Faithful readers of this column will know that I do not have a television licence for my flat in London, because I do not have a television. As a result, I receive a couple of letters a month demanding that I prove my innocence, which I never answer because I do not see why I should. Indeed, they normally remain unopened.
This week, however, I received one in a window envelope. Through the window, I could see the calendar for November and the 24th of the month circled in red. ‘We’re giving you ten days to get correctly licensed’, it said, and implied that if I did not do so it would send an ‘Enforcement Officer’ after me to start a ‘full investigation’. Such messages are wrong, and may be well be illegal. TV Licensing is not a public authority, and therefore has no power of enforcement, so Steve Latham, the enforcement manager, who sent the letter, is falsely titled.
It also libels all bona fide non-television owners to whom it sends this message because it implies we are cheats. I think I shall invent an authority called something like ‘Keeping Kids Safe’, and write to Mr Latham saying that he has ten days to prove he is not a paedophile. If we do not hear from him, we shall send Tom Watson MP to break his door down.
This is an extract from Charles Moore's Notes. The full article can be found here.
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