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Saturday, 2 December 2017

Another grubby episode; why the police need an officer corps

If there's one word I've found that adequately describes many policemen above the rank of sergeant, it's 'chippy'. Perhaps from being laughed at, excluded from the gang, having odd parents or being academically slow at school, perhaps from resentment of authority, perhaps from an early realisation that they are deeply ordinary, I'm convinced that many (though not all) of those that seek promotion in the police do so from having a chip on their shoulder that they feel having the powers of a constable plus rank will avenge.

And sometimes there are no better examples of innate inability than those who rise to higher command rank. Assistant Commissioner Bob Quick always struck me as such, a blundering idiot promoted above his ability but ingrained with a deep sense of entitlement and grievance. Chippy. And not only chippy but possessed of that particularly stupid stubbornness that convinces policemen of someone's guilt or innocence in the face of a mountain of contradictory evidence. He could not even accept his own dismissal for endangering the public by screwing up an anti-terrorist operation out of sheer stupidity. Last week he persuaded another deeply flawed individual, an ex-detective with evidence of questionable probity to put the boot into Damien Green.  

One of the reasons in the age of the internet that we put men into large open plan offices is to stop them looking at porn. Every large workplace has its tales of managers caught in acts of onanism in little cubby-hole offices. Damien Green may have been amongst them. I don't know. But whatever breaches of Commons policy he may have committed, he did not act against the law. Quick and his weird little chum, in making their grubby claims, unsupported by evidence, have breached every professional standard that the police should maintain, and have undermined public trust in their old employer.

This really is just the latest a long series of incidents of malfeasance, error, blunder and sheer stupid malice that have condemned the whole class of those who rise to command rank in the police. David Duckenfield, Norman Bettison and others are still to stand trial for Hillsborough so I cannot comment other than to mention the fact. 

Is it not high time that we stopped deeply unsuitable individuals such as Mr Quick from reaching rank to which they are unsuited in the first place? Is it not time the police had a professional officer corps, as it had in the past, to lend it professional integrity where it is needed most, amongst the leaders and commanders?    


Edward Spalton said...

Of course, this is a matter of perception rather than observation of fact but I have a feeling that standards slipped after policemen were allowed to rise through the ranks to become Chief Constables. Prior to that ( and as portrayed in the works of Agatha Christie) they were usually ex military men who understood discipline and certainly felt no need for degrees in sociology or criminology. Additionally, until the late Sixties, many policemen had joined the force after military service, which must have affected ethos and hierarchy.

I will give one instance from circa 1968 of how this affected people's response to the police. There was a technical farmers' conference, held in a West Country county. Many of those attending were residents in the hotel, others were day delegates. The licensing laws then did not permit non residents to drink after hours- but some did.

The conference organiser asked that this should stop - particularly because one of the organisation's members was the Deputy Chief Constable of the county, in charge of Special Constabulary ( volunteer, part-time policemen). Naturally for those days, he was a retired colonel! The fear was that a local Bobby might check up on suspicious late night carousing and cause him some embarrassment.

I had two Dutch guests with me. They were very puzzled by our strange licensing laws but even more puzzled about the Deputy Chief Constable. Surely the presence of such a senior officer would guarantee that nothing of the sort could happen?
I just offer that as an insight into the difference between the way things then worked here and on the continent.

We now have something to which the BBC refers as " The Police Chiefs' National Council" . We have heard less of ACPO, the Association of Chief Police Officers . The titles of both make me feel uneasy. Sir Robert Peel envisaged the police as local forces and that policemen would not become an authoritarian, centrally managed caste - as has now happened in Scotland. At present several very senior officers there are under investigation for various alleged malpractices.

Matt said...

Plod is a joke these days. Don't bother investigating the crimes like robbery/burglary that most people experience.

Easier for the lower ranks to sit in the car/station eating doughnuts and the upper (politicised) ranks to lobby MPs/parliament to get more powers they can use from their desk.

miker22 said...

I recommend Hillsborough Untold by Sir Norman Bettison, it's very readable and makes a persuasive case.

Anonymous said...

I can see that this post will soon turn into a hate-fest against the police. The "doughnut" jibe has already appeared early doors and I'm now waiting for the "gold-plated pension" quote to appear.
Most of what you have written regarding the buffoons that run the police is correct. It's not the fault of the officers on the ground-floor (like me) so save your spite for our superiors.

