It’s going to be illegal to annoy anybody?

Not often I agree with George Monbiot, writing in the Guardian:

All this is about to get much worse. On Wednesday the Antisocial Behaviour, Crime and Policing Bill reaches its report stage (close to the end of the process) in the House of Lords.

It is remarkable how little fuss has been made about it, and how little we know of what is about to hit us.

The bill would permit injunctions against anyone of 10 or older who “has engaged or threatens to engage in conduct capable of causing nuisance or annoyance to any person”. It would replace asbos with ipnas (injunctions to prevent nuisance and annoyance), which would not only forbid certain forms of behaviour, but also force the recipient to discharge positive obligations. In other words, they can impose a kind of community service order on people who have committed no crime, which could, the law proposes, remain in force for the rest of their lives.

The bill also introduces public space protection orders, which can prevent either everybody or particular kinds of people from doing certain things in certain places. It creates new dispersal powers, which can be used by the police to exclude people from an area (there is no size limit), whether or not they have done anything wrong.

So it’s going to be illegal to annoy anybody? I bet that smoking will be the very first forbidden form of annoying behaviour. And the accompanying community service order will be to attend a smoking cessation course.

The new injunctions and the new dispersal orders create a system in which the authorities can prevent anyone from doing more or less anything. But they won’t be deployed against anyone. Advertisers, who cause plenty of nuisance and annoyance, have nothing to fear; nor do opera lovers hogging the pavements of Covent Garden. Annoyance and nuisance are what young people cause; they are inflicted by oddballs, the underclass, those who dispute the claims of power.

These laws will be used to stamp out plurality and difference, to douse the exuberance of youth, to pursue children for the crime of being young and together in a public place, to help turn this nation into a money-making monoculture, controlled, homogenised, lifeless, strifeless and bland. For a government which represents the old and the rich, that must sound like paradise.

This sounds like a law that can be used against anybody – not just young people – for doing absolutely anything that’s in the least bit annoying.

But it may turn out to be two-edged. After all, I think that I could claim that Tobacco Control measures are all an extremely annoying nuisance, and the people working in it would be better off doing some sort of community service, sweeping streets.

I wonder if pulling silly faces counts as ‘being annoying’? Or laughing or tittering? Or blowing raspberries?

Who cares. These people are beyond crazy, and I never voted for any of them.

Curious video of construction worker moving huge blocks of concrete single-handed:

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18 Responses to It’s going to be illegal to annoy anybody?

  1. harleyrider1978 says:

    Then and Now………..we can see the same game plan played out to the bitter end theres absolutely no difference…………

    Drinking Can Disfigure Your Grandchildren

    The Women’s Christian Temperance Union was all in favor of educating the nation’s youth about the dangers of alcohol well before they tried it for themselves. (More on that in a minute.) One of their lessons included the idea that drinking doesn’t only impact you—the effects can be passed down through your family to future generations. Even your great-great-grandchildren will suffer.

    According to these groups, the offspring of parents who are known to have a drink or two won’t mature into grown men and women. They’ll have their physical growth stunted, and their poisoned life’s blood, tainted with alcohol, will drive them insane. Even inhaling alcoholic fumes was said to then create children who would cry for a drink of alcohol at the sight of anything bottle-shaped.

    Magical Genetics Claim: Maternal smoking causes asthma in ……

    Aug 05, 2013 · Epigenetics is a major new front in junk science. Imagine — smoking irreversibly changes gene expression in existing eggs so as to effect health three …

    Grandmother’s Smoking Linked to Asthma in Grandchild…smoking-linked-to-asthma-in...

    Mar 05, 2013 · Grandmother’s Smoking Linked to Asthma in … It is environmental factors that cause second-generation asthma. … Scientists Discover Second Genetic Code …

    Does it end, of course it does. Its just funny to see these idiots playing the same game 100 years apart. Its like they just dusted off the formula book and recanted a new line with the same claims!

  2. beobrigitte says:

    The bill would permit injunctions against anyone of 10 or older who “has engaged or threatens to engage in conduct capable of causing nuisance or annoyance to any person”.

    Right. I personally would have been a child imprisoned nowadays. Never, ever have had the opportunities I grabbed hold of a good few years later. With me a couple of lads who ended up with a doctorate. And we sure were an annoyance. And we sure in later ears were also the ones that continued to think our own thoughts.

    Kill’em while you can, eh?

  3. Tom says:

    It just reminds me that people, leftists especially, oh so wanted their smoking bans, oh so damn badly as they oh so much believed – now they will get their smoking bans, along with everything else that comes with them – in spades, raining down on top of the very ones who supported, actively or tacitly, smoking bans, in the first place. Full circle. And, serves them right. No pity from me when they cry sufferance. Let the lesson of WWII be re-learned if that’s the only way to expect any sense of liberty and freedom to eventually prevail, only after prolonged trial, death and damnation of some sort, brought on by their own self-imposed ignorance and willingness to shudder their eyes and cover their ears, as they are still doing when it comes to the SHS Fraud and smoking ban jihad.

