The Conversationalist

I recently posted about the possibility of two distinct stories that could arise from one source, it seems there has been a bit more action with one of the stories. Spurred on of course by new ‘evidence’.

Armed with this stunning new evidence our resident chipmunk decides to put pen to paper and attempts to ‘dissect’ the information presented. Think we can all guess how this is going to pan out can’t we?

Can't help or won't help
Can’t help or won’t help

Not exactly a good start to the ‘expert’ penmanship, considering the content of the studies that are being ‘dissected’.

The study of 1,473 English smokers found those who didn’t use e-cigarettes were more likely to stop smoking after 12 months

Oh dear, the very first fatal flaw in Mr Chimpman’s argument.  The number of participants that were followed up was 1,759. The 1473 Mr C mentions are those, at follow-up, that had a cessation attempt in the last year.  True, from a limited perspective, Mr C is actually correct (shock horror), but for the sake of precision let’s have a closer look.

Number of initial participants in the study: 4064

Number of participants followed up: 1759 (43%)

Main outcome measures (key stats to look at): cessation attempt (did the person try to quit), cessation (did they actually succeed in quitting), substantial reduction (still smoking, but substantially less than before; i.e. dual-use).

Cessation attempt in the last year: 1473

Substantial Reduction: 1042

Yeesh, I hate statistics. So Mr Chimpman is only looking at those that actually had an attempt to quit, which is fair enough as he is only looking at the possible effect of e-cigs on cessation rates.  The trouble is, e-cigs are not meant to be a cessation aid.  They are a less harmful alternative. I do not know how many freaking times I’m going to say that.  The fact that many e-cig users say they have “quit” is to my mind purely a very beneficial result of using them.

There are still a fair number of dual-users who are more than happy with using both. After all, aren’t e-cigs meant to be harm reduction rather than cessation devices? As Dr G said in the radio interview, “if you smoke less you are still reducing harm”.

The point of this post is not to debate the facts and figures (for once), but to look closely at Mr C’s own thoughts. Not something I’m particularly relishing by the way.

The research is from a highly respected group of English researchers, one of whom has been all but venerated by activist vapers for his optimism over e-cigarettes.

For some oddly bizarre reason, he has linked to VTTV here where Mr Dorn is having a lively discussion with Prof West.  This little nugget bothered me, why would Simone link to VTTV on this article? Not to mention the choice of wording.  Considering that many of us vapers do indeed have a great deal of respect Prof West, the wording choice made little sense coming from Simone.

For all intents and purposes, it struck me that possibly Simone was tying Prof West to VTTV in a non too subtle attempt at an indirect attack on his credibility.  This does make a lot of sense, considering that other researchers have also come under a lot of fire from those in Tobacco Control, even some of their own comrades have felt a bit of heat for even suggesting that e-cigs may actually be a good thing.

Mr C and his fanboi act
Mr C and his fanboi act

Ah, he is deliberately looking for an excuse to write about e-cigs, maybe so he can see who else is going to try to ‘engage’ with him only to block them immediately.  It isn’t lost on me that he felt he had to highlight commercial interests, ‘Big Vaping’ anyone?

An article about e-cigs from Simone wouldn’t at all be complete with reference or mention of his number one idol now would it? The meta-analysis that Frampton Stanz “performed” (actually, he did perform quite a stupid act with it), has already been debunked, trouble is I can’t remember by who or find the link right now.

But today’s Addiction paper addresses this criticism by dividing participants into three groups: those who attempted to quit without the use of e-cigarettes; those who used e-cigarettes occasionally (less than daily); and those who used e-cigarettes daily.

Oh dear, another inconsistency with Simone’s thought process.  The cessation attempt participants were divided into, e-cig use (none, daily and non-daily), socio-demographics, dependence and NRT.  So the data Simone quotes isn’t actually true, just made to look like it was all about e-cigs and only e-cigs when in fact it did include cessation attempts that used traditional NRT.

Simone goes on, and on, and on in very similar vein, citing all kinds of ‘studies’ that may lend any credence to the utter rubbish he is trying to sell, it does seem that he keeps trying to liken vapers to an unruly bunch, this time he likens us to drink drivers.



Not to mention that he is effectively saying that all our stories are to be dismissed as anecdotal and must not be used in ‘public health’. Yet in the comments…


So he insists that anecdotes are dismissed when forming ‘public health policy’, yet clearly states that the commentator who told their story is not dismissed as an anecdote.

Poor Simone, must be losing his marbles, but don’t worry he’ll tell you it’s all in your imagination just like the noise from wind farms.


Don’t worry Simone, at least actual Professors, researchers and doctors understand the science behind all this.

Bauld Hajeck Knapton


By the way, COI?







No such thing. Natch.