Street cameras

Discussion in 'Ethics, Morality, & Justice' started by Norsefire, Jul 27, 2008.


Do you support government street security cameras?

  1. Yes, but only for major crime areas

  2. Yes, widespread use

  3. Yes, widespread use + identification and face recognition system

  4. No, no use at all

  1. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member

    you do realise the road toll is something like 4 times the murder rate?
    not to mention the serious injuries on the road.

    i suggest you ride in an ambulance for a shift and see if you still think road safty is a waste of time. The only change i would like in road safty is it to be actual coppers rather than fixed cameras so that the person actually gets pulled over
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  3. vslayer Registered Senior Member

    while using them to catch criminals would be very effective, they could be used to track anyone. the question is, would you trust the government enough to let them monitor you 24/7. how many more of your rights are they going to take away before you stand up for yourself and get on their watchlist? how long before that watchlist becomes a hitlist?

    the more power a government has, the less freedom the people have. 'democracy' means power to the people, not power to the government.

    there is a difference though, you chose to work for an employer, and if you disagree with them you can quit, its much harder to 'quit' a country, especially if you're on an island like me.
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  5. Randwolf Ignorance killed the cat Valued Senior Member

    You know what? The whole premise of this thread is irrelevant. No offense to Norsefire. The fact of the matter is, we are entering an age where it's not "if" you are on government camera, but rather "how often". We are fast approaching 100% in some areas. Oh, well. Society will adapt. I'm just curious as to how, since we obviously can't possibly put all law breakers in jail. There would be more "inside" than "outside" if it weren't for selective enforcement.
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  7. Pandaemoni Valued Senior Member

    I don't disagree with that, and yet I wonder if many people would not be more annoyed by their employer's monitoring them than they would be by the government. I realized after I wrote that, however, that the reason people might be more annoyed could be that they are more likely to be caught "goofing off" while at work (doing dastardly thinks like posting on the SciFi Forums) than they are likely to be caught committing a crime.

    I seem to recall people reacting with outrage at the notion of having a speed monitoring computer chip in their cars (suggested again by the Brits' transportation authority). The theory being that if you go over the speed limit, the chip tells on you and/or kills your ignition. I think the thread was on these forums, though it might have been another.

    I am far more in favor of a chip that monitors my car, than a camera system that monitors me.
  8. lucifers angel same shit, differant day!! Registered Senior Member

    i hate them, its just anouther way for the goverment to watch what we do, see who were with,

    and for all you legal begals out there, even when a crime is caught on camera does nOT mean they will be found guilty, in fact crimes are commited all the time and seen by cameras and nothing is done about it, so why ahve them??

    because then the goverment can say HEY look we're making the country a safer place!! piffle!!
  9. redarmy11 Registered Senior Member

    Nope, it's a terrible point, born out of prejudice rather than consideration of the facts.

    First of all, most CCTV cameras are both live and archival simultaneously, so it's not a useful distinction.

    Secondly, CCTV is a major crime deterrent. Fact. The UK police swear by them. Do they waste their precious time pursuing people for dropping litter? Nope. The camera data is usually accessed in response to serious crime and in response to complaints re. stolen property/criminal damage, etc.

    They're a very valuable resource - but continue pointlessly stressing 'freedom of the individual' and fantasising about an encroaching police state as you gun each other down on the streets, by all means.
  10. Norsefire Salam Shalom Salom Registered Senior Member

    I personally see nothing wrong with a police state if the leaders are just and benevolent.

    And if you're not doing anything wrong, why so self concious? The cameras won't hurt you.
  11. nietzschefan Thread Killer Valued Senior Member

    They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. Ben Franklin
  12. Randwolf Ignorance killed the cat Valued Senior Member

    Nor will they retain either for long. Randwolf.
  13. Norsefire Salam Shalom Salom Registered Senior Member

    You don't give up liberty. You can go about your day and do everything you could already do. It's just monitered.

