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Sad state of affairs in Britain

Posted By: Amanda Syme

Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/11/11 05:09 PM

One of the reasons I love living in Belize is because the schools uphold strict rules. In addition I can correct my children without fear of disapproval from society. My kids know that if they want to have a great job, make decent money, get ahead and attain their goals and dreams all they have to do is work hard towards the goal - the opportunities abound.

Sure teen pregnancy and over-indulgence of alcohol or casual drug use are also options - but not if they want to get ahead and grasp life with both hands.

I would like to continue to live a life in which the government has rules and enforces them even-handedly. I don't want to live in a society that accepts street gangs as a part of life. Many of our kids are falling into this trap - they have broken homes, no solid father figure to look up to, admire and yes, perhaps fear a little. Who is teaching our kids respect when our single mothers are at work all day? Who is ensuring they have a safe place to go to school? Who is punishing them if they don't attend school or don't bother to do their homework?

Now is the time for Belize to get a grip - get a handle on our social values, promote family unity, promote education, promote sports and team activities.

If our country continues to allow many of the issues we see happening today we will go one of 2 ways - dictatorship or anarchy.

Our children are our future. We need to work together to nurture our future leaders - instill them with pride of themselves, their community and their nation.





Why did people loot and cause destruction?
Posted By: elbert

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/11/11 09:41 PM

Amanda, I think the riots in Britain are all about government budget cuts.
The people are upset over the government cutbacks in spending for social programs, like paying for collage tuition, etc..and so they are showing their displeasure.
Same as the troops pulling out of Belize , their government is in financial trouble like most of the planet, and they are cutting back.
Posted By: ragman

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/11/11 10:21 PM

Yes, it is a sad state of affairs what is going on in Britain and other Western Countries. This is a result of becoming too dependent on Government. A helping hand, no problem but it has gotten to the point where whole families are dependent on Government payouts for every facet of their lives for their whole life. They end up without self pride and without a work ethic. Sad but we will probably see more of this rather than less in the future.

The governments have promised more than they can deliver and the people are not equipped now to help themselves because of their dependency.
Posted By: PROBUS

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/11/11 10:32 PM

I think the riots in Britain are more down to opportunistic vandalism and looting than anything else. Many of the rioters have been found to have homes and jobs, or to be in full-time education. I'm glad to see a youth from a very good home has been jailed for 6 months for looting a bottle of water.

Nonetheless, there is a major gulf in Britain between the "haves" and the "have nots" that I think is a big fundamental contributor to the present troubles. Many people are jobless and hopeless (and in increasing numbers also homeless), but they still see conspicuous consumption around them. And of course there is now a wholly unaccountable government in place, sucking in millions of pounds.

As to dictatorship or anarchy in Belize, I think the latest from Dean Barrow in (effectively) suspending the Constitution is a big step towards totalitarianism.

As for "kids know that if they want to have a great job, make decent money, get ahead and attain their goals and dreams all they have to do is work hard towards the goal", I'm afraid that may once have been true but it emphatically no longer is. A key reason why so many people feel utterly disillusioned and hopeless.
Posted By: Rykat

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/11/11 10:50 PM

"The people are upset over the government cutbacks in spending for social programs, like paying for college tuition, etc..and so they are showing their displeasure."

Excellent observation, elbert. Therefore one can deduce?
Posted By: SimonB

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/11/11 10:55 PM

That Elbert is mis-informed.
Posted By: elbert

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/11/11 11:17 PM

Time
http://globalspin.blogs.time.com/20...f-europes-economic-crisis/#ixzz1Uk5QP3P4
To reduce the riots that have shaken Britain this week to nothing more than criminal wickedness, as Prime Minister David Cameron and his cohort tend to do, is a dangerous exercise in denial. And it barely survives the most cursory scrutiny: Thousands of people don't suddenly take to the streets to manifest wickedness as if in response to the appearance of Lord Voldemort's Deatheater sigil on their Blackberries, without any context; criminality -- which the actions of the rioters certainly are, with no mitigating features or excuses -- on the massive scale seen in London this week is indicative of a social crisis. And to dismiss as apologists for thuggery those who seek explanations in the state of society for a mass outbreak of criminality is a self-serving, self-deluding evasion by those in power. When so many young people have been so willing to break the laws that maintain order and protect property rights, it doesn't require a Marcellus to point out that there's something rotten in the state of Britain.