  4. Walt says:

    That may be the most frightening thing I’ve ever read in my life to the point where I’d like to believe it came from The Onion or was another of Jonathan Swift’s modest proposals or something out of a dark fairy tale about an Evil Kingdom, one in which the Prince (disguised as an Annoying Beggar and carted off to a dungeon) is rescued by the kiss of a buxom and bawdy princess. So if this thing passes, we descend ever lower, from a Tyranny of the Majority to today’s Tyranny of the Vocal, to a Tyranny of the Offended and, even better, to a Tyranny of The One Offended Person. (I am annoyed by all the yelling fans in the stadium and therefore have the power to have all of them not only muzzled but fined. O frabjous day.

    I may have told this story before, but on a flight back from Rome in the late 90;s when smoking was still allowed on foreign carriers, a single zealot who I figured must have purposely bought a seat among the smokers since such were limited and quite hard to get, had declared to the steward that she was seriously asthmatic and bothered by the smoke. She then sat gloating as the steward told all of us– 20 or so people– to stop smoking. Worse, I think the smokers were willing to go along, at least no one said a word, till I stood up and said that I would not stop smoking, that I had, in essence, a contract with Al Italia, that she was clearly a power crazy trouble maker who didn’t have the authority to amend airline policy, and to find her a seat elsewhere. “Oh,” the steward said, and escorted her away. (It later turned out she was a TC plant who’d pulled that trick on other flights too and in fact already HAD a seat in another section, was just trying to enjoy an exercise in malice.) I’m sure the Professionally Offended willl be out in droves if this monster becomes law.

  5. Another case of fixing it when it is not broke.

    “Behaviour likely to cause a breach of the peace” is not good enough any more?

    It does EXACTLY the same. And you have had that since the 1800s when I recall correctly.

  6. XX In England, Wales and Northern Ireland, breach of the peace is descended from the 1361 Justices of the Peace act,[3] which refers to riotous and Barratory behavior that disturbs the peace of the King. More modern authority defines a breach of the peace as existing whether harm is actually done, or is likely to be done, to a person or his property, or a person is in fear of being harmed through an assault, an affray, a riot, an unlawful assembly, or some other form of disturbance.[4]

    The power to arrest for a breach of the Peace is usually used to remove violent, potentially violent or provocative offenders (it is not necessary for the offender himself to be physically involved in any violence) from a scene rapidly.

    In England and Wales, breach of the peace is not an offence, in the sense that it is not punishable either by a fine or imprisonment either at statute or common law and nor do proceedings for breach of the peace give rise to any conviction. In England and Wales, constables (or other persons) are permitted to arrest a person to “prevent a further breach of the peace” which allows for the police or the public to arrest a person before a breach of the peace has occurred. This is permitted when it is reasonable to believe should the person remain, that they would continue with their course of conduct and that a Breach of the Peace would occur.

    The only immediate sanction that can be imposed by a court for breach of the peace is to bind over the offender to keep the peace: that is, justices of the peace can require a person to enter into a recognizance to keep the peace. Any punishment (in the sense of a loss of freedom or permanent financial penalty) takes the form of loss of the surety if the defendant fails to keep the peace or be of good behaviour during the period for which he is bound over. The binding over itself does not amount to a conviction (but any following behaviour causing loss of the surety might well result in conviction for an associated offence). A failure to enter into a recognizance may of itself lead to a person being committed to custody under s.115(3) Magistrates Court Act 1980. XX

    “The only immediate sanction that can be imposed by a court for breach of the peace is to bind over the offender to keep the peace:”

    O.K, so give it teeth. I.e, punishable.

    You do NOT need an entirely new law!

  7. Scotland

    There are major differences between English law and Scots law with respect to dealing with breach of the peace; unlike England and Wales where criminal penalties apply to the behaviour leading to or liable to cause a breach of the peace, it is a specific criminal offence in Scotland which is prosecuted daily in the Sheriff Courts and due to its common law definition it can be applied to a number of scenarios. The maximum punishment if a case is remitted to the High Court remains imprisonment for life although such severe punishment is now rarely applied, usually being associated with breaches of licence during an existing life sentence.

    The Scots Law definition of a breach of the peace is “conduct severe enough to cause alarm to ordinary people and threaten serious disturbance to the community.”

    A constable may arrest any person, without warrant, who commits a breach of the peace. A member of the public may not arrest a person for behaviour which amounts to no more than a breach of the peace (i.e. an arrest is not always for the offence for which someone is eventually prosecuted but can be for a more serious crime that appears to be occurring).

    Breach of the peace can include, but is not limited to, any riotous behaviours (which includes ‘rowdiness’ or ‘brawling’) and any disorderly behaviour. This behaviour doesn’t have to be noisy but still of a nature that would cause concern to other people. Examples include ‘Peeping Tom’-type behaviour, persistently following someone, delivering ‘threatening’ letters and ‘streaking’ or ‘mooning’.

    To prove a Breach of the Peace the most important things to prove is that someone was Alarmed, Annoyed or Disturbed by the incident.

    This offence can take place anywhere i.e. a house, a public street, a private office or any public space.

    One of the leading cases in Scots Law is that of Smith v Donnelly, a case concerning a Faslane protester.

