TICAP Logo

 
The Brussels Declaration website
Latest News

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.

It's never really about the children

Published on 2017-03-30 15:39:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist


Public Health England are pushing on with their mad idea to take arbitrary percentages of sugar, fat, salt and calories out of Britain's food supply. It is a idea worthy of Caligula. The last few weeks have seen various food companies announce that their products will be getting smaller. Some have attempted to blame this on Brexit, but inflation is no reason to reduce the size (the normal thing to do would be to increase the price). It's all being done under pressure from this unelected quango with the minimum of public debate.

Health by stealth, they call it, and rightly so. If people were well informed about what was going on, there would be bedlam. Although every reformulation and shrinkage unleashes hell from consumers (see the recent Irn-Bru announcement, for example), you'd never guess there was any opposition to PHE's totalitarian scheme if you read today's coverage.

Full article

Leaving Port

Published on 2017-03-30 10:29:00.
Website: Frank Davis


A few days ago I was wondering whether Theresa May was not in fact going to invoke Article 50, and new regulations coming into effect tomorrow would preclude the possibility Britain (or any other member state) ever leaving the EU. … Continue reading →

Full article

Taps Drip, Clocks Tick, Tobacco Controllers Lie

Published on 2017-03-29 20:33:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote


Back when the tax parasites in tobacco control set their sights on plain packaging for tobacco, they were very clear about why the policy was required.

If you live in the south west, you may remember this advertising hoarding at the time, paid for by government to lobby government in early 2012.

There are other examples here and hereIn case you can't quite make it out, it says:

Full article

Why Smoking Is Wrong

Published on 2017-03-29 11:25:42.
Website: Frank Davis


I always have the suspicion – and it’s really only a suspicion – that real objection of the antismokers in Tobacco Control to smoking is an ethical one. But because we have no shared system of ethics, or any accompanying … Continue reading →

Full article

The March Of Progress

Published on 2017-03-28 18:25:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote


Thanks to @taffyjock81 on Twitter for this gem.

Back in 2015, ITV news trumpeted the launch of the first ever "quit shop" in Wales. Its unique selling point was quite interesting (emphasis mine).
Wales's first quit smoking shop has opened its doors in Cwmbran. It aims to help people quit smoking altogether, rather than simply switching to e-cigarettes.With the direction of travel in the UK driving headlong towards non-medical avenues such as vaping, Stop Smoking Wales had decided to buck the trend and ignore what is quite obviously the future. All that was needed, they figured, was a shop instead of a clinic. Brilliant! Then the state-sponsored gum would fly off the shelves! Very smart it looked too!

Full article

The Cancer Metastasizes

Published on 2017-03-28 10:29:16.
Website: Frank Davis


Tobacco companies are warning other companies what’s coming down the track:   MT popped along to the unimaginatively-titled International Food & Drink Event this week, a giant trade fair at London’s ExCel, where supermarket buyers trawl for the next big … Continue reading →

Full article

IN MY VIEW: Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids' Lying Has Got to Stop

Published on 2017-03-28 00:30:00.
Website: The Rest of the Story: Tobacco News Analysis and Commentary


In an action alert emailed today to its constituents, the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids insinuated that the tobacco companies are producing gummy worm electronic cigarettes. The title of the email is "Gummy worms," and the headline of the action alert states that "tobacco companies" are "luring kids with candy-flavored e-cigarettes and cigars."

As I've noted previously, this is simply not true. None of the tobacco companies is producing gummy worm-flavored electronic cigarettes.

While the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids has every right to fight for a ban on e-cigarette flavorings (a policy with which I vigorously disagree), it has no business lying to and deceiving its constituents in order to promote such a ban.

Full article

The decent and tolerant people of Wales

Published on 2017-03-27 15:04:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist


Given the state-funded hate campaign against smokers that we have seen over the last ten years it is remarkable that the majority of people remain sensible and tolerant when it comes to smoking bans. Every survey that gives people the option of designated, ventilated smoking rooms finds a majority of smokers and nonsmokers in favour. This has been shown yet again in Wales - see Taking Liberties and Dick Puddlecote for details.

