Vapid Police Management

There is a report out on our vapid police forces today.  I would hope our average cop will not rush to the conclusion I think he or she is vapid.  It’s more a lions led by donkeys kind of thing.  The best press summary is in the Telegraph at http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/law-and-order/7899007/Just-one-in-ten-police-free-to-fight-crime.html and the full report at http://www.audit-commission.gov.uk/nationalstudies/communitysafety/policevfm/Pages/default.aspx

There are two reports actually, one called ‘Valuing the Police’ and the other ‘Sustaining Value for Money …’ – both obviously bullshit positives.  12% of the central police budget is lost because the pathetic chocolate-dipped strawberry eaters running their own shows can’t get together to buy equipment and the rest.  A load more is lost by keeping overpaid warranted officers in offices doing clerical work.  They can’t organise a piss-up in a brewery, still incapable of making sure officers are available when it’s likely to be busy, and having plenty around in the middle of a quiet Monday night.  The reports are tedious reading, full of donkey-management terms like ‘silo’ and no doubt the ‘desiloisation’ favoured by the woman behind the Baby P fiasco.  I didn’t bother after a few pages.  The story is one of chronic mis-management.  They can’t even count beans.

Part of the methodology of these studies is one I have advocated for many years and practised in business.  We could call this business process analysis.  The best known patent version is Hammer and Champy’s ‘Business Process Re-Engineering’.  I mention this only to point out the bullshit is old and as a marker that any fool can get into the jargon, the basic problem with any management analysis.    You can get the gist of what was found at the Telegraph.  Reading between the lines you will find our police forces being run by vapid jobsworths who can’t even organise buying fleet cars.  My Panda car was a Vauxhall Viva and across the county divide they were Ford Escorts – that kind of thing. Later my sergeant and I (we outweighed the Pontypool front row at the time) were expected to travel in a Mini.  It is not a new story, but one management has failed to deal with for over 35 years.  This suggests very deep wuckfittery is in long-term action.  I think it is time we shot some of the Admirals.

The basic idea of business process analysis is to avoid what Hogday calls ‘the long screw-driver’- trying to tune a moving radio on the ground with a long steel instrument suspended from a helicopter.  Instead, you get in amongst the action and detail what is being done.  This is bloody tedious and not done for fun.  The idea is to find out how many processes it takes to get anything done, with the aim of reducing them and costs.  A ‘success example’ is reducing an accounting department of 400 down to 4 and a few computers that work.  I have no sense of fashion or sartorial elegance and want none.  I would thus buy my sweat-shirts by pre-arranged manufacturer in a sweat-shop in Burnley by the dozen at less than the cost of one in a retailer, but at twice the price the retailer pays to salve my conscience about sweat-shop labour.  The snag, possibly, being the creation of a redundancy pile of retailers.  Techniques involve such matters as Boeing having Internet auctions for tenders to supply their parts.

The idea in policing would be to get officers out and about more visibly, smoting scum and lobbing their unconscious bodies directly into skips for transportation to Devil’s Island, itself a self-administered correction facility.

I was lucky enough a few years back to see what went on in a major criminal enquiry.  The officer running it had ideas on using new technology, but court demands for original statements meant everything was in cardboard boxes.  He referred to ‘quill and pen judges’.  In short, everyone did a great job, but 90% of the effort was wasted.

What’s needed is not police reform – this creates the kind of stupid ‘silo mindset’ the clowns using the term think they can avoid by saying the word over and over.  We need complete reform of the legal system.

One thought experiment here is to get yourself locked up for a minor crime and examine the processes as you travel through the disgusting cells, bail and on through several court adjournments and all the applications for legal aid and the costs  of lawyers, medical and expert evidence and so on.  My ‘guess’ is that we would all find little justice, plenty of crude unfairness, and a money-trail well in excess of 5 times the average wage.  From here, we could up to the case of a couple of recidivist scrotes costing the tax-payer £250K in one year.  We could also imagine (or do by participant observation) living with such bastards and counting up their actual crimes on a daily basis and wonder what alleged crime statistics are about as we discover they commit hundreds of unrecorded crimes the system has no trace of.  This latter might help us understand how a 45% reduction in crime does not translate into what we think or know is going on around us.

