Police state

Ready to pounceIn Norway you can’t speed or run a light anywhere without getting a ticket. In Norway they have cameras mounted sporadically along the roadways so you have no choice but to drive properly. Even on a country road, even if you’re running late, it makes no sense to break the law and that’s rather stress-averting in itself.

As a result there are no police cars in sight. Thus Norway has order and civility, without law enforcement authorities loitering to catch you.

It’s an interesting trade-off. Big brother -in a bureaucratic sense- instead of beat cops. It reduces the possibility of human error, personality clashes, power trips, graft, or whatever other motive led that officer to a career in law enforcement.

British police officers, Bobbies, are required to wear the funny get-ups to counter the natural impulse a law enforcer might get to act too authoritively. Until recently most Bobbies were not even allowed to carry weapons.

In this country, the policemen’s Ray-bans, other masculine accouterments, and the big gun serve to promote machismo power tripping. Good for them, but not so terribly great for you. In American, even when you are behaving yourself, a person can’t help the reflex of holding their breath when they cross the path of law enforcement officers.

Have you noticed that they’re multiplying? More tickets mean greater revenue for police departments, mean more officers, means a police state.

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Eric Verlo

About Eric Verlo

On sabbatical
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