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Last post Author Topic: UK Riots: Have you been affected?  (Read 12771 times)

Carol Haynes

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #25 on: August 11, 2011, 07:51:14 PM »
History repeats itself (no surprise there, humans are pretty dumb after all), this article sums things up quite well: http://neweconomics....1780s-all-over-again

Talk about rebels without a cause.

That article is a pretty good starting point for discussion - yes there is outright criminality in what has been going on but the political assessment that that is all that is going on is so far from the mark that it just shows how far from reality they live.

In the inner cities we are now into the third generation of young people in my life time where getting a job is about as remote as getting married after the age of 70 - when you have systemic unemployment through multiple generations in a family and all hope removed is it any wonder that kids feel disenfranchised and behave like animals? It is precisely how they are treated.

I think we are only seeing the tip of the problem in the current riots - in coming months I think the sense of isolation and detachment from the political process is going to spread through the poor communities but also into 'middle England'. Once the current cuts start to bite and Thatcherite unemployment starts to be the norm, interest rates rise and people can't pay their mortgage or rent and the housing market drops back into negative equity (as it did in the 80s) the government is going to have real trouble. Add to that rising inflation, the destruction of pension scheme, the decimation of the welfare state and I think we are in for a rough time and as usual it will be poorer communities that will see the worst of the violence and upheaval.

My only consolation for the future is that I haven't brought children into the world - the future is exceedingly bleak.

A further response to 40hz - the UK is in a really bad state at the moment, but in the next few years US debts are going to start to come home to roost and once the US government faces the fact that the current level of debt is completely unsustainable the US economy is going to cause even bigger problems across the globe than it has in the wake of the sub-prime mortgage disaster and current banking crisis. The US banking crisis has been the catalyst to push at least four European companies over the edge - before the economic systems reset worldwide I can see a lot of countries going down the toilet - the one facing the biggest problem being the US. I dread to think what will happen when the rich in the US take their money and run leaving huge debts and no way to pay them!

In the UK we already have businesses threatening to take the cash and run - not least this week Barclays Bank - simply because they want to sustain the totally obscene way they do business. I actually bank with Barclays but who do you switch to? All the banks in the UK are now multinationals whose only concern is profit - they have no interest in the customers or the economy except in as much as it affects the bottom line.

Its all too depressing, and there really doesn't seem to be anything other than flames at the end of the tunnel.

"There is no such thing as society"
"Unemployment is a price worth paying"
both quotes from Margaret Thatcher

The Tories have learned nothing since - and the Labour and Liberal Democrat Parties have, in the main, joined the Tories. How will anything ever be fixed?
« Last Edit: August 11, 2011, 07:58:48 PM by Carol Haynes »

steeladept

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #26 on: August 11, 2011, 08:38:49 PM »
I actually bank with Barclays but who do you switch to?
I agree with a lot of what Carol stated here, except for the political hackery - though they are all thugs, I don't agree with the fact that it is one party that pushed it all and the others joined the party.  If that were the case, then there would be a real opposition party.  No, my take is it is two side of the same crooked coin - both pulling away from each other and taking as much from you as they can in the process.

As to this statement, however, you switch to you.  You store your wealth in precious metals (coins are easiest), especially gold and silver as they are the most common and hence most exchangeable.  You exchange it at spot rate (or as near as possible) for the money to pay for goods where vendors don't accept the metals and use it in place of money in as many places as you can (outside the current paper scam they call currency). When you make money, via normal paper currency, you exchange as much as reasonably possible into these metals and, ideally, store them yourself in a safe place, outside the banking system entirely (and ideally outside the government's reach).  That is the only real move you can make away from banking institutions these days.  Sure they sell the gold (et. al.), but if they want paper money - let them have it.  The governments are going to inflate the value away anyway.  Gold is the only monetary standard that has never deflated or inflated.  It is essentially worth the same today as it was in Roman times over 2000 years ago.

Renegade

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #27 on: August 11, 2011, 09:29:20 PM »
There's a good amount of rhetoric coming out of the UK gov't now.

One of the things I've heard is about "taking action" over social media... Yeah. That's a good idea. Let's add censorship to the list of tools government has to work with.

If these things go through, they will spill onto the world stage as well. Other countries will follow suit.

