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Friday, September 30, 2005

 

Ultimate Sanction

I’ve been working on this post on and off for the past few weeks. Personally, I’ve always felt it was a mistake for the death penalty to have been abolished and that the increasing murder rate might be stemmed by its re introduction.

There seems to be a sad tendency, especially with regard to ultimate sanction, (And always has as far as I can see) that the voice to scream loudest carries the argument. Despite numerous UK polls expressing support for the death penalty, the anti death penalty argument has always carried the day.

Now let’s look for example at the incidences of the Death Penalty being applied in the USA. If you believe the more hysterical ‘Anti’ side of the argument, innocent people are convicted and executed every week and the methods of execution are as cruel as they are bizarre.

Okay, now let’s look at the recorded evidence for the USA, culled from two major sources;
Southern Methodist University (Mostly Anti)
Prodeathpenalty.com (Very pro)

Total executions in USA for 2005 so far; 36, with only another 16 scheduled (By the look of the stats only 7 or 8 of these will actually be carried out)
Total executions for 2004; 59
Total executions for 2003; 65
Total executions for 2002; 71
Total executions for 2001; 66
Total executions for 2000; 85
Total executions for 1999; 98
Total executions for 1998; 68
Total executions for 1997; 74
Total executions for 1996; 45
Total executions for 1995; 56

The overwhelming majority of executions in the USA (100% 2005, 95% 2004) are carried out by lethal injection.
Hanging: Last recorded use 1995, Delaware (Once)
Electric Chair: Last recorded use 2004, South Carolina (Once) & once (Virginia) 2003
Gas Chamber: Last recorded use 1999, Arizona (Once)

Estimated total of “Innocent” (Could have got off on a point of law) people believed to have been executed in error since 1900; 23.

An Anti Bush web site ‘Texecutions’ claim that 9 “Innocent” people were executed because Governor George W Bush would not consider final appeals. For the real, Judicially tested information, try this site; Don’t the numbers differ?

The Prodeathpenalty.com site also has a link to a page listing methods by which condemned prisoners dodge the death penalty.

Having read the accounts of the crimes these people have been convicted of I wonder why it takes so long to edit them from the rest of the human race. Evil is often such a mild description of their acts. I’d even consider bringing back Florida’s ‘faulty’ electric chair for what some of these people have done. I know this sounds like blood lust or vengeance, but vengeance against the perpetrator of such horrendous crimes may sometimes be the only answer. At least there is a zero re-offending rate.

The argument that the perpetrator only did it because they were abused as a child, were / are a habitual drug abuser and are a good boy now should not be considered in itself a mitigating factor. Perhaps they were a ‘bad mo’fo’ who has now (Glory hallelujah!) got religion and thinks that is enough to engage public sympathy and thus secure a commutation / reprieve.

Should child killers be forgiven for the murder of their victims? What about those who perpetrate acts like this or this. I say that the death penalty can act as both deterrent and public vengeance upon the perpetrator. Perhaps the deterrent effect might make people who make this kind of disgusting threat think more than twice.

The public need some form of reassurance that something is being done to prevent the monsters walking free. Too much focus is put on the ‘rights’ of the perpetrator, and not enough on the rights of the public to go about their business unmolested. The penalty does not have to be applied for every murderer, just enough to make a dent in the reoffending rate.

Perhaps our politicians should consider starting by rescinding the 6th protocol of the European Human Rights act.

For UK statistics and details of the death penalty up to 1964, check here.
For another side to the history of the British death penalty, try here.

Please note that only three posthumous pardons have been given for convictions in error that led to the death penalty in 20th century Britain. There are currently no specific historical records of murder rates in the UK currently on line apart from here.

Makes a change from talking about parking restrictions doesn’t it?

Thursday, September 29, 2005

 

Another arrogant bastard

I’ve saved this particular piece because this incident went on report because it was a statistical ‘Threat’. Not that I felt much anxiety over it, just that I want to make sure it has been confused in the memory of the powers that be with so many other, similar incidents.
The driver in question was of a BMW, make and model not important, just let me say it wasn’t a new one eh? Do we detect mockery Bill? You betcha. I caught said leading light of the local tennis set loading cases of Pimms, ice and Lemonade into his jalopy on a taxi rank. True to my nature I began taking his vehicles details down preparatory to booking the car for being parked in a taxi rank. He deliberately ignores me like I am not worthy of his attention, so he’s obviously not going to move on then.

