Within five years a lot of police work in Britain will be done by private security firms like G4S - which used to be called Group Four Security until most of the letters were stolen from the title some years ago. (Rogue muppets from Sesame Street were suspected, but never charged.)
Critics are concerned that private security firms will be less publicly accountable and transparent than traditional police forces. What they don't seem to realise is that public accountability severely hampers the speed and optimal-result outcome-attainment programming within an arrest-prosecution-sentencing environment which a leaner, fast-track private service can deliver. Accountability (or red-tape, to use the technical term) compromises costs and leads to time-heavy procedural structures with consequent detrimentalisation of end-consumer financial-outlay-responsibilities.
Putting security and policing services out to tender would guarantee lower costs for the taxpayer, and hard-working social-nucleus stakeholders (previously known as families) alike. These costs will be reduced through such measures as more competitive wage structuring, more condensed training processes and the offer to operatives of greater personal freedom in the provision of their post-retirement needs. Cynics translate this as meaning an underpaid undertrained security force who will have to take care of their own pensions. All of which is technically true; what opponents of the scheme ignore is that having an unmotivated resentful, bad-tempered security force possibly open to bribery, random violence and mood swings is a more efficient system because it encourages people to steer well clear of the law wherever they can.
But the measures need to go further.
Our current legal system is evidence-based. This requires time-consuming processes involving the examination and cross-examination of witnesses, statements and all manner of forensic investigation. A far more efficient and cost-effective system would be not evidence-based, but faith-based: what is needed is not people who waste time and tax-payers' money painstakingly examining and weighing up evidence before making a decision, but people with a natural gut instinct about who is guilty and who isn't; people who can just look at someone and feel it in their bones. This offers delivery of considerable cost-efficient savings to the the hard ordinary working family tax payer, avoiding trials, lawyers, appeals and all the red tape and unnecessary bureaucracy this entails.
Still further savings are viable. They will centre on the privatisation of liberty.
An assumption that everyone is presumed guilty until proven innocent could deliver massive social benefits.
The standard default position for all members of society would be accommodation in secure residential units, with basic amenities provided. No-one would be incarcerated, just not allowed to go out unless they bought liberty vouchers. These would be available at different prices for different periods of time.
The liberty voucher scheme would guarantee absolute freedom of movement within a far less threatening environment, because people tempted to pilfer, commit street crime or burglary out of diminshed means would not be out and about. They will all be in the same place, easy to catch and living among people who have very little worth stealing in the first place. Keeping people of similar economic means together also reduces the frustration and social dissatisfaction generated by being exposed constantly and - unfairly - to people with more money, thus effecting consistent upswing trends on the General Populace Happiness Tracker.
Just as street crime would plummet, gang warfare could be conducted within confined areas. With a greater concentration of gangs in a smaller area, contact and therefore body count would increase, reducing the core problem exponentially.
Cities would be less crowded, roads less congested, with obvious environmental benefits.
Ironically, many opponents of this Pro-hard-working-ordinary tax-payer-people just trying-to-do -the-best-for-their-families-Scheme typically profess sincere ecological concerns and commitment. Frankly, it's time they decided what kind of world they want to live in.