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..There's a little Samuel Pepys in all of us..

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

A couple of points of interest this morning..
Big Brother has taken a step closer.. Police on the beat will be carrying a biometric device, which will take your fingerprints on the spot.. right there on the street.. and compare it to a national database giving them such information as whether or not you've given them your correct name.. whether or not your TV license is paid.. whether or not you own a car and if it's properly tagged and insured.. whether or not you're in the country legally.. This, of course, is the natural progression from the issuing of National Identity Cards..
As has been mentioned here before, the average person walking about London is photographed more than 300 times..
That's a matter for some concern..

And it was once the benchmark for the rest of the world.. a British education..
But it appears a government study indicates that one in eight schools on this island, are sub-standard by any yardstick..
It might quite reasonably be argued that much of the problem actually stems with the students themselves, with the values instilled at home. But it is more apparent that there is a general malaise among the young, who live with an uncertain employment future, and a sense that what they're learning is either too much for them, or has no market at home.
There is also to be factored in, the quality of teaching these kids are getting.. Teachers, stripped of any authority, deal with what most of us would consider imposible situations on a daily Basis. Disinterested, disrespectful, disruptive, and frequently violent students make it problematic to work through a syllabus..
One has to put the blame on the trend, which perhaps peaked in the 1990's, which dictated that anyone was deserving of a University Degree.. that all students were equal.. And this, besides being absolute rubbish, has led to the development of an ethos which allows for no separation by ability.. and no advantage taken of those skills which, while not requiring a Degree, does demand manual ability, if not talent..
More and more it becomes obvious that while the government is shovelling cash into the education system, it's nothing more than a stop-gap.. That cash would be better spent establishing technical wings in our schools, and a return to an apprenticeship system..
It's a certainty that we have more than a sufficiency of Social Workers and bureaucrtats.. equally a certainty we have a shortage of skilled machinists, and designers who can work out the dimensions of an area without the use of a calculator..

Some three years ago, it was noted in this journal that, in an effort to bring down drug-related crime, it might be considered taking those who are addicted to heroin, and thus theft, assault, in extreme cases murder.. should be precribed their dosage on the NHS..
The Deputy-Chief Constable of Nottinghamshire has announced that in his opinion, this option has it's merits.
The average heroin addict needs, conservatively, £15thousand p/a to support their habit.
This means they must, through whatever means open to them, acquire at least £50p/a.. and that's if you're dealing with a generous dealer who'll give you 30 pence on the Pound..
Literally millions are spent annually on Court costs to try these addicts, and then the State is left with the bill to maintain them, three hots and a cot, for whatever sentence is meted out..
The entire situation is risible..
We are running out of prison cells in this country.. it is a dire situation.. some prisoners serving their sentences in police station holding cells..
Now, while in no way advocating the use of drugs the likes of heroin, it must be said that an addict will remain an addict until he/she decides they no longer want to be. Some will never decide to quit. This is an indisputeable fact, and our manner of dealing with these peculiar personality types has manifestly been a failure.
It's time we realised that, as a society, we cannot save everyone.
Rank hubris to assume we can.

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