A Terrible Atrocity

Michael Siegel picked up the same story that I did last night:

According to an article in the Gloucester (UK) Citizen, the health scare over electronic cigarettes has led many adoption agencies in the UK to prohibit anyone who uses e-cigarettes from adopting children. In fact, some districts preclude anyone who has used an e-cigarette in the past 12 months from adopting.

His response was much the same as mine:

This story really turns my stomach. Moreover, it is just heartbreaking. How misguided this policy is. How devastating the consequences. Due to the anti-smoking groups’ dissemination of false and misleading information about the hypothetical consquences of vaping, actual harm is being done to many people.

This story reveals that not only is this harm being done to smokers who have decided to continue smoking rather than engage in a behavior that many health advocates say is as dangerous as smoking, but serious harm is also being done to smokers who have successfully quit using electronic cigarettes.

In other words, smokers who quit successfully using e-cigarettes are actually being punished for using e-cigarettes rather than an “FDA-approved” method.

The sad reality is that despite the most important ethical principle of medicine and public health being “to do no harm,” the anti-smoking movement is doing tremendous harm, both to the public’s health and to the lives of many ex-smokers.

Would Siegel have been heartbroken if it had been a couple of smokers who had disallowed from adopting?

I don’t know for sure, but I doubt it, somehow. He believes that secondhand smoke is toxic, after all. He would probably want to protect the chiiiildren.

But wouldn’t it be just as heartbreaking for smokers to be disallowed from adopting? And just as devastating? It does happen.

My own view, for what it’s worth, is that whether someone vapes is irrelevant to their suitability as parents. But then, I don’t think that e-cig vapour is in the least bit harmful.

And I also think that whether someone smokes or not is irrelevant to their suitability as parents. After all, both my (natural) parents smoked. And they were, I must say, excellent parents. But then, I don’t think that secondhand tobacco smoke is in the least bit harmful. In fact, I don’t think firsthand tobacco smoke is harmful either.

The sort of thing that, off the top of my head, I would regard as relevant to suitability would be whether the prospective parents have a suitable home, an income of some sort, be in good health, with no criminal or psychiatric record, and such like.

But there’s another question to be asked here. And it is this: Were the prospective parents harmed by being refused to be allowed to adopt? Michael Siegel certainly seems to think so.

It seems to me that for someone to be harmed, they have to be worse off as a result of what has been done. And in this case, they have been left in exactly the same (childless) situation that they were before. There’s been no change in their circumstances, except that they have had their hopes dashed.

Is someone harmed if their hopes are dashed? I think not.

Perhaps they might have been harmed if they forked out for a crib, a set of baby garments, nappies, rattles, and so forth. Then they would have wasted all that money. And that would perhaps be a loss, although it then might be said that they should have waited for permission to adopt before making such outlays of money.

I think the reason they were refused to be allowed to adopted is horrible and unnecessary. But I don’t really see that they have been harmed or otherwise injured in anyway.

Michael Siegel may not support banning vapers from adopting. But he does support smoking bans, because he regards secondhand smoke as toxic.

Might we not ask if smokers are harmed by being banned from smoking in public places?

Again, the question is, when smoking bans are introduced, do smokers lose anything?

And the answer is that they lose a great deal. They lose the welcome they were formerly afforded in pubs and cafes. “Exiled to the outdoors”, they may lose an entire community of friends and acquaintances. They may also lose their jobs. And they may also lose their homes. And even their lives.

These are all, in various ways, very real losses. They are heartbreaking and devastating losses. And far more heartbreaking and devastating than the one-off disappointment of being disallowed from adopting.

Yet antismokers like Michael Siegel, while they may find a vaper’s disappointment “stomach-churning”,  are entirely unmoved when far worse happens to smokers. And happens to millions of smokers everywhere, every day, in plain sight.

These people have double standards.  They keep one set of standards for those of whom they approve. And another for those of whom they disapprove.

Michael Siegel approves of vaping (as a means of stopping smoking), but strongly disapproves of smoking. And so he is outraged when a vaper is refused permission to adopt a child, but is utterly indifferent when smokers are not only routinely refused the same permission, but also made to suffer any number of additional slights and injuries.

The Rest of the Story needs a slight rewrite:

The sad reality is that despite the most important ethical principle of medicine and public health being “to do no harm,” the anti-smoking movement is doing tremendous harm, both to the public’s health and to the lives of many ex-smokers and smokers.

To which might be added:

And Michael Siegel has himself already contributed greatly to the harm being done.

The smokers need to be remembered. And when the tremendous harm that is being done to countless millions of them is included in the tally, what is being done to them will be seen as a terrible atrocity.

And one day that is exactly how it will be seen.

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51 Responses to A Terrible Atrocity

  1. Harm is physical or mental damage or injury : something that causes someone or something to be hurt, broken, made less valuable or successful, etc.

    Tobacco Control has caused Harm of every kind that can be brought up or invented.

    The biggest Harm done is a loss of public faith in government,law and medical science.Besides making people fear nothing.

    Now we can add a new one adoption harm to good parents versus junk science and an absolutely open ended hatred against a legal activity that isn’t even sinful or immoral.

    • Economics of Prohibition

      Prohibition’s supporters were initially surprised by what did not come to pass during the dry era. When the law went into effect, they expected sales of clothing and household goods to skyrocket. Real estate developers and landlords expected rents to rise as saloons closed and neighborhoods improved. Chewing gum, grape juice, and soft drink companies all expected growth. Theater producers expected new crowds as Americans looked for new ways to entertain themselves without alcohol. None of it came to pass.

      Instead, the unintended consequences proved to be a decline in amusement and entertainment industries across the board. Restaurants failed, as they could no longer make a profit without legal liquor sales. Theater revenues declined rather than increase, and few of the other economic benefits that had been predicted came to pass.

      On the whole, the initial economic effects of Prohibition were largely negative. The closing of breweries, distilleries and saloons led to the elimination of thousands of jobs, and in turn thousands more jobs were eliminated for barrel makers, truckers, waiters, and other related trades.

      The unintended economic consequences of Prohibition didn’t stop there. One of the most profound effects of Prohibition was on government tax revenues. Before Prohibition, many states relied heavily on excise taxes in liquor sales to fund their budgets. In New York, almost 75% of the state’s revenue was derived from liquor taxes. With Prohibition in effect, that revenue was immediately lost. At the national level, Prohibition cost the federal government a total of $11 billion in lost tax revenue, while costing over $300 million to enforce. The most lasting consequence was that many states and the federal government would come to rely on income tax revenue to fund their budgets going forward.

