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graham christian
08-09-2011, 11:25 AM
Hi. Just to let you know what's going on here in England and especially London at the moment.

Over the weekend a man was stopped by Police and the result was he was shot dead. The how's and whys are yet to be investigated.

On Saturday there was family visiting the police station for information and they seemed to be left there all day without much forthcoming. Meanwhile there was a peaceful protest going on. That evening is where it all started.

A girl, apparently a relative of the deceased was arguing with the police and apparently ended up throwing something at them. She then got battered to the ground by five policemen. When her friend came and picked her up off the ground she then got battered back down again. The crowd had been shouting leave her alone she's only a girl and thus it all erupted.

This was in Tottenham, three miles from here, and a fuul blown riot thus ensued.

Now for the strange thing. On Sunday the following evening there were a couple more incidents of unrest and looting in two other areas of London.

On Monday everyone was talking about what's going on and then that evening we found out. The youth from all over London were in touch via blackberry phones organizing going out and looting wherever they wanted. So on Monday night mass looting was happening all over the place and the police were completely outnumbered and caught out. There was looting in Brixton, Clapham, Ealing, Cambden, Chalk farm, Peckham, Ponders end, Notting Hill, and more. Meanwhile it the spread outside of London to Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester and Bristol.

It's mainly an age group from as young as ten up to early twenties. It's like a totally new phenomenon. The politicians were all on their summer holidays. Kids are all off of school as it is the summer break.

Although it started as a political thing it morphed into some kind of game for the youth, a game of shopping with force. They seem oblivious to the distress caused, businesses ruined, buildings burnt down, people made homeless etc.

It seems to have become an explosion by disaffected youth.

Today the politicians have returned, meetings have been held, shops are closing early and 16000 police have been drafted in for tonight. I think they will be more forceful if anything happens tonight.

O.K. So that's the update. That's the current scene.

Regards.G.

graham christian
08-09-2011, 02:43 PM
It's now 8:30 pm. There's a riot started in Manchester. Looting in Wolverhampton. Looting in West Bromwich. Back in London there's currently a stand off between police and youth in Canning Town east London.

In Manchester at a shopping centre a line of police in riot gear were just confronted by a mob and have run off. Now it's a free for all, mob shopping with no police in sight. Very strange.

G.

Mary Eastland
08-09-2011, 03:17 PM
Thank you for the update, Graham...

graham christian
08-09-2011, 05:18 PM
Thanks Mary.
Things still happening in Manchester and Birmingham. Looks like mostly young youth saying things like 'We're getting ours'

One other new thing happening in parts of London is to do with football supporters. Usually the ones known for trouble, they are getting together on twitter etc and then going out to patrol their 'areas' and keep them safe from looters.

Regards.G.

Mike Sigman
08-10-2011, 05:35 PM
http://www.neijia.com/sendagun.jpg

Janet Rosen
08-10-2011, 06:49 PM
(sigh) a Sony warehouse that held the complete inventory of several small indie labels including Sub Pop has been burned pretty much to the ground. Many of these marginal labels were struggling as it was( this may finish them off.
Yeah that's sure hitting the powers that be where it hurts....not.

graham christian
08-10-2011, 08:14 PM
http://www.neijia.com/sendagun.jpg

Your point is???

graham christian
08-10-2011, 08:23 PM
(sigh) a Sony warehouse that held the complete inventory of several small indie labels including Sub Pop has been burned pretty much to the ground. Many of these marginal labels were struggling as it was( this may finish them off.
Yeah that's sure hitting the powers that be where it hurts....not.

Yes. Worse than that, they were attacking local small businesses and shops of their own communities. It was like they were all playing some kind of computer game. Probably that one about stealing cars etc.

Tonight it's been calm due to big police presence and rain. I think also due to people now waking up and sorting them out themselves. Lots of communities have now come together and put into motion their own solutions.

Football supporters, the league starts this coming weekend, have all turned against them as it could interfere with our national pastime. It's been surreal.

Regards.G.

lbb
08-11-2011, 07:55 AM
Your point is???

I'm guessing that that poster dates from WWII, Graham, and that it was intended as a joke (although not in the best of taste, perhaps). Whatever one's feelings about gun ownership and use of firearms, there's nothing remotely amusing about people's homes, businesses and workplaces being burned.

thisisnotreal
08-11-2011, 07:59 AM
Hope you guys are all okay there.
I can't believe how quickly this got completely insane.

Honestly; sometimes I feel it's like we're all 5 minutes away from undoing all of (our veneer of) civilization at any given moment.

Mike Sigman
08-11-2011, 08:28 AM
I saw a suggestion in a UK paper that anyone caught rioting be removed from the welfare roles. That might cause another riot, though. :straightf

Anthony Loeppert
08-11-2011, 09:49 AM
Hope you guys are all okay there.
I can't believe how quickly this got completely insane.