Read more: http://globalspin.blogs.time.com/20...f-europes-economic-crisis/#ixzz1UlGNDa60
Posted By: ragman

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 12:05 AM

"This is not about poverty, it's about culture [that] says everything about rights but nothing about responsibilities."

DAVID CAMERON,
Prime Minister of Great Britain, speaking at an emergency session of Parliament in the wake of riots that shook London neighborhoods for nearly a week


Posted By: iluvbelize

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 12:08 AM

David Cameron is a twit and has full knowledge of why these thugs are rioting... not to mention that the police force stood down for days before taking any proper action to arrest and detain these rioting thugs. Hoping this is not precedent to further acts of rioting in London... or anywhere else.
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 12:46 AM

I think it's sad and awful and that those of us who don't live it might want to step back and refrain from pontificating too much.
We lived in LA during the 92 riots and I can say that as an affected resident the "reasons" were so multi-faceted that no one comment came even close to explaining why.
Posted By: iluvbelize

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 01:24 AM

The fact that the Brits have been disarmed in conjunction with the fact they are now disinfranchised in the way of a dearth of employment opportunities, property rights, personal liberties, etc. and the list goes on... and the fact that basically Europe generally has become a police state, is no subject of pontification. It is real. And it can and may happen anywhere, no matter to what degree you believe you may live in a vacuum.
Posted By: SimonB

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 01:47 AM

It's nearly one in the morning. A moment ago the newsreader breathlessly reported that a police station was set on fire in Birmingham. In a minute or two, a new development will overtake that in another part of the country or another part of London. It is chaos, the most genuine chaos we've ever seen here.

A moment ago, returning home from a walk around my area to report on what had happened, the true human effect of it hit me. As I walked past another man, dressed in nothing more off-putting than jeans and a T-shirt, we both glanced up at each other, suspicious and defensive. That glance is what it's cost us so far. It's increased the space between us.

London can be a cold, difficult city, and its inhabitants, like the British in general, are not particularly vocal about their love for it. We do not treat London as the Americans, say, treat New York. But everyone I know is fiercely proud of this city. Everyone who is from London - and you're from London whenever you choose to be intensely loves this place. We love our city because of its extraordinary vigour, because we need to be somewhere vital and alive.

We all must accept, however, that we could have seen this coming. Not just Londoners Britain could have seen this coming. We know what it is to walk past a threatening group of young kids, their hoods up and caps on, their body language jagged and aggressive. The easygoing label we attached to them, 'hoodies', serves to make it something you expect, something to giggle at on panel shows.

Somewhere along the line Britain became afraid of its children and we just did what we always do: we made jokes about it. It doesn't feel so funny anymore. The signs were there. Asbos, CCTV, shopping centres using mosquito alarms to disperse groups of children. Just because it erupted and has startled us all, let's not pretend the signs weren't there.

The actions were near-simultaneous because the idea did not need to spread. It is not an idea at all. It is a shared community which can't even formulate the language to describe itself, which didn't even know it existed until a few days ago.

Now we're all going to have to talk about it. The major events which hit us now are treated as automatic verifications of each individual's personal politics. It happened most recently with the massacre in Norway. Just this evening mayoral candidate Ken Livingstone made points which amounted to party political posturing. Ukip leader Nigel Farage and the BNP blamed multiculturalism. More than one right-wing columnist blamed family breakdown. An army of left-wingers blamed deprivation. Many of them also joined the right in calling for the army to come out on the streets.

The first thing we have to do is separate the valid ideas from the invalid ones. Blaming this on multiculturalism, for instance, is laughable and demonstrably false, as any Turkish man defending his shop with a stick tonight can tell you.

