Credit to Brenda Steele for heroically listening to this and alerting me to it.

Good Morning Scotland opens with:

‘And questions over the Scottish Government’s minimum unit pricing policy as a report suggests there’s been no fall in alcohol-related deaths.’

There then follows a debate where the interviewer does challenge the researcher from the Institute for Economic Affairs with just finding what they believed would be there anyway before allowing him to outline his findings. To be fair, another expert voice suggests it’s too early to draw any conclusions and refers to lower hospital admissions by those from more deprived groups targeted by the policy.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m000h0wl

The problem is that damage has been done here by allowing this report to be presented as a headline story and as potential evidence from an ‘independent’ research group to challenge an SNP ‘flagship’ policy.

The IEA, formerly the Taxpayer’s Alliance has a clear agenda to undermine any state intervention which harms the interests of the corporations and the rich who fund it.

The IEA has been repeatedly exposed as a partisan organisation which cannot be trusted. In this context, why did GMS not mention that they are alcohol-industry-funded?

https://www.bmj.com/content/348/bmj.g1572/rr/688516

The IEA is commonly fronted by Kate Andrews whose attack on the NHS has a certain resonance in these times:

The Good Morning Scotland team have surely seen BBC Newsnight’s Emily Maitlis ‘nail’ the IEA on funding in 2018:

https://www.thecanary.co/trending/2018/07/31/after-giving-it-a-free-run-the-bbc-finally-nailed-the-institute-for-economic-affairs/

The IEA’s wikipedia page sums them up well:

The Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) is a think tank that says that its experts “further the dissemination of free-market thinking”, and that it “analys[es] and expound[s] the role of markets in solving economic and social problems”.It subscribes to a right-wing and neoliberal worldview. Founded by businessman and battery farming pioneer Antony Fisher in 1955, it promotes monetarist economics. There has been discussion in the press and among parliamentarians as to whether the IEA is more accurately described as a lobbying operation than as a think tank.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Institute_of_Economic_Affairs

Further uncomfortable reading on the IEA:

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2018/nov/11/brexit-whistleblower-shahmir-sanni-taxpayers-alliance-concedes-it-launched-smears

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/institute-of-economic-affairs-offered-access-to-ministers-zm77g6k2c

http://whofundsyou.org/blog/video-newsnight-asks-who-funds-the-institute-of-economic-affiairs

https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/dark-money-investigations/right-wing-think-tank-accused-of-promoting-tobacco-oil-indu/

http://whofundsyou.org/org/institute-of-economic-affairs

https://theecologist.org/2018/sep/20/how-free-market-think-tank-recruited-scientists-attack-climate-science