Prisons, Disbelief, and Zika

A reminder that smoking bans are being introduced in UK prisons:

Smoking is currently allowed only in prison cells and exercise yards, but the government intends to ban smoking in all indoor areas across the 136 prisons in England and Wales to reduce health risks…

A smoke-free policy will be implemented in all prisons in Wales from January 2016, and at four English prisons – Exeter, Channings Wood, Dartmoor and Erlestoke – from March 2016, before being rolled out to other jails.

The Prison Governors Association (PGA), which supports the ban, admitted it could not predict how prisoners would react when it comes in, and said it would monitor the initial phase to ensure stability and safety were maintained.

I hope they burn a few prisons down.

And from Dick Puddlecote:

Erm, hands up who isn’t aware of tobacco control advice that smoking is dangerous. Anyone, anyone?

Well, I’m aware of Tobacco Control advice. But that doesn’t mean I pay any attention to it. In fact, I no longer believe a word they say about tobacco or e-cigarettes or pretty much anything else. Why should I believe everything these self-styled ‘experts’ say? In fact, why should I believe anything they say?

Which reminds me of an earlier post by DP from a Spectator discussion, which featured Dr Michael Fitzpatrick saying:

Andrew Neil: Whose medical advice do you follow Dr?
Fitzpatrick: I avoid all of it!

Same here. Fitzpatrick has written a book: The Tyranny of Health. An Amazon reviewer approvingly reproduced a few lines from it:

The government’s public health policy is really a programme of social control packaged as health promotion.

Medicine has become a quasi-religious crusade against the old sins of the flesh.

While resources are poured into projects that use health to enhance social control, real health needs – especially those of the elderly – are neglected.

Only an epidemiologist could believe that data based on ‘selfreported’ levels of alcohol consumption can provide a useful basis for quantitative studies.

Such is the degradation of medical ethics that it is now considered virtuous for doctors to take on the role and responsibilities of the police and to subordinate the best interests of their patients to the dictates of government drug policy.

I can’t disagree with any of that.

And there’s some doubt that the Zika virus is responsible for microcephaly:

The Zika virus infection has been linked to newborn babies with the birth defect microcephaly. This is a congenital condition in which babies are born with unusually tiny heads.

The notion, however, has recently been challenged by a group of Argentine physicians. The group suspects that the Zika virus is not to blame for the rise in microcephaly cases, but that a toxic larvicide introduced into Brazil’s water supplies may be the real culprit.

I wonder how long it’ll take Tobacco Control to blame microcephaly on smoking? They blame it for pretty much everything else, after all.

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About Frank Davis

smoker
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32 Responses to Prisons, Disbelief, and Zika

  1. Joe L. says:

    I wonder how long it’ll take Tobacco Control to blame microcephaly on smoking? They blame it for pretty much everything else, after all.

    Too late, Frank. The WHO has already attributed microcephaly to smoking:

    http://www.livescience.com/53699-microcephaly.html

    Slower brain growth can be caused by a number of factors. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the most common causes include:
    – infections in the womb: toxoplasmosis (caused by a parasite found in undercooked meat), rubella, herpes, syphilis, cytomegalovirus and HIV
    – exposure to toxic chemicals: maternal exposure to heavy metals like arsenic and mercury, alcohol, radiation, and smoking
    – genetic abnormalities such as Down syndrome
    – severe malnutrition during fetal life

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      absolute Insanity!

    • Frank Davis says:

      You couldn’t make it up, could you?

      • Rose says:

        Oh you could, over the years anti-tobacco seems to have claimed every ailment for which the real cause was as yet unknown.

        • margo says:

          Maybe not quite unknown, Rose, but certainly not disclosed to the public – blame them for their own diseases, tell them it’s their stupid ‘lifestyle’ what done it. I think that’s what it’s all about and always has been.

        • Rose says:

          Margo

          Lifestylers

          “The cost of sloth, gluttony, alcoholic intemperance, reckless driving, sexual frenzy, and smoking have now become a national, not an individual, responsibility, all justified as individual freedom,” asserts Dr. John Knowles, the influential president of the Rockefeller Foundation.

