420: the new number of the beast

Posted on April 20, 2006 

420: the new number of the beast

This is where it gets spooky. In February last year, 420 people were “accurately” stopped by Metropolitan police ANPR in London (civil libertarians might want to note that 3,318 more people were mistakenly stopped by police after they were falsely identified by the system).

420 is quite clearly a number not to be associated with CCTV alone. It has the ring of freedom about it, used as it is by old American freaks and younger counter-culture types as a loose reference to the act of smoking pot and the attitude of smokers – 420 means “good times”.

This despite the fact that, as the Americans would arrange it, Adolf Hitler was born on 4/20, or 20 April.

Take, for example, biometrics, the 420 prisoners who were left wandering relatively freely around a high security jail for a month after the biometrically-controlled locks failed and wardens failed to notice.

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