Then we must separate the arguments which are essentially tactical from those which are about the fundamental problems in our country. Neither the water cannon nor the army are off the table and we should all accept that. But we're not there yet. The most obvious solution is to absolutely drown major urban areas in police on Tuesday night. Anyone who has followed my writing in any capacity whatsoever will know that that is not the sort of thing I would ever usually write.

The conservative voices are correct. We need to have the harshest possible penalty for those involved in this disorder. We can't talk about why this happened without talking about family breakdown, lack of respect for others and lack of responsibility.

But we will also define ourselves by how we respond to this. We already have the powers to deal with this sort of situation. There is no need for new laws or macho posturing. The left has many answers. No-one with a career behaves this way. No-one who is invested in society would act like this. Only people with nothing to lose would do this.

This has to be a moment of unity. It's too big, too important, for us all to fall into our familiar bear pit. Today, there can be no politics. Right now, this is about how to stop it. Later, it will be about why it happened. And when that happens, everything is on the table. It's the most boring, but also the most accurate, thing we can possibly say: there is no single right answer.

http://uk.news.yahoo.com/comment/talking-politics/no-politics-today-084521728.html
Posted By: iluvbelize

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 01:54 AM

Why did the police force stand down at the beginning of this horror? Questions arise. I'm heart sick at the developments and hope and pray that our fellow humanity survive this situation without total loss of community and civility.
Posted By: PROBUS

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 01:57 AM

Originally Posted by iluvbelize
David Cameron is a twit


No disagreement there. Most of the core members of the present administration have extremely wealthy and privileged backgrounds and have never known hardship. Whether or not they understand the stress many of the population are currently going through, and it is my view that they do not, they have absolutely no credibility on the street. Their very existence is bolstering the commonly held feeling of "them and us" at the root of the present riots.

At the same time that many people have lost their homes and means of survival, sales in Britain of top luxury cars are reaching record levels. Cars are highly visible as a means of advertising one's wealth - what message does this give to the many people who are intrinsically hard working but who through no fault of their own have been left high and dry?

I read recently that some 440,000 home owners in Britain are in negative equity. Each of course represents a family. Some lenders and not just ones recognised as tough have been demanding immediate repayment of those loans, as in many cases they're no longer covered by the asset value. Of course the owners can neither pay up nor sell, even if they can make the previous monthly repayments. The lenders seem happy to repossess those homes, evict the "owners" (onto the street, as there's nowhere else), and leave the properties empty as they won't be able to sell them either. This is all grist to the mill of social unrest.

One factor that hasn't come to the fore yet but beyond any doubt will is Britain's membership of the European Union. Only now are some of the harsher implications of this becoming visible, albeit they are still at the stage of "plausible deniability", and I suspect it will take several more years or even decades till the great mass of the European population realises how they've been sold down the river. When they do it will according to the design of the EU be "too late" to do anything about it. That will probably be the case for any legal remedy, but some distinguished commentators have said that the longer the people are left without a release valve, the greater and more violent will be the final explosion. Massive civil insurrection has been predicted, not just in Britain but across the EU, as all citizens are similarly affected. It's not for nothing that all national armies in the EU are being steadily reduced whilst at the same time the "European Army" has already been created and is growing - it will be needed to attempt to put down the rioting population of the EU.
Posted By: PROBUS

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 02:07 AM

Very useful quote, Simon. But this part of it is wrong:-

Originally Posted by SimonB
No-one with a career behaves this way. No-one who is invested in society would act like this. Only people with nothing to lose would do this


A number of the people arrested have excellent homes, jobs, university places. Some belong to traditional professions such as architects, lawyers, accountants. They've all been sucked into the moment. Anyone jailed for rioting or looting will have no job or university place to go back to, but that didn't stop them joining in.
Posted By: SimonB

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 02:09 AM

I suggest going back to the beginning of the British news reports and reading everything that was taking place vs. what the World media is reporting it will give you a better understanding of what was going on at the time. There was no stand down order, police were overwhelmed and they have admitted that they made a mistake in misjudging a small protest that was taken over by hooligans.

