Dalrymplecam

The alliance between leniency and authoritarianism

It is a matter of para-detection and para-deterrence, says Dalrymple, who notes that CCTV cameras have no effect on the number of crimes solved.

Common sense suggests that they should deter, but common sense might be wrong. For if the punishment of detected crime is insufficient to deter, there is no reason why the presence of cameras should deter. The CCTV cameras in Britain—perhaps as many as a third of all such cameras in the world—is an official response to the increased lawlessness of the population. But as with so much official activity in Britain, it achieves nothing.

As the official of the Embassy in Conrad’s The Secret Agent put it,

The general leniency of the judicial procedure here, and the utter absence of all repressive measures, are a scandal to Europe.

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