Policing itself needs a major adjustment in terms of the response job.  It needs to be made into the job cops want to do, not escape from.  What could be finer than protecting decent people from scrotes and being able to do it effectively instead of fobbing-off all kinds of victims until they die?  There’s a cop on the beat next to ours who is the epitome of what a good officer should be.  Our own beat cop is pretty good too.  Neither will pass the exams (I wish I could transfer my tickets to them) and both are brighter than most I used to sign degree passes for.

One can’t argue in full without massive time.  We clearly need to protect human rights in any changes.  But a real examination of the processes will show our ‘tax dollar’ is not only wasted, but goes to help destroy victims and help the perpetrators and an army of professional slime who live far away from the problems.

This morning’s television news has gobbed-up a chief constable who couldn’t admit responsibility for not making the easy management decisions the report outlines and Louise Casey blathering about victims, also unable to admit she has been a complete failure and promulgated loads of glossy Nulabour distraction from the reality of antisocial crime herself.  These kind of placepeople will say anything, for any master.  No one acts on the basis of integrity and getting back to that would be central to changing the way things get done.  Inspector Gadget is already listing forces that are not trashing the Policing Pledge despite the Home Secretary’s instruction.  We need to shift the bureaucracies that have formed to deal with Nulabour targets, and the only way is out.  The ConDems should resist replacing this kind of managerial garbage; they should destroy it root and branch.

I suspect many who contribute to Gadget and other police blogs could come up with investigation and prosecution processes that would speed convictions and protect anyone falsely accused better than the current system which only ‘works’ on paper.  They would also know how to streamline management and regionalise the police forces whilst leaving us with local constabularies.  Every chief constable, their SMT and PR-statistical lying department has already failed.

9 thoughts on “Vapid Police Management

  1. Pingback: Vapid Police Management « Allcoppedout's Blog « Management Fair

  2. Well, you didn’t mince your words here! How refreshing.
    I hope that the “ConDems”, and the Home Sec take some notice of what you have pointed out so clearly here.

    Talking of wasted time and money, it struck me a long time ago, that the law on cannabis was ridiculous and unjust, as people used it to relax and unwind just like many use the more harmful alcohol.
    I can appreciate that in recent years, with the invention of the hybrid form of cannabis known as skunk, the adverse effects of skunk on a minority of people has hindered the argument for the legalisation of cannabis. And this was despite the support for legalisation from some very high profile police officers in ACPO, and a Royal Commission into drugs also supporting legalisation.

    I believe that the silly argument “gobbed up” against the legalisation of cannabis in particular, is flawed because of a small group of people who are just plain bigoted.
    Skunk may well cause a problem for some, and in Holland the police officers there who use cannabis, were warned to not use skunk in the future, either on or off duty!
    Skunk has been found to have a component missing, that protects AGAINST the development of potential psychosis. The original herbal cannabis has this protective component in its basic genetic structure and does not cause psychosis. Skunk is the potential problem, especially when used with alcohol, by teenagers.

    If the public are allowed by law to brew their own beer and wines at home for personal consumption, but are not allowed to distill alcoholic drinks like whisky or gin, because that can be dangerous to health; the public should be allowed to grow their own cannabis for personal use. People do not normally commit crimes of violence or of an anti social nature when using cannabis.

    I wonder if anyone has done the maths on just how many police hours and resources are wasted on people who use cannabis to relax, or for self medication purposes.
    Legalisation of cannabis could also provide a revenue for the “poor old taxman” and this country’s massive debt!
    It could even solve a problem or two with the resentment felt by some Muslim extremists, caused by the historical USA led “war on drugs” – which will never be won. If the police funding is to be cut, then these are issues which deserve very serious and sensible consideration.