Full article

Regulating The Regulators

Published on 2017-03-27 12:20:45.
Website: Frank Davis


H/T Smokingscot, who yesterday drew attention to an interesting piece in Anti-THR Lies by astrophysicist Roberto A Sussman, written in response to a recent editorial – Blog Fog – in Tobacco Control magazine, in which the editors stated that they would … Continue reading →

Full article

Bans Destroy Businesses, Why Lie About It?

Published on 2017-03-26 21:59:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote


Following on from yesterday's article about attitudes to the smoking ban in Wales, one of the biggest lies (of thousands) that the tobacco control industry has ever told is that hospitality businesses are not affected by smoking bans. In fact, it is laughably claimed that they flourish.

The advance notice of the tens of thousands of pub closures we have now seen due to the smoking ban in the UK were blithely dismissed by Linda Bauld back in 2011 (her 'review' is neatly filleted here). Apparently there was no evidence whatsoever that it had happened, or would happen ... even though there was tons of it at the time which was ignored.

Full article

The Debate Will Never Be Over

Published on 2017-03-26 20:13:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote


Two sound bites you will regularly hear from those in the tobacco control industry is that, when it comes to smoking bans and secondhand smoke, "the science is settled" and "the debate is over". This is classic political rhetoric designed to sway the public into backing the winner, a natural human psychological tendency.

It was, as Debs Arnott of ASH boasted at the time, "a confidence trick".

Full article

Wait Until The War Is Over

Published on 2017-03-26 12:25:12.
Website: Frank Davis


I think that, in years to come, there will be an entire literature devoted to the Global War on Smoking, and the smoking bans that came with it, much in the same way that there is an entire literature surrounding … Continue reading →

Full article

The Latest EU Health Commissioner Hasn't A Clue Either

Published on 2017-03-25 21:57:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote



A few years ago I wrote about why appointing EU commissioners from low populated states ensured their incompetence.
When England play football against San Marino, what generally happens? Well, they get thrashed of course. In fact, they get thrashed by just about everyone because they're pants. Even Scotland can put a couple past them! It's not their fault. It's just that their population is so small that there is very little talent to choose from. Pitting 31,000 San Marinoans - or whatever they're called - against 53 million Englanders is only going to end in one result. It's why, in football, San Marino are not given equal privileges with more successful (normally more populated) nations. They are not thrown into competition draws on an equal footing with Germany and Spain because that would be monumentally stupid; would make football a laughing stock; and would result in the game being devalued as a result. The situation with the EU is entirely different, though. You see, there are 27 member nations and they are all treated equally, which means that the least populous member - Malta with fewer than 500,000 citizens - is afforded the same importance as Germany (with 81 million) when it comes to allocating EU Commissioners. Worse than that, though, Malta isn't handed something inconsequential which can't harm one billion EU citizens - like pronouncing on treatment of stray ducks, for example - no, they are currently placed in charge of the continent's health!The EU, however, has corrected this fundamental problem and has since installed a Lithuanian, Vytenis Andriukaitis, to carry the portfolio for half a billion EU citizens. It's a step in the right direction considering the country's population is close to 3 million!

Full article

Tobacco Control fail

Published on 2017-03-24 12:01:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist


The 2016 Tobacco Control Scale (TCS) was published yesterday. The TCS pats governments on the back for capitulating to the whims of the anti-smoking lobby, regardless of whether the policies actually work.

Charting each country's score against smoking rates show that obedience to 'public health' diktats is no guarantee of lower smoking rates, even if forcing people to stop smoking were ethically justifiable - which it isn't. As with previous TCSs, there is no statistically significant association between tobacco control scores and smoking prevalence (the r-squared is 0.08, if you're statistically minded).

Full article

When Is 24% Not 24%?

Published on 2017-03-23 21:06:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote


There's been a lot of oil-spreading today from 'public health' extremists trying to calm waters after a landmark study showed that moderate drinking is better for your health than not drinking at all.
PINT A DAY KEEPS DOC AWAY  Reduce your chances of having a heart attack by a THIRD with a daily pint or glass of wine People who drink in moderation can also slash their risk of dying young by a quarter - even compared to teetotallersOK, that's The Sun, but it was also widely covered by other news sources. The important bit in this is what The Sun calls "a quarter". The figure, if you look at the source in the BMJ, is an increase in risk of 24% or - in epidemiological terms - a relative risk (RR) of 1.24.