Honestly; sometimes I feel it's like we're all 5 minutes away from undoing all of (our veneer of) civilization at any given moment.

A lyric from a Beastie Boys song (http://youtu.be/4jUd9z4RUqE) (of all things) pops in my head reading this comment and others on this thread.
It takes a second to wreck it, it takes time to build.

lbb
08-11-2011, 10:36 AM
A lyric from a Beastie Boys song (http://youtu.be/4jUd9z4RUqE) (of all things) pops in my head reading this comment and others on this thread.

Besides time, it takes skill and commitment and, I guess, being the right kind of person. There's that old Sam Rayburn quote about how any jackass can kick down a barn, but it takes a carpenter to build one. One wrecker can undo the work of ten builders. The solution? Make sure that there are a hundred builders for every wrecker.

Keith Larman
08-11-2011, 12:03 PM
Watching I can't help but think of "Lord of the Flies".

David Maidment
08-11-2011, 01:15 PM
I saw a suggestion in a UK paper that anyone caught rioting be removed from the welfare roles. That might cause another riot, though. :straightf

There has been a petition for this on a government website; it has enough signatures to be a priority point for discussion by parliament very soon.

People in my city keep spreading rumours of riots in places where there are none, in attempts to kickstart them. We actually have a police officer here spending what looks like all of his day on Twitter having to debunk these rumours.

Mike Sigman
08-11-2011, 01:21 PM
People in my city keep spreading rumours of riots in places where there are none, in attempts to kickstart them. We actually have a police officer here spending what looks like all of his day on Twitter having to debunk these rumours.To see and hear the focus on a lot of US television, London is burning down and riots are spreading all across England (with officers coming in from Scotland to help quell the mess). YouTube videos of the mobs also give the impression that it is chaos and anarchy. Difficult to decipher exactly what is going on, but I never fully trust the focuses of the media.

Mike Sigman

thisisnotreal
08-11-2011, 01:39 PM
Yes. It is worrisome that the media itself does not seem to be a stabilizing influence.

Mike Sigman
08-11-2011, 01:46 PM
Seems to be a mood change because of the riots:

http://www.cityam.com/news-and-analysis/allister-heath/royal-fairytale-banana-republic

dps
08-11-2011, 03:09 PM
From the BBC News;

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-14458424

" Two girls who took part in Monday night's riots in Croydon have boasted that they were showing police and "the rich" that "we can do what we want"."

and

From The UK Daily Mail

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2024284/UK-riots-2011-Liberal-dogma-spawned-generation-brutalised-youths.html

" They are products of a culture which gives them so much unconditionally that they are let off learning how to become human beings. My dogs are better behaved and subscribe to a higher code of values than the young rioters of Tottenham, Hackney, Clapham and Birmingham.

Unless or until those who run Britain introduce incentives for decency and impose penalties for bestiality which are today entirely lacking, there will never be a shortage of young rioters and looters such as those of the past four nights, for whom their monstrous excesses were ‘a great fire, man'."

dps

Ketsan
08-11-2011, 06:33 PM
I saw a suggestion in a UK paper that anyone caught rioting be removed from the welfare roles. That might cause another riot, though. :straightf

Several city councils are looking into it. They do it already if an occupant of social housing causes trouble they're often evicted.

Ketsan
08-11-2011, 07:03 PM
Seems to be a mood change because of the riots:

http://www.cityam.com/news-and-analysis/allister-heath/royal-fairytale-banana-republic

There's a mood change but to be honest I think we'll come out of this stronger. Within minutes of trouble starting someone starts a facebook group or gets on twitter to organise the clean up the next morning. That's the kind of community spirit we've really not seen since the blitz.

I wouldn't say there's even a feeling of fear here anymore; everyone seems to be banding together more than anything be it to clean up or to organise groups to defend places. It was looking interesting on monday but now it's more anger and a feeling that it would perhaps be better for the looters health if they stayed at home with their new plasma screens and designer socks.

Things ended before they really got serious I think; another day or two and things would have gotten sticky.

SeiserL
08-12-2011, 05:31 AM
Thanks for the updates and insights.

I hope you and yours are safe.

lbb
08-12-2011, 09:41 AM
There's a mood change but to be honest I think we'll come out of this stronger. Within minutes of trouble starting someone starts a facebook group or gets on twitter to organise the clean up the next morning. That's the kind of community spirit we've really not seen since the blitz.

That is the best response that I can imagine. Kudos to those who are organizing and coming together to clean things up and undo the work of those who are gratified by destruction.

George S. Ledyard
08-12-2011, 01:15 PM
The lst time we had something like this was 1968 when Martin Luther King was killed. Every major citity im the country was burning. Give the fact that the social problems that created that situation haven't been solved, we are due for another repitition.
I figure we are setting it all up right now as we focus on budget cutting and cripple our social services while refusing to ask the rich, who are richer than at any time in our history, to pony up and pay a bit extra for their priveledge.

