WRONG: 'Rioters addicted to toxic games' - Supernanny talks Super Nonsense

'There are no easy answers', says Jo Frost... except when it comes to violent software

There were plenty of reasons to steer clear of England's rioters last week. We count fire, blunt weapons and an unedifying proximity to Foot Locker at the top of our list.


Yet according to the Daily Express, there was one we'd missed: these teenagers were positively poisonous. Contagious. Septic.

They were, to borrow the Express's choice phrase, "toxic youngsters". (We didn't see any of their podgy faces glowing in the moonlight but, let's face it, KFC does strange things.)

With such a troubling threat looming/looting, the Express has turned to guest columnist Jo Frost, aka Super Nanny, for answers. She has a "plan to save" these virulent punks, apparently. She can "fix" them.

We're all ears, Jo. Your country needs you.

She writes: "I felt for a moment as if we had stumbled into a real-life violent video game of the kind that so many of those involved are addicted to."

Of course, "addicted". So "addicted", they'd rather spend three nights kicking the windows of JJB. In the cold.

Sounds like a rubbish "real life video game", by the way. We'd rather play Zumba.

She continues: "These horrific games where points are given for burning, shooting and killing, where the graphics are so realistic you believe that they're real scenes of carnage, where those who play fantasise they have the power of life and death, are so brutal they completely desensitise anyone taking part."

And she was doing so well. Completely desensitise? Now, we'll admit, certain entertainment media has left us enfeebled and bewildered - little more than husks lying paralysed on the lounge carpet. Don't judge: Supernanny's an alluring programme.

But we're here to talk games. Go, Jo, go:

"Research shows that within 15 minutes of playing one of these games young men become highly aggressive and lack empathy in normal situations. It is not too fanciful to suggest it's a short step from being immersed in this war-like world to taking that nightmare mindset on to the streets with all the consequences of anarchy and violence we saw rip apart cities."

Research also shows that squirrels have successfully debated the socio-political merits of government ownership, and are now implementing their own Trotskyist acorn regime. Research we just made up. Without a credited source, just like Jo's.

Supernanny then offers her own solutions to the rioting problem, all the while maintaining that it "foolish to suggest there are easy answers".

She adds: "Those horrific video games which I mentioned earlier must be brought under control. Their content should be subject to censorship and the age at which they can be bought tightly controlled.

"Shopkeepers should demand proof of age and where they ignore this and break the law by selling them to children they should be fined."

Like. They. Do. Already.

Jo plugs her show - "Channel 4 television programme Extreme Parenting" - so now we have too.

Our tuppence: the less extreme the parenting, the better.