          “But one man’s or woman’s freedom in health is now another man’s shackle in taxes and insurance premiums.” Knowles sternly warns that “the cost of individual irresponsibility in health has become prohibitive”

          Rockefeller Medicine Men Chapter 5 near the bottom of the page.

          BLAMING THE VICTIM: NEW PROMINENCE
          FOR AN OLD IDEOLOGY

          Note 110 – Conference on Future Directions in Health Care: The Dimensions of Medicine, Sponsored by Blue Cross Association, Rockefeller Foundation, and University of California (San Francisco) Health Policy Program, New York, Dec. 1975
          http://soilandhealth.org/wp-content/uploads/0303critic/030312brown/brown5.htm

      • beobrigitte says:

        Rose, great find yet again!

        “The cost of sloth, gluttony, alcoholic intemperance, reckless driving, sexual frenzy, and smoking have now become a national, not an individual, responsibility, all justified as individual freedom,” asserts Dr. John Knowles, the influential president of the Rockefeller Foundation.

        “But one man’s or woman’s freedom in health is now another man’s shackle in taxes and insurance premiums.”

        I am dismayed to find that Dr. Knowles, the INFLUENTIAL (!) president of the Rockefeller foundation missed out GREED, which is the cause for a phenomenon that was virtually unknown in my youth: BURN-OUT SYNDROME.
        A person experiencing such a burn-out will be unable to return to work for quite a long time, often years. What was that bit about “another man’s shackle in taxes and insurance premiums”?

        No drinker/eater/smoker/wreckless driver etc. has ever run this cost up to the level of the cost of a “burn-out”. Furthermore, SMOKERS pay extortionately towards the treatment of the people off sick with burn-out and other ailments. I, for one will never get a return of what I have paid into the system in involuntary and EXTORTIONATE voluntary taxes. (That’s why I no longer pay these voluntary taxes – it is being used for useless clubs that seek to persecute me).

        Dr Knowles? REALLY???? I expect a certain intellectual level of these professionals. This one gives the impression he can’t even see beyond tobacco control financed bullshit, let alone having the common sense that raise questions.

    • beobrigitte says:

      Slower brain growth can be caused by a number of factors. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the most common causes include:
      – infections in the womb: toxoplasmosis (caused by a parasite found in undercooked meat), rubella, herpes, syphilis, cytomegalovirus and HIV
      – exposure to toxic chemicals: maternal exposure to heavy metals like arsenic and mercury, alcohol, radiation, and smoking
      – genetic abnormalities such as Down syndrome
      – severe malnutrition during fetal life

      “and smoking”. So-sooooo…. Boy, my generation must have reproduced with each time a miracle occurring… I can’t explain otherwise extortionate %age of our offspring which started their work life after higher education.
      Or, perhaps it is due to the parents (us) having been exposed to heavy metals like arsenic and mercury [I must admit, mercury is fascinating!] and managed to avoid excessive exposure to radiation [that, taking away the x-ray thingy when buying shoes in my youth].
      WHO in typical fashion – omitting information – infections in the womb: toxoplasmosis (caused by a parasite found in undercooked meat)…
      http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Toxoplasmosis/pages/introduction.aspx

      My next question: how many cat owners and how many people who like a steak “blue”
      have given birth to micro-cephalic babies?
      Using Down’s is despicable. The WHO people (once they get their heads out of Tobacco Control’s backsides) should remember that Downs occurs in great variation – and a lot of the time the Down’s affected individual has greater problems with the physical side of this genetic (trisomy 21) occurrence.

      Anyway, WHERE exactly does SMOKING fit in?

  2. Cecily Collingridge says:

    I enjoyed Fitzpatrick’s book.

    I also recommend an earlier publication: ‘The Death of Humane Medicine and the Rise of Coercive Healthism’ by Petr Skrabanek, 1994 – https://bradtaylor.files.wordpress.com/2009/06/death-of-humane-medicine.pdf

  3. harleyrider1978 says:

    linked to …. That dribble again!

