Five Years On

Somehow or other I ended up today watching YouTube videos of the 2009 TICAP (The International Coalition Against Prohibition) Conference. Here’s Gian Turci’s memorable speech at the conference on YouTube (the one at the TICAP website doesn’t seem to be working):

The conference was held in Brussels, and a few days before it was due to start the EU revoked the use of EU property booked for the conference.

In an unprecedented move, the EU Bureau cancelled the conference with no record on their meeting agenda and without communication or right of reply to the sponsoring MEP, who was left to discover the truth by rumours almost a week later. These astonishingly undemocratic revelations were based upon unsubstantiated false claims and a demand that no debate should be allowed, and were submitted by an anti smoking group opposed to the content of the event.

For decades the anti smoking industry has grossly perverted science for their own ideology; it comes as no surprise to us whatsoever that they are now perverting democracy and freedom in the very heart of the EU.

The event marked the dawning of my realisation that the EU was also the enemy of smokers. Up until that time I’d been pro-European. How times change!

And I believe that it was none other than UKIP and Nigel Farage who helped to rapidly arrange another venue for the conference to use. And so it was also the time when my opinion of Nigel Farage and UKIP began rising. They were the friends of smokers.

Five years on UKIP’s fortunes have risen dramatically. And BMA doctors are now openly calling for tobacco prohibition (which they weren’t back then). And e-cigarettes have swept the world. And unfortunately Gian Turci is dead.

If nothing else, it goes to show that the situation is a dynamic one, even if it may often seem as if nothing ever changes.


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31 Responses to Five Years On

  1. harleyrider1978 says:

    Oh it will change Frank and literally overnite when it does……………All political movements come to an end and this latest Progressive regressive movement will die to just like it did last time it brought about prohibition in the early 1900s and all repealed later on!

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      Some may find this interesting

      The World Bank and Tobacco Control: The Facts

      August 20, 2013

      Tobacco use is the world’s leading underlying cause of preventable death.
      •In the last decade, global deaths from tobacco have increased from 2.1 million to 6 million.
      •Every year 600,000 non-tobacco users, mostly women and children, die from exposure to tobacco smoke.
      •Worldwide, 200 million adult women smoke cigarettes. In 25 countries, girls smoke more than boys.
      •Smoking is responsible for about 20% of global tuberculosis (TB) incidence, and reduces the effectiveness of TB treatment.
      •Between 2000 and 2008, total costs attributable to tobacco in China more than quadrupled, from US$7.2 billion to US$28.9 billion.
      •In Bangladesh, direct costs of smoking are estimated at US$386 million, or more than 1% of GDP.
      •Between 2003-2008, 11.3% of Egypt’s total health expenditure was used to treat tobacco-related illness.
      •In all World Health Organization (WHO) regions except in Europe, cigarettes became much more affordable between 2000 and 2010.

      The World Bank has been a global leader on tobacco control.
      •Since 1991 the World Bank’s policy has been not to lend, invest in, or guarantee investments or loans for tobacco production, processing, or marketing.
      •A 1999 Bank report, Curbing the Epidemic: Governments and the Economics of Tobacco Control, contributed to adoption of the WHO Framework Convention for Tobacco Control.
      •The Bank’s Economics of Tobacco Toolkit helps researchers analyze the economics of tobacco policies in their respective countries.
      •In Russia, the Bank engaged the government in policy dialogue on tobacco control through a report — Dying Too Young in the Russian Federation — which contributed to increases in tobacco and alcohol taxes.
      •The Bank’s strategy for health, nutrition and population identifies tobacco control as one of the key interventions for health outcomes and tobacco tax increases as a cost-effective measure for tobacco control.
      •The Bank is an active observer of WHO’s Framework Convention for Tobacco Control (FCTC) (pdf).

