Wednesday, 10 August 2011

London Riots - Stating the bleeding obvious

Last night, with an overwhelming police presence, London Town was quiet, by and large the rioters and looters stayed at home. So what changed? The people in charge, Boris, Theresa May, David Cameron, had decided to come home off holiday. Decisions were actually made and action taken to get a grip.

We can't expect them to live without holidays, but is it too much to ask to expect them to go at different times? It seems to me that if it takes 4 days for the authorities to get a grip, then there is a huge logistical and planning failure. People on big wages have failed. Sad really


Joel said...

Coincidence, surely? If the leaders of our police forces and other large public organisations are unable to make decisions without the presence of politicians whose only previous experience of executive power was sending out some press releases or deciding what font to print an editorial in then we truly are fucked.

Rog T said...

The head of the met is only "acting" due to the previous head being forced out because of the phone tapping scandal. They aren't making decisions, because when they do, the politicians make them a scapegoat, rather than supporting them. That is why there is drift.

the last two Met Police chiefs have been forced out for political reasons. I'm not surprised they don't make decisions without the man at the top agreeing

Joel said...

But putting an extra 6000 (or whatever it was) officers on the streets of London last night was not a sensitive decision that the commissioner couldn't take without the mayor in town. More significantly, if the direct control of politicians is so important, why did things go so wrong last night in Manchester and Birmingham, even when Cameron was back in the country?

Politicians should be setting policy, strategy and holding people to account. I don't want them anywhere near operational decisions (and they ought not to want to be there either).

And there's no leadership issue here in terms of influencing the rioters - I'd be surprised if most of the rioters even knew who Boris Johnson is. If anything, I think it's more likely that they were influenced by the riotwombles.