I remember machine guns on the Capitol steps. I remember the National Guard in the streets of our cities. We have no institutional memory... we'll all be surprised when it happens again. We'll talk about studies about causes... blah, blah, blah. It's still the same thing it has always been... the clash between the haves and the have-nots. Every once in while the great unwashed get uppity and make their presence known. We suppress them and go back to distracting them with football or soccer or whatever (in ancient Rome it was the games). The only place we have found to use these young men is in the military in the wars we use to maintain our economic power. But, as with Viet Nam, that can backfire when you have a combat trained group of young men returning to the same lack of opportunity they had before they left. Then you had combat trained uppity young poor men. It made for an interesting few years back in the sixties and early seventies.

We are headed there again for sure. It's only a matter if time. Anyone who thinks we don't have it in us over here didn't see Woodstock 2 or the WTO in Seattle. It's coming, it just needs a spark.

aikilouis
08-12-2011, 03:07 PM
You forgot the Rodney King riots.

graham christian
08-12-2011, 04:07 PM
Hi all.
It's Friday evening and all the rioting stopped a couple of nights ago.

It's been very surreal and in fact interesting. People are now lined up in courts and nearly all are getting custodial sentences.

The points I'd like to make which are unusual are as follows:

1) Many of those arrested were girls, a much higher proportion than I can remember for any other disturbances except anti-nuclear.

2) So many people involved are sorry and actually seem confused at how they got swept up in it all. There were all kinds of people you wouldn't think would be there, the latest being an ambassador for the olympics, ( a girl who has awards for community works etc)

3) My son tells me the latest communications going on on facebook etc. between all the youths.
a) First there are loads of football supporters all saying how they are ready to protect their areas and put any out of order youths back 'into order'
b) Then the mood having changed there are youths now taunting youths from other areas saying if you come to rob our shops you'll have us to deal with.

4) Meanwhile, different groups of people were already getting together on the third night and fighting back. There were 70 mixed Turkish and English in north london who protected their restaurants and fought off 200 rioters.

Then there was Southall, a very asian area of west London near Ealing. They had some trouble the first night and then got together and formed a community steward group. What was good about that was that the muslim, sikh and hindu leaders got together and worked as one.

5) All over the mood has changed. It's like it took 4 days before the adult population woke up and then things changed. I think someone spiked our tea!

Now we'll all listen to the old waffling from politicians, as usual totally oblivious to reality. Luckily it's the people who are really changing things. Meanwhile the police and politicians are bickering as to who should take credit for stopping them.

Back to the same ol same ol. I think I'll make all politicians do Aikido with emphasis on responsibility.

Regards.G.

George S. Ledyard
08-12-2011, 04:22 PM
You forgot the Rodney King riots.

There were places where they were bad but it was nothing close to '68 in terms of how wide spread and how severe they were (with a few local exceptions) There were a number of cities in which they quelled the potential riots right from the start with massive application of pepper spray. But OC spray wasn't legal in some states like California and tear gas just didn't cut it. Things got way out of control.

But things were crazier in '68... you had folks who still believed in the "Revolution". You had Viet Nam trained guys actively sniping at the cops and firemen who showed up to fight the fires, there were whole sections of cities like Detroit and Newark (where I worked, that looked like the London Blitz. Whole blocks burned out and not rebuilt for twenty years or more.

You literally had machine guns and barbed wire on the Capitol building steps in DC, armored personnel carriers in the streets... It was something. We have the potential for that again but I think it will be more like London for us next time. It won't be as overtly political as '68 was... Although in a few cities the gang problem is so severe that it could get crazy since they are in some ways better armed than the cops... LA would be a bad place in the next riots...

graham christian
08-12-2011, 05:47 PM
I'm guessing that that poster dates from WWII, Graham, and that it was intended as a joke (although not in the best of taste, perhaps). Whatever one's feelings about gun ownership and use of firearms, there's nothing remotely amusing about people's homes, businesses and workplaces being burned.

O.K. Thanks for that. I thought I was on his ignore list anyway.

Regards.G.

graham christian
08-12-2011, 05:49 PM
Watching I can't help but think of "Lord of the Flies".

It was quite like that actually.

Regards.G.

Janet Rosen
08-12-2011, 07:25 PM
Graham thank you for the latest update. It is heartening that once again as we often see in various disaster situations enough folks will join together, organize just as much as they need to, and stand to make a difference.

Walter Martindale
08-12-2011, 10:40 PM
Your point is???

