Sunday, 18 September 2016

Day of the jackass

I've been away for a few days hopping around the English Channel. While I was out of the country, the Royal College of Medicine gave the British public a unique chance to see some of the worst people in the world for one night only.

At a self-congratulatory event with the delusional title 'Winning the end-game against tobacco', the Royal College hosted not only the thick-as-two-short-planks junk scientist Anna Gilmore and the obese nonentity Martin McKee, but also the champagne socialist Gabriel Scally and lemon-sucking prohibitionist Deborah Arnott. As if that weren't enough - and, let's face it, it isn't - it also featured drunken social media casualty John Ashton and - all the way from Australia! - dense sociologist Simon Chapman.

Chapman brought the curtain down on this intellectual feast with a talk entitled 'Years well spent. A reflection on a professional lifetime spent in public health advocacy'. That's 'advocacy', you will notice, not 'scholarship', 'academia', or even 'magazine editing'. The 'years well spent' were largely dedicated to vandalising advertising billboards, burning taxpayers' money and demonising anybody who uses nicotine.

Having travelled so far, Chapman was disappointed to find that none of his many antagonists fancied paying good money to see him toot his own horn.

Alas, it seems that almost everybody else in Britain made the same inexplicable decision to stay away, as one of the event's seven speakers confirmed.

Ouch! Let's hope the Royal College of Medicine made Simple Simon pay his own way.


I see that Mr Puddlecote has also noticed that the 'public health' crusade is not exactly a mass movement. 

I've also managed to track down one of the audience members and he is - surprise, surprise - a anti-vaping tax-sponger who works at a sock puppet NGO....


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