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A Kingdom United?

A deeper look into the events and actions within the U.K. Aiming to analyse and discuss the effects events have on our daily lives, the media portrayal of such events and the political wrangling they create.

Riots, Wrongdoing and Aggravation

— Filed under: Breaking News, Politics & Government, Opinion
Tottenham Riots

Image by Beacon Radio via Flickr

With more than one disaster competing for the top new headline position within the last few weeks, it does indeed feel as anything is possible at the moment.  Sitting from my safe haven of the North East currently, eyes glued to the unfolding dramas and pinching myself occasionally to ensure reality has not bolted out the door.  This country could quite easily be on the cusp of a civil war, revolution, be plunged into the sad reality of martial law(perhaps shipped in).  Whatever does eventuate, you can be guaranteed of two things.  Politicians who began the who fiasco, will be parading around  ensuring the required amount camera time and pithy sound bites are dished out, and it will damage our economy even further meaning more doom and gloom headlines for the foreseeable future.  Its grim up north some say, but at the moment at least we don't have to content with violious vagabonds tearing up our city centres.

The most beguiling of all recent stories is the eruption of wanton looting, burning and an array of different criminal acts being carried out by large gangs of young louts across the country. This feels like the culmination of blunder after blunder everyone currently in positions that have been gifted to the   The media come time and time again to the conclusion that Blackberry Instant Messager has had a large part to play, as have many internet social and communicative tools.  Bit of a shame for Blackberry really, getting caught in the crossfire between an large amounts of media companies attempting not to implode and venting their frustration at the recently departed bedfellows also known as current and previous members of the government, and a large percentage of disenfranchised, muppets with a thirst for Carling Special Brew, chucking things, especially if they can be ignited then thrown, and the odd 32 inch tv or 500.

We have seen representatives from the three main parties  involved express their views.  Those in power including mayors, local council minions and the biggest minion and sound bite exponent, David Cameron have had more enough to say.  Some classics so far include Boorish Johnson stating that he would not return to the UK from his holiday, then changing his mind rather quickly and be seen to be wielding a brush and spouting off about not cutting Police jobs.  Unfortunately for Boris he was too late on both counts.  Probably 3 days late on his return from his holiday, and about 15 years too late on the police numbers front.  Mr Johnson's actions have lead to further comments which smack of a type of political infanticide, only in this case the infant in question has a plum accent, an array of suits that look as if he has been shot in to them with an aged cannon and a haircut that has more in common with Jack Straw's surname than anybody has the right to.  A Senior Tory MP without name has been quoted as stating the "Boris should have come back from his holiday earlier, he should have come back as soon as Tottenham erupted,".  The same MP went on to state that "It is fine that the Prime Minister did not come back until it was clear that London was burning", and in doing so managed to stab Mr Johnson verbally and bungle an attempt to protect the prime minister.  Its sad fact that I was not really surprised by such statements but I still wonder how anyone charged with the role of leading government could ever be defended when choosing not to return from a holiday to do just that.  No wonder society today has had enough with the rich/poor divide and the attitude of the rich and powerful.   The same backstabbing minister justified whatever bribe he must have paid to ensure his anonymity by coining a phrase for Mr Johnson's blunder by coining it as a "Hurricane Katrina moment" by saying that it wasn't.   However this same minister saved the best for last by attempting to have a pop at Ken Livingstone by saying that he had gone completely over the top when Mr Livingstone said that in words to the effect the whole damn debacle had been brought about by the current cuts by the government. 

