Around 18 months ago I attended a panel debate in London where the audience was populated by both consumer and public health industry reps, as well as mere interested observers like myself.
The venue had kindly laid on refreshments afterwards and, while circulating, I found myself at one point chatting to a public health professional.
During the conversation I expressed my view that the public health movement had morphed from a position of benevolent concern for the public into one where coercion and bullying appeared to be central tactics; that in the past, public health had offered advice and support for those who wished to change their lifestyles, but generally left alone those who were content with taking ubiquitously-known risks.
The occasion sticks in my mind because – to my surprise – the guy nodded and seemed to agree with me!
“Where’s the empathy?”, he rhetorically questioned as I necked my wine and he sipped his orange juice, “It is true that there are some who have forgotten that their first priority should be to engage and persuade”.
One of the “some” revealed himself last night in an astonishing performance on Twitter.
Last week, the BBC rolled out their latest e-cig ‘expert’ to regurgitate the fantasies of Big Pharma and the irrational prejudices of rent-seekers – you can listen to his bizarre claims here and here. Said expert – the head of the Faculty of Public Health, no less – was naturally challenged with facts and proper evidence to counter his stark scaremongery such as that e-cigs cause blindness, amongst others.
Originally written By Dick Puddlecote