Full article

Moderate drinking: doubt, denial and whataboutery

Published on 2017-03-23 13:17:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist


Yet another study has shown that teetotallers have a significantly increased risk of cardiovascular death and death. The study was published in the British Medical Journal and involved nearly two million people, including 280,000 people who had never drunk alcohol. It was conducted by researchers at Cambridge University and University College, and the non-drinker category was split into never drinkers and former drinkers to prevent the usual squeals of 'sick quitter!' from the deniers in 'public health'. The table of results are at the bottom of this post.

Full article

Anti-Vaping Advocates Support Indoor Vaping Bans Because We Don't Know if Secondhand Vaping is Harmful

Published on 2017-03-21 22:06:00.
Website: The Rest of the Story: Tobacco News Analysis and Commentary


In an interesting twist from the usual reasoning in public health, anti-vaping advocates are promoting the enactment of policies that ban vaping in public places not because secondhand vaping has been shown to have serious health hazards, but because it hasn't been proven to be benign.

In an opinion piece published in Tobacco Control, Dr. Simon Chapman and colleagues support a ban on vaping in public places because we don't know yet whether secondhand vaping is harmful. The authors write that: 
"those advocating for vaping to be allowed in smoke-free public places centre their case on gossamer-thin evidence that vaping emissions are all but benign and therefore pose negligible risks to others akin to inhaling steam from showers, kettles or saunas. This is likely to be baseless. Unlike vapourised water, electronic nicotine delivery system (ENDS) emissions comprise nicotine, carbonyls, metals, organic volatile compounds, besides particulate matter, and putative carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon. ... Importantly, the short time span since the advent of ENDS and the latency of candidate respiratory and cardiovascular diseases that may be caused or exacerbated by ambient exposure to ENDS emissions preclude definitive risk inference. Taking the current immature evidence as a proof of safety and using it to advocate for policy that allows ENDS indoors could prove reckless."

Full article

May As Well Smoke Tons, Says Fresh North East

Published on 2017-03-21 21:46:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote


The echo chamber of tobacco control can be a quite remarkable thing at times.

Yesterday, entirely state-funded anti-smoking sock muppets Fresh North East published possibly the worst advice I've ever seen from an organisation of their kind.
Warning to light and social smokersSMOKERS who've cut down are being warned they are still facing significant risks of cancer and heart disease unless they quit or switch as a campaign launches today. But with many smokers cutting down to ten or fewer cigarettes a day, or to hand rolling tobacco, Fresh is warning people not to ignore the substantial risks from smoking only a few cigarettes a day.

Full article

New York State Senator Uses "Alternative Facts" to Promote Ban on Flavored E-Cigarettes

Published on 2017-03-21 11:57:00.
Website: The Rest of the Story: Tobacco News Analysis and Commentary


A New York State senator - Brad Hoylman (D-Manhattan) - has introduced legislation to ban the sale of flavored electronic cigarettes in New York. To promote this ban, he argued that cigarette companies are seducing kids to vape by selling fruit punch, gummy bear, and cotton candy e-cigarettes: "Kids are attracted to the numerous flavors that the cigarette companies are selling, such as fruit punch, gummy bear, cotton candy."

The Rest of the Story

Senator Hoylman's position is based on "alternative facts," or what prior to 2016 would have more simply been called a "lie."

Full article

Fake dental news?

Published on 2017-03-21 09:02:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist


The dubious claims about tooth decay are coming thick and fast now. Only two months after the last dodgy press release about children having their teeth extracted in hospital (from the LGA), comes this from the Faculty of Dental Surgeons:

Hospitals in England are seeing thousands of very young children each year needing baby teeth removed. 
The Faculty of Dental Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons, which compiled the data, blames tooth decay linked to sugary diets.

