Brian's Brief Encounters

This is an Unofficial Kaffe Fassett fanzine. Brought to you from a Leafy Suburb of the Throbbing Metropolis.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Recruitment Drive

Your country needs YOU!

Don’t panic. I’m not about to ask you to don the blue serge and join me in a Safety Partnership van behind a camera viewfinder. There just isn’t enough room to fit you all in. Besides, I don’t have enough tea bags or doughnuts to go around.

No, there’s a much more difficult job waiting for you if you want it. Sir Ian has spoken and the thrust of his speech was identifying the chronic shortage of policy makers. Currently the number of job opportunities in this sector stands at somewhere near the 58 million mark. Give or take.

Unfortunately it’s a voluntary position; a bit like being a Special Constable but without the uniform, training or free tube travel. On the upside though, there’s no reason for you to have the slightest idea about policing. We wouldn’t want to ruin a perfectly good tradition.

It seems that we aren’t good enough at setting our own policies. Nor are those men and women 61% of the electorate voted for this year. The Queen simply isn’t cutting the mustard either, despite rubber stamping hundreds of new laws in the past few years. She must be worn out.

Apparently we have reached this impasse not because there are too many interested parties wanting to become involved in what we do, not because there have been any knee-jerk reactions to situations in recent years, not because everything we do, or don’t do, is played out in the media ad infinitum and certainly not because there has been a lack of focus on what the Police are supposed to be doing. No, instead we are here because of the bus companies. After all they’re the ones who got rid of the bus conductors in favour of driver only vehicles. Forever banishing these ‘agents of social enforcement’ to the dole queues.

So Sir Ian has asked you to ‘articulate what kind of Police service you want’. I’m not clear on whether or not he wants all 58 million of you to agree with each other. I’m guessing we might have to wait a while for that to happen.

Let’s start with a simple one for you to ponder:-

You have already voiced your opinion about Operation Kratos and you don’t think it’s a very good idea. I’m sure you don’t because all of the papers say so. That’s okay as I have some alternative suggestions you can pick from.

1. We put our fingers in our ears and hope nothing goes “Bang!”

2. We challenge the person in 43 different languages using an acceptable phrase like “Are you a suicide bomber?” before calling a 24 hour helpline at the IPCC to see if it’s okay with them if we pull the trigger following an affirmative response.

3. We jump on them and cut the red wire. It’s always the red wire. You only have to remember what happened when Riggs cut the blue wire by mistake.

Let me know when you’ve reached a consensus on this and the one or two other pressing issues we’re facing. Like hoodies, fashion faux-pas or hanging offence?

Until then I plan to muddle on; trying to arrest the bad guys and help the good guys.

If that’s alright with you.


At 22/11/05 8:39 AM, Blogger Riddari said...

Hmm.. so the 43 languages bit is your way of saying that lying about shooting an innocent civilian 7 times in the head (you know, in case the other 6 shots didn't hit his splattered cranium) and lying about his behaviour and apparel (light coat vs heavy coat which could conseal a bomb) is quite ok because hey, he *might* have been a bad guy right!

Just like your mother could be.

At 22/11/05 10:09 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


As you appear to have an inside track on the investigation (perhaps you're the one who leaked the documents to the media) Could you tell us please who is lying?

As the only comments I have read regarding clothing etc originally came from a confused and (15 minutes of fame) witness who was TV interviewed.

He was later discredited.

At 22/11/05 10:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Top quality post, Brian. Expect to see it rehashed in Sunday's papers...

At 22/11/05 3:00 PM, Anonymous Roy Bachellier said...

Riddari seems to be a "professionally" peeved person. Sad.
Maybe he/she has no real idea of the hazards of really hard policing.; Given the events of July 7 I would expect passions to be inflamed, also the use of hollow point bullets is strongly advised as they really do stop someone.