      • The greatest unintended consequence of Prohibition however, was the plainest to see. For over a decade, the law that was meant to foster temperance instead fostered intemperance and excess. The solution the United States had devised to address the problem of alcohol abuse had instead made the problem even worse. The statistics of the period are notoriously unreliable, but it is very clear that in many parts of the United States more people were drinking, and people were drinking more.

        There is little doubt that Prohibition failed to achieve what it set out to do, and that its unintended consequences were far more far reaching than its few benefits. The ultimate lesson is two-fold. Watch out for solutions that end up worse than the problems they set out to solve, and remember that the Constitution is no place for experiments, noble or otherwise

  2. Smoking Lamp says:

    As you report this is indeed a travesty.Not allowing adoption for persons who vape or smoke is a severe assault on a class of citizens. Imagine FDR, Churchill and the notables of several generations would be ineligible to adopt (including at least a couple sovereigns, several other presidents of the US, etc.). The tobacco control, healthiest, fascist madness needs to stop. Bans on smoking indoors, outdoors, in one’s own apartment, on public streets, and now smokers are being precluded from adopting children. When will politicians, the media, and civil society stand up to this? As Frank notes, there is no evidence (other than propaganda) that second hand smoke poses a risk. There are questions about the risk of active smoking as well. All the dissenting opinions have been suppressed but the data and questions remain.

    • Hey I only got banned from 2 small fry country newspapers today,I feel neglected!

      • Harley, there’s a difference: they’re probably not banning you for your opinion but for your posting style. A lot of board owners object to multiple long posts, especially cut and pastes. They figure, and I have to largely agree with them, that people have read the opening article and are mainly looking for pieces of brief additional information about the stuff in the article or looking for back-and-forth arguments to see where the “better argument wins” in the end. They’ll also *very* quickly dump you if they think you’ve come back under a different name.

        I very rarely get banned: I post under my real name, almost never cut and paste more than couple of sentences to back up a point I’m making*, and try to never post more posts or much longer posts than whoever I’m opposing. Once in a while I’ll vary from that (particularly sometimes in post length since I’m actually trying to explain what’s wrong with something that was said — and explanations like that, along with supportive facts, always take up more space) but I try to limit it. Use that sort of combination and you’ll usually be free to get your argument across on most (heh, not ALL, but most!) boards.

        – MJM

        *There’s an exception on that cut and paste rule: if you’ve spent some time writing a good original post on a particular news story, and then you find that SAME news story on another site, there’s no harm in reposting your same post to it. BUT… even then you can get into trouble: I did that one night on some big story on about a half dozen boards. My post was a good post, and not that long, but the Disqus-bot picked up that I’d posted the same material multiple times on different boards in a short period and evidently flagged me for a while as “possible spam” or somesuch. Some webmasters manually check their spam buckets for mistakes but a lot of them don’t and some won’t check even if asked politely.

        • One unbanned me after emailing them and asking why as I hadn’t broken any of there posting rules. They put 4 of my comments back up. But we know why the ban its because they don’t want facts destroying the propaganda story they just ran.

  3. “The biggest Harm done is a loss of public faith in government,law and medical science.”

    Harley, exactly. There’s a spillover effect: when people see their doctors or politicians spouting lies and/or nonsense on one subject, they’ll doubt them on another. I’d guess that our Free Choice supporters have a far greater proportion of Anti-Vaxxers than the general population. Why? Because we’ve learned that the medical professionals we depend on are either quite willing to lie as a means to an end or they’re simply as easily fooled by a slick campaign as the ordinary bloke on the street. So now, anytime we see the possibility of big medical/pharmaceutical corporations making a big profit by scaring people about something, we tend NOT to believe our doctors when they simply seem to be repeating the “party line.”

    It’s potentially one of the greatest harms of the antismoking movement.

    – MJM

    • Totally Agree Mike. I’d add when the antis themselves finally start screaming that’s to far many more start screaming too. It reminds me of a bridge to far………they stretched the mission so far out that nobody could support the others gains or losses. In the end the whole mission collapsed.

      But as all politically motivated agendas go,they run their course and then its discourse until finally its epic fail and even the politicians abandon the agenda.

      I don’t think we are very far from that point in time when it comes to smoking.

  4. Reblogged this on artbylisabelle and commented:
    Yes and I am sure that if governments didn’t show compassion to Aids victims the same would have been true for them, not on the same scale, of course. Dr. Siegel contributes where and how he discerns is correct. I don’t harbor a grudge against him. In the past year or more I have followed his blog, I never see him bashing smokers? I see him bashing unfair, corrupt and questionable practices of the Tobacco Control ANTZ, that are blind to an entire segment of the population, people who enjoy using tobacco. I realise his anti-smoking cause is a launching pad, but it isn’t his current crusade, I believe health is but that is threatened more than continuing to smoke, being it is only about the profits and not about the human lives involved.

    • Siegels still a full fledged Nazi who wouldn’t tell the truth about smoking for anything he just repeats the same BS time and again.

    • Frank Davis says:

      Michael Siegel is just another antismoker. He shares the same prohibitionist values as the rest of them. He just hasn’t followed the rest of them all the way. And that allows him to claim a bit of moral high ground, as he speaks up for vaping.

      There’s a long history of people like this, who climb on a bandwagon, and then get off after having led it for a while, claiming that things have ‘gone too far’. Sir Richard Doll famously dismissed the danger of passive smoking, while insisting on the dangers of active smoking. Now Michael Siegel dismisses the danger of vaping, while insisting on the dangers of passive smoking. In a few years time, one of his descendants will be dismissing the dangers of something or other, while insisting on the dangers of vaping. It never stops. And they’re all as bad as each other.

  5. waltc says:

    Harley brought up the Noble Experiment. By coincidence I came across this today, a parody of a parody written at the time and characterizing the position of the official prohibitionists in the face of reality. Any resemblance to other more recent prohibitions is purely…

    “Prohibition is an awful flop.
    We like it.
    It can’t stop what it’s meant to stop.
    We like it.
    It’s left a trail of graft and slime,
    It don’t prohibit worth a dime,
    It’s filled our land with vice and crime.
    But nevertheless, we’re for it.”

    All that being true of smoking bans –and the “crimes” include evicting old ladies and crippled WW2 vets, torturing the mentally and physically ill, denying jobs, health care, child custody, and public lives to smokers–I’m forced to wonder to what, if any, degree the ever-widening bans (prohibitions) have succeeded in stopping what they’re “meant to stop.” I believe that it’s other factors that have led to the decline in smoking (and rise in lying) –a more sophisticated use of propaganda, for one. I wonder too what percentage of Americans drank before, during and after prohibition. Anyone know?