Fair do’s thinks I. Said item of muddle classes is in clear contravention of the parking regulations, so I filled in the last couple of necessary entries and hit ‘print’. Parking on a Taxi rank is one of those offences which does not need any observation time which makes the whole process a lot easier. You see – you book. Simple as that. So far so good. I’d just slapped the ticket on his windscreen and ‘happy snapped’ it in situ when chummy gets all humpty.

“What have you done that for?” Demands Mr Tennis coach.
“You’re parked on a Taxi rank, sir.” Say I, turning to find other nadirs to frequent. “You shouldn’t have stopped here at all.”
Mr Tennis coach then grabs at my shoulder (Bad move) “Take it off!” He demands.
“No, sir. I cannot do that.” Here we go, my right hand drifts down to my radio panic button. I’m standing perfectly still.
“Take it off!” Who does this dickhead think he is? He’s hanging onto my right epaulette. I dearly want to judo punch his silly lights out, but push down the old instinctive fight or flight reaction and hit the panic button instead. Epaulette is under strain; I can feel the stitching start to give. “Let go, sir.” This time there is a very distinct pause between ‘go’ and ‘’sir’. Can’t dipstick see he is really pushing his luck?
“Don’t you use that tone to me – I’m reporting you to your superiors! I’ve got your number!” Almost literally, I think. He lets go of my epaulette and roughly tries (With the emphasis on ‘tries’) to make me fall over by letting go suddenly. Much to his chagrin this doesn’t work. I’ve got my right foot back to counterbalance any attempt at a shove so I stay upright.
“You do that, sir.” Can’t he see that I’m not impressed? “I’m officer 515.”
“What’s your name!” Now it’s the wagging finger. Where’s the CCTV response? Come on guys, I need you now or I’ll have to look after myself.
At this point CCTV chime in loud and clear over the radio. “Have you visual 515, assistance on its way.”
“You all right 515?” Kerry, my line Manager, bless her, follows on loud and clear.
Tennis coach suddenly realises how far in the doodoo he is, making round to the drivers side door, waves threatening finger at me. Yeah, like I’m scared of you. “I’m reporting you!”
“Officer 515 sir, don’t forget.” I call after him as he slams the door and revs his engine at me. Git. I’ve put myself directly in front of a concrete bollard at the end of the rank and there is no way he can run me down if I side step behind it. The only thing that will take a hit is his insurance no claims, if he has one. I do not intend to be a new hood ornament on his pose-mobile. My parents did not raise any stupid children. (Poorly advised, often unlucky, but not stupid.)

Tennis coach drives off with much angry gesticulating and I breathe a heavy sigh of relief. Taxi driver has witnessed the whole thing. “You all right?”
“I’ll survive.” Better be gracious about it. “But thanks for asking.”
“Bloody hell. I couldn’t do your job.”
“I have trouble sometimes.” I’m not so bothered about being grabbed at and pushed, I’m bothered that chummy will only get a sharp letter from my employers, if that. Sometimes it amazes me at how supportive they are.

PCSO patrol catch up with me ten minutes later, I know both of them well. “Hello Bill, you all right then?”
“I’m in agony - Writers cramp mate.” I indicate note book in which I am trying to accurately recount the incident. They laugh. I’m okay, they’ve got more pressing things to do, their own radio’s are calling.

Two hours later, forms filled in and filed, I’m back on beat.
Incidentally, the ticket stuck, but as far as I know, tennis coach never got so much as a caution. Maybe he won’t park where he shouldn’t again. One can only hope.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

 

End of nights

Much as I enjoy being out on nights, our shift patterns really knock you around until you don’t know whether you’re coming or going. It’s not unusual for the nights team to turn up on duty asking “What day is it?” At the moment I’m feeling the strain of disrupted sleep patterns and subsequent disorientation.

The novel goes well and takes up almost every other hour of my waking day. Sometimes it feels like I’m climbing Everest without Oxygen, I get so giddy with the words. Mrs Sticker is just happy to know I’m not up to any mischief, and the dog only turns up when he wants walking or feeding. The kids have their own agendas to pursue, so, apart from birthdays and other stuff, they let me get on with the job in hand. I’m on the cusp of the home stretch, only another forty thousand (Out of a hundred and twenty thousand) words to finish. At my current rate of 1000 to 1500+ words a day I should have the first draft ready for inspection around the end of October. Failing that, a nervous breakdown and some serious sick leave are due. Fortunately, this blog and my working days out on the streets keep me (Relatively) sane.

