The previous chapter, in considering the period in British childcare legislation which is generally taken to represent the triumph of the discourse of treatment over punishment, argued that while the period represented the ‘high-water mark’ of the discourse of treatment, it was nevertheless not accurate to see this as the triumph of treatment. The chapter confronted in particular the arguments of Pitts (1988) and also Frost and Stein (1989) and suggested that in setting too much store by the reforming zeal of a Labour government they overstated the treatment side of the dichotomy and thus underestimated the extent to which it is still firmly underpinned by the discourse of punishment. The chapter argued that the two discourses are in an important sense parasitic upon each other, while it nevertheless remains true that, in particular periods, one end of the dichotomy may appear in sharper relief than the other.