Connex – Making Money From Alienation And Violence

What the cunting Jesus do Connex think they’re playing at? According to this article in The Age last weekend, a group of their Authorised Officers (AO’s) have hospitalised a man who had a valid ticket and concession card because he refused to give them more personal information than he was legally required to. They dragged him out of the train on to a deserted platform and proceeded to beat the shit out of him. When challenged by a concerned resident who heard the victim’s cries, they claimed to be the police and told her to go away.

Stories like this are far too familiar although few of them reach the media. I have a friend who was on a train late at night when four or five burly AO’s confronted a lone teenager and stood over him prodding and threatening when he couldn’t find his concession card. When my friend, the only other person in the carriage, concerned that the young man was being unduly intimidated asked him if he was OK, the officers turned on the defender. They told my friend he was interfering with their work and that they were going to fine him for impeding official business. He tried to explain that he was concerned for a young man who appeared scared. They dragged my friend off the train (yes, he did have a valid ticket and, no, he had not done or said anything inappropriate) at the next station, once again a deserted platform, where one officer punched him in the face and another kneed him in the chest, knocking him to the ground before threatening to do further harm if he got up. My friend stayed down, went home and made no official mention of the incident.

Many incidents don’t get reported because with AO’s working in gangs of 4 or more, they have the strength of numbers. 6 people with uniforms telling the same story against one person with no witnesses. What’s the point in contesting it? The propaganda is pasted all over the trains about what they’re allowed to do and when they choose to extend the boundaries of their powers, what can an ordinary member of the public do?

It would seem these Gestapo-like goons are just part of the great new public transport plan. There’s Metlink’s ongoing publicity against the Fare Evader. What the fuck? Every customer on trains is exposed to this insulting campaign that assumes a level of criminality in everyone. I used to buy tickets all the time but I don’t now because I’m sick to death of being patronised and insulted. Fuck that! Treat me like a criminal and I’ll fucking act like one.

A former Connex employee tells me that even if everyone paid for tickets all the time Connex would still lose money. They pump up the figures of loss due to fare evasion to illicit public sympathy and to justify a policy of mob-like standover tactics. Their real revenue, what gets them over the line is fines! Yes, they rely on people NOT buying tickets because the fines are worth more than ticket sales! Think about it: one fine equals over forty passengers on two-hour full-fare tickets – pretty good way to beef up the day’s takings. They deliberately put a publicity campaign in place that disenfranchises their customers and then further fuck us off by openly treating us like prison-fodder with their thugs threatening, harassing and assaulting anyone who even vaguely steps out of line or questions their actions. Connex don’t provide the service that we’re paying for, trains routinely being either late or early and their frequently cancelling services without notice. They’re unaccountable, untouchable and openly hostile. The natural human reaction is to protest in the easiest way available – not buying a ticket. I mean why not? Fuck them, the multi-national bastards. Connex doesn’t give a fuck about the people of Victoria.

It’s nothing short of robbery. Isn’t Public Transport social infrastructure? Until the government sold it, we paid for it not only with tickets but with taxes, we owned it. It never had to be profitable because it was something we deemed a benefit to society and we wore the cost. The whole PT culture has changed, every tram used to have a conductor. He’d sell you a ticket, tell you where you needed to change or get off, he’d ask undesirables to leave. Everyone bought tickets and without contest because he provided a service as well as being a point of sale. It was civilised and human. It was socially inclusive.

These AO’s are the outward expression of a PT system that is cynical, punitive and criminally violent. They’re complete arseholes. Not smart enough to be cops, not tough enough to be bouncers, they’re like parking inspectors with a license-to-detain. They flock onto already-over-crowded carriages and fuck with people who are already shat that they’re an hour late, and then have to put up with some stink-mouthed fuckhole barking at them to see a ticket they should never have paid for. I can’t wait for the inevitable day when AO’s unwittingly pick on someone with some self-defence knowledge and get the absolute cunt kicked out of them.

One person confronted by six can get away with using quite a lot of force in self-defence, and since we know AO’s routinely abuse their power it is quite reasonable to think that you may be in serious physical danger if surrounded by AO’s, especially if you’re in a deserted environment. So, theoretically, it may be possible to get away with killing one of the bastards even if you got caught. This little piece from the College Of Law at ANU’s website offers a small ray of hope:

Burden of Proof in Action: a case of self defence.

