We live in a world where nothing is free anymore.
I’ve known this for a while – it wasn’t like this in the early 90’s. I remember getting my first car, going to France on a day trip with some mates and drinking beer in a park in Calais. I remember when it was possible to speak about what you wanted and providing you weren’t offensive, you need not be worried that someone might misunderstand you and come over all politically correct on you.
Now we’re all shackled by the way that the world expects us to think.
There’s a church in the UK that has a hand wound clock in the tower. Its been wound by hand since 1760 or something, but the trouble is, its up an 8 foot ladder and Health and Safety has decided that its unsafe and forbids anyone from winding the clock anymore. in 200+ years, noone has fallen off and hurt themselves. But no, risk must be eliminated from our society at all costs.
Its the same here in Oz. Its illegal to cycle without a helmet. Its probably more illegal to do this than commit an act of vandalism. Police are relentless in the pursuit of the middle classes doing something a tiny bit “naughty” Get caught with your hair out on a bike, it’ll cost you 6 points on your driving license and $1000 fine. Thats more than if you drove at 130kph through the middle of Perth.
Its illegal to do most things in Oz – its a very repressive and over regulated society. Have to be seen to be doing the right thing, regardless of whether or not its actually right. In this Health and Safety world, everything has to be *someones* fault, so the powers that be, so spineless and afraid, limp and wanting to cover their own arses want to take away all the risk, just in case someone points a finger at them when something happens and says “Its *your* fault.
Can’t wait for the day when someone stands up to the powers that be and says
“Fuck off, I’m going to just climb the fucking ladder and wind the damn clock and then I’m cycling home without a helmet”
All is not lost mate…I was in Barcelona last year helping out on a training course. On the last day we had a team outing and it was spending the day sailing from the Barcelona Yacht Club. When we turned up I expected (as I’m sure would happen in England) to have to sign forms, waivers, insurance etc etc and then to have a 2 hour safety briefing. Anyway, we had nothing of the sort!! We got on the yachts and sailed away. At no point did the captains ask if we could swim, or tell us to put on life jackets. I think their attitude was that if you are stupid anough to get on a boat and fall in the water when you cannot swim then it’s your own fault. It was bloody fantastic. I remember thinking, as we tilted ever more over, ‘what have i got in my pockets?’ because that was the only thing that bothered me. At one point I gave myself a lovely friction burn hanging on to a rope and you know what? I wont do that again!
If only we could bring this type of personal responsibility back to our societies.
God bless the Spanish. They may just save the world! Us Brits, of course, would ruin the Inquisition
“Death by red hot poker, only be careful to wear gloves and suitable eyewear as it’ll be a bit hot. Oh, and you have to wear a hi-vis jacket if transporting the poker between torture areas. Health and Safety would prefer it if the poker was only warm and not sharp as you could have someones eye out”
They’d have to do a Risk Assessment before undertaking any kind of torture using a potentially dangerous piece of equipment….I can feel a sketch coming on….