At 22/11/05 3:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have to say that I fully support most of what Sir Ian had to say. Ridicule if you must the demise of the bus conductor, the park keeper and sundry other 'social' positions but you have to admit that they were fundamental in trying to maintain, to a certain extent, an acceptable level of civil behaviour. That authority has now become yet another aspect of policing responsibility. Rather than persistently ridicule all attempts to try and improve our current social degredation would it not be more beneficial to take on board the wisdom of senior and experienced members of society and work towards acheiving what must surely be a common goal - ie. a society in which any member can feel safe and confident in the protection that it provides. If this means arming all police officers then so be it - does it work in other countries, does it necessarily lead to an increase in violent offences, does it lead to anxiety from the general public ( we have armed police on patrol in most areas of the country already and certainly at airports and places of likely 'activity'), do we owe it to the individual officers and ultimately every member of the general public to provide a safe and protected environment - yes, of course we do. Arm the police and let's face the current trend full in the face. If we talk about providing the police with all the safety equipment we can to do the job they are paid for then are we not in fact, acknowledging in doing so that the problem is already apparent and needs dealing with. Give the police the tools to do the job , subject to appropriate training and supervision.

At 22/11/05 5:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The expression 'damned if you do, damned if you don't' seems to apply to the cops. So, one 'innocent' civilian got offed, regrettable I admit but how much more regrettable it would have been if he had been a bomber and had detonated on the tube. I am not willing to believe that a team of armed officers acted without probable cause. Call me a facist if you like.

At 22/11/05 6:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

the Met don't use 'hollow point' rounds - they are a 95 grain jacketed soft point. They come under the legal description of 'expanding ammunition'. They are used in preference to a 'full metal jacket' (military ball) as they have a tendency not to overpenetrate. For the uninitiated a bullet has one simple task - that is to transfer the kinetic energy it posesses into the target you have selected - if the bullet comes out of the other side of the target this energy transfer is incomplete. Whilst I'm at it riddari seems to be the kind of person who is very forgiving - unless of course you are a Police Officer doing what you think is right! I think it is childish to involve Brian's mum ...........

At 22/11/05 6:45 PM, Blogger gonorr said...

another point to consider after the papers were ranting on about the Hague conventions, is that anti terrorist operations aren't covered by it, hence anything goes in a situation like this.

At 22/11/05 8:47 PM, Anonymous Jurgen said...

I have to say that too support Sir Ian Blair, especially with the bit about the degradation of the offices of conductor,park keeper etc..... yes figures of ridicule at one time or another..... but with a valuable contribution to society nevertheless. More of htese and less number crunching bureaucrats willing to criticise rather than assist, would be most welcome.
Perhaps now is the time to draw breath and close ranks and table some sensible proposals for public consideration.

God I sound like a politician someone slap me


At 22/11/05 11:40 PM, Anonymous Blackratcontrol said...

Personally I would like a service in which our senior management had the balls to stand up and say "this is our policy, it is legal and appropriate (JAPAN anyone) and if you dont like it the so be it." If we spent more time doing what needed to be done and less worrying about what the average guardian reader thought about us...
Perhaps Ian Blair could have stood up and said something to that effect? no? way too sore a point. much easier to bemone the loss of the past and not tackle the issues of the future.
Want a Community model to inspire social confidence and deter anti social behaviour? - lets go and make one. Just let us get on with it.

At 23/11/05 1:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The British Police will never be fully armed. No government will want to be remembered for arming the police Service as it wouldn't look good for them on the history books.

'Serving' Chief officers will not support this initiative either. Remember that their job is a 5 year stint as a trainee politician. They want to keep on side with the Home Secretary to ensure they get their annual budget. Chief officers are more interested in conjuring up detections by manipulating figures, than ensuring the welfare of their staff.

Policy should never be altered due to knee jerk reactions, but a full national debate on ensuring the safety of police officers is long overdue.

The police federation needs to use its 'clout' to maintain the issue in the public eye so that it can be addressed properly and not skimmed over again until the next inevitable atrocity.

At 23/11/05 9:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like your a little frustrated.. I agree with Ians idea of lack of social enforcers. We are expected to take over functions that were once done by the public. With US style liltigation culture and government beaurocracy these jobs have gone up in smoke. We are left to pick up the pieces and are stuck between a rock and a hard place. It is quite evident that the government doesn't quite know what our role should be, and so we should inform the electorate so they can vote appropriately at the next election.

I would prefer to catch criminals rather then play social worker to Mrs. Smith who can't control her kids and has World War 3 every evening with her husband.


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