WHEN cyber-Tories aren’t moaning about not having a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty, they like to bang on about the so-called “intrusive state”. Iain Dale yesterday carried a letter published in Der Spiegel:
Sir, At the end of August I’m leaving London because I don’t wish my child to be forced into the kind of conformity where not only are school uniforms obligatory but even haircuts are regulated. That’s to say nothing of the ever present CCTV in schools or of the fact that even primary school kids have to give fingerprints.
Hmm. Aren’t Tories the ones who are most likely to complain about lack of uniforms in schools? And since when was the government responsible for regulating haircuts (good idea, though; must mention it to the manifesto group…)?
As for CCTV, I know of no MPs whose constituents have approached them asking for fewer CCTV cameras in their constituencies. The only people in Glasgow who I’m aware are against them are drug dealers who would rather not be filmed going about their business.
That CCTV cameras are some kind of threat to civil liberties seems to have become one of these accepted “facts” that barely qualifies as an opinion, so scarce is the evidence in its favour.
The regular accusation that we are living in what is close to, or is in reality, a “police state” is not only ridiculous – it’s offensive to the millions of people across the world who do live in such states and who regard the UK, rightly, as a beacon of freedom and democracy. So there.