Full article

Oh Bournemouth Freedom, Shine On Me

Published on 2017-03-20 21:19:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote


OK, Bournemouth doesn't quite scan for the title like Philadelphia does, but Twitter followers may have noticed that I've just returned from the seaside town after a weekend spent at the fourth annual Freedom Festival hosted by The Freedom Association.

If you don't know of the Freedom Association, it is a non-partisan group funded by public donations established in the 1970s which boasts around 30 MPs amongst its paid-up membership. This was evident from the weekend where the speakers list was peppered with MPs, MEPs, prominent political commentators and even a cabinet minister in the form of Priti Patel. The panels focussed on current issues but always - as it says on the tin - with an eye on freedom.

Full article

Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids Admits that Its Secret Campaign Promoted Youth Cigarette Addiction

Published on 2017-03-19 12:59:00.
Website: The Rest of the Story: Tobacco News Analysis and Commentary


Through a shocking revelation, we learned last week that a major, national anti-tobacco organization ran a secret campaign to promote youth cigarette addiction.

The organization: The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids

The secret campaign: Federal lobbying against a ban on menthol-flavored cigarettes.

The admission: This campaign promoted youth cigarette addiction by protecting the cigarette companies' ability to market the most popular flavored cigarette (menthol) to youth and the campaign worked: menthol cigarette use among youth increased significantly thanks to the lobbying efforts of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.

Full article

Op-Ed at Bloomberg View on FDA Regulation of Electronic Cigarettes

Published on 2017-03-17 02:25:00.
Website: The Rest of the Story: Tobacco News Analysis and Commentary


My op-ed on the FDA and regulation of electronic cigarettes appears today here.

Full article

Smoking rate falls to 9% in Sweden thanks to snus

Published on 2017-03-16 11:25:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist


In Sweden, the smoking rate has fallen to a mere nine per cent, as the New Scientist reports, and snus is being given due credit. It's a good job the EU banned it everywhere else, eh?

I've written about this for Spectator Health. Do have a quick read.

Full article

New York State Department of Health Urges Physicians to Discourage Patients from Quitting Unless They Use Big Pharma Products and Tells Vapers They Mi

Published on 2017-03-15 23:45:00.
Website: The Rest of the Story: Tobacco News Analysis and Commentary


The New York State Department of Health has sent out a letter to medical professionals in the state, urging them to discourage patients from quitting smoking using e-cigarettes, even if they indicate unwillingness or lack of interest in nicotine replacement therapy or other smoking cessation drugs.

In the February 2017 letter, the state health commissioner writes:

"I encourage all health care providers to talk to their patients -- young and old alike -- about the dangers of e-cigarettes and to discourage their use. For patients who are already using traditional cigarettes or e-cigarettes, there are currently seven FDA-approved medications for smoking cessation, including five nicotine replacement therapies."

Full article

Sugar statistics for everyone to ignore

Published on 2017-03-15 16:42:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist


Mike Gibney has dug out some sugar statistics from around the world to show, for the umpteenth time, that sugar consumption has not been rising during the obesity 'epidemic'.

The Food & Agricultural Organisation (FAO) of the UN measures the “disappearance” of sugar in countries worldwide which takes overall national production data, adds imports and subtracts both exports and non-human use. If used wisely and for time trends only, such data can be very valuable.

In Australia, such data shows a decline in per capita intake of sugar from 152 grams per day in 1980 to 127 in 2011. Using similar techniques, data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows a 17% reduction in apparent sugar consumption from 1961 to 2011 (139 to 115g/hd/d). Data from Australian National Nutrition Surveys, which are based on surveys of actual sugar intake at individual level, also show a decline in total sugar intake, from 115 grams per day in 1995 to 105 in 2012. Given that among the devils of sugar sources, those from beverages are considered as the Satanic level, it is interesting to note that such Satanic influences have also fallen over time.

Full article

PHE "Delighted" At Exiling Vapers To The Outdoors

Published on 2017-03-14 17:50:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote


As Frank Davis will admirably never cease to remind you, when the smoking ban was applied in 2007, an ecstatic Debs Arnott of ASH let her mouth run away with her and boasted gleefully about how "smokers will be exiled to the outdoors".

