A MAN with no intention to defraud, caught on the Underground with an inadequate ticket, judged instantly to be guilty of cheating and then fined pounds 10 on the spot is very apt "to kick up a bit of a fuss", justifiably, in our view. Unable to sort out hardened bilkers from the rest, the Underground finds it simplest to punish everyone found with a ticket that does not match the journey. Asked to justify such a penalty, which runs contrary to every canon of justice, the authorities point out that they are losing millions to fraud. We should be clear about this. The rule of law is being bent, not by Mr Clarke, but by the Underground.
THERE IS something quite heartening about Kenneth Clarke's pounds 10 fine for failing to pay the correct fare on the Tube. For, if nothing else, it proves that at least one of our leading politicians is prepared to brave the vagaries of our down-at-heel public transport system along with the rest of us.
MR CLARKE was nabbed by the fare gauleiters at Kennington station. Where these fine-Nazis score is in their realisation that the middle classes will always pay. We become embarrassed, will apologise and cough up. We cringe when we find that we have broken the rules, albeit unintentionally. Our meekness merely encourages these nasty bullies. Middle England can take only so much. It is time for us to revolt against these grotesque fines. Call for the cops and let them do their worst. Until the Tube improves, let us take our cases to the House of Lords, chanting all the way, "We shall not/ we shall not be fined".Reuse content