Monday, March 19, 2012

The bastardisation of Nanny State

'Nanny State' describes the intervention of the state in people's private lives and property. But there is a growing tendency for Labour and the Greens to accuse National of  Nanny Statism. They did it over welfare reform, and here is another example from Annette King today complaining about central government attempting to rein in local government:

“This is Nanny state. It is central Government stepping very heavily on the toes of local communities..."

Balderdash. Local government increasingly embodies Nanny State with its suffocating property  rules and regulations, and now,  tasked with the power of general competence under Labour, sticking its nose into areas previously the domain of central government.

But we shouldn't be surprised that Labour conveniently misunderstands what Nanny State means. Sloppy definitions are vital to politicians and the pursuit or retention of power.

1 comment:

Mark Hubbard said...

Yes. The local government reforms today definitely a step in the right direction.

More importantly, to quote the major section of this reform:

The Local Government Act 2002 will be amended to replace references to the ‘social, economic, environmental and cultural well-being of communities’ (the four well beings) with a new purpose for councils of ‘providing good quality local infrastructure, public services and regulatory functions at the least possible cost to households and business.’

Now let's apply that to central government as well, and we might finally move to the only proper role of government.