Tuesday, 24 April 2007

The Police state formerly known as Britain


Any expat who chooses to no longer live in Britain can probably give you 1001 reasons why not and, here are another 266 of them ...

In an article entitled, The state has 266 ways to enter your home, Philip Johnston, Home Affairs Editor at the Telegraph, says: "A report from the Centre for Policy Studies says that an Englishman's home is less his castle and more "a right of way'' for police, local government officials and other bureaucrats."

Masses of new grounds for entry have been added to the law in recent decades, says the article, "some of which have their origins in EU legislation". The wording is not quite strong enough for me to sniff Euro skepticism, but I imagine that has something to do with it. It makes me wonder what the situation is in other countries? None of them, that I am aware of, seem as frighteningly dictatorial. In Spain, just as an example, the right to "quiet enjoyment" of your home is written into the constitution.

Generally, the premise was that, if you know you haven't done anything wrong, then you have nothing to worry about, but how can one know if one has not unwittingly violated rule number 265 - I mean, you can't know them all off by heart - or you could become mistakenly accused of any of them?

Add to it, "Laws now going through Parliament will give bailiffs additional powers to enter homes in pursuit of traffic penalty debts." Blimey, they'll be bringing back Dickensian Debtor's Prisons next and I really do think that the whole thing has gotten way out of hand.

The state has 266 ways to enter your home ...

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