Grieshaber: “Passive smoking causes no harm“

H/T Reinhold. On Sunday, the Swiss are voting on a total smoking ban, and the antismokers (who look set to win) having been using pictures of people killed by Mafia gangs to drive home their message that passive smoking kills. Romano Grieshaber recently gave an interview for a Basel newspaper, a translation of which appears below.

Romano Grieshaber, Professor of Preventive Medicine, aimed to start a debate with [his book] “Passivrauchen – Götterdämmerung der Wissenschaft (Passive smoking – Science’s twilight of the gods”). Yet he didn’t succeed. By Martina Rutschmann

Professor Romano Grieshaber accuses health organizations of acting more ideologically than scientifically in the field of passive smoking.

He has dedicated his life to preventive medicine. In one area, however, he speaks of “hysteria”: about passive smoking. Non-smoker Romano Grieshaber (66) would be the first to support the fight against it – if it really was harmful. But in his opinion it is not, as he explains in his book.

As the head of prevention and research of the German trade association Food and Restaurants, he conducted numerous studies of passive smoke exposure until he retired a year ago – coming to the conclusion that it wasn’t that harmful at all. Studies that drew different conclusions were scientifically untenable, and were used to enact laws such as the law proposed by the Swiss Lung League for the “protection from passive smoking”, on which Switzerland votes on 23rd September .

Mr. Grieshaber, how many cigarettes have you already inhaled involuntarily today?

None.

If the “protection against passive smoking” initiative were to be adopted, as a non-smoker you’d be less at risk in Switzerland in future than in your home country: In Germany every year over 3300 non-smokers die from the after-effects of passive smoking, as a study by the German Cancer Research Center reports. You could be one of these dead.

I hardly think so. Because the risk of falling ill from second-hand smoke is minimal. It is recognized around the world as a relative risk of 1.16, which corresponds to a minimal risk. And even from this number no causal relationship with secondhand smoke can be derived.

That sounds different from the Swiss Lung League. With their initiative they follow the “liberal principle that one’s freedom ends where the health of others is at risk.” In your book, however, you write that such statements – e.g. by the World Health Organization WHO – are not scientifically sound. Please explain.
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When we (the German trade association Food and Restaurants, note) began our research in 2000, we assumed that passive smoking was harmful too. So our own research findings in the restaurant area – the area with the greatest concentration of secondhand smoke – surprised us: According to our results, heart attacks, lung cancer, and chronic lung diseases in waiters were even less frequent than in the general population. For our study, we investigated the diseases of six million traders. No one had done so before us.

Other studies have come to a contrary conclusion: The risk of lung cancer would be higher among waiters than for other workers. Whom should we believe now?

Epidemiology (Science for quantitative research on risk factors and spread of diseases, note) worldwide doesn’t consider additional pollutants such as radon or asbestos, which are present along with second-hand smoke. This in turn falsifies the result. Also nonphysical factors such as depression or unemployment were not integrated in the investigation on which they came up with the 3300 dead – although it was already known at that time that depression is considered to be a cause for heart attacks at least as often as active smoking. These things are concealed, although epidemiologically they cannot be separated from passive smoking.

So science is doing a bad job?

Let me put it this way: All the studies on this subject worldwide are afflicted with the same problem: They don’t consider all the relevant factors that have a concurrent influence.

So the smokers club “Fümoar” is right when it writes in advertisements that there wasn’t a single scientifically suitable and reliable study worldwide that verifies health damage due to passive smoking?

You can say that, yes.

The Lung League, however, promotes the initiative by predicting fewer heart attacks and respiratory diseases. As a credible institution, with such statements it certainly wins over many voters.

I think so too, because the WHO has managed to give the public the impression that the threat was exactly as great as they state it to be. Already back in the seventies, the WHO split society into smokers and non-smokers. Against this background, the whole movement is to be regarded more pseudo-religious and less scientific.

In your opinion the health movement is ideologically driven, but can’t enact laws that way alone – which is why they’re pushing studies that aren’t scientifically valid after all?

In fact there is provably false evidence in this area. The study with the 3300 dead for example is missing its database. The data on which the study is based do not exist. In the study, neither age as a separate risk factor was taken into account, nor the previously mentioned other factors. Thus I may speak of whitewashing, if not of forgery.

Assuming that secondhand smoke really is as harmless as you say – what would be the point of fighting it?

The reason why secondhand smoke is being made a target is because active smoking can’t be tackled so directly yet. So the only way to take action against smokers is via passive smoking. For that, minimal risks are inflated. This is dangerous, because this way the real risks are not being fought anymore.

What are the real risks?

Asbestos, for instance, comes to mind. Russia delivers asbestos in quantities like never before. And in countries such as Canada, asbestos continues to be used. It is still the world’s number one issue. But the organizations hardly mention it any more.