Not. Good.
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Renegade

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #28 on: August 11, 2011, 10:16:24 PM »
Hmmm...

Maybe censorship has an adversary:

http://www.vancouver...tory.html?id=5242521

Quote
Researchers from the University of Waterloo and University of Michigan say they have developed technology that could make it "virtually impossible" for oppressive governments to censor specific websites in their countries.

I take it that they mean countries like the UK when they say "oppressive governments". :P
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Renegade

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #29 on: August 11, 2011, 10:22:39 PM »
More on that topic:

http://edition.cnn.c...a/index.html?npt=NP1

Quote
Open-Web and free-speech advocates immediately objected to Cameron's language.

"It may be tempting to smother that kind of speech when a government feels it is under siege, as Britain seems to feel that it is," wrote Matthew Ingram of tech blog GigaOm. "But doing this represents nothing less than an attack on the entire concept of freedom of speech, and that has some frightening consequences for any democracy."
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nathalieR

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #30 on: August 12, 2011, 12:24:37 AM »
I am affected to this riot, though I am not a European or a British still I am a teen age who are really disappointed to my co teenager doing this.  >:(
Riots have been breaking out in London, coordinated mostly through the use of social networking. Scotland Yard is cautioning people to cease such activities or deal with the outcomes. Scotland Yard and all of London are being cautious after deep unrest from the murder of an assumed offender by a Scotland Yard officer has boiled over into rioting and looting. I read this here: Weekend of London riots leaves city devastated by looting

iphigenie

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #31 on: August 12, 2011, 01:36:53 AM »
And the "right" of US police forces to "respond with deadly force" has long been sanctioned, both by custom, and and by law. So the police already have the tools and the authority.

True but in a way the NRA have forced that situation as the criminals will also be armed (potentially with assault weapons)! In the UK a tiny minority of criminals are armed - partly from legislation and partly because the police don't instantly react with deadly force so the need for weapons isn't as clearly perceived.

Deadly force is not the point here - the penalty for breaking into a shop and stealing a TV should in no way ever be shot-to-death-without-trial. These are not hardened criminals or terrorists... These are people, many with no criminal background, who get caught in the exhilarating whirlwind of a mob rush. Happened throughout history - and actually when you compare it to mob madnesses of the past, we are clearly more mature and enlightened. But one of the main reason human rights and legal practice gets "in the way" is that many of the arrested people have no prior record. And they are of much wider age groups than the label "looting kids" image...

Mobs slowly whip themselves up into lynching people, storming castles, or any other crazy thing (good and bad) - anyone who ends up part of a mob event, whether is it a flash mob, demonstration, special event etc. knows a taste of the feeling - of being connected, of mattering - and in a mob madness setting, the feedback loop goes off the scale...

Not excusing them, just saying it is not "anarchists that hate everything versus law abiding citizens" or "immoral kids versus our society" - it's 11 year old good kid, retired teacher, unemployed life guard... Let's not shoot them dead or tun them over with the car (as happened to 3 asian youth who were looking to take on the looters, probably ran into by a car/van who assumed they were looters and was not going to stop to risk having their stuff taken from them)

The cure could well end up being worse than the disease, knowing the UK - I'm welltired of the simplistic explanations and simplistics solutions we're bombarded with, often a version of "give up more rights so we can punish this imaginary image of the looter based more on TV baddies than reality..."
« Last Edit: August 12, 2011, 02:46:49 AM by iphigenie »

Carol Haynes

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #32 on: August 12, 2011, 04:10:01 AM »
I don't agree with the fact that it is one party that pushed it all and the others joined the party.  If that were the case, then there would be a real opposition party.  No, my take is it is two side of the same crooked coin - both pulling away from each other and taking as much from you as they can in the process.

I didn't express that well - what I meant to say is that all the main parties have now joined the right wing adgenda. The Liberal Democrats are now indistinguishable from the Tories (and the one positive thing is that Nick Clegg and his cronyism has effectively killed all future support form the LibDems for the next generation).New Labour is effectively a right wing party as evidenced by the private school mentality of the leaders - and I have always maintained that Tony Blair was actually a Tory who defected when he saw the chance to become Prime Minister (even his own son in law, a long term labour activist, couldn't abide his politics).

