Richard Baker - I invite you to consider some real facts about the costs of crime from Straight Statistics. Then, when you grow up, abandon the tabloid approach, and perhaps become a real politician with a soundly-based concept of what justice really means, you might just make a useful contribution in the Scottish Parliament and to Scottish society.
Tuesday, 19 April 2011
This man aspires to be Scotland's next Justice Minister. He relies on a 'cost' figure from Medics against Violence which they flatly deny ever making.
Rapidly shifting ground in the face of Isabel Fraser's facts, he relies on newspaper reports, newspapers such as the 'Daily Record', which simply reports Baker himself, and his unsupported assertions.
Faced with ridicule on this, he shifts ground again to 'figures from the Violence Reduction Unit'
Here is a quote from the publication that Baker appears to be misusing and misquoting in the interview -
"The Health Service bears a significant burden from violence. Conservative estimates from England and Wales suggest that three to six per cent of the annual Health Service budget is used in the treatment of outcomes of violence. This equates to an annual cost of between £258m - £517m in Scotland (Home Office Police Research Unit)"
pp21 of Reducing Violence: An Alliance for a Safer Future
As this clearly show, Baker is quoting England and Wales figures on the total cost of violence from all causes, either a blatant careless error or a disingenuous misrepresentation of what the VRU were saying.
Labour's policy on knife crime is knee-jerk populism, unsupported by any real evidence, and attacked as unworkable by the police and justice authorities.
(Andy Kerr last week made a fool of himself on the same topic with Gordon Brewer)
Don't let this man anywhere near the Scottish justice system, never mind a ministerial post!
Vote for the SNP and for Kenny MacAskill, the Justice Minister of Scotland, a qualified and experienced lawyer, former senior partner in a Scottish law firm, steeped in the law, and with a sound grasp of fact and figures.