11.11.2015

Undated: 'Nanny state'


The government regarded as overprotective or as interfering unduly with personal choice.
     -- Definition from "Concise Oxford English Dictionary: Luxury Edition" (2011): @


* Several sources say the term originated in 1965; however, journalist and commentator Dorothy Thompson used the term in a June 1952 newspaper column (link: @):

     But the empires have also filled the role of headmaster, or Nanny-governess. (It is an amusing notion that comes to me that, with the retreat of empire, Britons are turning Britain itself into a Nanny-state, perhaps out of long habit in persuading or coercing natives to do what is good for them.)

* The cartoon above was drawn by Leslie Illingworth for the September 21, 1949, edition of Punch magazine. (Archive of Illingworth's cartoons for Punch: @)

* In 1965, British politician Iain Macleod (also credited with coining the word "stagflation") used the term in his columns for The Spectator magazine.
     This new victory for the Nanny State represents the wrong approach. ("Bud Ban," February 12, 1965: @)
     In my occasional appearances as a poor man's Peter Simple I fire salvos in the direction of what I call the Nanny State. ("70 m.p.h.", December 3, 1965: @)

* A similar term, "grandmotherly government," dates to the 1870s. 


Resources
* "Public Health vs. The Nanny State?" (The Independent Institute, 2000): @
* "The Conservative Nanny State: How the Wealthy Use the Government to Stay Rich and Get Richer" (Dean Baker, 2006): @
* Entry from "Creative Compounding in English: The Semantics of Metaphorical and Metonymical Noun-Noun Combinations" (Reka Benczes, 2006): @
* "Against Autonomy: Justifying Coercive Paternalism" (Sarah Conly, 2012): @
* "Debating the Nanny State" (The Hill, 2015): @
* "Who's Afraid of the Nanny State? Introduction to a Symposium" (Sydney Law School Research Paper, 2015): @
* "Government Paternalism: Nanny State or Helpful Friend?" (Julian Le Grand and Bill New, 2015): @ 

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