Sunday, June 22, 2008

The Naija Police

Earlier today I was in church, one of those good days you'll say. I saw a printout for a program, the venue read, "Egunje Bustop". This busstop is the church busstop.

Now "Egunje" is the word for bribery in yoruba. and guess what, it's so named because of the police check point nearby. I have fallen there victim once too. They (the police now) harass people with their guns and make motorists and bikers pay for going about their normal activities. Recently they just beg, albeit forcefully for money.

An interesting consideration about the Naija police, they are the law enforcement agency of the executive and in their spare time, double as the judiciary. They slap and harass people if they think they can get away with it. They lie against you to buttress points, and they are especially brilliant when it comes to dictating count charges. Once a new law is promulgated, they start enforcing (the good part) and cash in by quickly sentencing the public to certain amount, usually a percentage of what the law stipulates for offences, which naturally goes into their wallets. That you may consider welcome, depending on your orientation.

I'm so motivated to buy a camera now so I can take shots of the Naija police in action, and the other traffic law enforcement agencies in their dubious everyday acts. It's so easy to capture an incidence anyway because they are always at it. Today, they stopped the pitiable bus I was in for taking an overhead bridge; apparently the government recently announced busses should stop taking the overhead brigdes for some reasons. The guy parted with N700 (about $7) in settlement. has an entry about them too! Interesting...

There Justice Minister Bola Ige, confronted with the general incivility of local police, placed a malediction on the cads. Said the Hon. Bola Ige, "I pray that God will make big holes in their pockets."
-- "Sic Semper Tyrannis! Oppressors Face People's Justice", American Spectator, May 1, 2001

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Zen of Python: By Tim Peters

Beatiful is better than ugly.
Explicit is better than implicit
Simple is better than complex
Complex is better than complicated
Flat is better than nested
Sparse is better than dense
Readability counts
Special cases aren't special enough to break the rules
Although practicality beats purity
Errors should never pass silently
Unless explicitly silenced
In the face of ambiguity, resist the temptation to guess.
There should be one - and preferably only one - obvious way to do it.
Although that way may not be obvious at first unless you are Dutch.
Now is better than never.
Although never is often better than *right* now.
If the implementation is hard to explain, it's a bad idea.
If the implementation is easy to explain, it may be a good idea.
Namespaces are one honking great idea -- let's do more of those!
Don't click that link except you love programming :)