FCTC ignoring founding principles

“The Eighth session of the Conference of the Parties (COP8) to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) is less than three months away. Taking place in Geneva from 1 to 6 October, it will focus on topics such as the shaping of a medium-term strategic framework, which will determine the actions to be taken by the Parties over the next five years, and the advances and challenges revealed in the Global Progress Report on Implementation of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

The Conference will also be the starting point for a wider application of the WHO FCTC not only for tobacco control, but also as an international treaty to support sustainable development, fight climate change and defend human rights.”

http://www.who.int/fctc/en/

For those not familiar with the “Conference of the Parties” (COP), it is a bi-annual event where around a thousand grey, soulless, anti-smoking extremists from all over the world swan off to a swanky conference centre (last time around in Delhi, India) to discuss a variety or authoritarian measures to further prohibit smokers from enjoying their habit. They also spend a lot of time debating whether or not the public and press should be allowed to witness what goes on, along with debating whether or not to ban e-cigs and other harm reduction products.

Oh, and it’s all funded by the taxpayer of the attending countries.

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Forget the little guy, it’s all Big Pharma now

Anyone remember when the United States was all about the entrepreneur? How many sought their fortunes, the “American Dream” (including the white picket fence) and so forth?

It seems that modern day America is now home to the corporations (very Continuum-like). So who better to look after the health and wellbeing of the population, than profit-driven mega-entities eh?

You’ll remember that, around this time last year, the newly appointed FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb made an interesting, and somewhat controversial, announcement. Controversial for the likes of Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids anyway. So controversial in fact, that they filed a lawsuit urging the FDA to apply the new rules.

Out of the many, many commentators on Gottlieb’s announcement last year, I and the illustrious Dick Puddlecote weren’t all that impressed.

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Another Round of Bullshit Bingo

If like me, you call “bullshit” whenever a news article claims that “e-cigs are as bad as smoking”, you’ve probably been playing the same game of bullshit bingo as I have.

Trouble is, I never seem to win anything.

The latest headlines, generated by a dodgy press release naturally, to spread like wildfire is, of course, all about “toxic metals” found in the liquid and aerosol. Naturally, when I first saw the headline, I uttered the now infamous phrase: “I call bullshit”.

Here’s why.

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A New Confidence Trick

As noted in 2006, ahead of the free vote to ban smoking in public spaces:

It is essential that campaigners create the impression of inevitable success. Campaigning of this kind is literally a confidence trick: the appearance of confidence both creates confidence and demoralises the opposition.

They “knew” they were going to win, and thus were confident in securing the votes for their “next logical step” in the war on smokers.

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American Cancer Society’s Confused Position

In somewhat of a surprising move, the American Cancer Society has quietly updated its position statement on electronic cigarettes. I say quietly because there is no mention of this update on any of the social media channels, nor was there any special press release or blog post on their website.

Naturally, doing that makes me a tad suspicious.

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