Thursday, July 09, 2009

Legalised extortion

I'm not, by nature, inclined to banning things just because I find them offensive. For instance, even though I occasionally use the odd four letter word in both my postings and my real conversation, it is usually due to genuine exasperation and not for effect or out of habit and I almost always regret it afterwards, but I don't want to see swearing banned. I would prefer it if it was restricted by self-censorship, but I realise I'm in a minority on that sort of thing these days.

But if there is one thing I would ban, it is wheel clamping. I mean - what is the point of it? Cars are clamped when they are parked illegally somewhere - in private or public - and therefore deemed to be causing an obstruction. If they are causing an obstruction then surely the last thing you should want to do is ensure that the vehicle can not be moved?

Wheel clamping has become a charter for legalised extortion where one private individual is able to confiscate the property of another private individual and refuse to release it unless and until that person has paid the other a large sum of money. I don't think that wheel clamping sits comfortably with the traditional rights and freedoms to property of Britons and believe it would be right to ban the practice.

3 comments:

Letters From A Tory said...

Local councils see a flashing dollar sign hanging above clamped cars, just like they do with speed cameras.

Anonymous said...

Extortion is exactly the view a Scottish judge took when asked to make a judgement on clamping a number of years ago, hence the law is different in Scotland.

I doubt such a judgement would be made today though...

As well as being a extortive tax, the other worrying factor is that DVLA will quite happily sell your information to these unregulated thieves.....

Chalcedon said...

It is tantamount to kidnapping you. I think it should be illegal too. Perhaps a course in lock picking is in order.