Nanny Knows Best

Nanny Knows Best
Dedicated to exposing, and resisting, the all pervasive nanny state that is corroding the way of life and the freedom of the people of Britain.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Nanny Bans Open Air Smoking

Nanny Bans Open Air SmokingOh dear oh dear, Nanny really is fixated with smoking. Not content with banning it inside public buildings, and trying to prevent firemen from entering the homes of smokers, Nanny is now trying to ban smoking in the open air as well.

Nanny's chums in Sutton council want to introduce a smoking ban in children's open air play areas.

Why do we need local councils?

Needless to say councillor Bruce Glithero, the person leading the hysterical calls for an open air ban, belongs to the party with a name that is a contradiction in terms...Liberal Democrat.

Isn't it funny how the Liberal Democrat party is always at the vanguard of calls for restrictions on people's liberties?

Why don't they change their name to something that actually reflects their true political leanings, eg The League of Interfering Fascists?

Anyhoo, Glithero said:

"As the father of four daughters we often like to go to the park, but recently I was sitting at the side of the sandpit when I turned around to see one of my four-year-old twins spluttering.

At first I thought she had swallowed some sand, but then I realised she was coughing because smoke from a woman sitting nearby was blowing directly into her face. It seemed so unfair.

The main reason people go to the park is to enjoy some fresh air, and this move aims to protect that

What a prat!

There is ample fresh air for everyone and life, by the way, is unfair; so stop whinging!

The council has approved Glithero's plans, and the scheme will be trialled at Beddington Park.

Needless to say, the sign printing industry will be doing very nicely out of this. Signs will be erected (can I say erected?) informing smokers of the new rules, which will be enforced by Safer Neighbourhood Teams.

Safer Neighbourhood Teams?

Has anyone ever heard of these people?

Who are they, what do they do and are taxpayers paying for them?

Now, here is where this scheme of Glithero falls apart.

Can you guess what the fundamental problem is with his scheme?

Yes, that's right, it's not be legally enforceable.

The council clearly is inhabited by a complete bunch of tossers, how do you enforce a non legally enforceable rule?

Seemingly Glithero expects the public to co-operate.

The costs of the signs for this unenforceable rule run to £860. This money could have been spent on improving the playground facilities for the kids.

This not the first time that Sutton council has done something stupid. In 2006 Sutton councillors tried to stop people smoking in their own homes.

Under the proposal, council tenants would not have been allowed to smoke while being visited by health workers and staff such as those delivering meals on wheels. Needless to say the scheme was deemed to be bollocks by people who live in the real world, and had to be withdrawn in the face of fierce opposition.

Funny how the phrase Liberal Democrat is such a contradcition in terms.

The trouble with Liberal Democrats and indeed local councils is that common sense, and practicalities are irrelevant to them.

As I often ask on this site; what is the farking point, use or value of local councils (or for that matter Liberal Democrats)?

With regard to the absurd scheme of Sutton council, I suggest that a bevy of smokers descend upon the park and light up; let's see what happens then.


  1. grumpy10:09 AM

    it was only ever going to be a matter of time before some fascist (read LibDem) thought up such a super scheme. They will not be thwarted so easily; what's the betting that - right now - some little pen-pushing tosser is - at public expense - trying to find a legal basis for the ban?

  2. I would imagine that if the local Nanny made a byelaw then they could legally enforce it.
    What worries me more is the likelyhood that mothers present will try to enforce this issue on child protection grounds....It is amazing how normally sensible parents can loose all rationale when their kids are involved.
    This could well end in fighting amongst the parents if one wants to smoke and another wants to "protect" their kid from the evil of smoking.

  3. Dixon of Dock Green1:43 PM

    Sadly it is only a matter of time before smoking parents fall into the category of child abusers. There is no end to this madness. The Sutton councillor concerned has let personal experience, prejudice and vested interest influence his public duty and has been allowed to get away with it. This is increasingly the case (viz. Liverpool) where rather than properly representing ALL their constituents, councillors are aggrandizing political power on behalf of minorities, often over matters that represent a conflict of interest and should be left well alone.

