These days I spend much of my time constructing computer simulation models of ice ages. It’s not possible to do the same with tobacco smoke in lungs. And that’s because there’s a big difference between tobacco smoke alarmism and carbon dioxide alarmism. And the difference is that global warming alarmism has a rational and scientific foundation, and the war on tobacco does not.
There is no science of tobacco smoke that explains how it causes lung cancer. But there is a science of carbon dioxide that explains how it causes global warming. And this explanation is that carbon dioxide absorbs long wave radiation from the surface of the Earth, and the more of it that there is in the atmosphere, the more it acts to warm the Earth’s atmosphere.
But there is no corresponding explanation for exactly how tobacco smoke causes lung cancer. It explains nothing to be told that tobacco smoke contains “carcinogens”, because a carcinogen is simply another name for something that causes cancer. And these “carcinogens” are everywhere, and not just in tobacco smoke. So why doesn’t everyone get cancer? And why don’t all smokers die of lung cancer? If the true causes of cancer were known, there’d be a cure for cancer. And since there are no cures, its causes must remain unknown.
Not all sciences advance with equal speed. And the science of Physics is far more advanced than the science of Medicine. And in part this must be because the animate living things that are studied in medicine are much more complex than the inanimate objects that are studied in physics, and therefore much harder to understand. So we understand a lot about carbon dioxide, and little about cancer.
And wherever there is little understanding there is instead magical thinking. It’s not understood how tobacco smoke (or anything else) causes cancer, but it is believed that in some magic way it does so. Tobacco smoke has the magical property of causing cancer. In fact, it even has the magical property of causing all diseases. And it also possesses these properties even in homeopathic concentrations. In fact tobacco smoke has many magical properties. It can magically go through walls. It can magically climb multiple floors of buildings. It can magically linger for centuries on surfaces. And so on.
And where magical thinking reigns, it is not possible to mount rational, scientific arguments for and against any proposition. Or one kind of magical thinking can only be countered some other kind of magical thinking.
For example, if tobacco smoke has the magical property of being able to go anywhere and do anything, then there can never be any safe space anywhere in the world, and so banning smoking is futile.
And if the magical properties of tobacco smoke are only enhanced by dilution, then it follows that the most dangerous air to breathe is Fresh Air, in which there will always be some minuscule trace of tobacco smoke. And conversely, the safest air to breathe must be that which is found in the smokiest of smoky bars. And so the healthiest places in the world will be those in which smoky bars abound. And smoking bans must be extremely deleterious to health. For “smoke-free” air is a fiction. For all air, even the freshest of fresh air, contains carbon dioxide, and carbon dioxide is one of the invisible constituents of tobacco smoke.
And what do we know about carbon dioxide? We know that it absorbs long wave radiation emitted from warm surfaces. And that suggests an explanation for lung cancer that mirrors and reproduces the explanation of global warming: in the warm interior of their lungs, from the surface of which long wave radiation is continually being emitted, the carbon dioxide (which is present in higher concentrations in the lungs of smokers) is being heated, and causes internal lung heating – pulmonary warming -, and it is this warming, which is often concentrated in localised “hot spots” in the lungs, which causes cancerous tumours to appear. And it causes these fast-reproducing cancers because heat stimulates activity, stimulates growth, and stimulates reproduction. After all, if increasing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere encourages plant growth in the atmosphere, increasing carbon dioxide in lungs must encourage tumour growth inside them as well.
And here we have married climate science with medicine. It’s a magical wedding that (at last) provides a rational, scientific explanation for lung cancer. The same catastrophic global warming that is happening in the atmosphere is happening in the lungs of smokers, as catastrophic pulmonary warming. And it is also anthropogenic pulmonary warming, because smokers cause the warming by smoking carbon dioxide-emitting cigarettes. Carbon dioxide is causing not only anthropogenic global warming (AGW) but also a global epidemic of lung cancer through anthropogenic pulmonary warming (APW). And because atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide are rising, not only smokers are seeing increased lung cancer prevalence (because it isn’t actually smoking that causes lung cancer, but instead carbon dioxide).
And if global warming is the cause of increased climatic disturbances like hurricanes and tornadoes, then anthropogenic pulmonary warming is also the cause of other disturbances, like heart disease, and any other disease you may care to imagine.
It all hangs together beautifully.
…Unless of course carbon dioxide is not causing global warming. In which case it’s not causing pulmonary warming either. And the whole beautiful theory goes up in smoke, or turns into a pumpkin.