    • I heard drinking dropped the first 2 years but that was only because the blackmarket had to have time to meet the demand. But remember there so called numbers of quitters cant be trusted anymore than those from alcohol prohibition times. Simply because everything they touch is always a lie slanted there way and for one reason to make claim there ban bullshit is working………….

      Yet even the government knows better

      Now how can We believe CDC numbers on smoking rates when even the Federal Government knows they are UNRELIABLE!

      Survey experts agree that survey respondents understate the true extent of their cigarette consumption. If taken as true, the responses in the surveys we examined, would suggest that, on average, only 70 percent of purchased cigarettes were reported to be actually consumed, which strains credulity. The substantial uncertainty surrounding the degree of underreporting of cigarette consumption in survey data necessarily generates large uncertainty about the magnitude of the federal tax receipts lost due to the illicit cigarette trade. Any estimate of federal tax loss based on survey data therefore should be regarded as only broadly indicative of actual receipts lost.4


      Read more at http://guardianlv.com/2014/12/smoking-on-the-decline-in-united-states/#FKdH61RKor0MKSgv.99

    • Frank Davis says:

      the Noble Experiment

      What the heck was ‘noble’ about it?

      I don’t see that there was anything ‘noble’ about prohibition. I think it was mean-spirited and controlling and just plain wrong. I don’t see why these prohibitionists are allowed to cloak themselves in a mantle of moral rectitude, when they’re actually very nasty people who would be best kept locked behind bars.

  6. I read the CDC operational plan for doing these smoker numbers awhile back.
    CDC polling methods

    They pick a state and in that state they pick a few select cities calling anywhere from 600-1200 numbers.

    The problem here is they tend to choose cities with high liberal leanings but also because that’s where they are able to maximize their propaganda to the masses more heavily and also impose enforcement more strongly.

    Yes these people will lie on both sides of the study.
    In Iowa just 6 months ago they discovered and OMG moment when they did ZeroCare signups and found the smoking rate had dropped in half from other surveys that had been performed in the past.

    The reason zerocare charges you out the ass for premiums doubling and even tripling if you state your a smoker……….

    Now this is likely the same thing NATIONWIDE………………

    Since they meaning the zerocare exchanges are desperately trying to sign up everyone they can in fact you don’t even have to pick a plan this year they said,just sign up and you wont be hit with penalties……..

    So knowing this and knowing its the poor as well as the rest as zerocare caused 10s of millions to lose their own insurance who will now have to sig up too or penalties.

    Point here is ZEROCARE is forcing people to identify themselves as non smokers and theyd do it on any survey form these days because they know any survey might get their name if they have your phone numbr they can simply cross reference it to zerocare applications and your PERJURED!

    Then we have the fact that the GOP just got control and thye are no lovers of the prohibitionists at least for the most part and the way its looking they plan to cut funding to these groups.

    So CDC and all of the anti groups have every reason to create a dramatic drop in smoker study to say see our tactics do work and we need more money bla bla bla……..

    SMOKE Aand Mirrors doesn’t even describe it well enuf.

    • Just like blackmarket cigarettes…………….smoking rates didnt go down the just bought them blackmarket instead and they cant count legal sales as meaning lowered rates any longer. Much less zreocare making people lie in phone inteviews with CDC in fear they will get busted over obamacare higher premiums for lying about smoking status on cross referenced data via the phone number.

      Insurance smoking fee could spur another vice: Lying about doing it

      Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, Americans looking to buy health insurance no longer have to answer questions about whether they’ve suffered diabetes, cancer or heart problems.

      Do you have a chronically sore back, a bum knee or a growing paunch? Don’t worry. Starting next year, insurers no longer will be allowed to hold such pre-existing troubles against you.

      But insurance companies may still ask about one health-related issue: tobacco use. If applicants ’fess up that they smoke or chew tobacco regularly, insurers can charge them up to 50 percent extra for premiums. That could amount to hundreds of dollars per month for some consumers.

      Des Moines tobacco shop owner Rich Bartlett expressed annoyance when he heard about the rule last month.

      “There’s a lot of people who make bad lifestyle choices. Why focus on one bad lifestyle choice?” he said. “You would think something like obesity could be in the same category. To just focus on smokers doesn’t seem fair.”

      Bartlett, who is a smoker, noted that the state and federal governments already have repeatedly raised cigarette taxes. Those taxes now run $2.36 per pack in Iowa, plus a 6 percent sales tax. That adds up to about $900 per year for a pack-a-day smoker, he said, which should be enough of a penalty.

      The premium surcharge will mainly affect people who buy their own health insurance instead of obtaining it through an employer or a government program.

      Some policies offered through employers also require a smoker surcharge.

      Full 50% surcharge allowed in Iowa

      Some states declined to let insurers charge extra premiums to tobacco users.

      Some other states lowered the allowed amount of the surcharge. But Iowa and most other states are allowing the full 50 percent surcharge.

      Iowa insurers vary in how much extra they’ll charge.

      CoOportunity Health, a new Iowa insurance carrier, is charging 49 percent extra. Cliff Gold, the company’s chief operating officer, said the premiums are justified because of the increased medical costs many tobacco users incur.

      Gold noted that tobacco users can avoid the extra premiums by agreeing to participate in tobacco-cessation efforts. For CoOportunity policyholders, that would entail participating online in three 20-minute educational sessions over two months. Participants also would be offered free stop-smoking aids, such as nicotine replacement patches or gum.

      “We certainly hope that people will go through with that process,” Gold said.

      Tobacco users who participate in the education sessions but fail to kick the habit would qualify for the lower premiums until the beginning of the next year, Gold said. Then, they could either retake the tobacco-cessation classes or pay the higher premium.

      Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield, which is Iowa’s largest health insurer, has set its 2014 premiums about 15 percent higher for people who say they use tobacco.

      “We’re trying to find a balance, because the more you charge, the more you’re encouraging people to not tell you the truth,” said David Brown, a Wellmark vice president.

      Brown doubts that increased health insurance premiums would lead many people to quit smoking. He noted how taxes have pushed up the habit’s cost. A pack of cigarettes can now fetch $7 or $8.

      “If that hasn’t put you over the edge, I don’t know if this will,” he said of the insurance premiums.

      Agent: ‘No way of enforcing’ honesty

      Both insurers acknowledged they will have to trust applicants to report their tobacco use truthfully.

      The enforcement issue is particularly thorny because of the way federal officials worded the question that insurance applicants must answer. The applicants are not asked a yes-or-no question about whether they use tobacco or not. Instead, they are asked if they use tobacco four or more times a week.

