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That Which Shall Not Be Named

It waits. It hungers. In its tenebrous embrace all memories, all identities, all names are lost. What was once known becomes unknown.

And a jolly good thing too, that’s what I say.

The Scottish government’s creepy Named Person Scheme has been fed to Azathoth, the BBC reports.

An earlier post of mine called “Sixty pages” described one father’s experience of the pilot scheme:

The surviving extracts appeared to indicate that the minutiae of his family life had been recorded in painstaking detail for almost two years, under a Named Person scheme which has been introduced in his part of the country ahead of its final roll-out across all of Scotland in August. A separate note made by the Named Person charged with keeping an eye on the academic’s two little boys was concerned with nappy rash.

Rob Fisher also wrote about it here: What the GIRFEC?

19 comments to That Which Shall Not Be Named

  • Living in Perth (the original Scottish one, not the warmer, antipodean one), I’ve found the local Scots to be friendly and amenable, have some interesting views on both sides of the Independence debate and are genuinely intelligent, decent people. Quite why they have let that translate to electing a government of illiberal busybodies I’ve never understood.

    Glad the Named Person Scheme is dead though. Needs to be staked through the heart and it’s head cut off to stop it being resurrected.

  • pete

    The Scottish people voted for their new layer of government in the new parliament building, plus its army of new bureaucrats.

    If you ask for more government you can hardly complain about more government interference in your life.

  • Gavin Longmuir

    There is a hypothesis that no government program ever dies — it simply gets bigger and bigger. Without knowing anything about this particular program, someone somewhere deserves great credit for:
    (a) running a limited trial before rolling the program out to the whole country, and
    (b) taking the results of that trial seriously enough to kill a government program.

    Carry On!

  • Bruce

    “Needs to be staked through the heart and it’s head cut off to stop it being resurrected.”

    And, for the vermin who proposed, drafted, enacted and enforced it?

  • Mr Ecks

    Very glad that piece of marxist SNP shite is dead.

    Those who thought it up still need to be punished tho’.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Absolutely abominable idea. So the Scottish children were to grow up under the watchful eyes and tender care of an equal (but surely it will grow…) number of Dolores Umbridges?

    That would be one heckuva lot worse than being denied the rights of Englishmen. (Would the right to bring up your kid unspied-upon by the Gov have been one of those rights?) Anyone who would vote for anyone who would vote for such a measure ought to be drawn & quartered, tarred & feathered, and run out of town on a rail — straight to the Warm Place.

    It would demand a genuine Scottish Revolution.

    (I was already aghast when I learned that some European countries require that the names of babies be deemed acceptable by their governments.)

  • Paul Marks

    Scots law used, in some ways, to be superior to English law – but since “devolution” Scots law (like Scots education) has been under sustained attack from the “Progressive” forces that control the “Scottish Parliament”.

    “Devolution” has been a disaster in Scotland – but no one is allowed to say so, due to the “ideological hegemony” of the “Progressive” forces.

    Do not mistake me – the position, in terms of the climate of ideas, in England and Wales is bad (very bad) – but in Scotland it is worse.

    I will try and answer John Galt’s question as to why the friendly, hardworking and intelligent Scots should elect such a Parliament (and so on) – I think the answer is that Scots tend to take ideas seriously (more seriously than most English people do), now that is very good thing when the ideas are good ones (whether it be in science of politics), but it is a very bad thing when the ideas (the theories) are bad ones.

    In the modern world the sort of political ideas taught in schools and universities and pushed in the media are bad (very bad) – the “typical Englishman” nods (half asleep) at the insane ravings (“Social Reform” “Social Justice” “Progressive change”….) pushed by the teachers, university lecturers, and media types. But the “typical Scot” takes ideas seriously – he (or she) is taught that X is a good thing to do, so they try and do X. This leads to disaster in politics – as the political ideas taught (around the world now) tend to be both evil and insane. This is why good people vote for terrible ideas – because they take ideas seriously and the only political ideas they are taught are terrible ones.