Usual aggravation this evening with drunks and aggressively officious people (“I’m a personal friend of the Mayor!”) who last read the highway code thirty years ago. I’ve taken to keeping an up to date bookmarked copy in a belt pouch, just to shut them up. No, I’m not allowed to hit them with it, no matter what the provocation.

Thank goodness this is my last night shift for the next month and a half. Hi ho, all this and no body armour.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

 

Walking into it.

Now I’m a quiet sort of chap who likes to think he just gets on with things and tries to get it right, but there are some people who are just asking for it to happen.

This little event occurred this evening on late shift just before the sun went down. I was standing in the shade of one of our little corner of Chavlands remaining trees, filling out my notebook. Fellow shift member wanders past on other side of road without noticing yours truly. Bunch of council estate refuse rolls onto double yellows less than thirty feet in front of me, whistling, jeering and making obscene hand signals about sex and relocation at my colleague, completely ignoring me in shade of horse chestnut tree. Chavved up fiesta is left sitting on double yellows while contents go off to pollute some place of public inebriation.

I mean, under the circumstances what’s a bloke supposed to do? So I did. Just over five minutes later, said Fiesta was the proud recipient of a carefully handcrafted, personally autographed copy of a Penalty Charge Notice. No doubt they will forget to cough up, but the courts and bailiffs will get them eventually.

Sometimes you just have to think this is Karma in action.

Friday, September 23, 2005

 

Night Work

There’s always something a bit dodgy about working late at night. Traffic Wardens who work nights! I hear the cry of horror. Is the world coming to an end? Not really, we’re just there to keep the silly sods who think it’s their god-given right to park on double yellow lines, taxi ranks and disabled bays on their toes.

Late shift, as we call it is always more entertaining than days. The working atmosphere is a bit more relaxed from a personal point of view because the office wallah’s have gone home and are busy doing whatever they do when not working. There’s no management presence (Thank God.); just us, CCTV, the occasional Police patrol and the general dyslexic, amongst whom there seems to be an opinion that parking restrictions don’t count after 6pm.

When darkness comes, work takes on a differing pace. There’s generally only three or four of you on at any one time, so you have to cover more ground, usually from a van. Lone working practices mean that you have to keep within shouting distance, although we often have to ignore the strictest interpretation of the protocols when two of you are working different streets on a busy night.

The drunks are quite entertaining sometimes, and I’ve often broken off doing what I’m doing to watch two of them acting like rutting elephant seals, bellowing loudly and comically bouncing up and down against each others chests. It’s about then you give CCTV a quick call, tell them what’s going on, and indulge in a little sotto voce piss taking. Sometimes it gets a bit more serious, where two or three heroes try to kick the crap out of another, then the piss taking stops, and you make that call and get clear.

Such an incident occurred last night. Just about to return to base after patrolling some disabled bays I passed a noisy scene taking place in a side street. One guy was on the floor, out of it in more senses than one, and three others were attacking him. In these instances, we are specifically told not to attempt a solo rescue, as its firstly a breach of health and safety procedures and secondly the quickest way to start looking for your own teeth in the gutter. What I did do was watch discreetly after drawing CCTV’s attention to the incident with a call from my mobile phone until CCTV got a camera on the incident and told me a Police presence was on its way. This time I knew the guy who was on duty so didn’t get told to call 999 myself.

What I noticed about the assault was the following: each time an attack was launched on the guy on the ground it went like this; Much confused shouting made up mostly of ‘fookin’ this and ‘fookin’ that (That’s what it sounded like). Attacker lunges forward and makes a threatened kick, victim cringes into tight foetal position, second dummy kick followed by two or three badly aimed and very poorly executed kicks which either miss completely, or glance off arms or legs. Attacker retreats about four or five paces then repeats the pattern.

“Okay 515, Units on their way.” My radio suddenly came on full volume, loud enough for the distinctive ‘crackle - beep’ to be clocked by the attackers, halfway down the street. Fortunately, I must have been in silhouette so they weren’t to know that I was just a Parking Enforcement Officer and not real Police. Result; three heroes get spooked and leg it down the street, right into the welcoming arms of approaching real Police patrol, presumably where they got entertained by a night in the cells and subsequent visit to the magistrates court. I get told to stand back by CCTV. Ambulance arrives as my oppo Asif turns up in van to pick me up and get us both back to base for the end of shift. ‘Casualty’ gets unsteadily to his feet and staunchly refuses any help from Ambulance crew. So pissed those attackers couldn’t have hurt him much. Asif looks at me and shrugs (He doesn’t drink), all I can do is mime hopeless exasperation at alcoholic stupidity in general.

