Home Guard, British Style
Samizdata is sensibly skeptical about the Blair Government's attempt to reassure citizens that it's OK to kill burglars.
This saga tells you all you need to know about Blair's government.
Burglary rates in the UK have risen rapidly on Blair's watch & are now higher than the US. Following a recent trial, many Brits concluded that they will be jailed if they defend themselves against intruders. This plus a spate of burglaries in which householders were wounded or killed led to a campaign to provide legal cover for the use of force against intruders (current law says it has to be Kofi-Annan-style "reasonable"). Blair can't or won't change the law, and has issued a flier telling citizens that there is no problem. In the UK's modified monarchy, that's the end of the debate.
However an election looms, so why isn't he granting the popular request?
The reason is that Blair administration is very weak managerially. With one exception his managers have been captured by the elites they are supposed to direct. In particular, he's put a lawyer with no managerial experience in charge of the entire legal system. Judges in the UK are appointed, not elected. So naturally they are the elite of the elite & tend to the left of the Massachusetts Supreme Court. And they fight like crazy to maintain their monopoly of violence.
Blair is powerless. His chosen man (no doubt the least bad he could find) is:
a) on side of the elite (ruling that "Burglars have rights too", and assailing British soldiers), and
b) even if he wanted to change the organization, lacks the skills.
So, expect the Blair to be hammered at the next election, and soon after hand over to the only decent manager in the team, Gordon Brown.