However you are completely wrong about an officer corp improving things. It won't work.

Anonymous said...

What happened to the police? Leading beyond authority is what happened. One example is the government's long standing multi cult agenda. They have to enforce it, because it's not natural: humans cleave to their own far more than they don't. Whites are the target because they are the majority (for now) so the project needs laws (hate crimes) and laws have to be enforced.

Homogenous societies don't need any of this and that's why the police have changed, because the social engineers decided to alter our society. It's not rocket science, it's common purpose.


Anonymous said...

I first experienced collusion between coppers in order to ensure a conviction when no crime had been committed some 50 years ago, and several experiences since have taught me that things have not got better since.

rapscallion said...

Anonymous on 2 December at 12:48

I couldn't really care whether the Police have doughnuts or not. What I do care about is their perceived inability to deal with the basics of crime prevention and prosecution. It rankles that police spend an inordinate amount of time on stupidities like "hate crime" for God's sake rather than investigate burgleries, assault, or robbery. There was a case of it yesterday where a man set about a thief with a hammer, who was in the process of stealing his car. Guess who the police arrested? Yup, the car owner. Excessive force applied by aforesaid car owner apparently. Really?, and you wonder why the general public regard our Police so lowly.

English Pensioner said...

Police are subject to the Official Secrets Act.
When I retired from the aviation industry it was made clear that my obligations under the Act still remained and that nothing that I had learnt in the course of my job should be revealed to a third party.
I believe this ex-policeman should be prosecuted as well as the BBC for aiding and abetting.

Anonymous said...

I rest my case:

Britain's Hate Speech Police


John M said...

It really is very sad to see bitter and vendetta laden men like Quick and Lewis able to behave in such marginal ways after they have 'retired' (or was that 'forced to leave') the Police Force.

In thier pursuit of what are clearly personal or political agendae they are now bringing the Police into disrepute with them (albeit settling scores with the Force might be an objective as well).

The Police should carry out thier internal investigation with all the vigour they seem to reserve for lesser mortals and bring charges against both if warranted. Equally one would hope that if Green is as innocent as he says he is, that private prosecutions for malicious slander should be laid within days rather than months.

Dave_G said...

Steve @ 1442 has it right.

Unless you're prepared to accept the establishment silver and promote diversity, equality and the globalist agenda your chances of promotion are zilch. Common sense goes out the window, agenda takes over and society goes to hell in a hand cart as a result.

There'll be no gradual change BACK, only an ever-forward march to slavery - else there is a sudden and drastic fight back by a disgruntled public.

Gordon the Fence Post Tortoise said...

They aren't all toxic self serving dullards

HM Chief Inspector of Constabulary

That said - the two goons that perpetrated this should be hung out to dry in the wind pour encourager les autres.

I'm left wondering if there's more coming down the chute - attacking effective ministers? (was he effective? - I don't in truth know)

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry to disagree Gordon but Tom Winsor is a complete fool put in position by the government to destroy the police force to give them an excuse to privatise a lot of things we do.

Gordon the Fence Post Tortoise said...


thanks - fool he maybe - one who seems in this particular instance to be able to figure out that what happened in this matter was wrong and seemingly distance himself from it...?

That said - words are cheap and it's not a fat lot of good if some quango opines on a matter but lacks the will or teeth to actually do something about it.

I see that in 2009 HMIC as it was then swerved a FoI about Leading Beyond Authority... (Common Purpose)

Do you (as a police officer?) think the Common Purpose angle is overblown / tin foil hattery or is there substance to claims that some external tinkering is happening?

Gordon the Fence Post Tortoise said...

Wandering a bit OT

The Common Purpose FoI thing is intriguing as executive branches of UK government fiercely resisting any actual scrutiny and stonewalling on thin statutory ice (That £600 isn't as I understand it on a stone tablet).

I say this as the author of one of at least half a dozen FoIs to DECC as was -
about the employment of people Greenpeace / Friends of The Earth / WWF or other environmental activist NGOs that were repeatedly ducked - to the extent that one was forced to assume that the resistance to disclosure was an indicator that DECC's integrity was tainted by the employment of zealots in the public policy decision making process at a high level. .

Gordon the Fence Post Tortoise said...

This isn't going to do much for the police force's reputation in some quarters....