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The utter derangement of British political culture

When two working women who look after each other’s children are told they are breaking the law by doing so because they are not registered with the state to do that, the only sane and moral thing to do is to break the law and to urge as many other people as possible to do the same.

Oh yes… not that it should matter, but the two women in question are policewomen.

50 comments to The utter derangement of British political culture

  • jdm

    not that it should matter, but the two women in question are policewomen

    I’ll be very surprised if the way out of this PR problem is not to use this very fact.

    None of the robots in government will see the stupidity; instead, an exemption will be made for approved citizens, like policemen, and normal citizens will still be subject.

  • Brad

    I heard the same type of thing the other day in Wisconsin, USA.

    A woman has a bus stop outside her house, and she offered to accept the children into her house until the bus arrives, free of charge, so the parents wouldn’t have to wait around and so could get to work on time. She was told that she didn’t have a day-care license and was breaking the law.

    And people are supposed to be charitable why? All it does is get you kicked in the head.

    We are well on the road to “that which isn’t forbidden is compulsory”. Every day that goes by I see that noose constricting just a little bit tighter. Unless it is a directive from Central Command it is illegal.

  • Kevyn Bodman

    And ‘that which isn’t compulsory is forbidden’.

    An absurd action by the authorities.

    I read somewhere else that the two women were ratted on by a neighbour.

    So now we are where we were centuries ago, when people were encouraged to denounce heretics and witches.
    Now we are encouraged to denounce,denounce just about anybody at all.

  • Pa Annoyed

    Gordon had heard something about Britain becoming something called a nanny state, and that voters thought this was bad. So he’s regulated nanny’s.

  • Does Great Yarmouth still have a crazy house or was it closed because nowadays no one can tell the difference?

  • lucklucky

    This goes much beyond political culture. This is deep in society and i have no doubts that the Leftist Zero Risk society build by Media, Politians and the People will lead obviously to Zero Children Society and Zero Freedom. Is England already dead or it is just sleeping? I think the Parrot could be replaced today.

  • Chris H

    The nosey neighbour will hopefully be named and shamed sometime soon. What a loathsome piece of vermin they must be.

  • There is an interesting comparison between this case, with (as I understand it) neighbours complaining about noise from children playing in the garden, with the indifference shown by police and local authority in the case of the Pilkington family.

    The state we now have obviously finds helping the disadvantaged so much more difficult than hounding ordinary people.

    Perhaps if they spent less time sniffing about the mass of ordinary behaviour, they would have more time (and money) to help the much more modest number of disadvantaged people.

    Best regards

  • cjf

    The face of reality offered by the state is, otherwise, called “mooning”

  • Pa Annoyed

    From the BBC:

    Registered childminders must pay an annual fee of £103 to Ofsted.

    Ofsted’s guide to registration says registered childminders must attend an appropriate training course, carry out a risk assessment of the premises on which the childcare takes place and prepare a written statement of procedures to be followed in the event of complaints.

    The law also allows Ofsted to carry out checks to ensure that childminders comply with these rules.

    £103! I think that makes it very clear.

    I also found out only recently that one of the things the Ofsted Inspectors are checking for is delivery of the government’s “nappy curriculum”, and achievement of all the appropriate educational targets. Apparently, registered childminders are one of the groups it applies to.

    There’s a rather disturbing Guardian article defending it (of course!) by a professional child minder who says things like “What parents and professionals need to recognise is that we all now work to the same regulations” and “I have devised my own system of recording development that is simple to do and not too time consuming. It includes keeping photos of the children, along with notes about the fun activities they have been doing.” Photos?! Of other people’s children? Better not let the social workers see those!

    But what is really worrying is when she says “I know some have decided to leave childminding, citing the paperwork as the driving force. I think that those who remain are – and always have been – committed professionals,…”

    So all the child minders who don’t sign up to the government’s agenda have left the profession. What does that leave? And now would you want to entrust your children to their care?

  • permanentexpat

    “land of Hope & Glory,
    Mother of the Free…….”

    ….means nothing today…the Brit equivalent of ‘Fado’ with all its ‘Saudade’ & utter hopelessness.

