Friday, 10 May 2013

Forbidden dissent

A couple of weeks ago, a bunch of medical temperance types held a meeting in the European Parliament to push for minimum pricing. I nearly fell off my chair when I read this comment attributed to a representative from the Royal College of Physicians...

When mentioning the Scottish MUP scheme he explained that the measure was part of the Scottish Nationalist Party Manifesto and that, as a rule, it was forbidden to oppose the Manifesto once voted on. Thus, he highlighted that the current debates were actually profoundly anti-democratic.

What fresh jackbootery is this?! I realise that Scotland is going to hell in hardcart, but I didn't know it was "forbidden to oppose the Manifesto" of the ruling party.

Perhaps he was misquoted? Let's ask someone who was there, namely EU sock-puppet supremo Monika Kosinka of the European Public Health Alliance...





Ms. Kosinka was born in a communist country. Can you tell? There is, of course, a massive difference between a democracy and an elected dictatorship.

The charmers of public health aren't very keen on free and open discussion, as you might expect from people whose arguments are wafer-thin. For example, the National Rifle Association recently referred to the debate about gun control as a "culture war". You don't have to be a gun nut to see that they the right to say that, but not if you're the editor of the Lancet, Richard Horton...



Horton wrote a book called Health Wars. Book him, Danno.

Kosinka has form for wanting the authorities to pounce on anyone she disagrees with. The Commentator recently reported her excitement about post-Leveson newspaper regulation. All it took was for them to report the results of a survey for her to want to unleash the hounds...


And journalists are not the only people who she wants to see clapped in irons...



Like 77% of Scots, I didn't vote for the SNP. Nor did I vote for the EU, the Royal College of Physicians, the EPHA, the Alcohol Health Alliance or any of the other state-funded authoritarian creeps who think they know better than me how to live my life. But even if the whole world went insane and I was the only person who didn't vote for them, I would not be "forbidden" from opposing their ridiculous ideas.

As John Stuart Mill put it: "If all mankind minus one were of one opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind." That's not "profoundly anti-democractic". It's called civilisation.


UPDATE


 
In the topsy-turvy world of public health, quoting someone's exact words constitutes "smearing", apparently. Glibly describing someone as a 'lapdog apologist for corporate interests', on the other hand, is perfectly reasonable. Go figure.

7 comments:

anthonymasters said...

The government may be elected on a manifesto, but the debate carries on through the parliament. Proposals are put forward, almost exclusively by the government, and the whole parliament votes on the proposals. This is how parliamentary democracy works, not executive decree adorned by elections every few years.

Diesel said...

I thought the Brown Gorgon proved in court that "manifestos are not worth the paper they are printed on", and cannot be enforced.

King of Scurf said...

How do people like this ever get into positions of responsibility?

Jon Campbell said...

At this point it's worth remembering that the 2005 labour manifesto allowed non-food pubs to allow smoking.

Junican said...

@ King of Scurf.

I doubt that they are in positions of authority. More likely to be from the lie and spin department.

Ivan D said...

Public health is the last bastion of far left ideological extremism so it is not entirely surprising that it should throw up a vicious undemocratic creature such as Kosinska. What is perhaps not surprising but definitely disappointing is that she is given a moderately high profile platform by the EU and allowed to abuse that platform to insult those who pay her wages.

I am not sure what Bill Gates whose foundation partly funds the EPHA thinks about Kosinska's apparent loathing of people who make money. Perhaps someone should ask him?

It is the funding that gives her a voice. The fact that most of it comes from the EU is reprehensible and provides further ammunition for parties such as UKIP. I suspect that public support for some of the ideas behind the EPHA would not extend to paying for an unpleasant autocrat at its head.

I have to confess to being intrigued by Horton's book which apparently argues for "a new understanding of patients not as subjects but as people". I have seen precious little evidence of such sentiment in The Lancet's editorial but perhaps the good doctor is merely misunderstood. Double standards in the medical profession? Not likely old chap!

Sarton Bander said...

I'm guessing wildly that Monika derives her income from taxpayer extortion.