Must confess I was getting a bit nervous for a while about being stuck out there on my lonesome facing three hostile and volatile pissheads. The funny thing is, I’d still have done it the same way no matter if they’d suddenly decided that it was my turn to be their target for tonight. I think I was afraid, but I’m not so afraid as to stop patrolling the same street at the same time of night.

I think I must be going mad, but much as I sometimes hate the often statistic driven mindless street bashing and less than ideal management, I think I’d find it really hard to go back to doing any kind of office job.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

 

Coming out of the closet

Despite the irony that my job involves giving out Penalty Charge Notices to cars, I must confess to being a bit of a petrolhead. When I say a bit, I mean quite a lot really. For example; I really like watching BBCTV’s ‘Top Gear’, which is a welcome respite from the anodyne nature of a lot of it’s other programming. It’s ‘Star in a reasonably priced car’ section where a well-known public figure is filmed bombing round a racetrack in a bog standard commutermobile is an absolute hoot. For non-British TV watchers, this is a very eccentric and purely British thing, like bathtub racing – don’t ask.

On the flip side of that last sentence, there used to be regular local TV news features on footballing grannies or summer speed skating on Lake Windermere. Maybe it’s a comment on my rare TV viewing that I haven’t noticed many of these local news items, or is the great British Eccentric in terminal decline?

Well I’d like to make a declaration; I am a British eccentric. There, I’ve done it. I feel so much better now. My idea of paradise is to have a life where I can go hunting with a high powered rifle or bow and my dogs at the crack of dawn to bring back some venison for the freezer. To go white water canoeing down to the shops occasionally in a Canadian canoe (This have I done – had to walk back though.). To have my own summerhouse to write in where the domestic cares of the house are forbidden entry. To be found wearing a black Kaftan and cooking stuffed sheeps’ hearts for my dogs’ supper when the annoying relatives / religious maniacs come to call unexpectedly. To ride my motorcycle (Once a biker, always a biker) across wide open countries just to watch spectacular sunrises and sunsets. Oh yes, and to wear a hat like this to keep my one remaining brain cell warm and dry.

Okay; I haven’t hunted with a rifle since I was nineteen, my current dog is a gunshy housepet (Blame the kids). You can’t go rough shooting on a whim in England unless you have your own farm / estate (And I don’t). The garden is way too small for a separate shed to write in, since our current garden shed is full of household junk. My motorcycle needs money that I haven’t got spent on it, but I have ridden it across Europe. Yes, and some of the sunrises and sunsets were superb, as were those I have seen in the US and Canada. The annoying relatives and religious fanatics rarely call because my family are not rich or gullible, but the hat is worn on a daily basis. The white water canoeing desire is sublimated and restricted to a local boating lake.

Hey, who cares? I’m British and an eccentric - and you know what? I think I’m happy about it.

Friday, September 16, 2005

 

Angry

I have been saving this post for a month or so while the event fades in the memory of the powers-that-be, just to be on the safe side. It was mostly written while I was good and boiling mad.
I’m a bit rattled at the moment. Chap pulled up on double yellows who had just had their elderly Father keel over. Their frantic attempts on the mobile phone to get an ambulance seemed to be getting nowhere, so I stopped by to see if I could assist. I put a call out to CCTV to see if an ambulance had been summoned only to be told bluntly that they wouldn’t or couldn’t do it. I asked the distraught son if I might help and got a nod for my trouble so I took basic observations;

Pulse – No radial, no carotid (Trust me, I do know how to do this).
Breathing – None detectable by hand or mirrored surface.
Pupils – Unresponsive, dilated, no discernible reaction to light.
Flesh tone – already a yellowish cast to the skin with the rubbery
feel and appearance that comes from a complete lack of circulation.

Ambulance turned up at end of street within I think three minutes so they must have been close, I waved it in and passed the information on to the Paramedics. I couldn’t do anything else, so I patted distraught Son on shoulder and left it to the professionals. I still feel pretty awful about it.

Second incident was when a pedestrian had been knocked down and three of us, off our own bat, co-ordinated clearing a path for the ambulance ourselves and directed traffic past the incident via our radios. We do not have the ‘power’ to direct traffic but we did it anyway. The rest of the shift kindly kept off the air while all this was going on and all three of us went back to base thinking we’d done something really worthwhile for once. Not so. We got a bollocking and threat of disciplinary off Senior Manager for not immediately passing it over to the Police (Who were mostly busy with an RTA elsewhere and an armed robbery.). When the Coppers finally got to the incident, at least they had the grace to say thanks. We went straight to the Union and at least got the threat of disciplinary lifted.

