Saturday, August 20, 2011


Real Cause of Social Unrest To Be Found In Early Stage Development

Rightwing columnists have had a field day during the riots. Melanie Phillips opines, that 'most of the' rioters were products of single mother parents. Max Hastings that 'they are essentially wild beasts' while the tender hearted Richard Littlejohn wanted to know why the police were not 'clubbing these looters like baby seals.' I agree the looters shamed the nation but I think these columnists shamed it just as much. Closer to the truth and the key area of concern was Anushka Asthana in The Times yesterday.

Her view is that we are likely to suffer riots every decade or so as the children of former rioters hit the streets; its a 'cycle of deprivation and dysfunction.' And so much of it begins when the mind is not fully sentient but when the human state is just a mass of feelings and impressions. Even after 22 months the life chances of deprived children begin to decline compared with middle class ones whose toddlers are exposed to four times the number of words as their poorer counterparts. Professor Melhuish of Birkbeck College reports that whether or not parents spend time with their babies or not- reading stories, singing songs- has a 'huge impact on their adult lives'.

Ashtana reports on programmes piloted in Washington involving early stage intervention which have saved huge expenditure in likely costs later on. The return on such programmes as Sure Start and Family Nurse Partnerships in Nottingham (providing one on one intensive support for single mothers from the moment they become pregnant) is startlingly cost-effective. Local MP Graham Allen claims the latter city spent £700,000 on FNP services to 250 mothers, the same cost as placing three 16 year olds in a secure unit for a year.

Treating the symptoms when outbreaks of disorder occur is not substitute for aiming at the causes. That has always been the difference between right and left approaches to social policy and, despite the Lib Dems presence in government, I have no confidence this basically right-wing outfit will do anything different.

So, single mothers are a product of the Reagan-Thatcher regimes in my opinion. Single mothers must work, they don't have funds to pay someone else to raise their children, so the streets handle the job. Besides, children grow up watching the adults and mimic them in every aspect. Politicians are certainly not wonderful role models. There are also different laws for "the haves" and "the have nots". Why does a wealthy person have the right to steal from the taxpayers without jail time? You think kids don't see this???

I note that the UK is preparing to host another Olympics Games to the tune of an estimated £9bn and at the same time cutting benefits for common folks??? You think kids don't see this???
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