    The prohibition of alcohol has never worked, so why allow a black market in cannabis and lost revenue for the taxman to exist, whilst turning usually law abiding people into criminals. It makes no sense whatsoever.

    As a matter of interest, would someone who had been given a criminal record for cannabis in the 1970’s still have that “crime” record used against them today by police?
    In the past a conviction for a minor “offence” would be wiped off the records after a certain length of time.
    Is this the case in today’s system? Or has it changed?

  3. My understanding is that all offences remain in record. This is silly and spent convictions should be wiped off. Yet there is a need to record intelligence to identify real problem makers and dangers. I suspect we are no good at either end.
    A great deal of police time is wasted on all kinds of stuff most of us regard as none of their business our ours.
    On drugs issues there are serious concerns that governments are involved at high levels in the trade (drugs, oil and war). The unhappiness I have seen connected with drugs and drinking rarely seems to be properly exposed. I can’t believe a ‘letting your hair down’ weekend is really something police should be involved in stopping, and the prohibitions do support the criminal market. We don’t give enough attention to the sadness of it all either,
    For me, any radical overhaul should at least try to base itself on the reasons so many people are reduced to criminality and black markets and producing a society in which dignity is easier.

    We should at least ask why we always seem to hand control to the very people who have failed us.

  4. Thank you for that explanation. It seems a bit harsh that some who fall foul of the law on cannabis, or other minor offences in their younger years, become “criminals” for life. Would a parent hold a grudge for life against a kid who misbehaves in teenage years? I think not, and as the state often acts in a protective and disciplinary role towards its subjects/citizens, it needs to be more reasonable. Condemning people for life for minor breaches of the law, is a bit over the top. Like hanging people for stealing bread because they were starving, which used to happen way back in our U.K history.

    The LibCon/ConDem coalition have an incredible opportunity before them now, to right many wrongs and create a better and fairer system. I hope that they manage to do that for everyone, police and public.

    Regarding “not giving enough attention to the sadness of it all.” This is so true and such an injustice to many who struggle on with burdens of emotional pain and grief which they “manage” with alcohol or drugs to gain some respite from how they feel. Alcohol doesn’t really help that much, from what I have seen in some quite tragic cases over the years. It is well known isn’t it Champ, that many coppers drink quite heavily because of what they have seen and had to deal with? I think it’s also fair to say that the same applies to doctors, nurses and paramedics. I had a look at a blog recently from a link on PC Bloggs, written by “Drugsblogger” which was quite enlightening regarding the severe stress people experience that prompts them to use drugs or alcohol for self medication and a relief from it all – cops included.

    So much suffering and not much gets done to help people.
    But then in the old days, pre NHS, people just “got on with it” and families helped each other pull through the worst of times. Life isn’t perfect and never will be.
    Into each life a little rain must fall, and then we appreciate the warmth of the sunshine when it returns.
    Without sorrow, how would we fully appreciate joy.

    I’m not entirely sure that I do “always hand control to the very people who failed me”, personally, because wherever possible I prefer to be in control of myself and my own life. The country has just voted out the New Labour control freaks and rejected their “control”.

    I think many people are happy to allow strong leader types to take charge of situations that they themselves either don’t wish to, or simply couldn’t deal with.
    Some succeed, and some fail occasionally. That’s life.

  5. I think we were still hanging kids of nine as late as 1850.
    I’m afraid my hopes about ConDem have more or less gone. PMQT is a bad as ever and the Lords have reformed expenses in the typical old ways. The cuts that are coming look very typical of old ways too, but this is happening all over the EU.
    Taxes on many things are now so vast that smuggling is back in force. This extends to cheap tobacco and booze, though drugs and on to seriously large companies.
    We need what you hope for but I don’t see it coming.

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