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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Knife crime robberies rise - but pan-2011 figures confusing

AN ANNUAL increase in knifepoint robberies - a rise of nine (9) per cent - has been recorded during 2011 across England and Wales according to statistics from the ONS (Office for National Statistics).

In fact, robberies in the street, as well as muggings, have increased while the statistical data shows a more general fall in all crime.

To be honest, Government statistical data is confusing again as officials have once more changed reporting methods. You wonder, importantly, about accuracy of the figures, and also what value this confusing picture brings to the taxpayer.

The nation's round-up of crime statistics are now published quarterly by the ONS having previously been the responsibility of the Home Office (see the Government's knife, gun + gang-related violence actions here).

This quarterly report, up to December 2011, is littered with news of increases in crime (and some decreases), and the phrase "not statistically significant" is used on occasions.

A link is here to the data for you to consider: National crime statistics to end of 2011.

There is apparently less clear information available as a result of the switch to the ONS - and the statistical data appears less transparent and less helpful to explain crime levels, especially the focus of this blog - knife crime - than previously.

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Super-rich arm the knife carriers when they avoid tax

IT is common for politicians to consider that the presence of wealthy individuals on UK soil is beneficial for the nation where they might create or expand businesses or employment.

However, when they pay little tax - usually by avoidance measures - their morally questionable behaviour (a more critical term might be 'thieves') contribute to the growth of poverty.

More importantly, resentment of such actions by the rich is clearly evident, as demonstrated by the recent British riots. Worse, it is a logical step to then realise that such resentment feeds into and fuels other crime including knife use for violent and other criminal purposes.

Many of the super-rich actually believe it is a duty for them to not pay tax; this is true - they regularly moan about paying any tax. You've probably come across people like them down the pub; you know the neanderthal beer-swilling businessman who tries to come across as an ordinary bloke by saying the taxman is always on his back, the government is taking too much money off them etc.

What is galling is that wealthy individuals are likely to have used state schools and hospitals when growing up - or their employees may still use them. The point is their ability to generate wealth today depends in large part on the stability of the state and an expensive physical  infrastructure... all of which costs money.

So those rich individuals determined to make the least possible contribution to what underpins their ability to enrich themselves is grossly selfish. If they could get off their cushioned backsides and rarefied atmospheres they move in, they would do well to contribute to infrastructural improvements and many of us might have more time for them. Sad to say, very few it seems are known to be in this bracket.

Like Robert Peston, the BBC business editor (as stated in his book 'Who Runs Britain?'), I reckon that no-one should use this club's facilities (the UK) who is not prepared to pay the subscription fees.

When these non-payers wander about our club (nation), they are often taking as much as they can for free... thus they are as parasites, guzzling the financial, physical and intellectual output achieved by the hard work of the many.

And that's not politics - that's common sense. Maybe we do need some kind of global law courts and police-type officers to monitor and prosecute the immorality of these types.

What's worse of course is that the failure of these selfish, wealthy individuals to help invest in the UK infrastructure - or indeed other countries - leads many poorer people to consider crime and some to use knives and other weapons for criminal ends. A little simplistic perhaps (given that people have personal responsibility for their actions) but this is a natural and logical conclusion.

Saturday, April 07, 2012

Stabbing death in run-up to Easter

Another tragic death... a 17-year-old lad was stabbed and killed outside a Hastings pub in East Sussex on Thursday (April 5) -