08-13-2011, 06:58 AM
Just when you thought they couldn't get any nuttier ... (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/11/opinion/when-budget-cuts-lead-to-broken-windows.html?_r=2&hp)

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">OUR son lives next to a Turkish mosque on Kingsland Road in Hackney, where some of London’s worst mob violence has occurred. When looters rampaged through Hackney last weekend, there were few police officers to stop them and residents had to chase them off with butcher knives, truncheons and baseball bats.<span style='font-size: 11pt'> Vigilante action succeeded where normal policing failed.</span> ...

In attempting to carry out reform, the government appears incompetent; it has lost legitimacy. This has prompted some people living on Kingsland Road to become vigilantes. <span style='font-size: 11pt'>“We have to do things for ourselves,”</span> a 16-year-old in Hackney told The Guardian, convinced that the authorities did not care about, or know how to protect, communities like his. ...

The American right today is obsessed with cutting government spending.<span style='font-size: 14pt'> In many ways, Mr. Cameron’s austerity program is the Tea Party’s dream come true.</span> But Britain is now grappling with the consequences of those cuts, which have led to the neglect and exclusion of many vulnerable, disaffected young people who are acting out violently and irresponsibly — driven by rage rather than an explicit political agenda.

America is in many ways different from Britain, but the two countries today are alike in their extremes of inequality, and in the desire of many politicians to solve economic and social ills by reducing the power of the state.

Britain’s current crisis should cause us to reflect on the fact that a smaller government can actually increase communal fear and diminish our quality of life. Is that a fate America wishes upon itself? </div></div>