  • What the f*** is an ofsted, anyway?

    OK, seriously, I know it’s some ghastly government agency, but I always find it reminiscent of Newspeak when government agencies name themselves like this (or decapitalising all but the initial letter of an acronym, as in NATO becoming Nato). Remember Miniluv?

    (On an unrelated topic, that’s part of the reason why I refer to Fa Irt Rade: because splitting “fair trade” into three words is no dumber than combining it into one word.)

  • Camryn

    I’m a regular reader of this site, so I read about plenty of shocking stuff about the UK, but this was the most shocking yet.

    Excessive business regulations are bad enough, but when they’re applied to non-commercial activity as well then it’s so stupid it makes my head hurt. Does this mean UK citizens could get fined for providing unlicensed nursing when they give someone a bandage or unlicensed food retailing when giving a neighbour a cup of sugar.

    I’m a UK citizen, but born elsewhere. I’m increasingly glad I’ve never taken the option to live and work in the UK. I could feel the oppression when there visiting family.

    I currently live in the US, but – as people have mentioned – people are becoming stupidly risk averse here too. Where next?

  • veryretired

    I was just reading an article today about some new rules being implemented by one of the states (Massachusetts, I think it was) which will complicate that states’ non-commercial day care providers with numerous requirements and documentation tasks.

    It is very similar to this situation, both in theoretical derivation, and in practical effect.

    These constantly multiplying rules and regulations are the lifesblood of the guild movement, which has existed for centuries in various fields, and is always renewing itself by finding newer forms of work which must be made more complex, therefore restricting the potential practitioners and increasing the costs.

    In the nanny state context, these rules, as in education, especially, are the overt manifestation of the usually hidden nannyite belief that people are too stupid and incompetent to be allowed to raise and teach their own children, or make informal arrangements for their care away from state supervision.

    All these nanny tenets are dressed up in the usual “but its for the good of the children” boilerplate justifications, as are so many intrusive rules and regs by those who know better than us peons how things should be with our lives.

    In fact, all of this nonsense is based on one very fundamental, and fundamentally wrong, assertion—that political placeholders and the cadres of the state always and forever know what’s best for everyone, children especially, because of their superior concern and compassion.

    That this view is flatly contradicted by any and all evidence from decades of failed state child care facilities, failed state school educational systems, and massively counterproductive state welfare programs when compared to family child care, private and home schooling, and private charitable organizatins for the aid of the poor is blanked out and washed away by a flood of self-serving rationalizations and unfounded assertions.

    As the state slowly ratchets down its tightening vise, attmpting to control ever more minor occupations and private behaviors, it creates the very pressure required to blow the cork out of the bottle.

    Several seemingly impregnable and vigorously controlling states have collapsed before our eyes when their populations realized the terrifying images that had frightened them into submission were nothing more than the illusions created by a group of old, incompetent, and frightened men hiding behind a curtain, and putting on a show of roaring flames and clashing gongs to intimidate them.

    How much less frightening are the prissy clerks of some regional child protection board, or the fussy scolds of the local child care association.

    One of the significant elements motivating the recent Tea party protests in the US is the realization that not only don’t these state cadres have any right to take many of the actions they have taken, but they have little or no special knowledge or expertise that would lead to a probability that any of their big, critical programs are even going to work.

    The age of the unchallenged expert is over, and a great component of the submissive attitudes that have facilitated much of the statist rise to power has failed like a roof beam with dry rot.

    It is free societies, with all their chaotic discord and lack of centralized controls, which are truly stable.

    It is the repressed social construct which, for all its seeming strength, is fragile, wobbly, and fearfully aware of its own cracks and fissures.

    These unending attempts at repression and control are the result of fear and ignorance, not knowledge and confidence.

    The little dog has pulled aside the curtain, and, lo and behold, it’s just an old man with some smoke machines and mirrors.

    When you hear laughter and derisive snorts at whatever the nannies try to put over, then you will know that this battle has been won, at least for the time being.

    Because, you know, they never give up trying to save you from yourself.

