Predisposed Outcomes

Another day, another study. Two actually. Though the first I was planning to cover is a meta analysis (which will have to wait), while the second is a vaping mouse study. As most of you will no doubt be aware, conducting experiments on mice is an age-old way of identifying possible links to humans.

However, in a large number of cases, the results identified in mice do not necessarily translate well across species to us homo-sapiens. Unfortunately, the fallout from this study is going to be the usual moral panic.

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Awareness Failure

It’s been a while since I had a good look at some junk science. I kind of missed doing it. So, what better way to get back to it then with this steaming pile of festering dingo kidneys?

This study sought to assess: 1) pervasiveness of vaping or electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) use, 2) General understanding of information on vaping or e-cigarette use, 3) Prevalence and respondent awareness of smoking/vaping prevention programs, and 4) Awareness of the harmful effects of e-cigarettes.

Kanyadan et al 2019

Oh boy.

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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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Another Ratchet Notch

Or in the words of Simon Clarkcreeping prohibition. Which is exactly what it is.

Bexleyheath town centre could become the first London Borough to implement smokefree zone

Time, and time again we see councils doing mad stunts like this. Bristol, of course, did it with voluntary bans in two town squares. Wales then banned smoking on a series of beaches. Swansea held a consultation (subsequently ignored, natch), Sheffield has done it, and of course, various NHS hospitals are banning smoking anywhere on their grounds, and finally, Birmingham Children’s Hospital proposed enforcing a smoke-free zone for nearby roads outside their grounds.

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Ideology Beats Science

It seems that the shrieking from tobacco control about the Smoke-Free Foundation is still going. I am not particularly surprised by the near-constant wailing. It has, however, taken on a particularly curious note with the activist magazine Tobacco Control now flat refusing to publish any “industry-funded” papers; something it’s refused to do since 2013.

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