I'd make the point that the UK is a very strange place - considering the appeal for guns for defending the homeland back in the 40s. Now, if you find a gun that's been dumped over your fence, take it to the police and turn it in, and it's not registered to your license (if you have a license) you get an automatic 5 years in the slammer. That happened to a retired soldier recently. Another instance was a granny turning in her late husband's Webley (unregistered, unreported, banned after Dunblane) and getting sent to the pen for 5 years. Cops are given no discretion in charging, and the courts have no discretion in sentencing.

Way back when, men in POM land were expected to arm themselves... Remember all the old Sherlock Holmes movies "Watson, do you have your revolver?"

Now if you confront someone who's attacking you, (in Canada, too) you have to defend yourself by running away or by using only sufficient force to minimize harm to the attacker and stop the attack... If you commit self defense that's a little too vigorous, you get per... sorry - prosecuted for harming the guy who attacked you when you interrupted his burgling your house/shop/car.....

dps
08-12-2011, 11:36 PM
Now if you confront someone who's attacking you, (in Canada, too) you have to defend yourself by running away or by using only sufficient force to minimize harm to the attacker and stop the attack... If you commit self defense that's a little too vigorous, you get per... sorry - prosecuted for harming the guy who attacked you when you interrupted his burgling your house/shop/car.....

Well yes, you show your assailant love and compassion, do him/her no harm because you would not want to alienate them.


Do no harm.

Isn't this the basic philosophical principle of "The Art To Peace"?

dps

David Maidment
08-13-2011, 07:35 AM
One nice story I heard from a guy I work with who lives in Birmingham is that apparently all of the Coventry City fans and Aston Villa fans were banding together. I know almost nothing about football and its politics, but even I know that that's pretty amazing.

Largely the media have over-reported the Hell out of this. A few major English cities experienced terrible riots, but if you want to look at it percentage-wise, almost all of England experienced no trouble whatsoever. That doesn't make things any better for the people who were hurt, killed or lost their businesses, of course, but it's still worth considering.

What annoys me most is all the excuses that people are coming out with. They're blaming the parents or 'broken society' or any number of things. Every time something bad happens, the same fingers get pointed at the same 'problems'. And yet, no one seems to realise that they're just blaming the catalysts. Ultimately, Humans are animals (or evolved from animals, if you wish to put the species on an undeserved pedestal) with basic selfish directives to ensure survival. In 'civilised' society, we tacitly agree to behave due to a self-supporting framework of rules that we call 'morals' and we tut and call our repressed animal side 'evil'. And every time those morals disappear or collapse for whatever reason, we just revert back to how we truly are as a species. And that's the problem; that, ultimately, this is just human nature, no matter how much we try to fool and control ourselves with our morals -- as animals humans still have the need to be 'evil' for survival. This isn't something that we've evolved out of yet.

I believe it was put best when it was said that society is only three meals away from revolution.

graham christian
08-13-2011, 11:19 AM
I'd make the point that the UK is a very strange place - considering the appeal for guns for defending the homeland back in the 40s. Now, if you find a gun that's been dumped over your fence, take it to the police and turn it in, and it's not registered to your license (if you have a license) you get an automatic 5 years in the slammer. That happened to a retired soldier recently. Another instance was a granny turning in her late husband's Webley (unregistered, unreported, banned after Dunblane) and getting sent to the pen for 5 years. Cops are given no discretion in charging, and the courts have no discretion in sentencing.

Way back when, men in POM land were expected to arm themselves... Remember all the old Sherlock Holmes movies "Watson, do you have your revolver?"

Now if you confront someone who's attacking you, (in Canada, too) you have to defend yourself by running away or by using only sufficient force to minimize harm to the attacker and stop the attack... If you commit self defense that's a little too vigorous, you get per... sorry - prosecuted for harming the guy who attacked you when you interrupted his burgling your house/shop/car.....

Obviously you like guns Walter. Those instances given need to be balanced with times that's not true of which there are many more but of course the mad ones make the news.

Just yesterday a man chased off three raiders in his shop by smacking them with a cricket bat. No arrest, no prosecution, everyone patting him on the back. But I suppose the good stories don't get much reaction from the loud noisy people with an axe to grind.

The extremes on both sides of the coin are of course crazy.

Regards.G.

Lorien Lowe
08-18-2011, 03:16 PM
2) So many people involved are sorry and actually seem confused at how they got swept up in it all. There were all kinds of people you wouldn't think would be there, the latest being an ambassador for the olympics, ( a girl who has awards for community works etc)
Mob psychology: get into a large group with emotions running high, and critical thought goes out the window. It was great when we were troops of primates fighting off leopards; not so beneficial in a city.
I've felt the joy and strength that comes from uniting with a group in a single purpose (in crew races, for my case); I don't know if I, personally, could resist the drive to move as one with people I see as my cohorts in that kind of situation. I'd like to think that I could, but I don't know.
It's why inciting a mob is a crime, most places.