Saturday, January 2, 2010

You gotta pick a pocket or two

The government is after more money, so it's going to add a "£15 Victim Tax" to on the spot fines for speeding, using a mobile phone while driving, not wearing a seatbelt, or anyone given a parking ticket. This is supposed to go into a ring fenced area to be used as compensation for victims of crime.

People who commit minor driving offences and antisocial behaviour face paying bigger fines to fund a government scheme for compensating victims of crime.
Since 2007, a £15 surcharge has been added to fines for those convicted of crime, with the cash going to finance support services.
Ministers now want to extend the levy to on-the-spot fines and fixed penalty notices.
This would include motorists caught speeding, using a mobile phone while driving, not wearing a seatbelt, or anyone given a parking ticket, as well as those caught scrawling graffiti or being drunk and disorderly.
Under the plans, the current fine of £60 for speeding would be increased to £75.
In a parliamentary answer just before Christmas, justice minister Claire Ward said: "The victim surcharge was introduced on April 1, 2007 and has been applied initially only to fines imposed in magistrates and Crown courts at a rate of £15.
"We intend to add the surcharge to other disposals as soon as it becomes feasible to do so.
"Proceeds raised from the surcharge provide a ring-fenced source of funding for a wide variety of organisations providing non-financial support to victims and witnesses of crime."
You'll note that these are actually victimless crimes, they may be anti-social, they may be illegal, but they don't actually victimise anyone. So the cash cow that is the UK motorist is being told (not asked) to cough up £15 per fine to pay off the victims of someone else's crimes.
What this is, is just another stealth tax foisted on us by the state because instead of dealing with the actual perpetrators of violent crime and taking them to the cleaners they'd rather go for an easy target to pay for someone else's criminal activity. This is typical of most governments as it's much more easy to get money off the generally more law abiding citizens than it is off criminals. Labour have though turned it into an art form "tough on crime tough on the causes of crime" was their mantra in 1997, of course then we didn't realise that they intended to make us pay through the nose for minor misdemeanour's whilst letting the real criminals off with a slap on the wrist because they can't imprison them nor make them pay for the victims that they caused.

Will it be different under the Tories? I doubt initially that it will, unless they can really reign in the government overspend, even then the tendency of politicians to get their hands on additional sources of income for pet projects means that their hands will still be deep in our pockets no matter the government of the day.

What we really need is a government dedicated to the rights of the individual to live their lives as they see fit without interfering greatly (if at all) in those lives. This means that criminals (real ones who infringe on others liberties) are treat with robustly whilst those of us who are law abiding go about with our daily routine without having to pay for their victims by petty fines and other moneygrubbing activities.

Neither Labour, Conservative or Lib Dem will do this for us, that's why they wont get my vote, all they see is me as a cash cow and that has to end before I'll support them.

2 annotations:

James Higham said...

More form the house of inanity and injustice.

Anonymous said...

Notwithstanding the impressions that the announcements are designed to give, I somehow doubt that the funds available for victims of crime will be increased by the surcharge. They will be used to offset the current tax payers contribution to the fund which is to be spirited off to pay for 'political correctness officers' and 'refuse collection standards' and council newspapers in marginal seats.