BBC ARE AT IT!
At last…a current subject where I am in total agreement with the SNP. The BBC are at it with their lunchtime coverage of the Coronavirus Update programme.
They have changed the format, the programme is extended, the Scottish Government input consists of the daily and weekly statistics then there will be some public health officials, all completely non political, but then the other parties in Scotland are given free rein to attack the Scottish Government with no input from the SNP, the biggest and most supported Party in Scotland or any right of reply from the Scottish Government. It is outrageously biased and Keith Brown is absolutely right to have written to the BBC to complain.
Now I hope the SNP are serious about this complaint and be prepared to take measures if the BBC do not urgently review and amend their programme. The viewer numbers watching the daily programme are higher than alternative programmes and the SNP should be willing to take a hard line with this. The BBC enjoy privileges as a public service broadcaster, they should be reminded that responsibilities go with those advantages and fairness and balance is one of them.
While they are at it they might want to ask why the BBC are intent in criticising the SG response to Covid and why they constantly try to suggest there is little difference between Scotland and England in terms of performance? The first thing to say about this is to say how difficult it is to get numbers for England alone. The BBC never go down the “four nations” route when it comes to reporting new cases or new deaths. You might get a Scotland figure but the main news never mentions the English figures, no they are always the UK. This of course disguises the really bad situation in England.
I am writing this article on Sunday so I will use that day’s figures to illustrate the huge difference between Scotland and England. This table shows the total infections, new infections that day, total number of deaths and new deaths that day.
So England at that point had 2,922,841 cases and 77478 deaths. In comparison Scotland has had 160992 infections at that stage with tragically 5305 people losing their lives. Scotland represents 9.8% of the population of England. So, if there was little difference between the position in Scotland and England new infections in Scotland would be around 286438, instead the figure is massively lower at 160992. Likewise on deaths if the levels were the same, or little difference, the Scottish death rate would be around 7592. The Scottish death figure is 5305, every one a tragedy as are the deaths in England but it is totally dishonest to suggest these figures are similar or of no statistical importance.
The fact is England has the highest death rate from Covid 19 in the World. If you want to hear that on the news then you need to watch CNN because the BBC have no intention of letting you know about that. Even on CNN it is described as the UK, Scotland just being dumped in even though our rates are very substantially lower.
There is also a desperation to do down the Scottish Government at all times, every time Fiona Bruce opened her mouth on Question Time the other night when addressing Dr Philippa Whitford, she was intent on decrying the Scottish Government’s performance on Covid. Inaccurately as it turns out and now subject to yet another complaint.
It is the same in terms of the steps to introduce the vaccine. Scotland put all efforts into inoculating those in care homes and have put this at the top of the agenda because it was this group where most people were dying. It is also the most difficult group to deal with as the vaccine must be delivered to them and the work carried out in a fixed timescale due to the short period the vaccine can be safely used without the required refrigeration. England are still a long way behind Scotland on this but this must never be mentioned on the news.
Now I have been a strong critic of Nicola Sturgeon on a range of issues recently but there can be no doubt her excellent communications skills, clear messaging etc have saved Scottish lives as has the remarkable performance and efforts of all involved in the Scottish NHS. It is very wrong of the BBC to try and downplay this, clearly for political reasons.
It is a measure of just how worried and desperate the BBC and Westminster have become over the vulnerability of the Union that they seek, even when the statistical evidence is so overwhelming, for a GERS style form of reporting on health where they disguise the truth and would like us all to believe any good fortune is down to them. It’s never going to work.
Hopefully the vaccination programme will continue to be rolled out efficiently and later this year we can all return to a life minus a lot of the necessary restrictions we are currently facing.
I am, as always
Yours for Scotland
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