One of the things I've heard is about "taking action" over social media... Yeah. That's a good idea. Let's add censorship to the list of tools government has to work with.

I rather think that behind closed doors that doesn't mean censorship (though if probably does for public consumption). More likely the Tories want a back door into people's private conversations - 'intelligence' is far more valuable than 'censorship'.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2011, 04:13:19 AM by Carol Haynes »

joiwind

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #33 on: August 12, 2011, 05:46:46 AM »
@Carole : I entirely agree with your analysis.
I was born and brought up near Lewisham (South East London) and knew well that area, also Brixton as well as the other areas affected such as Hackney and Tottenham.

When I hear politicians talk about "mindless criminality" it just makes me sick. Do they have any idea of what it's like to live, or spend one's whole life, in these or similar areas ?
Criminality for sure,but not mindless, criminality has causes, it is not causeless.
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Renegade

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #34 on: August 12, 2011, 05:51:03 AM »
Criminality for sure,but not mindless, criminality has causes, it is not causeless.

+10!

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Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

40hz

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #35 on: August 12, 2011, 09:18:06 AM »
Unfortunately, anytime population begins to significantly outstrip the available 'real' jobs you're going to have this happen. Look at any history book. Or just do the math.

A real problem is that many of the 'cures' that have been tried over the years ("get tough" laws, eugenic legislation, "make-work", deporation to colonial penal colonies, totalitarianism, euthanasia, ethnic cleansing, slavery, genocide, war) are worse than the problem they try to cure. Tough talk, in the absence of dialog, doesn't work. Because if you push people hard enough, sooner or later they're going to start pushing back even harder

The time has come for some radically brilliant thinking.

So...are any radical thinkers out there feeling particularly brilliant today?

Because this world could sure use some of that right now.  8)



« Last Edit: August 12, 2011, 09:31:07 AM by 40hz »

tomos

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #36 on: August 12, 2011, 09:58:18 AM »
more interesting thoughts from that blog, some along the lines of much here
http://neweconomics.tumblr.com/post/8782344975/why-politicians-dont-get-the-riots

Quote
No, it is not about people who are so poor they are hungry [...]
it is not about leniency [...]
it isn’t about the cuts [...]
it isn’t about ‘broken Britain’ [...]
Tom

Carol Haynes

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #37 on: August 12, 2011, 09:59:15 AM »
You want radical thinking ..

1) Stop the wholescale move of manufacturing to other countries - many young people are not really suited to 'service industries' and will remain unemployable until something is available that they can do.
2) Reintroduce real apprenticeships for real careers.
3) Make school more relevant - at the moment the UK has a one-size fits all approach and that is academic achievement. Bring back real vocational education.
4) I don't believe immigration is the root cause but stop the influx of foreign works that do the jobs no one else wants and get unemployed young people some work experience.
5) Stop encouraging people to do pointless degrees and leaving massive debts just to massage the unemployment figures - a huge proportion of the students drop out and anoth large proportion leave university with a pointless piece of paper and no job (or prospect of one).

I was recently watching a brilliant film about the steel industry on Teesside - one of the telling comments from a working man was the apprenticeship taught young boys and adolescents how to be men with values ... without a goal in life how can we possibly expect the sink estates in depressed cities (and London is one of them despite Buckinghma Palace and the Houses of Parliament) to generate committed and enthusiastic members of society?

nudone

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #38 on: August 12, 2011, 11:02:47 AM »
I think we all know the answer but don't want to say it. It's called "Carousel". (hint: from Logan's Run.) Oh, you may think it's a bit radical, maybe a little extreme. But we'll all be begging for it to a be a reality by the middle of this century.  :)

40hz

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #39 on: August 12, 2011, 11:54:56 AM »
It's called "Carousel".

There are worse ways to go. Especially if they threw in the part about Jessica 6 (as played by Jenny Agutter) making herself available "on the circuit."

 JAgutter.jpgUK Riots: Have you been affected?

Well...yes...quite!  ;)


joiwind

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #40 on: August 12, 2011, 12:18:36 PM »
Two "radical" (if not new) views : back to Keynesian economics and the gold standard ...   :o

A quote from Keynes : "Speculators may do no harm as bubbles on a steady stream of enterprise. But the situation is serious when enterprise becomes the bubble on a whirlpool of speculation.
    The introduction of a substantial government transfer tax on all transactions might prove the most serviceable reform available, with a view to mitigating the predominance of speculation over enterprise in the United States."

