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Manx Bean

Lets Walk and Cycle to Work...Patronising Twaddle

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I remember the days when Slim would have been all over this thread like white on rice in a glass of milk on a paper plate in a snowstorm. Whatever happened to him?

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6 hours ago, Roger Mexico said:

But exercise doesn't prevent.  It does lessen the risk, but many of those who partake even the approved amount will still suffer.  The biggest component of 'cause' is still random - 'environmental' factors (and genetics) will still be less than that.  And that's before you consider the inevitable problems of cause/correlation.  As I pointed out in my footnote the people who do take additional exercise may well be those who are healthier in the first place.  You can't do double-blind trials in public health.

This doesn't mean that moderate exercise shouldn't be encouraged of course, but even then you need to have evidence that particular exercise initiative will work.  There are all sorts of problems and impracticalities in what is being proposed regarding work travel.  Maybe people would be better going for a walk at lunchtime instead?  And it still doesn't answer why a formal consultation is needed when commonsense and informal surveys can be quicker and easier.  Far too much public health promotion can be PR-driven virtue-signalling rather than encouraging long-term behaviour changes.

Meanwhile if the Government is really serious about this, I assume the first thing they will be doing is getting rid of all all the reserved parking spaces for their workers in Douglas, so as to encourage healthier travel habits.  And dropping all the charges for the NSC that they have just put up.  And, given the well known health benefits of a more equal society that you refer to, putting up taxes on the better-off and transferring that to those less rolling in money.  Or we might just suspect that these exhortations are not entirely sincere.

I'll ask you again to back this statement up. I think you're wrong

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8 hours ago, Roger Mexico said:

But exercise doesn't prevent.  It does lessen the risk, but many of those who partake even the approved amount will still suffer.  The biggest component of 'cause' is still random - 'environmental' factors (and genetics) will still be less than that.  And that's before you consider the inevitable problems of cause/correlation.  As I pointed out in my footnote the people who do take additional exercise may well be those who are healthier in the first place.  You can't do double-blind trials in public health.

This doesn't mean that moderate exercise shouldn't be encouraged of course, but even then you need to have evidence that particular exercise initiative will work.  There are all sorts of problems and impracticalities in what is being proposed regarding work travel.  Maybe people would be better going for a walk at lunchtime instead?  And it still doesn't answer why a formal consultation is needed when commonsense and informal surveys can be quicker and easier.  Far too much public health promotion can be PR-driven virtue-signalling rather than encouraging long-term behaviour changes.

Meanwhile if the Government is really serious about this, I assume the first thing they will be doing is getting rid of all all the reserved parking spaces for their workers in Douglas, so as to encourage healthier travel habits.  And dropping all the charges for the NSC that they have just put up.  And, given the well known health benefits of a more equal society that you refer to, putting up taxes on the better-off and transferring that to those less rolling in money.  Or we might just suspect that these exhortations are not entirely sincere.

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I'm not quite sure I understand your first argument. I accept that we're talking about the simplified version of prevention and causation etc rather than the hyper correct epidemiological terminology. That said, I think you could argue that physical activity prevents such illnesses by reducing the overall risk/odds ratio of developing the conditions listed. The subsequent consequence of lower odds is that fewer would develop the disease of interest calculable by the population attributable fraction. I'm sure the number needed to treat at a certain threshold is high but on a population level this will still result in large benefits. I completely agree that you can't do double blind trials in public health, but you can perform randomised control trials which equally distributes confounding factors. Many of the papers listed in the Canadian review were randomised. I'd say you can never really prove a concept like this but I'd say it meets many of the Bradford Hill criteria. 

I think what they are addressing here is physical activity, not exercise (which has to be planned and structured). Overall, I think behaviour change is poorly understood and is typically expensive (also not my area of expertise so willing to be corrected). Nudges do work and several people may well have changed their actions after simply reading this thread, though they were likely quite motivated prior. Public health always feels a bit patronising, like your mum telling you to take your coat, because it addresses a problem before it happens or impacts on liberties. That said, nobody likes being told that their ill health is their fault, we'd all happily adopt the sick role and then complain about waiting times and costs. 

 

I agree on the assertion of health inequalities. Maybe the DOI would be better using their resources to actually assess the health impact of their major projects. This really didn't seem to be considered with the prom, perhaps the island's largest recreational facility (my objections still aren't as strong as some of my family members, we all know who I mean). Removing parking spaces definitely helps, but I can already imagine the threads on here. 

PS sorry to all of you who bothered to read this and don't really care. 

Edited by benl
I hit post before I had written it because I'm an idiot.

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Going back to my opening post, I wish to stress and underline my whole-hearted belief in the benefits that are derived from regular exercise, diet etc. 

My point is still this:

I would request that politicians and senior public servants do forthwith suspend their constant patronising of the people they serve (yes, they are there to serve us, and not the other way around), and let us people decide for ourselves what is good for us, or not. As I and other posters have referenced, it is particularly insulting (albeit it hilariously ironic) that the person "promoting" this probably doesn't even own a bicycle and the most challenging walk of late has been between his office and the Government Canteen for that day's "Special" (went large with the coke and chips too no doubt).