I personally am not a fan of Red Ken for many reasons but have to give the man his due with this comment as he has stated what may be the thinking of a large majority of people within the country.  Those enforcing the laws passed by the previously mentioned bunch of in fighting buffoons, The Police are saying a lot less and seem to be saying it a lot slower.  This is probably due to the current Top Dog has been in his current a role about 2 weeks, having seen his predecessors  potentially be bestowed with the dubious bonus of "Go Directly to Jail" cards in the real life version of  drama that could be referred to as "Murdoch Monopoly".  The Police spokespeople has managed to provide the three C's, "challenging, criminality and condemn" but I feel that this falls on deaf ears, along with political spouting.  Sadly what will be heard time and time is the words of the product of years and years of bad governing.  The youth that seem to think that their rights include a free for all have been quoted as saying "we ain't gonna respect you, if you don't respect us, innit" and "lets bomb bargain booze".

Police Tape

Image by freefotouk via Flickr

The UK is clearly divided.  The rich, the ruling, the poor, the middle class, the conscientious, the ill informed, the opportunist and the criminal.  There are a million more facets that make up our nation at the current time, and they all seem to be rubbing each other the wrong way  The problem being that all members of society have the ability to foster or nurture anyone, and sometimes several way of thinking.  I have no doubt that finger pointing, PR messages, media twisting and raving lunacy will be presented over and over again with regards to this but I very much doubt that anyone will learn.  The Politicians will continue to act in the manner that seems to have become standard in my lifetime.  Another scandal is likely to thrust under our noses for us to bay ingloriously at our TV sets, whilst the previous scandal is swept under the carpet without due ceremony (how many people will have forgotten that the largest corruption scandal of our times is still under investigation).  The Police might be lucky in gaining a little of the public trust that it has attempted to garner for many years, but are not likely to gain further funds in the near future, unless of course David Cameron puts it on his "I am going to sort this out" list.  The scumbags who are currently turning parts of our city centres in to lolly scrambles will continue to breed their own, potential creating in the future a state that is a lot closer to the troubles we used to look at from afar such as Syria, Lebanon, Iraq etc where peace and supposed harmony are so far from imagination that their norm becomes the national norm.  A very scary thought indeed.  Finally, the media will continue to portray our nations events in a manner that they choose, depending on their loyalties, ratings and ethics (if it is not rude to use such a word in this article, as I think you would agree that a lack of ethics is the crux of this problem and could be linked to everyone mentioned so far).

Britain just lost another large lump of its greatness, if there was any left to lose.

Kuncen's picture

Racial element?

Welcome back MrShaw  :)

We've followed the events in the UK from afar with amazement and sadness.  The initial suggestions that the catalyst was Duggan's shooting were comical, but is it possible that there are real racial tensions simmering below the surface, perhaps intersecting with the rich/poor divide that you mentioned?

A co-worker mentioned today that the BBC website didn't appear to be devoting much space to the issue, whereas Al-Jazeera was covering it aggressively.  He suggested that it was a bit of "your country can do it too!"


MrShaw's picture


Good to be back.  Quite correct in terms of comedy value.  From the suggestions that it had anything to do with the shooting to involvement of large gangs, to politicians suggesting that they can clean it up and the blame game in full effect.  There will always be under lying tensions due to race in England, but I feel that it really is about the lack of ethics that are instilled.  Opportunity was abound and some very silly people are currently admitting to their idiocy in the papers today.

In terms of coverage, you have to take into account the way in which we view the media.  The BBC News Website has dedicated itself to what is now the 5th or 6th day of Riot updates.  Watching this particular medium passively makes you feel like it never ends, and if you are not careful you could believe that the riots were non stop, everywhere around you.  Reading about it on the internet is selective and there for does not continuously loop and have the same effect.  In terms at looking at one particular media outlet is bad for your brain.  David Cameron after all has that particular company firmly wedged under his thumb currently, a careful look at their articles lead you to this very fact.

I did do the whole flick through the news channels (mainly for a different accent, partially for a different view point) but didn't hang around on Al-Jazeera for long.  I like their angle though, it can happen to you too.  England has never in my life time been a peaceful country, so their particular view point rings true with me for now, in a small way.