After all, it's all down to money - isn't it ...?
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« Last Edit: August 12, 2011, 12:56:16 PM by joiwind »

rjbull

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #41 on: August 12, 2011, 03:16:21 PM »
1780's?  Newbies.  Try reading Summer of blood: The peasants' revolt of 1381 by Dan Jones.

Sounds like an interesting read :)

Well, well.  I was going to try and draw a few parallels, but the author himself has done it for me  :o


Interesting remarks on the constancy down the centuries of the nature of grievance-inspired riots and how they devolve into anarchic violent robbery.

I haven't liked the riots, but also dislike the spectacle of MPs lining up to condemn them.  It looks too much like the rich and powerful looking after themselves.  The basic salary for entry-level back-bench lobby-fodder (who "always vote at their party's call, and never think of thinking for themselves at all") is £65,000, which is well into the fat-cat zone, plus the most feather-bedded pension scheme in Britain.  They've been happy to cut everything and put thousands, perhaps millions, out of work, but haven't reduced what they pay themselves out of our pockets by one iota.  And as soon as Cameron came to power on a "cut everything to balance the budget" ticket, he started a new war front in Libya before we're even shot of the old one in Afghanistan.

Government - make jobs, not war...
« Last Edit: August 12, 2011, 03:30:47 PM by rjbull »

IainB

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #42 on: August 12, 2011, 04:30:55 PM »
@rjbull: Thanks for the link to Dan Jones' comment on the historical relevance of "The peasants' revolt of 1381".
Very interesting, and a timely reminder that nothing changes and history repeats. We apparently cannot suppress or control our susceptibility to our basic natures. Despite all the technological trimmings we surround ourselves with, the thin veneer of civilisation is still just that - a thin veneer. Tear it off, and it's not a very pretty sight. The police must see the stark reality of that in their work on a daily basis, and they are susceptible to it too - and yet we somehow expect them to be saints and not revert to type - we are so shocked when the police beat someone up.
The London politicians, on the other hand, appear to be able to revert to type at the drop of a hat, without a qualm.

joiwind

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #43 on: August 12, 2011, 04:41:17 PM »
...the thin veneer of civilisation is still just that - a thin veneer. Tear it off, and it's not a very pretty sight.

Can't remember where I heard or saw this (maybe on DC ?) but one day someone asked Ghandi what he thought of western civilization and he replied : "I think it would be a good idea".
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Carol Haynes

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #44 on: August 12, 2011, 06:03:56 PM »
Here is another (and surprising) quote from Ghandi:

Quote
It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of nonviolence to cover impotence.

and some more:

Quote
I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.

Quote
You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.

Quote
An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2011, 06:08:25 PM by Carol Haynes »

rjbull

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #45 on: August 14, 2011, 10:28:24 AM »
@rjbull: Thanks for the link to Dan Jones' comment on the historical relevance of "The peasants' revolt of 1381".  [...]
Despite all the technological trimmings we surround ourselves with, the thin veneer of civilisation is still just that - a thin veneer. Tear it off, and it's not a very pretty sight.
I just remembered Lord of the Flies, a famous fictional account of that very thing.

I thought Dan Jones' remark about "disenfranchised young people who have never known discipline" was telling: kids failed both by their parents and by the rich and powerful who run the UK.

tomos

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #46 on: August 14, 2011, 02:18:28 PM »
I dont know. I find the idea dubious that without "civilisation", we'd be a bunch of savages. It is prevalent in all "modern" societies & religions that I know of. But that doesnt convince me. In fact I would suspect that the demonising of our "animal" nature is one our greatest problems as a society. The idea also helps society and religions to convince us that we need their ways of thinking, their morals, their beliefs, in order to be, or become, "civilised" - or whatever :p
The Lord of the Flies is about a group of kids without parental guidance. Not the same thing as our natural state (although I think that's what the author thought as well...)
Tom

iphigenie

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #47 on: August 15, 2011, 04:24:11 PM »
I dont know. I find the idea dubious that without "civilisation", we'd be a bunch of savages. It is prevalent in all "modern" societies & religions that I know of. But that doesnt convince me. In fact I would suspect that the demonising of our "animal" nature is one our greatest problems as a society. The idea also helps society and religions to convince us that we need their ways of thinking, their morals, their beliefs, in order to be, or become, "civilised" - or whatever :p

Science certainly seems to indicate that early man was not a savage - they had long life expectancy and very little violence. Not the kind of wars and fighting that popular fiction seems to have liked to invent (based, probably, on the experience of seeing "primitive" tribes caught under the high societal stress of colonialism and european power wars, and extrapolating from that)...

