension from age 60 – 65. That was then slowly dismantled by starting to close the age gap between men and women and now there is a suggestion to get rid of pensions altogether by making old people volunteer for their pensions.

Has Great Britain become a rip-off society? Clearly it is a simple breach of contract to promise people a pension if they pay insurance contributions or stamps as they are also known by, in exchange for a pension when they then don’t get a pension.

I think pensioners would have a case asking for their money back if they get their pension cut off despite having paid their contributions over their lifetime and then get their pensions reduced or cut off for any reason other than not having paid enough contributions.

Unfortunately Iain Duncan Smith is the driving force behind that move, he is currently in charge of Works and Pensions and one of the few ministers that escapes a change in the recent cabinet re-shuffle.

Of course we see also that complaints about health services have soared since health care has been partly privatised, since the NHS has been slowly dismantled and we have seen whole health care trusts going deep into the red. What is the cause of our care problems is not only increasing old age, it is the privatisation of services, lets just be clear about that.

The naked prince of Las Vegas

Obviously the person who took those pictures must be familiar to Prince Harry, as I do not suppose that this nakedness happened in a crowded room full of people but it rather looks like an intimate little party to me. The pictures have been carefully selected to cover up the lady but show the prince in a relatively modest pose. I am sure there are much more naughty snaps.

Is public nakedness now in fashion? The judge dealing with the naked rambler doesn’t think so and kept him behind bars, under lock and key pending a psychiatric assessment. Stephen Gough now has an argument in that it has become acceptable to show yourself of naked in public in one form or another whether on the street like he does or in pictorial form like Prince Harry does.

Of course the Sun is desperate to sell papers, in the light of plenty of free reading material laying around like Metro and Evening Standard.

The fight for the reader’s money bring papers to more risk taking and we are confronted with increasing nakedness and private stuff. Thanks for sparing us toilet pictures and the like.

I do not want to compare Prince Harry with Stephen Gough, I want to compare our society with Stephen Gough. We want to see naked bodies, Stephen shows it and we can’t wait to see more.

Of course good old Mary Whitehouse knew that this would happen and she was booed on many occasions for trying to prevent the obvious. Ever since nuns threw away their veils society has become more hungry for the flesh.

The probably ensuing legal case between the Palace and News International might help to define the meaning of privacy or what we really need to see as the public these days. But then the old Greeks had no problem with the naked torso; ;look at the beautiful statues.

The fantasy that ensues the onlookers mind is their problem isn’t it? Obviously not every person gets the same emotional reactions when they look at naked flesh surely it is very much an individual’s thing.

The right to delete data

I think it is a good move that people  have the right to get their data deleted of some databases, rather than things being kept forever. In Germany for example, the authorities delete court files after 30 years.

We have internet sites that archive websites without owner’s consent and any accidental publication can be seen online forever. It is not fruitful so far to write to these people because they just ignore your request to remove stuff from their site.

If you jot down a draft on paper, you can always bin it, but if its done on the Internet, your draft can be seen forever, even if it was not meant to be final and was actually wrong.

Bye blogging for now

Having had a chance to recuperate my damaged grey cells in the wonderful fresh air of a British country-retreat, I feel that I no longer can even afford the time to blog, once I return to my London home. As we can see, less and less local business is available to work for but the government has asked me to get a job. Incidentally, single parents make up the highest percentage of the unemployed people at the moment. That is because changed government regulations force single parents to sign on as unemployed as soon as their child turns 7.

Life has become so expensive that I cannot even afford the time to play Facebook games any longer because I have to spend my time finding work, doing money-saving tricks like making food myself instead of buying ready-meals.

By the way, I do not at all engage in any type of politics also because I cannot afford this any longer. I do not support any political figure unless they offer me paid work. So far I just walked down heels giving our leaflets, another price I cannot afford at the moment, being unemployed. Benefit recipients who are on the bread line should get free party memberships to allow democratic participation but the state doesn’t think that democracy is worth funding.