Now, what was that fuss about Rupert Murdoch recently? ;)

Anonymous's picture

Recent UK riots and looting

It would appear from some of the figures released concerning those arrested for looting, rioting and other criminal activities over the past few days that there has been a surprisingly broad spectrum of hoodlums, scumbags and chancers responsible. From young, black, male primary school teachers, to geography students, to 47 year old postal workers. Yes, some have been the typical 'dissaffected youth' of the poor inner cities but others have been opportunists that would otherwise lead normal law-abiding lives. One question I would be very interested in asking is the correlation between those who have been arrested and the amount of time they spend on XBOX, PS2, or any other virtual gaming networks. I am not in any way trying to suggest that virtual gaming is somehow responsible tor the recent disturbances but I have a feeling that for some, virtual and real may become blurred and the consequences of actions therefore become less real. 

And if these people are the poor and disenfranchised how do they afford BlackBerries and xboxes in the first place.

MrShaw's picture

Clowns juggle and then drop the ball.

  • The spectrum of those being charged maybe wide, however that over 80% of those are under the age of 18 so far is a large indicator of who was rioting and looting.  I am currently thinking as the events that unfolded as a alternative flash mob with different intentions, that then became a game of who can riot in the most peer or media captive way, without any intention other to fill the covet cup, wardrobe and line the entire nest in possession most wanted.
  • Everyone of those involved is an opportunist from the most power man in the country right down to the alleged 8 year olds currently being processed rather ineffectively.  The Politicians are now taking the opportunity for more sound bites, the blame game and story sweeping.  There are individuals admitting crimes, and their lack of sorrow for on T.V. and taking the opportunity to brag, live out their 15 seconds of fame and will probably get be presented with a less than formal opportunity to serve the Queen inside an institution for a brief time, which is likely to solidify their belief that this country, our country does nothing for them.
  • In terms of how people come buy possessions without money, they take them.  That is rather obvious would you not say, given the topic.  Or they take, or sell something that will get the possessions they wish.  In the large majority of the people looting I would hazard a guess that the families involved had been providing the goods as well.  When I was 15 my dad bought me a computer.  I am pretty sure that is still going on.  The real question is what society has been created within this supposed fair land that allows people to justify stealing as a way to fit in and be part of society.  Answer - Opportunism.

We have produced a new breed of ethic within England.  It is our fault. I would like to suggest a new name - The Scrotii.  An evolution of our own that has forgotten,missed out or chose to ignore all ethics we have been taught and bought into the alternative reality that is presented to them via media, peers and society as a whole.  A reality that leads them to believe possession is 9/10ths of the law.  That possession of coveted goods is above all.  A society that has seen the word "Bling"  enter the Oxford Dictionary.  Blackberrys are easy to come by if you really really want one.  You have a goal there are a number of ways to achieve that goal, and the easiest option will probably be attempted first. Its a worrying thought that the amazing Run DMC may have given this generation the uniform they crave, which is a now a very very healthy industry.  They may have justification in the suggestion that they have had support from them taken away by politicians, but I would say they have assisted into this quagmire through the barrage of media images they will subject to everyday which certainly seems to be doom and gloom all the time (proletariat control perhaps?) and temporary fixes for the soul that are short lived, asides from the debt you incur one way or another. 

We chose to elect idiots for year upon year that have stripped this country, believed the lies feed to us and continued to elect these people into power and they laughed in our faces.  I propose a new form of government.  Each role is filled by the best person for the role.  The Health Minister would qualify for the role due to his vast experience within his field.  The Treasurer should have a fair knowledge of Maths, I would say.  The Prime Minister would still need to be the best motivator and team manager know in England.  We should try to apply all of the successful management skills we have and apply to Britain as would any top business, we could use all of the information to ensure that our business as a country is allowing us to be proud of the place we live in.  To profit as a nation, as a team.  Its also idealistic waffle.  Never going to happen.

We all have a percentage of Scrotii within us, some obviously more so than others.  My suggestion to everyone is to switch off the goggle box, turn up the music, put on a pair of crappy old shorts, a floppy hat and go and do the garden.