In New Labour's surveillance society, protecting the interests of central government and multi-national utility companies is more important than keeping the streets and
the houses of ordinary citizens safe.
Maintaining a police presence at the Cilfrew protest against the siting of a gas transfer station caused officers to be withdrawn from local towns like Skewen, as Emma Denholm's report in the Neath Guardian explains.
Frank Little writes: "Let me be clear. I am in favour of the gas pipeline, as it reduces England & Wales dependence on supplies from an increasingly capricious Russian state-controlled utility.
"However, it was wrong to divert police resources to what is basically a security company job. The implication that these respectable people now find themselves on a central police database of criminal suspects is very worrying."