A friend of mine came up to me earlier and said "Don't you think the police are being a bit heavy-handed?"
As a liberal (socially speaking), I seem to find that it's almost seen as my duty to criticise whatever the police do. People just expect me to. And normally, I'm more than willing to oblige. They definitely abuse their stop and search powers, they enforce a lot of laws which are not just, and they seem to spend more time pulling people over for not wearing seatbelts than they do catching rapists and killers.
Having said that, when it comes to these mindless acts of theft and vandalism, I can't criticise a robust approach. The police have a duty to protect people and their property, and that's exactly what they're doing. If they can prevent a shop being smashed up with a baton or a riot shield, it seems worth it to me. If people are willing to attack others and their property, the police are well within their ethical rights to use force to prevent those attacks.
In a free society, this would be an entirely legitimate function of the police force. The police are employed to serve and protect the public and that appears to be what they're doing, at great risk to themselves. I think that Cameron has made the right call in stepping up operations, and I hope that soon these mindless criminals will be brought to justice.
This post will form an introduction to law in a free society, as I would see it. The minimums of law required to run a free society.
Although I often blog about contemporary politics in a mainstream society, I am an anarcho-capitalist and accept that the state may not be the best tool for freedom in a country (the same could be said for democracy, but that's another matter entirely). To this end, I am somewhat of a Constitutional Voluntarist.
Basically, two sets of rights would exist in society: natural rights and contractual rights.
I decided to start my blogging with a bit of a heavy question: 'What is freedom?'
Personally, I determine the freest society as one where each person has the right to do whatever he/she wishes, so long as it doesn't prevent anybody else from doing whatever he/she wishes.
However, even a statement like this can be interpreted in at least two ways: