Pere Lebrun for the fucking win. I can't overemphasize how much I was waiting for that!
Let's start from the middle. Virtually anyone who has used the word "trainers" in their article or blog post or whatever about the riots is disqualified from further comment*. As PL suggests, do you really think that taste, of all things, in looted goods, has any significance unless your goal is to either restore the law-and-order you either love as a member of the right-wing or detested as a member of the Left until that order was broken in a way that didn't support your paternalistic view of what the working class should be up to?
Ironically, the same violence that is necessary for the right wing to justify further repression, further cuts is now being used to establish hierarchy on the Left. Did it ever occur to any of you that the reason these riots don't conform to a desire engendered by years spent leisurely poring over the latest missives from teachers at the European Graduate School is that there is, ultimately, no real place for the rioters in your theoretical non-neoliberal vision of the future as well? If you think sneaker thieves idiots now, what were your plans for them tomorrow?
Damage to property is not worse than damage to humans. The violence of the state is worse than anything done within the UK so far. Take your self-satisfied brooms and go to Libya or Iraq.
*What teenagers aren't status obsessed? Fashion obsessed? What would you steal if you were a looter? Rare vinyl? Some "cool" thick-white-plastic-framed sunglasses? Do you think the guy who stole a bag of rice stupid? I think him quite practical!