The Black Lung Lie

A discussion of ‘smokers’ black lungs’ started in the comments today. It’s the widespread belief that smokers’ lungs turn black. Rose pointed out that it all started with James I about four centuries ago. She also dug up some refutations:

“Dr. Duane Carr – Professor of Surgery at the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, said this: “Smoking does not discolor the lung.”

Dr. Victor Buhler, Pathologist at St. Joseph Hospital in Kansas City: “I have examined thousands of lungs both grossly and microscopically. I cannot tell you from exmining a lung whether or not its former host had smoked.”

Dr. Sheldon Sommers, Pathologist and Director of Laboratories at Lenox Hill Hospital, in New York: “…it is not possible grossly or microscopically, or in any other way known to me, to distinguish between the lung of a smoker or a nonsmoker. Blackening of lungs is from carbon particles, and smoking tobacco does not introduce carbon particles into the lung.”

And Brigitte even found a Youtube video:

There is even this (in German) in which a forensic medic states that these “tar” lungs do not exist.

Rich White’s Smoke Screens reports the same:

This was confirmed by Dr Jan Zeldenrust, a Dutch pathologist for the Government of Holland from 1951 – 1984. In a television interview in the 1980’s he stated that, translated from Dutch, “I could never see on a pair of lungs if they belonged to a smoker or non-smoker. I can see clearly the difference between sick and healthy lungs. The only black lungs I’ve seen are from peat-workers and coal miners, never from smokers”.

Nevertheless, the black lungs are all over cigarette packets these days.

And black lung disease (or pneumoconiosis) is a real disease. Coal miners get it.

So where does the smokers’ black lung idea come from?

Part of the answer can be found in a photo-essay on Medicinenet:

This photo essay will focus on smoker’s lung. The term “smoker’s lung” refers to the structural and functional abnormalities (diseases) in the lung caused by cigarette smoking. First, the normal structure and function of the lung will be described and illustrated. Then, the structural and functional abnormalities caused by smoking will be described and illustrated.

  A bit further on the effect of emphysema on lungs is described.

As a result, emphysema also disrupts the normal blood supply. Figure 4 contrasts the nasty appearance of a smoker’s emphysematous lung with a normal lung.


So it’s emphysema that causes the nasty appearance of a smoker’s emphysematous lung.

It continues:

As you can imagine, cigarette smoke contains many impurities that are inhaled in great numbers directly into the lung. For this reason, the alveolar spaces of the smoker contain numerous scavenger cells (macrophages) that are filled with engulfed (phagocytized) particles of impurities and debris, as illustrated in Figure 5.

Under the microscope, with this high magnification, you can actually see the black and brown engulfed particles in the alveolar scavenger cells. Indeed, smoker’s lung may have so much of this particulate material that the lung looks gray-black to the naked eye. So, most of the time, you don’t need a microscope to tell if someone is or was a heavy smoker. A naked eye examination of a smoker’s lung usually will reveal an enlarged gray-black lung with enlarged air spaces (the emphysema, as you saw in Figure 4 and will see again in Figure 8).

I’m not sure why people are asked to ‘imagine’ what’s in tobacco smoke. But since the emphysematous lung has simply been renamed the ‘smoker’s lung’, maybe it’s necessary to explain why it’s turned grey-black. And it’s that imaginary stuff in tobacco smoke that is conjured up to explain it.

The lie hinges on first asserting that smoking causes emphysema (it may do, or it may not), and secondly asserting that emphysema turns lungs grey-black (it probably does), and then finally dropping the connecting middle term of ‘emphysema’,  and asserting that smoking turns lungs grey-black. Or it’s just calling emphysematous lungs ‘smokers’ lungs’.

A parallel false ascription might be found elsewhere. People who visit Delhi may get food poisoning from ingesting bacteria. The food poisoning may cause vomiting and so on. But if the ‘bacteria’ link is missed out, and the malady is just called ‘Delhi belly’ (as it often is), it may mislead people into believing that it’s visiting Delhi (or Indian restaurants) which is the root of the trouble – although in fact most visitors to Delhi (and Indian restaurants) don’t suffer such ill-effects, and there are lots of other places in the world other than Delhi where you can contract ‘Delhi belly’.

It’s a thoroughly dishonest and disreputable mis-attribution of a disease. It pins the disease on a particular social group: smokers. And it makes it their disease, and nobody else’s – even though not everyone who gets emphysema is a smoker, and not all smokers get emphysema. But at least we may now see why pathologists aren’t finding grey-black smokers’ lungs: they didn’t have emphysema.

But this doesn’t seem to be the only way the black lung lie is propagated. There are also the pigs’ lungs used in demonstrations. I even found an ad for one:

The accompanying text helpfully explains:

The inflatable swine lungs have been stained realistically and then specially preserved by the BioFlex odorless, nontoxic process that retains the texture and elasticity of fresh lungs. The lungs dramatically and unforgettably demonstrate the effects of prolonged smoking. A palpable simulated internal tumor and a physical simulated external tumor encourage students to feel the texture of the lungs, and to remember that smoking is a known cause of lung cancer.

So firstly they’re pig lungs. And secondly they’ve been preserved and stained realistically. And simulated internal and external tumours have been added. And all to demonstrate the effects of prolonged smoking!  It beggars belief.

No doubt the students aren’t told any of this, and are led to believe that they’re looking at real human ‘smokers’ lungs’.

There are even discussions of the effectiveness of such imagery.

Marketing researchers at the University of Arkansas, Villanova University and Marquette University surveyed more than 500 U.S. and Canadian smokers and found that the highly graphic images of the negative consequences of smoking have the greatest impact on smokers’ intentions to quit. The most graphic images, such as those showing severe mouth diseases, including disfigured, blackened and cancerous tissue, evoked fear about the consequences of smoking and thus influenced consumer intentions to quit.

“These results suggest that there appears to be little downside on intentions to quit from using extremely graphic pictorial depictions of the negative health outcomes due to smoking,” said Scot Burton, co-author of the study and marketing professor in the Sam M. Walton College of Business.

In fact, there may be a downside from using such graphic images, if they have been fraudulently obtained (a consideration which doesn’t appear to have crossed the minds of the marketing researchers). And we’ve just established two methods by which they are fraudulently obtained.

And the downside is that, when it is shown that they’re fraudulent, the people who publish them will be accused of fraud, of twisting logic and manufacturing evidence. And when that happens, people will cease to believe not just the fraudulent evidence they have produced, but everything else that they assert too. They will lose all their credibility. Nobody will believe a word they say.

That’s quite a big downside, I think. And it’s a downside that doesn’t even seem to have occurred to them.

It doesn’t seem to have occurred to the mass media that help propagate these lies that people will cease to believe a word they say either.

Nor does it seem to have occurred to the medical profession which allows these lies to be propagated unchallenged that people will cease to believe them too.

There’s an awful lot of downside waiting to go down.

Update: The lying is deliberate. From the Delaware News Journal:

Pankiw described the centerpiece of his anti-smoking display as the diseased lung of a 150-pound man who smoked for 15 years. Actually, it was a pig’s lung shot full of various carcinogens on purpose, but, Pankiw said later, his lesson was made stronger by not passing along that tidbit of truth.

And furthermore smokers’ lungs are routinely used in lung transplants:

In the UK donors with a positive smoking history provide nearly 40% of the lungs available for transplantation, according to the study’s lead author Professor Robert Bonser, of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham and University of Birmingham. He said in a press statement: “Our data show that patients awaiting lung transplantation in the UK are likely to survive longer if they are willing to accept lungs from any suitable donor, irrespective of smoking history…

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87 Responses to The Black Lung Lie

  1. harleyrider1978 says:

    The Black Pig Lung Hoax

    It was an outright bald-faced lie.

    “Pankiw described the centerpiece of his anti-smoking display as the diseased lung of a 150-pound man who smoked for 15 years. Actually, it was a pig’s lung shot full of various carcinogens on purpose, but, Pankiw said later, his lesson was made stronger by not passing along that tidbit of truth.”

    The Black Pig Lung Hoax

    Here is an “oldie but goodie”. This is the article everyone always talks about, but is so difficult to find: April 5, 2001. It was an outright bald-faced lie.

    “Pankiw described the centerpiece of his anti-smoking display as the diseased lung of a 150-pound man who smoked for 15 years. Actually, it was a pig’s lung shot full of various carcinogens on purpose, but, Pankiw said later, his lesson was made stronger by not passing along that tidbit of truth.”


    Chris Watson, vice president of the British Transplantation Society, told CNN that 49 percent of last year’s lung donors in the UK were smokers.

    “We’re not in the luxurious position in transplantation to turn down organs because they’re not absolutely perfect — there are very few perfect organs,” he said.

  2. harleyrider1978 says:

    Only $152.00 American
    Smokefree and Smoker’s Lung
    Product size: 61 x 48.5 cm Order code: M159

    Simple but effective way of showing how smoking damages the lungs. Comparing the air sacs of the lungs to bubble wrap, this 3D model of 2 lungs shows the bronchial air passages into two bubble wrap lungs. The smokefree lung is pink and healthy with all the air sacs intact. The smoker lung is black from tar, has holes burned into the air sacs to represent emphysema and has cancerous growths and a pool of phlegm. The background chart explains the differences between the smokefree and smoker lungs and this is explored further with a handout called Love your lungs. The box is covered with an acrylic cover and ready to hang.

  3. Yep! Harley’s got it perfect! I talked about it in Brains too:


    To be sure, positive emotions are not the only ones that can be appealed to. Fear and disgust work just as well in the hands of a skilled manipulator. One Crusader, a feeder at the public trough of Delaware National Guard’s Counterdrug Task Force, likes to scare impressionable children by holding up a blackened, bloody, and diseased looking lung in classrooms while explaining that the cancerous thing came from a man who had smoked for just 15 years.
    In reality, it is simply a pig’s lung shot full of carcinogens and prepared carefully to look disgusting, gruesome, and scary… not a human lung at all. The National Guard Captain explained to the reporter covering the story that his lesson was made stronger “by not passing along that tidbit of truth” (James Merriweather. Delaware News Journal. 04/05/01).


    btw, those pics on the emphysema lungs? The only reason the “smoker’s lung” looks any grosser than the nonsmoker’s lung that I could see what that they’d colored it red so it looked like blood.

    – MJM

  4. mikef317 says:

    These “experts” have their own version of reality, created by deluded minds, missionary zeal, and Adobe Photoshop. The link below is about diabetes, but the tobacco ads are equally bogus (e.g., the corpse on a table in the morgue is a live actor playing a part, just like a TV show). Screwballs exaggerate everything; they simply can’t stick to the facts.

    Hope the link works; non-subscribers only get limited access to the website.

    • nisakiman says:

      This is a subject that greatly interests me, but information is very hard to find / unearth. There are references to where images have been posed or photoshopped for the warning labels on cigarette packets, but I can only seem to scratch the surface. There was this article in The Washington Times for instance:

      I wrote to the author, Charles Hunt, asking if he had any more info, or if he could point me to the agency contracted to supply the images, but received no reply. To be honest, given the attitude to smokers and smoking in the US, I wasn’t altogether surprised at the lack of response to my email. For all I know he might well be a rabid anti who thinks that the photoshopped images are a great idea, and would rather poke himself in the eye with a sharp stick than point me to any damning evidence of chicanery.

      The black lung thing seems to be the only one that can be completely verified as a fake image. So far.

      I keep digging, in the hope I’ll strike gold one day!

      • Frank Davis says:

        I doubt if it’s ever possible to find out whether a particular photo is of the real thing or of something that looks like the real thing. Probably Hunt doesn’t know either. But judging by the attitude of the market research people, they’re just looking for impact rather than honesty.

  5. hangemall says:

    I had an idea a while ago. It goes something like this.

    You print “If this Lie is acceptable…

    Then you have the picture of the lungs and caption from the anti-smoking warning above.

    Then you print …is this truth acceptable?”

    Show a picture of your favourite anti-smoker with the caption “Dissembling, deceitful, amoral waste of public money space and oxygen.”

  6. magnetic01 says:

    The “black lung” myth is just one of the inflammatory myths by the “society-fixer” fanatics/zealots/extremists. Another that was highlighted a few threads ago is the “Chapman Trick”, aggressively attempting to convince particularly nonsmokers that they are being “poisoned” by smokers, exposed to vaporized ant poison, toilet cleaner, rocket fuel, car battery fluid, anti-freeze, etc. through SHS.
    See comments sections:

    What other than dangerously disturbed minds would want to fraudulently convince a larger group that a minority group is recklessly “poisoning” them?

    If we consider the Godber Blueprint, through the 80s, the fanatics dispensed with claims remotely tied to facts. They promoted using highly inflammatory terms such as “poison”, “toxic”, “kill”, “death” that went far beyond the implications of statistical information. The fanatics played very much to the media; they advocated slogans, not for their truthfulness but for their attention-grabbing potential, i.e., propaganda It’s a constant play on fear and hatred in fostering aversion/revulsion to the “undesirable” behavior (e.g., smoking). There it is plainly in the Chapman Trick – “Look for usages that will connote revulsion or concern”. The goal of inflammatory propaganda is to coerce/terrify/terrorize targeted groups into [social engineered] conformity.

    And we also know that the adoption of the fanatics’ perverse fantasy world is financially lucrative for government through extortionate taxes. The fanatics themselves also demand a cut of those taxes to further “educate” the public and keep these disturbed minds in comfortable emplyment; and Gigantic Pharma fuels the derangement in “cultivating a market” for its useless “cessation wares”. There are quite a number of groups financially profiting from this fraud. In other industries it would be referred to as racketeering.

    The fanatics indeed need to be outed for their major, much repeated, inflammatory lies. The questions also need to be asked as to what sort of mentality would justify seriously messing with people’s minds in order to impose their baseless preferences, and what sort of mentality would accept this derangement as ‘wise counsel”? There is more than ample evidence from the last few hundred years that the rabid antismoking mentality is a serious mental disorder. It’s a masquerade for deep-seated conflict. It represents a cluster of dysfunction not limited to acute fixation (monomania), Narcissism (self-absorbed), obsession with control (megalomania), histrionics, rage, and a “god complex” – delusions of grandeur, infallibility, and benevolence. These dysfunctions avoid correction – are held together – through pathological lying. It should be obvious that propagandists have absolutely no regard for mental health; the manipulation of belief (promoting mental dysfunction) is simply a means to a questionable end.

  7. magnetic01 says:

    Frank…… dear Frank, my comment has ended up in “the can” again. Could you please check.

  8. magnetic01 says:

    I’ve provided some excerpts below from the “sweet” work by Adolf on the art of propaganda. Adolf didn’t invent propaganda, but he was an excellent student of the art of mass manipulation. See if you can recognize in these excerpts the activity of contemporary antismoking. Godber and his cronies declared war on the tobacco industry and tobacco users, i.e., defined as “the enemy”, back in the 1970s, continuing a eugenics tradition. In war, all those not supporting you or that are defending the enemy are also “the enemy”. Only the position of antismoking, which seeks the eradication of tobacco-use from the world, is heroic, righteous, and moral. Look at the Godber Blueprint. You will see such words used in antismoker documents. There is the recommendation of using highly inflammatory terms and slogans (not implied by data). This is not science but the propaganda of political activism. “Creative epidemiology” is the same thing; the Chapman Trick, the same thing; “black lung”, the same thing; “what do they need to hear to persuade/cause/force them to make it happen?”, the same thing – salesmen of derangement for ideological and financial profit. The propaganda goal is to play on the emotions, particularly of nonsmokers – typically irrational fear, revulsion, and hatred – and to give the gullible a sense of promoting a “better world” by enthusiastically boarding the bandwagon and parroting the rhetoric.

  9. magnetic01 says:

    Excerpts from Mein Kampf (Adolf Hitler) Chapter 6: War Propaganda

    The situation is the same in regard to what we understand by the word, propaganda. The purpose of propaganda is not the personal instruction of the individual, but rather to attract public attention to certain things, the importance of which can be brought home to the masses only by this means.
    Here the art of propaganda consists in putting a matter so clearly and forcibly before the minds of the people as to create a general conviction regarding the reality of a certain fact, the necessity of certain things and the just character of something that is essential. But as this art is not an end in itself and because its purpose must be exactly that of the advertisement poster, to attract the attention of the masses and not by any means to dispense individual instructions to those who already have an educated
    opinion on things or who wish to form such an opinion on grounds of objective study–because that is not the purpose of propaganda, it must appeal to the feelings of the public rather than to their reasoning powers. (p.155-156)

    The art of propaganda consists precisely in being able to awaken the imagination of the public through an appeal to their feelings, in finding the appropriate psychological form that will arrest the attention and appeal to the hearts of the national masses. That this is not understood by those among us whose wits are supposed to have been sharpened to the highest pitch is only another proof of their vanity or mental inertia.
    Once we have understood how necessary it is to concentrate the persuasive forces of propaganda on the broad masses of the people, the following lessons result therefrom:
    That it is a mistake to organize the direct propaganda as if it were a manifold system of scientific instruction. (p.156)

    The receptive powers of the masses are very restricted, and their understanding is feeble. On the other hand, they quickly forget. Such being the case, all effective propaganda must be confined to a few bare essentials and those must be expressed as far as possible in stereotyped formulas. These slogans should be persistently repeated until the very last individual has come to grasp the idea that has been put forward. If this principle be forgotten and if an attempt be made to be abstract and general, the propaganda will turn out ineffective; for the public will not be able to digest or retain what is offered to them in this way. Therefore, the greater the scope of the message that has to be presented, the more necessary it is for the propaganda to discover that plan of action which is psychologically the most efficient. (p.156)

    The worst of all was that our people did not understand the very first condition which has to be fulfilled in every kind of propaganda; namely, a systematically one-sided attitude towards every problem that has to be dealt with.(p.157)

    The aim of propaganda is not to try to pass judgment on conflicting rights, giving each its due, but exclusively to emphasize the right which we are asserting. Propaganda must not investigate the truth objectively and, in so far as it is favourable to the other side, present it according to the theoretical rules of justice; yet it must present only that aspect of the truth which is favourable to its own side. (p.158)

    The broad masses of the people are not made up of diplomats or professors of public jurisprudence nor simply of persons who are able to form reasoned judgment in given cases, but a vacillating crowd of human children who are constantly wavering between one idea and another. As soon as our own propaganda made the slightest suggestion that the enemy had a certain amount of justice on his side, then we laid down the basis on which the justice of our own cause could be questioned. The masses are not in a position to discern where the enemy’s fault ends and where our own begins. In such a case they become hesitant and distrustful, especially when the enemy does not make the same mistake but heaps all the blame on his adversary.(p.158)

    No matter what an amount of talent employed in the organization of propaganda, it will have no result if due account is not taken of these fundamental principles. Propaganda must be limited to a few simple themes and these must be represented again and again. Here, as in innumerable other cases, perseverance is the first and most important condition of success. (p.159)

    It is not the purpose of propaganda to create a series of alterations in sentiment with a view to pleasing these blase gentry. Its chief function is to convince the masses, whose slowness of understanding needs to be given time in order that they may absorb information; and only constant repetition will finally succeed in imprinting an idea on the memory of the crowd.
    Every change that is made in the subject of a propagandist message must always emphasize the same conclusion. The leading slogan must of course be illustrated in many ways and from several angles, but in the end one must always return to the assertion of the same formula. In this way alone can propaganda be consistent and dynamic in its effects.
    Only by following these general lines and sticking to them steadfastly, with uniform and concise emphasis, can final success be reached. Then one will be rewarded by the surprising and almost incredible results that such a persistent policy secures. (p.160-161)

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      No matter what an amount of talent employed in the organization of propaganda, it will have no result if due account is not taken of these fundamental principles. Propaganda must be limited to a few simple themes and these must be represented again and again. Here, as in innumerable other cases, perseverance is the first and most important condition of success. (p.159)

      Jun 27, 2006 – … There is No Safe Level of Second-Hand Smoke : The U.S. Surgeon General, … RICHARD CARMONA: The first report on this subject was issued by one of …. a smoking section, and you’re sitting in the non-smoking section.

      Hitler would be proud!

      • magnetic01 says:

        “No safe level” of tobacco smoke is another much-repeated inflammatory myth, and it didn’t originate with the Office of the Surgeon-General. An early reference to “no safe level” is in 1992 – see Godber Blueprint. It’s often the case that claims that eventually make it through to the public were originally floated at the World Conferences on Smoking or Health.

        Working Papers in Support of the 8th World Conference on Tobacco or Health: Building a Tobacco-Free World. March 30 – April 3, 1992
        Buenos Aires, Argentina

        The scientific evidence linking ETS to death and disease is clear and overwhelming : There is no safe level of exposure for the carcinogens found in tobacco smoke. Victims of ETS are called involuntary smokers or passive smokers . The only way to protect people from the dangers of ETS is to keep tobacco smoke out of our indoor air . The prevention of involuntary exposure to ETS should be a priority for tobacco control advocates worldwide. (p.79)

        Just in these few lines is much revealed. The fanatics are referring to “clear and overwhelming” evidence a year before even the [fraudulent] EPA Report on ETS. They’re already referring to “victims” of ETS. They’re using another inflammatory myth of “passive smokers”. And, they’re making the fraudulent claim of “no safe level of exposure for the carcinogens found in tobacco smoke”.

        And there’s another important point. Although attempting to manufacture ETS “danger”, the title of the conference betrays the actual social-engineering intent – BUILDING A TOBACCO-FREE WORLD.

  10. harleyrider1978 says:

    O/T but wow

    Bailout funds for the EU in 2013

    Mark Urbo

    So let’s see here in rough round numbers: € Billions [b]

    €175 b Immediate for Greece (Gov.)
    €100 b Immediate for Spain (Banks)
    €010 b Immediate for Cyprus (Gov.) [Maybe Russia?]
    €010 b Before end of ‘12 for Ireland (Gov. & Banks & Debt)
    €010 b Before end of ‘12 for Portugal (Gov. & Banks & Debt)
    €075 b Before end of ‘12 for Greece (Gov. & Banks)
    €500 b Before end of ‘12 for Spain (Gov. & Regions)
    €300 b Before end of ‘12 for Italy (Gov. & Banks)
    €100 b Before end of ‘12 for Other (Gov., Banks, Debt Mgmt)
    €050 b 2013 for Ireland (Gov. & Banks)
    €050 b 2013 for Portugal (Gov. & Banks)
    €200 b 2013 for Greece (Gov. & Banks)
    €300 b 2013 for Spain (Gov. & Banks)
    €500 b 2013 for Italy (Gov. & Banks)
    €150 b 2013 for Other (Gov., Banks, Debt Mgmt)
    €2.53 trillion Total (Est. thru 2013)

    Is this about right ? Missing something ?? Where is this going to come from ???

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      Frank theyve already stolen all the private pension fund money pretty much. The Euro and American dollar swaps have been going on for quite some time now to shore up the EURO value. The IMF World bank have been begging for more bailout funds from Owebummer and this last January Owebama had promised up to 4 trillion in EU bailout funds but now I cant find any of that story anywhere on the net! Something is up…………

      • harleyrider1978 says:

        The Eurozone Crisis and the Future of Monetary Unions
        Michael Jeffers
        6 August 2012

        What this means for NAFTA, MERCOSUR, ASEAN, and other organisations is that they may never evolve into highly integrated entities like the EU. This will surely turn out to be a blessing given that these areas function perfectly well without a single currency anyway. Rather than form monetary unions, they will learn lessons from the eurozone and keep their own currencies as safeguards against the poor fiscal policies of their neighbours so that when a crisis does occur, they will not be exposed to the same level of contagion and will not find themselves bailing out weaker member states. The free trade areas will remain but governments will be likely to be wary of integrating further.

      • jon says:

        You finally tipped your hand. The black helicopters will be coming for you any time…. but maybe you’ll die from lung cancer first.

    • Frank Davis says:

      Interesting Bloomberg link. But where do all those numbers come from?

  11. Rose says:

    Do I detect a trace of visible compassion at last?

    Hospital’s smoking ban up for review

    “We discourage smoking because it is very harmful to health, but at the same time we recognise that many smokers are addicted and will feel they need a cigarette while at the hospital, especially if someone they care about is extremely unwell.

    “We also don’t like to see patients from the wards leaving the site to stand on street corners in the cold and rain.

    “It’s a subject that many people have strong views on and we want to hear both sides – in particular, whether or not people think the current policy is working and, if not, what we should do about it.”

    It’s not your fault.

    Patients face discharge from hospital in total smoking ban – 2005

    “Patients caught smoking inside or outside hospitals face being discharged under new government legislation, which will abolish hospital smoking rooms and encourage a total ban in all grounds.

    The controversial “zero tolerance” plans are part of a new Bill, which will make all hospitals smoke-free by the end of 2006.
    In London, the deadline will be a year earlier, health officials announced last week.

    Patients too frail to endure low temperatures outside will be offered “nicotine replacement therapy” in the form of gum and patches. Other measures will include putting up “older person” signs around hospitals for patients crossing busy roads to smoke.”

    “There will be no trouble at all.
    The smokers, meek as lambs, will either stand obediently outside or refrain from smoking”

    “ will find you have become part of a sad, excluded, sheepish army of no-hopers, the huddled masses who loiter, sucking deeply on their drug of choice.”

    But the only place they really do that, having no other option, is outside your hospital and such treatment of the elderly and the sick reflects so badly on the NHS.

    They didn’t carry the public with them,did they? Forgot that smokers love and are loved by non-smoking family and friends who don’t appreciate you making Grandad stand outside the hospital grounds at the side of the road in his pyjamas.

    I know you didn’t want to do it, but they made you.
    They’ve gone now, they were thrown out of government two years ago.

    • The ban on patients and visitors smoking in hospital grounds is a disguised request and cannot be enforced. In practice, it applies only to hospital employees, who face disciplnary action for ignoring it. Not that these facts make the hospitals sentiments and actions any less despicable.

  12. beobrigitte says:

    Do I detect a trace of visible compassion at last?

    Hospital’s smoking ban up for review

    I wish we could think of compassion, although compassion would not be out of place. In 2007 I managed to tear a ligament in my thumb which required surgery and one overnight stay in a local hospital. Coming round from the anesthetics, naturally I made my way to get some coffee (from a nurse I know on another ward there) and tried to venture outside for a smoke. I ended up asking one of the porters for a halfways decent smoking place – lucky for me he was a smoker and helped me out.
    Back on the ward the old lady in the bed next to me all of a sudden spoke: “Have you been for a smoke?” I wish I could do that but I can’t walk….”
    For a moment I was baffled – then I just said: “right, we can sort this!!!” I nicked one of the hospital wheel chairs from the next ward, with the help of another patient we managed to seat the old lady comfortably and, using my left hand and the plaster cast up to my elbow on my right hand, pushing her past the nurses station. One of the nurses there asked what I was doing, so I told them, that the lady would like nothing more than to just have a cigarette and that she can have one now with me!!!
    I expected an argument – instead I received help, pushing the old lady to where I told the nurse to and we both stayed out there for quite a few smokes and a really good chat.
    I have often since thought about her and I hope there were others who did show some compassion for this old smoker.

    The smoking ban in hospital grounds has never worked; the porter who helped me find a halfways decent smoking place also told me that they (the porters) were told to police it, which they refused point blank, saying: “I most certainly will not approach ANYONE smoking; for all I know they might have been with a dying relative to the end – who would be so insensitive?” I answered at that point in time: “well, ask our Labour friends, they obviously do not have a problem with that”.

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  18. Goltar says:

    Reblogged this on The Boar & Bones Inn and commented:
    Cercando di sfatare uno dei tanti miti che girano per la rete ho trovato questo articolo molto interessante sui famosi “polmoni da fumatore”.

  19. Ryan says:

    And furthermore smokers’ lungs are routinely used in lung transplants:

    In the UK donors with a positive smoking history provide nearly 40% of the lungs available for transplantation, according to the study’s lead author Professor Robert Bonser, of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham and University of Birmingham. He said in a press statement: “Our data show that patients awaiting lung transplantation in the UK are likely to survive longer if they are willing to accept lungs from any suitable donor, irrespective of smoking history…

    I don’t really see the point you’re trying to make here. If it came down to flat out dying or getting a damaged (whether or not smoking damages lungs or not) body part and surviving longer, I’m pretty sure almost everyone would chose to take the damaged body part. Of course they’d survive longer if they’re willing to accept lungs from a larger pool of donors. I’d rather have an old junker for a car than to have no car.

    • beobrigitte says:

      I don’t really see the point you’re trying to make here. If it came down to flat out dying or getting a damaged (whether or not smoking damages lungs or not) body part and surviving longer, I’m pretty sure almost everyone would chose to take the damaged body part.

      What “damaged” body part would you choose? Are you sure you would undergo the same again once you heard you could have an “undamaged” part, even though the implanted “damaged” part works perfectly well?
      Are we looking at recipients having the option of wasting well meant donations, thus depriving others the option of survival?

      – Double-lung transplants can be successful with donor lungs from heavy smokers.
      – Short-term and long-term survival rates are not necessarily impacted by donor smoking status.

      However, we smokers can simply be asked to stop donating organs.

      Just someone explain this (same article!!!!)
      Death from malignancy is no greater in recipients who received lungs from carefully selected heavy smokers.
      He added that communication is also very important. “We need to discuss with potential recipients the possible higher risk of developing lung cancer and obtain an informed consent specific for heavy smoking history,” he said.
      Clearly here we have contradicting information.

      Can you lot make up your mind? In my family we hold no donor cards anymore as we do not wish to disrespectfully treated by anti-smoker’s media hate campaigns in times of grief.

      What we give is not to be wasted and less even to be classified as second best. I will not allow you to treat me as “second best” in life; less even after my death.

      I don’t really see the point you’re trying to make here. ,/i>
      This is something I would like to ask you.

  20. beobrigitte says:

    I don’t really see the point you’re trying to make here.
    This is something I would like to ask you.

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  24. harleyrider1978 says:

    This pretty well destroys the Myth of second hand smoke:

    Lungs from pack-a-day smokers safe for transplant, study finds.

    By JoNel Aleccia, Staff Writer, NBC News.

    Using lung transplants from heavy smokers may sound like a cruel joke, but a new study finds that organs taken from people who puffed a pack a day for more than 20 years are likely safe.

    What’s more, the analysis of lung transplant data from the U.S. between 2005 and 2011 confirms what transplant experts say they already know: For some patients on a crowded organ waiting list, lungs from smokers are better than none.

    “I think people are grateful just to have a shot at getting lungs,” said Dr. Sharven Taghavi, a cardiovascular surgical resident at Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia, who led the new study………………………

    Ive done the math here and this is how it works out with second ahnd smoke and people inhaling it!

    The 16 cities study conducted by the U.S. DEPT OF ENERGY and later by Oakridge National laboratories discovered:

    Cigarette smoke, bartenders annual exposure to smoke rises, at most, to the equivalent of 6 cigarettes/year.


    A bartender would have to work in second hand smoke for 2433 years to get an equivalent dose.

    Then the average non-smoker in a ventilated restaurant for an hour would have to go back and forth each day for 119,000 years to get an equivalent 20 years of smoking a pack a day! Pretty well impossible ehh!

  25. harleyrider1978 says:

    Human lungs ‘brush’ themselves clean of contaminants
    Friday, September 07, 2012 by: David Gutierrez, staff writer

    Human lungs contain a tiny network of constantly moving “brushes” that flush contaminants out of the respiratory system, according to research conducted by scientists from the University of North Carolina and published in the journal Science.

    Scientists have known for a long time that the respiratory system protects itself by means of a coating of mucus, which is sticky enough to trap pollutants and keep them from reaching the body’s cells. When needed, the body can expel this mucus through a runny nose or a cough.

    “The air we breathe isn’t exactly clean, and we take in many dangerous elements with every breath,” said lead researcher Michael Rubinstein.

    “We need a mechanism to remove all the junk we breathe in, and the way it’s done is with a very sticky gel, called mucus, that catches these particles and removes them with the help of tiny cilia. The cilia are constantly beating, even while we sleep.

    “In a coordinated fashion, they push mucus, containing foreign objects, out of the lungs, and we either swallow it or spit it out. These cilia even beat for a few hours after we die. If they stopped, we’d be flooded with mucus that provides a fertile breeding ground for bacteria.”

    But until now, researchers have never understood why the mucus does not stick to or even infiltrate the respiratory cells themselves. The foremost theory, known as the “gel-on-liquid model,” posited that an as-yet-undiscovered watery “periciliary” layer kept mucus and cilia separate. The problem with this theory was always that to the best of scientific knowledge, mucus should eventually dissolve into such a watery layer, not remain separate.

    “We can’t have a watery layer separating sticky mucus from our cells because there is an osmotic pressure in the mucus that causes it to expand in water,” Rubinstein says. “So what is really keeping the mucus from sticking to our cells?”

    To get to the bottom of the mystery, the researchers used modern imaging techniques to examine the interior of the lungs. They found a dense network of brush-like structures that sit atop the cilia. These brushes are composed of protective molecules that keep both mucus and contaminants from getting to the respiratory cells beneath. These molecules also function as a second line of defense against viruses or bacteria that manage to penetrate the mucus.

    Stephen Spiro of the British Lung Foundation said the findings could help significantly improve scientific understanding of lung function.

    “Mucus has a complex biological make-up and forms a vital part of the lungs’ defense mechanism,” he said.

    “Research such as this helps our understanding [of] how this system works, and of the complex mechanisms deep within our lungs which protect us from the atmosphere we breathe in.”

    Rubinstein and his fellow researchers noted that their findings may also explain previously mysterious lung disorders from asthma to cystic fibrosis (CF) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). These diseases may stem from a collapse of the protective brushes.

    “We found that there is a specific condition, below which the brush is healthy and cells are happy,” Rubinstein said. “But above this ideal condition, in diseases like CF or COPD, the brush becomes compressed and actually prevents the normal cilia beating and healthy flow of mucus.”

    In such conditions, the mucus would then stick directly to the lung’s cells.

    “The collapse of this brush is what can lead to immobile mucus and result in infection, inflammation and eventually the destruction of lung tissue and the loss of lung function,” Rubinstein said. “But our new model should guide researchers to develop novel therapies to treat lung diseases and provide them with biomarkers to track the effectiveness of those therapies.”

    Learn more:

    Learn more:

    • Roz says:

      I am surprised at all of this. Has anyone here been a smoker? My mom smoked a pack a day for twenty years and she constantly coughed up grey/black matter. She eventually quit and her withdrawals were horrendous. After that, she felt better than she had in that 20 years. Her lung functions improved dramatically. The images may or may not be zdoctored”, but smoking is incredibly dangerous, jt as breathing in any combustable material would be. The same goes for smoking pot. I smoked pot for a long time and coughed up nasty stuff every morning. So, I totally get the over hype, but, smoking isn’t safe, again, just as smoking a newspaper isn’t good, or smoking an actual tree branch. Carcinogens come mainly from burning carbon, which is in everything organic. This link is simply about barbecue carcinogens. If one is smoking more than their lungs can eliminate by coughing, it will build up.

      • beobrigitte says:

        he eventually quit and her withdrawals were horrendous.

        Ah, REALLY???? How come I could not be arsed looking for a smoking area after 15 hours not smoking? It’s supposed to be an addiction and cold sweat is supposed to kick in….
        In actual fact I had another flight for 1 1/2 hours at the end and after that I picked up my car, not arsed about a smoke all the way home. But then, I made a pot of REAL coffee and finally lit up.

        If one is smoking more than their lungs can eliminate by coughing, it will build up.
        You, I and the rest of the world know that this is bullsh*t.

      • harleyrider1978 says:

        “Barbecues poison the air with toxins and could cause cancer, research suggests.
        A study by the French environmental campaigning group Robin des Bois found that a typical two-hour barbecue can release the same level of dioxins as up to 220,000 cigarettes.

        Dioxins are a group of chemicals known to increase the likelihood of cancer.

        The figures were based on grilling four large steaks, four turkey cuts and eight large sausages.”

        • harleyrider1978 says:

          Don’t fret over list of cancer ‘risks’

          “We are being bombarded” with messages about the dangers posed by common things in our lives, yet most exposures “are not at a level that are going to cause cancer,” said Dr. Len Lichtenfeld, the American Cancer Society’s deputy chief medical officer.
          Linda Birnbaum agrees. She is a toxicologist who heads the government agency that just declared styrene, an ingredient in fiberglass boats and Styrofoam, a likely cancer risk.
          “Let me put your mind at ease right away about Styrofoam,” she said. Levels of styrene that leach from food containers “are hundreds if not thousands of times lower than have occurred in the occupational setting,” where the chemical in vapor form poses a possible risk to workers.
          Carcinogens are things that can cause cancer, but that label doesn’t mean that they will or that they pose a risk to anyone exposed to them in any amount at any time.

          Now,Im glad to see the ACS admitting to the dose response relationship finally!

          So now we understand why the following is factual:

          are hundreds if not thousands of times lower than have occurred in the occupational setting,” where the chemical in vapor form poses a possible risk to workers.

          Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology, Vol. 14, No. 1. (August 1991), pp. 88-105.

          ETS between 10,000- and 100,000-fold less than estimated average MSS-RSP doses for active smokers

          OSHA the components in tobacco smoke are diluted below existing Permissible Exposure Levels (PELS.) as referenced in the Air Contaminant Standard (29 CFR 1910.1000)…It would be very rare to find a workplace with so much smoking that any individual PEL would be exceeded


        • harleyrider1978 says:

          According to independent Public and Health Policy Research group, Littlewood & Fennel of Austin, Tx, on the subject of secondhand smoke……..

          They did the figures for what it takes to meet all of OSHA’S minimum PEL’S on shs/ets…….Did it ever set the debate on fire.

          They concluded that:

          All this is in a small sealed room 9×20 and must occur in ONE HOUR.

          For Benzo[a]pyrene, 222,000 cigarettes

          “For Acetone, 118,000 cigarettes

          “Toluene would require 50,000 packs of simultaneously smoldering cigarettes.

          Acetaldehyde or Hydrazine, more than 14,000 smokers would need to light up.

          “For Hydroquinone, “only” 1250 cigarettes

          For arsenic 2 million 500,000 smokers at one time

          The same number of cigarettes required for the other so called chemicals in shs/ets will have the same outcomes.

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  28. scotchpie says:

    As a vaper myself I don’t want to start a flame war here but I use to work in pathology and yes that means I’ve seen a few autopsies in my time. All the old chronic smokers that ended up on the slab I’m afraid to say had blackened lungs. Not pitch black but certainly a dark greyish colour. In fact if they were fresh you could even squeeze the tar out of them.

    Just saying.

    • Frank Davis says:

      Well they wouldn’t have been a nice healthy pink colour if they were dead, would they? When I saw my non-smoking dead mother, she was a rather greyish colour too.

    • beobrigitte says:

      …but I use to work in pathology and yes that means I’ve seen a few autopsies in my time. All the old chronic smokers that ended up on the slab I’m afraid to say had blackened lungs.

      “OLD chronic smokers”? I thought smoking kills? Old age certainly kills, we are designed that way!

      In fact if they were fresh you could even squeeze the tar out of them.

      Nice try to cause a rift between tobacco smokers and vapers. Doesn’t work, though.

  29. Rehab says:

    That’s unbelievable – never realized they done this. That’s pretty interesting about the pigs lungs being dyed to ‘simulate’ the supposed real thing. I wonder how long this will be kept quit for. Thanks for sharing this.

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  31. Fletcher V says:

    OMG really? You people need to find another conspiracy to lap up. I searched for a few of the names above and they were all lap dogs for big tobacco like 40 or 50 years ago. Those are the guys who had reason to lie. They were bought and paid for by tobacco money. The fact that one or a few guys made displays with dyed pig lungs shouldn’t be a surprise. Few people would be able to get a set of diseased human lungs for display. It certainly doesn’t indicate conspiracy. Further, emphysema is not a “disease”. It is a description of conditions which can arise in the lungs. – Anybody want to guess what the leading cause of emphysema is?
    I appreciate that y’all like to smoke but finding an “anti-smoking conspiracy” is like saying the holocaust didn’t happen, we never landed on the moon, or that the earth is actually flat.

    • Frank Davis says:

      I’ve searched the text on this page for the word “conspiracy”, and your comment is the only one in which the word appears (three times, to be exact). So who’s the conspiracy theorist around here?

    • “I appreciate that y’all like to smoke but finding an “anti-smoking conspiracy” is like saying the holocaust didn’t happen, we never landed on the moon, or that the earth is actually flat.”

      Fletcher, you need to read a bit more in the field. I spent the first fifty pages of “Dissecting Antismokers’ Brains” explaining that main thrust of the antismoking movement was clearly NOT a simple conspiracy, but instead was a sort of “perfect storm” formed by individual and separate people and groups of people with very different motivations who simply happen to be “moving in the same direction” for their own individual reasons.

      Yes, they have SOME degree of coordination from the big boys at the top: those multimillion dollar international “Smoke Free” conferences with their thousands of paid participants planning out future strategies have an impact, but it’s certainly not a “conspiracy” in the classic meaning of the word.

      Heh, actually, your “lap dogs for Big Tobacco” thing is more of a conspiracy theory than what you’re criticizing. Basically the Antismokers like to take ANYONE who writes or acts in favor of Free Choice and try to write them off as BigT shills/lackeys/lap-dogs/dupes, whatever. When Dave Kuneman and I carried out research in 2005 showing the falsehood behind the “smoking bans reduce heart attacks” studies, the SmokeScam people had no valid critcism of our actual research, but they DID mark Dave down as a “tobacco industry researcher” because he worked as a soda-flavoring chemist at a soda company twenty years in the past (and the company was bought and sold by PM or RJR at some point when he was there.)

      If you want to point at conspiracy theories… look to the Antis rather than the Free Choicers Fletch.

      – MJM

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  41. Sarah Gates says:

    It’s sickening that people would lie to get attention to their cause like this, however having come from a family of smokers and seen one family member die from Lung Cancer, 2 others from smoking related cancers, and one from Emphysema with Bronchitis, along with 2 family members currently living with Emphysema (both heavy smokers) I’ve got enough evidence to suggest that smoking kills. So thanks for revealing the false advertising, but you can’t detract from the fact that smoking does kill you.

    • beobrigitte says:

      2 others from smoking related cancers
      Do elaborate on this!

      Aren’t “smoking related cancers” related to age?

      Incidentally, I lost my father due to work related injury and my brother due to a car hitting him.

  42. mattbl says:

    So my understanding is people actually seem to believe smoking isn’t bad for them? Honestly, how far your head would have to be buried in the sand to believe such a thing, I can’t even imagine…

    • Matt, can you understand the difference between educating people with something that is true, at least as far as physical evidence and scientific research indicate, and lying to people in the way that they’ve done with this black lung thing or the distortions of secondary smoke research?

      Sarah, if you came from a family of obese people who were dropping dead from heart attacks and diabetes etc, would you conclude that “food does kill you”? Or would you more properly conclude that, for some people, their dietary habits probably resulted in their deaths? There’s a very big difference between those two statements, and it’s a difference that Antismokers ALWAYS willfully ignore in their propaganda.

      – MJM

      • Jason says:

        Michael J. McFadden,

        Smoking won’t always cause a disease or condition, but it certainly increases the likelihood of developing one. The laws of physics, chemistry and biology state that very clearly.

        Your analogy between both food and smoking being able to kill you breaks down in that; One, our bodies have evolved over billions of years to digest food, and extract and slightly alter its usable constituents. Two, a vastly wider range of molecules and nutrients are available to our bodies via digestion and metabolization than are available from inhaling the products of a red/ox reaction. And most crucially, you assert that certain dietary habits can result in death, but make no distinction between which smoking habits might or might not result in death. Maybe you can elaborate more on that?

        I’m aware that much of the anti smoking media is propaganda, and some of it certainly downright false, but are you nonetheless aware that smoking is still bad for your body?

        • Jason, there is “no safe level” for exposure to human carcinogens, correct? Ethyl alcohol is a human carcinogen. It is also highly volatile. Put those together and you arrive at the inescapable conclusion that being in a restaurant where a patron somewhere is sipping a wine cooler may ultimately result in your death.

          It could also be argued that any individual ingestion of a sweet with a few sugar molecules or a burger with a few fat molecules could form the crucial tipping point that results in an individual case of diabetes or an individual instance of a heart attack. And it could be argued that an individual puff from a cigarette at some point formed the tipping point that caused a fatal cancer, or that the individual flap of a butterfly’s wings in Outer Mongolia caused Hurricane Katrina.

          I believe smoking is quite likely bad for one’s health. I’d even go farther and say that I think it’s been pretty well proven that people will sometimes (or occasionally, or often, depending on lots of variables) get cancer because they have smoked. Lots of people who have smoked will also NOT get cancer.

          I do NOT believe that ordinary levels of exposure to secondhand smoke represent any level of risk that any well-balanced, well-informed, sane person should be concerned about in their day to day life. If you read my books you will find that I support that believe with a wide range of reading, references, analyses, and facts.

          Have I answered your question well enough?

          – MJM

        • Jason says:

          Safety in this context is relative. Obviously none of the possibilities you put forward are in any way likely, I’m not paranoid or an alarmist. That said, I consider Second hand smoke relatively safe, I believe safe enough that I feel that laws against public smoking are in most cases unnecessary.

          And yes that was a sufficient answer. Thanks.


        • beobrigitte says:

          I believe safe enough that I feel that laws against public smoking are in most cases unnecessary.

          These laws are completely unecessary. Your generation relies on pensioners (baby boomers grown up with little restriction on smoking!!!) working far beyond what used to be retirement age. The reasoning given by our government was: “People live longer THESE days”. That obviously includes all of us who grew up with no smoking ban anywhere.

        • beobrigitte says:

          Smoking won’t always cause a disease or condition, but it certainly increases the likelihood of developing one. The laws of physics, chemistry and biology state that very clearly.

          May I politely challenge you to explain these laws of physics, chemistry and biology that state all tese claims so clearly IN YOUR OWN WORDS? (No link copying, please, and no plagarism!!!)

  43. David says:

    Why don’t you state your own biases at the outset, since you allege bias in antismokers? I suppose there is an upside to smoking in that smokers die more suddenly and thus cost the health care system less than non-smokers. Pension plans can probably do better, too, because retired smokers draw out less money. Smoke on, but please do it outdoors!

  44. Nadene says:

    This is a most hilarious thread …

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  46. Reggie says:

    Anyone in the 21st century who questions whether smoking causes emphysema is in serious denial.

    Denial of the truth = lying.

  47. So, since we’re here on the playground and I’ve shown you mine, why don’t you show me yours, Sarah, David, Jason, Matt, Nadine, and Reggie … who all simultaneously “discovered” this thread after it had been silent for eight months — and who all, oddly enough, seem to have absolutely NO form of ID attached to their names/gravatars.

    Fair is fair, level playing field and all that….

    – MJM

  48. FusterCluck says:

    Well, you guys justa keep on smoking then. As I visit the graves of the few friends I’ve lost to various cancers, I’ll be sure to tell them you guys said it wasn’t due to their smoking,

    Denial ain’t just a river in Egypt…

  49. stuart says:

    ok so i can understand that the black lung pictures were touched up or blatantly faked, which does detract from the anti smoking lobby, but do you think the intention to deliberately put people of smoking is a worthwhile endeavor?
    While as adultsw, you’re perfectly entitled to your smoking pleasure, the question I’m asking is for those of you with kids, are you happy for them to begin smoking if they don’t already, or are you willing to fudge the truth if it would put them off taking up the habit?

  50. Stuart, “fudging the truth” for five to ten-year-old children who are unable to appreciate the complexities of the truths that might truly have a strong impact on their well-being is one thing; “fudging the truth” for fifteen to twenty-year-old “children” is a different story and more likely to simply result in them refusing the accept the validity of the far more important REAL truths (e.g. “don’t drink and drive”, “don’t text and drive”, “don’t have unprotected sex”, “don’t smoke meth or shoot heroin”, “don’t shoot people”, “respect legitimate authority but not illegitimate authority”) that you should be teaching them. And “fudging the truth” in ways that abuse our children by frightening them with the idea that they’re going to be killed or orphaned by their parents because those parents smoke is little short of criminal … if short at all. I think even Anna Raccoon would agree that that sort of “teaching” is *real* child abuse.

    Stuart, no background on you either I see. Just joining the party with Sarah, David, Jason, Matt, Nadine, and Reggie? Where did you all wander in from pray tell?

    – MJM

    • Stuart says:

      I saw this on a face book link. When I was 11 my bio teacher showed us a ‘black lung’ in class (now I know it was a pigs one) and it put me off smoking for life. As a lie it was an effective one, though I didn’t become convinced it would kill my dad (then a heavy smoker). I’m about to enter a nursing university programme do I guess I view this lie as a minor one against the (possible) harmful effects of smoking. I’m also against drink drivers and phone drivers, but I don’t see this as an either/or debate. The uk also has a long running campaign of adverts that show drunks running people over or crashing their cars but this is also only a (possible) risk being pushed at kids. Sometimes using strong images can be the best way to instill learning.

      • Stuart, agreed. Interesting thing on the texting/driving bit though. Professor Fernando Wilson did a fairly large study a couple of years back where he came up with a risk figure for texting while driving and wanted to communicate it effectively to teens. I took his figures, compared them to the EPA Report figures on lung cancer and ETS, and found that being in a car while a driver texted a single message was roughly equivalent in terms of risk to being in a car with someone smoking for 13,000 one-hour trips. Given the paranoia being pumped into our kids about being around smoke you’d have thought he’d be quite pleased to be able to present kids with such a strong warning about the dangers of texting.

        Nope. Once he saw that the message might be interpreted in favor of smoking he never responded to me. I guess the kids getting their bodies mangled in car accidents just plays second fiddle to possibly getting lung cancer forty years later.


        • Stuart says:

          Your right, that was an intersting point, I also got some amusing visuals but I guess it doesn’t make for ‘sexy’ when they’re running the smoking warning campaigns.
          My 18 yr old niece recently started smoking, and I must admit to bring prejudiced, that I’d rather she stops (she keeps saying she wants to, but typical teen, it’s always tomorrow) but since she’s also waiting for her driving test I’ll also use your figures about the texting thing. That phones normally glued to her hand. Thanks for the replying to my query.

        • You’re welcome, and yes, DO communicate that to her and maybe it’ll save her life. If she might be a typical texting teen driver who might send/receive a thousand texts a year while driving (and that’s probably a low figure) that would be equal to THIRTEEN MILLION drives with smokers. (Actually the real figure might be more like thirteen billion: I use the EPA estimate for smoke risk… an estimate that was likely far higher than reality. Remember: they couldn’t use normal statistics to arrive at their conclusion… they had to use a 90% confidence interval to make their claim valid.)

          – MJM

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