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Anti-prohibition news from over the world

Collected live from our allies' blogs.
Note: All opinions expressed below are those of the authors only, not necessarily TICAP's.


Published on 2017-05-24 10:47:05.
Website: Frank Davis

I bought a couple of expensive wine glasses last week. I wanted them for the transgressive videos I was planning to make with Emily, which were to feature us both (and other people as well) ostentatiously smoking and drinking and … Continue reading →

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The eating ban

Published on 2017-05-23 09:29:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

The European Congress on Obesity took place last week in Portugal and various British journalists were sent over to find a story. The organisers were happy to oblige. First they announced that you can't be fat and fit (based on a verbal discussion of an abstract of an unpublished, unreviewed study) and then they upped the ante with a demand for 'junk food' to be banned on public transport.

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Another Day, Another Bomb

Published on 2017-05-23 08:52:14.
Website: Frank Davis

Another day, another bomb. In the Guardian report on it today, there was no mention of either the words “islam” or “muslim”. Although the Telegraph did include a mention: ​Islamic State supporters celebrate Manchester attack online It has all the … Continue reading →

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"Nicotine Has Caused Millions Of Deaths"

Published on 2017-05-22 19:57:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote

It is now less than a month until the fourth Global Forum on Nicotine (GFN) which is being held in Warsaw from 15th to 17th June, tagline "GFN is the only international conference to focus on the role of safer nicotine products that help people switch from smoking.".

Every GFN so far has seen representatives of ASH attend, both as panellists and delegates, and on at least one occasion included their director of policy, Hazel Cheeseman. I know this because I once found myself sitting behind her in a plenary session.

Sadly, it doesn't seem that GFN taught her very much at all if her appearance on Radio Kent to talk about e-cigs last week is a pointer, or perhaps she just wasn't listening.

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Half a Bottle of Pinot Grigio

Published on 2017-05-22 11:58:04.
Website: Frank Davis

I spent a long time talking to Emily on Skype yesterday, and I recorded quite a lot of our conversation. This morning I woke up thinking about our brief discussion of veganism (and slavery). So I looked through the video … Continue reading →

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Smokers Will Unite The World

Published on 2017-05-21 10:57:26.
Website: Frank Davis

These days it’s the common, shared experience of smokers to have been “exiled to the outdoors.” And it’s the same experience whether it happened to them in Moscow or Manchester or Melbourne. They’re all outcasts. They’ve all been tarred with … Continue reading →

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Weekend review

Published on 2017-05-21 08:17:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

I've been sent a few products to review recently and have been discussing them on Twitter. For those of you who don't follow me on Twitter, here are my reviews (click on the tweet and follow the thread).

First up was a 50w Sub Ohm vape from Kik E-cigs. It's an attractive little gadget but I'm not that keen on Sub Ohming when other people do it and I found I wasn't that keen on it when I did it either. However, if this is the kind of thing you like, you'll like this kind of thing. Looks nice doesn't it?

I've been sent this 50w Sub Ohm vape by @kikecigs to review. I will now proceed to do so. pic.twitter.com/NC28sy0o42— Christopher Snowdon (@cjsnowdon) March 11, 2017

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Tobacco Products Directive now in force

Published on 2017-05-20 12:16:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

The Tobacco Products Directive came into full effect today. I've written about its petty and counterproductive regulations for Spectator Health...

From tomorrow, it will be a criminal offence to sell vape juice in any container larger than 10ml because, er, something or other. If I want to replace my e-cigarette, I won’t be able to do so in any EU country as its tank can hold more than 2ml of fluid and that presumably poses a threat to somebody somewhere. If I want to buy relatively strong vape juice (over two per cent nicotine), I’ll have to order it from outside the EU because, erm, think of the children or something.

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Call Judge Jeanine Pirro

Published on 2017-05-20 10:45:40.
Website: Frank Davis

I’ve been getting a bit gloomy about the presidency of Donald Trump recently. The media coverage of him seems to be nothing but Russia, Russia, Russia, Impeach, Russia. And even people outside the MSM are saying that the presidency has … Continue reading →

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Tobacco Control Kills

Published on 2017-05-19 18:18:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote

If like me you have spent the past week or so hoovering up eliquid and vaping accessories at quite ridiculous knock-down prices, you'll know that today is the last day of one of the most successful real-world public health experiments in history.