  8. Advertisers, who cause plenty of nuisance and annoyance, have nothing to fear.

    Does this mean that the most annoying people on the planet, those who make unsolicited telephone sales calls, will be free to continue (other than risking the extremely rare fine handed out by the ICO for multiple breaches of making calls to TPS-registered numbers), but if you ask someone in front of you in the cinema to please remove their ten gallon hat, you’ve annoyed them and they can call the police?

    Norman Baker spent a great deal of time investigating the government atrocity of the murder (or aiding and abetting the murderer(s)) of Dr David Kelly because he wouldn’t shut up that there were no WMDs in Iraq and was jeopardising the war which was going to happen anyway –

    The Home Office minister, Norman Baker, once a defender of civil liberties, now the architect of the most oppressive bill pushed through any recent parliament…

    I bet he wanted freedom of information from absolutely everywhere, but now he’s moved onto this petty freedom-threatening legislation. Preachers are already being told to stop by coppers (not just for preaching against the sin of homosexual acts). A Christian couple ‘upset’ a Muslim guest after friendly chats about religion in their own B&B and the CPS decided to prosecute and they lost 80% of their business because the referrals from the nearby NHS hospital ceased. There were the two old soldiers evicted from the last Tory conference for having their say and Walter Wolfgang (an octogenarian) from the Labour conference just for shouting, “Nonsense” at Straw. We already don’t have a say. No Cabinet minister would possibly consider a suggestion from us proles. Rangers and Celtic fans are forbidden from making “sectarian” remarks. Annoying and disgusting as they can be, it’s still eating away at the freedom people have to express themselves.

    It shows how these MPs just do as they are told. Give them a ministerial job and tell them the list of “their” ideas. Same here in Scotland – turning us into a grey, bland, band of compliant drones.

    ipnas ….would not only forbid certain forms of behaviour, but also force the recipient to discharge positive obligations.

    Us bloggers may be expected to spend a month apologising to every control freak, jobsworth, liar, cheat and traitor we have said something which may have upset them should they have read it?

    The whole deal is to stop people communicating. I know you don’t agree with lots of us that the smoking bans are a part of this, but they want to frighten people so we don’t say boo to a goose and next, more internet loss of freedom, when already, you can end up in court for tweeting an obvious joke or calling a politician a rude word.

    Most people don’t seem to care because they don’t have anything meaningful to say anyway. As Tom says, things will have to become insufferably bad for most people to finally do something about it. If it’s even possible in a modern technocratic police state.

    • That reminded me of a piece I wrote on my old website (it annoyed some Labour supporters me having the domain name that Labour should have registered):

      Naughty Five-year-olds to have their DNA taken?

      Senior police forensics expert, Gary Pugh, suggests putting primary school children on the DNA database if they exhibit certain behaviour that might suggest they could become criminals when they are older.

  9. Bill says:

    ‘Peers have handed the government a big defeat in the Lords over plans to make injunctions against being ‘annoying’ legal.

    The upper chamber voted 306-178 against the proposed injunctions to prevent nuisance and annoyance (Ipnas), which would be easier to implement and be defined more broadly than antisocial behaviour orders (Asbos).

    • Frank Davis says:


      But the terrifying thing is that we have a government that was actually trying to make this into law. And that means that they’ll most likely repackage it as some different law, and have another try in 6 months time.

  10. Bill says:

    In other news
    PCSO who pulled over a driver was then arrested HIMSELF for being twice the drink-drive limit by police officers he called for back-up

    You cannot make this shit up.

  11. Mike R says:

    Once again the “unelected” house saves us from evil legislation from the house of fascist drones. But I suspect they won’t accept defeat. If only David Davis had stuck around to be in the home office – instead we have the ghastly old bat totalitarian Theresa. if Cameron is heir to Bliar, May is to Blunkett and Straw.

  12. Bill says:

    Well I want to annoy the warmists so here goes…

    From here

    oceans rule the climate, powered by the sun …
    Posted on January 7, 2014 by Tom Harley,-13.76,2223

    This very useful wind map explains why the oceans run the climate, their influence as shown here is really quite extraordinary. Do warmists still say that a few parts per million of CO2 can affect what’s happening here? Northern Australia has not warmed for 31 years, either.

    Oceans cover 70% of the world’s surface, so a temperature change at the Cocos Islands would be a good gauge of the climate’s state. Cocos Island, no, not changed here over decades.

    Despite this BoM and ‘their’ ABC are pushing for 50C in the Pilbara this week. I’d rather be 50C than 0C or -50C. Feeling sorry for the Northern Hemisphere cold, and the Chinese and Russian sailors left behind in the Antarctic.

  13. Bill says:

    and once more for good measure

    Industrial Wind turbines (IWT’s) have a generic, long standing and apparently intractible problem with gearbox reliability.

    Many gearboxes need a rebuild within 5 -7 years instead of lasting 25 years as designed. Many suffer catastrophic failure within the 5-7 period or even earlier. Depending on the age of the turbine, a gear box failure may effectively write it off. Even when repaired, these gearbox failures are highly expensive and often take out the turbine for months.

    Oh deary me. What will it take for folk to stop being taken in with this warming bollocks?

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