Wednesday, October 03, 2007

The Common Enemy revisited - pt2

and back to Common Purpose for a moment...

Unlike the ‘Little Englanders’ I referred to in my earlier post I personally doubt very much if an organisation like Common Purpose could ever be the all powerful demon they think it to be

What it could very easily be is part of that network of unaccountable, droid-nurturing lobby groups and think thanks which now envelops the political process and has replaced ideology and conviction with 'glittering generalities'

I have a particularly big problem with the Fascistic (that word again) blurring of the conceptual lines between a public service such as the police or prison service and privately owned companies - a blurring process which organisations like Common Purpose help to promote

Maybe I am prisoner of my personal political ideology but I believe that there is a big difference between running a supermarket and running a police force

There are some services that are arguably best run as monopolies – water supply is the first that comes to mind. Unless that is someone can make a compelling case for laying two competing sets of pipes in our towns and cities

And giving monopolies on essential services over to private ownership is rarely a good idea

There are other services which potentially could compete with each other but it is probably best if they don’t – I’d suggest that having two different police forces or armies competing with each other on the high street would be insane

Another point to consider is that many of our public services exist because we, as citizens, give up our rights to act for ourselves on the understanding that certain activities, such as dispensing justice, might be better achieved collectively

"You know I am no stranger. I know rules are a bore. But just to keep you from danger I am the Law"

But what happens when the politicians we have given up our freedom of action to hand those powers over to privately controlled corporations?

Is a policeman still a public servant if he works for a privately controlled company?

...or thinks, acts and talks like he's working for a privately controlled company?

Would that make someone like Jean Charles de Menezes a dissatisfied customer?

Mentioning JCdM is not quite as gratuitous as it might seem, as the person who gave the order for him to be shot in the face is a Common Purpose graduate

And no, I am not implying that Common Purpose style leadership training turns people in psycho killers but if I had been the person who paid for that particular graduate’s leadership course I’d be looking for my money back...

That’s one story that hasn’t made it’s way onto the Common Purpose graduate case history webpage

It makes much more sense to think about these kind of leadership courses not so much as being about training as being part of a selection process. You can’t turn someone into a leader in a couple of weeks. You can however identify the kind of people your system of control is based on and equip them with the language they need to be identifiable to each other

... a way of looking at things which can help make sense of the fact that the person in command of the Stockwell operation was promoted to even higher office shortly after presiding over what was, even by official accounts, a murderous fuck up

Competence and preferment do not necessarily go hand in hand in our system of governance. There are other qualities much higher on the list of selection criteria

Given the increased blurring of the distinction between public service and private enterprise, it seems only appropriate that the only court case to be heard as the result of JCdM’s execution is being held under Health and Safety at work legislation. Even though I doubt very much if anyone will be held accountable as a result of the case it has at least forced the papers to report a curious incident which happened immediately after JCdM was shot...

Aside from a press statement issued by the driver’s union the following day, the news that the police (sic.) chased the train driver down a tunnel and jammed a gun in his face has not been investigated by any of the mainstream media. Come to think of I don't even think the press release was reported at the time

The significance of this story is, to my mind anyway, that if the police had followed an alleged suspect suicide bomber all the way from his home to Stockwell station why on earth would they feel the need to start running around pointing guns at other people, especially the driver of the fucking train?

And as for the $64,000 question – ‘Why did the police think a guy in thin clothing, carrying no bags, was a suicide bomber in the first place?’ – well, forget it…

The official story continues to make no sense – big time


PS - The Antagonist appears to be in the process of resuscitating 'Anything that defies my sense of reason' - a blog that has frequently touched on the events of July 2005 and their consequences, as well as all sorts of other bits and bobs. I'm glad to see it breathing again



brendadada said...

This is a reallly heartbreaking saga, in so, so many ways.

I keep returning to the way JCdM keeps being described as 'innocent'. What if he had, in fact, been um 'guilty'?

Since when TF has the police been given carte blanche to issue summary executions? Do we have the death penalty in the country? If somebody out there things we do, do't the suspects have to go to F'ing court and be tried first?



brendadada said...

Tsk, spillchucker.

things = thinks
do't = don't

Stef said...

and there was me thinking you were typing with han accent

brendadada said...

Glottal stops are more catching than chickenpox. After 3 years here, I have to consciously remember to bloody annunciate. Ye knaa.

Anonymous said...

The same old same old. 'Mistakes'. 'Operational failings'. 'Lessons learnt'. 'If only we had more funding'. 'If only we had more powers'...

It's like a script!

Stef said...

...and in the never-ending battle of 'Conspiracy vs Cock Up' cock up wins yet again

Shutter said...

We will of course have many weeks of highly paid pinstripe wizards words to mull over but you really do have to hand it to these clever bastards how they can divert the murder of a citizen, in daylight in cold blood whilst held down - without as our Geordie friend points out, any due process (Kafka Die Prozess) to a debate about the HSE legislation and in the Prozess not bring to court the guys who pulled the trigger (s?) to provide evidence.

The same folks who could rely on for years on a train time that was both incorect and impossible - and then simply say - we wuz wrong when the evidence , obtaind by a persistent civilian became too public.

The other pertinent feature to date is that the "Ops room" was full to busting with adrenalin pumped rozzers - and yet it took over 24 hours for someone to tell the boss of the fuck up.

Is short term memory loss a requirement for Police?

brendadada said...

Kafka Die Prozess, yes indeed, thanks LP!

Southpawpunch said...

Lots of unanswered questions:

Why seven bullets - I understand contract killers consider one in the head and one in the chest to be sufficient?

Why the gun trained on the tube driver was never mentioned at the time - as has occurred to us both in what we have written on our blogs?

How come the cops didn't recognise each other (so ended up pointing a gun at 'Ivor') - you'd have thought that pretty basic to ensure that when they are going shooting, they didn't engage in 'friendly fire'.

The sequence - why did they drag 'Ivor' out at gunpoint - did they think he was a possible suicide bomber, and if so, why did they not execute him on the spot as they did with the other 'suicide bomber' JCdM?

Admittedly, some of the above detail may just be heat of the moment mistake stuff e.g. gun on 'Ivor'- although not the execution of JCdM - but if so, why not provide fuller info, exact movements of all, comprehensive time frame, CCTV footage and cops giving evidence in court.

Shutter said...

The train river incident was covered here
Date July 25th 2005
Bob Crow General Secretary RMT Union isued a Press release 22nd July 2005
(Now disappeared from their site but here it is)

“Their concerns will have been fuelled by the revelation that an innocent Tube driver today found himself with a police gun at his head during the incident in Stockwell station in which a suspect was shot dead.

“No apology could ever be enough ever take away the trauma that that driver has suffered and there should be a full inquiry into the handling of the incident,”

Naturally press / media reports have been confused and confusing. "Official" statements have been minimal.

I saw the story that the train driver escaped from the train and ran into the tunnel and was there held up against the wall, by a highly trained plain clothes "policeman" who drawing on his extensive training, took a split millisecond decision not to pump him full of lead.

I think this driver , has like other eye witnesses, a tale to tell. Who gave the orders to delay the train ? Why ? Who gave orders to shut / open doors. Why ? Why did the driver leg it ?

at 7/24/2005 04:23:00 PM

see also
Times Online 22/7,,22989-1704443,00.html

tegan said...

I think its fairly obvious that they're trying to hide something about the operation that day. What that something is we can only speculate. It may well be something innocus but very embaressing or it may be soemthing more sinister.

Like the murder of David Kelly, nobody with any clout will ask any of the difficult questions, the media will have it's blinkers on as always and the whole thing will slowly fade away, yet another 'cock-up' for which we need to learn lessons from.

The Antagonist said...

PS - The Antagonist appears to be in the process of resuscitating 'Anything that defies my sense of reason' .... I'm glad to see it breathing again

Most kind, sir, thank you.