Prior to the EU's disastrous Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) - overseen by a crook and driven through by vacuous MEPs - e-cigs operated as a consumer product in a bustling and innovative free market. It was not - despite what tobacco control liars say - unregulated considering manufacturers were abiding by 20 or so consumer product regulations. The results were stunning! Latest figures for the UK show that there are now 2.9 million vapers, of which over half of them have quit smoking entirely.

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Tin packs and ten packs

Published on 2017-05-19 10:35:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

From tomorrow you could face two years in prison if you sell a branded pack of cigarettes. What a great country we live in.

It will also be illegal to sell cigarettes in packs of ten, which leads me to this from The Guardian...

The maker of Marlboro cigarettes has been accused of trying to sidestep new UK laws on plain packaging by rolling out durable tins that look just like ordinary cigarette packets.
Either you break the law or you don't. 'Sidestep' here means 'comply with' - and good for them. I haven't seen any of these tins and, according to the Guardian, Philip Morris have 'distributed a relatively small number' of them, but I wish all the cigarette companies had done the same thing to make a mockery of this absurd law. If you can't geld hold of one, there are plenty of stylish cigarette cases to buy at the click of a button.

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Jamie Oliver Is In Australia, Close The Border

Published on 2017-05-18 20:56:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote

Slack-jowelled uber-hypocrite Jamie Oliver has been in Australia this week but, before you get excited, sadly Essex's most esteemed serial arsehole is likely to be coming back.

It's curious that in the past we used to deport hungry poor people to the other side of the world for stealing a loaf of bread, while now mega-rich elitists like Oliver - who advocate policies which steal pocket money from kids - travel there in luxury and enjoy fawning articles promoting his snobbery masquerading as concern for health.

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Burying the benefits of drinking - a history lesson

Published on 2017-05-18 14:04:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

I've come across a very interesting article from 1997 by Carl C. Seltzer, a scientist who wrote a chapter of the 1964 Surgeon General's report on smoking and later became involved with the famous Framingham Study...

The Framingham Study has been abundantly reported in the literature and will be outlined here only briefly. It was established in 1948-1949 by the National Heart Institute to follow 2282 men and 2845 women, 22-62 years of age, who were initially free of coronary heart disease. Each subject at baseline received an extensive standardized cardiovascular examination, which included information on habits, physical characteristics, and blood chemistries. Biennially thereafter, and now extending for more than 40 years, the subjects have been thoroughly re-examined for the same initial characteristics, with development of CHD [coronary heart disease] noted as the ultimate endpoint.

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Joined-Up Lobbying

Published on 2017-05-17 20:21:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote

ITV's Chris Choi is today asking for thoughts on the new regulations being brought in at the end of this week as a result of the EU's appalling Tobacco Products Directive which was presided over by a crook.

tobacco rules on selling cigs in packs of 20 and limiting vaping strengths start on Saturday. Looking for your views chris.choi@itn.co.uk— Chris Choi (@Chrisitv) May 17, 2017
One of the new rules is, of course, that packs of 10 cigarettes will be banned. So here is a view which he might like to hear.

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Slippery slope: gambling edition

Published on 2017-05-17 10:47:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

Way back in 1985, half-witted sociologist Simon Chapman scoffed at the idea that a ban on tobacco advertising would open the door to the prohibition of the advertising of any product that displeased puritans. In a document published by the British Medical Association, he wrote:

The 'thin end of the wedge...'?

A further deception is the industry's appeal: "Where will they stop?" The industry argues that if advertising is stopped because tobacco is dangerous, then advertising for cars, motor cycles, alcohol, sugar, aircraft travel and any other potentially dangerous product could also be banned.

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A Good Aussie Speaks Up, Again

Published on 2017-05-16 20:43:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote

As another entry in an occasional series, let's look in on Sydney Australia for more outstanding parliamentarian contributions from this blog's chum, Peter Phelps.

