Sunday, September 03, 2006

Sunday AM

I just watched Hilary Armstrong interviewed by Andrew Marr on Sunday AM. She might have made some sense were she still a "community worker" in Sunderland, but she made none for a Government Minister. To be honest, she didn't seem to see the jobs as different.

Her confidence in the Government's ability to micro-manage individual citizens' lives was creepy. Given that she was talking about teams of social workers per problem parent, the plans seemed to imply massive increases in the State payroll, or at least in State subsidy of the "voluntary sector".

To add to all the housing and policing costs caused by our pampering of the chavs, it seems we are now going to provide each with a personal assistant social worker. Even free use of the lowest grade busybody with a 2:2 in Sociology will cost as much as providing them with a valet. Why not, I suppose? Their stays in jail cost as much as sending them to Eton.

The pathetic Marr, who has proved to be an even softer interviewer than the odious David Frost, gave her the Bolshevik Broadcasting Corporation's characteristically easy ride.

The subject was the policy jocularly referred to as "FASBO" (Anti-Social Behaviour Orders for Foetuses). The Government, having made us all feel like surly teenagers by constant meddling in our lives, has decided to work on our indoctrination from birth. The plan is to identify "at risk" children even in the womb and then swamp them with Government intervention.

I can hardly believe that even this shower of cretins could conceive a plan so calculated to create a race of institutionalised, state-dependent ****wits. This simplistic social determinism is an insult to everyone from a poor background who went on to be a good citizen. It will ensure that the numbers achieving such routine feats will decline. The only consistent thread (apart from contempt for individual freedom) that I can find in Labour's policies is that they are designed to prevent working class individuals from "getting on" in life.

Perhaps Labour really understands that it is the "Losers' Party" and wants to ensure as many future losers as possible?

PS: If you follow the link to her Government bio, you will see that, like Polly Toynbee, Armstrong has adopted the Stalinist habit of editing her past. Born in 1945, there is no way the school she attended could have been a "comprehensive." A moment's googling has revealed that it was, of course a grammar school at the time. But then why would we expect those who tell big lies to respect small truths?

BBC NEWS | Programmes | Sunday AM


Thomas Fuller said...

Perhaps Labour really understands that it is the "Losers' Party" and wants to ensure as many future losers as possible?

It has known this for many years: hence the advent of comprehensive schooling. The result is a generation of people who neither know nor care what is being done to them; and even if they did, they're so badly educated that they couldn't do a damned thing about it.

dearieme said...

Your excellent investigation may be based on a false premise: I was born in '46 and went to a Comprehensive.

Tom Paine said...

I am glad I checked on Armstrong's school before commenting then! But I don't understand. I understood (because our Labour LEA claimed so with pride) that the Comprehensive I went to (converted from a Secondary Modern the year before and with largely the same staff) was one of the first - and I was born in 1957. Where was your pioneering Comp?

dearieme said...

Scotland: in a burgh too small to support two schools. (Mind you, to get my daughter a schooling that was anywhere near as good, I had to fork out for a private school. And a family of Scots socialist neighbours has done just the same.)

Tom Paine said...

That's not quite the same as the ideology-driven bog standard comps now is it? Our experience in those (three of them between us as pupils, hard to say which was worst, four of them for my wife as a teacher, ditto) was enough to convince us not to have children until we were sure that we could educate them privately.

dearieme said...

Quite. A few years after we left the Academy, the Rector retired and the new man was ideology-driven. His first act was to write to the local families who funded the school prizes, and tell them to keep their money - "so divisive, prizes". Can you imagine - in rural Scotland, an anti-education school Principal. The school is now just a bog-standard comp: its good days lasted about a decade. Saved my father a few bob, though, because otherwise he proposed to ruin himself by having three of us go off to board. So my family's flirtation with state education lasted one generation. Fucking socialists, eh?

JohnM said...

The policy of Comprehensives was adopted when Labour won the 1964 election. However, various LEAs had already experimented with comprehensives at an earlier date.

Wikipedia states the first as being at Holyhead in 1954