Blogging also takes a lot of time and I feel it is not the right media to spill out my often complex thoughts, which I only hint instead of explaining properly. So to avoid confusion, I won’t spill the thoughts any longer but instead try to do knitting, sewing and other crafts that help me save on household costs because we are being encouraged to save for our old age, which is approaching fast.

Who checks up on police officers?

Don’t we all trust a police officer in uniform? It often brings about a sigh of relief when we are stressed out, frightened about yobs and we see a man in a police uniform strolling down the street to make us feel good. The opposite is of course the case if you are a criminal, then a man in police uniform will make you stressed out and you have to start calming yourself.

Yet who polices the police? Who ensures that wearers of the sanctified uniform are actually authorised to do so and that those who are authorised to wear it are actually fit and lawful citizens?

Whilst we are constantly told in the media that police are good and we need them, and that we need more of them, we are also told that all News of the World reporters are dubious people but the real statistics of phone hacking are not so often told in the press. But this nice little article from Inforrms Blog shows us that the police are quite naughty officers. There have been

  • 243 Police officers and staff received criminal convictions for breaching the Data Protection Act (DPA).
  • 98 Police officers and staff had their employment terminated for breaching the DPA.
  • 904 Police officers and staff were subjected to internal disciplinary procedures for breaching the DPA.

Obviously the News of the World reporters didn’t act isolated and in those circumstances the whole culture of police and press working together must be put into question.

I had heard somewhere that police also sell information to third parties about accidents so that insurance companies for example can benefit from it. That is most likely why I constantly get calls that I have not yet claimed the compensation on a car accident I had, just that I have never had a car accident.

We simply see that the police itself needs better monitoring. What police do now is they use profiling as a tactic to know more about us but what is being done with that information? In sthat context to know that 100.000 people are interviewed for Olympic volunteering posts is more than ridiculous but that is part of the profiling operation, I suspect, that currently goes on in Britain. Getting to know your customers is not only a successful commercial but also police tool. I reckon those profiles Olympic interviewers collect will go into police databases.

This needless collection of personal information over job interviews should be unlawful because it collects information about people simply for the purpose of knowing about their habits, a sort of habitual DNA.

Society today is all about control, prevention of the unexpected but that just gets breached time after time as we can unfortunately learn more and more often. The Norwegian killer is said to have been captured alive. That is very hard to belief, such gunners usually get killed or kill themselves. We are told that his reasons will be explained to the judge, but can we really belief that what we are going to get to read is really what the motives of that man are? Usually terrorists just either don’t cooperate with the justice system or make sure they cannot be interrogated.

I am more than reluctant to belief what we get to digest with the press reports about that.

But unfortunately the public propaganda machine get more and more corrupted by media that wish to steer our thoughts in certain directions, as the above quoted example on the hacking story shows. We get told what we are supposed to think but the underlying truth hardly ever comes out or one has to research very hard to get it.

So who does check up on police officers? Once they are in the job they seem to be sanctified persons who are in charge of huge intelligence network and they can use and abuse them. Every benefit recipient constantly has to justify their bank accounts to  the Department of World and Pension when they are self-employed for example but police officers never have to justify their personal finances to anybody. The whole principle of officer selection is rather racist as well. Years ago all police officers had to be tall, that’s why now most ancient officers are really towering above the rest of us. Now they can be shorter as long as they are not dwarfed but still they have to have good eyesight. But now not even volunteers can be older than 57. They gotten rid of the gay discrimination. Now the police service is getting more secret and it is harder to become an officer but those who are in the job seem to be able to manipulate quite a lot of things.

The gathering of personal intelligence over job interviews and local enquiries is the latest tactic. What any police volunteer must do is give a DNA sample, that is another method to collect and store DNA samples of people. It is very important to keep public order and to ensure supplies are kept flowing so that society can function in an orderly fashion but it is not clear to me that selection processes for jobs are entirely fair and in the best public interest.

Since there are quite a lot of naughty police officers about or persons could be impersonating officers I think it is most wise to question whether anyone who wears such a uniform is indeed entitled to do so. Unfortunately in the case of armed police one might not get the chance to ask for the papers of such ‘officers’.