If you've not heard of him before, my introduction from October last year might help.
Those with a good memory might remember Peter Phelps, an Australian politician and Member of the New South Wales Legislative Council. Phelps is notable for being incredibly principled in defending liberal values in such an illiberal environment as NSW, and in a chamber which is situated in nanny state central Sydney. As such, I was thrilled to unexpectedly meet him in July during a coffee break at a Royal Society of Medicine event on over-regulation of pleasure. Last year - when he was government whip no less - I wrote about how he casually entered a chamber packed full of variously ignorant prejudiced prohibitionists armed only with insults, smears, innuendo, wild assumptions, and downright lies, and placed in front of them simple incontrovertible facts about e-cigarettes. And arguably won hands down.That article was about how he was speaking at New South Wales's "Inquiry into childhood overweight and obesity", and bedevilling a dried-up crone who believes kids should be deprived McDonald's, Coca-Cola and chocolate because, erm, because she knows better than a kid's parents how to bring up their own kids.

Well our Peter has been doing the same again last week, this time revealing some inconvenient truths to politicians in his state who feel it's their job to dictate what people eat and drink. Which, of course, it is not.
The real problem is that, in fact, there is no obesity epidemic. The obesity epidemic is a myth, especially an obesity epidemic amongst children. For example, the most current report of the Australian Bureau of Statistics says: Around one in four children

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Tory paternalism and gambling

Published on 2017-05-16 11:12:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

Philip Blond at ResPublica is the latest to join the moral crusade (gravy train?) against fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs). These are the machines in betting shops that have become controversial thanks to the Campaign for Fairer Gambling, a pressure group set up and lavishly funded by the casino tycoon Derek Webb.

I first wrote about FOBTs back in 2013 after hearing several claims that were patently untrue. Whatever anti-gambling campaigners might say, there has been no proliferation of betting shops in the last decade, no rise in problem gambling, and there is no evidence that FOBTs are more 'addictive' than other forms of gambling.

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It's The Vaping, Stupid!

Published on 2017-05-15 17:47:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote

You know, if truth was personified, strolled up to ASH HQ and introduced itself to the rancid tax-spongers with its business card, they would still have trouble recognising it. They simply don't do honesty.

Today, the odious, illiberal, disingenuous coven of troughing sock puppets have yet again been twisting language to claim credit for declining smoking rates which should, properly, be attributed to e-cigs.
Getting rid of glitzy, heavily branded tobacco packs is the latest in a long line of achievements by the UK which is a global leader in tobacco control. We now have among the fastest declining smoking rates in the world thanks to decades of sound policy, but smoking rates among the poorest and most disadvantaged remain high.E-cigs are not a 'policy', they are a product which has been fuelling those "fastest declining smoking rates" of which ASH speak. Yet their article, as has become customary, makes no mention of e-cigs or vaping whatsoever.

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Graphic warnings for hamburgers

Published on 2017-05-14 18:13:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

Nick Ferrari on The Pledge (a British TV show) taking a lone stand against a bunch of celebrities who want graphic warnings, plain packaging and, in the case of James Caan, prohibition for hamburgers.
Does junk food packaging need to incorporate serious health messages like cigarette packaging does? #ThePledge pic.twitter.com/bUjsxUkEeb— The Pledge (@ThePledge) May 14, 2017
Further proof that smokers have been used a

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Labour wonders why pubs have been closing

Published on 2017-05-12 14:53:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

The Labour Party's draft manifesto was leaked yesterday. It contains this gem...

We will set up a National Review of Local Pubs to examine the causes for the large-scale demise of pubs
Gee, I wonder what could be behind the 'large-scale demise of pubs'?  Perhaps we could start by looking at the Labour Party's 2005 manifesto which said:

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Stop Pretending, 'Public Health' - You're Simply Common Prohibitionists

Published on 2017-05-11 17:15:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote

A few years ago comedian Steve Hughes jokingly spoke of the approach 'public health' has towards smoking.
"Can we still buy cigarettes?"
"Of course!"
"Where can we smoke them?"
"Nowhere"Now, it's a regular refrain from the vile, selfish wankers who form tobacco control's fan base - basically curtain-twitching prodnoses who believe the world revolves around them, their shit doesn't stink, and that they are entitled to meddle in other people's lives - that smokers should smoke in their own homes and nowhere else.