  • 'Nuke' Gray

    Perry, the situation is worse than you realise.
    These amateur baby factories have been doing an adequate job so far, on average, but we should be able to lift everyone above the average by licencing every female, and only allowing the best carers to actually concieve and raise future voters- I mean KIDS!
    Won’t someone outlaw motherhood, for the sake of the children?

  • cjf

    Well-meaning? For the good? The basic deceit of evil people is the pretense of good intentions.

    Soylent Green, anyone?

  • michael

    I see we are about to get another database. Anyone who owns a dog, or who has ever owned one, will be on a database of “dog chips”. I’ve told my cat that his days are numbered.

  • guy herbert

    Brendan O’Neill mentioned the other day.

    On the Stansted Express where there’s a poster encouraging us to text the word “Dodger” to 60006 if we suspect someone is trying to dodge their fare.

    What happens if you do? Is the train halted and boarded by inspectors who will check everyone and demand proof of their destination and travel plans – as now seems to be the case with aircraft.

    And then there’s this: Police setting up internal borders and arbitrary searches of the public on their own account –
    Dozens like this:

  • MarkE

    Pa Annoyed (quoting the Guardian):

    “What parents and professionals need to recognise is that we all now work to the same regulations”

    And the dopy mare saying that probably thinks regulation, standardisation, regimentation and conformity are a good thing.

    At the cost of some financial sacrifice, Mrs MarkE stayed at home to raise our children so we never got involved with childminders (licenced or otherwise), at which I am delighted. If we had needed our children looking after, we would not have chosen someone who saw conformity as a virtue, and no power on earth would make me leave a young child with anyone willing to follow the state’s “nappy curriculum”!

  • Ian Bennett

    Less alarming but arguably more stupid is the rationale behind the requirement for registration. These women were child-minding for “reward”; that reward was that the arrangement was reciprocal. By the same argument, if I buy you a pint then you buy me one, we’re both breaking the law by selling alcohol without a licence.

    We can only hope that there exists a tipping point for state interference such that the populace will, eventually, declare “thus far, and no further”, and the whole edifice will tumble.

  • Brian, follower of Deornoth

    ‘The nosey neighbour will hopefully be named and shamed sometime soon. What a loathsome piece of vermin they must be.’

    Au contraire, Chris H, this public-spirited individual has shown us the way to fight back, which is to use one gang of public-sector authoritarians to destroy another group of public-sector authoritarians.

    If you are having trouble with a public-sector employee, dob them in. They are bound to be guilty of something, since everyone is guilty of something, and even if they aren’t they’ll have a jolly time proving it.

  • MarkE

    Perhaps Ian and Brian between them have devised an answer to the problem of state intrusiveness. Every time I buy Ian a pint and he thens buys me one we, as law abiding citizens will have to surrender ourselves to the police; every time I give a neighbour a lift to the airport, and he returns the favour later by giving me a lift to the station, we will have to report ourselves (neither of us have a taxi licence); when I allow a friend to stay overnight and later stay at his place we must confess our lack of hotel permits (no health & safety, no fire exits etc) at our houses; if I lend a friend £5 in the knowledge he will do the same for me if I need it I will of course report myself to the FSA.

    We are all guilty and must all give ourselves up. It is then up to the state to efficiently process all these criminals without the entire criminal justice systems exploding.

  • Andrew Duffin

    They’re ahead of you, MarkE.

    They would just slap a civil penalty on you, no need for any due process, no witnesses, no trial, no debates, and very little admin.

    What’s that? You won’t pay it? Well then you can have your day in court, where you’ll be fined fifty times as much and (in cases involving childcare) be made to sign the Sex Offenders register. And naturally, your DNA will then be on their illegal database, where it will be kept for ever.

    But despair is a sin.

  • From the article:

    An Ofsted spokesman said it applied regulations found in the Childcare Act 2006, but was currently discussing the interpretation of the word “reward” with the department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF).

    Ian Bennett Wrote:

    Less alarming but arguably more stupid is the rationale behind the requirement for registration. These women were child-minding for “reward”; that reward was that the arrangement was reciprocal.

    This is what bothers me most about this. That people are discussing it terms of whether there was reward or not.

    I want the argument to be about whether or not the state has any business regulating child-minding at all.