      “Isn’t that the dumbest question ever? There’s no way of enforcing it. None,” said Janis Van Ahn, a Johnston health insurance agent.

      Even if insurers could test applicants for the presence of nicotine, an applicant could claim that a positive result stemmed from the three Marlboros he allows himself each Friday night outside his favorite bar.

      How would an insurer disprove such a tale? Hire a private investigator to trail Mr. Three-Cigs-a-Week? Not likely.

      West Des Moines health insurance broker Lynn Schreder said agents were stunned to learn earlier this year about the tobacco question’s wording.

      “We were like, ‘Are you kidding me? Are we supposed to enforce this with a straight face?’ ” she said. “Why are they even bothering?”

      The situation is different in the life insurance marketplace. Before consumers can purchase those policies, they routinely undergo urine or saliva tests that check for nicotine.

      But such a test would be useless for health insurance purposes because of the way the new question is worded.

      “If you say you’re not a smoker, it’s kind of the honor system,” Schreder said. “I’m not going to come back and track you and follow you to see if you’re smoking.”

      Gold, the CoOportunity Health executive, agreed that it would be hard to judge the truthfulness of applicants who deny regular tobacco use.

      But he said such people could wind up in serious trouble if they are caught somehow.

      If they falsify their insurance applications, he said, “they’re committing fraud, and theoretically, they could be prosecuted.”

      Cancer Society opposed surcharge

      Surprisingly enough, the American Cancer Society opposed letting insurers charge extra to tobacco users.

      “It is a bit counterintuitive, but when you get down to it, we’re anti-smoking for sure, but we’re not anti-smoker,” said David Woodmansee, an associate director of the national group.

      Woodmansee, who is the Cancer Society’s point man on the Affordable Care Act, expressed fears that smokers would decline to purchase insurance after seeing the high premiums they face for 2014.

      They could be allowed to make that choice, because people whose premiums would amount to more than 9.5 percent of their income will be exempted from the new requirement that most Americans obtain health insurance next year.

      The situation could leave people without coverage for serious illnesses related to smoking, Woodmansee said. “In fact, tobacco users tend to need health insurance more than nonsmokers do.”

      He added that if the higher premiums induce smokers to lie on their insurance applications, they could later be unable to seek medical help if they decide to try quitting.

      “It really creates a Catch-22,” he said.

      Similarly, the Cancer Society has mixed feelings about the three-smokes-a-week loophole in the Affordable Care Act’s definition of a smoker. Of course, he said, the organization wants people to avoid any smoking, because even an occasional cigarette or dip of chewing tobacco can lead to addiction.

      On the other hand, he said, he would not want someone to go without health insurance because of premiums that were inflated by a Saturday night cigarette now and then.

      Bartlett, the Des Moines tobacco shop owner, pays about $550 per month for a health insurance policy for himself, his wife and their three children. He hasn’t looked into where his rates are headed for next year.

      If need be, he said, he could quit smoking to avoid a surcharge. He’s done it before, but it isn’t easy, especially when he stands in front of a wall of cigarette cartons all day at work.

      Bartlett predicted that instead of giving up cigarettes, many people will turn to another common bad habit.

      “They’ll just lie,” he said. “You know they will.”


  7. Smoking Lamp says:

    Against de-normalization…

    Maclean’s the Canadian news magazine has a new editorial out that counters the healthiest propaganda, bans, and censorship efforts. A key excerpt follows:

    “Lately, it has become popular for tobacco opponents to talk of “de-normalizing” cigarette use. New rules in Ontario and elsewhere, for example, have banned smoking outdoors in parks and sports fields—where second-hand smoke poses no legitimate health threat to others—to control what is considered normal, everyday behaviour. Plans to censor movies are similarly offensive, in that they also seek to limit what may be seen in public space. Disseminating information on the hazards of smoking remains an important function for the field of public health. But it is the not job of government to decide what normal looks like.”

    See: “Governments who want to ban smoking from films should butt out,” Maclean’s, 23 February 2015, http://www.macleans.ca/society/health/governments-who-want-to-ban-smoking-from-films-should-butt-out/

    • Heh… just added a bit o’ fun thar….

      ***Come See The New “Healthy Humphrey” Bogart version of CASABLANCA! ***

      In the news today! The new film sure to be a hit with those under 18 who’ve never seen the original, clocks in at a Twitterverse pace of just 7 and a half minutes long! Not a single wisp of smoke or mention of alcohol in even a single frame of this Renewed Masterpiece!

      According to Director/Snipper Michaelious McFadden, “Healthy Hump’s green lungs will delight children and adults alike as the film can now be enjoyed in its pure full comfort with no need to shield one’s eyes from Puffing Perversions (PP’s) strutting around the screen hacking their carcinogenic lungs onto the sound stage between their gasping lines!”

      According to industry executives, next in line is a new CGI version of “Breakfast At Tiffanies” in which Audrey Hepburn shows just just how sexy it can be to munch on a celery stick while courting unknown authors!


      For those with a bit more of a leaning toward reality, I’d recommend reading Lie #2 at http://TheTruthIsALie.com where the claim that “MTV Is FILLED With Smoking” is put to the test with a stopwatch!

      When you’re done, come join us and keep warm at the bookburning where this week’s feature is “Tom Sawyer” — a nefariously nasty nicotine novel by a Mr. Samuel Clemens (who tried to hide his identity from the Health Police by calling himself Mike Twane or some such) in which CHILDREN ran off to an island and… and… I’m sorry, I can’t go any further… the horror, the horrrrrrorrrrrrrrrrrr!!!!!!!!!!!

      Michael J. McFadden
      Author of “Dissecting AntiSm*k*rs’ Brains”

      • Mark Twain said it right over a hundred years ago:

        “The Moral Statistician.”
        Originally published in Sketches, Old and New, 1893

        “I don’t want any of your statistics; I took your whole batch and lit my pipe with it.

        I hate your kind of people. You are always ciphering out how much a man’s health is injured, and how much his intellect is impaired, and how many pitiful dollars and cents he wastes in the course of ninety-two years’ indulgence in the fatal practice of smoking; and in the equally fatal practice of drinking coffee; and in playing billiards occasionally; and in taking a glass of wine at dinner, etc. etc. And you are always figuring out how many women have been burned to death because of the dangerous fashion of wearing expansive hoops, etc. etc. You never see more than one side of the question.

