News, links, analysis and comments on Melbourne's Underworld

Saturday, April 03, 2004

Unusual times call for unusual measures... John Silvester reports.

Knee jerk

Some have called for a royal commission, others for drastic police powers and the nostalgic for a return to the old days when detectives, not gangsters, were said to run Melbourne.

The calls smack of frustration more than common sense. The only people to benefit from a royal commission would be the lawyers, who would be paid a fortune, and sunglass manufacturers, who would provide the latest mafia inspired eye-wear for colourful witnesses. Royal commissions provide headlines and non-admissible testimony.

Those who want to return to the good old days need a reality check. Police have never had a good record in solving underworld murders. When witnesses won't talk, potential victims won't take protection and killers won't stop, then police have a problem.
And there, my dear friends, is the problem. If crims wanna knock other crims, if targets don't want protection, if victims and friends won't talk, then there is sweet FA the police can do.

Sure increased DNA powers might be useful, but I would be VERY wary of giving the police too much power. The cops have shown time and time again (the drug squad esp) that they cannot be trusted when it comes to infiltrating criminal gangs. It just becomes too tempting to join then sometimes:
CORMAN: "Well, you see Willard... In this war, things get confused out there, power, ideals, the old morality, and practical military necessity. Out there with these natives it must be a temptation to be god. Because there's a conflict in every human heart between the rational and the irrational, between good and evil. The good does not always triumph. Sometimes the dark side overcomes what Lincoln called the better angels of our nature. Every man has got a breaking point. You and I have.

So while Steve Bracks has been very keen to try to stop this war- here's the simple fact: unless we become a totalitarian regime, it will continue until it naturally runs out of players or somehow a peace is brokered by the players.

Unusual times call for unusual measures - SpecialsGanglandKillings -

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