Gareth & McGrath,
Anon's actions (didn't it used to be called 'Summary Justice') may seem extreme, but they worked. Whether the evil-doer then moved off and took it out on someone else is immaterial. Nevertheless it may be OK for some people, but not for others.
I guess everyone's got a view and we all think our view's best, but surely what we need is consistency - for all adults to have a clear view of what society demands of individuals' behaviour, and for them to apply the rules in a consistent way?
It seems that nowadays individuals' freedoms to do as they like seem to take priority over their duty to society. Wasn't always that way - we hear about how, in the 30's when people had nothing, not even a job, you could go out and leave your door unlocked without fear of being burgled. In those days people had standards that transcended the 'Me First And Sod The Others' philosophy that we've allowed to take over today.