I'm confused about the Britons being disarmed comment is about. Brits never had the gun oriented society that the US did and licensing laws were in place from the 1700s if not earlier. The US became a gun oriented society out of necessity in the beginning; the revolution and the civil war took it to a new level.
Posted By: SimonB

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 02:12 AM

Peter, I think that the press is looking for those type of people and reporting on them because it's sensational. Of the 1000 or so that were arrested I don't think you'll find more that a few percent that were anything but your garden variety street thug.
Posted By: iluvbelize

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 02:28 AM

The basic human right to defend oneself and one's family is God given. The "American Gun Culture" aside, to have any government proclaim that firearms and perhaps other weapons are illegal to most of society is a set up for tyranny. Anytime. Anywhere.
Posted By: PROBUS

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 02:30 AM

You may be right Simon - only time will tell. But certainly some such "privileged" people have been heavily implicated. It probably says more about their weakness of character than anything else.

On the alleged stand-down order, I'm inclined to agree with what Simon says. The police were taken completely by surprise and were out in far smaller numbers than were needed to do anything effective. That's when police get hurt. They decided it was better to watch and record what was going on and who was doing it so they could later act - as they have been doing very convincingly.

I do have a considerable concern for business owners who've lost their stock and in some cases their premises. Knowing what I do about insurance companies I think it likely that many of these will find their insurance does not cover them. The giants like Sony will just shrug it off. The tiny independents will get by as best they may. But the ones in the middle, privately owned but still substantial businesses, may find the losses irretrievable and unsustainable. Even private car owners whose cars were torched may find themselves not covered either, as insurance companies often do not cover losses due to "civil unrest".
Posted By: iluvbelize

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 02:33 AM

And, yes, agreed. I retract my former assertion that the rioting were all thugs. I do believe some were, injudiciously, caught up in the situation. These riots seem to me to be initially provoked by unseemly agents of sedition, the origin of which I shall refrain from speculating, and others may have become involved due to bad judgment. And then, there were the thug element that was certainly standing ready to feed on the victims who have very little in way of protection.
Posted By: PROBUS

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 05:37 AM

Originally Posted by iluvbelize
The basic human right to defend oneself and one's family is God given. The "American Gun Culture" aside, to have any government proclaim that firearms and perhaps other weapons are illegal to most of society is a set up for tyranny. Anytime. Anywhere.


I can't agree with this. There are other ways of protecting yourself rather than just reaching for the nearest weapon. The civilised way is to band together and use mass numbers to defeat the bad guys. A working civil law system with "enforcers" (police), in fact. I think the continuing American usage of and reliance on guns is merely a sign of an immature culture. The British system is not perfect, nor indeed is any democratic country that abhors personal force (Norway for example) but it is still far superior to a culture of force and violence.
Posted By: ragman

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 11:31 AM

An old article but I don't think things have changed much. Police and courts are fine and certainly have their place but they are after the fact. I am of the opinion that you should be able to legally defend yourself by whatever means reasonable prior to and during an attack. The result of not being able to defend yourself emboldens criminals and has a negative effect on society.

Government Issues
June 7, 2004

BRITONS RIGHT TO SELF-DEFENSE PRACTICALLY ELIMINATED
The withdrawal of Englishmen's right to self-defense is having dire consequences in Great Britain: higher crime rate, weak sentences for assailants, and even the victims end up thrown in jail, says historian Joyce Lee Malcolm.