    Monitered, not controlled
  14. Randwolf Ignorance killed the cat Valued Senior Member


    Monitoring leads to control. Slippery slope.

    Hypothetically, if we could get rid of some of the stupid laws, that don't need to be laws in the first place, maybe. Or, if evidence captured could only be used against, say, murder, rape, assault and robbery. As opposed to selective enforcement of bullshit littering laws, seat belt requirements, drug use, prostitution, jaywalking, speeding (where no accident was involved), cell phone use, open container violations, etc. Ad nauseum.

    I object to the government having all this "proof" of lawbreaking at their instant demand. As has already been said, if the dictator was benevolent, everything would be great. I don't want to rely on, or even investigate, the probability of that occuring.

    I mean, how many people break some law everyday? Should we prosecute them all? We could, and convict, if we had 100% video coverage and A.I. sufficiently advanced to sort it all out. Better start building more jails, quickly.

    If we shouldn't prosecute every breach of law, why do we keep the laws? And, who decides whom is prosecuted? (I know, the prosecutor, in practice, but this is still the government) This is some potentially scary shit people.

    But again, I have already resigned myself to the inevitibility of this happening, and have adopted a "sit back and watch the fireworks" attitude. Good luck, everyone...
  15. lucifers angel same shit, differant day!! Registered Senior Member

    yeah its the "Monitered" that i dislike so much,
  16. phlogistician Banned Banned


    Where do you get your 'facts' from?

    Ah, not from specific government reports. They have cut vehicle crime. Woohoo. Mostly they are used to identify perpetrators after the crime. Not so good.

    We should spend the money on real Police officers on the street instead.
  17. Pronatalist Registered Senior Member

    Of course we know these cameras probably won't serve the public, so why bother with them?

    If we supposedly have to have these spy cameras, an instrument of a totalitarian tyrannical govenment that obviously can't be omnipresent like God can, to spy upon everybody, then why can't the cameras be programmed to actually serve people? Why should Big Brother government be the only ones to watch the cameras? Why can't people look through the cameras, via websites or webcams? Sort of like screensavers? If you live in some big highrise building, with no windows for your individual housing unit, you could "select" your windows as whatever public cameras you like. Real time "outside" activity and traffic. Also, let's not have stupid red light cameras that only send you a ticket months after you have forgotten whatever you were doing, denying the victim any reasonably opportunity to defend themselves in traffic court, or to remember the police officer or other official directing traffic contrary to traffic lights, who didn't know how to deactivate red light cameras. Rather, if we have to have public security cameras, they should be smart enough, to actually immediately summon authorities, in the event of hearing sounds that signify a car crash, gun fire, or panic screams.

    But as usual with anything government does, spending a lot of money on public security cameras would likely be a huge waste. What good are cameras, if they have to cut government staffing waste, and nobody's watching the cameras, or if corrupt government officials spy on the movements of a few selected individuals, while most crime goes on ignored? It would be such a more efficient operation, to post the Ten Commandments in government schools, and on road signs and such. Promote more self-responsibility and goodwill to our fellow man, not the Big Brother police state strangling the economy and everything. When you try to control everything externally, don't people just learn how to evade the countermeasures? Maybe more people would drive around wearing masks, to ellude the face recognition software? Maybe courts would become all the more clogged, as people sue over the Big Brother abuses and violations of their rights? Or as government catches more people, they aren't prepared to effectively prosecute anyway?

    I don't like Big Brother government computer chips that "control" your car. Maybe there is some valid reason for speeding or running red lights? Medical emergency, or wife is about to have that baby. But then some people just seem to be clueless about driving. If I could, I would love to "kill" that car's engine behind be, of the moron who's going faster than me even though they see me ahead of them in my lane, and then they get stuck on my rear tailgating. Put on the flashing hazard lights and slow down, and still they don't seem to realize there's something dreadfully wrong with their driving. I wonder maybe it's getting time, if every airplane has that "black box" (Isn't it orange?) to record what went wrong before some hopefully very unlikely crash, and most every car has its computers now, maybe cars should log activity as well? While such data usually would be the private property of the car's owner, it could be subpenaed by a court trial seeking to prove reckless or other car crash behavior, and also used by parents to "monitor" their child's driving.
  18. Norsefire Salam Shalom Salom Registered Senior Member

    Most of those are crimes for a good reason. Prostitution? Drug use? Please, my good sir, those have very good reasons behind them.