Oh, and for the sake of our sanity, please STOP letting your piss-poor PR gurus loose on your press releases. Active Transport??!! Jesus on a bike, what the hell does that mean??!!

Oh, and a P.S. what happened to the much lauded tax break announced in the budget on employers buying bicycles? Things appear to have gone a bit quiet on that 5 minute wonder, haven't they?

 

 

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Is providing information about how to live healthily "patronising"?

Is it wrong to use public funds to give incentives for healthier lifestyles, if that also reduces costs of treatment caused by unhealthy lifestyles? i.e. is it better to subsidise sports facilities than patch up the unfit?

I think you have a point in that there is a danger that this becomes busy work for civil servants, but there does need to be balance. 

 

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22 minutes ago, Manx Bean said:

Going back to my opening post, I wish to stress and underline my whole-hearted belief in the benefits that are derived from regular exercise, diet etc. 

My point is still this:

I would request that politicians and senior public servants do forthwith suspend their constant patronising of the people they serve (yes, they are there to serve us, and not the other way around), and let us people decide for ourselves what is good for us, or not. As I and other posters have referenced, it is particularly insulting (albeit it hilariously ironic) that the person "promoting" this probably doesn't even own a bicycle and the most challenging walk of late has been between his office and the Government Canteen for that day's "Special" (went large with the coke and chips too no doubt).

Oh, and for the sake of our sanity, please STOP letting your piss-poor PR gurus loose on your press releases. Active Transport??!! Jesus on a bike, what the hell does that mean??!!

Oh, and a P.S. what happened to the much lauded tax break announced in the budget on employers buying bicycles? Things appear to have gone a bit quiet on that 5 minute wonder, haven't they?

 

 

I know the point you are making MB but that is because you fall into a sensible section of society that bears responsibility and can be trusted to do the right thing. Unfortunately that isn't the case across the whole of society. If doing the right thing were the norm then there would be little need for a justice system and jails would be empty and you could leave your house unlocked all of the time, but that just isn't the case. An so it goes for the way people live their life in general.

Smoking is bad for you, everyone knows and accepts that, it causes cancer and heart disease etc but some people still smoke. Now they might say "so what, it's a free country I'll do as I please" well that's ok up to a point but when/if you get cancer/heart disease then you become a burden on the system. Again they might say "well I paid in all my life so why not" unfortunately the system can't take the strain of that line of thought and so it is incumbent upon everyone to mitigate their potential healthcare requirement by doing stuff like this. 

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13 minutes ago, Declan said:

I think you have a point in that there is a danger that this becomes busy work for civil servants,

 

Therein lies the rub.

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3 hours ago, Declan said:

Is providing information about how to live healthily "patronising"?

Is it wrong to use public funds to give incentives for healthier lifestyles, if that also reduces costs of treatment caused by unhealthy lifestyles? i.e. is it better to subsidise sports facilities than patch up the unfit?

I think you have a point in that there is a danger that this becomes busy work for civil servants, but there does need to be balance. 

 

No, but it is theft to tax everyone for a product to discourage some who have a problem with said product. Eg sugar.

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11 hours ago, Bobbie Bobster said:

He got sense

You mean he gave up cycling? Good on him.

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Most of the questions raised here are as unanswerable as how it can possibly be that I walk to and from work every day and I'm still a right fat bastard.

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15 hours ago, benl said:

Public health always feels a bit patronising, like your mum telling you to take your coat, because it addresses a problem before it happens or impacts on liberties.

If I was sorting out the budget that would be the first thing to go. Closed down and out the door. Devil makes work for idle hands, e.g. proposal for water fluoridation.

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On 8/2/2017 at 9:35 AM, Manx Bean said:

 

Oh, and a P.S. what happened to the much lauded tax break announced in the budget on employers buying bicycles? Things appear to have gone a bit quiet on that 5 minute wonder, haven't they?

 

 

I suspect the will was lost with all the moaning about it potentially applying to government workers along with some twisted perception they'd all get  1000 quid new bike. 

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17 minutes ago, notwell said:

I suspect the will was lost with all the moaning about it potentially applying to government workers along with some twisted perception they'd all get  1000 quid new bike. 

It quite clearly needs its own public consultation.

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On 8/1/2017 at 12:54 PM, Uhtred said:

Well, you make a good point - let's take a look at the paragon of physical perfection that is our over-stuffed, florid faced, lard-arsed Chief Minister. How many times when he was Health Minister (a comedy gem that would have silenced even Malcolm Tucker) did he and his roly-poly, 18 stone, jet-set sidekick Charters put their names to healthy eating initiative this, or cut down on your alcohol intake that? Quayle looks like some gout-laden, dissolute, Regency porker and yet we are hectored by his government to cycle to work. After you, fat-boy.

.

 

Edited by Fthlagen
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