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I know, I know... it went too far.

17 people were arrested, stations were closed, the already ho-hum weekend service on the tube was disrupted.

On the other hand, what a party!

Tens of thousands of people came out to drink on the London tube. The occasion being the first act of the new mayor, Boris, which was to ban drinking on the tube. I got caught up on my way home. The first or the last coaches were filled with people. Some were in Black tie. Some were in Rugby shirts, some (after a couple of circuits on the Circle Line) has lost their shirts. Almost all were raucous, loud and cheerful. To a man- or more rarely,woman- it was **** Boris! Even though, I suspect, that a large number of them had voted for him.

So Why, then?

Not because it was about alcohol- though lets face it, the Brits have love/love relationship with the demon drink. Yet I'll wager that very few out last night had ever drunk on the tube before.

The issue is about freedom.

People are sick of being treated as though politicians are teachers and the rest of us are naughty schoolkids. So people smoke- as long as it harms no one else, so what? So people drink? We already have sufficient laws to deal with the drunk and disorderly, as the Police discovered several times last night.

Last night was a cheerful act of rebellion, and if a very small number took it too far, well that is unfortunate. On the other hand, the fact that people are prepared to give a cheerful two fingers to authority makes me feel quite optimistic about the future of this country.

If Boris has any sense, he will repeal this silly law, and then come out on the Circle Line with the rest of us to celebrate - oh, and a bar at Edgware Road station could be a real money spinner.


m said…
Cicero, across the street from Edgware Road Tube is San Miguel's. Fine Spanish restaurant, excellent paella, but good drinking spot. I've spent enough times stuck at Edgware Road to know...
Newmania said…
So people smoke- as long as it harms no one else, so what? So people drink? We already have sufficient laws to deal with the drunk and disorderly, as the Police discovered several times last night.

The Liberal Party have been in the forefront of promoting the no risk agenda and did nothing to help on smoking , hunting or any other real Libertarian issue I can think of. They will soon be clucking about the passive damage drinking does and to suddenly want to be on the side of individual freedom rings very hollow indeed.
In London there is problem of fear in Public spaces and while the Mayor cannot solve it he can set the tone . This fear is real and not imaginary nannying nonsense that has lead to the destruction of the Pub following the busy bodying and loathed smoking bann you supported and Boris would like to ameliorate in London. If you have ever been caught up in a gang of aggressive thugs on tube you would know what I mean and this measure is overwhelmingly supported.
Boris has along record of speaking out about Liberty and paid the price for socalled political incorrectness . Furthermore the fact that a couple of hundred people got drunk and it is front page news if it anything shows the absurdly Metropolitian bias of the media . 10000 marched to protest about the third runway on that weekend and were ignored .

‘On the other hand, the fact that people are prepared to give a cheerful two fingers to authority makes me feel quite optimistic about the future of this country.’
I cannot imagine why when the Liberal party have supported the extension of the state with all the loss of freedom that involves together with the removal of accountable democracy to some unknown European venue and increased taxes throughout the nineties ( Recent Tory stolen clothes to be ignored). I have never met any Liberal capable of sticking two fingers up at Andy Pandy without checking with the appropriate authorities.

Pah , back in your box Cicero.
Cicero said…
Newmania- as usual you listen to your own predjudices and not the argument. Don't you think it is just a bit arrogant to tell people what they beleive rather than listening to what they are saying.
Anonymous said…
I'm sorry, drinking and smoking are different. As a non-smoker, my rights are always infringed by idiots who have a lit cigarette, takes maybe 2 puffs, and just lets them burn. I end up getting more of the bloody smoke than the smoker.

Liberalism is for freedoms -- but it also has to protect the freedoms of the abstainers.

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