        You are blind to the fact that most old men in America smoke and drink coffee, although, according to your theory, they ought to have died young; and that hearty old Englishmen drink wine and survive it, and portly old Dutchmen both drink and smoke freely, and yet grow older and fatter all the time. And you never try to find out how much solid comfort, relaxation, and enjoyment a man derives from smoking in the course of a lifetime (which is worth ten times the money he would save by letting it alone), nor the appalling aggregate of happiness lost in a lifetime by your kind of people from not smoking. Of course you can save money by denying yourself all those little vicious enjoyments for fifty years; but then what can you do with it? What use can you put it to? Money can’t save your infinitesimal soul. All the use that money can be put to is to purchase comfort and enjoyment in this life; therefore, as you are an enemy to comfort and enjoyment where is the use of accumulating cash?

        It won’t do for you to say that you can use it to better purpose in furnishing a good table, and in charities, and in supporting tract societies, because you know yourself that you people who have no petty vices are never known to give away a cent, and that you stint yourselves so in the matter of food that you are always feeble and hungry. And you never dare to laugh in the daytime for fear some poor wretch, seeing you in a good humor, will try to borrow a dollar of you; and in church you are always down on your knees, with your ears buried in the cushion, when the contribution-box comes around; and you never give the revenue officers a full statement of your income.

        Now you know all these things yourself, don’t you? Very well, then, what is the use of your stringing out your miserable lives to a lean and withered old age? What is the use of your saving money that is so utterly worthless to you? In a word, why don’t you go off somewhere and die, and not be always trying to seduce people into becoming as ornery and unlovable as you are yourselves, by your villainous “moral statistics”?”

        Also, Benjamin Franklin said,
        “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”

        • Wonderful quote from Twain! If *ANYONE* ever literally spun in his grave, he must be one who’s twirling around at them censoring the boys’ smoking pipes on Huck’s island!


        • Ya as soon as you mentioned Twain it dawned on me the moral statistician. He lived the same exact thing in his day we are now including the abuse of statistics to push and agenda, You’d think they’d change the playbook some from 100 years ago but they didn’t. Its all an exact copy of the last movement save for the bible thumpers but even that can be found in RWJFs coalition building partners.

        • O/T but the DOW just hit 18,200 its the same thing that happened right prior to the great depression due to currency wars and printing magic money……………it all then collapsed again.

        • Yellen is saying no you cant audit the FED. The FED is literally the only one buying treasury debt bonds and keeping the game going,oh theres others on wall st doing it too,but likely their ordered to do it thru the FEDS cash window on daily basis.

      • margo says:

        Excellent, MJM!

  8. Rose says:

    A study of smokers after years of intense government anti-smoking activity shows that the constant bullying is working.

    “The research dispels a commonly-held perception that lighting up helps relieves stress, authors from University College London said.”

    Smokers ‘more likely to suffer from depression’

    “The study of nearly 6,500 people over the age of 40 found 18 per cent of smokers reported depression and anxiety compared with 10 per cent of non-smokers and 11 per cent of ex-smokers.”

    According to the report: “Quitting smoking could be the key to improving not only your physical health, but your mental health too.”

    British Heart Foundation associate medical director Mike Knapton said: “There is a belief from many smokers that smoking reduces anxiety and stress, which is in turn causing many smokers to put off quitting. When smokers light up, the feeling of reduced stress or relaxation is temporary.”

    Call off the dogs and we will be dancing in the streets.

    • Rose says:

      “As smoking becomes increasingly denormalised and communities vocal about their dislike of smoking, there is abundant evidence that smokers internalise this negativity.”

      We know, but to use that to pretend that tobacco smoking itself causes the depression is exactly the sort of cheap misdirection we have come to expect.

      • Rose says:

        Can you imagine another section of the public being treated like this?


        Fags over family? Smoker’s choice sparks hate from loved ones
        February 27, 2013

        “Nearly a third of smokers surveyed admit their children or family hates them smoking and a quarter enjoy smoking less nowadays because they feel more guilty about it.”

        “Our Associate Medical Director, Dr Mike Knapton, said: “These figures reveal the emotional burden smokers endure by feeling guilty about the impact their addiction has on family life and their finances.”

        The technique explained.

        “The TV commercial showed fatty deposits being squeezed from the artery of a 32-year-old smoker and depicted a group of smokers in a pub brushing fat dripping from their cigarettes off their clothes.”

        “Portraying the advert as being by the BHF rather than the government was also a smart move, Mr Pringle said.

        Regular changes in politicians and civil servants have led to frequent switches between “carrot and stick” approaches to anti-smoking publicity, he said.

        This was detrimental to campaigns and he recommended both approaches should run at the same time.”

        And they still expect us to vote for them?

        • Thank Rose! Fat dripping out of a cigarette? How about smoke coming out of french fries? Sheeesh!

          “he recommended both approaches should run at the same time.” Hey, sure, double your fun!


        • Mummies’ clogged arteries take smoking, fatty foods, lethargy out of the mix

          By Tom Valeo, Times Correspondent

          Tuesday, April 23, 2013 4:30am

          You do everything right: You exercise every day, include lots of fruits and vegetables in your diet, never smoke, minimize the stress in your life and take medication to keep your cholesterol and blood pressure under control. You’re preventing modern life from ruining your heart, right? • Well, maybe modern life isn’t as much of a problem as merely living. CT scans of 137 ancient mummies from three continents show that our ancestors had plaque in their arteries, too, even though they never smoked, never tasted ice cream or pork rinds, and had no choice but to exercise vigorously every day of their lives.

          According to the study, which appeared recently in the Lancet, at least one-third of the mummies, who lived as long as 5,000 years ago, had arteries that had narrowed as a result of atherosclerosis — the buildup of fatty deposits in the arterial wall. Apparently the cardiovascular system has a tendency to clog up over time.

          “Our research shows that we are all at risk for atherosclerosis, the disease that causes heart attacks and strokes,” said Gregory Thomas, medical director of the MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute, Long Beach Memorial Medical Center, and one of the authors of the study. “The data we gathered about individuals from the prehistoric cultures of ancient Peru and the Native Americans living along the Colorado River and the Unangan of the Aleutian Islands is forcing us to look for other factors that may cause heart disease.”

          The diet of the mummies varied widely, but contained ample protein and vegetables (and presumably no cupcakes or pork rinds). Aside from the few Egyptian mummies who lived their lives as pampered royalty, these ancient people used their muscles constantly.

          Yet, the atherosclerosis was found in mummies who died in what we today would consider middle age (almost none made it to 60). And just as today, their arteries became more narrow as they got older. CT scans of modern people have demonstrated that after the age of 60 for men and 70 for women, some degree of atherosclerosis is all but universal. One large study found that teens ages 15 to 19 showed early signs of atherosclerosis, and 50 percent already had conspicuous accumulations of plaque.