  • Kim du Toit

    The basic principle behind all this is the destruction of the family — more specifically, parents’s roles in children’s upbringing — to be replaced by the State (and its “registered” caregivers).

    It’s right there in the Marx/Engels playbook somewhere.

    The official hostility towards home-schooling is another example.

  • Paul Marks

    I agree with every word of this post.

  • MarkE


    Couldn’t agree more. While there may be an argument that a licenced, registered, regulated childminder is better than the person Mrs MarkE and I prefer, the final decision should be ours. If I want to gamble with my children’s safety by entrusting them to a childminder who has not paid whatever it costs to be registered, why should I not? No doubt the local social services would be quick enough to point out our irresponsibility if any harm came to the children, but I would be prepared to take that risk.

    Obviously if social services were perfect and never made a mistake it would be foolish to ignore their advice; so why do they not simply offer advice which we may follow or not, instead of orders which we must obey?

  • PersonFromPorlock

    I know my position isn’t popular with the Brit commenters here, but this – or anything else the government can think of – is what “subjects” are subject to. You really need to start a “British Citizens” movement.

    Basing it offshore might be wise.

  • MarkE


    I fear you are right.

    I’ve already told my children I will disinherit them if they give me grandchildren and fail to leave the UK (empty threat – I have nothing for them to inherit, and I think they’ve realised that), and I now have a second threat – give me grandchildren and then ask me to look after them, and both my children and I will probably be imprisoned and the grandchildren taken into care.

  • Brian, follower of Deornoth

    That wasn’t quite what I had in mind, MarkE. I was suggesting you make use of the currently available anonymous-denunciation facilities to harass and intimidate the agents of oppression.

    Every time your civil-service neighbour does any of these things, put in a quiet word. Where necessary, say you can hear children crying in their house.

  • >> This is what bothers me most about this. That people are discussing it terms of whether there was reward or not.

    And presumably, the other side of this coin is that if I’m a dangerous lunatic, it’s perfectly acceptable for me to look after people’s kids if I don’t get a reward.

    Of course, I jest. The lunatics would never get past the good ol’ “Vetting and Barring Scheme”. Methinks the women above may not have been registered.

  • Gareth

    So long as the state uses taxpayers money to subsidise childcare the state will believe it has the right to define what constitutes childcare and to operate a cartel.

    With ‘Government’ comes Government interference. Always.

  • Sad to say, as one who believes in the rule of law [not laws] but your advice is the only way to go when faced with such a situation.

  • Gareth: I disagree. The state will believe it has the right to define what constitutes childcare regardless of whether is has subsidised it or not.

    The current state does not acknowledge the existence of a private sphere except at its own discretion and under its own terms.

    Its moral high ground is absolute.

  • veryretired

    I understand what you are saying Jay, but Gareth is correct in the practical sense of how things actually work.

    My family believes in private schools, and we have sent our children the best we could afford in our locality. I have been involved in several discussions over the years with other parents and school staff about the wisdom of school vouchers.

    I am against this idea as usually presented for the very reason that Gareth mentions—when the state pays, the state controls.

    I most emphatically do not want the same dumb down, “social pass” system inserted into the private school system. There is already more than enough PC, multi-culti nonsense that has seeped into the private achools as it is.

    It is unfortunate that the same teacher credentialing protocols must be followed by the private schools as well as the public ones in order to be accredited and have the students’ courses and grades accepted by universities.

    But that, of course, is one of the other interlocking aspects of how the state uses regulations and accreditation to control an entire subset of society such as child care and/or education.

    For all the statists’ protestations of good intent, it is clear that the desire to control is the driving factor, and the results of that control, whether good, bad, or indifferent, or, as in this case, ludicrous, are almost irrelevent.

    Such insanities go on every day, and it is only when they are publicized for some reason that the regulators pause to deal with the public inquiry, then go right back to it as quickly as possible.

    The officiousness of the statist mindset is as relentless as the tides.

  • Ian Bennett

    But, veryretired, the state’s interference is not limited to those arenas that it (ie, we) subsidise. You’ll note that the state has mandated that smoking is not allowed in certain privately-owned premises, that wheelchair access must be provided in others, that my choice of light bulb is limited, and so on.