    The rise of a pseudo-scientific links lobby

    Every day there seems to be a new study making a link between food, chemicals or lifestyle and ill-health. None of them has any link with reality.

    spiked-online.com/newsite/article/13287#.U6ibAzYo59A

  4. waltc says:

    I dunno, Frank. Seems to me the anti-smokers are the pinheads. Maybe it’s the lack of exposure to smoke. Who but a pinhead would favor a prison ban and expect it to go smoothly?

  5. PJH says:

    https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=Ab9u_AyU9aUC&pg=PA241&lpg=PA241&dq=microcephaly+on+smoking&source=bl&ots=J6ygEvjNPv&sig=8le3w3osAiUKg7eHbsiUg2WXQsk&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiGsrD79_vKAhUIaxQKHb_3BIYQ6AEIJjAB#v=onepage&q=microcephaly%20on%20smoking&f=false

    “Maternal cigarette smoking, as well as maternal substance abuse of cocaine and other illegal drugs is a common cause of microcephaly (Dominguez et al 1991, Loebstein & koren 1997.)”

    • slugbop007 says:

      I like to find out the credentials of these experts. Most of the time they are just Public Health zealots with limited knowledge of medicine.

  6. PJH says:

    https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=Ab9u_AyU9aUC&pg=PA241&lpg=PA241&dq=microcephaly+on+smoking&source=bl&ots=J6ygEvjNPv&sig=8le3w3osAiUKg7eHbsiUg2WXQsk&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiGsrD79_vKAhUIaxQKHb_3BIYQ6AEIJjAB#v=onepage&q=microcephaly%20on%20smoking&f=false

    “Maternal cigarette smoking, as well as maternal substance abuse of cocaine and other illegal drugs is a common cause of microcephaly (Dominguez et al 1991, Loebstein & koren 1997.)”

    • Cecily Collingridge says:

      Thank you PJH for tracking this down. Note how unequivocal the claim is that maternal cigarette smoking IS a common cause of microcephaly. Two papers are cited as evidential sources so I’ve taken a look at them.

      Dominguez et al’s study was on ‘Brain and Ocular Abnormalities in Infants With In Utero Exposure to Cocaine and Other Street Drugs’. I have only seen the abstract. It says:

      “We describe 10 infants with developmental delay and congenital cerebral anomalies who were found to have had in utero exposure to vasoactive drugs. Nine infants had ophthalmological abnormalities; these included strabismus, nystagmus, and/or hypoplastic optic discs. Six mothers used cocaine, one used cocaine and heroin, one used only heroin, one used amphetamine, and one used phenylpropanolamine. Each of these cerebral anomalies (agenesis of the corpus callosum, septo-optic dysplasia, schizencephaly, hydranencephaly, congenital hydrocephalus, porencephaly, and cerebral infarctions) can be attributed to insults at different stages of development. There appears to be a relationship between the time of prenatal drug exposure and the type of cerebral anomaly, evoking malformations, disruptions, or fetal strokes. Since many or possibly all of these anomalies are thought to have a vascular origin, it seems appropriate to implicate prenatal exposure to vasoactive drugs.”

      Loebstein and Koren’s 1997 review was on ‘Pregnancy outcome and neurodevelopment of children exposed in utero to psychoactive drugs: the Motherisk experience.’ They looked at cocaine, alcohol and anti-depressants. Smoking was only mentioned ONCE:

      “It is important to note that cocaine use by pregnant women
      can be divided into 2 distinct modes. The 1st is use by
      addicted women, who tend to use cocaine throughout pregnancy
      and, in addition, usually have clustering of other
      reproductive risk factors such as cigarette smoking, alcohol
      consumption, tendency to low socioeconomic classes, poor
      prenatal medical care, and the use of other drugs of abuse.”

      I looked through the references given at the end of this paper too and, again, there wasn’t a SINGLE study into smoking, let alone anything showing it IS a confounding risk factor as opposed to MAY be one.