    By the way, I do not actually like the “typical English” approach – as not taking ideas seriously does not mean those ideas do not come to be policy – it just slows down the process, liberty in England is in decline (make no mistake about that), liberty has (generally) been in decline for 150 years.

    Indeed it might actually, perhaps, be less difficult to reverse the decline of liberty in Scotland than in England – if the Scots could be interested in ideas that are actually true. As Scots tend to take ideas seriously they might put good ideas into practice (if only they had good ideas presented to them), I doubt that we in England would do so – as the indifference to ideas is a real barrier to reversing the general decline of liberty (we tend to “go with the flow” here – and the “flow” is not in a good direction).

  • Paul Marks

    I certainly do NOT believe that the David Hume style defence of political liberty (Mr Hume did not believe in philosophical liberty, human agency – the existence of human BEINGS, so he did not defend it) – the “this is just the way we do things round here” “tradition” defence – ironically Mr Hume was a Scot, but this “this is just the way we do things round here” style of thinking is more “English” and it is very vulnerable to the collectivist pointing to POVERTY (or some other horrible thing) and saying “well the way do things round here is not working very well – we had better change it”.

    The “traditionalist” always, in the end, loses to the Collectivist “Social Reformer” because “this is just the way we do things round here” is a terrible argument – indeed it is not really an argument at all.

    Unless someone can explain why liberty is better than “Social Reform”, explain why “Social Reform” collectivism will make things WORSE than they otherwise would be – the “Social Justice” collectivists will always, in the end, win and civilisation will be destroyed (and vast suffering created).

    The difficulty is that some thinkers (even, sometimes, the late Ludwig Von Mises – although at other times he did not hold the following position) hold that ordinary people are-not-capable of understanding WHY liberty is a good idea – that the “common man” can not understand such things.

    This is the great divide between those philosophers (such as the Scots Thomas Reid or the English Harold Prichard the Scots “Common Sense” school or the English “Oxford Realists”) who hold that ordinary people can understand fundamental philosophical and political ideas – and people (such as Mr Hume) who hold that ordinary people can NOT understand these philosophical and political ideas.

    If people such as the late Mr Hume are correct then liberty is a “dead duck” – as we can be certain that the elite will not support liberty (why should they? after all the elite get to control everyone else under collectivism – whether the elite are employed in government or in “Woke” Big Business organisations joined-at-the-hip with government and led by people such as Senator Elizabeth Warren’s daughter) – so if ordinary people can not understand liberty liberty is doomed.

    I actually take the more positive view (the view of such thinkers as Thomas Reid and Harold Prichard) – that ordinary people, if things are explained in ordinary language (avoiding the “cant” that the intellectual elite tend to use), can understand basic (fundamental) ideas of philosophical and political liberty.

    “If I have failed to explain myself in a way that the person on the number nine bus passing this lecture hall can understand – that is MY failure, not their failure”.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Paul,

    As it happens I just finished hearing a discussion between Paul Rahe (Prof. at Hillsdale, maybe ret. by now?) and Peter Robinson on Uncommon Knowledge in 2011. Video entitled “Past Republics and the Constitution.” On the ancient Classical Republics at the first of the talk, and on the state of the U.S. in light of BHO to wind up; but in the middle there’s a lot of discussion about the state of knowledge of people in the 2nd half of the 18th Cent., and of the difference between a Republic, in which, properly speaking, the people are supposed to be governing themselves, and the Administrative State, in which the people are just too ignorant and it should all be done by Experts, cue the Progressives, Wilson, the Roosevelts, the then-present mess (which ours beats, except that the step from 2011 to 2017 at least, is to me rather small and predictable). Complete sea change in the general outlook, at least here, and over near Kettering too I think.

    39 min. at

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xubuE1LT9g

  • Duncan S

    Gavin Longmuir writes :

    Without knowing anything about this particular program, someone somewhere deserves great credit for:
    (a) running a limited trial before rolling the program out to the whole country, and
    (b) taking the results of that trial seriously enough to kill a government program.

