Policing by consent (of the police)

In a BBC Radio 4 programme about the relationship between the Conservative Party and the UK police, the presenter, journalist Robin Aitken, discusses the breakdown in the previously amicable relationship between the Tories and the police, harking back to the golden age of upstanding beat coppers who were trusted by the public. Roger Scruton pops up to talk of how the law in Britain is felt as the property of the people, and how the police are servants of the public and not an arm of the state. One interviewee wants to go back to the standards which prevailed thirty or forty years ago.

These would be standards of torture (Birmingham Six, Guildford Four, Maguire Seven), murder (Blair Peach, inter alia), political repression (Orgreave), and, more recently, in addition to established practice, the impregnation of political activists and the desertion of them and their children. All of the above has been covered up for by perjury.

Aitken mentions that for many years the only critics of the police were the `radical left’, where it would appear `radical left’ means `people who think the police should obey the law and not beat confessions out of people’. He is shocked, however, by the idea that a police officer would lie about a government minister saying `pleb’.


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