Thursday, 27 March 2014

Health Fascism - the new normal for public health


Today marks a new low - we've got used to the endless dribble of health scare stories in the media but there has been a shift. Where response was once left up to our judgement - if the Daily Mail told us some bloke in a white coat had found that bacon causes cancer we were left with a choice of whether to ignore his advice. Now though, officialdom throws out misinformation, scares and exaggeration in order to prosecute their philosophy - I've called them nannying fussbuckets for some while now but this no longer fits, it's too friendly, too cuddly.

These people are fascists. Health Fascists.

Here's today's selection of their health fascism:

The winner is Dame Sally Davies, Chief Medical Officer with another demand for sugar taxes based on the complete fiction that "overweight is seen as the norm". Perhaps she can explain that to this woman who was told she was 'obese' by Dame Sally's cohorts.

Not content with talking rubbish about obesity, Dame Sally then launched into an idiotic attack on soap operas. Apparently there's too much drinking:

Hard-drinking soap characters offer an "irresponsible" portrayal of excessive alcohol consumption, according to the Chief Medical Officer for England

Elsewhere we've got:

The doctor who thinks e-cigarettes are like methadone. Seriously.

Or the people who want to ban cigarettes for everyone born after 2000 - which means come the end of this decade some adults can buy fags and some can't. These people are barking mad.

Still we can rely on academia to provide some bad research. Like that showing e-cigs don't aid quitting.

Plus public health people complaining because Council's have directed public health spending into things like reducing road accidents, improving air quality, reducing excess winter deaths in the elderly and improving food safety education or enforcement. Aren't all these things actually public health? It appears the doctors don't think so.

Health fascism everywhere you look. For public health it's the new normal.



FrankC said...

Body Mass Index. Pah!
Whatever happened to "Can you pinch an inch?"

Jackson said...

I posted a suggestion that smokers born after a certain date be licenced, to in Australia, a couple of years ago. The idea, not completely thought through by myself, was that young people who are banned from purchasing tobacco anyway, would be educated in basic biology, nutrition and tobacco. They would then be free at the legal age to have a card that would enable the purchase of tobacco.

It could be seen as discrimination since young adults would be required to carry a permit while older adults would not. But laws and regulations change over time anyway. Young people miss out on some things that older generations had and often there was a definite date when some benefits ended.

It could also be seen as a possible intrusion of privacy since it may be that cards would need to be swiped at the point of purchase rather than just sighted by the retailer or worker. But I think it might be worth considering.

FWIW I quit smoking over a year ago after buying my first ecig.

Junican said...

And, of course, the same card could be used for the purchase of alcohol and any number of things which are currently frowned upon by those in command. Rationing would also be quite easy, and no one would mind one bit. In fact, why apply it to just younger people coming through? Why not apply it to everyone for everything? No more obesity since everyone would be permitted only, say, half an ounce of chocolate (or equivalent) per week. In fact, you could go further! If the card did not show a mark indicating that the holder had attended at least one session at a gym, then all 'privileges' would cease immediately. Great idea, Jackson.

Jackson said...

Hi Junican, like I said "not completely thought through". My para 3 covers some of the objections you raise. And that we are living under increasing scrutiny and intrusion is becoming more apparent. The velvet glove is coming off.