There is something seriously wrong with our Senior Management. We do our job, which is supposed to be about ‘keeping the streets clear’ and when we have to demonstrate a little initiative to do the same we get shouted at. I don’t understand what planet he’s on. It sure as hell isn’t this one.

What really pisses me off is the total lack of help I got from one particular CCTV operator, so on top of being upset I’m bloody angry. What upset me even more was being told retrospectively that the procedure had changed.

I have only one response. Damn them all. I will act in accordance with my conscience at all times. If my soi-disant ‘superiors’ don’t like it they can fire me, but I am not mentally equipped to ‘pass by on the other side’ when I may be able to help.

Friday, September 09, 2005

 

Normal Service will be resumed as soon as possible

This is a service announcement. Due to unforeseen non-work related commitments like having to deliver a full length MSS to publishers in the near future, posting to this blog will become increasingly sporadic and erratic until late October 2005. We apologise for any inconvenience / distress / depression / fugues / hilarity etc this may cause visitors to this site and assure you that I will be back from time to time to have a rabid rant about something or other, whatever takes my fancy.

Answers to FAQ about MSS:

No, the story is nothing whatsoever to do with Traffic Wardens or parking restrictions of any kind, so don’t ask.
Yes, it is being written under my real name.
No, I haven’t got time to tell you what the MSS is about.
Yes, I’ve always written but I’ve only been a Parking Enforcement
Officer for the last eighteen months.
No, it isn’t definitely going to be published; just getting a publisher to look at it is an achievement in itself.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

 

Am I doing an unconstitutional Job?

Am currently following the blog of ‘Metric Martyr’ campaigner Neil Herron with extreme interest. Neil and his fellow campaigners have unearthed a piece of legal documentation that says that it may be unlawful and against the spirit of the 1689 Bill of Rights to issue Parking Tickets, because the Bill of Rights specifically says that no one may be imprisoned or fined without recourse to a court of law. The kicker here is that no one is sure if NPAS counts as a properly constituted court of law. Since the 1689 act is a piece of ‘constitutional’ legislation, which has never been repealed, as such it appears to have precedence over other acts. Now that will keep a few lawyers off the dole queue and no mistake.

My, isn’t this interesting? So if this is the case then any local authority which causes to issue what our friends in blue call a ‘Fixed Whizzer’ might be in for a bit of a sweaty time if such a legal challenge were upheld. They might end up having to repay all the fines. OO-er, up goes the Council Tax bill.

For those of you who are interested, these guys have put together some very swish flowcharts and tools, which may prove useful if you have been the victim of me or one of my contemporaries. Unconstitutional? Has oo been a naughty Mr Sticker den?

Think I'd better tune up my resume, pronto.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

 

Oh my achin’ feet etc.

One of the perks (Of which there are precious few) of being in an outdoor local authority job like mine, although some would say it is one of the penalties, is being out in the open air all day in all weathers. In my book, sunny days more than make up for the dull and showery, and you can get some serious vitamin D conversion in, which is nice. Now it appears there is a EU directive in the making, which if implemented, means we will have to cover up and smother in hot weather. This is a poor look out for any outdoor worker who is feeling the heat, especially construction workers, and even barmaids look to be caught out by these ‘cover up’ proposals.

I object to this. I’ve worked hard on my tan to the point where my forearms are nut brown and (To Mrs Sticker at least) quite sexy. So long as you don’t have to look at the graveyard pallor of the rest of my body this is great. Wearing long sleeved shirts in hot weather is uncomfortable and may possibly lead to increased body temperature followed by heat stroke, and we’ve had quite a few cases of that this year. We could of course carry lightweight air conditioning units with us, but that’s just plain silly. Perhaps we might get pulled off patrol when the sun gets too bright – right, like that’s going to happen. Maybe we’ll get some better kit – Dream on, Bill.

What the authors of said proposed directive seem to be trying to do is protect all people from getting skin cancer. However, making a kind of blanket injunction against exposure to the sun doesn’t take into account that when it comes to exposure, some people are less prone to getting one of the various kinds of skin cancer than others and to base calculations on one skin type would be plain silly. There’s a list of causes here to give you an idea of some of the predisposing factors for the various types of skin tumours.