It's no secret that I believe the ban to have been the most socially destructive and disgracefully illiberal piece of legislation I will ever see in my lifetime. The enforcing of dictatorial rules on private property was hideous enough, but the vile marginalisation of law-abiding citizens and the consequential extension of the idea that laws based solely on snobbery and prejudice are acceptable has been nauseating. These days, you just have to say you are not a fan of something, some wanker will petition the government to ban it and - thanks to the precedent of the smoking ban - politicians will discard all thoughts of personal liberty and seriously consider it. If you can convince people on the back of deliberately contrived junk science that a few wisps of smoke is on a par with letting off a hand grenade, you can install fascist rules on just about anything.

Full article

New Survey Shows that Most Physicians are Completely Misguided on E-Cigarette Recommendations; Anti-Tobacco Groups' Propaganda is Wreaking Havoc on th

Published on 2017-03-14 14:32:00.
Website: The Rest of the Story: Tobacco News Analysis and Commentary


A paper published in the current issue of the Annals of the American Thoracic Society reports the results of a survey regarding physician recommendations to their patients about the use of electronic cigarettes for smoking cessation.

(See: Nickels AS, Warner DO, Jenkins SM, Tilburt J, Hays JT. Pulmonologists’ and Primary Care Physicians’ Responses to an Adult Patient with Asthma Who Inquires about Using Electronic Cigarettes as a Smoking Cessation Tool. Annals of the American Thoracic Society 2017; 14(3): 466-468.)

Full article

Oi! EU! Tax On Vaping? NO!

Published on 2017-03-13 20:59:00.
Website: Dick Puddlecote


You may remember that last month was the closing date for an EU consultation on the taxation of manufactured tobacco products. The EU being the meddling EU, this naturally included their initial fumbling towards abusing e-cigs by taxing those too ... despite the devices and the liquid not containing any "manufactured tobacco" whatsoever.

The first results of the consultation have now been made available here, and there are some interesting discussion points.

Firstly, out of 7,686 responses, over 95% of them were submitted by members of the public, with only 3% coming from industry and a mere 1% from NGOs such as those in tobacco control. When tobacco controllers like to paint themselves as a David to the industry's Goliath, that pales into insignificance when it comes to their importance when the public itself gets motivated (more on that later).

Full article

Surgeon General Continues to Lie about Tobacco in E-Cigarettes

Published on 2017-03-12 13:54:00.
Website: The Rest of the Story: Tobacco News Analysis and Commentary


In an article published earlier this month in JAMA Pediatrics, the Surgeon General claimed that electronic cigarettes: "are now the most commonly used form of tobacco among youth in the United States, surpassing cigarettes, chewing tobacco, cigars, and hookah." The article repeatedly refers to e-cigarettes as a form of tobacco. In fact, the article contains four statements indicating that e-cigarettes are a "form of tobacco" or that vaping is a "form of tobacco use."

The Rest of the Story

There's just one problem with the Surgeon General's claim that vaping is a form of tobacco use: it's not true.

Full article

Scot puppets

Published on 2017-03-10 11:20:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist


The SNP has been building a whole own army of lobbyists to create the illusion of public demand for bans, taxes, minimum pricing and general lifestyle micromanagement. I mentioned Alcohol Focus Scotland and ASH Scotland last month. Inherited from previous governments, they consume £1.5 million of taxpayers' money every year between them.

While the UK government has taken action against state-funded political campaigning, the problem has been growing north of the border.

Full article

The year of acrylamide

Published on 2017-03-09 11:30:00.
Website: Velvet Glove, Iron Fist


You may fondly recall the scare story about roast potatoes that made everybody roll their eyes back in January. The villain of the piece was acrylamide, a chemical that is created when carbohydrates are cooked. It is not just roast potatoes, but french fries, biscuits, toasts and many other food stuffs that can generate acrylamide. It can cause cancer in mice, but only at very high doses (‘as much as 1,000 to 10,000 times higher than the levels people might be exposed to in foods’, according to the American Cancer Society.)

Full article

© 2017, The International Coalition Against Prohibition