We need help, but not yours

Well, these are crazy times no? Practically every country worldwide has some kind of lockdown, either voluntary or enforced. Extreme authoritarian measures are rife (I’m looking at you Hungary) with police completely misinterpreting the law (I’m looking at you UK).

All the while, intensive care unit beds (ICU) are being filled at a rapid pace. Unlike previous pandemics, COVID-19 is a bastard. A right, real bastard. It is highly contagious for one and, if the various statistics are to be believed, a real killer – though I suspect that, in some countries, COVID-19 is simply being attributed as the cause of some deaths – just as smoking is attributed to cancer related deaths.

Continue reading “We need help, but not yours”

Long Read: The “Evils” of Nicotine, JUUL and the Youth ‘Epidemic’

Settle down folks, this is going to be a long one.

I’ve recently had a few thoughts in my head about nicotine. The supposed “devil drug” that is “more addictive than heroin” (according to ASH Scotland from 2013, and debunked here – I know, debunked before ASH came up with that ‘FactSheet’; that’s just how inept they are), and how, in light of the US debacle, there are now circulating rumours of a nicotine cap.

Well, the EU has a nicotine cap of 20mg/ml and, for all intents and purposes, it’s dire.

Continue reading “Long Read: The “Evils” of Nicotine, JUUL and the Youth ‘Epidemic’”

Here We Go Again

There’s always something, isn’t there? Last year, back in March, there was a “bit of a kerfuffle” in the vaping community which led to a lot of name calling and general unpleasantness.

So much so that this post was needed. As was this one.

Sadly, nothing seems to have changed as it has all kicked off, once again. The only saving grace is that it doesn’t appear to have been as widespread. Yet.

Continue reading “Here We Go Again”

How Long Until Smoking is History?

Last night I attended a private event in London called ‘How long until smoking is history?’. Now, aside from my initial reaction to the question of the event which many of my regular readers should be able to guess, I was curious about the event.

Especially given who was behind it. The New Statesman ‘in association with Philip Morris International’.

Continue reading “How Long Until Smoking is History?”

IQOS: Good Thing, or Bad?

Ever since I tried an early heat-not-burn device when I attended the Global Forum on Nicotine (GFN) I have tried to keep an eye on the developing technology. At the end of the day, it’s really a simplistic concept. Instead of setting fire to loose-leaf tobacco wrapped in a slow-burning paper, it’s simply heated in a not too dissimilar way that an e-cig heats e-liquid.

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The Principle of Pleasure

This is one of those topics that you just know. One of those that you yourself understand, but find it somewhat tricky to put into some semblance of coherent speech. We all, to varying degrees, know what pleasure is. We all know what we enjoy, and we can all express; to an extent, why we enjoy something.

This is also one of those posts that’s taken far too long to write.

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On the lack of research in the media

Every once in a while a media article happens to come to my attention that makes me fall over in utter disbelief. Not simply due to the complete lack of understanding of the subject matter, but the complete disingenuity that the author takes to make as many bonkers points as possible.

It may be early in 2017, but this one is a strong contender for worst article of the year. Continue reading “On the lack of research in the media”

Wordplay: Alternative Substitutes

There are times every once in a while where I do truly become completely speechless. Lunchtime today was one of those times. For those of you that aren’t aware, my access to social media is restricted during the working day – as it should be, I have work to focus on. Continue reading “Wordplay: Alternative Substitutes”

Our survey says….

Surveys. I’ve touched on the usual suspects upholding their own data as though it was the Holy Grail before. ASH is utterly remorseless when it comes to trumpeting their own data, usually for their own means, and they also heap scorn on data that contradicts their sacrosanct view of the populace. Typically, in the UK we have two primary sets of survey data on smoking – the ASH survey (hosted by YouGov) and of course the Smoking Toolkit Study.

Both of these, along with many others run by Cancer Research UK, consistently show that never-smoking-teens rarely pick up e-cigs. They also consistently show little or no progression from e-cigs to combustible tobacco. They also consistently show a decrease in smoking prevalence at the same time there’s an increase in e-cig prevalence. It’s hardly the silver bullet to prove (or disprove) “gateway” theories correct or otherwise; after all it is still perfectly feasible that some insanely curious folks will experiment with both. It’ll happen.

Continue reading “Our survey says….”