Indirectly you’re saying that in many areas the WHO’s work is far from being independent.

This dependence shows up very clearly with regard to the pharmaceutical industry. This is largely promoted, as we last saw with swine flu, when panic and exaggeration was openly spread. Large quantities of vaccine needed to be destroyed later. Since the whole process was initiated by the WHO, then clearly it is fighting on the side of the pharma industry – also in the fight against the tobacco industry. And it is succeeding quite well.

That means you predict a Yes at the plebiscite?

In any case the WHO has managed to stir up people’s fears.

Back to your book: You wanted to kick off a debate – but by now you mostly met with anger to the point of death threats. Where’s the anger of some smoke opponents coming from?

You are right, in internet forums people write some very aggressive texts about my book and me. The media, in contrast, write nothing at all – they hush up the book, because they are often brought into line by the health movement.

Why do smoke opponents become so angry on this issue?

It’s related to the overall health hysteria. Probably many people are really afraid about passive smoking.

Did you expect such torrents of hatred?

Yes, but I’m mentally tough. (laughing).

Disagreements on this issue are undesirable. If you’re right, couldn’t a good argument be made that there is no need for laws to “protect against passive smoking”?

The public perception is otherwise, no matter what results the studies offer. This cannot be changed easily. The politicians are happy about that, because they need bans to control the citizens – just as religion requires prohibitions. And it doesn’t matter to the politicians to inflate something and to advance into the area of personal responsibility.

The initiators of the referendum say exactly the opposite, namely: Third parties must be protected from secondhand smoke to which they are involuntarily exposed – not by personal responsibility, that is.

If secondhand smoke really was harmful, even I would fight for the law.

You write that no illness caused by passive smoking would be prevented by this proposed amendment . How do you know?

You know that from just the relative risk of passive smoking. The relative risk of 1.16 is an overall risk for all sorts of factors, but so far no one has succeeded in separating secondhand smoke from them.

According to your theory, the term Passive Smoking is wrong, because it implies that someone smokes – and smoking is undisputedly harmful.

The word comes from the Third Reich, where the Nazis had already taken action against the so-called Passivrauchen (passive smoking), and the word remains in use today.

The opponents of the initiative ask people to be rational. They point to “serious consequences” for trade and industry. As a long-time director of the Prevention Research at the German trade association Food and Restaurants you could observe the corresponding consequences for the hospitality industry. Are the fears of the Swiss opponents of the initiative reasonable?

No question. The WHO denies though that smoking bans have economic consequences. But look at Ireland, England, France. Also in Germany thousands of pubs had to close down – even though in Germany the law is not as strict by far as the one that the Lung League wants for Switzerland.

Let’s take a look across the Atlantic to the U.S., where as a smoker one is often regarded with contempt, to the extent that there is any opportunity at all to light a cigarette. In other social spheres the West nowadays follows the U.S. less than before. With respect to smoking, do we still?

The trend goes in this direction, when one observes how doggedly health organizations are fighting. I’m afraid that in the near future smoking bans in homes and cars will be demanded over here, too.

And who’s turn will it be after the smokers? The overweight? The people who drink alcohol? The car drivers?

That’s a good question. If you add up the deaths caused by smoking, diet, and alcohol, you get more people than actually died – that means, apparently there are only these causes of death. And they’re all from the sector of personal responsibility. Everything else is left out.

Thus healthy living people are immortal?

(laughing) This impression is conveyed by health organizations, medicine, and press, yes. Probably the obese are the next. If you smoke less you gain weight. And the rate of diabetes is higher for stouter people. The fight against unhealthy diet is already in full swing.

What will our world look like in a few decades, when there won’t be smoking and obese people any more?

I’ve not yet thought that far. But there is a danger that the views of the health apostles will survive. I myself won’t be alive then.

Actually, the conversation would have ended here, but there still was a question – from the photographer, a father of four children, and a smoker. He asked: Until now, I’ve always gone out to the balcony to smoke. Can I smoke inside from now on?

We examined working people, not children, so I advise you to search other studies for the effects of passive smoking on children. But one thing I can tell you: Most people of my age grew up in smokers households – and a great many of them are still living, some even very well.

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26 Responses to Grieshaber: “Passive smoking causes no harm“

  1. wobbler2012 says:

    “Working an eight-hour shift in a smoke-filled establishment is equivalent to smoking between 15 and 38 cigarettes, the proposal’s supporters say, pointing to a World Health Organization study revealing that second-hand smoke kills upward of 600,000 people every year.”

    There you go Frank, no need to buy cigarettes any more lol. These people are fucking insane.

    http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Health/2012/Sep-20/188643-passive-smoking-under-fire-when-swiss-head-to-the-polls.ashx

  2. harleyrider1978 says:

    OSHA came to the same conclusion 15 years ago!

    OSHA / NIOSH RESEARCH

    In 1991 NIOSH { OSHA’ research group} Looked into ETS although at the time they recommended reducing ETS exposure they found the studies lacking.

    NIOSH recognizes that these recent epidemiological studies have several shortcomings: lack of objective measures for charachterizing and quantifying exposures,failures to adjust for all confounding variables,potential misclassification of ex-smokers as non-smokers,unavailability of comparison groups that have not been exposed to ETS, and low statistical power.

    Research is needed to investigate the following issues:

    1. More acurate quantification of the increased risk of lung cancer associated with ETS exposure,including determination of other contributing factors[e.g.,occupational exposures]that may accentuate the risk.

    2.Determination of the concentration and distributuion of ETS components in the workplace to help quantify the risk for the U.S. working population.

    a.The association of ETS exposure with cancer other than lung cancer
    b.The relationship between ETS exposure and cardiovascular disease
    c.The relationship between ETS exposure and nonmalignant resporatory diseases such asthma,bronchitis and emphysema, and
    the effects of ETS on lung function and respiratory systems
    c. Possible mechanisms of ETS damage to the cardiovascular system,such as platelet aggravation,increased COHb leading to oxygen depravation,or damage to endothelium
    d.Effects of workplace smoking restrictions on the ETS exposure of nonsmokersand ETS-related health effects in nonsmokers

    After ten years of no conclusive research and lack of studies that didn’t eliminate the bias OSHA decided that the studies did not have substance and here is there present policy.

    Environmental Tobacco Smoke (ETS)

    Because the organic material in tobacco doesn’t burn completely, cigarette smoke contains more than 4,700 chemical compounds. Although OSHA has no regulation that addresses tobacco smoke as a whole, 29 CFR 1910.1000 Air contaminants, limits employee exposure to several of the main chemical components found in tobacco smoke. In normal situations, exposures would not exceed these permissible exposure limits (PELs), and, as a matter of prosecutorial discretion, OSHA will not apply the General Duty Clause to ETS.

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      Even the Scottish government came to that conclusion when they told their enforcement officers not to push it to far because the studies did not amount to anything that could be considered harmful if anybody still has that tidbit from the scottish government pamphlet.

  3. waltc says:

    A national survey that’s been making headlines here (US) this week shows that 63% of Americans don’t trust the media to tell the truth. Unfortunately, I believe the belief in SHS has been grandfathered in.

  4. Tom says:

    “In Germany every year over 3300 non-smokers die from the after-effects of passive smoking, as a study by the German Cancer Research Center reports. You could be one of these dead.”

    What I find interesting – 3,300 – that same exact number or something close to it (3,000, 3,100, 3,200, 3,300, never less than 3,000) – is the same number said to die yearly from SHS in EVERY country – the EXACT SAME nominal statistic is quoted over and over and over and over again – right before bringing in a smoking ban – as part of the propaganda ploy. Doesn’t that imply it’s a confidence-trick/con-game/lie then – if it’s the same nominal value quoted in every country, even though the population of these countries all widely vary.

    Also it’s interesting hearing it coming from a German study now – from people obviously hoping to bring in “Hitler’s Law”, which is what the smoking bans are – they are essentially, “Hitler’s Law” – it’s what they should start calling it, if they were to be perfectly honest and truthful about what they are proposing..

  5. smokingscot says:

    And, to add to the gloom, Holland decided it’s future must involve going along with the EU. One party headed by an ex-Unilever executive and the other by a slick Greens politician.

    Back to full funding for their TCI; screw self employed rights, turn off the ventilators. Conform and comply.

    http://business.financialpost.com/2012/09/12/dutch-voters-shun-radicals-as-pro-euro-parties-sweep-election/

    Yea gads, if this thing crosses the channel, we’ll have a coalition headed by Clegg and Milliband. Perpetual recesssion.

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      mark my words it will be a worldwide collpase of such magnitude the world has never seen or lived thru. Its going to get very ugly now. Printed money so vast even after the Euro collpase former national currency will have to be debased so low as to make mogadishu dollars valuable!

      • harleyrider1978 says:

        Why are they doing this,simply to keep the UN dream alive for a tad bit longer the world over and we can thank the greens for this worldwide meltdown.

    • Tony says:

      I think the VVD party increased their vote (10 more seats?). An MP from the VVD spoke at the 2010 TICAP conference:
      “Halbe Zijlstra, a Dutch MP of the VVD party, who indicated that his party will make clear that it is not willing to support the full tobacco control agenda and wants to give freedom of choice to hospitality owners.”
      http://www.antiprohibition.org/ticap_pages.php?q=15
      So I’m hoping all is not lost.

  6. magnetic01 says:

    The use of the photo above to promote the idea of “SHS kills” is beyond despicable. It is incitement to irrational fear and hatred. But, that’s what fanatics/zealots/extremists do. They promote inflammatory propaganda to make a non-issue an issue. Then, as the day to vote nears, they let loose with the really nasty baseless inferences. It creates a frenzy, a crescendo of unbridled negative emotion to get the ban over the line. The only interest fanatics have is in getting smoking bans instituted. They don’t care how they get instituted, just that they get instituted. Once a ban is imposed, then there’s another set of propaganda attempting to keep the bans in place. It is political activism of the worst kind.

    Concerning the Grieshaber interview, the inflammatory idea that really stands out concerning SHS is “passive/secondhand smoking”. This is an inflammatory myth that’s still doing the rounds. Smoking refers to dragging on a cigarette and inhaling (drawback) the packet of concentrated smoke. The lifelong risks associated with smoking have to do with millions of such inhalations. Simply breathing air that contains some highly dilute remnants of smoke is not smoking; it doesn’t remotely resemble smoking. Many nonsmokers have never smoked, so they wouldn’t know the difference. They have been manipulated into the idea that they are being forced to “smoke’ against their will and, therefore, assuming the risks of smoking.

    Even studies that suggest that nonsmokers working in smoking-permitted environments are exposed, say, to 6 (or however many) cigarettes per annum will then make the mistake of claiming that nonsmokers “smoke” the equivalent of 6 cigarettes. This is not correct at all. They may be exposed to the equivalent of 6 cigarettes per annum (exposure through normal inhalation over a long period) but the exposure is not inhaled in the same manner (or time duration) as someone actively smoking 6 cigarettes. They are two entirely different phenomena. The same applies to statistical “studies” that declare that nonsmokers are exposed to a particular percentage of particular smoke constituents as smokers and will then conclude that nonsmoker lung cancer cases should be that percentage of LC cases in smokers. The “argument” is flawed because, again, the manner/mode/time of inhalation is entirely different.

    For anyone interested in a more detailed piece on “passive smoking”, see comment in:
    https://cfrankdavis.wordpress.com/2012/06/12/doctors-in-name-only/#comments

    • Frank Davis says:

      The use of the photo above to promote the idea of “SHS kills” is beyond despicable. It is incitement to irrational fear and hatred.

      That’s more or less what I thought when I woke up this morning.

      But with the slight variation that the picture is a manifest lie. Because one thing you know about the dead man slumped over the table is that it wasn’t passive smoking that killed him, but a couple of bullets through his head.

  7. magnetic01 says:

    Concerning the Swiss situation, this would have been a good time for a “bigger picture” or greater-context perspective. Most countries are signed up to the FCTC, but they are at different stages of implementing particular requirements. Some countries are now shooting even way beyond FCTC requirements, e.g., Australia. The Swiss are at the stage of attempting to implement a national indoor smoking ban. Other countries were at that stage years ago. So it’s valuable to see what’s happened in countries that have already passed national indoor bans.

    This is a comment made by an antismoking activist appearing in a Lebanese article covering the Swiss indoor ban vote:
    “The Swiss Pulmonary League launched the initiative mainly to clear up all the confusion, he [Jean-Charles Rielle, a physician and a member of the committee behind the proposal, told AFP] said, insisting it was not opposed to outdoor smoking or smoking in private spaces.”
    http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Health/2012/Sep-20/188643-passive-smoking-under-fire-when-swiss-head-to-the-polls.ashx#ixzz271OW2yEp

    This propaganda has all been heard before. Antismoking activists in countries such as America, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK, made similar statements leading up to indoor smoking bans – that they were not opposed to outdoor smoking or smoking in private spaces. They were lying. Once indoor bans were passed, the activists went straight to work on outdoor smoking bans – beaches, parks, pools, malls – bans in cars, bans in apartments; many such bans have already been enacted. In some countries they are also pushing for employment and medical-treatment discrimination against smokers. Even the WHO has a “no smoker” employment policy.

    It should be apparent in countries that have reached this “advanced” stage of bans that many of the latest bans have nothing to do with protecting nonsmokers from SHS “danger” (SHS “danger” has been a concoction to push through indoor smoking bans). In some cases, all tobacco products have been banned including chewing tobacco and snus which don’t even involve smoke. The current crusade is a social-engineering, eradication-of-tobacco-use-from-“normal”-society crusade (see Godber Blueprint). It is very much like most previous anti-smoking/tobacco crusades. And like most previous crusades, it runs on inflammatory propaganda masqueraded as “authoritative” or “scientific” to get bans passed. There is more than ample evidence just from the current crusade that the antismoking fanatics/zealots/extremists are agenda-driven, pathological-lying, political activists. And when they are let loose with their inflammatory lies, they destabilize a society.

    Hopefully, the Swiss and other countries still in the early phases of antismoking fanaticism learn from what has occurred in other countries and keep themselves from being deceived and manipulated into the same derangement.

  8. magnetic01 says:

    (cont’d)

    Here’s a brief history of the antismoking madness over the last few decades and the lying that occurred at every stage.
    The first demand for a smoking ban was in the late-1980s concerning short-haul flights in the USA of less than 2 hours. At the time, the antismokers were asked if this was a “slippery slope” – where would it end? They ridiculed anyone suggesting such because this ban was ALL that they were after.
    Then they ONLY wanted smoking bans on all flights.
    Then the antismokers ONLY wanted nonsmoking sections in restaurants, bars, etc., and ensuring that this was ALL they wanted.
    Then the antismokers ONLY wanted complete bans indoors. That was all they wanted. At the time, no-one was complaining about having to “endure” wisps of smoke outdoors.
    While they pursued indoor bans, the antismokers were happy for smokers to be exiled to the outdoors. Having bulldozed their way into indoor bans, the antismokers then went to work on the outdoors, now declaring that momentary exposure to remnants of smoke in doorways or a whiff outdoors was a “hazard”, more than poor, innocent nonsmokers should have to “endure”.
    Then they ONLY wanted bans within 10 feet of entrance ways.
    Then they ONLY wanted bans within 20 feet of entrance ways.
    Then they ONLY wanted bans in entire outdoor dining areas.
    Then they ONLY wanted bans for entire university and hospital campuses and parks and beaches.
    Then they ONLY wanted bans for apartment balconies.
    Then they ONLY wanted bans for entire apartment (including individual apartments) complexes.
    On top of all of this, there are now instances, particularly in the USA, where smokers are denied employment, denied housing (even the elderly), and denied medical treatment. Smokers in the UK are denied fostering/adoption. Involuntary mental patients are restrained physically or chemically (sedation) rather than allow them to have a cigarette – even outside.
    At each point there was a crazed insistence that there was no more to come while they were actually planning the next ban and the brainwashing required to push it. There has been incessant (pathological) lying and deception. Many medically-aligned groups have been committed to antismoking – their smokefree “utopia” – since the 1960s. They have prostituted their medical authority and integrity to chase ideology, social engineering. All of it is working to a tobacco-extermination plan run by the WHO and that most nations are now signed-up to (Framework Convention on Tobacco Control).
    We can see the pattern here. The concocted SHS “danger” concerned a minute statistical risk of entirely questionable causal basis for LIFELONG (40, 50, 60 years) exposure to SHS from spousal smoking. Around 99.9+% of those exposed to SHS over a lifetime have NO elevated statistical risk of disease. Yet with the propaganda promoting the idea that SHS is bio-weapon-like, unlike anything else on earth, we now have many delicate and dainty nonsmokers “running the gauntlet” of smokers at entranceways, hand cupped over mouth, terrified that they might inhale one whiff. This is the promotion of mental dysfunction (e.g., anxiety reactions, hypochondria, somatization). And the irrationally terrified then demand “protection”. It is fully to be expected as a result of incessant inflammatory propaganda. And this is typically what happens when the medically-aligned Public Health goes on its social-engineering, deranged ideological crusades. The fanatics will keep pushing as far as society allows them.

  9. magnetic01 says:

    Sorry, the formatting got messed up. Let’s try again.

    Here’s a brief history of the antismoking madness over the last few decades and the lying that occurred at every stage.

    The first demand for a smoking ban was in the late-1980s concerning short-haul flights in the USA of less than 2 hours. At the time, the antismokers were asked if this was a “slippery slope” – where would it end? They ridiculed anyone suggesting such because this ban was ALL that they were after.
    Then they ONLY wanted smoking bans on all flights.
    Then the antismokers ONLY wanted nonsmoking sections in restaurants, bars, etc., and ensuring that this was ALL they wanted.
    Then the antismokers ONLY wanted complete bans indoors. That was all they wanted. At the time, no-one was complaining about having to “endure” wisps of smoke outdoors.

    While they pursued indoor bans, the antismokers were happy for smokers to be exiled to the outdoors. Having bulldozed their way into indoor bans, the antismokers then went to work on the outdoors, now declaring that momentary exposure to remnants of smoke in doorways or a whiff outdoors was a “hazard”, more than poor, innocent nonsmokers should have to “endure”.
    Then they ONLY wanted bans within 10 feet of entrance ways.
    Then they ONLY wanted bans within 20 feet of entrance ways.
    Then they ONLY wanted bans in entire outdoor dining areas.
    Then they ONLY wanted bans for entire university and hospital campuses and parks and beaches.
    Then they ONLY wanted bans for apartment balconies.
    Then they ONLY wanted bans for entire apartment (including individual apartments) complexes.

    On top of all of this, there are now instances, particularly in the USA, where smokers are denied employment, denied housing (even the elderly), and denied medical treatment. Smokers in the UK are denied fostering/adoption. Involuntary mental patients are restrained physically or chemically (sedation) rather than allow them to have a cigarette – even outside.

    At each point there was a crazed insistence that there was no more to come while they were actually planning the next ban and the brainwashing required to push it. There has been incessant (pathological) lying and deception. Many medically-aligned groups have been committed to antismoking – their smokefree “utopia” – since the 1960s. They have prostituted their medical authority and integrity to chase ideology, social engineering. All of it is working to a tobacco-extermination plan run by the WHO and that most nations are now signed-up to (Framework Convention on Tobacco Control).

  10. magnetic01 says:

    (cont’d)

    We can see the pattern here. The concocted SHS “danger” concerned a minute statistical risk of entirely questionable causal basis for LIFELONG (40, 50, 60 years) exposure to SHS from spousal smoking. Around 99.9+% of those exposed to SHS over a lifetime have NO elevated statistical risk of disease. Yet with the propaganda promoting the idea that SHS is bio-weapon-like, unlike anything else on earth, we now have many delicate and dainty nonsmokers “running the gauntlet” of smokers at entranceways, hand cupped over mouth, terrified that they might inhale one whiff. This is the promotion of mental dysfunction (e.g., anxiety reactions, hypochondria, somatization). And the irrationally terrified then demand “protection”. It is fully to be expected as a result of incessant inflammatory propaganda. And this is typically what happens when the medically-aligned Public Health goes on its social-engineering, deranged ideological crusades. The fanatics will keep pushing as far as society allows them.

    This has all happened in just 20 years. If it was mentioned 20 years ago, or even 10 or 5 years ago, that smokers would be denied employment and housing and smoking bans in parks and beaches, it would have been laughed at as “crazed thinking”. Yet here we are. It’s all happened before and it has all been intentional, planned decades ago. We just don’t learn or we’re going to have to learn the very hard way because it has to do with far, far more than just smoking.

  11. magnetic01 says:

    Here’s an article from 1998 addressing the increase in smoking restrictions. The concern of smokers was that the UK was heading for a complete ban on smoking in pubs and restaurants. Enter Clive Bates of ASH at the time with the standard “of course not….. how absurd…. that’s just tobacco industry scaremongering”:

    Clive Bates, director of anti-smoking group ASH, said:

    “This is a scaremongering story by a tobacco industry front group.

    “No-one is seriously talking about a complete ban on smoking in pubs and restaurants.

    “What they should have asked is whether separate smoking and non-smoking areas should be set up in pubs and restaurants.

    “We reckon that would have strong support from both smokers and non-smokers.”
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/167762.stm

    Well, it turns out that the smokers’ concern was right and Clive Bates and his antismoking ilk were lying/wrong.

  12. magnetic01 says:

    From the article above:

    Smokers are hitting back at increasing restrictions on their habit by threatening to boycott pubs and restaurants with no smoking policies.

    Smokers’ rights group the Fair Cigarette Tax Campaign claims the entertainment industry could lose millions of pounds if it clamps down on smoking.

    A survey carried out by the pressure group found that more than 35% of smokers would stop drinking in their local pub if it introduced a smoking ban and one in 10 would visit the pub less often.

    The survey also found that more than one in four smokers would not dine at their favourite restaurant if it banned smoking, while one in seven would eat there less often.

    And 30% of those interviewed said they would stop visiting local shopping centres with no-smoking policies if there was a convenient alternative.

    Blanket bans have already proved unsuccessful in Littlewoods shops and Bass-owned Toby restaurants. Both had to rethink their smoking strategies.

    That seems like a reasonable forewarning of what eventually occurred when a national ban was imposed, coupled with the failure of the promised turnout of nonsmokers in their droves.

  13. harleyrider1978 says:

    Frank Stantons pulling his hair out here: Im posting it all as I dont think it will stay up long on the net.
    http://tobacco.ucsf.edu/e-cigarettes-release-toxic-chemicals-indoors-should-be-included-clean-indoor-air-laws-and-policies#comment-200
    e-cigarettes release toxic chemicals indoors, should be included in clean indoor air laws and policies
    Submitted by sglantz on Wed, 2012-09-19 17:59
    A study published in Indoor Air from the Fraunhofer Wilhelm-Klauditz-Institut in Germany examined secondhand emissions from several e-cigarettes in a human exposure chamber. Each e-cigarette was puffed 6 times and data were collected for a conventional cigarette, also puffed 6 timed.

    While the e-cigarette produced lower levels of toxins in the air for nonsmokers to breathe than the conventional, there were still elevated levels of acetic acid, acetone, isoprene, formaldehyde and acetaldehyde, averaging around 20% of what the conventional cigarette put into the air.

    Thus, while not as polluting as a conventional cigarette, the e-cigarettes are putting detectable levels of several significant carcinogens and toxins in the air.

    No one should have to breathe these chemicals, whether they come out of a conventional or e-cigarette. No one should smoke e-cigarettes indoors that are free of other forms of tobacco smoke pollution.

    .sglantz’s blogAdd new comment
    .Comments
    Submitted by Anonymous on Fri, 2012-09-21 12:00.
    comparison to occupational standards
    It should be noted that infants and children do not work in industrial plants and the occupational standards do not take into account sensitivities of early life
    exposures. The occupational standards are set in consideration of technological feasibility and cost, not just health effects. Neither USEPA nor CalEPA use
    occupational standards for setting acceptable levels of environmental chemical exposure to the general public.

    Melanie Marty, Ph.D.

    Adjunct Associate Professor

    UC Davis

    reply.Submitted by Anonymous on Thu, 2012-09-20 13:43.
    Not as polluting as ordinary breathing
    Diskin, et al. conducted a study of the concentrations of the common breath metabolites ammonia, acetone, isoprene, ethanol and acetaldehyde in the breath of five subjects over a period of 30 days. “Breath samples were taken and analysed in the early morning on arrival at the laboratory.” http://hero.epa.gov/index.cfm?action=reference.details&reference_id=989514

    It is enlightening to compare their results for the three compounds that correspond to three of the six e-cigarette exhaled vapor compounds in the Indoor Air study.

    The Indoor Air study measured a concentration of 25 mcg/m3 of Acetone, which converts to 10.39 PPB. In Diskin’s study, Acetone ranged from 293-870 PPB.

    The Indoor Air study found 10 mcg/m3 of Isoprene, which converts to 3.54 PPB. Compare to 55-171 PPB in Diskin’s study.

    The Indoor Air study found 3 mcg/m3 of Acetaldehyde, which converts to 1.64 PPB, compared with 2-5 PPB in Diskin’s study.

    Therefore for these three compounds, bystanders would be in greater danger if exposed to exhaled breath of ordinary non-smoking, non-vaping citizens.

    Three additional compounds were noted in the Indoor Air study. The quantities were reported as micrograms per cubic meter by the German researchers. OSHA Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) are expressed as milligrams per cubic meter. To convert to mg/m3, divide the mcg value by 1000.

    2-Butanone (MEK) = 0.002 mg/m3 (OSHA PEL = 590 mg/m3)

    Acetic acid = 0.014 mg/m3 (OSHA PEL = 25 mg/m3)

    Formaldehyde = 0.016 mg/m3 (OSHA PEL = 0.661 mg/m3)

    When all the scientific data are considered, we must conclude that bystanders are in no danger whatsoever from exhaled vapor, as the highest concentration measured represents a mere 2.4% of the OSHA PEL, and the remaining 5 compounds represent a fraction of 1% of the OSHA PEL.

    reply.Submitted by sglantz on Fri, 2012-09-21 07:16.
    OSHA PEL is not an appropriate standard for involuntary exposure
    Several people have submitted responses to this post (and posted Twitter tweets), such as the comment above, pointing out the the levels of toxic chemicals e-cigarettes put into indoor air are lower than Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Permissible Exposure Levels (PELs).

    Without commenting on whether the specific exposure levels that are claimed in the comment, the problem with this argument is that OHSA PELs were established for occupational exposures for workers working in a hazardous environment (like a chemical plant) where some exposure to toxins is unavoidable.

    These levels are much higher than permitted ambient exposures. (Cigarette companies made similar arguments against restrictions on use of conventional cigarettes indoors years ago.) The PEL is simply not an appropriate standard.

    The important point is that the emissions of these toxic chemicals is not zero and there are no safe levels of exposure to carcinogens.

    More important, indoor exposure to toxic e-cigarette emissions is completely avoidable by simply not allowing use of e-cigarettes indoors. As with conventional cigarettes, people should not be forced to breathe toxic chemicals to support someone else’s nicotine addiction.

    reply.Submitted by Anonymous on Fri, 2012-09-21 14:55.
    By this logic, many many things should be banned
    If it is “the right thing” to ban something because it creates a situation where carcinogens that could potentially result in tiny amounts of exposure to humans, then pretty much everything would be banned.

    reply.Submitted by sglantz on Fri, 2012-09-21 16:19.
    You micharacterize my comment
    Because e-cigarettes put measurable levels of toxins into the air I am recommending that their use not be permitted indoors where use of other pollutingnicotine delivery devices (conventional cigarettes) is not allowed.

    They should also not be marketed or sold to children, since they are delivering an addictive drug.

    They should also not be allowed to be marketed with claims that they assist in smoking cessation until there is actual good independent evidence that such claims are true.

    reply.Submitted by Anonymous on Fri, 2012-09-21 10:52.
    Tobacco industry excuses versus reality
    We have every right to ban the unregulated use of any delivery method for a toxic recreational drug that has any potential to harm others whatsoever.

