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The State is not your Friend

I saw this phrase somewhere recently. It is an interesting phrase. Obviously the state (or King) does provide certain services including protective services. However, it is quite clear that the state is not anyone's friend. It operates in the way in which it operates (partially by the rule of law, partially by direction of the executive and partially in the interests of the people operating it).

The evidence from the mess in Public Family Law is that it acts directly against the interests of both children and wider families when a "friend" would not be expected to act in that way.

It is against this background that the growth in databases needs to be considered. We have a consequentialist argument from Lord Justice Sedley wherein he argues that it is more important to have greater state power with all the potential abuse than have a situation in which one offender escapes the sanction of the state. (see link)

I think it would be interesting to do a study of the judgments and the judges involved that are in the public domain. That is, perhaps, a task for the future.


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