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Nanny State Index 2017

Published on 2017-05-10 00:00:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

Today sees the publication of the 2017 edition of the Nanny State Index, a league table of the best and worst places in the European Union to eat, drink, smoke and vape. Each country is given a score according to the scale of its paternalistic regulation of alcohol, e-cigarettes, food and tobacco. There is no change at the top, with Finland enjoying a seemingly impregnable lead as the EU’s number one nanny state thanks to draconian restrictions on all four product categories, but the UK and Ireland are not far behind, saved only by their more liberal approach to vaping. The best performing countries are those which have relatively low taxes and a tolerant attitude to smokers, drinkers and vapers. The Czech Republic and Germany stand out at the foot of the table.

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Es ist schon ein Kreuz…

Published on 2017-05-09 19:52:44.
Website: Netzwerk Rauchen e.V.

Landtagswahl in Nordrhein-Westfalen 2017

Im größten deutschen Bundesland NRW wird am Sonntag das Landesparlament gewählt. Nach der Wahl 2012 hat die rot-grüne Koalition das Rauchverbotsgesetz verschärft, ein totales Rauchverbot für die Gastronomie, für Landesverfassungsorgane und für Spielplätze wurde zum 1. Mai 2013 eingeführt. Auf Schulhöfen darf nicht einmal bei außerschulischen Veranstaltungen wie Dorffesten geraucht werden. Die erwarteten Schäden sind eingetreten: Kneipensterben und Umsatzeinbußen mit Verlust an sozialen Treffpunkten und Arbeitsplätzen, Bußgelder und fortschreitende Diskriminierung der Raucher. Symbolfigur: Gesundheitsministerin Barbara Steffens von den Grünen Volkserziehern, eine glühende Sanitaristin. Mit reichlich Unterstützung der roten Helfershelfer um Ministerpräsidentin Kraft, die Abweichler in den eigenen Reihen auf Linie gezwungen haben.

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Government Testing of Another Vape Shop Reveals No Cause for Concern about Secondhand Vaping

Published on 2017-05-09 19:25:00.
Website: The Rest of the Story: Tobacco News Analysis and Commentary

Government officials have now completed an investigation of a second vape shop, finding that levels of chemicals of concern are minimal in the ambient air of the vape shop, thus not posing any significant risk to customers.

The evaluation was performed by the National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety (NIOSH). Breathing zone air samples were tested for formaldehyde, acetaldehyde, and three chemicaals associated with "popcorn lung."

Results showed that all of these chemicals were well within the NIOSH recommended exposure levels. The formaldehyde and acetaldehyde concentrations were similar to those observed in typical U.S. homes. The "popcorn" lung associated-chemicals were not detected in most samples and detected only at very low levels in the remaining samples.

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Worthless research into thirdhand smoke

Published on 2017-05-08 12:28:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

There's a wacky psychologist over in San Diego called Georg Matt who has been pushing the concept of 'thirdhand smoke' for a decade. Thirdhand smoke is the ludicrous name for any measurable deposits of nicotine found in hair, clothing, carpets and furniture. It is not smoke and it is not in the least bit dangerous, but in chemophobic California there mere presence of CHEMICALS is enough to start a panic.

Readers with long memories will fondly recall Matt getting headlines around the world with a study of zero academic merit in 2009 when he conducted a phone interview asking parents if they were concerned about thirdhand smoke. Since Matt had just invented the concept, most of them were obviously not concerned about it, but the gullible media (eg. the BBC) still reported the 'news' as he hoped... 

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The Staggering Hypocrisy Of ASH

Published on 2017-05-08 10:54:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote

Sometimes the hypocrisy displayed by ASH reaches spectacular levels, and today is one such occasion.

Via the BBC (emphases mine):
Some 1.5 million vapers are ex-smokers, compared with 1.3 million who still use tobacco, a survey of 12,000 adults for Action on Smoking and Health found. But Ash said the message that vaping was much less harmful than smoking had not yet got through to all smokers. Deborah Arnott, the campaigning health charity's chief executive, said the figures on vapers who had quit smoking were "excellent news" but that the rate of people switching to electronic versions had peaked. "The rapid growth in e-cigarette use has come to an end," she said. This is because more than a third of smokers have still never tried e-cigarettes, as a result of concerns about the safety and addictiveness of e-cigarettes. But research suggests that 26% of people think e-cigarettes are more - or equally as - harmful as smoking tobacco while only 13% believe they are a lot less harmful. "It's very important smokers realise that vaping is much, much less harmful than smoking," she added.So what, exactly, has ASH been doing to get this "important" message across to smokers then?

