Tuesday, February 23, 2010

police whistle, security anxiety

We are very conscious of the different approaches to security and policing between Australia and Italy. A look (for the first time) yesterday at the ABC news and we saw another zillion being spent in Australia on security, way way way out there at the end of the world, on the strategic path to Antarctica, as Henry Kissinger once observed.

Here? So simple and smilingly relaxed to get into the country and so pleasant to talk to a police person anywhere.

Today we came from a shop and suddenly there was a whistle that would make a rugby forward wet his pants. Any referee in any football code would envy the quality of the whistle blowing by the lady of the Soriano local police, she of a certain age with long dark hair down below her cap.

She had arrived in a place where there were several small shops and nose-to-kerb pay parking and a van double parked behind the rows in vehicles. Did she come sneaking in the night with electronic pad and whack revenue-gobbles of parking tickets before anyone could react? No, her whistle brings a scurry of ladies to the parking ticket producing machine where the police person goes to assist and gently cajole... while the delivery van man returns to his vehicle and hey presto the van is gone.

The more you blah blah about blah blah the more you tend only to think of the world as made up of blah blah.

The smile, the whistle, the good-natured chiding and 'hey there'; give me those as sensible mechanisms for national security rather than the pompous pouting prating of techno-cold-spirited fear-mongered scare-mindedness.

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