  • Verity

    Very Retired – Agreed. I would like to see Teachers Training Colleges abolished as they are about nothing but socialist indoctrination of children.

    Anyone who feels called to teach should be able to train in an actual school, under the supervision of experienced teachers and a headmaster. Certainly, we all had better educations before Teachers Training Colleges got invented. And we were indoctrinated with honesty, good behaviour and cooperation in school, not daft One Worlder political correctness (aka Marxism).

  • Paul Marks

    Where did Mao learn his Marxism?

    At a teacher training college in China – a college that had large pictures of Karl Marx in it (as well as Marxist dominated textbooks – almost a century before the teacher training “classics” of Comrade William Ayers).

    The college was paid for by the kind donations of wealthy people (who also provided tuition costs and so on for students who, unlike Mao the eldest son of a successful farmer who owned his own farm, came from poor familes).

    And what happened to the these kindly wealthy people?

    Well those who were still around when the Communists took power 60 years ago were murdered, and if they were not around – well there families were murdered.

    But then Mao’s regime murdered more people than any other regime in the history of the world.

    Which is perhaps why the Empire State Buiding is celebrating the regime by displaying Mao’s flag today.

    They would have displayed the National Socialist Swastika, but they decided Hitler had not murdered enough people – only Mao was good enough for the new America.

    “But they can not do things like this”.

    “Yes we can”.

  • Laird

    Verity, I’m not really disagreeing with you about what teacher training colleges have become, but to say “we all had better educations before [they] got invented” is quite an overstatement. We’ve had such colleges for a very long time, long before either you or I were in school; it’s just that they were called “Normal Schools” back then. My 92-year-old mother-in-law is a graduate of one such school.

    There is nothing inherently wrong with prospective teachers learning good pedagogical techniques. If the teachers colleges focused on that (plus, of course, the specific academic discipline involved) there would be no problem (other than the fundamental philosophical issue of state-run schools, that is!). Unfortunately, as you pointed out, such colleges have become nothing more than socialist indoctrination camps.

  • Verity

    I concede your point, Laird, but what do you suggest as a solution? Teachers training colleges as now constituted – and indeed, as constituted for at least the last 20 years – are toxic breeding grounds for socialist indoctrination of children.

    And as everyone here knows, socialism is a mental illness … a derangement.

  • This EXACT SAME THING is happening in Michigan right now:


    You can add “the colonies” to the category of utterly deranged civil (dis)orders.

  • Samsung

    WTF!. Apparently our Orwellian Government thinks it can look after your kids better than you can. Your children are now the property of the Socialist State. We are living in a surreal nightmare. Somebody ought to tell these worthless f*ckers that we are living in Britain, not ancient Sparta.

    I was just thinking. It would have been better if these two young women were simply gay instead of decent law abiding police officers. If they were lesbian lovers, looking after each others kids, the f*cking Marxist c*nts on the political Left wouldn’t have gone near them with a barge pole. Not politically correct you see.

    And it’s nice to see that the Sun newspaper have abandoned the Labour Party. One more nail in the coffin. They obviously know that Labour are dead men walking.

  • veryretired

    Ian—My point, and I think the earlier commenter’s, is that allowing or asking for state funding will inevitably lead to ever increasing state controls and regulations.

    Of course the cadres try to regulate everything they possibly can, and are continuously searching for new areas to bring under their control.

    But allowing the state to claim that it should subsidize child care and schooling because it needs to make those things accessible to all is to commit to two very dangerous fallacies:

    The state will abide by any limits in its controls and regulations, i.e., only regulate the partial areas it is paying for instead of quickly moving to control all aspects of the subject in question;

    and, secondly, that the subsidies will improve the quality of the overall service being provided.

    In fact, the net result of the state subsidizing and then controlling child care and the schools is to provide a poor to mediocre product/service to the poor who were the stalking horses for the original claim of need, a deterriorating product/service to the middle class who end up paying more in taxes and fees for the debasement of vital services that they and their children really do need to get ahead later in life, and the wealthy and/or well connected opt out of the whole mess by hiring nannies and sending their kids to exclusive private schools.

