Ex-smackhead Mark Johnson notices something about social workers.
"They said I was a product of my environment and upbringing. That made me feel it wasn't my fault, so the last person that I looked at was me and that's the first place I needed to look."
As the Wicked Uncle put it forty-five years ago :
To give them the idea when they get here that they're important, their only trouble is they're misunderstood, they need sympathy: well to me, quite frankly that just seems ridiculous. They get more attention paid to them here, more mollycoddling, more listening-to than they’ve ever had in their whole lives outside. It makes them feel, it can't help it, that they're not really bad people at all; it's everyone else outside who's wrong, not them.
Mr Johnson seems to have them taped.
The social workers at the first rehab he chose to attend in preference to staying in prison, are described as "kind-hearted but misguided".
"They have tried hard to persuade us to change but as far as I know, they haven't succeeded with any of us," he writes. "Social workers are so far behind," he adds. "Our whole society has changed."
Damn right it has. And most of the change was cheered on, if not actually engineered, by Guardianistas.
He points to the collapse of apprenticeships. "On the outside it was about employment. But it was really about an older man showing a younger bloke how to live; how to get up at 7am and to emotionally correct his behaviour. That's gone and we're dealing with the wreckage."
It's not just the industry that's gone - in the welfare age the need to work - and all that went with it - the learning, the cameraderie, the role model - has gone for many. To repeat: In ancient days (the Golden Age that never was) the disciplines of work and marriage subdued man's natural tendencies to naughtiness of all kinds. No work meant no food - and perhaps more important for socialisation, no respect from your peers.
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