Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Brit Blame Game

Parts of the Brit media, including our own Tim Worstall, are demanding the heads of London cops for the mistaken killing of de Menezes. A sister of one of the 7/7 victims puts them to shame.

The London Times has run front page stories attacking the police on Menezes for at least the past 10 days, ignoring the other 52 dead. Now it's accusing the cops of wiping CCTV coverage of the killing.

Staff say Stockwell Tube shooting was caught on camera
Dead man’s family accuse police over riddle of CCTV tapes which officers said were blank

Their story is unverifiable innuendo, and chasing that hare merely adds more load on the cops - who, in case you've forgotten, are trying to prevent the next slaughter.

Tim Worstall intones (my emphasis):

Something went wrong with the system. Someone, somewhere, must be held accountable for that. It doesn’t matter that "we are at war", whenever and wherever there is such an error there has to be someone to carry the can, for if there is not then there is no sense of responsibility in the system.

Here's a more balanced take by the sister of one of the murdered 52.

The sister of a victim of the London bombings yesterday demanded an end to the "crucifying" of the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, who is facing calls to resign after the shooting by police of Jean Charles de Menezes.

A Romanian immigrant, Mrs Gorodi condemned the hysterical nature of the criticism directed at Sir Ian Blair and asked why the victims of the atrocity appeared to have been forgotten.

She is waiting to receive some of her sister's body parts and said she had barely begun to grieve.

"I just think it is shocking," she said. "The whole nation has forgotten what happened a few weeks ago. Fifty-two people died in that bombing but they have been totally forgotten. Everybody is hysterical about finding someone to pay for that poor young man who died.

Mrs Gorodi had taken her sister to Mill Hill East Tube station on the day of the attacks, so she could get to her surgery in Knightsbridge, central London.

"People have lost sight of the bigger picture," she said. "We need to support the police right now, not crucify one man. This is unprecedented in British history. He [Sir Ian] is doing the best he can.

"I am sure the police are doing their best to correct their mistake. "But it was an accident. Nobody is asking us who do we want to pay for our loved ones. No one is asking us if we are angry, or do we want to see some kind of justice.

"But we are suffering too. We have just buried our dead. We have not even started to grieve. These were real atrocities. This is real and this is terrible."

Mrs Gorodi buried her sister 40 days after she was killed. She will have a second burial when she receives her remaining body parts. She identified her sister's remains but would not allow her mother to see her. "Imagine. Your sister coming back to you in pieces. Imagine, you take someone to the station and they return like that."

The manipulators of Mrs. de Menezes should hang their heads in shame, but being lefties, they won't.

The Times and Tim Worstall aren't lefties, but are showing one of the nastier sides of the modern Brit character - somebody must be blamed for every accident. (I think this attitude is a recent infection from the EU).

But accidents happen all the time, particularly when people have to make split-second life-or-death judgment calls when mentally and physically stressed. And they're nobody's fault!

Blaming people for every accident makes the world less safe, because rather then avoid future accidents (which they cannot), people move away from tasks that risk accidents. For example, in the business world of Customer Support, when management penalizes support engineers for customer problems, support quality plummets. Because the engineers learn that supporting customers is painful, and take the easiest avoidance which is to flee from customer support!

So, the Times and TW should grow up, support the families of all the 53 dead, and stop distracting the people fighting to keep us safe.