Thursday, March 02, 2006

Children Need Fresh Fruit, Not Fathers

The BBC Today programme trumpets the call by Dame 'Suzi' Leather, newly appointed head of state-funded quango The School Food Trust (which the BBC describe as 'an independent body') for the banning of chocolate, crisps and fizzy drinks from vending machines, and the promotion of fruit and veg.

All very proper too. Pity Ms Leather doesn't include fathers in the list of things a child needs. More on this here, too.

The biography here shows a classic Seventies-educated Nu Lab quangocrat, teeth firmly clenched round the nipple of Mother State. I wonder if she has children - and I'm betting no.

UPDATE - wrong and wrong again - Ms Leather, whose name seems to have aroused an unhealthy degree of excitement in certain lewd commenters of the baser sort, has not only a small tribe of children, but a husband to boot - an academic in the Politics department of Exeter University.

The contracted first name Suzi, a sure Seventies giveaway ? More here.


JohnM said...

Suzi Leather???

Is that name real? Does she get requests for Devil Gate Drive and Can The Can?

Anonymous said...

Suzi Leather, the name gives me impure thoughts...

Anonymous said...

Fathers indeed should stick by their children, not scarper off at the first opportunity because they need their 'space' or whatever.

But what on earth has this got to do with a public body addressing the important issue of nutrition for children in schools?

Why not call on just about any other body with an interest in children's welfare to denounce deadbeat dads? How about Great Ormond Street hospital? The Scouts? Cycling Proficiency?

Anonymous said...

"I wonder if she has children - and I'm betting no."

"But Miss Leather cannot offer us any certainties on that one. Rather, says the 46-year-old mother of three, 'it's a gradual process, rather like the one where a woman gradually believes she is pregnant'."

Larry Teabag said...

Yes nice non-sequitor there Laban.

I thought it was going to go the other way though, and that you might surprise us with something about the terrible plight of Native Brits at the hands of self-hating white liberals.

Anonymous said...

I love the way Laban has put inverted commas round the first part of her name - 'Suzi' - like an elderly dowager picking up something distasteful with a pair of sugar tongs.

Anonymous said...

You may well mock, but the way she argued for the (eventually forced) removal of crisps and mars bars from school premises and their (eventually forced)replacement with squirrel and rabbit food was truly creepy.

Larry Teabag said...

You mean you love the way `Laban' has put inverted commas round the first part of her name.

Anonymous said...

Eamonn, I'm more struck by the truly creepy way you want to let schools off the hook for serving up unhealthy muck to growing minds and bodies.

Cruella said...

80% of the benefits of being raised in a two-parent family are explained financially. The last thing children need is for their mothers to be made to feel like they have to stay with men who may be beating and raping them for the benefit of their child. 25% of women in this country have been a victim of domestic violence. The benefits of not having a father around might impact both the kids and their mother...

Anonymous said...

How was the figure of 80% reached, Cruella?

My experience tells me that, all other things being equal, children do better when mum and dad are around, not just mum on her own.

Charles Martel said...

cruella -> i think your point has been contradicted many times by Trevor Philips, when he has on numerous occasions pointed out that young black deliquency is primarily down to the lack of father role models.
i.e. black men generally feck off if the woman is pregnant.

and that wasnt me who said that - it was Trevor Philips, head of the race equality quango.

Charles Martel said...

"teeth firmly clenched round the nipple of Mother State"

and her name is Suzi Leather.

oh dear, i'm having impure thoughts.

Anonymous said...

And I'd be obliged to see a source for the 25% figure.

I seem to recall a figure being banded around university alleging that of "25% of university women have been raped". On examination it transpired that this was based upon returns to a survey wherein 25% of women reported regretting having sex the day after.

It would be interesting to learn what criterion were used for domestic violence. I recall my wife throwing a plate across the room at my head and it shattering on the wall. It was followed by a knife. Whilst this certainly would qualify as domestic violence, we both look back on the incident with amusement. Should we have split up?

It would be interesting to learn if that 25% of women thought they would be better off single?

James G. said...

As a former scrote juvenile delinquent who hung out with other juvenile delinquents, I can personally attest that out of all the juvenile delinquents I knew, the only ones who got into real trouble (i.e. prison sentences roundabout the age of 17/18, drugdealing, etc.) were those who had no father around.

I know it's anecdotal, but the truth is all children need men around. Women cannot raise boys to become men.

And I would like to know the provenance of 25%. Although the way it is acceptable to sleep with losers and then bear their children without further contact, I wouldn't be surprised if it is the same 5% of men doing the beating and raping. (Ian Huntley went through a string of underage girls himself before being banged up.)

It is just because people are unwilling to judge nowadays that violence is being visited upon more women and children.

Laban said...


a) that 25% figure comes, believe it or not, from a study of women attending a GP surgery in a poor area of North London. It's gained 'everybody knows' status.

b) a woman in a sexual relationship is least likely to be the victim of domestic violence in a marriage.

c) even after controlling for income, fatherless children do worse.

I see Ms Leather studied Politics 1971-74. Bingo ! Presumably the absence of a Mr Leather explains the desire to scrub out the father's role. After all, "the personal is political".

Gordon Freece said...

Men, as we all know, fart.

Methane is a greenhouse gas.

Fatherless families are the planet's only hope. It's no coincidence that the notorious planet-hater Laban Tall would urge an objectively genocidal tolerance for fatherhood.

JohnM said...

The dubious figure of 1 in 4 women being raped on campus can be seen here - claim 1.

The page also discusses domestic violence claims in the US.

Anonymous said...

Laban: "Presumably the absence of a Mr Leather explains the desire to scrub out the father's role."

"Born in Uganda, Suzi Leather studied politics at Exeter University, where she met her future husband, politics lecturer Iain Hampsher-Monk."

So she is married and, as we established earlier, she does have children, contrary to your confident predictions.

The issue is ostensibly about providing healthy food for schoolchildren, yet you seem to be preoccupied with thoughts about her reproductive and marital affairs.

Suzi Leather - such an alluring name!

DJ said...

Anyway, what with this 'junk' thing anyway ?

Aren't cheeseburgers just a different type of food ? Surely plenty of kids have grown up eating chips constantly and gone on to be perfectly healthy ? Do we really want to base social policy on some Victorian ideal of familes collecting their food fresh from the farmer's gate ? How relevant is that myth to 21st century families ? And do we really want a situation where children are encouraged to starve themselves to death rather than eat so called 'junk food' ?

I think we should be told.

Anonymous said...

"Aren't cheeseburgers just a different type of food ?"

The voice of Johnny Vegas.

There's tomatoes in the ketchup too!