This did not happen all at once. The people were weaned from their fundamental right to protect themselves through a series of policies implemented over some 80 years, she says. Those include the strictest gun laws of any democracy, legislation that makes it illegal for individuals to carry any article that could be used for personal protection, and restrictive limits on the use of force in self-defense. The impacts have been stark:

One is six times more likely to be mugged in London than in New York City.
More than half of English burglaries occur when someone is at home, while the frequency of such "hot burglaries" is only 13 percent in America.
Since handguns were banned in 1998, handgun crime has more than doubled.
Offenders under the age of 21 are almost never sent to prison; criminals that end up in prison are routinely released after serving half the sentence..
Overall, with the exception of murder, violent crime in England and Wales is far higher than in the United States. The British police are now, for the first time in their history, routinely armed, and have even sought the advice of American policemen to deal with gun crime

Victims of crime risk imprisonment for defending oneself. Fending off robbers in one's home with toy pistols will get one charged by the police; killing an assailant results in a life sentence, while if one manages to knock an attacker down, you must not hit him again or you risk being charged with assault, says Malcolm.

Source: Joyce Lee Malcolm, "Self-Defense: An Endangered Right," Cato Institute, Policy Report No. 2, March 2004.

For text http://www.cato.org/pubs/policy_report/pr-index.html

For more on Government Issues:

http://www.ncpa.org/sub/dpd/index.php?Article_Category=33




Posted By: SimonB

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 01:37 PM

A slanted article written by a right wing American organization.

Pistol regulations were in place since the beginning of the century and historically very few people carried them, not even the police; the 1998 ban is just a red herring.

Brits and Canadians are not out there begging to be armed and the great majority want it that way.
Posted By: Rykat

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 02:00 PM

"Brits and Canadians are not out there begging to be armed and the great majority want it that way."

And you are welcome to keep it that way.
"From my cold, dead hands", for us and it better stay that way!

Immature? Ha-Ha, now thats funny right there! smile
Posted By: Bobber

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 02:28 PM

I realy feel sorry for any country, US included, that puts the power in the hands of the criminals. Regardless of your good intentions, there are always that percentage of people who do violence for their own gains. Protecting yourself and your family should be foremost. 911 here in the US, and its counterparts in other countries, are just a call for the cleanup crew. Home defence should be paramount, concealed carry not quite so important.
Posted By: reaper

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 05:25 PM

Just before the riots in LA in '92 you could cut the street tension with a knife. Black folks were selling all of the businesses to Koreans in South Central. We had a bad economy in LA. The powder keg was when a young black girl was shot in the back by an elderly Korean shopkeeper. The county moved the trial to Santa Monica, where a white judge gave the woman (who was in her 80's) probation. That got the mood really going. We put the bullet proof vests under our seats on the fire trucks again, just in case. Gang violence was way up.
Then comes the Rodney King verdicts. Police Chief Gates wanted the city to be ready, but was reigned in by then Mayor Bradley.
Everyone remembers watching TV when a few thugs pulled Reginald Denny out of his truck and beat him senseless, starting the melee.
After the smoke cleared it was also determined that a number of business owners prbably torched their own buildings for the insurance money. It was also very clear that once it started, thousands of looters jumped on the bandwagon and took everything they could.
I suppose riots don't always have clear cut reasons to the onlookers.
The crazy thing was that a week after the riots the tension on the streets diminished and things turned calm. For a while...
Posted By: PROBUS

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 07:26 PM

Originally Posted by reaper
After the smoke cleared it was also determined that a number of business owners prbably torched their own buildings for the insurance money


In the US is it normal for insurers to pay out in the event of serious civil disturbance? In Britain insurers often have get-out clauses that mean they don't have to pay in those circumstances.
Posted By: reaper

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 07:43 PM

I t depends on the insurance company policy and also many business owners weren't aware of that clause:)
Posted By: Amanda Syme

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/12/11 08:10 PM

Riot and malicious damage isn't always a typical coverage - you need to buy a special rider.


Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: Sad state of affairs in Britain - 08/14/11 02:09 PM


The crazy thing was that a week after the riots the tension on the streets diminished and things turned calm. For a while... [/quote]

For several weeks after the riots we had martial law in the affected areas. I passed APC's on Sunset Boulevard.
But yes, we all learned a lesson or two about the horror of blowing up. And the city of LA learned a lesson or two about the LAPD "culture". Big changes followed those riots.
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