    Gavin – No2NP are the people who deserve credit for getting this legislation repealed.

    The only reason that the SNP have had to repeal this legislation is because they could not find a way to make it legal. They couldn’t get around the pesky problem of “how to share personal information, including hearsay, about children or their families, without the child, or the child’s parents, being told about it”.

    The SNP “government” of Scotland were taken to court over this illegal data sharing, and were found to be breaking the laws on data protection.

  • Mr Ecks

    Scotland’s love of socialism is the root of all its problems.

  • Duncan S (September 21, 2019 at 8:47 am) is right. This is not a case of “oft evil will shall evil mar” but it is a case where something that the PC haven’t called evil – citizens having access to data on them – led to laws that then defeated their aim (that the state owned children not parents, so parents could be cut out of the information loop).

  • Runcie Balspune

    But the panel was unable to write a workable code of practice on information sharing, and concluded that doing so “would not be desirable” as the complexity would make it difficult to understand or apply in practice.

    ctrl-left freaks find out it is really difficult to micromanage other people, probably best to leave them to their own devices?

  • bobby b

    “They couldn’t get around the pesky problem of “how to share personal information, including hearsay, about children or their families, without the child, or the child’s parents, being told about it”.”

    Back when my kids were at the “Dad takes them to the doctor” stage, we were at the beginnings of the same program here in the USA. Doctors were the Named Persons. Doctors were the spies the state sent in to make sure our kids were “safe” and woke and properly aimed.

    I took Eldest Son in for a snowboarding injury one day, and, for the first time, the doc suggested that I stay in the waiting room. (Son was 12, so, okay. Maybe it’ll be good for him.)

    Their visit lasts for some time. As I wait, a woman comes out and sits down with me and introduces herself as a social worker of some kind, and indicates that Son has told Doc that I have guns in the house, and could we discuss this?

    I ask, did Son volunteer this info? No, Doc has a list, and asked about guns, and smoking, and drinking, and bedtimes, and homework, and . . . it was a long list.

    That visit didn’t end well. Apparently, it didn’t end well for many other parents that month, either. The clinic re-evaluated, and the program went away quickly. (Or at least it did for us problem parents.) The clinic lost about a third of its patients, had financial difficulties, and laid off several docs and the social worker, so it all did eventually have a happy ending.

    But, damn.

    (One gratifying point: when Doc attempted to lecture Son about evil guns, son pointed out that he had hit more pheasants than I on our last trip.)

  • TomJ

    However, using kids as political pawns is still a thing in Scotland.

    I leave drawing parallels with the climate nonsense disfiguring our streets yesterday as an exercise for the student.

  • NickM

    bobby,

    Google “Middlesborough child abuse scandal”.

    At least they didn’t give your kid a totally un-needed rectal exam and then on the basis of a completely invented “theory” decide you were buggering him with all the legals that follow in that train.

    The two “doctors” were not even struck-off.

  • Itellyounothing

    And how much did this latest rancid socialist failure cost?

    A question nobody answers in case it’s used to challenge the introduction of the next epic clusterfuck.

  • That visit didn’t end well. Apparently, it didn’t end well for many other parents that month, either. The clinic re-evaluated, and the program went away quickly. (Or at least it did for us problem parents.) The clinic lost about a third of its patients, had financial difficulties, and laid off several docs and the social worker, so it all did eventually have a happy ending.

    Which is another reason that the Democrats want to turn healthcare into a socialised approach, because everyday totalitarianism doesn’t work if Joe Public can just walk away from his inquisitor and get somebody else to look at little Jimmy’s broken arm.

  • Rob

    Alas, they didn’t end it because it is an atrocious, totalitarian idea, but because of the complexity of handling and exchanging the data. They still think it is a fine idea. They still want to monitor every move you make, they just can’t quite manage it technically yet.

    There isn’t much to celebrate here.

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