Something struck me the other day. I wasn't as unfortunate as that poor sod who took a fatal blow at the G20, as my own suffering was more meta than physical. But here's what it is. I wanna tell ya a story. And all that f'shizzle.
Walking to work the other day (nice weather btw. Only a blown-out inner tube had prevented me from pushing the pedals, and - amazingly - I was passed by a cycling friend as I started my walk up the road. I saw him, but am uncertain as to whether he saw me as he flashed past) I approached Parliament Square and the now-normal gaggle of Tamils cavorting away in the morning sun.
The expected droves of Old Bill were of course standing around, nudging each other, reading texts, pointing at things and grinning, etc. But I noticed that there were crash barriers set up all along Millbank, and as I approached, I could see that there were lots and lots of police officers spaced out at fairly regular intervals down the street. Every ten yards or so there was a group of two or three of them, and parked on every side street as far as Horseferry Road were vans, each one packed to the gills with bored rozzers, leaning back on the windows with their eyes closed, fiddling with their equipment, that sort of thing.
I was amazed that such a force had been deployed, and mystified as to why it had been felt necessary. Of course, it could not be that these pigs were acting on 'intelligence', because that particular flu carrying porcine took wing sometime around the invasion of Iraq. Maybe it was the Tamils? Or the Marathon? But that didn't make any sense either. I arrived at work, and found out that the whole thing was in aid of - wait for it - the Budget!
The fucking Budget. I know times are hard and all that, but for crying out loud! The Budget. It all set me thinking about where these valiant boys in blue come from. And for that matter, where they go back to when the shouting's over. People have said to me:
"Oh, they bring them in from Surrey, Hertfordshire, blah blah blah..."
But it doesn't wash. It must cost a bloody fortune to keep all of these unnumbered thugs in kevlar for the duration of whatever 'kick-off' is going on, and even more to barrack them in times of peace. Sort it out.