Wednesday, 5 March 2014

"Fakecharity tax may be necessary, English blogger says"

From the BBC:

'Involuntary pledges'

The blogger Mark Wadsworth, who often posts about 'fakecharities', supposedly independent bodies who receive most of their funding from the UK government to churn out press releases to make it look as if there were some sort of scientific basis or popular support for whatever crap the UK government came up with in the first place, says the fakecharity Sustain consumes more than £2 million of taxpayers' money a year.

Adding a 20p tax for every baseless lie such people pump out would raise more than £1.1bn.

Unlike Sustain, Mark Wadsworth does not receive about £2 million a year from the following:

A-Team Foundation
BBC Wildlife Fund
Big Lottery Fund - Changing Spaces programme
Big Lottery Local Food Fund (various)
British Heart Foundation
Campaign to Protect Rural England
City Bridge Trust -
Esmee Fairbairn Foundation
European Commission (via Defra's Rural Payments Agency)
European Fisheries Fund
Friends of.The Regent's Park ' .
Garfield Weston Foundation
Greater London Authority (various)
Interreg IVB NWE (European Regional Development Fund)
John Ellerman Foundation
Kenneth Miller Trust
Network for Social Change
PoldeiT-Puckham Charitable Foundation
Practical Action
Rowan Trust
Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
Russell Partnership
Sheepdrove Trust
Social Action Fund (The Social Investment Business Limited)
Stichting DLO
Tides Foundation (Patagonia Environmental Grants programme)
Tudor Trust
Waterloo Foundation

"See page 8 of their last submitted accounts if you think I'm joking," added Mark Wadsworth.


The Stigler said...

Nice one.

Most talk about addiction is bollocks. There are things that give people pleasure and for miserable or depressed people they overuse them to try and deal with their misery and depression.

It's why most people can walk into a bookies and place the odd bet, or do a line of coke without it being a problem. A few things have a physical dependency like nicotine and heroin, but with nicotine it's generally reckoned that you clear that out quite quickly.

Dinero said...

Its a bit suprising to see the "cheif medical officer" using the word addictive in that context. Surely medical science has a strict definition of addictive. And how does she know that "research will find - ". Is she able to see into the future. She needs to re-familiarise herself with the scientific method methinks.

Seeing that list is informative a whole new bureaucratic level off fake charitieness. As you say a Quangocracy. Its actually quite hard to find a fizzy soft drink that contains sugar nowadays.

Mark Wadsworth said...

TS, ta.

Apparently it is harder to give up smoking that to give up heroin. Nearly all heroin users give up voluntarily after ten or twenty years. Most smokers don't.

D, yes, they bandy about "addiction" and "epidemic" with gay abandon nowadays.

Anonymous said...

I was wondering about this myself but from what I can find there is no gold standard or hard and fast rule for what defines addiction, just some general principles. It is assessed from both behavioural and biological angles.
Regards the biological route the release of dopamine in the brain is key to the analysis of addiction. The amount, or more importantly the intensity of dopamine released in response to some activity [equating to 'the rush']the more likely it is to be addictive. Cocaine has been shown in animal tests to be amongst the most addictive of substances. They assess it by measuring just how hard the animal [rats] will work to get more of the substance. They will basically starve themselves to death to get their fix.
One common factor which may help explain why some get addicted and some don't is the concentration of dopamine 'receptors' in a specific part of the brain. It tends to be lower in people with high levels of obesity and drug addicts. Sugar consumed to excessive amounts may just come under the category of general 'overeating' and propensity to obesity.

Bayard said...

"research will find - ". Is she able to see into the future?"

No, she's just being a realist. Spend enough money on research and you can prove almost anything.

"Its actually quite hard to find a fizzy soft drink that contains sugar nowadays."

Agreed, but they are still revoltingly sweet and instead contain vile sweeteners that I am convinced on the basis of no evidence whatsoever except that sugar occurs naturally and sweeteners don't, are much worse for you than sugar.

Ben Jamin' said...

I just read today that diets high in protein shorten life considerably.

So no fat. No protein. And now, no carbs.

What do they expect us to eat? Cardboard?

Kj said...

BJ: I´ve wondered about that as well. It seems that protein and energy is no longer necessary. The most important thing now is to get enough fiber, i.e. one thing that the body does not metabolize. The funny thing is that the nutrition nazis are now even aboard with carbs being bad, but without allowing for more fat to fill energy needs, so there is indeed nothing you can eat but, cardboard...

Bayard said...

BJ, fat has been rehabilitated. Apparently, its demonisation was all an evil plot by the sugar producer lobby. Pace the nutrition nazis, but we are not looking at what you can eat, but what you can eat too much of without it doing you harm. When over-consumption is a given, the only thing that fits the bill is fibre. The idea that we might simply eat less is the LVT of nutrition.