          “All of us age in every tissue of our body,” says Dr. Donald LaVan, a professor of medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and a spokesman for the American Heart Association. “It’s just a question of how rapidly it happens. There’s nothing you can do to stop aging. All you’re trying to do is prevent it from advancing faster than it should.”

          The authors of the paper agree. “Although commonly assumed to be a modern disease, the presence of atherosclerosis in premodern humans raises the possibility of a more basic predisposition to the disease,” they concluded.

          So what can we do to thwart that predisposition?

          Above all, don’t smoke, says LaVan, and engage in regular physical activity.

          “After that, we’re in the realm of treating disease,” he says. “If your lipids are up or you have hypertension, take care of it. If you have problems with rhythm disturbances, that must be treated, too, because it impairs the ability of heart to pump efficiently. We’re looking at common sense here, but getting patients to do these things is tough.”


        • Rose says:


          British Heart Foundation: Fatty Cigarettes – 2004
          https: //www.youtube.com/watch?v=ef3gofQcOKk

          I’ve taken the precaution of breaking the link, it really is vile.

    • That’s funny Rose,Ive always heard everyone say when bans come down they just smoke more running from one place to the next and double up their smoking during breaks and drives to work or anywhere. In fact since the bans came down I smoke about 30% more than I did pre-ban.

    • margo says:

      This study’s got the cart before the horse – a lot of people who get depressed and anxious find that smoking brings relief (which is more than we can say for the stuff the doctor would give them). Surely these people realise that!

  9. Busted: Breast Cancer, Money, and the Media – How Breast Cancer Statistics Are Being Manipulated

    Busted: Breast Cancer, Money, and the Media – How Breast Cancer Statistics Are Being Manipulated


    At the edge of the Pacific, women believe they’re part of an unexplained breast cancer cluster. It’s a fear created by media hype and medical researchers who should know better. Since the ’90s, the San Francisco Chronicle has published a steady stream of articles claiming the affluent, mostly white women of Marin have the highest rate of breast cancer in the country, as much as 35 percent higher than the national average. A new documentary plans to dispel the myths.

    Year after year, breast cancer researchers spend millions of dollars studying why women in the wealthiest communities are targeted by the dread disease. This research agenda is dominated by businesses with skin in the cancer game, including AstraZeneca, Avon, Chevron, Baker Hughes. Meanwhile, women suffer from needless anxiety, terrified that cancer is stalking them.

    What if women in Marin are in fact much less likely to get or die of breast cancer than are women in less affluent communities? What if tens of millions of health dollars are being wasted chasing after statistical flukes? Medical experts without corporate ties say there is not a breast cancer epidemic in Marin. Listen to Patricia T. Kelly, Ph.D., the author of “Assess Your True Risk Of Breast Cancer”:

    The short story is that affluent women get more mammograms than women with less access to health care. The excessive use of mammography increases the number of small cancers detected. But it also increases the number of false positives, and results in the treating of non-cancerous tissue. Simply put: overdiagnosis leads to overtreatment–subjecting women to surgery, radiation, and chemical toxins that cause painful side effects and cost lots of money.

    Yes, some lives are saved by early detection, but the widely believed statistic that “one out of eight women will get breast cancer” is a misnomer. More accurately, nine out of 1,000 American women over the age of 60 die from breast cancer each decade. And black women have by far the highest mortality rates.

    The Solution

    Supported by the Fund for Investigative Journalism, the Pulitzer Prize-winning Point Reyes Light is following the money. “Busted” explains how breast cancer statistics are manipulated by governmental and non-profit organizations that can benefit by marketing fear instead of solutions.

    Investigative journalist Peter Byrne has interviewed dozens of experts and examined hundreds of medical studies and public records. The documented results of this investigation call on America to reform the science of breast cancer research. Scientists can focus on prevention by modeling risks for individuals and populations realistically.

    Unfortunately, our cancer databases are so riddled with errors that breast cancer incidence studies are unreliable. A major study of the California Cancer Registry warned that, “Reporting the quality of care derived from [cancer registry] data with such validity problems could anger providers and seriously undermine public confidence in this process.”

    • Supported by the Fund for Investigative Journalism, the Pulitzer Prize-winning Point Reyes Light is following the money. “Busted” explains how breast cancer statistics are manipulated by governmental and non-profit organizations that can benefit by marketing fear instead of solutions.

  10. Mike if your around whats the computations on CO levels versus cig smoke release in a sealed room. I cant find it in toxic toxicology. 35PPM is the osha pel use to be 50.

    The 15 domestic brands ranked lowest by the trade commission in the number of milligrams of carbon monoxide released per cigarette are these: Carlton, king size (hard pack), 0.5 milligrams; Benson & Hedges, regular, 1.0; Carlton, king-size menthol, 1.0; Tareyton ultra-lowtar, king-size, menthol, 1.0; Carlton, king size, 2.0; Now, king size (hard pack), 3.0; Now, king size, menthol (hard pack), 3.0; Now, king size, menthol, 3.0; Now, king size, 3.0; Triumph, king size, menthol, 3.0; Decade, king size, menthol, 3.0; Kent III, king size, 4.0; Decade, king size, 4.0; Triumph, king size, 4.0; Doral II, king size, 4.0.


    I gather 5mg is equal to 2PPM


  11. garyk30 says:

    About ‘debunking’ and posting comments.
    A long time ago, MJM told me to keep my comments to 300 words or less.

    A written ‘soundbite’, so to speak.

    Here are some more guidelines that may be followed.

    Click to access Debunking_Handbook.pdf

    Debunking Handbook

    Debunking myths is problematic.
    Unless great care is taken, any effort to debunk misinformation can inadvertently reinforce the very myths one seeks to correct.

    To avoid these “backfire effects”, an effective debunking requires three major elements.

    First, the refutation must focus on core facts rather than the myth to avoid the
    misinformation becoming more familiar.

    Second, any mention of a myth should be preceded by explicit warnings to notify the reader that the upcoming information is false.

    Finally, the refutation should include an alternative explanation that accounts
    for important qualities in the original misinformation.

    A common misconception about myths is the notion that removing its influence is as simple as sticking more information into people’s heads.

    This approach assumes that public misperceptions are due to a lack of knowledge and that the solution is more information – in science communication, it’s known as the “information deficit model”.

    But that model is wrong: people don’t process information as simply as a hard drive downloading data.

    Is it possible to completely eliminate the influence of misinformation?

    The evidence indicates that no matter how vigorously and repeatedly we correct the misinformation, for example by repeating the correction over and over again, the influence remains detectable. The old saying got it right – mud sticks.

    Several different “backfire effects” have been observed, arising
    from making myths more familiar, from providing too many arguments, or from providing evidence that threatens one’s worldview.