    State interference does not open doors by leveling the playing field, as the statist often claims it does, but acts to freeze people along class lines and protect the advantages of the already advantaged.

    The totalitarian states we have seen in the last century may have been ravenous tigers towards their own people, and any they gained sway over, but the officious little prisses of the bureaucratic corporate states being constructed in the US and Britain are like termites in a formerly sound, well built house.

    They chew and chew, and propagate relentlessly, until the structure begins to sag, and then collapses.

    If questioned, of course, they are unable to comprehend their responsibility for what has occurred because, after all, they were only doing it for the children, and their intentions were so very noble.

    And then they will go right back out and try to do it all over again, as if none of the failures of the past ever happened. It was always someone else’s fault, and this time they will get it right

    Such is the impenetrable self-delusion of the vanguard.

  • Verity

    I don’t want a Tory victory under any circumstances. The even worse – the self-described “heir to Blair”, pink Tory, liberal concensus David Cameron cannot be allowed a toehold in our government or our Constitution. He is as greedy for a seat at the top table in Brussels as is Tony Blair, and his ideas mesh with Blair’s, although Cameron is not yet on the US lecture circuit or the Arab cultural cringing circuit … but it will come, it will come if the Tories win this round.

    David Cameron’s background is that of a pr man – not politics; not government, not public life – not anything, really, and he is trying to run a belief system, the Conservative Party, like a product instead of a … well, a believe system.

    He comes across to me as a nasty, greedy, self-entitled little shit. And I do not want my country under his governance.

    Pink, liberal concensus, Tories will not work.

    Well, it may work for the perps top-table-in-Brusselswise, but not for Great Britain.

  • Verity

    Very Retired, I concur with every word except “self-deluded”. They’re not. They know what they’re essaying. Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World.

  • veryretired

    Verity, I understand what you mean, but I think you underestimate the overwhelming power of faith.

    It is not surprising that the two most dangerous enemies free people face are both disciples of faith based systems—the theocracy of the islamists and the secular collectivist nirvana of the true believers.

    Nothing that happens in the real world can penetrate the wall that their faiths have constructed between their minds and reality.

    People on the outside always seem so dumbfounded when they observe the petty stupidities, like this childcare deal, and how the lunacy progresses, spiralling into the total madness of “The Lost City” or The Darkness at Noon”.

    How does it happen? The faith of the true believers requires the total loss of the self, the absolute conviction that the end being sought justifies any means.

    If some clerk is unconcerned with prosecuting two mothers who trade watching each other’s kids so they can work, earn their daily bread, and raise their families with dignity, what further callousness is possible next year? In ten years?

    Do these creepy little roaches know what they are and what they’re doing? Yes, somewhere inside, hidden behind every wall they can build, bureied as deep as they can bury it.

    They know the protrait that is hidden in the attic, and they will do anything to avoid looking at it, and having to admit to themselves what it truly means about their lives.

    The delusion is—if they don’t open the door and go up the stairs, the attic doesn’t really exist, and there’s nothing up there to see.

    I’d mix a few more metaphores, but it’s late, and I’m going to bed. G’nite.

  • Nuke Gray

    Why not have the press ‘discover’ that the two ladies ARE lesbians? Or plant it as an item of gossip?

  • Verity

    Why should those two mothers have to have a record of pretend lesbianism for their children to discover later, on the internet? What an absolutely stupid “solution”. Maybe we could put it about that you only came up with it because you are a closet gay and your children don’t know … yet.

    Why not fight what it is? Fascism.

    Rather than these two ladies, who came to an arrangement to care for one another’s offspring (and they clearly trusted one another with their precious children) than they accommodate other people’s lunacy. Why should anyone bend to accommodate someone else’s raging fantasies?

    These are two perfectly normal mothers, working shifts, who trust each other to care for their children.

    Is there any way, now that Mary Travers has checked out … maybe a Bruce Springsteen concert? Sting? – would anyone go? Anyone? … where we can get several thousand lefties in one place and … well, contain them nicely?

  • Paul Marks

    No! No! No! – the mothers must put their children into government approved day care centres.

    Like the one in which it turns out (in the court case this week) they were being used for child pornography.