Tuesday, 21 April 2009

You Were Driving Perfectly Sir, Now Blow Into This Tube

Judging by the volume of comments on this article detailing the government's latest plan to criminalise every single British driver, Labour may well have lost a few more voters. Excellent.

One of the measures planned is that of random breath tests, the benefits of which the Pub Curmudgeon has calmly dismantled with this analysis.

In fact, of course, “random breath testing” is nothing of the kind. That implies that the police will set up roadblocks and stop every seventh vehicle, or whatever. But what is really being proposed is “unfettered discretion”, an entirely different concept, that the police can test any driver, whenever and wherever they choose, regardless of any suspicion or evidence.

What this measure will do is further erode the basic principle of a free society that the police should not treat anyone as a suspect without due cause. It has been described as “sus on wheels”, but in reality it is even worse that the old “sus” law as there is no requirement even to demonstrate the slightest suspicion of offending.

He also points out the potential threat this measure may pose for pubs. You know, the businesses that Labour supposedly now want to 'save' after they began killing them off on July 1st 2007.

The 'scorched earth' hypothesis with this government is beginning to seem believable. Is the plan really to make Labour unelectable for a generation or more, or are they so cosy with single issue pressure groups and fake charities that they have simply lost touch with reality?


Curmudgeon said...

Ta for the link :-)

You do have to wonder why NuLabour hasn't returned to the idea of cutting the drink-drive limit, which really would administer the final coup de grâce to pubs.

Perhaps best not to tempt providence on that score.

One consolation is that the electoral timetable means that a lot of these proposals are likely to end up kicked into the long grass.

banned said...

The Police have, in effect, been able to carry out random stops of cars and breath tests for decades, you give up many of your supposed civil rights the moment that you get behind the wheel ( including having to prove your identity ).

On a more reassuring note. The new 'road safety' proposals include 'encouraging' local authorities to reduce the speed limit in built up areas to 20mph ( despite the lack of evidence to prove that this reduces casualties and the eco-harm done by driving slowly ).
Much of my city has been covered with such lowered limits for a while now but no-one takes the slightest notice of them, including buses and Police cars.