      So, there is NO EVIDENCE here, as far as I can see, that there is any connection between smoking and microcephaly.

      The WHO need to back up their own claim.

  7. Rose says:

    The smoking ban in prisons ruliing in prisons is now being challenged by Michael Gove no less.

    Smoking ban could risk staff and inmate safety at state-run prisons like Dartmoor, claims Government
    February 15, 2016

    “A “particularly vigorous” ban on smoking in state-run prisons such as Dartmoor could cause discipline problems and risk the safety of staff and prisoners, the Government has told the Court of Appeal.
    Justice Secretary Michael Gove is challenging a High Court declaration that the legal ban on smoking in public places applies to state prisons and all Crown premises in England and Wales.”

    “The ruling blocking Crown immunity was won by sex offender Paul Black, an inmate at HMP Wymott in Lancashire, who has been serving an indeterminate sentence since 2009.”

    “James Eadie QC, representing the Justice Secretary, on Monday asked three appeal judges – Lord Dyson, Master of the Rolls, sitting with Lord Justice McCombe and Lord Justice David Richards – to strike down the High Court’s “unsustainable” decision.

    Mr Eadie argued that no statute binds the Crown unless that statue expressly states that it does, or it is a “necessary implication” of the legislation. The Health Act did not expressly state, and there was no implication.”
    http://www.plymouthherald.co.uk/Smoking-ban-risk-staff-inmate-safety-state-run/story-28738021-detail/story.html

    Repeat Blackburn sex offender wins landmark ruling to ban smoking in jail
    6 March 2015

    “In 2007, Black, then 48 and of Preston New Road, was given an indeterminate sentence after carrying out a sex act on a train from York to Burnley.
    He also has several previous convictions for violent and sexual assault, including the rape of a 14-year-old girl from Blackburn, and the rape of an 18-year-old girl in Rossendale.

    Black was ordered to serve at least 192 days before being considered for parole, a sentence described as ‘ridiculous and disgusting’ by his victim, who said he would re-offend if he was released.

    However, he cannot be released on licence from HMP Wymott until the Parole Board decides he is no longer a danger to the public.”

    “Although Black did not win a ruling prisoners were specifically entitled to access the NHS anti-smoking hotline, the judge said the justice secretary should reconsider the issue in light of the ruling.”
    http://www.lancashiretelegraph.co.uk/news/11838644.Repeat_Blackburn_sex_offender_wins_landmark_ruling_to_ban_smoking_in_jail/

    • beobrigitte says:

      Ah, I see.
      Repeat Blackburn sex offender wins landmark ruling to ban smoking in jail
      6 March 2015

      Does this mean the rapist has shown that he is a good citizen and will be released from prison soon?
      He also has several previous convictions for violent and sexual assault, including the rape of a 14-year-old girl from Blackburn, and the rape of an 18-year-old girl in Rossendale.

      I guess a smoking ban in prisons is far more important to Tobacco Control. (And, sadly, to our home country). I can only hope that this guy next rapes a big Tobacco Control Lobbyist’s daughter – or maybe even that of our current regime.
      Looking forward to see what then happens.

  8. harleyrider1978 says:

    Trump smokes challengers in Cigar Aficionado poll

    Cigar smokers overwhelmingly back Donald Trump for president, giving him more votes of support than any other Republican or Democratic candidate, according to a new Cigar Aficionado poll of 7,500 readers. The magazine said that Trump won…

    http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/trump-smokes-challengers-in-cigar-aficionado-poll/article/2583203

  9. harleyrider1978 says:

    BTW folks I officially went 48 hours cold turkey of the dosed down pain meds. No withdrawels and very minor pain. So Im done with it after last years ICU stay and broken ribs and chest Im off the pain meds they put me on that hooked me on. 7 months later. Its been one hell of a fight.

  10. harleyrider1978 says:

    Sorta looks like tobacco control is being abandoned pretty much everywhere.

