In the Herald today:
Mark Smith is the latest to join the list of supposed journalists forced to retain their sanity by pretending that the SNP leader and her team are not actually doing better but just seem to be. Just who is doing the PR job for them is not clear when you look at the list of those who regularly perpetuate this myth – Brewer, Marr, Smith, Gordon, Macwhirter, the wee guy at Channel 4, the wee guy at Newsnet.scot, even those at the Guardian.
Going by the opinion polls the public see things differently.
The Scottish Government is objectively, based on empirical evidence, doing far better in managing the covid crises.
To repeat myself for the umpteenth time:
First, from the Scottish Affairs Committee on 18th June:
The Scottish Affairs Committee hears from a panel of constitutional, public health, and economics experts as it probes the UK and Scottish governments’ responses to the coronavirus pandemic.
The witnesses were:
- AP: Akash Paun, Senior Fellow, Institute for Government;
- LB: Professor Linda Bauld, Professor of Public Health, University of Edinburgh;
- DB: Professor David Bell, Professor of Economics, University of Sterling (sic);
- NM: Professor Nicola McEwen, Co-Director, Centre of Constitutional Change
It’s good to know that the committee admin know where Sterling is and that Professor Pennington was unavailable.
The comments by the four are being selectively and grudgingly reported with only soor plooms being extracted, so here are some of the comments that capture the essence of the story that was told there:
LB: Lack of public health capacity – if there’s lack of capacity in England that will affect the health of the Scottish people.
NM: 4 Nations approach doesn’t mean a uniform approach is needed.
LB: There was a lack of transparency in information presented [by UK Government] to SAGE – The Scottish advisers were not able to see that.
AP: There’s a greater degree of transparency about the Scottish Government decision-making approach , a greater openness.
LB: On transparency of advisory groups: Scottish group much better, publishing minutes and had been doing that from very beginning, really good, good model. Quite different at UK level. Not being able to see those papers from SAGE. Not even knowing who was on the group. Completely unacceptable.
DB: NRS data in Scotland better than data in UK. That task (research) easiest in Scotland.
LB: On communicating decision making about exit strategies: At the UK level absolutely not! The public can see that. In Scotland not perfect at all but FM is far better at communicating these things. She’s been able to say where the decisions have come from. She does lack of transparency on pacing.
Second, hard evidence: