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, November 18, 2008

Prat of The Week - Bob Walmsley

Prat of The WeekGosh I feel the urge to award another "Prat of The Week" Award, only 24 hours after awarding the last one.

What can have so stirred me to make such an award?

Why none other than good old Auntie (the BBC), in the shape of Bob Walmsley of BBC Radio Northampton.

BBC Board Meeting

Walmsley, who hosts the station's consumer affairs programme, decided to abandon journalistic principles; and publicly air his petty minded prejudices on air last week, when he interviewed Forest spokesman Neil Rafferty about Redbridge Council's pathetic decision to ban smokers from fostering.

Walmsley compared placing a child with foster parents who smoke, to placing a child with alcoholics. He also stated that smokers were unfit parents.

Good old Auntie, showing her impartiality as ever!

Walmsley has now been forced to eat crow and now apologise:

"I gave an opinion comparing alcoholics to smokers. This was an unfair comparison to make and if this has caused offence I am genuinely sorry about that. It was not my intention."

So that's alright then?

Walmsley, well deserving Prat of The Week.

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  1. Anonymous12:56 PM

    Not intending to cause offence? What did he think smokers' reactions were likely to be?

    "Fair enough, squire. Sounds pretty reasonable to me." ?

  2. Anonymous4:24 PM

    Now that Nanny has programmed society to articulate disapproval of racism, homophobia, sexism, ageism and climate change scepticism, and until she completes her programme of propaganda aimed at the obese and binge drinkers, she has kindly provided smokers as fodder. It is now de rigueur to lambast smokers. The Guardian-reading, champagne-socialist inhabitants of Islington, who have swallowed the myth of the dangers of ETS, would be terribly embarrassed if only they realised how ignorant and gullible they are to have done so.

    In the media, it now seems to be acceptable to listeners that smokers are slandered whereas those who criticise anti-smokers provoke complaint.

    Forest reported the apology forced out of Bob Walmsley and was accused of boasting by Roy Greenslade of the Guardian who took the view that an apology was unnecessary. God knows what The Sun thinks.

    This Government has gone way, way beyond acceptable limits in its treatment of smokers. Smokers, like myself, who have taken an active interest in the issue of passive smoking, have warned of the consequences of demonising us. We now see those consequences, with people being discriminated against solely on the grounds of their use of a product, as well as being objects of verbal and sometimes physical abuse. I consider it every bit as despicable and inexcusable as I do any other form of bigotry.

    Thank you, Ken, for having the decency to recognise this.


  3. How dare he compare us alcoholics to smokers! The very idea!

    Quitting smoking is easy, I do it more than fifteen times a day.

  4. Anonymous10:41 AM

    I am not a smoker myself, and have little time for Forest, but my late father, who passed away in 1968 about 6 weeks before his 64th birthday was a smoker, and if anyone is suggesting he wasn't a fit parent, they are asking for a knuckle sandwich! Having said that, however, our knowlege of the harmful effects of smoking has greatly increased in the last 40 years, and I do not believe that parents who choose to smoke should inflict the fumes upon their children.

  5. Anonymous11:22 PM

    L of A said,

    ".... and I do not believe that parents who choose to smoke should inflict the fumes upon their children."

    Or vice versa ....

    Interestingly although my father occasionally smoked a pipe, though this became a very rare event and had stopped well before I reached an age where I might have been tempted to light my own, and my mother smoked cigarettes (stopping instantly in the middle of a duty-free when the BBC broadcast the confirmation of a link with lung cancer) but converted to an anti-smoking zealot, neither of their action influenced me towards smoking.

    On the other hand the kids at school certainly did and after a few half hearted starts I became a regular smoker in my late teens, continuing for most of the next 25 or so years. That said for the last 10 of those years once my wife had given up and the kids had arrived I mostly smoked at work and when travelling on business. Rarely at home, certainly not in the home.

    I don't think that decision was taken for reasons of health particularly - it was more to do with smell and the need for re-decoration.

    In the end I gave up on the basis of wealth rather than health. My years of business travel and duty-free supplies had drifted to a stop and the cost of the habit, duty paid, just seemed too much to justify. So I stopped.

    I certainly don't buy into the SHS scare based on any evidence presented so far and the SIFs have tried very hard to make something of it so I would think that normal exposure to cigarette smoke is unlikely to be worse, for a typical child, than exposure to, say, pets or school food.

  6. Anonymous11:28 PM

    LOA, I'm not sure whether you were referring to research on active or passive smoking. Although you're right in that a great deal of research into the effects of ETS has been done, none of the research is in the least compelling. The methodology is shoddy, the results insignificant within the parameters of the methodology used and the interpretation of the results is - how do I say this diplomatically - economical with the truth. This applies to all the studies. There's even one - which they tried to bury - which shows that smoking protects children's health!!

    Tobacco control is not a health issue; it is an industry, rife with vested interest (in its upper echelons) and personal prejudice (in its lower echelons) masquerading as altruism. The rest just don't like the smell and object to coming home from the pub 'reeking of smoke' and can't grasp the fundamental point that society can only function if there is tolerance of the personal preferences of others. Hell, our society is becoming so self-obsessed and egotistical that there might now be a generation which doesn't understand the concept of personal preferences.

    I know that you're not alone in your opinion of Forest. They report on their site that they sent a mail shot of 18,000 letters to Councillors. One wrote back, "I hope you die of cancer". This from a so-called worthy of the local community. I have no problem with them. They don't promote smoking, they don't lie about smoking, they don't champion the rights of smokers at the expense of non-smokers - they serve merely to promote the quaint idea that, as consumers of a legal product, smokers have every right to be represented and treated fairly and reasonably. Quite frankly, I thank God for people who are prepared to publicly challenge the current hysteria which has been cynically constructed by the tobacco control lobby and colluded in by the Government and LAs.


  7. Anonymous12:30 PM

    "and I do not believe that parents who choose to smoke should inflict the fumes upon their children."

    However, a study by WHO over a period of 17 years showed that children of regular smokers had a 26% (yes, you read that right) less chance of contracting a smoking related disease and/or asthma.

    Of course, this report was buried pretty quickly as you can imagine - it really doesn't fit in with the demonized smoker image.

    Many people are so brainwashed about smoking that they cannot see the obviousness of the WHO report.

    As an immune system is building it is learning all the time. Introduce a harmful chemical to it at this stage and it will learn to deal with it and build up an immunity.

    It works with nearly all other chemicals and threats to an immune system, yet because of government propaganda that apparently the immune system listens to, it won't build a tolerance to smoking.

    Of course it will, and seemingly does.

    Smoking was the easiest to demonize as Bliar and Broon already had half the population on side - then the steady slide into alcohol, followed by 'fatty' foods (or seemingly any foods that nanny deems not 'good for us'), then where - well, I think you already know.