Lets examine how the evidential burden operates through the example of a killing which the defendant claims was done in self-defence. The legal burden rest with the prosecution to prove all the elements of the offence of murder: the killing was intentional, defendant’s act caused the death etc. To allow the jury to consider self-defence, the defendant must adduce some evidence to support that argument: some evidence that the killing was a reasonable response to the act of the victim. The defendant does not have to prove that it was self defence. If there is sufficient evidence for the issue to be considered, the prosecution bears the legal burden to prove that the killing was not in self-defence.

Well, it’s food for thought. I’m not suggesting that anyone should go around hurting other people, please remember that violence is not a solution unless you’re getting paid for it. However, if you know anyone who has bashed a Connex officer, let me know, I need a good laugh. I’m don’t think I’m gonna bash anyone. I wish I could sometimes, but sadly I never learnt the skills – the kicks-to-the-knee, the pressure points. Damn…all that wasted youth. I’m just gonna fire up the PS3, shoot some virtual cunts and dream of freedom. Die you grey-coated fucks!


16 Responses to “Connex – Making Money From Alienation And Violence”

  1. Old Gregg Says:

    out of all your deliciously vicious posts so far, this is the one which made me feel most enthusiastic about actually going out and preaching your word in public, or else, going on a violent transport rampage (a transpage?) – armed only with a plank of wood and an unmovable sense of righteousness!

  2. there should be a “stab an AO” day once a month. ive always thought about how satisfying it would be to shank one of those arrogant faggots in the stomach

  3. Buck Frain Says:

    Whoa, richo, steady on big fella! I’m all for gettin’ stabby once a month, I think it’s a great idea but the homophobia’s a bit unnecessary. Gotta keep that rage focussed.

  4. i totally agree that most of those fucksticks deserve a beating. i catch the tram all the time to work and every now and then i see these fat fucks walkin around with sunglasses on like they own the world. i really wouldn’t mind seeing em get wrecked. same goes for bouncers. fuck em all, somebody legalise guns so i can do a few drive-bys on clubs and trams

  5. Connex employs thugs who generally want to hurt people. These guys are ex-bouncers, ex-cops, try hard cops and general street thugs. I completely agree with what you are saying.

  6. Thursday 29th May this year, at approx 8.40am I had an altercation with 2 Connex Authorised Officers at Melbourne Central Train Station. It eventuated that I was rushed by FOUR AO’s, pushed into a wall then forced and held onto the ground until police arrived. I showed no aggression or did anything to warrant any kind of physical response from them. The 2 AO’s were being arrogant, intimidating and were provoking me to word my dislike for the system and their behaviour in particular. Their response was violence. I have witness statements. I wrote to Connex.
    Connex completed their investigation Friday and told me over the phone that they found no evidence that the Authorised Officers acted inappropriately. Its what I expected.
    The Publlic Transport Ombudsman is now running their own investigation into the incident. They will request the Connex report as well as CCTV footage and any statements Connex gathered during their investigation. I expect to hear back in approximately 3 weeks. Ombudsman Victoria is interested in the case and so is the Consumer Action Law Centre of Victoria. I have been in touch with a Victorian print journalist.
    Regardless of the result of these investigations this stuff runs very deep and yes its a systemic problem I have and its also an example of our society suffering. Fascism is alive and well. The behaviour of ticket inspectors and bouncers is only a taste of what the REAL WORLD has to offer. We are all little children that need to be told what to do and what to think and we will be spanked if we are naughty. I asked my mother the other day what she would think of me if I blew up canberra parliament house. I think she felt it would be for the common good! When I was assaulted in Melbourne Central there was a big crowd of people gathered all shouting their dissaproval and disgust; a good demonstration of disbelief and awareness from a public that knows it is docile and does not accept it. Unfortunately we do accept it. That is why nobody has blown up parliament. I dont think I am going to either. But I will do something. I will start by trying to educate a mostly sleeping public and start an advertising campaign of my own. Just bloody handing out flyers at a train station to commuters advising them of their rights would be a good start. For example Do you know that Authorised Officers are required by law to provide you with their name and address in writing when asked by you, if they ask for your name and address? I bet the majority of train users dont know that. But thats just the start. Im going to buy a digital camera next week and start taking photographs of these goons and plastering them all over the internet. I will deliberately travel to stations and observe their behaviour and record it. Then I will advertise this behaviour ot the public. I will encourage commuters to make it difficult for AO’s to do their job. I will print posters condeming this system as fascist. And why the hell not? it is fascist. its authoritarian. Some people just dont realise it or they are aware of it but are so placated by consumerism they dont care. Isnt it time we stopped being passive and did something about it? If not for ourselves but for the future societies?

