Saturday, 26 July 2014

A manifestly unfair and draconian new procedure...

Police to seize mobiles in EVERY car crash via @MailOnline

Don't get me wrong: I understand why they will now be doing this, but it's also a dangerous move. My phone is literally my lifeline - I'm a former heart patient, and not having my mobile phone to hand could be the difference between receiving life-saving medical help, and dying. Further, it's more often than not the only way my relatives can get hold of me. It's the way I can access the internet. It holds immensely personal data on myself, my partner, and the contact details of all manner of people, businesses, and organisations that I know, work with, or do business with.

In short, it would be not only a personal disaster for my phone to be seized, but a professional one as well - all because some damn fool shunts me up the khyber because he wasn't bloody looking.

I appreciate that it's difficult for the Police and prosecuting authorities to gain successful convictions for certain offences, but this is using a sledgehammer to crack a nut.

I drive practically every day. I use my phone to navigate, warn me of traffic delays and congestion (satnav applications), and yes, to receive calls via my bluetooth headset (thus ensuring that I don't handle the phone when I'm driving), which IS legal.

Moreover, being a bus driver, I'm not permitted, BY LAW, to even use a hands-free headset or headphones, while I'm in control of a bus, let alone driving one (PSV regulations are much more draconian in this regard than for mere car and van drivers).

Yet, the old bill will seize the phone if some other bugger smacks me while I'm driving.

Patently, this is manifestly and grossly unfair.

Equally as obviously, it's treating everyone as being guilty before being proved so in a court.

So much for a cornerstone of English Justice, that of the presumption of innocence.

I wonder what it'll take for Liberty to get involved in this mile-wide paintbrush of draconian practice?

Monday, 21 July 2014

An Oxymoron for Fundamental extremists...

BBC News - Iraqi Christians flee after Isis issue Mosul ultimatum

Let's be clear: I am NOT singling out any one particular faith: ALL faiths and beliefs have fundamental extremists. The above news article demonstrates why I have a major issue with such extremist fundamentalism of whatever faith you care to name: "If you don't do what we, the (insert name/type/brand of Fundamental Extremism here) tell you to do, we'll lop off your bodily parts wholesale". The language tends to vary, but the overall theme is there.

Fundamental extremists do not give a tinkers cuss about tolerance.

Fundamental extremists do not give a tinkers cuss about freedom of expression or faith.

Fundamental extremists twist and utterly abuse the words of the faith they claim to follow to meet their own, frequently harsh, often horribly cruel, certainly irrational, excessively demanding, and narrow world view, and condemn those who do not agree with them to death, in usually a quite barbarous and inhumane manner.

Many years ago, I was told a very apropos oxymoron: "Kill all extremists".

I am not suggesting for one moment that this be done, but one can't help but think that there's some rather pointed irony in there, somehow.