One British Police Tweet Shows Us the Future of the Surveillance State

Image by nolifebeforecoffee via Flickr Creative Commons

Just a couple of months ago, this video acquired viral status.


In it, a hooded man leaves a car and administers an ass-whipping to that mindless servant of totalitarianism, the speed camera. I can’t speak for anywhere else, but in DC they are despised. Not because DC residents are in favor of freedom (the city motto is “One party rule for 40 years and counting”), but because the devices are soulless revenue generators that are placed to target those least able to contest the ticket in court.

This anonymous hero was cheered by the population.


Britain is festooned with cameras of all types. There are some 4.2 million CCTV cameras in Britain, about 500,000 of them are in London. This is what happens in Britain when you get pissy with the wrong camera (this is not a parody):

This underscores a great difference between us and the UK…so far. There is a thread of vigilantism that runs deep in America. There is a dash of contrariness that lets most of us sense…at least for now…when government is being unjust and a willingness…in the past…to confront injustice. As Jay Cost noted:


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