    Until it is conclusively proven that exposure to e-cig vapour in the concentration, duration, and frequency generated if vaping is permitted everywhere is as safe as or safer than not being exposed to it–the only acceptable standard for a non-essential such as nicotine–e-cigs must and should be banned from use in public.

    There is also the risk of normalizing addiction, so e-cigs should also be banned in any public place, including outdoors, where people under the legal age for consent may be present.

    We have spent enough time fighting to protect people from addiction and secondhand smoke. We do not owe it to anyone to become lab rats or sacrificial lambs in yet another scheme by a corrupt industry to enrich its coffers by hooking vulnerable people on a toxic non-essential for life through manipulative and mendacious marketing.

    And while e-cigs may reduce harm for already addicted smokers, they are still considerably more harmful than not using them at all. Makers owe it to us to carefully and rigorously test their product and agree to regulation before, not after, e-cigs are unleashed on the public.

    At this point, e-cigs look like just another another tobacco industry lie designed to placate people into accepting unnecessary risks that they owe no one simply so that the addicts from which it makes its money are not inconvenienced in accessing their next fix.

    reply.Submitted by Anonymous on Thu, 2012-09-20 11:19.
    E-cigs
    Since 2009, e-cigs are banned in Brazil. In addition E-cigs in Brazil are considered tobacco products, it means e-cigs are not allowed in closed spaces. This paper is one more support to the Brazilian measure, specially because the carcinogenic compounds sometimes don´t obey the classic relation dose X response.

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      My response to stan which Im sure wont be posted:

      The important point is that the emissions of these toxic chemicals is not zero and there are no safe levels of exposure to carcinogens

      My dear Stanton the man just proved humans exhale higher levels of the same chemical components than an e-cig. By your own definition you require even humans be outlawed from public places. If you cant see the absurd yet. The air is a combination of all these things not just e-cig or tobacco smoke,car exhaust,restaraunt grill smoke ,human breath and even your breath and emissions.

      You have backed yourself and your movement into a hole it cannot survive.

      Absurd claims and magical mystical harm claims are what witch trials and the Inquisition were all about.

      Perhaps its time you simply say Im sorry and please forgive me to the smokers and quietly retire from public persecution and let public health get back to looking and preventing real health crisis like food borne illnesses and pathogens. This latest catastrophe in tobacco prohibition is a miserable failure and put science back to the time of the SALEM WITCH TRIALS.

      Time to stop bleeding the patient Stan.

  14. harleyrider1978 says:

    Sep 22, 2012 – 17:02 Clear verdict expected on strict smoking ban
    http://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/swiss_news/Clear_verdict_expected_on_strict_smoking_ban.html?cid=33534456

    Voters have the final say this Sunday about proposals to tighten anti-smoking laws and tax breaks for elderly home owners. Both initiatives are likely to fail, but a plan to promote musical education is set to win a majority according to opinion polls.

    Supporters of stricter regulations against second-hand smoke want to outlaw smoker’s lounges with waiter service and special bars or cafes for tobacco users.

    They say an estimated 10,000 people working in the restaurant sector face serious health risks because they are subjected to second-hand smoke.

    The Lung League – supported by health organisations, trade unions and centre-left parties – collected enough signatures to force a national vote in a bid to impose a uniform nationwide law banning smoking in indoor working places, but allowing cantons to state exceptions.

    However, the business community, centrist and rightwing parties as well as the government have come out against the initiative.

    Opponents have argued that the proposed restrictions go too far, threatening the interests of the restaurant sector and interfere with the cherished federalist system giving cantons a large degree of autonomy. They say it does not make sense to amend a hard-fought compromise decided by parliament three years ago.

    Currently eight of the 26 cantons, particularly in French-speaking western Switzerland, have banned smoking from restaurants and bars altogether. They only tolerate special rooms without waiter service.

    The emotional campaign in the run-up to voting day was marked by allegations of deliberate misinformation by opponents of the initiative.

  15. garyk30 says:

    “marked by allegations of deliberate misinformation by opponents of the initiative.”

    How vicious, they told the Truth!!!

  16. Pingback: Swiss Plebiscite Update | Frank Davis

  17. beobrigitte says:

    According to your theory, the term Passive Smoking is wrong, because it implies that someone smokes – and smoking is undisputedly harmful.

    The word comes from the Third Reich, where the Nazis had already taken action against the so-called Passivrauchen (passive smoking), and the word remains in use today.

    Prof. med. Grieshaber, when replying to this, is very polite. He could easily have added that not only the word “Passivrauchen” was adopted from the Nazi era. It isn’t only the word which has been revived by tobacco control…..

  18. Pingback: Grieshaber on the Tobacco Products Directive | Frank Davis

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