  7. Love what you are saying Mark. I am the mother of a 24 year old who has been assaulted to date 3 times by Connex guards. Despite witnesses and photographic evidence in court as to injuries he sustained while trying to get up off the ground from where 4 of them slammed him, my son was fined $1000. His crime on that particular occasion ? Running to catch a bus and not showing his validated ticket. These thugs have the blessing of their employer as they are a great money spiner for the government.
    I hope you mean it about handing out fliers. I would be more than happy to print them for you !

  8. fareadvader Says:

    u are a fuck wit,u could of least got a pic of connex ao,s doing there work not yarra if u what to see how they work check out u-tube fare evasion at flinders street.


  10. You can buy an Assault Rifle here in South Carolina USA at the age of 18, and a pistol at the age of 21, so we don’t see too much abuse of power here, except the cops, but they have guns too 🙂

  11. If you ever see anyone getting a bashing like the ones described, break out your mobile phone and film it, then promptly give a copy to a TV news station. Footage catching the scumbags in the act is the only way to unambiguously combat the violence and lies of the scumbags in question.

    And BARB you fuckwit if you’d bothered to actually read the fucking blog entry and comments you’d not that it’s PEOPLE WITH TICKETS getting assaulted that’s the issue, so GO FUCK YOURSELF YOU MORONIC HATE-FILLED ILLEGAL-AND-IMMORAL-VIOLENCE-EXCUSING PIECE OF SHIT.

  12. Cherax destructor Says:

    They have to leave work sometime you know… =)

  13. We should set up a website where we’d put records of those power-abusing cunts in action together with their photographs, names and adresses.
    It would be quite a job – basically, spying – but hey, such a result it might give. They want hatred? They’re gonna get it 🙂

  14. I reckon if everyone who didn’t have a ticket got belted then there wouldn’t be any room to walk around the city for all the carnage. What’s the bet that half of these cunts bring it on themselves and then pretend they’re angels. Fuck the lot of ’em on both sides.

