Vir Cantium

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Looking Back Along Michael Fish’s Family Tree…

… We get to 1900 and Galveston, Texas:

14 years before the storm hit, residents floated the idea of building a sea wall to protect themselves. The city’s chief weatherman pooh-poohed the idea, promising, “It would be impossible for any cyclone to create a storm wave which could materially injure the city.”

Which has given me cause to reflect that anyone under 30-ish probably doesn’t much remember the events of October 1987 and so I will resume advance planning of my mid-life crisis.

(h/t Ambush Predator)


Nice Of The Old Bill To Turn Up, Isn’t It?

It’s odd how the term “Robocop” is popularly used (beyond the films themselves, obviously) to describe some sort of super-human police officer, when with current technology a robot is more likely only to do exactly what it is told to, with little display of initiative or intelligence.

Which is the more appropriate application of the moniker I leave up to you.

In totally unrelated news, I was struck by the statement made by Ch. Supt. Mulligan, Ian Hislop lookalike and commander of Salford’s finest following this week’s incident where an intruder was fatally stabbed by a householder.

“We believe there’s no ongoing threat to the community as a result of this incident”.

Well, that’s a relief. The good people of Salford can go about their business without worrying that householders are going to jump the garden fence and stab them to death in the street, or ruthlessly cut them from ear to ear next time they pop round for a cuppa.

“We attended that incident and then shortly afterwards … we found a 26 year old male who’d suffered a stab wound and who unfortunately [sic] later died at hospital.”

Indeed. It seems the late Mr Bennell was already known to the local constabulary and magistracy, being on bail for another job from a few weeks’ ago.

“…I can reassure the community that there’s a significant police presence in the area”

This made me chuckle. Why would the “community” need reassurance exactly? Or are we talking about the burglar community – sorry ‘burglar’ community? Just how will racking up the uniforms’ overtime this month in any significant way help the investigation, or leave the locals with any impression other than “if they can pull this many lids onto the street today, why not last night?”

At least let us hope that the householder in question didn’t make the mistake of old Tony Martin, who not only as good as announced beforehand that he was going to bag himself a pikey, but also had something of a face for radio, limiting his usefulness as a cause célèbre.

On ‘old school’ retired copper once told me that if we ever found ourselves dishing out some summary justice to a burglar, the important thing was to stay calm and make sure it looked like self defence (which, ahem, of course it would be wouldn’t it *wink*). Then again, old school coppers didn’t have to deal with taxpayer-funded yoomanrights lawyers and weren’t so keen on paperwork and finding reasons to book some extra hours instead of actually catching criminals….