Strauss-Kahn case near collapse

I am very careful about the contents of press reports about ongoing cases and so far only welcomed the fact that accusations of sexual misdemeanour are being taken seriously and not even prominent politicians are safe from investigation but now feel a bit disturbed to learn the further facts in the Strauss-Kahn case.

To be honest my first thought when I read about the Strauss-Kahn arrest some while ago was that it could be a stitch up to discredit a political opponent of some sort.

I recently had some experience with immigrant workers of some sort myself and could not help noticing the discrepancies in how spoken words had been falsely written down and that things were made up to make a story.

When I now read that the maid previously lied on an immigration application about a rape that on her own admittance, did not happen, I felt all my hair stand up at once, and my hair is quite long at the moment. What is a job description of a hotel maid and is it not very much a matter of what happens when a hotel maid is in a room between the guest(s) and the maid present at any moment in time.

Reading that the maid cleaned another room before she reported the alleged offence, sounds a bit strange to me, reading that she previously lied and admitted to have lied about a rape in her immigration papers makes me say to all women out there: Never use sexual accusations, never allow a man to touch you if you do not want to be touched, always keep your distance if you do not want to get physically involved.

The fact of the matter is that consent is something that happens at the beginning of a relationship. If you allow a man to touch your thigh, then of course a sexual consent is already given at that time because you allow the man to touch your body.

On the other hand many men are sex addicts, they get carried away and do not know when to stop. So just to be on the safe side, women should not allow the first step to help induce other follow on incidents. That of course does not include professional women like actresses who have to have physical contact of some sort. I also do not think that light dresses allow physical invasion but think that where a physical advancement has been taken without proper preparation and consent that there is a good case to investigate a complaint fully.

It brings men of the world down to earth when they read that one of their fellow members has been taken out of their daily routine for a sex crime investigation.

yet for women please remember not to abuse your privileges and justice by manipulating justice by bringing claims of sexual misbehaviour to get your way, may that be for immigration or other purposes.

I wonder whether there is a point in bringing in a rule that men have to have written permission before they can have sex with a woman, wouldn’t that prevent many a lovechild from  being conceived and born?

Friendly Facebook

I read this story about a Facebook user who complaint that some abuse her photos for fetish purposes and Facebook gave the advice to block such users or only to connect with friends.

That I think is in direct contradiction of the very purpose of such a social networking site that thrives on widespread use. Many people say they get friends suggestions for people they do not know as a sideline of advertising. Facebook wants people to have as many friends as possible.

There are competitions, which game attracts the most users and is most sociable. In fact many games require as many friends as possible to even get the numerous chores completed free of charge. If one doesn’t have friends to help one has to pay to get enough of each item required to make something. That is the same on many games like FarmVille, FrontierVille, Yoville and many, many more.

I think the ‘only friends’ strategy makes a person paranoid because one gets suspicious who really is behind a profile. Indeed some use pics that do not belong to them and others copy profiles.

I do not think one can play a game on Facebook without many friends, so the privacy constraints are really only workable for those with lots of money to complete games or those who do not want to play the games.

Facebook is really just as anonymous as the streets or public spaces we live in. If others use pics without permission there are always the copyright laws that can be used to claim compensation of someone using another’s picture without consent. That will put people off from using them.

In the case of special circumstances or features of a person; it can make a person feel as if they only attract others because of their special features and that can become quite demeaning when it is a disfigurement. It is in public perception good attention when people talk about others for being beautiful but not for having something missing and something perceived to not be beautiful. But in the end one cannot stop others from being obsessed about something whether on Facebook or elsewhere. As long as there is no personal harassment, its live and let live.

The fact is one cannot command people what they have to feel and think when they see some image, person or object and that everybody is free to harbour his own thoughts. Of course as soon as something is pictorially manifested, it can be reproduced and it seems this manifestation is deeply ingrained in today’s society in that people like pictures rather than words. One could say we live in an icon-society.

On Facebook many avoid being ridiculed by simply not using their own pictures and they put on pics of their dogs instead or some bizarre figures or distorted photo. Yet the sheer and vast size of the Internet, the billions of websites, it is a little bit hard-going trying to pursue everyone who abuses a picture, it is very expensive and time consuming too. People always form all types of interest groups and counter interest groups as well as therapeutic groups. It’s hard to imagine though how anybody can get a kick out of lost or missing limbs, so its good that the BBC came to the rescue oft those who suffered.

The dialectic of Justice

I am surprised that Mr Justice Eady made that judgment in the football privacy case after all the arguments I brought before the court in my own cases, which I lost. I provided the court with lots of evidences about how electronic communications and communications networks function and how users can be established and the arguments came that whatever was written was fair comment. I evidenced also and so did many before me that communications work on different channels (Lennox Lewis case), a bit like the old-fashioned village gossip really. Can anyone stop people from talking about something?

Word goes around and does not stop at certain borders but one should expect that facts stay facts really. It is not a question about the facts in the footballer case, which is different from my own cases. In my own cases the facts were disputed but this is not so in the footballer privacy case.

I heard only yesterday who that footballer allegedly was because it was on the BBC website and I usually only get wind of things once its on the BBC. The Scottish Herald argues that Scotland is not within English jurisdiction, quite right but why was that Injunction granted in the first place.

In my view its because justice always worked to defend the rich and those who can afford it even if it is a little bit silly. If it bothers someone really a lot and they are willing to spend a lot of money on it then justice will serve that person. Of course I also argued in my case about seeking Judicial Review that this principle “We are all the same under the law” was only invented so that the rich could be prosecuted for the same crimes as the poor but that was not properly digested by the court.

Especially in cases where there is no legal aid the courts are only willing to find for those who can afford the best lawyers for th longest amount of time and of course footballers can really spend the most money on anything.There is some very pungent case law that proves that cases were only continued because litigants could proof they can pay costs and those cases where then won by those who could afford to pay costs; the case of Prince Radu is the best example.

That is why this silly judgment came about that really doesn’t make sense especially not as the story seems to be true. How can anybody stop people from talking about something that is true?

I posted about this before, if people do not want people talking about their sexual behaviour they should simply not exercise that sexual behaviour. It is the oldest story on earth that the rich and famous always had “concubines” as they were called under the French royal courts. And it is a bit the same, isn’t it, that what the old Aristocrats did then the rich still do now. Who can blame the poor girls for wanting to be fancied by the rich? No one really can apart from the church.

The matter has by now become ridiculous and I am not about to make myself very popular with those who do not want to be able to look truth into the eye or have been made to believe that their case has really good merit because they could afford to pay justice to allow them to rule that make belief. That is really the danger, that if you can afford to pay for something then very powerful people will support you and you will only be shown the door by the poor masses who do what they always did, Gossip in one form or another.

The question arises should English justice really always serve the rich in civil cases or show more common sense and avoid making a few bucks out of some applications?

The contemporary sting of privacy

I think David Cameron’s suggestion that the matter of privacy is one for government and not for judges is most interesting because it puts the matter out of the contemporary limelight and gives it a more general direction.

Of course anything enshrined in law cannot be case-lawed away by eager judges. Judges of course are basically representing national interests, which includes business interests and political ones. So the interests of powerful individuals could be jeopardized depending on which side of the political spectrum they reside or what business interests they represent. It seems that case-law is a flexible as gum in the mouth of those who chew it.

On one hand the private lives of the average person is of little interest other than to statistics but powerful people’s lives are peer behaviours. The moral and ethical fibre of society hangs on the behaviour of powerful individuals and the press has the power to emphasize the behaviour of some more than that of others.

To suggest that parliament makes clear laws under which to handle such incidences is the most refreshing new influx into public relations politics so far.

The particular case talked about also includes employment matters, which could well end up before tribunals and if a powerful gagging order restrains any type of reporting about the causes of employment problems,which could include that ever so powerful celebrity, then a serious gap is being torn into the freedom of the press indeed, so serious that in fact a black hole of information is created into which many matters of interest may sink into an unknown abyss.

It remains to be seen whether this ‘conflict’ will become a power struggle between the powerful Mr Justice Eady, a trend-setter in Defamation and Privacy laws and David Cameron, incumbent Prime Minister.  Those are very interesting sparring partners.

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