Where is Mary Poppins when you really need her? King of the non-sequitur and father of modern British mediocrity Tony ‘Blah Blah’ Blair today chose to reveal his latest foray into inflicting permanent damage on the national psyche in an exclusive statement to The Sun. That would be the august organ of fair play that still has pictures of topless bimbos in this age of respect and equality. Blah Blah is falling over himself to clear the too hard basket before his impending redundancy. He was in
‘Being a parent is hard and most of us have to just get on and do it. But there are some families who can’t cope with it. That’s a fact.
It doesn’t much matter whether it’s their ‘fault’ or not. The fact is when they don’t cope, the children suffer and then we all suffer.
Government can’t solve this problem on its own. But it can provide pressure and support. Pressure in making parents responsible for their child’s anti-social behaviour.'
There’s nothing like a considered, reasoned approach. How has this all come about? Well Blah Blah’s good pal over at the market research giant MORI, Ben Page made a couple of calls and discovered,
It’s also why the overwhelming majority of parents say they would welcome outside help in dealing with difficulties with their children.’
‘In these circumstances, a bit of nannying, with sticks and carrots, is what the local community needs, let alone the child. The cost to society of a child going off the rails can run into tens of thousands of pounds.
This should be no surprise given the huge popularity of television programmes in which experts help parents with their problem kids.
So today we are announcing new help for families with difficulties through a nationwide network of parenting experts.’
OK. Let’s take this calmly, one step at a time. The Government’s thinking is being informed by a television programme. Well, yes. There’s nothing unusual in that. Television is after all, a kind of universal focus group. But, and I’m sorry to nitpick when the Government is trying to help us to live properly, ‘a range of people’ might be stretching it just a tad. I did a little bit of maths because I know this is something the Government doesn’t much like doing.
Next thing they’ll be spending all their time at conferences commiserating with each other that they are being marginalised and not listened to and it’s the young people themselves that are really suffering. They needn’t worry too much about this. Young people are used to Government pratting around on their behalf and have got pretty good at ignoring it. Meanwhile the crusty old jobsworths will just have to bide their time and fight over who gets to inherit the newbie’s brand new computer which finally arrives six weeks before the end of their super experty little contract. Trust me, it will happen exactly like this.
Cartoon from The Guardian