On a not unrelated health and safety point, because of our councils purchasing policy, we tend to get stuck with kit that gets you hot and sweaty, even on relatively cool days. By way of an example, I bought a decent hat for under thirty five pounds three weeks ago and wear it to keep the elements off my thinning thatch when I am not at work. It is comfortable and well ventilated so I hardly sweat. Compare that to my current issue uniform cap, which gets hot and uncomfortable and stinks appallingly unless it is cleaned and deodorised twice weekly. Our Shirts etc are made of artificial fibre, which don’t ‘breathe’ very well, so twice daily showers are essential if your accumulated body odour is not to rise to levels where even you find it offensive and can make tramps keel over at five paces.

The other downside of the health and safety culture we live and work under is having to walk long distances in less than ideal footwear. Lets face it, if you’re on your feet all day you need the best walking boots you can get, whereas we (Because someone somewhere once got their foot run over by an irate motorist) have to wear safety boots, which are generally heavy, inflexible and hot. Rather like having to work wearing old-fashioned diving boots (See below).



In the past year, I have worn out two, read that carefully, two pairs of safety boots. See above photograph of right heel of latest pair, which I have just replaced out of my own pocket. See also above horror picture of foot after a full week on patrol. Man, that’s ugly. I was going to post a couple of pictures which showed my feet shortly after taking my boots off but decided against inflicting these on the genteel sensibilities of any readers. Suffice it to say that the veins were standing out like a 3D relief road map and the smell caused my dog to roll over with his paws over his nose. Considering some of the things he sniffs on a daily basis, that’s pretty bad. Mrs Sticker forced me into bathroom at virtual gunpoint and then wouldn’t let me out until I had washed thoroughly.

Hi ho. At least it keeps you fit.

Friday, September 02, 2005

 

Katrina Relief

There’s a bloggers fund raiser going on to help with the disaster fund for the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. For all you E-bay members, follow this link to find out about fund raising by auctioning off surplus kit. You can be a buyer or a seller and use your Paypal account to help.

Credit card direct donations to the American Red cross here:

My own contribution does not promise to be all that large as I don’t get paid megabucks, but I’m going to dig down under the sofa cushions to see what turns up.

Thanks to ussneverdock and NZ Bear for the information about the bloggers fund raiser.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

 

Yours Sincerely, Name and address witheld

I am currently concerned for the safety of my fellow bloggers & friends in the south and eastern USA that just got a visit from a pesky little critter called Katrina. The BBC is carrying their usual Global-warming-everyone-is-a-victim-everything-is-awful-lots-of-corpses-and-it’s-all-George-Bush’s-FAULT! coverage. Come on! The Americans of my acquaintance are a bit more robust than the folks we’ve seen on our TV’s of late. Yes, I know I don’t watch TV (Much) but the kids have had the coverage on non-stop and I’m in the next room writing. I occasionally stand in the doorway with an expression of thinly veiled disgust at the poor level of coverage.

Countless little acts of heroism from day to day folks must be going on down there and they’re all being ignored. We only hear from the defeatists and the beaten, never from the get up and get going folks. Or maybe they are the ones to tell the Journo’s to piss off and get out of the damn way while they get on with the job.

Same with Iraq, you just don’t hear about the guys who are trying to make a difference. You only see them when they come unstuck.

We as the public are fed a biased picture, which doesn’t reflect the real world. Just sound bites and the reporting media’s prejudices. Same for our bunch. We come in for a hell of a lot of flak from a greedy, uncaring public and we’re not allowed a forum (Short of this and other blogs like it) or to bite back. Since 1963 when traffic wardens were first introduced to police the on street restrictions they have been demonised and insulted. It is no wonder a lot of our guys develop a very surly and terse public ‘face’.

Not only that, our Senior Management are proving (To us at least) to be the kind of employer who treats their staff as ‘disposable assets’. Current word on the grapevine is that a large private company has approached the Senior Managers with several kinds of blandishments to take over the whole Parking Enforcement operation in our district. This has got to the point that whenever someone mentions ‘contracting out’ in the hearing of Senior Manager recently there has been a massive over reaction and overt, vociferous, denial.

The signs and portents are not good. Between the weather and the Job market, I think we’re all doomed.
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Location: British Columbia, Canada

Exasperated expatriate expostulations all the way from British Columbia, Canada. As if anyone really cared. Oh, I also watch Icelandic Volcanoes and seismic activity. Don't ask me why.

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