I’ve been saying for some time (well, forever, really) that this government has been busy using scare tactics to further their political agenda. Witness ID cards, control orders, restrictions on the right to peaceful assembly, etc etc etc. Not things that will do a whole hell of a lot to make the country any safer, but they will make like easier for the politicians at the helm.
Luckily, even the kind of pressure group that the government may listen to is saying the same thing.
Tony Blair’s anti-terror policy is being “submerged” by party political interests, a report says.
The Joseph Rowntree Reform Trust said ministers could be accused of “exploiting the politics of fear”.
And by trying to win “the white working class vote” they risked alienating Muslims who could help defeat terror.
Now, apart from some of the points (there is a War on Terror, for example), I agree with it. Especially these two points:
“It allows terrorists to assume the dignity of being ‘soldiers’ or ‘combatants’ instead of the mere criminals that they are.”
Ministerial attacks on the judiciary for confounding their anti-terror legislation were “unfounded and constitutionally illiterate”, it added.
“constitutionally illiterate”? There’s ne’er been a more fitting phrase. In fact, I think that I’ll have to add it to my list of stock clichés.
It does sum up the behaviour of the cabinet, though, doesn’t it? Write a bad law, steamroller it through Parliament, then undermine the judges when they point out that the law is badly written and wasn’t subjected to the required amount of Parliamentary scrutiny. Showing that they seem to have a basic lack of understanding of their jobs, and the job of the judiciary.
Ignorance and blatent populism, verying on scaremongering. Soon to be published by HMSO as “How to get elected in the 2000s, by T Blair”.
How did this post get past your rigorous screening process?
What screening process would that be?