      The Bank is actively supporting countries to halt and reverse tobacco use.
      •In partnership with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, WHO and Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Health, Nutrition and Population Unit of the Human Development Network has launched an initiative to support country tobacco control efforts, with a focus on increasing taxes.
      •During 2012 and 2013, the Bank successfully provided technical assistance on tobacco taxation to The Philippines (pdf) and The Gambia, resulting in tobacco tax reforms in both countries.
      •In 2013 the Bank launched the technical dialogue and a study in Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan.
      •The Bank partners with WHO FCTC’s (pdf) Secretariat missions to assess implementation progress and issues related to Articles 6 (taxation), 15 (illicit trade), recent missions included: Burundi, Colombia, Kyrgyzstan, Senegal and Sierra Leone.
      •The Bank collaborates with multiple in country and global partners, including academia and civil society to ensure coordination at country level on tobacco control and tobacco tax policies.

      • harleyrider1978 says:

        The trail always leads back to its source

        Obama to nominate Dartmouth president to head World Bank …


        Mar 23, 2012 · … a leader on improving health care in developing world, tapped by Obama to become World Bank … bank while a European has been in charge

        • harleyrider1978 says:

          Iro Cage

          ”As the largest contributor to the bank and the IMF, the United States has the most voting shares on their boards at roughly 16%. The United States and Europe together have roughly half these shares, and have long been able to impose their will in matters of leadership.”

          That kind of says it all doesn’t it?

        • harleyrider1978 says:

          Now it isn’t so hard to see how 166 countries were basically forced to sign the FCTC.

      • nisakiman says:

        Bloody hell, Harley, where do they get their figures from?

        •In the last decade, global deaths from tobacco have increased from 2.1 million to 6 million.
        •Every year 600,000 non-tobacco users, mostly women and children, die from exposure to tobacco smoke.

        “…600,000 non-tobacco users, mostly women and children…”

        There’s a nice emotive little soundbite. It may be a figment of some zealot’s fevered imagination, but it will play well with the hard-of-thinking politicos globally.

        They really have no shame, do they. They lie through their teeth without even a hint of a blush of embarrassment.

      • carol2000 says:

        If anyone scoffs at the idea that there’s a global conspiracy, show them this. The root of the anti-smoking movement is the global oligarchs.

    • c777 says:

      Yes, BIG changes are in the air, about half of the people have now twigged what’s going on, they realise the system has become rotten to the core and needs replacing with something far more accountable.

      • jaxthefirst says:

        I do think that people are beginning to wake up (although it’s taken a very, very, very long time, I have to say). The reason I say this is that last week my OH was talking to a gent who has been working for the last 30 years as one of the legal advisers to one of the major UK newspapers and he admitted to said OH that there was so much covering-up and wink-wink-nudge-nudge, friends-of-friends, “don’t publish that because you’ll upset my good chum xxx and he’ll give us grief” non-reporting of news that you wouldn’t believe. But he did say that there is a change of heart amongst even mainstream media readers these days and that many of the letters and correspondence which the paper receives these days are heartily mistrustful of the stories that are reported and correspondingly cynical about any mealy-mouthed “promises” or “pledges” or “declarations” made by politicians of all colours.

        He didn’t feel that this was due to any sudden flashes of insight on behalf of the public but felt that it was simply due to the fact that politicians have so consistently promised X, only to then deliver the complete opposite and that these contradictions have come so thick and fast over recent years that even the most intellectually-challenged members of the public couldn’t help but see it. He also said that politicians’ seeming inability to ever admit that they have been wrong or that they have made a bad decision – still less to reverse that decision – was now no longer going unnoticed. In short, politicians have become complacent and too big for their boots, and were now reaping the results of such an arrogant, we-know-best approach. They may think that they’ve got the media in their pockets (which they have, largely) and that through careful manipulation of stories they can get away with it, but ultimately real-life experience will trump whatever people read in the national rags every time, and despite the papers’ best efforts, it’s happening much too often now for people to ignore it.

        He didn’t say – because as a non-internet user, my OH didn’t ask him – whether he felt that the increased use of the internet and blogs like these had helped this process along by being about the only arena in which doubting voices could be heard, but I can’t help but think that it must have done. There’s a long way to go, of course, because many people are still stuck in the mindset that the newspapers are the best way to keep informed about what’s going on in the world, but I think that this view, too, is diminishing as internet use grows and people begin to realise how much the newspapers are not telling them. It’s a start, at least. So, keep up the good work, Frank.

