Rise of the corporation

December 23rd, 2008 § 3 comments

The Times:

The government has been accused of trampling on individual liberties by proposing wide-ranging new powers for bailiffs to break into homes and to use “reasonable force” against householders who try to protect their valuables.

Under the regulations, bailiffs for private firms would for the first time be given permission to restrain or pin down householders. They would also be able to force their way into homes to seize property to pay off debts, such as unpaid credit card bills and loans.

The government, which wants to crack down on people who evade debts, says the new powers would be overseen by a robust industry watchdog. However, the laws are being criticised as the latest erosion of the rights of the householder in his own home.

We’re fucked here, aren’t we?

Lets just take one scenario here. You come home from work/holiday/the shops and find your door kicked in. You enter the house to find it’s been ransacked. You enter the living room. The telly, the DVD player. Gone. The draws of the side board are shut, but you know that someone has been going through them. You go upstairs just dreading to what you’re going to find. In one room after another, chests of drawers have been rifled. Someone has gone through all your most intimate items. Your business filing. Wage slips. The jewellery gone as well.

How do you think that’s going to feel? Thinking that someone has broken into your house and stolen your belongings, that’s bad enough, but when in reality the ‘thieves’ have had the law on their side and are allowed to ransack your home, when even the police can’t just walk in, is an abomination.
Now you have all the upset, distress and associated hassle of having to get it all back because it turns out it wasn’t you that owed the bank/loan company/district court money. It was the people that lived where you do previously. Or you just happen to have the same name as some one who owes money. Or it could just be a completely random reason why you have appeared on the bailiffs records.
How does that feel? I bet you’d be feeling a bit shit and angry about it all. Good job you’ve got a strong character and are able to deal with the stress by someones’ typo. How fortunate that you happen to have enough savings to get you by while you claim back everything from the bailiffs. Just remind me, how much do lawyers cost? Because I bet it won’t be a quick and easy process.
It’d be hard but you’d survive the experience. What about the old lady next door? Would she? What’s she going to do when the bailiff sticks his boot through the door?
Or how about the ‘highly excitable’? Ending up being pinned to the ground with a broken arm? Or worse.

I could just about bear it if the Police or Customs burst through the door, with the proper paperwork chasing proper criminals, but these private contractors, for civil debts? No. fuck off. If the state wants to enter my fucking house it can fucking well do it itself.

What the fuck is the world coming to when a private entity is given authority to trample all over the rights of an individual.

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