    I have always been amused by the creeping seizure of PUBLIC parks, roads, footpaths and common land by councils and actually believe the imposition of these bye-laws on ancient common land could be opposed legally. Who gave councils the right to charge a free Englishman for the right to park his car on a PUBLIC roadway? Is it not his roadway as much as theirs? By imposing and enforcing parking restrictions and fees it has always struck me that they are restricting access, exercising private ownership and therefore acting quite illegally. I wonder what would happen if next time one of Nanny's minions walks along my garden path to my front door I charged him or her for the privilege?

  4. Sadly it is only a matter of time before smoking parents fall into the category of child abusers.

    In America and Canada that's already being tossed around. There's even been a television commercial where you hear a child crying and screaming in such pain. The child's cries were so horrendous I had flashbacks to my own childhood. And then the camera pans around to a father and child sitting quietly in the living room watching cartoons and the father is smoking.

    "Second-hand smoke is damaging to a child's health and is tantamount to child abuse..." In cases of abuse, child-welfare authorities remove children from the home, but the Canadian Lung Association would not say if that is appropriate. - "Parents abuse children by smoking group says" - The Globe and Mail, Tuesday, January 21, 2003

    As you can see, this has been tossed around for years. Banning smoking in cars with children under 18 is only the first step...and many places over here have banned it.

  5. The guy isn't just a prat.
    He's probably a LIAR too.

  6. Anonymous10:05 PM

    Re: "In America and Canada that's already being tossed around."

    Jales, that's worrying.

    I'm of the opinion that the sort of PC madness being propagated in the UK (and getting worse by the day) is not sustainable. Eventually, something will have to give. However, I've always thought, there's nothing to worry about, as soon as the threshold is crossed where life becomes unbearable, I'll just emigrate - probably to the USA or Australia (that beach webcam in Perth looks very attractive). However, if people are trying to spread this kind of madness in other countries too then things start to become a little bit scary.

  7. Yes, here in the USA things are not much better. In fact, at least one town has an ordnance that pits you against the law if smoke drifts out your window and crosses into another property.

    Smoke is objectionable, especially to the 70-80 per cent who do not smoke: as a smoker, I ty to remain aware of this and if possible move so as to keep my smoke from aggrieving others. But I do get tired of those who want me to stop even if they are upwind, or worse in my own home. Nor does it help to point out to them that fifty years after establishing smoking [and chewing] health links, I am aware of only one study that seems (early days, about six months old - and seems to have dropped out of sight, which may be indicative of problems) to establish second-hand/environmental smoke as more hazardous than an open meadow.

    OTOH, I hav heard of one open-air ban that seems to make some sense. But it has nothing to do with smoke. One Far Eastern city (Singapoer?) has outlawed smoking while walking - but allows it if you stand in place. The rationale is that you may not notice sparks landing on other people's clothing, or ash falling into a child's eyes.

  8. There are two reasons for smoking bans and health is not one of them, contrarty to what the antis claim.

    1. Quarantine/isolate the smoker.

    2. de-normalize smoking.

    Unfortunatley,the hospitality industry is caught in the cross-fire

  9. Bansmoking in cars..children
    I'm afraid that the proposal to ban smoking in cars occupied by children represents an
    unwarranted intrusion into the privacy and autonomy of parenthood. The autonomy to
    make one's own decision about risks to subject a child to is not to be interfered with lightly.
    It should only be done in cases where there is a substantial threat of severe harm
    to the child. Interfering with parental autonomy in a case where there is only minor
    risk involved is unwarranted.

    Let me explain what I mean by substantial threat of severe harm and minor risk.
    If an infant is riding in a car without a car seat, there is a substantial threat of severe harm should the car be involved in an accident. In fact, if the car is in any major accident, severe harm to the child is almost certain. Death is likely if the accident is severe. The connection between not being in the child restraint and suffering severe injury or death in an accident is direct, immediate, and definitive.