    The last thing you want to do when debunking misinformation is blunder in and make matters worse.
    So this handbook has a specific focus – providing practical tips to effectively debunk misinformation and avoid the various backfire effects.

    To debunk a myth, you often have to mention it – otherwise, how will people know what you’re talking about?

    However, this makes people more familiar with the myth and hence more likely to accept it as true.
    Does this mean debunking a myth might actually reinforce it in people’s minds?

    Not mentioning the myth is sometimes not a practical option. In this case, the emphasis of the debunking should be on the facts.

    Communicate your core fact in the headline.
    Your debunking should begin with emphasis on the facts, not the myth.
    Your goal is to increase people’s familiarity with the facts.

    The Overkill Backfire Effect
    One principle that science communicators often fail to follow is making their content easy to process.

    That means easy to read, easy to understand and succinct. Information that is easy to process is more likely to be accepted as true.

    Common wisdom is that the more counterarguments
    you provide, the more successful you’ll be in debunking a myth.
    It turns out that the opposite can be true.

    When it comes to refuting misinformation, less can be more.
    Generating three arguments, for example, can be more successful in reducing misperceptions than generating twelve arguments, which can end up reinforcing the initial misperception.

    The Worldview Backfire Effect

    The third and arguably most potent backfire effect occurs with topics that tie in with people’s worldviews and sense of cultural identity.

    For those who are strongly fixed in their views, being confronted with counter-arguments can cause their views to be strengthened.

    Even when people are presented with a balanced set of facts, they reinforce their pre-existing views by gravitating towards information they already agree with.

    A way in which information can be made more acceptable is by “framing” it in a way that is less threatening to a person’s worldview.

    Filling the gap with an alternative explanation

    Assuming you successfully negotiate the various backfire effects, what is the most effective way to debunk a myth?

    When people hear misinformation, they build a mental model, with the myth
    providing an explanation. When the myth is debunked, a gap is left in their mental model.
    To deal with this dilemma, people prefer an incorrect model over an incomplete model. In the absence of a better explanation, they opt for the wrong explanation.

    The most effective way to reduce the effect of misinformation is to provide an
    alternative explanation for the events covered by the misinformation.

    When you debunk a myth, you create a gap in the person’s mind. To be effective, your debunking must fill that gap.

    One gap that may require filling is explaining why the myth is wrong.
    This can be achieved by exposing the rhetorical techniques used to misinform.
    The techniques include cherry picking, conspiracy theories and fake experts.

    Anatomy of an effective debunking

    Bringing all the different threads together, an effective debunking requires:

    • Core facts—a refutation should emphasise the facts, not the myth.
    Present only key facts to avoid an Overkill Backfire Effect;

    • Explicit warnings—before any mention of a myth, text or visual cues should warn that the upcoming information is false;

    • Alternative explanation—any gaps left by the debunking need to be filled.
    This may be achieved by providing an alternative causal explanation for why the myth is wrong and, optionally, why the misinformers promoted the myth in the first place.

    • garyk30 says:

      For instance:

      Cigarette smoking does not cause smokers to die more often from Heart Attacks.
      Never-smokers are 14% more likely to have died due to a heart attack than smokers.

      Dr.R.A. Doll’s 50 year long study of British doctors’ deaths showed that a smoker is less likely to die from a Heart Attack than is a never-smoker.
      Only 28 per 100 smokers’ deaths were due to a heart attack.
      32 per 100 never-smokers’ deaths were due to a heart attack.

      That is a 14% increase in never-smokers death percentage over smokers death percentage.

      Anti-smokers lie about heart attack deaths because tobacco control is a multi-billion dollar business and the anti-smokers make a great deal of money from lying.

      150, or so, words and the claim ‘smoking causes heart disease’ was never once mentioned.

      • I see your point Gary and Mikes. The one great thing is it only takes one study to destroy decades of deceit and belief. The Mummy study has had that effect across the board even last week when Obamas own healthiest dropped saturated fats from being causal for heart disease and the mummy study was released 2 years ago……….others are following up with it in other areas of expertise to destroy other long held beliefs………

        • hen we go back an check where the claims originally came from and the medical establishments objections to such claims,tey were over ruled by higher ups and the new dogma became the new belief system told to everyone just like the LC BS and smoking.

          I imagine Luther Terry was forced to make his 1964 SG report rather than be a willing accomplice.

      • Yep! A solid nutshell works better than a whole bag o’ nuts sometimes! :>

        Three things to be careful with in citing Doll or Boffetta 22% LC reduction type studies though:

        1) You don’t necessarily need a hotlink since some boards don’t like ’em, but sometimes it’s even better to go without one anyway and cite an actual report title and/or authoritative source: e.g. “The official conclusion of the 2023 Surg Gen Rpt under Dr. Mikey, as reported in the BMJ Issue 6969, p.9696, stated ‘Smokin’ is dandy! It’s jes’ like candy!’ ” What’s important is that you’ve told the reader that they can quickly and easily check to see that you’re telling the truth.

        2) Sometimes you’re better off citing material that’s not too far away from what people have commonly heard. E.G. I try to cite the Boffetta study only when it’s really relevant (e.g. in response to a claim about car-smoking and children that’s coupled with claims of “no safe level” or “all studies agree.” I do that because of #3:

        3) If you’re going to cite something that goes STRONGLY against “common knowledge” or “authoritative opinion” you need to acknowledge that fact, point out that it’s a minority position, and THEN point to why it’s authoritative enough that it should be considered as important anyway. That open acknowledgement will keep the “passers by” audience from simply dismissing it as either a lie, a misinterpretation, or simply a crazy result by someone paid by Big T — you defuse the attack on it.

        Think about how you yourself react to some sort of political news in another area and how ready you are to accept that it’s credible, and then put yourself in the shoes of someone who’s a total neutral or just an “Innocent” mild Anti. You are never going to seem authoritative enough in their eyes to suddenly throw open the Gates Of Salvation and have them reborn in the Church Of Free Choice through a single posting. What your goal should be is to move them toward noticing those Gates and getting a peek inside so they think, “Hmmm… maybe there’s more worthwhile in there than I’d thought!”