  2. harleyrider1978 says:

    Eurozone unemployment remains high as economy lags
    July 1, 2014 – 8:05 AM

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      Seems you got your own page Frank from the Nazis with love

      • junican says:

        Cousin, my friend, we have known for ages that Dear Frank is recognised by TC as a thorn in their side. But why should that be, since Frank is just a voice in the wilderness (according to TC)?
        Is it possible to consider this:
        Young or Old, smokers are ‘outlaws’, regardless of their own specific wishes and desires. Smoking is already a PROHIBITED activity. 1920 is already here and now. The first ‘salami slice’ equals the whole chop to bits.
        The UK Smoking Ban equals the whole of PROHIBITION. You cannot slice it up. The Smoking Ban is a solid lump of PROHIBITION.

        The WHO equals PROHIBITION of anything and everything which equates with ‘pleasure’, apart from its own ‘pleasure’ resulting from its world-wide grossly inflated power. Tobacco Control, despite its aspirations, is not Stalin. Despite its power over politicians, it does not really exist. It is disembodied, just like a ghost. Perhaps that is the reason that politicians are easily recruited. Perhaps they believe in ghosts. The WHO does not really exist. Think about it.

      • smokingscot says:

        The covering page is here:

        They accuse several individuals as well as their commentators of various misdeeds whilst covering themselves with a lengthy General Disclaimer that reads:

        “None of the authors, contributors, sponsors, administrators, system operators, or anyone else connected with or the University of Bath will be responsible for the appearance of any material considered defamatory, offensive, inaccurate, unlawful or misleading, nor will they be responsible for your use of the information contained in these web pages, or the pages TobaccoTactics links to”.


        So one rule for them, and another for Frank, Dick, others and of course us lot what comment.

  3. Fredrik Eich says:

    And BMA doctors are now openly calling for tobacco prohibition (which they weren’t back then). – Frank

    Not sure if that is totally true.

    We call on Tony Blair’s government to ban tobacco

    quote from Lancet
    via VGIF

  4. harleyrider1978 says:

    Building a Solid Case: Cigarette Smoking and Epigenomic Alterations

    Wendee Nicole was awarded the inaugural Mongabay Prize for Environmental Reporting in 2013. She writes for Discover, Scientific American, National Wildlife, and other magazines.

    Smoking is a leading cause of premature death and disease worldwide,1 but figuring out just how it causes cancer and other diseases has proven more challenging. Several recent studies have shed light on one possible answer: Smoking modifies the epigenome, changing methylation patterns of genes, which in turn can alter gene expression. In this issue of EHP, a team of researchers at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences not only corroborates smoking-related associations previously reported for a number of CpG sites but also identifies new sites.2

    CpG sites are cytosine and guanine nucleotides separated by a single phosphate that are found in gene promoter regions. Over the past few years, epigenome-wide association studies have suggested that smoking alters the methylation patterns of a number of CpG sites across the human genome.

    When a cell divides, the daughter cell copies the methylation marks that the original cell had, and that can continue to influence whether a gene is transcribed even though the primary DNA sequence is not altered,” says Jack Taylor, head of the NIEHS Molecular and Genetic Epidemiology Section, who oversaw the study. If an environmental exposure can alter the epigenetic profile of the DNA, in turn influencing which genes are transcribed and affecting risk of disease, “that’s a big deal,” Taylor says.

    In the current paper, the authors compared DNA methylation and history of cigarette smoking using data collected from the NIEHS Sister Study.3 This landmark project involves a cohort of more than 50,000 women whose sisters were previously diagnosed with breast cancer.

    The study confirmed smoking-related associations for 10 previously identified CpG sites. Two CpG sites of particular interest are located on the AHRR and CPOX genes. AHRR is a tumor suppressor that also detoxifies polyaromatic hydrocarbons and regulates metabolism of dioxin, while the CPOX gene is involved in synthesis of heme (a component of hemoglobin). Smoking is known to increase heme synthesis, and the authors theorize that smoking might lead to increased expression of this gene and altered methylation.

