The Herald’s Libertarian Brexiteer Academic is wrong again

In the Herald, once more, Brexiteer and campaigner against the OBFA, Dr Stuart Waiton of Abertay University:

I made a public statement last week in these pages suggesting the Stay at Home, Protect the NHS, Save Lives slogan had inadvertently led to more deaths of elderly and vulnerable people. For daring to question the mantra I was denounced by Dundee City Council leader John Alexander who explained that, “clarity of message is absolutely essential during such a crisis”. What Mr Alexander really means by this is that a simplistic message is needed for a Scottish populous who he and many in the Scottish Government don’t trust. Protecting the NHS from a mass of Covid patients made sense, although it is worth noting that not a single health service across the Western world has not coped and coped quite comfortably with the spike in cases. Indeed, as it stands, as Gregor Smith, Scotland’s interim chief medical officer has observed, hospitals in Scotland remain “eerily quiet”.

Just on that last point:

And on ‘Stay at home’:

The ‘Stay at home’ alleged mantra, is so much more than that. It is clear, practical advice on what to do to reduce the spread of a very real virus which really will kill you. I know that some behaviour is an over-reaction and that some people are hysterical with fear but the ‘Stay at home’ message has been an effective practical tool to suppress real biological infection.

5 thoughts on “The Herald’s Libertarian Brexiteer Academic is wrong again

  1. He sounds like one of those gun toting creatures from across the pond.
    Is he suggesting that it would be better if our hospitals were better utilised,i.e. insufficient numbers of people getting sick.
    How dare they stay at home and not get sick!
    Watched the Nike conference debate chaired by our FM at lunch time.
    HM press really trying to stick Ian Murray’s allegations to the SG.
    Just as well their readership didn’t have Murray or his London rules OK friends running the show.
    Many more would be sick or dying.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. He has been a BBC Scotland go-to for years. With his plebeian north of England accent this is supposed to indicate the universal attraction of the libertarian message.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. “I made a public statement last week in these pages suggesting the Stay at Home, Protect the NHS, Save Lives slogan had inadvertently led to more deaths of elderly and vulnerable people.”

    I don’t think he meant Scotland. It was England. And it wasn’t the slogan.

    “In the meantime, the policy response to COVID-19 has been characterised by a series of highly dubious ethical decisions. The political and scientific interest in ‘herd immunity’ (and the implied acceptance of the deaths of large numbers of older and more vulnerable people) was central to the government’s decision-making in the crucial months of February and March. It was abandoned only when it became clear in an advice paper from Imperial College London that the NHS would be overwhelmed and up to 250,000 deaths, mostly of older people, would be likely.

    This assumption that the lives of vulnerable groups are of second-order importance is also evident in other policies – the absence of PPE and testing in the care sector have been noted, but the most gross ethical breach has been in the transfer of infected and untested patients from hospitals to care homes. Not only are there reports of councils refusing to release payments unless these patients are admitted, but where fatalities occur, care homes are not equipped to deal with them ethically. There is typically no GP presence, no palliation, no fluids, no syringe drivers and no staff with end of life training.

    Reports also emerged of residents in some care homes for older people being categorised en masse as not requiring resuscitation should they contract the disease. The Care Quality Commission had to step in and issue a warning for the practice to stop. A similar tale applied to adults of working age, with the National Institute for Clinical Excellence being forced to change its emergency guidance to NHS doctors, after disability groups threatened legal action over what they feared could result in certain patients not getting equal access to critical care. Meanwhile, there are no reliable figures available for coronavirus-related deaths amongst working age adults with a learning disability, autism or similar conditions and disabilities. The contrast with the government’s ethical framework could not be starker.

    Time for a public inquiry.”

    Liked by 1 person

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