        That’s part of the problem with conspiracy theory type analyses: EVEN IF A PARTICULAR ONE IS TRUE… 99% of people will lean toward rejecting it right away because they have a strong core belief that conspiracy theories are false (which they often are — it’s usually easy to drudge up all sorts of little facts and paste them together so that they LOOK like a coherently planned whole… even when it’s obvious that they’re not.) Just like the Antismokers have led the general population step-by-step from believing that smoking can cause lung cancer (which is quite plausible and pretty well supported even if you want to argue against its being “absolutely” proven) down the path to where they’ll even believe that thirdhand smoke causes anal hernias, WE have to lead them step-by-step back to some level of reality. Remember that 30 years ago secondhand smoke was still largely a butt of comedians’ jokes. Today thirdhand smoke is reported on as being as real as the nose on your face. People don’t jump from one extreme to another easily: It took the Antismokers decades of years and many thousands of millions of dollars to do achieve it. Since so much of it is false, it will be a little easier for us to restore a realistic view… but on the other hand we don’t have many thousands of millions of dollars (or even cents!) and we’d like to do it a bit more quickly than in three or four decades. So once in a while we can skip a step … but not too big a one!


  12. Campaign to make city smoke-free slow to develop

    Three months into its launch, the city’s campaign to be smoke-free by June is at a standstill.

    Last November, Mayor Toni Harp partnered with the University and several city departments to inaugurate the New Haven Smokeout, a city-wide effort to eliminate smoking. The American Cancer Society’s Great American Smokeout — a one-day event on the third Thursday of November that encourages smokers to quit — spurred the proposed campaign, which includes plans to implement anti-smoking education programs in public schools and to provide city residents with resources to quit. The Smokeout aimed to have the city be smoke-free by June, but City Hall spokesman Laurence Grotheer said this deadline would likely be missed.

    “We’re working on it,” Grotheer said. “But there’s nothing to report yet.”

    The city, however, has published on its website a document listing local clinics that conduct programs to help smokers quit. The document also provides links to websites with advice about quitting smoking.

    Additionally, the document includes directions on how to use a statewide hotline — dubbed the “CT Quit line.” The hotline offers counseling services in English and Spanish and sets up callers with personal “Quit Coaches” who help them to develop personalized plans to quit smoking.

    Grotheer said easing city residents’ efforts to quit smoking was a priority for both Harp and Health Department officials. Lower rates of smoking in the city will drive down healthcare costs, he added.

    “We’re trying raise awareness among residents of the harmful health effects of smoking,” he said.

    Martha Okafor, City Community Services administrator, said the city officials involved in the New Haven Smokeout have divided into four task forces. The first team is working to develop posters as part of a city-wide anti-smoking campaign. Another group is drafting legislation to designate public parks and school grounds as smoke-free zones. A third team has focused on developing youth prevention for schools. Finally, a fourth team is working to help city residents quit smoking.

    Okafor added that the first event of the New Haven Smokeout would be the “Kick Butt Campaign” in March — an education program targeting city youth.

    Charaign Sesock, media relations officer for the American Cancer Society, said that, while she has seen several college campuses use the Great American Smokeout to organize a day’s worth of awareness events, she has not yet seen a city use the day to launch a larger campaign.

    As part of the New Haven Smokeout, Southern Connecticut State University pledged to become a smoke-free campus. Although Yale is a partner in the effort, the University has not announced any plans to follow suit.

    Harp named Marta Moret SPH ’87, the wife of University President Peter Salovey, as the city’s partner in the Smokeout campaign. At November’s launch, Moret said the University would provide spaces for city officials to meet throughout the campaign and discuss its progress. Grotheer could not confirm whether or not these meetings have occurred.

    In addition to assisting residents to quit smoking, city officials pledged to make smoke-free housing available through the New Haven Smokeout and to develop an anti-smoking curriculum for New Haven Public Schools. These programs have yet to be carried out.

    In April 2004, Connecticut’s state legislature passed the Clean Indoor Air Act which prohibits smoking in workplaces with five or more employees as well as in bars, restaurants, hospitals and other public establishments.

    • As part of the New Haven Smokeout, Southern Connecticut State University pledged to become a smoke-free campus. Although Yale is a partner in the effort, the University has not announced any plans to follow suit. lol

    • “Okafor added that the first event of the New Haven Smokeout would be the “Kick Butt Campaign” in March — an education program targeting city youth.”

      Same strategy used by terrorist-types everywhere: put The Children out there as human shields and wave them around like flags. Anyone who attack will look like they’re targeting children and will be reviled.

      The tactic works well … until it’s pointed out what they’re doing. It’s an indirect form of child abuse: they’re basically using our biologically hardwired love for our children and abusing that love for those children. It’s very little different than Saddam Hussein smiling on international television and patting and ruffling the hair of one of the American children Iraq briefly held hostage before our attacks.

      – MJM

  13. beobrigitte says:

    According to an article in the Gloucester (UK) Citizen, the health scare over electronic cigarettes has led many adoption agencies in the UK to prohibit anyone who uses e-cigarettes from adopting children. In fact, some districts preclude anyone who has used an e-cigarette in the past 12 months from adopting.

    In view of this we must assume that not only politicians sell their connections well. The anti-smokers’ hatred of smoking and anything that looks like smoking leads them onto careless paths.

    This is as sickening as it is that SMOKERS are denied adoption. On Siegel’s blog many commenters point out the obvious: ANTISMOKERS WOULD SOONER KEEP CHILDREN IN CARE HOMES THAN LET LOVING SMOKERS/VAPERS ADOPT THEM.

    I do have a friend who grew up in one of such care homes. What she told me about these homes is hard to believe, but it explains the way she is. (Hard work, needing a lot of “slack”!!!!)
    On contrast, I grew up in a poor but loving family of which some members did smoke AROUND US CHILDREN.

    Siegel is an anti-smoker. Wasn’t there a case that he testified in which ended with tobacco companies having to pay quite a lot of money? Siegel cannot backpeddle when it comes to smoking (although it would be easier for him if he did) – when this anti-smoking nonsense has died, he will be asked a few (for him costly) questions.

    I do have a question to the adoption agencies: I take it you do not take away prospective parents’ computers to check for child pornography? So, a NON-SMOKING/NON-VAPING PEADOPHILE is given the “green light” ?


  14. jaxthefirst says:

    I’d have thought that the biggest harm done by this wicked policy – whether directed at smokers or vapers – is to the children who, were it not for this quasi-religious fear of a plant, could be enjoying the security and affection of a loving family. Perhaps not “harm” in the way you describe it, Frank (with which I agree), but certainly the loss of the best kind of start in life that most children enjoy, but a few tragic ones don’t.

    So it’s a bit surprising that Seigel who, after all, in order to conceal his real, prejudiced nature by playing the “ cheeldren” card whenever it has suited him in the past – should so make so glaring an omission in this article, reserving his sympathy only for the good little drones who have done as he and his colleagues have suggested and given up real smoking. What a faux pas!

    C’mon Doctor, get with the programme! Start letting the mask slip now, and you just might give the game a way for the all rest of your anti-smoking chums …

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