nanny state

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Of British origin. This etymology is incomplete. You can help Wiktionary by elaborating on the origins of this term.


nanny state (plural nanny states)

  1. (derogatory) A state whose government institutions are authoritative and over-paternalistic, interfering with and controlling people's lives. [from the mid-20th c.]
    • 2009, Mark Fisher, chapter 8, in Capitalist Realism: Is There No Alternative?, Zero Books, →ISBN, pages 63:
      Scapegoating an impotent government (running around to clean up the messes made by its business friends) arises from bad faith, from a continuing hostility to the Nanny State that nevertheless goes alongside a refusal to accept the consequences of the sidelining of government in global capitalism []


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