I am not at all sure that I am happy to find myself agreeing with Miranda Devine’s comments in the Sydney Morning Herald of 22nd October 2009. Actually I am sure, I am not happy. Yet she has this to say:
‘The phrase nanny state is a cliche but that is because government intrusion in our lives is so pervasive we barely protest.’
‘The worst thing about nany statism is that even in the most resourceful person it induces a state of learned helplessness and complacency, in which, for instance, a mother no longer keeps alert to dangers in her child’s environment because she thinks ‘they’ will do it for her.’
I am always banging on about the value of people feeling they are, and actually being…in charge of their lives. Martin Seligman in his various books speaks of ‘learned helplessness.’ And I think there is a lot in all this.
I suspect Miranda and I really do have different views about almost everything. In this case, I think she is right.