    On the other hand, exposure to secondhand smoke in a car in most cases merely poses an increased risk of upper respiratory or middle ear infection. The likelihood, more often than not, is that the child will not suffer any harm. What is involved is only an elevation of risk for an ailment. There is no certainty of harm, nor is there any substantial threat of severe harm. The harm, if any occurs, is removed in time from the exposure and in most cases it is impossible to directly connect the exposure with the ailment. Thus, the connection is neither direct, immediate, nor definitive.

    This difference is not subtle. In fact, it is so stark that it serves as the basis for deciding when society should interfere with parental autonomy regarding exposure of their own children to health risks. Generally, causing harm to children or putting them at substantial risk of severe, direct, immediate, and definitive harm is viewed as something for which there is a legitimate government interest in interfering with parental autonomy. Simply placing children at an increased risk of more minor health effects is not something for which there is a legitimate government interest in interfering with parental autonomy.

    If we extended the argument of the supporters of this proposed legislation, then we would also have to support laws that regulate a wide range of parental activity that takes place in the private home which places children at increased risk of adverse health effects.

    We would have to ban parents from smoking in the home. We would have to ban parents from drinking more than a drink or two at a time in the home. We would have to ban parents from using insecticides and pesticides. We would have to ban parents from allowing their children out in the sun without sunscreen. We would have to ban parents from allowing their children to ride giant roller coasters. We would have to ban parents from serving their children foods that contain trans-fats. We would have to ban parents from serving their children peanuts before age 3. We would have to ban parents from allowing their children to drink soda that contains sodium benzoate and citric acid.

    And more:

    Allowing their infants to play with walkers;
    Allowing their children to watch more than four hours of television every day;
    Failing to ensure that their children get adequate physical activity;
    Owning a wood-burning stove;
    Failing to filter water that contains trihalomethanes;
    Not boiling their babies'’ bottles before serving them milk;
    Not breastfeeding their infants;
    Allowing their children to watch violent television programs;
    Allowing their children to watch R-rated movies;
    Serving alcohol at a party;
    Allowing their children to drink alcohol; and
    Failing to keep vitamins out of the reach of children.
    One could easily argue that 'If you love your children, [these are all things] you should learn not to do.' That may or may not be true, but what is clear is that we should not interfere with parental autonomy by banning all of these things.

    The question I find interesting is why a child advocate would single out smoking around one's children as the sole example of a situation in which the government interferes with the autonomy of a parent to make decisions regarding the exposure of her children to a health risk. What is it about smoking that, among all of the myriad above health risks to which parents often expose their children, it is the one and only one that is chosen to be regulated?

    I fear that the answer is that there is a moral stigma attached to smoking as opposed to these other risky parenting behaviors. And I also fear that it is the anti-smoking movement that has contributed to this moral stigma. What it ultimately comes down to, I'm afraid, is that the anti-smoking movement is starting to moralize. We are starting to try to dictate societal morals, rather than to stick to legitimate public health protection.

    It's a dangerous line that we're crossing. Because once that line is crossed, there's little assurance that the autonomy of parents to make decisions regarding raising their children can or will be adequately protected.

  10. Anonymous5:29 AM

    how long before this constitues child abuse?

  11. I have a buddy who is Australian, and the contamination is there. I thought of moving to Australia myself until she told me that. Now I read the Australian papers and's there. In fact, I've been hard pressed to find ANY country, even some considered 3rd world, that hasn't been contaminated by nanny-itis...and it always seems to start with smoking.

  12. Anonymous4:45 PM

    nanny state is right, but it seems to be a 'do as i say not as i do' nanny state because if my memory serves me right the government buildings are not smoke free. didnt our taxes pay for new air conditioned rooms so mp's could smoke inside. this proves to me what a bunch of total prats we have running this country.i pray for a time when the people that live in and pay for this county will be able to have a say in who runs it.