    I need one as Yarra Trams knows in fact its a crimminal offence and if IF THEY HAVE have a history or culture of encouraging staff to give false reports, it needs to be addressed.
    Its also in the public interest.
    How many others have fines for no breaches..and when they reveal the notes to a Magistrate you probably don’t see, then get a you dont know that the Met person has written a false report to begin with?
    Met guys seeminlgy dont know its an offense to mislead a 3rd party knowing their report would be relied upon by them. But it does leave someone defenseless against a report like this.
    It is also a form of defamation and dishonest of THEM. When taken to court in fact the prosecutors and Magistrate would rely on them as accurate.
    It is a misuse of the legal system.
    He didnt ID himself so coudl have been anyone and as a girl i was scared to be taken off a tram by an unknown male refusing a valid ticket already bought?
    I purchased a ticket, and was waiting for my change on the tram, then afterwards he came up to me and said he would fine me anyway. I didnt know who he was, i htought he was some random guy.
    I told him he can’t fine me for PURCHASING a ticket.
    I am taking him to EO Vic for age, disability and race harassment as he clearly hassled me as I look younger but was 33 , dismissing my name is a racial slur and was a girl on my own who looked younger, and looked vulnerable. He was on his own and hassled me from Melb Uni to Collins street until 2 of his colleagees joined him.
    Who would get off a tram with an unidentified male when you bought a ticket?
    Its a racial slur to tell me my name is not my name, as in that case 3 daughters including 2 TWINS are called by the same name (its a Catholic prefix and silent.)
    He refused my name as my name ,ID, address , JUST got his notes..he lies in them, he never ID himself and took me off tram despite I was holding a valid ticket.
    At no point did he show his ID OR ANNOUNCE AN INSPECTION.
    He had no legal grounds to take ME off tram given I had bought a valid ticket…THE TICKET TIME OF PURCHASE SHOWS THE PURCHASE BEFORE HIS REPORT OR APPROACH.
    It woudl be common sense he could only detain me if i didnt have a ticket. As it is he never asked to see it as he knew it was valid and was trying to fine me FOR a non event.
    He got on the next tram I was on and this time they announced an inspection and showed their ID. Of course the recognised me and didnt ask for mine given that he knew I had a valid ticket, even though he didnt ask it on the first time either as he knew i had it and he had no right to detian me unless he ASKED ME FOR A VALID TICKET AND I IDDNT HAVE ONE OR REFUSED ONE.
    HE MUST have hoped when he approached me it wasnt valid eg concession when i didnt have one. As he did he had no groudns to ASK ME FOR MY NAME OR ADDRESS.
    It was already dropped SO no fines, at no point did he ID himself, and he could only ask ID etc IF I DID NOT have a valid ticket and at no point did he ask to see mine or anyones ticket.
    I thought he was some random guy hassling me,it was unlawful to take me off the tram. Mary is in front of my name as mum is from a catholic country just like my sisters…ITS COMMON THERE EG JESUS AND MARY AND TOLD EO THIS AND HIM. MY BLOODY FIRST NAME IS NOT MARY..IN THAT CASE ME AND MHY TIWN ARE BOTH MARY.AND MY OTHER SISTER???
    He has clearly falsified his notes given my ticket even predates time of his report. I went in to infingements and showed them my ticket.
    He was on his own and how many others have a fine for no breach agianst his false notes. It was unlawful arrest and detention.
    He states in his notes he asked me for a ticket and i said ‘I am getting one now?’
    No I already had one and was waiting for the change. I in fact told him he can’t prevent a purchase in order to fine me or fine me for having a valid ticket. DID he wrestle me from the machine? I am 162 cm and small build.
    Common sense would say that if he really asked me for a ticket and I jumped up and said ‘I am getting one now…well, he would have had to wrestle me to not get one..given it takes a bit of time to feed coins into a mahine for a dialy full fare given the machine closes off after each coin goes in.
    I had expalined Mary prefixes all our names including my TWIN and did he really think my parents called us Mary, Mary and Mary?
    I told him I have PTSD..I can’t remember things like numbers etc well, its why I explained my rental address, mums address on my licence and my mail goes to GPO given I can’t rely on my memory BUT I HAD GIVEN HIM ADDRESS WHERE I LIVED.
    He claims he didnt know I had PTSD but I told him and he said ‘Tell a Magistrate.’ I said I would given I had a report on impact of crime that gave me PTSD IN THE MAGISTRATES COURTS FILES. HE slagged of my disabilty adn my qualifications, my name, looked shocked when i said my age..he must have thought I was a kid and easy pickings.
    He refused my licence and even when he looked at it right outside police station said ‘I dont care’. It didnt verify my address, just that what I had been saying…that my licence says Ballarat as even police knew I had recourring addrerss changes as part of impact of crime on my life.
    If he had rung it would find I didnt live there.
    He didnt attemt to verify my address and HAD he rung up mum would have found its HER ADDRESS where i dont housemate can still verify i livced with him and recourring homelessness is one of ther OWN CRITERIA why someone cant give an licence doesnt reflect where i live BUT i gave him WHERE I ACTUALLY LIVED and its why I mentioned PTSD. I thing I know my own bloody name though and where I live.
    HIS notes were false and its an offense to falisify evidence knowing it would be relied upon by a 3rd party in court ie a Magistrate.
    The valid ticket speaks for itself, as does common sense. A false name would be someone elses entirely not my own, as he dsicounted racial / religious signiance and equivalent is telling a Muslim Mahommad is not a real name.
    I have a PTSD report and doctors notes.
    He couldnt ask for my name or addres as I had a ticket. Would anhone else agree to go with a random male hassling them on the tram?>
    Its still upsetting for me to be detained against my will. Even my victims of crime report says i am effectively dependant on public transport. I would appreicate support and I think its in the public interest. Even now I am having to argue that my name is my name.
    I dont think it occured to him to confiscate my valid ticket or alter his time of ticket shows its before he approached me.

  16. I came across this article while looking for something else. You’ll be pleased to know that I gave it the prompt attention it deserved: printed it out and wiped my arse with it.

    Had you actually bothered to undertake any reseach before farting out the above bullshit you would have found that the revenue from fines goes to the government, not the operator. They receive a small amount of that, about $20 to cover costs of dealing with fare-evading pieces of shit like yourself.

    I also claim that the story about your “friend” is bullshit.

    Lick my ballsack bitch.

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