Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Whole Life

A whole life tariff is a terrible, terrible thing.

But the only alternative is the one thing that would be even worse.

Abortion is not an argument for capital punishment. It is an argument against abortion.

The wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya are not an argument for capital punishment. They are an argument against the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya.

The one Western country to retain this horrific practice, putting it in the most thoroughly insalubrious company, is by far the most brutal Western country at home and the most belligerent abroad.

Not unrelatedly, it also has the armed Police that we have never adopted except in the most extreme of circumstances.

The countries on the Continent that arm the Police also did so when they had the death penalty.

They have not become more violent with the abandonment of what is supposedly the ultimate deterrent. In several cases, quite the reverse.


  1. Britain, the most peaceful, free and law-governed civilisation the world has ever known, routinely used capital punishment.

    Back when we had an incredibly low prison population (unimaginably low in today's violent, liberal Britain) and an unarmed police.

    The adoption of routinely-armed police units in Britain was a direct consequence of Roy Jenkins' abolition of capital punishment.
    Roy Jenkins abolished the death penalty and set up Britain's first armed police units, and not by coincidence. Armed crime rose when Britain briefly suspended capital punishment in 1948 and 1956, and then fell immediately when it was reinstated. Since its formal abolition by Jenkins, gun crime has risen ever since.

    You can have execution after trial with due process, or you can have execution by armed police without trial or due process.

    Capital punishment, as you know, barely exists in America. How can you use the non-existence of the post-1960's US death penalty as an argument against its effectiveness?

    It's ineffective in America because it's hardly ever used and thus killers face no realistic prospect of execution.

    Armed crime and murder in the US has exploded since it stopped routinely employing capital punishment in the 1960's.

    meanwhile, death penalty abolitionists say nothing about the 100 prison suicides per year in Britain (many of them lifers) or the 100 people killed by Britain's newly-armed police since we abolished capital punishment.

    Because they don't want to face the truth that we replaced capital punishment with police executions and prison suicides.

    One such police killing sparked the 2011 London riots.

    1. Britain, the most peaceful, free and law-governed civilisation the world has ever known

      Not for huge numbers, possibly the majority, the women. Nor for many, possibly most, working-class men. The Britain of, say, the 1950s was a very violent place indeed.

  2. "The detailed figures show that the number of prison suicides was 100 in the 12 months to March, up from 79 in the previous 12 months" (

    Lifelong imprisonment for murder (or, even worse, releasing murderers to kill again) is so much more humane than capital punishment, right?

    Just like having the police armed ready to kill armed criminals (while occasionally killing the odd innocent) is so much better than having a justice system prepared to kill armed criminals, after a trial with due process, when far fewer innocents would die? Isn't it?

    Like all fashionable liberal ideologies, as soon as you think about the case against capital punishment, it collapses under the weight of its own contradictions.

    1. If you want to know about the causes of the crisis in prisons, then ask the very left-wing trade union, which will tell you.

      Lifelong imprisonment for murder (or, even worse, releasing murderers to kill again) is so much more humane than capital punishment, right?


      I am not sure which country you next paragraph describes. It is certainly not this one.

      The one after that is just boilerplate.

    2. I wondered that, where exactly is this country of armed police shooting up the streets? It's not Britain.

  3. How many of those suicides are lifers? The crisis in prison is due to the cuts in funding and thus in staff. It's been caused by the right as things always are. By Theresa May more than anyone.

    You are so right about the old Britain of misty-eyed sentimentalism. Extremely violent for married women and working men, but the police and the courts didn't care what happened to the first or between the second. Together married women and working men made up most of the population.

    Still, if there's one thing that's definitely never coming back, it is capital punishment. Nobody in favour of it could ever be considered a serious politician in Britain. Even Farage is against it. So it's not all doom and gloom.