    And speeding has the potential to hurt people. So should we all speed and hope we don't kill someone? Talking on the cellphone makes people more accident prone.

    Why not? You want the judicial system to be less efficient?

    Most crimes won't result in jail time like you are describing. Maybe a ticket or fine, which could be remotely sent. Not prison time.
    The cameras would focus on more violent and significant crime

    Shouldn't? You mean if we can't. We should be trying to improve efficiency.

    They will have very good luck because the police will be able to better protect them

    That's still something. I think we should also get more police officers, especially on the streets, who are well-armed and authorized to use deadly force, but a network of cameras would drastically improve their performance in the intel that it provides.

    Again, there isn't anything wrong with big brother. The government's job is to protect you and regulate society. It's the government, what does it matter if it's watching you?

    You have privacy in your homes.
  19. nietzschefan Thread Killer Valued Senior Member

    I order you to change your AVATAR!
  20. Norsefire Salam Shalom Salom Registered Senior Member

  21. vslayer Registered Senior Member

    and what is that exactly? in the last 24 hours i have broken 11 laws(that i can remember) without harming anybody. if anything most laws(other than those simply ridiculous ones such as drug laws) should be a guideline, not a strict black and white code. if you are to install cameras everywhere though, it removes that aspect of discretion and leniency that any normal person would show should you break a law without doing anything wrong.

    a good example is the speed limit in a nearby town, the limit is legally 50k, but during the day with the amount of people walking haphazardly across the main road you'd be stupid to go above about 30k, whereas at night it is completely abandoned with the exception of the pub and you can safely drive about 80k due to the width and condition of the road. the 50k limit serves only as a guideline.
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2008
  22. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    A whole lot of gun nuts and violent knife-wielders walking the streets?

    No thankyou.
  23. Randwolf Ignorance killed the cat Valued Senior Member

    Of course they have good reasons behind them, just not good enough reasons to 'monitor' the citizens 24/7. In many cases they are victimless crimes.

    You still haven't addressed the practical issues, either. If you could monitor everyone all the time, and you enforced penalties for violations of these 'good' laws, what do you do with the sheer number of offenders?

    Hence the addition of 'where no accident occured'. I think you see the pattern here. You are defending laws designed to curtail freedoms where no harm has actually yet happened. I'm all for holding people responsible for their actions by the state, provided those actions cause direct, defineable harm to others. Not before. Until that happens individuals are capable of being responsible for themselves.

    No. I want it to become more efficient. It can do so, at least in part, by shifting some of the burden of responsibility away from authoritarian government and back to individual morality. Especially in the case of nonviolent, victimless crimes.

    Why? Are you planning on changing existing laws or relaxing penalties in your brave new world?

    Would they? Like, say, murder, rape, assault and robbery?

    Are you assuming unlimited resources? Hypothetically, if we have 10,000 instances of prosecution of a given crime before your cameras are widespread, how are you going to handle the other 90,000 cases discovered with your omniscient monitoring? Better start building more jails, or more courthouses if you prefer. I mean, we can always use more lawyers, right?

    OK. If you say so. Better start hiring more police...

    Oh, I see you already figured out the hiring more police...

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    I do like your emphasis of 'on the streets' though. As opposed to where? Watching the cameras?

    That's a matter of opinion, and I disagree. Vehemently.

    No, it's my job to protect me. Protecting society as a whole and defending the country, maybe.

    Isn't this the whole point of the thread? It's your thread and your question. We're trying to give you our answers and opinions. Have you read them?

    Don't crimes occur in homes? Why not monitor there as well?

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