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When alcohol prophecies fail

Published on 2017-05-05 10:13:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

In 2014, Ian Gilmore, chair of the Alcohol Health Alliance said that his aim was to get alcohol consumption back to where it was '30 or 40 years ago'.

'Of course, we do not want everybody to stop drinking. That is not the endgame. However, nonetheless, if we could just get the whole consumption curve shifted down by 10 or 20% - if we could get back to where we were in the UK, say, 30 to 40 years ago in our per capita consumption and we would see a huge benefit in health.'

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Smokeless Tobacco Company Admits that Its Products Cause Oral Cancer

Published on 2017-05-04 12:06:00.
Website: The Rest of the Story: Tobacco News Analysis and Commentary

In its defense of a lawsuit brought by the family of former San Diego Padres great Tony Gwynn who died of oral cancer in 2014, the U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company has admitted that its products cause oral cancer and that the public was widely aware of it, to the extent that it was "obvious."

As reported by USA Today: "The U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company has filed a response to the family of deceased baseball legend Tony Gwynn, saying that Gwynn was warned about the alleged risks of using smokeless tobacco and that such risks are “commonly known” but Gwynn accepted them anyway. ... “Plaintiffs (the Gwynns) are barred from recovering any damages because the dangers claimed by Plaintiffs, if any, are and were open and obvious,” says the company’s response, filed by attorneys at the firm Shook, Hardy & Bacon."

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What is Public Health England doing to our food?

Published on 2017-05-04 10:47:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

Lucozade's Twitter feed has been a lot of fun recently, as the company responds to outraged customers who have tasted the new, low-sugar version of the drink. Day after day, Lucozade is inundated by complaints and day after day the company adopts the PR strategy of Comical Ali, insisting that their flagship drink has changed due to consumer demand and has a 'great taste'.

@louise_wileman Hi Louise, we’ve been working on how to reduce sugar and keep the great taste for years – and we’ve cracked it!— Lucozade Energy (@LucozadeEnergy) April 21, 2017@LucozadeEnergy why change this when recently you have  brought out 'zero' version for people who  want a 'healthier' choice? Taste is not the same at all— Louise Wileman (@louise_wileman) April 21, 2017@LucozadeEnergy @louise_wileman You have not cracked it, it's undrinkable now— Fono (@lukefono) April 23, 2017@LucozadeEnergy @louise_wileman Nope. You have failed. Only thing cracked is my love for Lucozade, quickly do a coke and go back to the classic— DJHOLLAND (@djjamesholland) April 21, 2017@LucozadeEnergy @louise_wileman You've cocked it up more like— Jamie Woodhall (@Woodhall_Jamie) April 24, 2017@LucozadeEnergy @louise_wileman Cracked it? You shattered it and stepped in the remains. Sort this out, because this is godawful.— Sean Harmon (@SeanHarmon_) April 21, 2017

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Awkward Facts Emerge From France

Published on 2017-05-03 21:00:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote

Oh dear. It seems that, just like in Australia, plain packaging is having the same polar opposite effect that tobacco control industry troughers were hoping for in France.

Via The Local:
Smoking on the rise in France despite rollout of plain packagingSince France introduced a ban on branded cigarettes in January 2017, more packets of cigarettes have been sold compared to last year when branding was allowed, according to the country's Customs Office (L'administration des Douanes). In March alone the French bought four million packets of cigarettes, over four percent more than during the same period last year.It's a bit of a dog's breakfast, isn't it?

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The curse of plain packaging

Published on 2017-05-03 11:03:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

One of the indisputable facts about plain packaging that should be universally known but is barely acknowledged, is that cigarettes sales rose every quarter after it was introduced in Australia until large tax rises started nudging them down again.

Image from City AM

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The Nanny State Index Conference is coming

Published on 2017-05-02 14:51:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist

The new Nanny State Index is released on May 10th and we're going hold a conference to discuss it. It will not be a 'public health' conference and, as a result, it should be interesting, stimulating and honest.

It's going to be in Brussels and you can come. See here for details.

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