Saturday, January 27, 2007

Naught For Your Comfort ... Again

Actually, that's not true. Ageing hippy academic and Master-lookalike Rod Morgan, head of the so-called Youth Justice Board, spat the dummy and resigned, claiming too many ickle kiddiewinkies were being banged up. I thought banging up small children was what this government ... never mind.

Though somebody loves him, even the government thought he was crap.

Newsnight said he told the programme he had been working behind the scenes in the Home Office trying to get a change of policy.

But when ministers decided to advertise his job rather than extend his contract for another three years, he chose to resign and tell his staff and the BBC about his concerns.

He said: "It's self-evident that you can't occupy a post such as mine if ministers don't have confidence in you and, if you come to the point where you think that is clear for all parties to see, then it is your duty to go, and that is why I am going."

The BBC give you the Guardian perspective.

"But Mr Morgan could not be accused of being an "ivory tower" academic divorced from the realities of the criminal justice system."

Oh yes he can !

"Throughout his years of research, he worked as a lay magistrate and chairman of a youth court."

My Lord, Exhibit A. I rest my case.

The rest is bad news.

Smackheads ! We'll pay you not to take drugs !

Drug addicts could win prizes including televisions and MP3 players in clinic lotteries to help them keep off drugs, a Government advisory agency recommended yesterday.

The prizes could be worth £20 to £100 in incentive schemes being suggested by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (Nice), which turned down a new bowel cancer drug for use on the NHS three days ago.

A second proposal from the consultation document is for addicts to receive £10 food vouchers if they keep off drugs such as heroin or cocaine.

Young people apparently need encouragment to masturbate.

Children should be shown explicit videos of masturbation as part of sex education, campaigners said yesterday.

Many pupils form impressions of sexual activity from internet pornography and need better lessons at school, said Rebecca Findlay of the Family Planning Association.

I forget how much taxpayer money the FPA gets, but it's a lot.

And this tale which tells us more about how the rights culture is rotting our criminal justice system than any number of cross judges.

A mother has spoken of her fury after police refused to chase her sons' stolen motorbikes — because the thieves weren't wearing helmets.

Pauline Nolan, of Droylsden, Greater Manchester, claims traffic officers told her they could not pursue the pair in case they fell off and sued the police force.


Anonymous said...

"Throughout his years of research, he worked as a lay magistrate and chairman of a youth court."

Anyone who has had any professional dealings with the Magistrates' Courts will tell you that the lay magistrates are notoriously out-of-touch. They tend to be well meaning, middle class do-gooders, and are generally pretty gullible - they'll believe whatever sob story the poor criminal (or 'victim of society', as they are now known) comes out with. I once spoke with a social worker (of a slightly tougher disposition than the Guardian-reader stereotype) who had been involved in bringing a mother to court for constantly allowing her children to play truant. The mother, an utterly unfit parent, came out with the requisite sob story, and the magistrates turned on the social workers, demanding to know why they hadn't helped the woman to control her own children. This is a quite typical example of the attitude of lay magistrates.

I think that a lot of crime in this country could be reduced were Magistrates' and Youth Courts a bit more intimidating, and a lot tougher on the criminal. As it is, they are designed to be "user-friendly", and for habitual offenders it is no more unnerving going before the magistrates than it is going to collect one's benefits. A bit of oak-panelling, wigs and gowns, and, most importantly, a real prospect of real punishment would, I believe, intimidate many of these people into going straight, thereby removing many of the petty scum - muggers, shoplifters, etc - that clog up the legal system.

Anonymous said...

But they don't want the legal system to work more efficently otherwise many of their lawyer friends would be out of a job, and thats not going down well at the next wine party.

Jasper Goodballoon said...

Rod Morgan may well have done an appalling job; I hadn't heard of him unil late this week. He is a dreamboat though.

Anonymous said...

That Ealing magistrate isn't exactly "Mr. Fang", is he?

Anonymous said...

Good riddance. I watched this clown on the BBC spweing his liberal rubbish. No one bothered to challenge him of course. The man is a fool and we are well rid of him.

Anonymous said...

"But they don't want the legal system to work more efficently otherwise many of their lawyer friends would be out of a job, and thats not going down well at the next wine party."

I take your point, but, to be fair, the kind of lawyers who do Magistrates' Courts work, and who would be affected if those courts actually worked properly, are unlikely to be the kind of lawyers who go to wine parties. They're usually either very junior barristers, or solicitors at legal aid firms. They don't tend to earn a great deal.

The wine party lawyers are more likely to be senior barristers doing human rights work, funded by grossly excessive legal aid payouts. Cherie Blair would be a prime example. Making the Magistrates' Courts more efficient would not harm her at all. To deal with her ilk, we need to reform the legal aid system, so that it is much more difficult to get access to legal aid. At present, when Muslims can get legal aid to sue their daughter's school for making her wear school uniform, access to legal aid is clearly too easy.

I think that the problems at the lower end of the legal system can be attributed not so much to a deliberate attempt to provide work for lawyers, but simply to the stupidity of liberal magistrates, abetted by foolish directions from senior figures in the legal system.

Anonymous said...


"Young people apparently need encouragment to masturbate."

This demographic crisis could be worse than we think....