Wednesday, 8 July 2009

An Early Epiphany

When I was about 14 or 15 and starting to get a vague handle on the workings of the world I was subject to a valuable learning experience.

I attended the local Grammar school that setted us for various subjects and consequently we were often in foreign classrooms.

On one occasion, first period after morning break I and my mates were treated such. I cannot recall the subject. The bloke I set next to and I used to race slot cars and we had spent the break discussing plans for the next hot shot scratch build and reading the new regs issued in an A5 sized paper pamphlet by the ECRA. We went into the lesson and I put all the books I had been carrying that were not relevant to the subject on the top right hand corner of my desk. We were sitting roughly in the middle of the classroom opposite the masters desk a couple of rows back.

During the lesson my pile of books slipped a bit and my eye was caught by a note on the cover of the ECRA rules and I idly looked at it and then pushed it up under the book pile. Whereupon the master yelled at as to what I was reading. The usual 'nothing sir' 'yes you were' exchange then took place and a demand was made for me to hand over the pamphlet, which I was reluctant to do given this masters reputation. He kept yelling and I said 'OK sir, but I was not reading it and you will give it back to me at the end of the lesson won't you?' 'Yes' he said. Took the pamphlet and tore it up.

This made me a bit cross, and I told him he had lied, which as you might imagine went down like a lead balloon and the latter part of the lesson deteriorated a bit.

There was then a bit of a discussion. I told him he'd lied. He denied it. I told him he had no right to destroy my property and an apology and replacement was required. Things got more heated. It was suggested that I bend over. I told him to get stuffed, as I don't take orders from liars. 'How dare you call me a liar' he said, 'I am the law here and you will do as I say'. I told him he wasn't the law, he was in authority and as subject to rule of law as the rest of us, and he'd lied and destroyed my property.

By this time things were getting very out of hand and I was marched off to the deputy head master (an excellent bloke). The master told his side of the story and and explanation was demanded of me.

I said, 'Mr Liar here has destroyed my private property for no good reason and I want him to replace it now'. As you might expect this was not what they all wanted to hear and it was again suggested to me that things might get hot. By this time it was shit or bust as far as I was concerned. I had got to that reckless stage where I realised that there was nothing they could do or say that was going to phase me.

The Deputy Head (a good bloke) sent the offensive lying shit on his way and told me to report to the Headmasters study that afternoon after school. I refused. This wasn't a good idea as it made the deputy head very cross. So I was immediately marched off for judgement to the Head.

The head was a prick. I thought he was a prick at the time and I still do. 'Bend over boy, I'm going to beat you'. 'Nope'. There was a bit of struggle out of which I came off best.

I was then threatened with suspension. 'Yes please'. 'And you will do detentions for a week.' 'No, I won't. Well, not unless Mr Liar does too.' Stand off.

I was sent outside and the Deputy Head (good bloke) and the Head (prick) had a discussion.

The upshot was I was put in detention for week. I never went to one of them.

I demanded my restitution. It never happened.

I never called the lying master Sir or by his name again.

The lesson I learned from this?

That authority is not law. That the authorities are just as subject to the rule of law as the rest of us. In this case Mr Liar had flouted the rule of law not me. The deputy head knew it, and he knew that I'd figured it out.
So what is this all about?
This is all about Gordon Brown and the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 and the FSA, FOS and FSCS.
These totally failed outfits completely confuse their authority with the rule of law. The way Brown set them up allows them to make law. Erm, excuse me, but how is that?. The UK is a representative democracy and law is made by Parliament or by the courts interpreting Parliament. Parliament is Sovereign. This means that we the voters are Sovereign. Yet the FSA has arbitrarily decided that the well established principle of a 15 year long stop to protect professional advisers of all types from stale claims should not apply to IFA's. Clearly the FSA is confused as to the difference between authority and the rule of law.
It gets worse. The FSA has a lot in common with the GDR Stasi. As communism imploded and the authority of the Stasi waned it gave up any pretence of discretion and just resorted to shooting people. The FSA has failed and, quelle surprise, it's fines tripled last year. It's metaphorically just shooting people.
The same problems apply to the FOS and FSCS. These carry on like extra statutory bodies making up rules and law as they go along. These are not the authorities. These are authoritarians.
This mad bureaucratic socialism of which the FSA/FSCS/FOS are just the manifestations in my part of the commercial forest has completely abandoned the rule of law and set up an authoritarian or even totalitarian series of apparatchiks outfits to enforce its will on all of us. The law just doesn't come into it. The FSA operates like the manager of a nationalised industry and creates prescriptive rules under which the industry must be run. Sounds like nationalisation to me.
At the same time, like all Socialist regimes throughout history New Labour sees the rule of law as either an inconvenience to be ignored or something to be manipulated in pursuit of its totalitarian agenda. All of the quangos they have established have this 'we are the law attitude'. They have to be re-educated.
In the last few weeks we have seen the publication of two more bureaucratic agendas, the RDR and the banking regulatory reform white paper. Both of these are bureaucratic socialist totalitarian publications and neither has anything at all to do with improving the rule of law. They are both about more authoritarianism.
This must be stopped.

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