This was mostly due to there being plenty of everything - food, space, resources - except people. We're kind of in the opposite situation now.

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #48 on: August 15, 2011, 05:42:00 PM »
I dont know. I find the idea dubious that without "civilisation", we'd be a bunch of savages. It is prevalent in all "modern" societies & religions that I know of. But that doesnt convince me. In fact I would suspect that the demonising of our "animal" nature is one our greatest problems as a society. The idea also helps society and religions to convince us that we need their ways of thinking, their morals, their beliefs, in order to be, or become, "civilised" - or whatever :p

Bingo! +100 We should all aspire to be as kind and loyal as our dogs.

IainB

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Re: UK Riots: Have you been affected?
« Reply #49 on: August 15, 2011, 10:14:57 PM »
I dont know. I find the idea dubious that without "civilisation", we'd be a bunch of savages. [...]
Good point. I'd suggest that it all depends on what we mean by "civilisation" or "civilised".
However, it can be shown that even with "civilisation" we are arguably a bunch of savages, though - understandably - we may not be proud to admit to this truth.
For example, what would be your working definitions of these terms - "civilisation" or "civilised"?

rjbull's reference (above) to "The Lord of the Flies" was apt, but that was a fictional work and proves nothing.

Recorded modern and ancient history, on the other hand, can provide us with hard facts to look for proof.
For example, and at random:
  • According to your definitions (from above), was the London rioting and looting and associated criminal activity the action of a civilized people, or was it just "criminal"?
  • Was  "The peasants' revolt of 1381" (referred to above) the action of a civilized people, or was it just "criminal"?
  • Was the "rape of Nanking" by the Japanese the action of a civilized people?
  • How about the use of "comfort women" (sex slaves) by the Japanese during the war?
  • How about the invasion of Kuwait by Iraq, with a deliberate act of war being the raping of the Kuwaiti women by Iraqi soldiers, so as to destabilise the Islamic society there? Was that civilised ("everything's fair in love and war") or "criminal"?
  • And the looting of property in Christchurch, New Zealand, after the earthquakes there - was that civilised or just "criminal"? (The law in NZ judged it to be criminal, by the way.)
  • Was it a civilized act by the US to drop those atom bobs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki?
  • Was it a civilised thing for the Nazi Germans to practice eugenics and experiment on humans?
  • Was it a civilised thing for the Nazi Germans to round up 6 million Jews and murder them in highly efficient death factories, confiscating property and valuables (including gold tooth fillings), incinerate them and even use their body products (ash from the bones to make roading material, rendered body fats to make soap)? (The Nuremberg trials deemed these to be "crimes against humanity", by the way.)
  • Was Winston Churchill's suggestion (in Admiralty) that women in poverty be sterilised a civilised suggestion?
  • Is the directive to exterminate Jews (as mandated in the Koran) a barbaric and uncivilised directive? (Muslim leaders justify it as being the infallible word of Allah, so it is acceptable religious dogma, by the way.)
  • Was the torture and murder of hundreds (or was it thousands?) of people that was conducted by the Spanish Inquisition and carried out in the name of God the action of a civilised people? (It was done under the direction of the Pope/RC church, by the way.)

I would suggest that the majority of the above could be considered as barbaric and uncivilised in the eyes of an alien observing earth. We however, are observing our fellow humans, and may wish to ameliorate such labels to something less offensive - e.g., "legitimate acts of war" for war events, or "the acts of members of society who feel disenfranchised" for the London chav riots, or as many of the Nazis justified their actions by saying "I vas chust followink orders".

For "we" are civilised, are we not? It is always "they" who are uncivilised.