    “The Taylor article is a good addition to the body of evidence to support the previously identified markers, and identifies two new loci that could be of important biological interest,” says Natalie Shenker, a clinical researcher in the Epigenetics Unit at Imperial College London. “These two loci were also on our list of top hits,4 but did not reach the stringent cut-off for significance in our statistical analysis.”

    The current study found that all 12 CpG sites identified showed a consistent trend of increasingly altered methylation from current smokers to past smokers to never-smokers, suggesting that methylation patterns may self-restore to some extent after a person quits. It also provides further evidence that DNA methylation patterns may serve as accurate long-term biomarkers for smoking.

    • carol2000 says:

      CpGs are the first thing viruses head for. In order to keep this post from landing in the “vault,” I’ll just post this link:

      Including viruses that aren’t implicated as carcinogens, such as influenza. (The emerging roles of AhR in physiology and immunity. N Hao, ML Whitelaw. Biochem Pharmacol 2013 Sep 1;86(5):561-70.) “In addition to T lymphocytes, the AhR also appears to play a vital role in B cell maturation, and regulates the activity of macrophages, dendritic cells and neutrophils following lipopolysaccharide challenge or influenza virus infection.”

      What a “coincidence” that everything the anti-smokers come up with to blame on smoking turns out to be caused by viruses. And then their studies don’t even mention this!

  5. harleyrider1978 says:

    If an environmental exposure can alter the epigenetic profile of the DNA, in turn influencing which genes are transcribed and affecting risk of disease, “that’s a big deal,” Taylor says.

    No mention of age factor in any of this……………….Or as Carol points out the issue of Bacterial and Viral components.

    • carol2000 says:

      “lipopolysaccharide challenge” is what bacteria do.

    • beobrigitte says:

      By co-incidence channel 4 news picked up on antibiotic resistant micro-organisms. When asking why the pharmaceutical industry has not developed more effective antibiotics in the last 20 years, it did not mention the cost/profit of development of such a (short term useful) antibiotic but it carefully avoided the mention the profit made of (ineffective) smoking cessation aids and used the profit made of churning out long term medication, such as statin and insulin, instead, to compare.

  6. smokervoter says:

    I would have had a problem with the guy that ran for president on the Libertarian ticket in 2012, Gary Johnson. His late wife was a major league antismoker. He’s a pretty smart guy and all but with the close familial antismoking connection – all bets were off. I went ahead and voted for Romney.

    If the Libertarian party is going to jump on the illiberal antismoking bandwagon they can kiss my arse.

    Well, check out what Gary Johnson is up to these days. He’s the CEO of Cannabis Sativa Inc. of Nevada. Here’s cute little quote from Mr. Liberty:

    One of the company’s prime products is a marijuana lozenge or cough drop, something Johnson hopes will catch on as an alternative to smoking.

    “I have a real aversion to smoking marijuana, I think most people have an aversion to smoking period,” Johnson said. “I’ve tried the product and my reaction is, number one, why would anybody ever smoke marijuana given this as an alternative?”

    Mr. Liberty Story

    I’m glad he only got 1% of the vote now. I somehow sensed a control freak glint in his eyes all along. We smokers have very well developed Health Nazi radar.

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      We smokers have very well developed Health Nazi radar


      • jaxthefirst says:

        Harley, I’ve always wanted to ask … what does the RO bit stand for (I can work out the rest!)? It’s a term you use a lot, and I can usually work these things out (being an old ‘un, not used to these phrases!) but this one always has me baffled!

        • Frank Davis says:

          ROFLMAO? Roll On Floor Laughing My Ass Off.

        • harleyrider1978 says:

          Sorry Im in a bit of a loser day……… the last 3 months Ive had car problems with everybody and the kid yesterday was coming to the house and the brand new timin belt I just put on the car 3000 miles ago snapped in half,putting the pistons into the valves!

          Now Ive got to find him a ride so he can keep on getting to school and work………..Man there just aint no justice anymore!

          So I guess its off to the buy me pay me lot for an old car or truck…………………

        • junican says:

          Damn it, Cousin!
          Been there done that – repairing and repairing. JUNK IT!

        • harleyrider1978 says:

          Cousin your right and its on the way to the crusher now along with his s-10 pickup that has everything wrong with it including tranny…………..

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