    Hong Kong must sustain the war on tobacco even as smoking rates continue to decline

    South China Morning Post (subscription)

    Health authorities attribute the decline in smokers to effective tobacco … 47.4 per cent in the first year after smoking bans were extended to all indoor …

  11. Rose says:

    Just of interest, the first mention of cancer in association with tobacco that I have found is a simile used by James 1st to describe tobacco’s first use as a medicine in Counterblaste.

    “making so one canker or venime to eate out another”
    https://www.laits.utexas.edu/poltheory/james/blaste/blaste.html

    canker (n./adj.) 1 grub that destroys plant buds and leaves, cankerworm, parasite
    http: //www.shakespeareswords.com/Play-Definitions.aspx?IdPlay=32

    Etymology: Middle English canker “spreading sore,” from an early French dialect word cancre (same meaning), from Latin cancer “crab, cancer”
    http: //www.wordcentral.com/cgi-bin/student?canker

    Which may have lead to misinterpretation over the years.

    His previous and probably more famous work was written in 1597

    “Daemonologie — in full Daemonologie, In Forme of a Dialogie, Divided into three Bookes. By James Rx — was written and published in 1597 by King James VI of Scotland (later also James I of England). The book endorses the practice of witch hunting. James begins the book:

    The fearefull aboundinge at this time in this countrie, of these detestable slaves of the Devil, the Witches or enchaunters, hath moved me (beloved reader) to dispatch in post, this following treatise of mine to resolve the doubting both that such assaults of Satan are most certainly practised, and that the instrument thereof merits most severely to be punished.

    In writing the book, King James was influenced by his personal involvement in the North Berwick witch trials (1590).”
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daemonologie

    Is apparently available from Gutenburg through the link.

    I haven’t trawled through this earlier work as wading through the dreadful tripe written in his “A Counterblaste to Tobacco” was quite enough for me, though his constant references to Godless Indians, against God and his own made up junk science, apparently based on the then current theory of “The Humours”, may have moved some Puritans of the time.

    • Rose says:

      Amazing what you find.

      1655: So popular was tobacco growing in the area the Gloucestershire hangman lamented:

      Harry Hangman’s Honour, or the Gloucestershire Hangman’s Request to the Smokers and Tobacconists of London, a quarto pamphlet in the King’s Collection, June 11, 1655

      “The very planting of tobacco hath proved the decay of my trade, for since it hath been planted in Gloucestershire, especially at Winchcombe, my trade hath proved nothing worth.” He adds: “Then ’twas a merry world with me, for indeed before tobacco was there planted, there being no kind of trade to employ men, and very small tillage, necessity compelled poor men to stand my friends by stealing of sheep and other cattel, breaking of hedges, robbing of orchards, and what not.”
      http://www.brh.org.uk/articles/tobacco.html

      • Rose says:

        For anyone interested

        Harry Hangman’s Honour: OR, Gloucester-shire Hangman’s Request TO THE Smoakers or Tobacconists in LONDON.

        Gentlemen,

        YOu that trade in that Weed called Herba Exotica, Herba Nicotiana, Petum, but commonly called TOBACCO, and by your Profession are called Smoakers, or Tobacconists; give me leave to address my self unto you, and make my Grievances known; forasmuch as I understand, that the very same thing which offends me, is also very offensive unto you: and I shall gladly assist you to the present Power, for a redress of those our Grievances.

        But take it not ill at my hands, that I should offer to associate my self with you: for I shall prove my Place and Calling to be far before and beyond yours,

        1. For Antiquity; I shall be able to prove, that there was a Hangman in Gloucester-shire, before there was any Smoaker or Tobacconist in London: and I doubt not but I shall produce a Coat of Arms, not from William the Norman Conqueror, Dane or Sa∣xon; but from Julius Caesar, 1600 yeers since, who brought the Romanes first into this Nation: and with them came in this death which I inflict upon offenders.

        Etc

        http://quod.lib.umich.edu/e/eebo/A87172.0001.001/1:1?rgn=div1;view=fulltext

  12. harleyrider1978 says:

  13. slugbop007 says:

    As if prisons are a healthy environment in the first place.

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