- Financially, be it a fine or compensation.
- Custodially, either in prison or via a big brother type watch system, mainly involving tagging.
- Paying the debt back to society, normally in the form of community service.
- A warning, saying not to do it again or next time you'll really be in trouble.
And my point for this rant? We all saw the terrible fires that lead to deaths as fire swept through Australia in recent months. More locally, Wales has been seeing the dry weather leading again to gorse fires. The Police issue warnings, say that anyone found lighting them will be convicted of arson. The local school kids are subjected to 'talks' from the local bobby about the dangers of these fires, whereas in reality those in the know know exactly what causes them. Farmers.
Common land is fairly common (bdum tish) around here, and farmers use it to their best ability. The free feed for the sheep, cattle and horses means they can save themselves a fortune and claim for the feed using the EEC's subsidiary program. The problem is, as the land is over grazed, all that survives is the nasty hard reed like grasses that the livestock won't eat. The easiest way to restore this? Burn it, burn it all.
This was a typical example of one on Tuesday evening. As you can see, it caused some disruption as the fire encroached on the M4, and the Police had set a speed limit of 50 in case the wind changed direction. They also had untold numbers of fire engines in the area, the trees were fubar (look it up Dad) and the farmer was stood there, pointing at the direction the 'mythical kids' had been seen leaving earlier on that day. The Police are going to take the farmer's word for it, because he's lost all his grazing land and he's a respectable adult. The kids, however, become an unsolved crime statistic because they were never there in the first place. The farmers need to have their bits burnt off in the gorse fires. Or at least placed in the stocks, where locals could flagellate their bums with burning gorse branches.